The 2016-17 season is finally around the corner.
It's been a long few months with only one tournament since February. I have done a mountain of work in the off season with my trainer Gareth. We have worked on various things but mainly working on my endurance through different strength and cardio sessions. I had a particularly hard 4 week block of training through August, my on court practice definitely suffered through fatigue but now that I'm out the other side of that block and in a more tennis specific block leading into the French Open the on court practice feels like it has improved greatly.
In particular today was a good day in terms of preparation into the French. I had a 7.30am session with Gareth at The Sports Village - Sutton where we did some explosive footwork exercises over a 45 minute session.
At 12pm I had a two hour session with Rob Fahey at the new Wellington College real tennis court on my way to Leamington to have a challenge match vs Ben Taylor-Matthews. Even with the busy day I had I felt nice and sharp around the court. Ben didn't have his best day and I took the match 6/3 6/1 for a good result leading into the French Open on an away court.
With a few players opting out of the French Open this year I have been seeded in the number 4 position. The French Open runs from the 18th-25th September
My 1st round opponent is a qualifier on Sunday 18th. If I keep working through the draw my likely opponent through seeding would be a Quarterfinal against World Number 8 (5th seed) Kieran Booth who I've had some lengthy battles with in the past. Last time we met was a 4 set win in a Semifinal of the 2015 Australian Open in Melbourne.
The winner getting a chance to play the new World Champion in Camden Riviere in a Semifinal. Last time I played Camden was unfortunately a straight sets loss at the 2016 US Open in Chicago.
In the other half of the draw the players seeded to reach the Semifinal are Rob Fahey and Ben Taylor-Matthews.
Both the singles and doubles draws can be found on the IRTPA fixtures page
I'm very much looking forward to the next season and a half as I try to qualify for the 2018 World Championship Eliminators.