Romain Coirault is one of the best French players over 40 years old. We come back to the course and the thoughts of the one who will not participate this weekend in the Nationale 1 Interclubs…

From tennis to padel

“I was ranked -4/6 in tennis, I went to play at an American University in 1998 (just after the Olympics) at Georgia Tech (Atlanta), thanks to a sports scholarship. Even at the time it was a superb springboard to reach the professional level. I had the chance to face notable figures such as James Blake and Mike Bryan. Then I started my professional career at Coca-Cola.

Back in France I was able to evolve within French Tech. In particular, I launched the brand in France as Marketing Director, before taking charge of LALALAB, a mobile photo printing application, which was subsequently bought by Clairefontaine. More recently I founded Big Marius, a headhunting firm specializing in the recruitment of Exec and C-level profiles for startups.”

“My transition from tennis to padel at over 40 years old can be explained by my past as a tennis player, and my passion for racket sports. I was also assimilated 2B in squash when I returned from the US.

I like to believe that I can still compete with the best French players, particularly thanks to my versatility and the fact that I can play on both sides. I was thus able to participate in a P1000 final playing on the right alongside Gauthier Boutel whereas originally I played more on the left. I think that the “high level” in France remains relatively accessible: many good second-round tennis players could reach the French top 30 with a little training.

But this risks becoming more complicated with the emergence of talents from 100% training. padel, such as Yohan Boronad and Timeo Fonteny for example, who are very young and already among the best. We will also see the emergence of high-level ex-tennis players. I am thinking, for example, of Maxime Forcin or Damien Bayard, who managed to rise among the best French players in a very short time, without necessarily having passed the threshold of professionalization in terms of approach and preparation.”

Its 2024 objectives

“Looking ahead to 2024: participating in the Senior+ World Championships with the French team is at the top of my list. Representing my country on the international stage would be an opportunity to measure myself against the best players in the world in my age category. The French +45 Championships are another major objective for me. These competitions are an opportunity to demonstrate that age is not a barrier to competitiveness and performance at the highest level.

Maintaining myself in the French top 50 is also a goal, even if it will be complicated to achieve in the long term.”

Romain Coirault

His opinion on the N1

“Although I find the concept of a team match and the fact of representing a club or a region obviously extremely positive, I find that its implementation deserves to be optimized. We see players who complain about the fact that there are too many Spaniards in N1, but it is these same players who take advantage of the lack of framework in this competition to change clubs every year, and somehow distort gives it. The clubs don't seem to complain about it either. In the end I think that it is the players who are the driving forces behind the arrival of these Spanish players, not necessarily the clubs.

I am obviously disappointed not to play the N1, I did not understand the human or sporting choices of Padel Touch. We experienced an extraordinary adventure a few weeks ago, beating the odds and becoming French vice-champions in the end. Everyone wet their jerseys in an extraordinary atmosphere, but the players represent a club for a weekend, it seems somewhat fleeting and this permanent turnover deserves reflection.

Of course, despite everything, I wish good luck to Padel Touch for this competition, Casa Padel et palavas are going to be very difficult to beat.”

Dorian Massy

New follower of padel, I am fascinated by this dynamic sport which combines strategy and agility. I find in the padel a new passion to explore and share with you on Padel Magazine.