Jaykob on the rise
WITH silverware to his name and one of Australia's top players in his corner, fast-rising tennis ace Jaykob Rowe could be tough to stop in 2014.
The Goonellabah player has enjoyed a successful year on the court, climbing about 600 places in the national rankings.
Jaykob earned a berth alongside some of the state's best young players and enjoyed success at the recent Miami junior tournament.
The 17-year-old, who will move up to senior Australian Money Tournament level next year, said he now had a taste for winning.
"It was only a small trophy (from Miami), but it was great to win it," he said.
"My emotions didn't really hit me until the next day when I looked at the trophy and said, 'I won it'.
"Next year I will be facing people older than me. They are going to be bigger than me in every single way.
"It will be tough, but I can't wait."
Jaykob started 2013 ranked about 1500 nationally but has soared to about 900 after a notable year.
Earlier this year he defied a broken finger to qualify for the Medibank Junior Development Series state titles.
He also recently started being coached by Lismore's Brendan Moore, one of the country's top players.
"He has taught me how to have lots of patience and not get angry on the court," Jaykob said.
"He has loads of techniques to help my game dramatically."
Right-hander Jaykob took up tennis about nine years ago and said the sport meant everything to him.
"It's my life now," he said.
"I wake up and I can't wait to get on the tennis court and hit balls.
"It's a really fun sport to play. You can talk to people non-stop and it's really fun.
"I like how it's different to other sports. When you are out there, you are by yourself. I love it."