7 May 2020

The 'Human Wall' awaits

Darren Bellamy

A regular player in the Cardiff Tennis League since 2017, Darren has earned himself the nickname of the 'Human Wall'! Having learned from his wins and losses over the years, he is ready to get back on court after lockdown, but will his opponents get past him next time?


I started playing tennis against my brother on family holidays when in my teens – back then I used to only serve underarm! I joined Local Tennis Leagues as I wanted to improve my game and raise my fitness levels by playing more regularly. It’s great to be able to play a competitive game against an opponent you are evenly matched with. Everyone plays in a cordial spirit, and I’ve met some great people, some of whom I share friendly banter with both on and off the courts.

Being in the Cardiff league has hugely improved my game and playing different styles of opponent has brought it to a new level. My fitness levels have improved markedly and my nickname in the league is “The Human Wall”. I’m very good at getting the ball back into play, but pretty average at everything else!  

I’ve managed to win Group One three times which, given my level of ability is some achievement! The most important lesson I’ve learned though is that the most talented player doesn’t always win. Tennis is also a mental game. It is rewarding to win a match against a younger, fitter, more skillful rival by working out his or her weakness and exploiting it.

Since lockdown I’ve been shopping once a week and bringing back two weeks’ worth of food! It is times like this you realise how tennis has a positive influence on both physical and mental health. I can’t wait to get back on the courts!

Definitely try to join a local league if you can and if you reach league 1 in the Cardiff league, watch out! The Human Wall will be waiting for you!

When tennis resumes you can join the Cardiff Tennis League here