Turkmen tennis players demonstrate good level before home Asian Games

Photo: Yuri Shkurin

Turkmenistan Tennis Federation was formed in 1993 and since 2003 is a member of International Tennis Federation (ITF). In 2004, it joined Asian Tennis Federation (ATF) with the Headquarter in New-Delhi (India). The objective of the Federation include popularization of these sports, demonstration of its advantages for health, attraction of more Turkmen citizens to the courts as well as selection of talented youth for training of high-class sportsmen.

In 2016, Teheran (Iran) held Davis Cup where our Turkmenistan took part and our man team retained its title and confirmed the rating in the third subgroup in Asian and Oceania zone. In the same year, Colombo (Sri Lanka) hosted junior competitions up to 16 years old. Our tennis players won the third place in total team count.in December 2016, Ashgabat held test competitions and National team of Turkmenistan for participation in 2017 Asian Games was formed by its outcomes.

In the beginning of the year, our team went for the tournament in Antalya (Turkey) and also participated in the competitions in Manama (Bahrein) where two categories of ITF Futures competitions took place where only adults are allowed to participate. This is a round of man tournaments which as well as woman tournaments of lower level are starting competitions in the careers of professional tennis players. It also has a prize money and the results of performances are accounted in ATP and WTA ratings.

2017 Asian Games offers participation of the sportsmen of 14 – 24 age groups. Tennis tournament is to be divided to woman and man. Single and pair contests are planned for both groups. As only certain number of players are allowed participating in the competitions, the composition of foreign teams are 3 men and 3 women. Turkmenistan, as a hosting country, is allowed proposing twice the number – six men and six women. Each discipline of the tournament is proposed to have competitions for one first, one second and two third places.

Turkmenistan National Tennis team actively trains for V Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games on the courts of the Olympic village, where they have two trainings a day, which together with main practicing of techniques includes heavy physical exercises we have two coaches from France now who consult, share their skills and rich experience and conduct training sessions. Sebastian Mathew and Sabri Junlee train man and woman teams accordingly.

We have selected the best tennis players for participation in 2017 Games and now we carry out daily laborious work with them, - Head Coach of National team Serdar Byashimov says. – We have talented young guys who have large perspectives and opportunities of personal growth, for example, during IV Islamic Solidarity Games in Baku, Turkmenistan woman team won the bronze in total team count. In this particular discipline, the winner and prize holder are determined by the results of sportsmen’s performance in two individual and one pair contests. Our girls – Jahan Bayramova, Anastasia Prenko and Guljahan Muhammetguliyeva won the hosts of the Games – Azerbaijan team and Pakistan on the way to cherished prize.

Recently, tennis become more and more attractive, the sections are opened almost in all velayats where excellent tennis courts were built. National team has not only the sportsmen from the capital but also players form the regions. Currently, our National man team is participating in International Tournament - the Davis Cup in Sri Lanka.

Readiness to not just participation but also to deserving performance at such responsible competitions as Asian Games requires serious concentration, huge efforts and self-disciplinary of the sportsmen. Tennis is not just a game but sport, first of all. Understanding of the game, ingenuity and known skills are not enough. Responsible five sets match with changing success can last for hours and become real test for strength. Here, the sportsman needs fortitude, character and willing to win. These are the moments of tense sports confrontation, which people come to see, when breath-taking beauty of tennis reveals.