My Premier Live Internship, Pro-League & Necker Cup Experience
By Mike Redlicki
Hello. I’m Mike Redlicki. I’m currently in my last year of eligibility playing college tennis at the University of Arkansas. This past year playing for the Hogs has been the best year of my life and it turned out to be the best season for our program in the last 35 years. Upon finishing in the top 20, my coach was sent an email regarding a work opportunity in Atlanta for the summer. Knowing that I was looking for work-MBA program graduation requirement-my coach forwarded me the email, which put me in contact with Rem Reynolds. I was blessed with the opportunity to work for Rem and Premier Live, and it has been nothing short of an invaluable business experience.
The Premier Live Pro League
At Premier Live, the produces the world’s most exclusive Pro-Ams through their partnership with Sir Richard Branson known as the Necker Cup (tennis) and Necker Open (golf). Part of the Premier Live internship was having the opportunity to win my way to the Necker Cup via the Premier Live Pro League. Upon learning this, my excitement went through the roof. The Premier Live Pro League brought some of the best college and former ATP/WTA tour players to compete in a fun and exciting team format, played at the top clubs in Atlanta. At the end of the competition, the male and female with the most “Necker” points accumulated would win a trip to the 2016 Necker Cup as a pro.
Once I learned of all the players that were going to be playing in this year’s pro league, I remember thinking that this is going to be really difficult to pull off because the competition was so fierce. From a former world #449 to endless high-level division 1 players, there was not going to be a single easy match.
Earning My Way
As the league unraveled, we were able to start strong with a victory over Team Olde Towne Athletic. It was close, as we squeaked by with a team score of 3-2. I was fortunate enough to have a good showing and help my team by winning my individual match. The following week, we were on the other side of things as team Atlanta Athletic edged us by the same 3-2 score. Although I was still able to win my match, it would have been sweet to have the team get a victory again. The third and last week of the regular season of the league, we had a gut-wrenching loss to team Piedmont by a score of 3-2. I won my singles match, and my teammate was playing the deciding match when the team score was tied 2-2. Although he staged an epic comeback from being down 6-9, 0-40, he, unfortunately, couldn’t complete the comeback, losing 10-8, and we lost by a score of 3-2 to finish off the season.
All The Way To The Bitter End
After the conclusion of the regular season, I personally stand alone with a 3-0 record, which scored me 300 individual ‘Necker’ points. This qualifies me to take part in the playoff match where I will face the player with the second largest amount of accumulated Necker points. This match took place on one of the stadium courts at the BB&T Open courts. It was an incredible experience to get to play in Atlantic Station during the World Tour event. It was quite the dramatic match, with temperatures and humidity readings hitting triple digits. I scrapped out a 7-5;4-6;10-8 victory in order to earn my way onto Necker Island. The joy I felt being able to spend more time with the people I worked with for the entirety of the summer was uncontainable, let alone on Sir Richard Branson’s private island.
The Necker Experience
The trip to Necker was surreal. Getting to and from the island is a challenge if you’re new to caribbean travel, but it is well worth it. I knew it was going to be a special week regardless of what happened, but I knew that it was going to be a particularly special week when right upon my arrival to Necker’s Great House, I was invited by Sir Richard to sit with him during dinner. Never did I think I would have an opportunity to share a meal with one of, if not the, most influential entrepreneurs of all time. During the rest of the week, the relationships I created with various highly successful people were invaluable. Everybody that was on the island had something incredibly special about them. My favorite aspect about the other guests on the trip was that no matter how successful or well-known someone is (Robin Thicke, Tim Gannon, Mike Tyson, and others), they never brought that to attention or never behaved as if they were on a higher pedestal than other guests. You got to meet the real version of someone, and it was the biggest thrill to find out how incredibly genuine and kind-hearted all the guests are. When introducing myself to some professionals that were on the island, it was astonishing to see how proactive these incredibly accomplished individuals are to help others with their careers/futures. I tried my best to make the most of every moment because I knew that I was one of the very few people in the entire world that had the kind of opportunity I was able to have on the Island. None of this would have been possible if it weren’t for Rem’s internship program. For that, I sincerely thank and appreciate him. I’ll never forget what I got to experience, and I hope that one day I will be blessed enough to maybe do something like that again.
I appreciate you taking the time to follow my story from this summer as well as the trip to Necker Island, and until next time, keep spreading #PLUR.