25 Sep 2013

Captains' Corner - Louise Pleming and Elizma Nortje


By Sandra Harwitt

On Wednesday, Junior Fed Cup by BNP Paribas captains Louise Pleming and Elizma Nortje became adversaries as Australia played Namibia. Heading into the outing there was no denying that Australia was the favored team with Sara Tomic, the sister of Top 50 ATP player Bernard Tomic, Priscilla Hon and Naiktha Bains coming to the Junior Fed Cup Finals with worldly experience.

In contrast, Namibians Lize Elfrida Moolman, Lesedi Sheya Jacobs and Jessica Riedel were not only the first Namibian team to play in this prestigious international competition, but this is the first time any of them have travelled outside of the African continent. At the conclusion of two days of action, Australia have won both of their ties and Namibia lost both of their outings.

Both Pleming and Nortje had experience on the pro tour -- Norjte also graduated from university in San Diego, California -- so they have a wealth of experience to offer their players and, in the spirit of sportsmanship both captains had words of wisdom and encouragement for their own players as well as for the girls on the other team.

After the tie was decided 3-0 for Australia -- Hon defeated Moolman 61 61, Tomic defeated Jacobs 76(4) 62 and Bains/Tomic defeated Jacobs/Moolman 62 62 -- both teams came together in the spirit of friendship. The girls all hung out courtside, posing for pictures and chatting, and the two captains hugged and chatted with each other.

Pleming and Nortje then came together to chat with the Captains’ Corner. They both had pertinent viewpoints to put forth regarding playing, coaching, fostering the right attitude, and the need for the desire to play tennis to come from within and not from outside sources. 

FYI: Elizma Nortje hosts another business called Tennis Safaris Namibia that incorporates tennis into a safari trip of a lifetime. A number of well-known players will be participating in her upcoming safari tennis trips, including Mats Wilander, who owns Wilander on Wheels, but will be taking a group on Wilander on Wings as they fly to different locations. Pat Cash, Roger Rasheed and Jeremy Bates will also be hooking up with Tennis Safaris Namibia.  

Junior Fed Cup - Captains Elizma Nortje (NAM) and Louise Pleming (AUS)