Women’s tennis in the State in the past few years had been stagnant with no fresh talent coming up through the ranks. The stars who had shown promise had faded away and the game was searching for a new star when Trisha Vinod burst into the scene with a string of consistent performances in the past two seasons.
At the recently concluded State senior tennis tournament at the Trivandrum Tennis Club, Trisha completed a triple triumph. The 15-year-old braved an injury to win the women’s singles, women’s doubles, and under-18 singles titles in the State championship.
Currently ranked 603 in the world, Trisha has set her sights on bigger goals.
Trisha started playing tennis at the age of eight and started taking part regularly in tournaments three years ago. She shifted her residence to Kerala from Bengaluru in order to represent the State in the National Games which was hosted by Kerala in 2015.
Her mother Divya Vijayan, who accompanies Trisha to tournaments, said the decision to relocate to Kerala was right as it gave her daughter opportunities to play in tournaments and train with her personal coach Sanjay Kumar who is based in Thiruvananthapuram.
Trisha, who is doing her Class X under the National Institute of Open Schooling programme, regularly competes in AITA tournaments outside the State and has quite a few podium finishes in these tournaments. Trisha, who admires world number two Garbine Muguruza, said her ultimate dream was to play in Grand Slam events.
Early this year, she tried her luck in the qualifying tournament for the Junior French Open. At present she aims to break into the country’s top 10. She is currently ranked number 17 in the country in the under-18 category and plays in ITF tournaments to improve her world rankings.
Sanjay Kumar, a former State player, has high hopes for his ward. “She can hit the ball flat and hard and can impart top spin to it. She has huge potential and is hard working too. If she can improve her fitness level, she can surely reach the next level,” said Sanjay.