He is the first from the country to be selected to participate in the prestigious Australian junior nationals event.
Tennis head coach Malcolm Kajer said Maui was selected based on his performance at the regional tournament in Fiji and the recent Petits Requins du Pacifique tournament in Noumea, New Caledonia.
“This is a great news for Tennis Cook Islands. It’s a milestone achievement for us. I hope this will encourage the upcoming players to step up and work towards getting similar recognition.”
The 11-year-old Maui returned home this week from the Petits Requins du Pacifique tournament where he did exceptionally well alongside fellow team members Jesse Toa, Teakaiti Toa and Moana Une.
Maui and Toa finished runner-up in the boys’ team event while Teakaiti and Une managed fourth place finish in the girls’ team event.
In the individual singles, Maui lost the semi-final match against Australian Andre Filep and played against Japanese Huroto Herai in the third place playoff.
Kajer said after a tough tussle, the national player won the match 7-5, 6-2 to finish third in the individual singles.
“After numerous rounds, the national girls team beat New Zealand in the doubles semis before just going down to Japan in the final,” Kajer said.
“It was a great effort and confidence from the two girls.
“Overall, with the boys coming second in the teams event and the girls finishing fourth along with Maka coming in third in the individual events and also the girls making it to the finals of the double events, this is something that everyone should be proud of.”
Meanwhile, the search for next group of development players begin with the fourth term coaching for players aged four to 12 years, starting on Monday next week at the National Tennis Courts.
Kajer said they were looking at holding some ANZ Stars competition and a six week ANZ mini tennis programme around various schools in Rarotonga.
All enrolments were welcomed, he said. For more information, contact Kajer on 75614.