Tennis: Young stars have a Spring in their step for LTA event

Taking part in the Doncaster Spring Junior Open Tennis Tournament are brother and sister Ed (15) and Elizabeth Morris (12) from Rossington with Doncaster Tennis club head coach Mick Hague. Picture: Malcolm Billingham
Taking part in the Doncaster Spring Junior Open Tennis Tournament are brother and sister Ed (15) and Elizabeth Morris (12) from Rossington with Doncaster Tennis club head coach Mick Hague. Picture: Malcolm Billingham
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Anyone who drops in on Doncaster Lawn Tennis Club’s annual Spring Open this week could be lucky enough to see a future Grand Slam champion.

World number two Andy Murray, and brother Jamie, both played in what is Yorkshire’s biggest junior tournament as youngsters.

Their mum Judy, the Great Britain Federation Cup captain, recently commented on Facebook how she and her two sons always enjoyed the Doncaster tournament and praised the warm welcome they received from current lady president June Rainey.

Over 300 of the country’s best juniors will contest the week-long LTA Grade 3 event, which starts today at the club’s Saxton Avenue base.

“We are pleased with the number of entries, which is only slightly down on last year’s figure when the event was upped to LTA Grade 2 status,” said organiser Wayne Morris.

“Coaches from all over the country are bringing groups of players to the event. We have parties from the North East, Staffordshire and Cheshire.

“We also have players travelling from the Channel Islands, Wales and Scotland.

“Sahej Maker, currently living in New York, will even fly over from America to play.”

Local wins in singles events have been few and far between in recent years, but Elizabeth Morris is tipped to do well.

The Hall Cross schoolgirl is currently ranked number one in Yorkshire in the under-12s age group. She plays for the club’s senior South Yorkshire and Sheffield League teams and is a member of their Yorkshire League squad.

“She’s got a good attitude and she works hard in training,” said joint club coach Mick Hague.

“She’s a good all-round athlete which is important in the modern game.”

Elizabeth said: “This is my fourth year at the event and I always really enjoy the great atmosphere and catching up with friends from all over the country.

“It’s great to have such a big tournament in your home town.

“The quality of players is always very high and this makes for some great matches. It’s a real challenge for the local players like me and my brother Ed.

“We both played a similar tournament in Jersey last summer and it’s now good to see some of the Channel Island players coming to Doncaster.”

Ed Morris will compete in the under-16s singles and the under-18s doubles with clubmate Luis Sylvester, who will also contest the singles.

Yorkshire under-12 Matthew Clegg and exciting under-9s prospect Frazer Fennel are also tipped to do well.