Regional Player Development Centre

Commit Develop Compete Repeat

Summer 2023 - Click to see our RPDC Head Coach Richard Irwin talking to the BBC at the Junior Nationals hosted by The West Hants Club


The LTA awarded The West Hants Club "Regional Player Development Centre" status has been renewed  in 2023!  R.P.D.Cs are carefully selected venues which provide high level coaching, nurturing promising juniors to reach their tennis potential on an international level.  There are only a few in the UK and we are very proud to have been awarded this status.  Our RPDC is supported by Talbot Heath and Bournemouth Collegiate schools.  


The objective of The West Hants Club RPDC is to produce players who are capable of competing and winning at an International level with a view of progressing along the LTA Player Pathway to be selected for the National Academy.  With an experienced Head Coach who has first-hand knowledge of playing on the ATP Tour as well as coaching players who have excelled within the National, Tennis Europe, ITF and now WTA/ATP circuits, the aim is a realistic one and we take a long term view of players’ development.  The standards set at the RPDC replicates the requirements the players will need to understand and execute, in order to achieve success at any of the above. 


Previous players who have come from the Coaching team include current GB Women's number 2 Jodie Burrage, former TE number 1 Jack Pinnington Jones as well as other junior Grand Slam players including Toby Samuel, Lauryn John-Baptises, Esther Adeshina and Erin Richardson.


Keep scrolling to read more about these successful players and our RPDC!


Jodie Burrage

Proudest Moment – Being in the Fed Cup team. Representing your country and a team has always been a massive thing for me. Onn part with that is playing my first ladies Wimbledon in 2021. Both of these came after 3 ankle operations too where I wasn’t sure I’d still be playing after my third one. 


Best West Hants Memory – I used to love the sessions where all of the players mixed in so everyone was there and we did a load of points/games. Would be so fun especially when I was younger getting to play with the older ones so I always felt lucky and this was something I loved.


Jack Pinnington- Jones


Proudest Moment – Winning my 1st round in the men's qualifying at Wimbledon.


Best West Hants Memory – When Toby, Erin, Esther and I were all at Junior Wimbledon. 


Toby Samuel

Proudest moment – Playing my first ATP tournament in Surbiton. I’ve had better results and making the semi finals of Junior Wimbledon was a big one, but making this tournament helps me realise that I’m on the right track to becoming a top player in the world.  


Best West Hants Memory – Love the social events at the end of the terms where I got to hang out with all of the players and coaches doing fun things, and especially the food at the end.  


Lauryn-John Baptiste

Proudest Moment – Being ranked number 1 in doubles for a division 1 college tennis in America and becoming a 2 x All American! 


Best West Hants Memory – Winning the Team Tennis National title in 2014 and being part of the doubles pair that won the shoot out to claim the title! 


Esther Adeshina

Proudest Moment - Either competing at Junior Wimbledon, or when I was selected to play for Great Britain for the first time at the age of 11 in Austria.


Best West Hants Memory - I used to love the termly socials we did. We'd always pick a fun activity and then have some dinner together and was so nice spending time with everyone away from the tennis court.


Erin Richardson

Proudest Moment-  Winning my 1st Round Singles match at Junior Wimbledon. It felt like the accumulation of pretty much everything I’d worked for.


Best West Hants Memory - It was the year we won 5 national team tennis titles! It was an amazing achievement and really fun experience and I remember just supporting each other and a big team dinner at Pizza Express!


RPDC Head Coach – Richard Irwin




RPDC Assistant Coach – Jazzamay Drew





Director of Tennis – James White




What is the purpose of RPDCs?

To provide inspiring and transformational development environments for our next generation of pro players. Through the delivery of world class coaching and support, these centres will increase the number of nationally relevant players aged 10+, who can transition effectively to the International Junior Stage of the LTA Player Pathway by 14. 



Who are they for and how are players selected? 

RPDCs are for players aged 10 to 14 (exceptional younger players may be considered on a case-by-case basis in agreement with the LTA). 

The RPDC Player Selection Policy is available here. 

Please note the National Pathway List has been disbanded and the published RPDC Player Selection policy will be used for all RPDC selections for September 2023 onwards. 



Player selection process / application process – selection days/open days

Upon the LTA releasing the longlist of players who are eligible to attend an RPDC, we will be opening our doors for players to come and experience what The West Hants Club RPDC has to offer. 


Any players that are interested in joining, will be invited to attend weekly open sessions.  Interested players will need to attend at least 3 open sessions (dates/times TBC).  These days will involve both on court and S&C training and during one of the visits, an individual player/parent meeting will be held. 


Regarding player selection, The West Hants Club RPDC will follow a similar route to the LTA Guidelines.  This is taking in to account where players are ranked nationally via their UTR and National Coach Nominations. 


The guidelines for the UTR is: 

  • 11U – Top 24 in GB based upon their UTR  
  • 12U – Top 20 in GB based upon their UTR 
  • 13U – Top 16 in GB based upon their UTR 


At The West Hants Club RPDC, our biggest desirable from any selected players, is that their character and mindset towards Tennis replicates our Cultural Pillars (see below).  Whilst players may tick all the boxes from an outcome perspective, the team of coaches want to work with hard working, motivated players with a Commit, Develop, Compete, Repeat mindset.   

Whilst there is no definitive measure for this, any decisions based on this aspect, will be thoroughly thought out and discussed in detail meaning it is not taken lightly. 


The above will also apply for any “Re-selection”. 


Estimated Dates for the process are listed below: 

  • 24th April – LTA Longlist Released 
  • 1st May – All interested players are provided with dates of open sessions to attend 
  • 31st May – Re-Selected Players confirmed 
  • 30th June – Newly Selected Players confirmed 


The West Hants Club RPDC full time programme is based on a 16 hour week training schedule.  


One of our unique selling points is that we individualise all of the players schedules working their tennis around their academic timetable and not in set blocks throughout the day. 


Whilst the use of the 16 hours is flexible, the overall structure we look to provide are: 

  • 3 x Individual Tennis 
  • 9 x Group Tennis (no more than 1:3 coach:player ratio in a group) 
  • 4 x S&C (Individual S&C included) 


Click here for the 2024 Selection re selection policy 


Tournament Support

We will have an RPDC Coach present at all ITF’s, TE’s, G1 and G2 events.   

The cost of this is additional to the RPDC Programme but is purely a contribution to the coaches expenses and not their time.  On average, during 2020/21 and 2021/22 years, this worked out £25 per player per day.  



We have two local schools that we link with who offer incredible understanding of the commitment required to the tennis programme.  Both provide boarding and offer scholarships towards the academic fees. 


For girls, the school is Talbot Heath


For boys, the school is Bournemouth Collegiate School (BCS) 


Access Players are welcomed however the package will differ slightly and be discussed based on the individual’s circumstances. 


Pillars of RPDC – Coaching philosophy

Commit - Players demonstrate a high level of motivation and drive in leading their programmes whilst taking ownership to ensure they are organised and fully prepared with an ‘all-in’ mindset. 


Develop - Players to be trainable and seek to acquire knowledge in all forms possible, being students of the game both on and off the court. 


Compete - Players to display desire, resilience and perseverance and be able to handle any situation that is thrown at them. 


Repeat - Players to have the discipline to consistently perform professional habits on and off the court in a relentless manner. 



Strength & Conditioning

As with the Tennis programme, the club is in an extremely strong position with this dedicated S&C team of being able to meet and exceed the requirements outlined for RPDC players. 

Once the Player List is confirmed, the finer details will be assessed and we can schedule the allocated slots for any Group S&C.  


The scheduling of S&C sessions will be coordinated in conjunction with tennis sessions in order to optimise the time that the players will spend at the club. These sessions will be scheduled either before or after the tennis sessions, subject to the specific focus of any particular session and to optimise the desired outcome.  


Individual S&C will be available for all players on the programme to access. Whilst players who live in closer proximity to the club may have more freedom to schedule this, we would be looking at how we ensure all players benefit from this opportunity. 


As part of the RPDC Programme, the players will access the following: 


•  INDIVIDUAL PHYSIO SCREENING (Annually) - This is updated throughout the year as players achieve milestones set.


•  PHYSICAL TRAINING BLOCK - During the month of September, each player will undergo a Physical Training Block whereby an increased proportion of the players training time is allocated to S&C. The main focus is on any issues that are flagged from their screening and endurance. We strive for West Hants players to be the fittest in the Country. 


•  FITNESS TESTING - Fitness Testing to be carried out 3 times per year. 


•  PROGRAMME CREATION - Players’ Individual S&C programme are created using their screening results, fitness test results and personal progress. 


•  WARM UP & EXPECTATIONS - All of our RPDC players are expected to be early for all sessions and perform the prescribed warm up independently once it has be taught. 


•  HEIGHT & WEIGHT TRACKING - Height and Weight is tracked regularly to give an indication of Peak Height Velocity (PHV) and Predicted Adult Height (PAH). 



The West Hants Club prioritises the wellbeing of all children and adults at risk, promoting safeguarding in our club at all the events we run and in all our programmes. Whilst it is compulsory for all coaches to have their DBS requirements up to date, Sarah Jane Wright is our Safeguarding and Welfare Officer for the club. Our Safeguarding Policy minimises risk and aims to deliver a positive experience for everyone and responds appropriately to all safeguarding concerns and disclosures. 


Our policies for all the following can be found here:

• The Safeguarding Policy 

• The Whistleblowing Policy 

• The Diversity and Inclusion Policy 

• The Concern Reporting Form 

• The Online Safety & Communication Policy 

• The Anti-Bullying Policy 

• LTA Recording and Publishing Images Policy 


Anti-Doping – Clean Tennis


The West Hants Club follows Anti-Doping Clean Tennis regulations and our Director of Tennis, James White is our Point of Contact for Clean Tennis.   More information regarding Anti-Doping regulations can be found here.



Tennis – The West Hants Club has a total of 20 courts consisting of: 

- 10 American Clay (2 under a bubble in the Winter) 

- 2 outdoor Acrylic (under a bubble in the Winter) 

- 4 Indoor Acrylic  

- 4 Artificial Grass 

RPDC players also have access to Bournemouth Gardens – A club under The West Hants Umbrella which has 3 outdoor acrylic courts with a bubble over them in the winter. 

Strength and Conditioning – The RPDC players will also benefit from having priority use for all sessions (individual/ group/after school) of our bespoke gym built primarily for performance tennis S&C sessions. In this gym, players have access to a 20-metre running track through the middle, Olympic lifting platforms, squat racks and a range of other functional training equipment. 

Physio – Over the past couple of years, this link and relationship has grown and is one of which the club is very proud. This arrangement involves a monthly meeting with the lead physio who is assigned to the RPDC Programme in addition to our coaching team. 


Our News & Events

Our latest news and events can be found here! Our social channels are also kept up to date.


Contact details


Richard Irwin – 

James White –