***Brayden Schnur has been training in Florida for the past 15 months at great sacrifices by his parents for him to continue his dream of becoming a professional player. His recent success and potential make him one of the most promising Canadian players in the junior scene. His past results include: U12 Provincial Winner, U12 Quarter Finals Orange Bowl, 2 time U14 Provincial Winner, U14 National Finalist, U14 Round of 16 (beat the #6 seed, Eddie Herr), U16 Selections winner at age 14, U16 Eddie Herr (won 3 rounds in qualifying, round 32 in main draw), U16 Semi Finals The American Cup/formerly Prince Cup, U16 National Winner, ITF Winner, Burlington.***
ONcourt: Brayden, why did you make the move to Florida?
Brayden Schnur: The commute from home (Pickering) to school (Markham), to tennis (York University) was wasting 2 – 2.5 hours a day not allowing me to train longer and harder. It was a full-time job driving me around and my mom couldn’t work. I wanted to be training with other kids who had the same goals as me, to be a professional player. I needed stronger competition on the weekends in tournaments, I needed to get more variety of playing International players.
ONcourt: What type of environment do you train in in Florida?
Brayden Schnur: Train in a variety of areas and court conditions (clay and hard). No fancy facilities – just random courts around the neighborhoods where I live. Home, training and school are now 10-15 minutes apart. A lot less time spent traveling in the car. The winter is comfortable but the summer is over 100 degrees F, on court every day. I have a flexible school schedule allowing me to keep a great grade average. Class sizes are small and most of the kids are just like me, trying to be a professional athlete in one sport or another. I train with a private coach, Heath Turpin, Young Gun Elite and 3 other boys. We are a family, very tight, believe in each other and support each other. We’re like brothers. It’s hard work: I’m up at 5:30 every morning, train until 10, school at 10:30-3:30, train till 6, home by 7, eat dinner, homework and bed. Tournaments on weekends. I’ve been making it to the finals in the U18 and winning a few U18’s tourneys in Florida, that’s good because the competition is good. We train for 4-6 weeks in Florida and then we go on the road for 2-3 weeks for ITF’s.
ONcourt: How did you feel about not being selected the past two years for the Montreal Training Center?
Brayden Schnur: I won’t lie and say it didn’t hurt. I don’t understand why but it has all worked out. I was ready and needed to be in that kind of environment, that’s why I moved to Florida.
ONcourt: This year with your present results you should be selected to receive assistance from Tennis Canada. This will mean moving to Montreal, are you ready for that and the next step of your development?
Brayden Schnur: I haven’t been asked to come to Montreal but I have been asked to play on the Junior Davis Cup team, in two weeks, in Merida Mexico. I can’t wait. I played on the U14 team two years ago. Some assistance would be nice from Tennis Canada.
ONcourt: Describe to us the next four years of your tennis career?
Brayden Schnur: As I just won my first ITF, looking forward to many more as well as playing Future’s, as this is just the start.
Want to play the 4 major jr grand slam’s in the next 2 year‘s . The next 4 years is going to be about chasing points, lots of travel and getting bigger and stronger. I’ve been doing well at grade 4 and 5 ITF’s, quarters and some semi’s, so now I need to start some grade 3 and 2’s.
On the weekends, I’m going to start doing Futures, since there are lots around Florida. First step will be working on getting through qualifying of Futures, then once I can get into main draws, work on getting points.
It’s a long road but I’m looking forward to it.