KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Tennessee men’s tennis head coach Sam Winterbotham announced the addition of Adam Walton and Andrew Rogers, who will be joining the Vols in August as part of the freshman class.
Walton continues the Vols’ tradition of Australian talent as a native of Home Hill, Queensland, with a top ITF world junior ranking of 60. Rogers is a fast-rising talent from Brentwood, Tennessee, and is currently ranked second in the state ratings.
Walton surged up the ITF rankings last year when he won the New Zealand ITF Summer Championships and the Oceania Closed Junior Championships in addition to making the finals of two other international events. He reached the semifinals of a Grade 1 event in Thailand last month and reached the second round of doubles at the Australian Open Junior Championships. He earned his first ATP singles point in October.
In December, he reached the semifinals of the 18U Australian Championship, eventually losing to current Tennessee freshman Scott Jones.
“We’re incredibly excited about Adam,” Tennessee head coach Sam Winterbotham said. “His tennis speaks for itself. He helps us continue the tradition of top Australian juniors developing their skills in our program. He has great experience both on the international stage and domestically. Off the court, Adam is a serious student who looks forward to getting a great education. We feel like we’re getting the full package with Adam.”
Rogers, who attends Brentwood High School, grew up playing hockey and turned his full attention to tennis later than most players, but his game has escalated by leaps and bounds in recent years as evidence by his steady climb up the national rankings.
He recently broke into the top-100 in the Tennis Recruiting Network’s national rankings, currently at a career-best No. 95. His highest ranking in 2016 was No. 142 and his best in 2015 was No. 190. His team reached the Class AAA
“Andrew Rogers is a phenomenal athlete, and his potential is through the roof,” Winterbotham said. “The discipline he’s shown to catch up and overtake his peers is fantastic. We expect him to make an immediate impact. He has quiet confidence and is quite possibly the most passionate recruit about joining the Tennessee tennis program that we’ve ever had.”
AUSTRALIA CONNECTIONS: Tennessee has had at least one player from Australia on the roster every year in 1988. The Vols currently have three on the team: Jones (Perth), senior Jack Schipanski (Adelaide) and freshman Ryan Smith (Toowoomba), who is redshirting this spring. Five Vols from Australia have gone on to earn All-America honors, most recently John-Patrick Smith (2008-11).