An all-round sportsman, Jean-Louis looked set to become a tennis star before taking up golf. Born and brought up on the Pacific Island of New Caledonia, he was ranked in the top ten of both the Australian and French rankings as a teenager. Then he became smitten by the golf bug and decided to turn professional in 1991 at the age of 24, even though the best handicap he achieved as an amateur was six. The start of his professional career was delayed by French National Service but on resuming he finished Number Two on the 1993 Challenge Tour and graduated to The European Tour. He retained his playing rights in his first season in 109th place on the Volvo Order of Merit and in 1995 he made impressive progress by finishing 50th in the Volvo Order of Merit with winnings of £117,535. But his 1996 season ended in June because of a back injury and he was granted a medical extension to take him into 1997. Finished 138th on the Volvo Order of Merit in 1998 and decided to take a two year break from the game. Returned refreshed in 2002 to earn the 32nd card at the Qualifying School after a frustrating year on the Challenge Tour.