This article is part of the CCA Previews for 2016.
By Tennis EXCO’16
A day in the life of…
A member of Raffles Tennis. Well to begin, trainings are twice a week and span two hours each session: 2–4 in the afternoon on Wednesdays and the dreaded 7.30–9.30 trainings in the morning on Saturdays. Just the thought of waking up the before the sun rises on a Saturday is painful enough and now you’ve got to rush to school (ON A WEEKEND!!) and go through two hours of strenuous physical activity. Sometimes, we even have training at 5.45am during school days before school starts. Doesn’t that sound like a dream come true?
Well, yes. It actually is. When you’re part of Raffles tennis you’re not merely part of a team, you’re part of a family. The people you meet here are the people you’ll be going through two extremely intense years of training and season with. From the repetitive and high effort down-the-line and cross-court drills to the laps of lunges and 2.4km run at the end of training during the offseason, trainings are sure to be exhausting. But pushing through all the physical pain and persevering when the body has given up and the mind takes over, gives a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction that simply cannot be described. There is something special about tennis, as it requires a unique blend of mental and physical toughness both on and off the court. However, all of this cannot be achieved if you embark on this journey alone.
We study together, go out for team lunches every other day, hang out with each other after school and somehow never get bored. Once every two years there’s even an overseas trip during the March holidays for us to train with student athletes elsewhere and to help further bond the team just before season.
As peculiar as it may seem due to the supposed individuality of the sport, going through these two years of sweat and tears by yourself is going to be unbearable – that’s where support and teamwork kicks in. Trainings are no walk in the park, but with your teammates by your side constantly encouraging and supporting you, you start to push yourself past your limits; as much as you want it for yourself, you want it even more for the team: for the teammates who stood by your side through all the pains of physical trainings, through all the defeats and triumphs during season. That’s the beauty of Raffles Tennis. It is going through the thick and thin that bonds us as a team and makes us family. We go through so much as a team and are so prevalent in each other’s life in every aspect that your teammates become brothers and sisters to you, supporting and helping you in tennis, studies and things that happen in your everyday life.
As much as we strive for excellence and work towards our collective goal of the double gold in the A’ Division, winning really isn’t the most important thing when you’re in Raffles Tennis. Our seniors have mentioned on several occasions that the bronze we attained this year meant so much more than the gold they achieved last year simply because of the closeness of the team, the family they felt they were a part of. At the end of the day, on behalf of my teammates, I can proudly say that I am glad to be part of this family.