What you see – Grand Slam Academy of Pune was started for aspiring tennis players by Nitin Kirtane, a name to reckon with in the tennis fraternity. A Wimbledon doubles finalist, Davis cup player, Asian games bronze medalist, Asian cup winner, national level 3 times singles winner, 12 times double winner and a Shivaji Chattrapati awardee are some of the many titles to his credit.
What you get
– Grand Slam Academy
has two centers in Pune, one being the Deccan Gymkhana Club and the other being the Poona Club. Nitin is an ITF (Indian Tennis Federation) level II coach and teaches at three levels - beginner, intermediate and advanced.
The beginner’s level involves basic strokes and techniques like forehand and backhand. The intermediate level is about techniques and practice leading to playing tournaments at the local level. If the coach feels that a particular student is promising then the student and parents are encouraged to let the kid devote about six hours per day to get to the advanced stage. Once the players are at this stage they are asked to play more tournaments at the State, National and even International level depending upon their expertise.
According to Nitin, there is no age limit to pursue the sport as a hobby but if one wants to play at a competitive level the ideal age is between 5 and 5 ½ years of age as the grasping power is more and the rigidness is less.
The Academy encourages good players to attend workshops conducted by the ITF and All India Tennis Association.
The fee structure for the Academy at the beginner’s level starts at Rs. 700 for alternate days and Rs. 1,400 for all days in a month.
Our verdict – The fact that the academy is being run by someone as accomplished as Nitin Kirtane in the field of tennis adds to its credibility. Join the academy if you are really enthusiastic about the sport. You can rest assured about good training. Parking space is available here.
Anytime between – 8.30 AM -12 PM (Deccan Gymkhana)
3 PM – 6 PM (Poona Club)