Young guns are firing
By BRAD GREENSHIELDS
NEXT time you take junior down to Coffs Harbour Tennis Club for a lesson don't mistake the club's new coaches for being part of the group.
It's an easy error to make as Matt Wray and Bryce Cunningham are among the youngest qualified tennis coaches in the country.
Both only recently received their coaching credentials which are recognised internationally and head coach Danny Souza is already ecstatic with how much work the pair have done at the club.
"Both of them have been helping our juniors progress and we've produced some very good juniors in the past," he said.
"We've had players ranked in the top five in Australia before but our next goal is to get a junior into the world rankings."
Wray, 18, has only just returned to the game he loves on a full-time basis after spending time away to complete his HSC studies while Cunningham at only 16 has broken into the country's top 500 in the rankings, jumping more than 300 places in the last three months.
The pair are working overtime at the moment with the junior programs but Souza warns that there's more work ahead for them.
"We're going to start getting them to do their advanced certificate," he added.
"Hopefully Matt will get back into playing shortly as I think they'd also make an excellent doubles pairing."
Both are now qualified to teach the finer points of the game from serving and volleying to showing you a backhand slice that could shave the hairs off a kiwi fruit.
Cunningham is pinching himself that he's already managed at such a young age to find a job that combines work and sport while Wray is getting a huge thrill out of seeing the juniors constantly improve under his tutelage.
Both Wray and Cunningham are available for coaching at the Coffs Harbour Tennis Club.