BIG STEP: Louis Clark has won a trip to the John Newcombe Tennis Ranch after winning the Champion of Champions at Inverell.
BIG STEP: Louis Clark has won a trip to the John Newcombe Tennis Ranch after winning the Champion of Champions at Inverell. Cathy Adams

Hitting up with gran to US trip

WHAT started out as a game with grandma in the garage has ended up with Lismore tennis player Louis Clark on his way to the United States.

Clark, 14, has just taken out the Medibank Junior Development Series champion of champions tournament in Inverell.

The tournament comprises the best players from the Queensland border down to Port Macquarie and out west to Gunnedah.

The win was enough for him to earn a six-week scholarship to the John Newcombe Tennis Ranch in Texas next year.

"When I was in preschool I used to stay home with my Nan some days and I'd hit in the garage with her," Clark.

"That was where it started and I got on to the court with dad after that.

"I've been playing competition since I was about 10."

Clark is no stranger to success in the Medibank Series.

He has won at under-10s, under-12s and under-14s to progress through to the state finals.

Clark will compete in the state finals again in Sydney in October.

He also hopes the experience in the US might open up opportunities when he finishes High School.

"I've got a few goals I want to achieve and hopefully it can lead to something big," Clark said.

"It will mostly be training and learning about what the pros do and how to get to that level.

"There are few tournaments that I'll play in as well.

"This will give me a bit of experience and maybe I could go back into a College over there eventually."

Clark will find out more information about the trip in the coming weeks when he starts fundraising.

He is trained by Ryan Kebblewhite and Mullumbimby tour player Stephen Gort.



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