What do you want from your opponent today?

I want her to show up.

To physically show up and sign in.  Without her I have no game, no match - there is no 'sport' without the opposition. 

Then I want her to show up fit and ready with her full effort, her full range of skills, her full competitive ability.  I want and expect her to fight like hell against me.  

That's the only way I can measure myself today, because I want to be tested, examined and challenged.  And when I'm tested, examined and challenged, that's where I learn, that's where the value and enjoyment is found because I love the battle.

And I will respect her best effort by bringing mine and fighting for e-v-e-r-y single ball and leaving my skin on the court if I have to.

Let's play.









Amelie Brooks blasts her way into the finals of the 12&U National Championships in Bournemouth today

A superb effort by Everyball's Amelie Brooks who won through to the finals of the Girls 12&U National Championships in Bournemouth today.

7th seed Amelie beat 2nd seed Abby Kelliher 2-6 6-2 6-1 in the semi-final to avenge two earlier losses this year to Abby in a show of determined power hitting and brave defending.

Amelie will play top seed Mingge Xu in tomorrow's final at 11.30am at the West Hants Club.

Fantastic job Amelie.  

Well done also to Joel Good and Millie Day on their efforts at Nationals this year.  Both fell at the first hurdle but will no doubt be back even stronger next year. 

Sadly, Joel leaves us at Everyball to go the Millfield School for 6th form and we wish him all the very best in this and look forward to seeing him back at Halton during the holidays!  He has been at Halton since he was a Mini Red player and has been a huge asset to us and a wonderful servant to the club, showing great commitment to our junior and adult teams and representing Everyball with distinction in many national competitions through the years.  You'll be sorely missed Joel but will always be an 'Everyballer'.


Defining tactics and strategy

Always a good debate this.  Defining tactics and strategy.

This from David Epstein's new book Range - How Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World (a book by the way I recommend for all coaches, teachers and parents):

There is a saying that 'chess is 99 percent tactics.' Tactics are short combinations of moves that players use to get an immediate advantage on the board.  When players study all those patterns, they are mastering tactics.  Bigger-picture planning in chess - how to manage the little battles to win the war - is called strategy.

Same could be said in our sport of tennis.  Tactics being those short combination of moves that players use to get an immediate advantage on the court:

- Serve out wide and cheat position to get a forehand on ball 3

- Approach line and volley cross

- Heavy deep ball followed by drop shot

- Cross-court 3/4 court angle followed by change of direction line

- change of pace/spin; hit two, slice one 

The list could go on and on, but tactics in tennis must be part of a greater strategic narrative which must involve using one's own strengths against your opponent's weaknesses (and hiding one's own weaknesses!), combating a particular game-style and persona, whilst appreciating environment, court surface, score, and finally effectively controlling and exploiting space and time on a consistent basis.

Sometimes it might be helpful simply to ask whether my current tactics are aligned to an over-arching match strategy or am I just executing entrenched 'tactical plays'.  Top players tend to be hugely successful adapters (even if the adaptions are small) so they avoid the same old patterns that may work against one opponent but not another.  For example, how much has Roger Federer's record against Rafa improved since he started to drive more backhands down the line taking the ball earlier and hitting it harder to Rafa's backhand as opposed to the same of slice cross that, whilst effective against many other players, was feeding Rafa's insatiable forehand.  A refined tactic sitting within a more clearly defined strategic aim.






We're serving up our last two weeks of Summer Tennis Camps! Don't miss out on the ball we're having!

What shall we do with the kids this week?!!! Don't worry, we've got you, sign them up for one of our Everyball Tennis camps for sporty tots, minis and juniors players of all levels!  This pesky weather won't stop play either with our indoor courts at Halton Tennis Centre!

To sign up, simply jump onto our website via this link and click on 'camps' for our Halton Tennis Centre and Tring Tennis Club offerings: http://everyball.uk/



3 Everyballers play at this years Junior National Championships

Congratulations to Joel Good, Millie Day and Amelie Brooks for qualifying for this years Junior National Championships in Nottingham(18s, 16s, 14s) and Bournemouth (12s) respectively.  A super achievement and testament to all your hard work during the year - well done!

First round matches:

Joel v Mattias Southcombe - Tuesday 10am

Millie v Hannah Read (4() - Monday 9.00am

Amelie (7) v Lily Doherty - Monday 1.00pm

Wishing you all the best a be warriors out there!