“Now I am confident that I can defeat the guys ranked in the ATP 500-600” – Manas Dhamne

15-yr old Manas Dhamne spoke to Indian Tennis Daily after qualifying into the main draw and making it to round 2 of the Wimbledon Boys Championships. Manas shared his thoughts on the matches and on his game progression so far. 

Manas is a trainee at the Piatti Tennis Center in Bordighera, Italy and is managed by IMG Tennis. 

Q) Thoughts on the win against WR #47 Hayden Jones today

MD – He is a good player for grass. The game plan was to start solid. It was to first focus on myself, how I start, and then focus on the opponent. It was to start solid, and not miss a lot. He started his service games very well, then I held a tight one and managed to break him the next game. Then the set went good. I also went more aggressive and i was feeling very good today to play.

The second set was also very close. It was just one break and I had to save some break points. I served good on the breakpoints today. So, that was a good match.

Q) Any key moments or patterns from the match today?

MD – I was returning very good today. He was serving good. My service games – I managed to play well today, I didn’t get broken even once. They were close games, not like easy holds. I served well on important points.

Q) You might play the number one seed in the next round. Thoughts on that?

MD – I have played him before actually on clay, which I think is his best surface. He also did final at French Open. He plays a very tough British player who plays very good on grass in the 1st round. Let’s see who wins, I will just enjoy my game.

Q) Are you planning to play doubles as well here?

MD – We are two spots out. I hope we can make it so I get to play doubles. It’s fun and I enjoy playing it.

Q) Thoughts on your first match against Vuk Radjenovic in 1st round of qualifying

MD – I did not know about the game of my first round opponent. I knew him but not his game. Also playing on Grass was a new variable. I was working hard over the last week training on grass. 

I wanted to keep it simple without thinking a lot as I have the game. 

Q) You came here directly from Casablanca playing on Clay…

MD – Yes I came directly and they didn’t give us court to practise before the match for the ITF Juniors J300 Roehampton – so I directly went and played on Grass for the first time, directly in a match. I played Road To Wimbledon U14 a few years ago but it was so long ago that it does not count much. I lost the first set but managed to come back and win that match last week. 

I lost the next match but then I had a good one week training block which got me more prepared for grass. 

Q) Thoughts on your second match against Atakan Karahan. 

MD – I knew Atakan as a person for a long time but did not have knowledge of his game style. Plan was to see a few games and see how he plays and plan accordingly. 

Q) You were 6-2 5-4 40-15 up but it got stretched to a super tiebreak. What went wrong?

MD – In the first match point, I was in a good position to hit a ball but I missed it by a long distance. I got a bit tight and nervous but I am happy that I kept fighting and not thinking about those missed opportunities and found a way to win. 

Q) You played for several weeks in Monastir, losing in the qualies. How did you keep yourself motivated?

MD – Yes I lost in qualies but it was not because I did not have the level. It was just that I was thinking too much or not able to play the way I can. I kept working hard because I knew that I had the level to play. 

I just kept working hard and I got that level in Casablanca, Morocco. Now I am confident that I can defeat the guys ranked in the ATP 500-600 on a regular basis in the main draw. 

Q) On your areas of improvement. 

MD – The big thing is to keep the same high level throughout the entire match. Do not give those 3-4 free points every few games. At this level, the opponents serve big and so if one gives a free game – it is difficult to come back in that set. 

Stroke wise – I am in a good position. I need to focus more on improving physically and maintaining the level through the match. 

Photos of Manas from the qualifying competition

Indian based in the Alps region. Works for an IT firm during the weekdays und auch lernt Deutsch. On the weekends, he can be traced somewhere in the Mountains or on backpacker trips. Is a Social Worker / Activist with a deeper interest for Indian / Swiss tennis from the past year.

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