Sanam Singh won a tennis doubles gold in his first Asian games at Ghoungzhou just over a year ago. One wouldn’t be surprised if the name fails to elicit too much of a response away from the tennis fraternity.
Setting him apart
Unlike most Indian players, the Asian Games doubles gold medalist has quick feet. Thus, it gives him an advantage when he manages to reach to the ball a split second faster than usual. What’s commendable is that Sanam is taking pains to cultivate his strength. He trains with good friend Somdev Devvarman's trainer Milos Galecic in the US to attain lower body strength and fitness.
Further, Sanam has quick hands and meets the ball far earlier than most of our lot. This in turn cuts down the reaction time available to his opponent.
The one thing the player has to make do with is his height. Sanam stands at 5’8” and that’s no asset in tennis. Considered short by most, it needn't be a deterrent for the youngster. After all, Michael Chang was only an inch taller and yet has a Grand Slam to his credit! But what Sanam does need to focus on this season is to develop a major weapon. He has the usual strokes but that one masterstroke is still lacking which will help him carve a niche in the sport.
2012 has to be all about garnering points for this youngster even though rankings never paint a true picture. Currently at No. 887 in the ATP list, Sanam must gain enough points to be considered for the Davis Cup squad.
Already hailed as a promising player by Somdev, Sanam, still has a long way to go. However, his off-court work ethic does give cause for optimism. After all, on the pro tour all players have the skill, it's the legs that separate the journeymen from the top stars.