Flynn Pociask won his first Tennis NSW junior title as a six-year-old in the under-8s recently

Improving: Flynn Pociask is only six years old, but he's already an under-8 champion. Photo: Ivan Sajko
Improving: Flynn Pociask is only six years old, but he's already an under-8 champion. Photo: Ivan Sajko

FLYNN Pociask can barely see over the top of the net, but it hasn’t stopped him making an impression.

Less than 12 months after picking up his first tennis racquet, the six-year-old currently leads the way in the the under-8 Tennis NSW Junior Development Series.

A second-round win in Coffs Harbour last weekend elevated him to the top of the standings.

Two weeks before his Coffs Harbour success, the highly-competitive youngster fell at the final hurdle in Port Macquarie in his first-ever tournament.

Mum, Bec, said while most youngsters would have been thrilled to claim a trophy in their first competitive attempt, Flynn was a little different.

“You could just see the disappointment in his eyes and the drive that he was going to go one better,” she said.

“And he did.”

Coach Mark Rawlingson admitted there was a few nervous moments on March 4 when the youngster led 3-0 in the final, only to see that lead evaporate.

In the end, a tie-breaker was required.

“It almost didn’t happen – he led 3-0 and and then his opponent drew level at 3-3 and then he won the tie-breaker,” Rawlingson said.

Not only does Flynn have the look of Spanish superstar Rafael Nadal, he shares the same characteristics on the court.

He plays left-handed and has a dogged determination that sees him return more balls back into play than the majority of players his age.

“He just gets everything back and if you get everything back you give yourself a chance,” Rawlingson said.

Flynn is very easy to teach, understands everything and simply enjoys hitting tennis balls.

Coach Mark Rawlingson

“Flynn is very easy to teach, understands everything and simply enjoys hitting tennis balls.

“He moves like the wind.”

The focus for both coach Rawlingson, mother Bec and father Bernard was simply on encouragement and experience at that level.

“I thought he’d enjoy himself and get some experience,” Rawlingson said.

“He was actually very upset in the first tournament when he got the runner-up.

“We had to try to explain that not many people get a trophy ever, let alone in their first tournament in a Tennis NSW-sanctioned event.

“Right now he is the number one under-8 player in the whole series despite being only six years of age.”

The Tennis NSW series covers the Mid North Coast area from Forster up to Ballina.

“Not many six year old’s go into this sort of competition; normally they’re seven and almost eight year olds,” Rawlingson said.

“Not many six year old’s have that level of skill that Flynn does.”

We had to try to explain that not many people get a trophy ever, let alone in their first tournament in a Tennis NSW-sanctioned event.

Mark Rawlingson

His coach didn’t want to place any unnecessary pressure on the six-year-old after his impressive start, but did state he was better than most his age.

“It’s very hard to say at this age how good he can be, but he’s very good for a six-year-old,” he said.

“Not many six year old’s are that good that quick.

“He will be in the under-8s for the next two years so he’s set the bar pretty high.”

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