Thursday, April 8, 2010

Who's who in the TLN Community.

Player Profiles...

More than 7,000 players are part of our tennis league network. Some people have been members of their local group for several years and may have played each other several times by now. It’s always nice to know something about your opponent. From time to time we’ll post profiles of members in the various online communities. Even if they are not in your local league, they may have something in common with you. Or something they say about their own tennis game may resonate with you. What's certain is that you will learn something positive about Tennis League Network. Amy Kraus, who plays in Boston Community, is our first profile.

TennisNorthEast Helps Amy Kraus Improve Her Game
Amy Kraus (left, with Venus Williams) had been playing tennis for five years when she saw a flyer for Tennis League Network’s TennisNorthEast online tennis community posted at a court near her home in Boston, MA. She’s been a player with TennisNorthEast ever since—and that was five years ago.

Although she started out as a doubles player, she has been playing mostly singles for the past three years. “I am a better singles player,” says Amy, “since, unlike in doubles, I am the only one on court and I have to get every ball. It’s just me. I don’t have a partner to rely on.”

Amy has not only found other singles players, but enjoys playing “the same people year after year, and developing relationships with them.” So, Amy, do you have any League rivalries?

“My rivalries are essentially with those people I play most.” More important than rivalry, however, is that “there is always a challenge, no matter how good you think you are.” One of her most memorable League matches was with a player she has played quite often. Here’s that story:

“We were both short on time, so we decided on a 10-game pro set. It turned into longest match we ever played. We were both late for our next appointments. But the score was so close we continued to play. It turned into a long match of more than 2+ hours. I won but can’t remember the score.”

Her least favorite match was the one against a doubles teammate. When they played as singles opponents, she didn’t win a single game. Clearly it was a case of knowing each other’s game too well. “Every time I tried to do something to throw her off, she was able to compensate.”

So what’s the best thing Amy’s gotten from TennisNorthEast? Playing in the league “has done a lot to improve my game over the past 5 years. From April through October, there is a constant supply of singles players. It’s also a good workout and a lot of practice.”

Amy does make the most of it. She plays tennis two and sometimes three times a week. “It’s made me a better all around player,” says Amy, who currently plays at 3.0 level, but hopes to become a 3.5 player.

If you are interested in playing more tennis, Amy recommends both the Partners and the League groups, although she plays League matches more often since she is “not as proactive with the Partners group.”

Overall, it’s clear that Amy Kraus finds many positives in TennisNorthEast, not the least of which is the improvement in her game. As she points out, it’s not just local neighborhood program. “Most people don’t know that Tennis League Network is national with leagues in 34 cities and metropolitan areas. “I would urge everyone to join.”

Amy’s favorite moment outside the local league was attending Tennis League Network’s 2009 national tournament last year at Crandon Park in Key Biscayne, FL. That’s where she met Venus Williams, who was making a Tide commercial, and also doing an interview for one of the “athletes going green” spots. “We were only allowed to watch, but I did get to meet her when we left the court. By the way, she is really tall.”

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