A day with Lebanon’s Davis Cup teenage tennis ace Nour Nehme

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What had been you doing at 17 years previous? Most youngsters are finding out for exams, having fun with their adolescence, listening to music and usually making life troublesome for his or her dad and mom.

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Then there’s Nour Nehme, who has already performed Davis Cup tennis for Lebanon. The prodigious expertise made his worldwide bow in March, 4 months shy of his 18th birthday, shedding his singles encounter 6-0, 6-2 to Chinese language Taipei’s Chieh-Fu Wang.

His opponent was 5 years older than him and ranked 996th on the earth.  The American College in Dubai scholar is upbeat, enriched by his experiences. Having had a style of the excessive life, he admits he’s hungry for extra.
How previous had been you whenever you first performed tennis?

I began enjoying tennis after I was 5 in our yard tennis court docket in Lebanon, however I finished and began to play once more after I was 12. It was my grandfather who introduced me again into tennis.
What led you to an curiosity in tennis?
Tennis has been in my household for a really very long time and several other members of my household had been Lebanese champions. My mom at all times advised me tales in regards to the tournaments they used to play and at a sure time I fell in love with the sport and I felt that I needed to attempt to do one thing in tennis.
Who’s your tennis hero and why?
My tennis hero is my coach in Lebanon Thomas Wille, due to all the things that he achieved in his tennis life. He truly nonetheless beats me in matches however hopefully that can change quickly. My favorite ATP gamers are Rafael Nadal, for his combating spirit, and Jo Wilfried Tsonga, for the large sport he performs.

Who has been the largest affect in your profession?
Thomas. Once I first began enjoying with him I by no means thought I might be the place I’m immediately. He taught me many of the issues I learn about being a tennis participant.
What was your Davis Cup expertise like?
It was an unbelievable expertise enjoying Davis Cup. The ambiance was simply unimaginable. If you play on your nation it’s a totally completely different feeling. The hospitality was additionally wonderful. We had our personal lounge and the resort was very snug and the individuals had been very good and all the things was simply very completely different for me. The entire journey gave me loads of motivation and in addition I had the honour of giving a speech on the official Davis Cup dinner which was wonderful.
What was the largest factor you took away from it?
I discovered a lot from enjoying Davis Cup. I discovered so much, particularly from the individuals I used to be across the complete time, like our group captain Hussein Badredine, who has been on the Davis Cup group for 25 years. I used to be at all times listening to what he was saying. Additionally, I discovered from Karim Alayli who has been enjoying Davis Cup for 16 years and I used to be so fortunate to play the doubles rubber with him, and in addition Ibrahim Abou Chahine helped me particularly, as a result of he additionally performed his first Davis Cup tie at a younger age. Chinese language Taipei have a participant, Yen-Hsun Lu, who was as soon as quantity 33 within the ATP rankings and whenever you watch gamers of that calibre you realise the work that must be carried out and the self-discipline you’ll want to have with a purpose to have an opportunity of succeeding in tennis.
So I performed 4 finals in a row on Friday and I solely began cramping after the seventh straight hour on court docket…#shocked
— nour nehme (@nournehme7) March 29, 2015
You performed 4 matches in seven hours just lately. How was that?
Enjoying 4 finals in in the future was one thing I by no means anticipated. Sadly the final match ended with me cramping. I made an enormous mistake by not calling the coach after I first felt ache however aside from that the day went effectively. I actually loved it. I performed the 2 doubles finals with my coaches from PSS (Skilled Sport Companies) Tennis Academy, the academy that I’m enjoying with right here, and they’re very skilled gamers so that they helped me, and in addition I had loads of help from the blokes there, like head coach Sigi Meeuws and Laith Al Ani, the event referee.
What’s your plan for the remainder of the yr?
My plan for the remainder of the yr is to maintain bettering and enjoying as a lot as attainable and to get match once more. I’ll in all probability play a few ITF junior tournaments and I’m additionally enjoying my first Futures event this month. Relying on how I do there, I’ll resolve whether or not I’m able to journey and play some extra Futures this yr or wait till subsequent yr and provides myself time to be prepared.
You can be 18 subsequent month, are you going skilled?
As I mentioned I’m enjoying my first skilled event in June and relying on how I do there I’ll resolve if I play extra this yr or not. I’m taking it step-by-step, however hopefully all the things goes based on plan.

What’s your final dream in tennis?
My final dream is to have a excessive ATP rating, however we are going to see how that goes. Additionally it could be a dream to have the ability to play Davis Cup usually for my nation.
What do you love to do in your spare time?
I take pleasure in enjoying loads of sports activities, particularly basketball, which is what I used to play after I was youthful. In my spare time I’ve to review as a result of I’m in college, however after I’m not finding out or enjoying I prefer to exit with my mates or generally I’m going with my dad to the workplace and assist him with work.
The place do you go to high school and what do you research?
I graduated from the Worldwide College of Choueifat in Abu Dhabi final yr and now I’m on the American College in Dubai – majoring in Finance. I hope to complete with a masters diploma sometime.
What’s your favorite event to look at on TV?
My favorite tennis event to look at is Roland Garros as a result of I really like the ambiance there and the group is wonderful and clay is my favorite floor.
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