Tennis New Zealand is looking to bring more professional tournaments home with the hope of helping the rising stars with valuable experience. Tennis NZ CEO Julie Paterson says that they are trying to get back some lower level tournaments to help the buddying young Kiwis.
"We're really keen to host a minimum of one and possibly two, the challenge is they're expensive," Paterson said. "We've been reviewing our tournament structure and we're still going through that process and trying to get clarity around the purpose of all of the tournaments that sit in New Zealand.
Paterson further added, "By going through that process, we've identified that we've got opportunities that sit around potentially putting a bid in for a US$15,000 or US$25,000 WTT events in New Zealand”.
"So we've got to figure out what's the best time in the calendar to do that and we've also got to find some money. But it's on our schedule and definitely fits within our strategy." Another way New Zealand players can help themselves is by making it into the Top-100 of the Junior rankings with three reserved places for the Top-100 juniors.
"The part that athletes can control, in terms of wanting to have opportunities at that entry level of professional tennis is to get ranked in the top 100 of junior rankings," Tennis NZ's high-performance manager said.
"That's where a lot of our focus has been over the time that Julie and I have been working together. We're starting to see some signs of progress, but we've got a lot further to go”. "Athletes that do get ranked in the top 100, then have access to reserve places into some of those draws and then they can control their own destiny”.