Shane Devlin was a late starter in tennis but his love for the sport has since made him a fixture of the Taranaki tennis scene. Listing all Shane’s jobs in tennis is no easy task and perhaps he describes it best when he says he is the “liaison for everything” at Rotokare Tennis Club.
In between running Graphix, his well known graphic design, printing and web design business, Shane organises their A Grade interclub teams, business house competition and the locally famous One Set Wonder tournament that kicks off every Taranaki season.
As Club Captain he organizes the club champs every year and handles all printing for club events. Dealing with so many people and teams is no easy task but Shane takes it in his stride.
“I don’t have any trouble with it. I’m pretty up front with people, if you want to be able to be in the team you have to commit to play, everyone knows where I’m coming from and we have built up a good culture over the years.”
Despite his success wrangling so many events, Shane claims he is not a detail person. He fell into the role of club captain more than a decade ago, much in the same way he fell into playing tennis.
Shane was about 30 when a Taranaki Newspapers colleague roped him into a business house team as “an absolute bunny.”
His teams enjoyed the social side of sport but may have picked up the wooden spoon on more than one occasion. After about ten years of social tennis, Shane got the call up to debut in Soffe Cup, Taranaki’s top division, against then reigning champs Manaia.
“I barely won a game that day, but it helped me realise I enjoyed the competitive side as well.”
Shane is now a regular fixture in A Grade interclub and saddles up to play veteran’s tournaments around the country whenever he can.
He is genuinely surprised to have been nominated as a community champion and to have picked up the Volunteer of the Year award from the Taranaki Tennis Association. “I was quite gobsmacked,” he said. “I just like to do my bit to help out.”