Tennis coach's 10 years celebrated

Wanaka Tennis Club coach Perry Crockett celebrates 10 years in the role with young proteges Ines...
Wanaka Tennis Club coach Perry Crockett celebrates 10 years in the role with young proteges Ines Stephani and Michael Gealogo (both 12) at a celebratory breakfast yesterday. Photo by Lucy Ibbotson.
From training sessions with Pat Rafter to sneaking into Andre Agassi's management box at the US Open, Wanaka Tennis Club coach and former professional player Perry Crockett has enjoyed some high profile encounters over the years.

But his decade spent coaching in Wanaka had also been filled with plenty of memorable people and experiences, he told guests at an event in his honour yesterday morning.

A breakfast was held at the Wanaka club to celebrate Mr Crockett's 10 years as coach, along with the achievements of junior members Ines Stephani and Michael Gealogo, who were ranked second and third respectively in New Zealand in their age group during the past year.

Speaking at the event, attended by about 120 people, Mr Crockett (35) said the sport had taken him all over the world and given him the opportunity to meet a huge range of people, from world ranked players to children from housing estate coaching programmes, which had been the best part of his career.

Club president John Lyness said older members of the club had benefited as much as the juniors from Mr Crockett's expertise.

''Most of us are playing better than we did 40 years ago.''

Ticket sales and an auction during the event raised more than $30,000 for the development of junior tennis at the club.

 

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