Tennis: TCC's Rahni Parle.
Tennis: TCC's Rahni Parle.

Rocky schools makes debut in day one of Qld School finals

TENNIS: The Cathedral College stepped up to serve on Thursday, with five of its shining tennis stars representing the region in day one of the Queensland Secondary School Team Tennis competition finals.

Beating out open teams from Rockhampton, Yeppoon, Emerald and Biloela in the regional competition last week, the squad, made up of Julia Collins, Isabella Cooper, Charlie Stirling, Olivia Massingham and Rahni Parle, delivered some impressive shots over their competition yesterday.

It’s the first time TCC have played in the competition, joining five boys from Biloela also representing the region.

The girls took on Sunshine Coast Grammar, securing three out of four singles wins, and one of two doubles.

Julia, 12, said the four set to two win was a great way to kick off the competition and despite the tough moments, the Rocky girls showed proved themselves to be “more consistent” than their rivals.

Tennis: TCC's Olivia Massingham.
Tennis: TCC's Olivia Massingham.

“(For the next rounds) we’ll just try to place our shots well and hit them consistently,” she said.

Charlie, 12, added that strength and smarts helped them “get the shots in”, as well as taking advantage of their angles.

“Just hitting them consistently, and thinking smart on the court to get them to the angles that will make them off their game,” she said.

Charlie said she expected the Brisbane teams to be tough competition, as they train together more.

TCC teacher and tennis program co-ordinator Bernie Parle said the day was going well but with tennis “you never know”.

“It’s a mental game as well as a physical game,” he said.

“We just won the first two sets against Fairholme College (Toowoomba) so that puts them in a pretty good position and we just need to win one more, hopefully two more, to get through.

“Then another round after that against Moreton Bay (yesterday) and hopefully we’ll be near the top and go through to the semi finals tomorrow.

“It’s sudden death. You don’t have another set to recover. If you lose one set, you don’t get another chance.”

Tennis: TCC's Charlie Stirling
Tennis: TCC's Charlie Stirling

Winning at a competition like this could send players to the Australian Titles and then if successful again, off to Germany for the World Championships, won by a Brisbane school last year.

“We’re not looking that far ahead but it would be nice to get up in the top place for Queensland,” he said.

“This is an opportunity to play against kids across the state and if you’re a tennis player you want to be playing in these sort of competitions.

“It’s also a lead up to the State Age Junior Titles (U10 — U18) which start on Saturday and go for four days in Rockhampton.”