Lawn tennis champion returns after training stint in USA
Diwani Lewis returns from the Bill Adams International Lawn tennis Training Academy a much improved player.
Stabroek News
September 15, 2002

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National men's singles lawn tennis champion Diwani Lewis feels his game has made tremendous strides as a result of his scholarship at the Bill Adams International Training Academy.

The 21-year-old Lewis spent four-and-a-half months doing intensive training at the Bill Adams International Training Academy in Allentown, Pennysylvania where matches are played on `hard tru' courts.

Lewis explained that `hard tru' courts are made from green clay.

"At first it was kind of tough. In Guyana we only use hard courts, so I was getting some problems at first," he told Stabroek Sports.

However, Lewis said he gradually grew accustomed to the surface and "took it from there."


"The level its like totally different. It was interesting and the level was quite high. Everything is just advanced....these kids don't play."

To emphasize the fact, Lewis said he played in one tournament in Redding, Phoenix and lost 6-4, 6-2 in the second round.

His training consisted mainly of drills and there was fitness training after every session. Lewis said he trained six hours a day from 8-11am and 3-6pm.

"We were taught all the basic strokes and at a higher level," he said.

After every session there was an assessment session where the participants looked at different parts of their game.


Lewis who said he had a backhand problem before he left, feels he is hitting the ball much better now. His serve has also improved and he is now getting more bounce and pace.

An opportunity to visit the US Open at Flusing Meadows where he was able to see world rated players Pete Sampras, Andre Agassi and Lleyton Hewitt was also part of the training programme.

"It was a really, really good experience," he declared. Lewis' scholarship was made possible by former Guyana players Edmund Plass, Kayyam Naj and others.

As a result of discussions they held with Allen, he visited Guyana earlier this year to have a look at Lewis. Following the completion of his travel and other arrangements, Lewis left Guyana in early April.

"He said he was always helping other kids it's time he gave something back," Lewis recalled Allen saying.

Lewis expressed gratitude to William Skeete who introduced him to the sport and to Kings Jewellery and Avinash Complex who assisted with sponsorship.