Busby brothers Douglas (18) and Lachie (14) Macintosh have tennis stardom in their sights after winning top tennis scholarships.
Douglas left Merchiston Castle School in June and has been accepted on a scholarship to Davidson College in North Carolina to play tennis and study economics and mathematics, while Lachie is following in his brother’s footsteps after being awarded a place in Merchiston’s Tennis Academy for the next 4 years.
Both players wear contact lenses and have been sponsored by one of the country’s leading optician brands Black & Lizars for three years.
Douglas’ scholarship caps what has been a highly successful year for the Merchiston team captain after the team took second place at the International Schools Sport Federation Tennis World School championships in Recife, Brazil this March. He also holds two junior ITF doubles titles - won in Cyprus and Malta.
Commenting on his move to America, Douglas said: “The American college system has a fantastic set up to help me develop and improve my game, and ultimately make it on to the professional circuit, so I’m very excited to be going!
“I chose Davidson because it was good tennis school but was also regarded highly academically. To have four years playing as much tennis as I want and getting a degree is a fantastic opportunity. I am looking forward to playing as part of the college team and learning as much as I can.”
Younger sibling Lachie is making his name in junior tennis too - he was awarded the Tennis Scotland Miquel Award for outstanding achievement in 2016. He isn’t fazed by following in his brother’s footsteps. He said: “I can’t wait to get started at Merchiston Castle. I would love to do as well as Douglas there, go to an American college and one day make it professionally, but that’s a while away for me.
“It’s the dream to become the next Murrays or Williams’ and win Wimbledon. My love for tennis comes from playing with my brother and sister. My mum is also a coach, so it’s really helpful to have people who understand the highs and lows that come with playing competitive tennis. We are all very competitive but we practice together.”
The brothers’ professionalism towards the game is not limited to their performances on the court. Douglas said: “We look after ourselves on and off the court by training well and eating well. Looking after our vision is equally as important. When playing tennis, you need to be completely focussed with quick reactions and good hand-eye coordination.
“Black & Lizars have been great at ensuring I always have the correct prescription, that I can look after my lenses when travelling all over the world to play and keeping my eyes hydrated on the court.”
Abi Colraine, Assistant Manager at Black & Lizars Giffnock, said: “We’ve supported Douglas and Lachie for three years and we’re very proud to see them both take the next step in their tennis career.
“Good vision is essential to succeed in sport, so we’re very happy to have helped the boys to play in comfort with well-fitted and suitable contact lenses.
“We wish the Macintosh brother’s great success in what looks set to be an exciting to start to successful careers.”