Congratulations to Mika Ishikawa (ranked #19) and Sarah Hunter (ranked #23) on being named to the 2015 National High Performance Wheelchair Tennis program. The program is part of the athlete pathway and is designed for those on track for the Para Pan Am Games, Paralympic Games, World Team Cup and ITF rankings.
The 8 nominated athletes (4 men and 4 quad players) will benefit from financial assistance as well as coaching, training and sport science support. Three of last year’s development team players (Mika Ishikawa, Jean Francois Sylvestre and Rob Shaw) have earned their sports to the 2015 team through outstanding performances during the 2014 season.
The athletes are currently in full preparation mode for the final stretch of the qualification for Para Pan Am Games in Toronto (August) as well as the start to the qualification for the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. Players will be heading to tournaments in Europe, South America, USA as well as Canada starting in February to try and collect coveted world ranking points.
Other highlights this season include the Americas qualification tournament for the BNP Paribas World Team Cup in Baranquillo, Columbia (March) for the men’s team as well as the World Team Cup main event in Antalya, Turkey (May), for which the quad team has already secured direct qualification.
“ We are happy to see the National Program thrive. Through our support we hope to provide the best possible framework for our athletes to assist them to reach their potential and perform to the best of their abilities in this Pre-Paralympic and Para Pan Am Season” says Janet Petras, Director of wheelchair tennis for Tennis Canada.