Adam Walters wins 2020 Victorian Junior Grass Court Championships

NEXT STEP: Adam Walters enjoyed one of his career's finest moments during a recent tour to Victoria.

NEXT STEP: Adam Walters enjoyed one of his career's finest moments during a recent tour to Victoria.

FOUR tournaments in 24 days, that was the equation for young tennis stars Adam Walters and Frederic Heslin as they packed their bags and went to Victoria for a recent tour.

The former hails from Newcastle and the latter from Maitland, but they train with the Hunter Tennis Academy (HTA) in Singleton.

Therefore it was a big ask for them to spend almost a month away from home, but they both rose the challenge in emphatic fashion.

Despite being just 17-years-old, Walters won the Victorian Junior Grass Court Championship in Wodonga, defeating number one seed Matt Scheers on the way to his title.

This has hugely boosted his ranking, climbing 199 places to be rated 380th in the Australian male rankings, although the fact he beat Scheers, who was inside the top 100, shows that his ceiling as a player is much higher.

While that was clearly his biggest achievement on the tour, results in other tournaments also painted an impressive picture for such a young player.

He fought his way through three qualifying rounds to make the main draw at the Warrnambool Grass Court Australian Money Tournament, going on to make the semi-finals in that competition.

Ten days later he made the third round of the Goulburn Valley Championships at Shepparton, and four days after that made the round of 16 in singles and quarter final in doubles at the Albury-based Margaret Court Cup.

It was at that tournament where Heslin made his mark, beating out a strong field to win the 16 and under boys singles, which was also an incredible achievement in unfamiliar territory.

HTA director of coaching, Gary Brenton, said the trip has been crucial in the duo's development.

"It gives them a sense of what it would be like to travel and how demanding and tough it is," he said.

"He [Heslin] has a nice game but really needed to work on his mental strength on court and tough things out and not panic, and he did that really well.

"Adam beat the number one seed at the tournament so that was a massive win for him... for 17-year-olds that would put him in the top four or five in New South Wales."

The importance of performing on long tours is something all upcoming tennis players must focus on according to the coach.

He said the sport is tougher to break into than it used to be, due to it now being a world game, as opposed to the past where it was largely Americans, Australians and Brits.

Interest in the sport is also on the rise, especially with the Australian Open kicking off and the success of female world number one Ash Barty.

Brenton said the Howe Park Tennis Club is looking to accommodate the increasing participation levels, and have options available for kids as young as four, all the way through to social tennis which can, and is, played by those in their 90s.

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