New England

Player Profile: Jerry Zhu

James Maimonis, Manager, Media & Communications | October 06, 2020

SOUTH WINDSOR, CT – Seventh grader Jerry Zhu, from South Windsor, CT, has been playing Junior Team Tennis for the Ellington Thunderstix since he was 7. Now, 12 years old, Jerry is mature beyond his years, constantly looking at the next step he can take on the court. He is an amazing sport, always seeking to help people both on the court and in his community.


We caught up with Jerry to learn a little bit more about his experience playing Junior Team Tennis.   


What has been the highlight of your JTT career thus far?

Last summer, our team won the Western Massachusetts state tournament. That was the first year I was fully able to compete in the 14U division, and we won! I always enjoy the fun times my friends and I have spending time together on and off the court.


How excited are you to be back playing Junior Team Tennis this year?

I started playing again during the summer. I was so happy to get back onto the court with my friends and compete against other towns and great players.


Do you play tennis elsewhere besides JTT?

Our school does not have a tennis team right now, though I am very excited to play on our high school team this year. 


A few years ago, you wrote a letter asking for the age progression rule to be changed. Talk about why you felt so passionate about that.

The rule was that each age division had a minimum required age to play in that division. I thought this was unfair, as anyone with any sort of skill or playing level higher than their age should be able to play up a division and play against better players. I did not see a reason for this rule, as if you thought you were in a lower skill level, then there would be no problem, just play in the division you fit into. When you have a player that knows they can compete at a higher level, they should be given that opportunity.


*The current rule states that players 10 and under must complete Youth Progression in order to compete at the 14U JTT level. Players may also compete once they have aged out of Youth Progression at 10 years and 11 months. 

Many have called you mature beyond your years. How has that maturity helped you on the court?

This has mainly helped me in my mindset. I am always looking at that next step, that improvement I could make to step my game up another level. It has helped me stay cool on the court during tough matches.


You’re known to be a great sport both on and off the court. How important is sportsmanship to you?

Respect has always been something very important to me. Whether it be on the court or off the court, there may always be someone in need that needs some extra help or motivation. Helping people around our community is always something I'm looking to do.

What are your ultimate tennis goals?

Short term, is just getting on the court as much as I can, since soccer season has started and I'm trying to play whenever I have the time. Long term, I'd like to be able to compete at the state level for Connecticut.  


To learn more about Junior Team Tennis in New England click here.

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