No let up for Rayleigh coach Ryan Wilson after winning Essex County LTA awards

Ryan Wilson with his Essex County LTA coaching awards

Ryan Wilson with his Essex County LTA coaching awards

First published in Sport by

RYAN Wilson is determined not to rest on his laurels after winning two Essex LTA coching awards.

The Rayleigh Lawn Tennis Club coach picked up the mini tennis coach award and jointly won the outstanding work in development/club coaching accolade.

Both awards were given for Wilson’s work with junior players at the Watchfield Road club and he is keen to build on his achievements over the past five years.

“I’m really happy to have won the awards but it is a case of keep moving on,” Wilson said.

“The important thing is to build on the foundations that have been laid at the club.

“When I went into the club there were junior classes on Saturday mornings and we now have classes nearly every night of the week.”

Among Wilson’s successes last year was running a tennis competition in junior schools in the Rayleigh area.

More than 400 pupils from Edward Francis, Rayleigh Primary, Wyburns and Our Lady of Ransom took part and the winners of those were invited to a finals day at the club in July.

The club also had a record 137 junior members in 2013 and also saw an increase in adult membership.

Rayleigh juniors also won Leigh & Westcliff LTA junior league titles last year and Oliver Crickmay won the under-nine and the under-10 events in the Southend & District LTA summer tournament.

Wilson has also seen around five younger players a year progress to the standard where they can play alongside the adults in league matches.

The coach said the introduction of floodlights at the club had helped expand the junior section but he admits having more courts lit is the key to expanding the programme.

“We are close to capacity at the moment but keeping the kids playing is one of the most important things for the club,” he added. “We need them to make the transition from juniors to seniors because adult members keep the club going.

“Winning the Essex LTA awards will help too because it is good for the club as we are always trying to promote tennis to the local community.”

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