Oct 14, 2008

Young Arize needs fund, Malaysia need world class tennis player

I usually skip the local sports news.

Somehow I was 'attracted' to the picture of this young boy along with the title 'Young Arize needs funds to rise on world stage'.

I thought, there you go another young kid who's probably very talented but won't be able to go far in the sports he took.

By the time I started reading the second paragraph, I realized that Arize Elyaas Deen Heshaam is an aspiring young Malaysian tennis player who dreams big (and I bet his dad, Deen Heshaam Abdullah Tan, too!).

Arize's dad said that although Arize was privately sponsored and provided training facilities by the state tennis association and the Malaysian Lawn Tennis Federation (LTAM), it was still inadequate to fund his participation in the circuit.
“I hope there will be sponsors for Arize as he is talented and can make the country proud,” Deen Heshaam said.
Arize, who was ranked second in Malaysia and 650th in the world, won the Riffa View trophy in the Under-14 category in Bahrain last year.

Deen Heshaam was confident that his son could break into the top 100 of the world rankings next year and qualify for bigger tournaments.
“Arize must participate in at least 14 ITF circuits to collect points to qualify for the Grand Slam in 2010,” he said.
He also said that he sparred with Arize at least 6 hours daily and as part of the preparations, his son would also undergo training for one week in France.

Now here are my points.

For young tennis players to be able to compete at the highest level, they need strong financial backing who are mostly from their parents to fund this sport.

For those who doesn't, the financial burden to parents can be immense.

I bet Arize and his dad have been working very hard all these years to reach to a level where based on Arize ranking, he is able to get at least some financial help from LTAM and the state tennis association.

However it's not going to be enough unless Arize is lucky enough to get secure sponsorships from big organisations.

Tennis is quite an expensive sports.The more Arize practice and compete in the international level, the more it costs.

How many people do you think can afford to pay thousands of dollars worth of training costs per year (at least Arize doesn't have to worry about this as he is being trained by his dad), a vast amount of money to fund tournament costs including travelling as well as equipment costs?

And how much does a parent has to exactly fork out on their own to enable their kid to reach a level or ranking where they might be noticed for sponsorship from the private sector?

Realistically, the potential of an aspiring young tennis player will never going to be maximised by personal funding alone thus he/she will never going to receive any financial help along the way. That simply means the kid can bury his/her dream alive.

Arize is not promising us to be the next Asian tennis star or emulate the success of his idol Roger Federer but he and his dad promised to work hard to achieve the best possible results and highest playing level.

Take some risks and offer financial help to make their aspiration and dream come true. Malaysia could have a top 100 player soon.


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