Tennis: Qualifying setback serves to rally junior ace’s Wimbledon prospects

Arun Bahia

Arun Bahia

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LEEDS tennis prospect Arun Bahia admits watching this year’s Wimbledon is made all the more difficult after he fell just short of strutting his stuff at the world famous venue.

Bahia competed in the HSBC Road to Wimbledon Northern Regional Qualifier at the Ilkley Tennis Club.

The 13-year-old – who trains at the David Lloyd Centre Leeds and Batley Tennis Club – was playing for a spot at August’s HSBC Road to Wimbledon 14 & Under Challenge at the All England Club.

“I played really well but he was just a better player on the day,” said the Leeds Grammar School student. “I played good tennis so I am happy with that.

“I feel that I am improving whenever I go on court and I enjoy playing in events like this with some of the best players around. I’d love to be a professional one day, and having the chance to play to go to Wimbledon now is incredible.”

Bahia was not the only Leeds starlet in action, as 13-year-old Adam Hillerby also took to the court, but exited in the first round to eventual winner Tom Dillon.

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 forms part of HSBC’s investment in the stars of the future.

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