The Aarrestad family is often on the move from one tennis court to the next with three sisters training and competing: Amari, 9, Naysa, 12, and Calli, 14. All three will be playing in this week’s Prairie Junior Championships at Taylor Tennis Club.
The sisters have been active in many sports, including swimming, track, cross-country running, volleyball and soccer. Calli was 10 years old and Naysa was eight when they took up tennis.
“We were part of a home school group and one of the moms just thought it would be cool if we all started doing tennis,” said Calli. “Our coach’s name was Brian Pound (Norwood Community Centre). We started with him. We really liked it and just kept with the sport.”
Amari was six years old when she got her start in the sport with Tuxedo Tennis Club head pro Nelly Dvornicka. The Aarrestads train with Dvornicka, Shane Nicholls and Robert Kennedy.
“We try to hit every day,” Calli said.
The sisters played a couple of years on the Rogers Rookie Tour (organized by Kennedy) before joining Tennis Manitoba junior tournaments. They have also been coached by Roland Burrell.
“If it weren’t for Robert and Roland we probably wouldn’t be in tennis,” said Naysa.
The Aarrestads play at Tuxedo Tuxedo Tennis Club, Deer Lodge Tennis Club, and on the public courts at Sturgeon Heights Collegiate and on Silver Avenue in St. James. In the winter they play at Taylor Tennis Club and train with Dvornicka at Broadway Neighbourhood Centre.
“The bounce is a bit faster (at Broadway) but we use that for our training,” Calli said.
When asked who their favourite professional players are, Calli went with Simona Halep, Naysa said Roger Federer, and Amari selected both Halep and Federer.
“I liked her (Halep) before she became No. 1 and I was so happy she became No. 1,” Calli said.