Tennis

Coach Ganesh Raman aims to have six Indians in top-100

Coach Ganesh Raman with players and parents.

Coach Ganesh Raman with players and parents. | Photo Credit: Kamesh Srinivasan

Despite the growing commercialisation in tennis, coach Ganesh Raman is confident that his formula of making the game affordable could generate champions with hunger to excel.

Watching one of his players in the ongoing ITF tournament at the Tennis Project, the seasoned coach from Hyderabad who had trained Sania Mirza for five years, in two spells, before and after her stardom, felt that Indian women players had the potential to make it big.

‘’Most of the coaching is constantly focused on tuning technique. After a point, the game is more mental. We need to build a players’ self esteem, self confidence and self belief. If we do that, they would win even without the best technique,’’ said Raman.

After working on sand / clay courts over the years, and availing of the synthetic courts on temporary basis whenever required, Raman has got into a ‘’dream project’’ to have two synthetic courts and four clay courts at one place.

‘’We have got 1.25 acres of land on a 10-year lease. The project of building the courts would cost about Rs.44 lakh. We have raised 18 lakhs so far through donations, including five from NRIVA, an US-based company,’’ said Raman.

A bunch of talented girls, determined to make the breakthrough - Niditra Rajmohan, Smriti Bhasin, Paavanii Paathak, Chandana Potugari and Shria Atturu - are training with Raman.

Letting his wife to take care of three batches with lots of trainees, Raman focuses on the core group, and helps them with total attention.

‘’We intend to have about eight girls in 10-11 age group. We will train them in the best possible way for about eight years. Sania could reach up to No. 27 in singles and win so many Grand Slams in doubles and mixed doubles. We are still searching for a second player to break into top-100. I want to see at least six Indians in the top-100 of WTA ranking in the next 10 years,’’ said Raman, confident that he would play his role to accomplish the goal.

Raman was very happy about Indian players benefiting from a series of tournaments at home.

‘’We need a lot of competition,’’ said Raman, stressing the point that the players would improve their quality by competing against strong players.


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Printable version | Aug 15, 2022 2:07:54 am | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/tennis/coach-ganesh-raman-aims-to-have-six-indians-in-top-100/article65576628.ece