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Making a Racket: Varsity Tennis Clinches the Win

Crisp, cloudy, and perfect for tennis: yesterday’s weather was just the first thing to go right for the Boys’ Varsity Tennis team. 

Wayland High school made the trek to Eastern’s tennis courts for a conference match, and before the game, Nanda Murali – a senior captain on the team – shared his excitement for the match: “I’m feeling really confident. We’re one of the best teams in our conference. I’m just confident that we can rack up another win because our team has done really well this season.” 

Sreejay Ramakrishnan (’23) plays against Wayland.

Sreejay Ramakrishnan (‘23) added that “we’ve won our last five [conference] matches in a row.” Not only has the Varsity team not lost a conference match yet this season, but within each match, they’ve swept their opponents 8-0. How have they been able to keep this perfect record? They will tell you the key: teamwork.

While teamwork is important in all aspects of tennis, it is especially vital in doubles. “In doubles,” Nanda explained, “there’s a lot more action and there’s a lot more teamwork and collaboration that goes on.” Brett Martin (‘22), who plays one doubles for Eastern, shared his favorite part. “I like having a teammate. If I’m having a not-so-great day [my partner] is there to support me.” Brett appreciates how his partner, Devin Kozal (‘24), “can be there to lift me up if I’m getting angry at myself.” Nanda then added, “with a partner, yes you have more mental support, but at the same time, you can’t let yourself get down because someone else is there with you.”

Captain Nanda Murali (’22) warms up before the match.

Besides teamwork, the team’s success also comes from strong leadership. 

Coach Perlmutter emphasized the importance of senior leadership on and off the court. “It’s very important for team management, I’ll seek their input and I’ll often take it.”

All of the seniors are team leaders and contribute to the strength of the program. “We have four seniors this year” Nanda comments “Aidan Burkley [and I] are captains. We also have Brett Martin and Grant Mcfarland and, because they’re seniors and such big role models on this team, they’re assistant captains.”

Captain Aidan Burkley (’22) takes a ball from the baseline.

For most of us, the end of one sports season is only a break until it rolls around the next year. Sadly for seniors, this is not the case. When asked how it felt to be a senior, Brett Martin observed that the experience is mostly the same “we all still treat each other really well. The only thing, at least in the back of my mind, is the end of the season- I don’t really want to think about [it].” 

Thankfully, Eastern still has a good portion of the tennis season yet to come. And if the team finishes off their next matches like they did the Wayland match, 8-0 once again, they’ll be in a strong spot for whatever comes next.

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