Image Credits: @Nidhitra
Nidhitra Rajmohan has plenty of traits that should catalyze her climb up the Indian women’s tennis ladder. She has a good amount of time to progress and blossom.
Born and bred in Coimbatore, 21-year-old Nidhitra Rajmohan is one of a handful of exceptionally young talents who have been taking Indian women’s tennis by storm of late.
With grit, humility, and a hunger to improve, Nidhitra burnished a deserved reputation with a stellar early-2020 performance, winning the golden double at both the All Indian University Championships and Khelo India University Games, 2020, respectively.
Nidhitra, currently pursuing B.Sc. in Biotech, Biochemistry and Chemistry at St. Francis College for Women, Hyderabad, has also won women’s National Open Tournament, Spain, 2019 and reached semi-final in A-3 level, Germany, 2019.
As an avid fan of the game, Nidhitra lists Novak Djokovic, Serena Williams and Naomi Osaka she looks up to.
Evidence of improved personal traits and statistics show that she is on an upwards trajectory, which can only be of benefit to her ranking points.
At 21, Nidhitra, co-founder of Safe Bee (safety and natural food products) still has a lot of improving to do but has ample time and the ideal environment in which to do so. Another season playing for German club leagues would be beneficial in giving her space to improve on the technical side, whilst testing her capabilities against some of the European’s best in the competition.
Her ambiguous playing style meant she lacked any manifestation of consistency, but her glimmers of brilliance were undeniable. Smart forehand and big battle spirit, Nidhitra has plenty of traits that should catalyze her climb up the Indian women’s tennis ladder. The foundations are there, and Nidhitra has a good amount of time to progress and blossom.
How long have you been on the tennis team and why have you chosen this as your sport?
I started playing tennis at the age of 5. So, it's been 15 to 16 years now. My parents introduced me to tennis, just for me to have fun, as tennis courts were near my house.
So, what has been your biggest challenge or set back while playing tennis?
The biggest challenge for me was to overcome my self-doubts and insecurities, and I was a very shy girl. I used to overthink a lot and I'm happy I learnt how to deal with it and overcome all of that.
What is the role of your coach/parents play in shaping your tennis career?
My dad has been the biggest pillar of support. I can't thank him enough. He has done a lot for me, he didn't know anything about tennis, but until today he helps me in every way possible. My mom has always been a great moral support throughout. When no one believed in me (even when I didn't), they did. Their belief in me will be the greatest gift in my life. Hopefully, I can make both of them proud one day.
All my coaches have helped me a lot too, without them I wouldn't be the tennis player I am today.
Tennis, a sport known for rapid-fire rallies, sprints to the net and fast-twitch lunges, or bathroom break– which one is your favourite.
I love everything that comes with the game of tennis as a whole. My most favourite would be hitting the ball as hard as I can.
How would you describe your playing style, and which tennis player would you compare it to?
I love to be aggressive and I also like to grind when I need to. I wouldn't compare my game style to anyone, but I really admire Novak Djokovic, Serena Williams and Naomi Osaka.
Is it important to have a favourite shot? What was yours then?
It is important to have a weapon you can rely on at all times. My favourite would be my forehands.
What is the best that Tennis has given you?
Tennis has mainly taught me that mistakes are a part of the game and also life and that it all boils down to how we react to it. Tennis has given me so much – happiness, travelling, meeting new people, and great friends. I am so blessed to be able to experience a tennis player's life.
If you were to change any aspects of your game or physical conditioning during your formative years, what would that be?
I would have wanted myself to go into the net and volley more frequently.
How do you balance academics and tennis? Is this difficult?
I love studying and learning so I always find time to study. I feel if you really want to do something you will find time for it. For me, it was not difficult at all to balance academics and tennis, even though I'm studying science (Biotechnology).
What is the difference between your college tennis experience and your school tennis experience?
My college (St. Francis, Hyderabad) has been very supportive of me and many other tennis players. During my schooling days, I was not given that much liberty to travel and play tournaments, they were not as flexible as my college is right now.
Is tennis more of a physical game or mind game? How do you see it?
Tennis is both physical and mental. But when both players are of the same skill and fitness level, then the difference in mental strength gives the edge.
What has been the greatest match moment in your tennis career?
Oh, if I have to pick out one, then it will be a national women's tournament I won in Spain. I had no expectations going into the tournament, as I had 6 straight in the first-round defeats before that tournament. I was so happy for the next three days after winning the tournament, I couldn't stop smiling!
Non-tennis players that you admire the most and why?
I get inspired from a lot of people. Kobe Bryant, Mary Kom – I admire them for their grit, passion towards their sport and competitiveness.
Which celebrity do you want to team up with for a doubles match?
In singles, Roger Federer