A TENNIS prodigy from Rugby tipped for success by Tim Henman admits watching this year’s Wimbledon will be all the more difficult after he fell just short of strutting his stuff at the world famous venue.
As the likes of Andy Murray, Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams show what they can do at this year’s tournament – which started on Monday (June 29) – Ben Stuchbury of Rugby Lawn Tennis Club had the chance to follow suit as he competed in the HSBC Road to Wimbledon Midlands Regional Qualifier at Billesley Tennis Centre in Birmingham.
The 13-year-old was playing for a spot at August’s HSBC Road to Wimbledon 14 & Under Challenge at the All England Club, but lost in the second round to eventual qualifier Bradley Buckland, going down 4-2 4-2.
But, despite falling short of a memorable outing at the famous SW19 courts this time around, Ben is adamant we haven’t seen the last of him.
He said: “I played quite well but it wasn’t good enough.
“I need to work on keeping a level head, especially in the big points, and cut out the unforced errors.
“My first serve wasn’t up to par so that’s a big area to improve but I’m happy to have got this far and hopefully I can continue to improve.”
Although Ben failed to advance to Wimbledon, former British No.1 Tim Henman believes he is still very much one to watch out for in the future.
“Players are always disappointed when they miss out on qualifying for the HSBC Road to Wimbledon National Final and a chance to play on the grass courts at Wimbledon,” said Henman.
“Hopefully Ben will be spurred on to greater achievements in his junior career, and who knows, maybe even to play at The Championships as a professional player in the future.”
The HSBC Road to Wimbledon 14 & under Challenge began in 2002 and is the largest junior tournament in the UK, involving some 850 clubs, parks and schools with youngsters bidding to reach the national final at the All England Club.
It is the UK’s largest national junior grass court tournament, and forms part of HSBC’s investment in the stars of the future.