Tennis academy could be ready by 2016

Tennis academy could be ready by 2016

If all goes according to plan, a junior tennis academy could be launched here as early as 2016.

Speaking to The New Paper on Tuesday, Singapore Sports Council (SSC) chief executive officer, Lim Teck Yin, said it is currently working through the processes of building the facility, and is in discussions with several parties who could run the academy.

The Straits Times had earlier reported that representatives from the SSC had met with Carlos Rodriguez, the coach behind the resurgence of two-time Grand Slam champion Li Na, to discuss a collaboration for a junior tennis academy.

It is understood that a plot in Kallang has been earmarked for the facility, which could house up to 24 courts.

Lim, who was speaking on the sidelines of the sponsorship announcement of the year-end WTA Championships here, said: "The first part of the process is finding the land for it. Then, there's finding the people who will (run) the academy, which we are currently in the midst of doing.

"The most important aspect is, of course, trying to determine the model for the academy.

"2016 is a realistic target, considering the infrastructure needed, and given that we are also busy with the South-east Asia (SEA) Games (in Singapore next year)."

The WTA Championships' five-year commitment is an opportunity to gain tangible benefits for tennis in Singapore - from setting up the academy, to elevating the quality of coaches in the region, and ultimately improving the quality of tennis players here.

"We are definitely looking at capitalising on the WTA (Women's Tennis Association) presence in Singapore," Lim said.

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