Robert Dudley, from Dublin, Ireland, will begin his junior season of collegiate tennis action when the Clemson men’s tennis team opens the spring season on Saturday, Jan. 16 against Mercer in Charlotte, N.C. Dudley, a well decorated player, Represented Ireland at the Tri Nations under-18 tournament and the Four Nations Under-14 tournament. Dudley also was a National Under-18 Champion, August 2012 and a National Under-18 Doubles and mixed doubles champion 2012
ClemsonTigers.com caught up with Dudley earlier this week after practice.
Q. Why did you choose Clemson?
A. My coach from Ireland played his collegiate tennis at Clemson, Owen Casey a three time Olympian and Davis Cup Team Member for Ireland. I visited a couple of places when I was looking for a university, when I came here the coaches made all the difference. Also, facilities here are top class.
Q. Why did you choose to come to America and play?
A. I wanted to further my education while practicing tennis. I felt that Clemson put me in the best position to succeed in both aspects.
Q. What do you think your game brings to this team?
A. The attitude I have brings a lot of aggression and that is good for a young team like ours. I also bring a physical presence while I am out on the court.
Q. What are your goals and predictions for this season?
A. As a team our main goal is to make the Sweet 16 in the NCAA Tournament. Training this fall has better prepared us for this spring; we showed how much we care for each other, willing to put the work in to accomplish our goals. This was the best fall I have had since coming to school.
Q. What age did you start playing tennis?
A. I started playing tennis when I was seven years old. My older brother played at a tennis club back home where I would hit against a wall for hours. His coach saw me always practicing and offered to help teach me, that was when I started playing competitively.
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