The Cayman Islands Tennis Club’s manager and head pro, Rob Seward, is taking some of the top Cayman junior tennis players to Jamaica this weekend to participate in two regional tennis tournaments.
“This is the second straight year that we will have the top tennis juniors from Cayman participate in the tournament,” Seward said.
Last year, the tournament was held during the Easter holiday and Callum Theaker and Daniel Reid were the two participants.
Theaker, 12, won his age division for the 12 and under, while Reid also had success reaching the semi-finals of the 14 and under.
The Blue Mountain Junior Caribbean Regional Tennis Championships have been moved to July so that the kids can participate in them, as well as in the International Tennis Federation Junior Championships straight after.
“We are very excited to be sending five juniors this year from the Cayman Islands Tennis Club where all the kids train and improve all year round,” said Seward.
Marc Reid, 17, who has attended school in Canada this year and would be Cayman’s top 18 and under if he was here full time, is competing for the first time in the Blue Mountain Tournament, as well as participating in the ITF event.
His younger brother, Daniel, 14, who is the Island’s top 18 and under, is participating in two age divisions.
Theaker, Cayman’s No. 2 18 and under, is in both tournaments too, in the 14 and 16 age divisions.
A couple of newcomers are Jade Wilkinson and Matthew Barnett. Wilkinson, 12, is currently the No. 2 player while Barnett, 13, is the No. 3 player in Cayman in the 14 and under divisions for the PWC Junior Circuit.
Seward feels this is a critical part of the juniors’ development to play in these types of tournaments because they get to see how close they are as far as levels.
The Tennis Club has always tried to encourage this amongst our juniors. Dale Avery, earlier in the year, took a group of juniors to the Casely Tournament in December and to the IMG Tournament in June, both in Florida.
The Blue Mountain Championships are at the Liguanea Club in Kingston, with the individual age divisions as well as the team competition.
“We are very excited to be able to enter the Cayman Islands into the team event this year and we hope that we will be bringing back first place,” said Seward.
“There will be some tough countries to contend with in Barbados, Trinidad, St. Lucia, Antigua, Grenada, Bahamas, and of course the host nation, but we will do our best and give 100 per cent effort.”
Seward thanked the parents for making their sacrifices for their children to experience this exciting tournament and The Cayman Islands Tennis Federation for assisting in his expenses.