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Strong showing for Grantham wheelchair tennis starlet in Turkey tournament

A Grantham wheelchair tennis star gained invaluable tournament experience last week.

Girls’ wheelchair tennis world number eight Abbie Breakwell put in a strong showing on the clay at the Antalya Open, Turkey. The women’s event saw Abbie reach the second round but fall to the sixth seed, and world number 36, Busra Un.

In the consolation draw, she comfortably defeated the second seed, and world number 63, Samira Benichi 6-4, 6-2 in her first match. She then followed this with a resounding 6-0, 6-0 victory over Swiss player Annabelle Ribeaud. In the final, she faced Najwa Awane, the first seed and world number 59, and won 6-4, 7-5.

Abbie Breakwell competed at the Antalya Open, Turkey (43284251)
Abbie Breakwell competed at the Antalya Open, Turkey (43284251)

Abbie made the semi-finals of the junior event, losing to the tournament winner, and fellow LTA Junior Futures Programme member, Ben Bartram. Abbie has now moved up the women’s world rankings to 92 and is the number six ranked GB women’s layer.

Abbie said: “I had mixed feelings heading to Turkey as I was so pleased to be competing again after nine months off the tour due to Covid-19. But, after the sad news of Richard Edgley passing away, it was bittersweet.

“It was a roller coaster of a week, of ups and downs, but overwhelmingly a positive week with some really great results against players nearly 40 ranking places above me. It was a great opportunity to test the improvements I’ve made to my game during the imposed training block.

“To get the successes in my first return to competitive tennis was a fantastic feeling, and I know Richard would be proud and offering me a high-five. This one was for Richard!”

Following Abbie’s path is girls’ world number 34, and Grantham Tennis Club & Gym member, Martha Harris.

Martha is a member of the LTA Junior Futures Potential 2 programme that comes after the success of the first. It “aims to play a key role in the development of talented, young wheelchair tennis players in the UK, helping them progress towards future international success.”

GTC’s wheelchair tennis session takes place on a Saturday between 1pm and 2.30pm. It’s open to non-members and anyone with a physical disability.

The club is hopeful that all lessons, both indoor and outdoor, will restart on December 2, when lockdown restrictions are lifted.

If you are interested in playing tennis, Grantham Tennis Club & Gym is located on Gonerby Road in Grantham. For more information email info@granthamtennisclub.co.uk or call 01476 591391.

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