Tennis: Camden Haven High School students Corey and Krystal Clarke to compete in Fiji

KRYSTAL and Corey Clarke will test themselves against some of the best tennis players from Fiji, Australia, New Zealand and the Solomon Islands in Fiji this week.

The Camden Haven duo were selected by Tennis Australia to compete at the Oceania Junior Championships after a strong showing on the Gold Coast last month.

16-year-old Corey is currently ranked in the top 20 in Australia in his age group, while 15-year-old sister Krystal is ranked number two.

Tennis Australia selected 11 boys and 11 girls to represent the country.

Corey played rugby league until he was seven when he was hit by a car and suffered a fractured tibia.

He was then told he couldn’t play contact sport, so took up tennis.

Father, Gary, said the talented teenager is believed to be a better player at the age of 12 than former Australian Davis Cup player Jason Stoltenberg.

“Corey is the most naturally talented player out of him and Krystal, but he doesn’t believe in it,” he said.

“Krystal works really hard and is probably the better chance.”

Consistent performances at International Tennis Federation events will keep the two in the eyes of national selectors.

“They have had good results in most age-based tournaments around the country and that gets them recognised by Tennis Australia,” Mr Clarke said.

“They don’t have the benefit of being in Sydney and places like that where they are always in front of people.

“By playing these ITF tournaments you get ranking points which then can give you the opportunity to perform at junior grand slam events.”

The tournament in Fiji is similar to a round-robin style where players will have a chance to compete against most other players.

“It is done by what they call a compass draw,” Mr Clarke said.

“So you have first round losers drop down to another pool and so on so you have a chance to see where you are ranked at the end of it.

“It’s a bit different to other ITF events which are knockout and if you lose you pack up and go home.”

Selection in the Fiji tournament didn’t come as a surprise after previous strong performances.

“They knew they were half a chance because they have jumped up to that level.”

Being left-handers, it is little surprise Corey bases his game around Rafael Nadal, while Krystal idolises Angelique Kerber.


Discuss "Australian honours for Clarke duo | photos"

Please note: All comments made or shown here are bound by the Online Discussion Terms & Conditions.