Tennis

Dev Javia focused on pro circuit

Looking ahead: Dev Javia, the country’s best ranked junior tennis player at No. 54 in the world, is aiming to step it up.

Looking ahead: Dev Javia, the country’s best ranked junior tennis player at No. 54 in the world, is aiming to step it up.  

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The left-hander prioritises staying fit and improving his game

The biggest temptation for any good junior tennis player in the country is to get admission in one of the American universities and ensure a secure career. A few like Mahesh Bhupathi, Somdev Devvarman, Sanam Singh or Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan returned from the good life of the US to excel in the professional circuit.

When Somdev opted to study in the US and pursue his tennis along with it, after having won the men’s ITF Futures title on clay when he was 17 years old, many felt that he was being sucked by the urge of a secure career.

Somdev proved his hunger for tennis by winning back to back NCAA singles titles, beating no less than the towering John Isner in one final.

However, no Indian player from American universities has had such success as Somdev, who won the Commonwealth Games and Asian Games gold medals, apart from reaching a career best rank of 62.

Steadfast

In such a scenario, 17-year-old Dev Javia, ranked junior No. 54 in the world on Monday, has steadfastly countered his parents’ recommendation of pursuing his tennis along with his education in the US.

The good thing is that Somdev is in touch with the talented left-hander and his parents to ensure the best possible guidance at this crucial juncture.

“Dev did work in the camp with us. He did well. If he takes the right steps, he could be really good,” said Somdev, who recently conducted a training camp in Chennai.

He may not have a big build but Dev is a delight to watch on a tennis court. He can construct the points well and be explosive with his serve and strokes when required.

Dependable guide

Groomed from a young age by coach Shrimal Bhatt in Ahmedabad, Dev has found a dependable guide in coach Stephen Koon at the Impact Tennis Academy in Thailand.

“I have put in the hours, as I got good time to work on my fitness as well as my game. We have two weeks before the grade-1 tournament in Australia, followed by the Australian Open. I should be ready by that time, and hopefully perform well,” said Dev, when contacted at his training base in Bangkok.

Dev is pretty clear in his mind that he would compete in the juniors to get the Grand Slam experience, but start competing among the men from this year to form a strong base.

“I have some goals to achieve in men’s circuit this year. But, I am looking to develop myself, doing the right things, surrounded by right people. This year is crucial for me. So, I have to stay fit and improve my game, to compete at higher levels,” said Dev.

Watch out for Dev Javia!

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Printable version | Jan 24, 2020 8:38:55 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/tennis/dev-javia-focused-on-pro-circuit/article30495154.ece

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