Grantham wheelchair tennis starlet dreams of Paralympic games after joining elite programme
A promising young member of Grantham Tennis Club has been selected for the LTA’s top support programme for junior wheelchair players.
Abbie Breakwell, 17, is one of 12 high potential players chosen for the LTA Wheelchair National Age Group Programme (NAGP), which provides a variety of coaching, competition and educational support.
The programme is designed to educate and develop players as they transition through the LTA’s World ClassWheelchair Tennis Performance Pathway, allowing them to be best prepared to become elite international athletes.
Abbie is Britain’s top-ranked junior female wheelchair tennis player and a multiple National School Games gold medallist in singles and doubles and a multiple National Champion.
She made her international debut in 2018 after being selected for Great Britain’s junior team for the World Team Cup and she would have been in Portugal last week for the 2020 World Team Cup if the event had not been cancelled.
Abbie had already made a fine start to 2020 after winning the girls’ singles and doubles titles at the Bolton Junior Wheelchair Tennis Open in February, subsequently attaining a career best junior singles world ranking of No.8.
She said: “After being part of the LTA’s talent pathway for two years, I have learnt so much, and improved immensely. I am incredibly proud and happy to be selected for the NAGP. It is an exciting time and the next step in a long journey ahead of me in my career.
“I am hoping that being part of the NAGP and receiving the support of the LTA coaches will enable me to continue to improve, gain vital experience and a higher world ranking on my journey to becoming a full-time professional wheelchair tennis player.
“I’m hoping to one day realise my dreams of representing Great Britain at the Paralympics.”
Rob Cross, LTA Wheelchair Performance Head Coach, said: “I would like to congratulate Abbie on her selection for the NAGP this year. She has shown great potential and now has access to a fantastic package of support which will hopefully allow her to develop even further both as a player and a person.
"While we have a track record of producing high performing wheelchair tennis players in this country, the standards of the sport across the world continue to advance and this programme is designed to help us stay ahead of the pack and maximise the potential of our best players.
"The LTA World Class Wheelchair Tennis Performance Pathway provides a seamless route for our highest potential players to progress from junior competition to playing major tournaments. I wish Abbie and the other players selected for the NAGP every success as they continue their journey this year.”
For more information about the LTA Player Pathway and 10-year Performance Strategy, visit: www.lta.org.uk.