Tennis begins with win down the line

Although the regular season for Diamond Bar High School boys tennis has not yet begun, the Brahmas’ preseason games signal a strong start to the season. 

Out of the five preseason games the team played, the team’s only loss was their first match against Beckman High School, 6-2. After the game, the team viewed  the loss as a source of motivation for teammates to grow closer off the court. According to senior varsity captain Darren Lo, the doubles players are working on forming stronger bonds with each other in order to perform better in the future.

“We weren’t able to fully click-in very well,” he said. “Building team chemistry just takes time, just playing different games and seeing how your partner hits and just learning how you and your partner’s different skills can coexist on the court.” 

Senior co-captain Akilan Arunachalam also noticed that the team as a whole is not aggressive in their matches. 

“Sometimes we start really slow,” Arunachalam said. “I think [in] two of our last four matches, we were losing in the beginning and we came back to win. It’s going to work against some teams, but against the really good teams, if we slack off in the beginning we’re going to be screwed.”

However, after going on a four-game winning streak against El Dorado, Orange Lutheran, Ayala and Glendora later on in preseason, Lo observed that the team has made improvements in regards to remaining calm while performing under pressure. To prepare for these matches, the Brahmas practiced positioning on the court for doubles as well as volleying at the net in order to secure points. 

Some improvements head coach Troy Wong and assistant coach Jay Bala want to make with the team relate to encouraging the doubles players, such as sophomoreS Han Lee and Lawrence Deng, and singles, sophomore Abhay Hiriyur and senior Aadarsh Belliganud, to be more assertive on the court. According to the coaches, they are  working to help the doubles players be more consistent in their playing. In addition, they also want to promote good sportsmanship and positivity among the Brahmas.

“We want [the doubles] always moving forward, moving toward the net,” Wong said. “And for our singles, we want them to remain aggressive, to not be passive; to not become too defensive but remain positive in their mindset.”

The team’s  next match will be against Claremont on March 25. All other games past this point are cancelled due to the coronavirus.