It is a mystery for most parents to get their children’s tennis training right. Most of them spend a lot more money than those parents who bring up their children to become doctors and engineers.
In such a scenario, Chandra Bhushan comes as a refreshing change. Being a tennis coach, he has been able to take care of the tennis training of his children, Anukriti Prasad and Vishu Prasad. Moreover, he sets a fine example by competing in the ITF seniors circuit and winning titles in the 45 years section.
48-year-old Chandra Bhushan who has been working for the Sports Authority of India (SAI) ever since he topped the coaches course at the National Institute of Sports in Patiala in 1991 may not gloat much about his achievements of winning a series of ITF seniors titles or beating the former Davis Cupper Nandan Bal in the domestic circuit recently. However, he is very proud that his son Vishu has become No.1 in the country in the under-16 age group.
The coach, who worked diligently for the Post and Telegraph Department in Patna for nine years after graduation, had moved to Delhi in 1992. His daughter Anukriti had also pursued tennis with remarkable success but a back strain forced her to focus on her studies. She was a top junior who won the National School Games gold medal and represented the country in the World School Games. Anukriti has also kept her link with the game by becoming a tennis coach at the Starex International School in Vasundhara Enclave after graduating from Hans Raj College.
A tough coach on court, Chandra Bhushan has been able to guide his children well, and travelled with them across the country to provide them exposure.
It will be a lot more challenging for his son who wants to represent the country in the Junior Davis Cup under-16 competition next season and become the Wimbledon junior champion one day. On the one hand Vishu has to ensure that his ranking stays up to gain selection in the national squad, and at the same time he must train intelligently with coaches Shalini Thakur Chawla and Ashutosh Singh as part of the All India Tennis Association’s elite bunch at the Delhi Lawn Tennis Association (DLTA) Complex to get better.
“I was inspired watching my sister play. I appreciate my dad playing competitively, but I can beat him easily,” says the wiry lad.
Vishu plays football for about an hour every day to improve his physical fitness, and knows that he needs supreme physical strength, exceptional skill and sound knowledge of the game to excel internationally. As part of the Indian under-14 team he had got a chance to watch Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal in Doha last year, and Vishu’s bonding with the game has become a lot more intense since then. There is no fear of education scoring over tennis in his case.