Better qualified coaches needed to boost tennis development


Prince Madema delivering a lecture yesterday

Seychelles Tennis Association (STA) secretary Carlo Lauro said this yesterday morning at the Seychelles Olympic and Commonwealth games Association (Socga) head office during the launch of the Olympic Solidarity-sponsored level one coaching course aimed at boosting the numbers of coaches in the country.

Socga president Antonio Gopal, National Sports Council chief executive Alain Volcère, Socga secretary general Alain Alcindor, course director Prince Madema and French coach Frédéric Canale were present at the ceremony.

When he addressed those taking part in the 10-day (June 5-15) course, Mr Lauro said Seychelles’ tennis has improved over the last two years thanks to the devotion of the members of the new STA executive committee and the hiring of French coach Canale who has been doing a good job.

He added that now that “Seychelles’ tennis has climbed up one or two steps on the ladder of success, we need more good coaches for it to continue progressing.”

Mr Gopal said he is pleased with the STA for initiating this course and added that he hopes it will be the beginning of a bright future for local tennis which had existed long before many other sports but has not had the same success in terms of results and popularity.

“I’m happy to see an accelerated level of development in tennis over the last two or three years and I wish to thank all those involved for their enthusiasm and devotion to get things going. We need to be competitive as other countries of the region,” said Mr Gopal.

Familiar with the local tennis structure for having run many courses in the past here, International Tennis Federation (ITF) development officer Prince Madema said the delegates will firstly be involved in the ‘play and stay’ course which is compulsory before following the level one course.

In the ‘play and stay’ course, the coaches will work on how to introduce tennis to beginners while the level one course is for the intermediate and advanced players.

"The coach will be looking at one's ability to play, individual teachings, group teachings and they will have a written exam on the last day and we will have assessments on their work," said Madema.

Madema said they are focusing on the new concept of coaching, whereby players are not taught how to play tennis but given an opportunity to showcase their talent and discover where they need help.

"We want players to play naturally and see what is lacking in their game. We don't want to be telling them what to do. Coaches should be able to show young players how to play. This is because kids learn better by watching," said Madema who will be helped by French coach Canale.

G. G.

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