Lam to represent Oceania in Wimbledon



A former tennis prodigy from the CNMI will play in the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club two months from now after La Hunn Lam has been invited as a wildcard entry representing Oceania in the 2022 Wimbledon.

The 12-year-old learned how to play tennis in the CNMI under the tutelage of CNMI national coach and Northern Mariana Islands Tennis Association president Jeff Race before moving to Europe prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

He now resides in Mallorca, Spain and one of his coaches is Tony Nadal, uncle of 21-time Grand Slam winner Rafael Nadal.

“My initial reaction was too amazed, my jaw dropped. I’m trying my best to train harder with great motivation. I am excited, honored, and elated that I can’t express it in words,” Lam said in a message to Saipan Tribune.

Race, for his part, said getting invited to one of the four majors in tennis is a great opportunity for Lam.

“I think it’s great that Wimbledon is adding a 14’s competition. It’s an incredible opportunity for a young athlete like La Hunn. I know that he’s a young guy that absolutely loves the sport and I believe that this can be something that motivates him like nothing else could,” the NMSA Hall of Famer said.

Race actually will be accompanying Lam to Wimbledon in July as he’s been selected by the Oceania Tennis Federation to serve as his former ward’s coach in the world-class competition. 

“For me personally? Wow! It’s a dream. I walked onto center court after visiting the Wimbledon office about 40 years ago. Now I have the honor to be going there as a coach. I don’t know what kind of system that they may adopt for entry into this event in the future, but I hope that the ITF (International Tennis Federation) continues to give wildcards to regional associations like our OTF so that more kids like La Hunn get an opportunity like this,” he said.

Race said he expects to join Lam in England by late June or early July.

Mark Rabago | Associate Editor
Mark Rabago is the Associate Editor of Saipan Tribune. Contact him at

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