In our new series, ‘Showcase your Sport’, in association with the Irish Federation of Sport, we will be giving you a thorough insight into some of the most fascinating sports we have in Ireland.
This week, we’re focusing on tennis and to learn more about the day-to-day life of an Irish tennis player, we’ve put our questions to pro player, Peter Bothwell.
1. When did you first start playing tennis?
I started playing tennis around the age of five. My Mum and Grandad were both coaches so it was easy to get started. My whole family was sporty so from a young age I was playing lots of sport.
2. Which player inspired you growing up?
Lleyton Hewitt was my idol growing up. I loved the intensity and attitude he had on the court. I used to copy his ‘python celebration’ when I was younger and had my cap on backwards just like he did.
3. What does a normal training week look like for you?
Normally I train six days a week. Monday to Friday, I would have two tennis sessions which would be two hours long and a 90-minute fitness session. Saturday is just one tennis session and one fitness session. Every training day I’d have a warm-up an hour long and 30 minutes recovery at the end of the day.
4. What is your favourite memory from the sport?
My favourite memory is definitely winning the Irish Open in 2018. It was my first professional singles title and winning on home soil was super sweet.
5. Best/worst thing about playing tennis?
The best thing is definitely playing a sport I love competing in and then the traveling that comes with it. The worst thing is not being able to travel with a coach because it’s not affordable.
6. Favourite competition to take part in?
My favourite competition is the Davis Cup. I really enjoy the team environment and I’m very passionate about putting on the green jersey. It’s a great honour to represent your country.
7. Do you believe the sport has grown in Ireland?
To be honest I’m not sure. I have lived away from home for the past seven years.
8. What would you like to see done to grow the sport?
Well, facilities are crucial. We don’t have the same surfaces that most of the sport is played on. We need more clay courts and more indoor facilities. We also need more competition.
9. What would you like to achieve in the sport?
I want to push myself to be the best I can be. I want to try to reach my full potential.
10. Why should people get involved in tennis and how can they do it?
It’s great for your physical and mental health and it’s a sport for life. It’s a lot of fun. Join your local tennis club or many parks tennis schemes all over your country.