A young tennis player who used to live in Paraparaumu Beach has won his age group in Australia's largest junior tennis tournament.

Cody Atkinson, 9, won the Rod Laver gold rated national 10 and under boys tournament in both singles and doubles held at the Queensland Tennis Centre in Brisbane.

Cody Atkinson after winning the singles and doubles at the Rod Laver national 10 and under boys tournament. The plate is for the doubles and the Queensland shaped trophy for the singles.
Cody Atkinson after winning the singles and doubles at the Rod Laver national 10 and under boys tournament. The plate is for the doubles and the Queensland shaped trophy for the singles.

He beat boys older than him and didn't drop a set in his singles performance.

Cody went into the main tournament, after a physically and mentally demanding lead-in tournament, hoping to win it.

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Each day in the weeks leading up to it he would place post-it notes on his vision wall to keep him motivated; the wall was surrounded by photographs of his tennis idols too.

"I was very happy," he said regarding the singles and doubles victory [his doubles partner was Jack White].

"I had a few tears in my eyes."

Cody's father Jamie Atkinson, who is his coach, said his son's form beforehand wasn't too good but "once he started the tournament he just lifted to another level".

"It was really good to see."

And he encouraged his son to simply focus on playing without overthinking the result.

"My words of encouragement, as his coach, is 'no fear' and to not be afraid of losing because I know what nerves can do to performance, so try not to think about the situation so much and just go out there and place tennis."

Proud mother Amy Atkinson said she was "a wreck" on the day of the finals so stayed home with her daughter Greer, 11, to prevent Cody becoming unnerved by her emotions.

She was very impressed with Cody's achievement noting he was "very self-driven".

The Atkinson family has had a busy few years, especially relocating to Broadbeach on the Gold Coast.

It all started in July 2016 during a holiday when Cody's grandfather John O'Sullivan took the youngster to Queens Park Tennis, Southport, to hit a few balls.

Cody, who has been involved in the game all his life because of his father's extensive coaching background, impressed the club a lot.

John and his wife Rose would take Cody back to the area for term four so he could get more tennis training.

By early the next year Cody was keen to stay on and who could blame him — the long trips to Lower Hutt for training, which were often interrupted by wet weather, wasn't exactly appealing.

Before long Jamie, Amy, Greer and Cody were living in Broadbeach, especially as Tennis Plus at Queens Park Tennis offered to sponsor Cody and gave Jamie a coaching position at the club.

Cody has been selected into Tennis Australia's national academy, which is a high performance programme, as well as the under 12 Queensland State Presidents team.

He has a long-term goal.

"Winning a grand slam."