France’s Frédéric Fontang has a new Canadian mission.
The 46-year-old former pro, a few months removed from a productive four-year stint working with Vasek Pospisil, announced a new mandate Sunday as he becomes part of Tennis Canada’s high-performance team.
Fontang will split the coaching duties with countryman Guillaume Marx, who oversees the boys’ side of the program, as teenagers Félix Auger-Aliassime and Benjamin Sigouin wrap up their junior careers and take their first steps in the professional ranks.
We could make a few jokes about yet another Frenchman coming over to shape Canada’s tennis future. 🙂
In this case they’ve added an excellent coach and an even better human being, a wise man with a ton of experience to help two promising kids make the always-difficult transition to the pro ranks.
Fontang begins his new job Monday in Bradenton, Fla., where Sigouin, 17, is expected to be the No. 2 seed at the Eddie Herr Grade 1 junior event. Another training centre student, Jack Mingie Lin, also is in the main draw there. Fontang knows that area well, having spent a lot of time there with Pospisil. He won’t relocate to the national centre in Montreal.
The two are entered in the Orange Bowl in Plantation, Fla. the week after that.
Auger-Aliassime, in all likelihood, is all but done with the juniors (he told Open Court at the US Open that he wasn’t expecting to play in Australia). But the ATP’s age limitations might still lead him to play a couple of the big events. Sigouin’s development, even though he’s older, is a bit further down the track and he likely still has some junior tennis to play even as he has begun to dip his big toes into the pro waters this season.
Now, Tennis Canada, about the girls …