Meet the team

The National Academy programme will be led by a team of world class coaches, sport science/medicine practitioners and performance lifestyle and education experts

Helen Reesby

Director of Tennis

Prior to her appointment as Director of Tennis at Loughborough University in June 2015, Helen worked for the Lawn Tennis Association for over 10 years as National Academy Coach, U14 Great Britain Age Group Captain and the National Girls Junior Coach for the latter 8 years.

Helen is also an experienced presenter and educator; including presenting at Grand Slam Conferences, nationwide delivery of the Female Tennis Journey, Sports Science symposiums, Business of Tennis Conferences and lecturing on Sports Science/Management degrees.

Helen is an LTA Master Performance Coach with a BSc in Sports Science from Loughborough University.  Her significant involvement in the world of high performance tennis, in addition to her background as a former professional player enables Helen to bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the National Tennis Academy.  Helen will lead and work with the team to deliver a programme which sets global standards for an individualised and integrated approach to tennis development.

Nick Cavaday

National Academy Head Coach

Nick took up his role as Head Coach of the Loughborough University National Tennis Academy at the start of this year.  Nick has previously overseen the progress of ATP players such as Aljaz Bedene and British Davis Cup winner Dominic Inglot. He has also enjoyed great success with British players across the whole pathway in singles and doubles at both senior and junior level.

In his time working with Bedene, Nick oversaw a number of career firsts for the 28 year old. Bedene reached two ATP world tour finals and reached the 3rd round of Wimbledon for the first time, defeating Ivo Karlovic 8-6 in the 5th set in the opening round. During the clay court season, Bedene embarked on a 16 match winning streak, culminating in an appearance in the final of the ATP 250 event in Budapest. In their time working together, Bedene reached a career high ATP world ranking of number 43.

In Nick’s time working with Dominic Inglot, the British Davis cup winner reached the US Open semi-finals, represented GB at the Olympics and reached a career high ranking of world number 18. Inglot also reached the quarter-finals of the Australian Open, defeating the world number 1 team of Bob and Mike Bryan in straight sets in round 3.

Nick is an LTA Master Performance Coach with an undergraduate degree in Psychology.  In his role as Head Coach of the Loughborough University National Tennis Academy, he will be delivering an innovative and exciting, pro level training environment which nurtures the person, performer and the tennis player to excel on the international stage.

Louis Cayer

Performance Advisor – Loughborough University National Tennis Centre

Louis is a world class high performance coach and coach educator, continuing to have and having had unprecedented success with ATP/WTA/ITF singles and doubles players for over 30 years. 

  • 28 top 50 doubles players ATP/WTA (including 6 world number 1’s)
  • Multiple grand slam champions (including British players Jamie Murray and Jonny Marray)
  • Olympic Coach for the Men’s doubles Gold medal team in Sydney 2000 (Lareau/Nestor) and Olympic coach for the Beijing, London and Rio Olympic games
  • 13 singles players inside the top 100 ATP/WTA, as well as being LTA performance advisor for numerous junior players, senior players and high performance coaches
  • Canadian Davis Cup Coach & Captain 1989-2000
  • Great Britain Davis Cup Coach since 2007 and Federation Cup Coach for 6 years

Louis is also internationally recognised as a world leading coach educator and presenter, having been an international author, global speaker in over 25 countries, Tennis Canada Coaching Certification Director from 1987-2001 and more recently tutor and content advisor for the Master and Senior Performance Coach courses in Great Britain.  Louis was awarded the ITF service to the game in 2011 in recognition of his outstanding contribution to tennis.

Louis will bring this wealth of knowledge and expertise to the Loughborough University National Tennis Academy as the Performance Advisor.  He will bring his passion for tennis and developing others to work closely with the coaches, support staff and players to assist Loughborough University National Tennis Academy in achieving its vision; in delivering a world renown player development programme which prioritises the person, performer and player to be the best they can be and succeed on the international stage.

Jocelyn Rae

Academy Performance Coach

Joss turned pro at the age of 17 and played professional tennis for 10 years during which time she reached a career high ranking of 67 on the WTA doubles tour, as well as competing in all 4 Grand Slams.  She reached the quarter-finals of the Wimbledon mixed doubles event in 2017 and is a Commonwealth Games Gold medallist.

After retiring in 2017, Joss embarked on a performance coaching career, teaming up with the LTA and working with the under 12, under 14 and under 16 National teams and players, helping them to achieve success on the international stage.

Joss was a playing member of the Great Britain Fed Cup team from 2011-2017, playing alongside Johanna Konta, Heather Watson, Katie Boulter and Anne Keothavong to name a few, and since retiring has moved into the Fed Cup coaching team.

Joss is also part of the BT Sport commentary team, staying abreast of the latest developments and what it takes to win at the highest echelon of the sport.

In June of this year, Joss will have completed the Senior Performance Coach Level 4 qualification.

Having been a player, Joss has experienced many of the challenges and opportunities our players will/have faced, this is invaluable to the Loughborough University National Tennis Academy and Joss brings a huge amount of enthusiasm, care and commitment in all that she does.

Al Stewart

Head of Performance Support/Strength & Conditioning Lead

Al is a Masters qualified professionally accredited strength and conditioning coach with over 18 years’ experience.  He has led teams and helped to produce sportsmen and women competing at world level across a number of sports.  This experience will be invaluable in developing the physical performance programme for the National Tennis Academy at Loughborough. 

Al has worked at Loughborough since 2017, most recently leading the Loughborough Sport strength and conditioning department prior to taking the role of Head of Performance Support & Strength and Conditioning Lead at the National Tennis Academy.  

Prior to working at Loughborough Al worked in professional football for 12 years.  In this time Al worked at Manchester City’s academy for 7 years; where alongside winning the FA Youth Cup, over 20 players went on to represent their country at full International level.  Al also worked as Head of Strength and Conditioning at Hull City in the Championship, gaining promotion to the Premier League in his first season and reaching the FA Cup Final in his second season.  More recently, Al worked as a physical performance coach with both the men’s and women’s age group squads for the FA, culminating in winning the World Cup with England U20’s in Korea in 2017. 

In Al’s first year at Loughborough he supported the University swim team with their strength and conditioning, supporting a number of swimmers to national medals with one of the swimmers breaking the British record.  More recently at Loughborough, Al has provided strength and conditioning support to a professional heavyweight boxer who has progressed to the top 5 in the world across a number of ranking organisations with 3 unbeaten performances in the last year. 

Alex Bailey

Performance Lifestyle and Education Manager

Prior to taking the role at the Loughborough University National Tennis Academy,  Alex worked as a Performance Lifestyle Advisor for the English Institute of Sport for nearly 5 years working across 3 different Olympic and Paralympic programmes in both the Rio and Tokyo cycles. Working as part of the multi-disciplinary team in British Swimming, British Weightlifting & GB Wheelchair Rugby; his role focused on supporting athletes on the World Class Programme with a person-first approach to enable an ability to manage the commitments of an elite lifestyle whilst effectively planning for post-sport careers and performing at the highest level.  Most notably, this included being part of the sport science and medicine team that helped contribute to British Swimming’s most successful Olympic performance since 1908; achieving 6 medals at Rio 2016.

A qualified executive coach, Alex previously worked in higher education where he spent time at 2 different universities managing the sport scholarship and TASS programmes and delivering performance lifestyle support for student athletes. These roles involved supporting athletes in the pursuit of academic and sporting success and successfully implementing a recruitment strategy to improve each university’s BUCS performance and sporting profile.

Alex has both an undergraduate and master’s degree in Sports Development whilst also being a qualified hockey coach and recently graduating from GB Hockey’s Advanced Coach Programme. Alongside his work in performance lifestyle, Alex is Assistant Coach to Loughborough Men’s Hockey Programme; one of the leading performance hockey programmes in the U.K, and has previously helped to support and mentor developing coaches within the GB/England Hockey pathway.

Oliver Freeman


Oliver began working in professional sport in 2008, holding positions with Championship football club academies, including leading the first team sports medicine department at one of these.  After completing an MSc in Sport Injury he worked for the English Institute of Sport (EIS) supporting Olympic and Paralympic athletes.

During the Rio cycle, Oliver supported British Weightlifting, working with the funded weightlifters and powerlifters who went on to achieve silver and bronze medals at the Paralympic games.  In preparation for Tokyo 2020, he transitioned to British Triathlon to support the Olympic physiotherapy programme and led the Paratriathlon physiotherapy service.

In 2018 Oliver was selected as a Physiotherapist for Team England at the Commonwealth Games.  He supported the team at the Gold Coast as they secured an overall second place finish with 45 gold, 45 silver and 46 bronze medals.  Oliver will combine his role as Physiotherapist at the Loughborough University National Tennis Academy whilst continuing to support the Olympic triathletes from Loughborough.

Andrew Shepherd

Sport Nutritionist

Andrew is a Sport and Exercise Nutrition registered (SENr) performance nutritionist with 10 years' experience in providing performance nutrition support to athletes.  He has previously held performance nutrition roles at Sheffield Hallam University and has further experience as a Sport and Exercise Nutritionist for Swim England, in a number of different disciplines including swimming, synchronised swimming and British Diving.

Prior to beginning his performance nutrition career, Andrew had a successful athletic career of his own which included national medals and international representation.  Over the last decade, he has supported athletes who have represented their country at Junior, European, World, Olympic, Paralympic and Commonwealth Games across a variety of sports.

In addition to holding a BSc and M.Dip from Sheffield Hallam University, Andrew also holds a Level One Anthropometrist (ISAK Level 1), Level 2 certificate in Food Safety and the UKAD Accredited Anti Doping Advisor Certificate.

Chris Harwood

Sport Psychologist

Chris is a Professor of Sport Psychology at Loughborough University and a HCPC Registered Sport Psychologist with over 25 years of practitioner experience.  A former professional tennis coach and Leicestershire county player, Chris has consulted with a variety of sports, organisations and athletes, however, his passion and expertise are very much tied to the sport that he plays and supporting the development of emerging talent.

Chris has had a unique career working as a leading practitioner, educator and academic scholar.  He gained his BSc, MSc and PhD at Loughborough within sport science and psychology, subsequently specialising in optimal environments around young athletes and their development of necessary psychological skills.  Seconded from the University for a first time, he held the position of Team Psychologist for Nottingham Forest FC from 2002-2004, and coordinated psychological support for their Youth Academy for a further eight years.  His experience and expertise are squarely aligned to the mission, calues and aims of our National Tennis Academy programme.

Chris has integrated psychological support into the programmes of many elite junior and senior tennis players.  He has also been a key contributor and driver of sport psychology within coach and parent education in British tennis, championing the importance of the support team around the adolescent player.  Seconded for a second time between 2010-2013, Chris served as Lead Psychologist for the Lawn Tennis Association working at the NTC with an emphasis on the performance, wellbeing and life skills of players transitioning into the professional game.  These values will reflect important components of Chris' work as part of the ongoing psychological development of our players.

Lewis Chapman

Performance Analyst

Tennis has always been a passion for Lewis, throughout his education and sporting life. He was a member of the youth team in one of France’s top 15 clubs and was captain of St Marys University BUCS team.

Dissertations for both his BSc in Sports Science (St Marys University) and MSc in Sports Biomechanics (Loughborough University) were focused on tennis.  His BSc research was on tennis tactics in elite level tie-breaks, alongside his job as performance analyst for the tennis teams. His MSc project focused around the biomechanics of the serve for elite level wheelchair tennis players. Throughout his education he has mastered gathering data and presenting it to players and coaches in an efficient manner to help enhance performance.  In addition to his role at the Centre, Lewis is working with the LTA and Loughborough University towards a PhD centred on biomechanics in tennis.

Andjelka Grubisic

National Tennis Academy Administrator

Andjelka joined the Tennis Centre at Loughborough University in July 2018 as an Administrator, providing support to the team with all aspects of university tennis provision, in particular the Mini Tennis Programme.

Andjelka has over 20 years of administrative experience with Midlands Electricity plc and Next plc, primarily within Learning and Development.  While at Midlands Electricity she was also responsible for Graduate Recruitment and Training, and during her time at Next plc she supported the Retail Apprenticeship Programme for three years.

Andjelka’s involvement in tennis started with her sons playing as juniors, and led to her taking up the sport herself and joining her local club where she is also the fixture secretary.

The following roles are being recruited and we will update the website accordingly.

  • Academy Coach