HKTA turns to China

THE Hong Kong Tennis Association have hired a Chinese coach to take over the duties of departing coaching director Michael Walker.

Executive secretary Janet Hardisty said the association had decided not to hire a new coaching director, but create a new position to oversee development programmes.

She said they had already hired an experienced local Chinese to take up the position of development coaching administrator, who will start his duties before the end of the year.

Walker, the HKTA's coaching director for the past two years, returns to Britain to guide a new development programme there.

Said Hardisty: 'We will not hire a new coaching director, but we will hire a local Chinese who will look after the grassroots and junior development. He will be starting work shortly.' The Hong Kong Sports Institute, under tennis co-ordinator Mark Bailey, will continue to steer the elite players while the association are more concerned with development at grassroots level.

Hardisty would not reveal the identity of the new coach, but she said he was a former player who had progressed through the HKTA's coach education programme.

Tennis is one of the sports supported by the Institute.