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Roundtable: Scheduling Dual Matches
by James Hill, 1 February 2017
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Dual matches are the heart of the college tennis season, and most of the top teams are just starting their dual match schedule right now. There are plenty of great early-season matchups before conference play begins in earnest. But how do teams come up with their schedules? We put the question to our panel of college tennis coaches:
Q) What is your philosophy when putting together your spring schedule? How far in advance do you start planning?
Manuel Diaz, head coach, Georgia Men
The spring schedule gets put together at least a year in advance. The main thing is to get the players to buy into staying fit during the holidays as much as possible and getting them to play in at least one tournament - so they can hit the road as seamlessly as possible in January.
We only have about ten days from the time they report in January, until our first tournament. As opposed to the fall when they go through a much more extensive pre-season, we go into match play pretty quickly in the winter/spring. It's something that is not ideal for me, but for the first few tournaments, we push our guys to train through match play, so that we can be in top form by mid-February.
Chase Hodges, head coach, Georgia Gwinnett Men and Women
My philosophy is to put a schedule together that challenges my team as much as possible. I want the schedule to allow my players to reach their full potential. I feel that scheduling is one of the most important duties as a head coach, because it can truly shape the success of your program. Usually, I begin planning my schedule twelve to eighteen months in advance, to allow enough preparation to get it right.
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