P: (07) 49 577 636 |  M:  0429 820 912  | E:pioneertennismackay@gmail.com

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OUR COACHES

STEVEN MERKER

Head Coach / Centre Manager

Tennis Australia Accredited Coach - Junior Development

Steve hails from Warra, a small town on the Darling Downs in Queensland.  He has coached all areas of the game from beginners through to young competitors aiming to make it on the satellite level of tennis.  After travelling overseas to coach, Steve returned home to the Darling Downs to run a successful coaching program called "Tennis United", but moved to Katherine in 2002 to work for Tennis Northern Territory as a Participation Leader.  In 2007, Steve moved to Ingham in North Queensland where he was the Club coach up until 2014 when he accepted a position to become the Head Coach of Pioneer Tennis.

Steve's current position sees him advise the Club on new initiatives and improve on programming and oversees all the coaching offered at the Club.

ALLAN HARRIS

Senior Coach / Mentor Coach

Tennis Australia Accredited Coach - Level 2 Club Pro

Tennis Australia Referee - Level 2

Former Tennis QLD Board Member

Allan is a born and bred Mackay local and has extensive knowledge of the game, both on and off the court.  Throughout his 40 years working in tennis, Allan has been a participation leader for Tennis QLD, a board member with Tennis QLD, been involved in the administration level of the sport, a Tennis Australia Referee and has run countless tournaments of all levels.

Allan has coached a number of top ranked juniors with the most notable being Nicole Pratt who obtained a career high singles ranking of 35 in the world.  Nicole was also a valuable member of the Federation Cup Team and currently holds the position of the Australian Women's Tennis Coach.

DAVID "LEFTY" WRIGHT

Senior Coach 

Tennis Australia Accredited Coach - Level 2 Club Pro

Tennis Australia Referee 

Lefty is a local Mackay boy and grew up playing tennis on the family farm.  He was a promising State junior player before leaving school and beginning work in the motor industry and the sugar industry.

As a long serving full time coach at Pioneer Tennis, Lefty has also been coaching at Sarina for many years and also coaches throughout the district at a number of schools. 

Lefty is considered one of the top Tournament Directors in the State and has run countless Mid North Open / Age Titles in Mackay.  

JANE SHEPHERD

Junior Development Coach

Tennis Australia Accredited Coach - Junior Development

Jane joined the Pioneer Tennis coaching team in 2016 and has since moved into a full time role at the Club.  Jane hails from country NSW and attended College in America where she participated in their tennis program.

As the Club's main coach who oversees the "Learn & Play" lessons, Jane also services a collection of country schools in the Mackay district throughout the week.

KATIE SHEPHERD

Junior Development Coach / Play Coordinator

Tennis Australia Accredited Coach - Junior Development

Katie gained her coaching qualification in 2018 and has been an integral part of assisting the more senior coaches in their lessons.  In 2019 Katie will be completing a Certificate III in Business Administration while being the "Play" coordinator at the Club.  Katie will also manage all the weekly competitions and administration / membership enquiries.