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Young Bromley tennis player meets Henman at Wimbledon
3:14pm Wednesday 21st August 2013 in Sport
By Ryan Walters
BROMLEY’S Nell Miller experienced an opportunity of a lifetime last week as she took to the lawns of Wimbledon alongside former British number one tennis player Tim Henman as part of the HSBC Road to Wimbledon national 14 and under challenge finals.
The 13-year-old Bullers Wood School pupil qualified for Wimbledon after winning the Kent county finals and won all three of her matches in Group D to qualify for the girls’ main draw.
And the number four seed she made it all the way to the semi-finals before losing in straight sets to the number two seed and eventual winner Sophie Drakeford-Lewis.
Some 20,000 children from all over Britain competed throughout the summer in pursuit of following in the footsteps of Andy Murray by playing at Wimbledon, with the top 128 boys and girls earning the chance to compete at the National Finals.
And the Bromley Tennis Academy star revealed arriving as a player at the All England Lawn Tennis Club this year was certainly the highlight of her summer.
“It feels great to be playing where the professionals have played so it’s a great experience to be here,” Miller said.
“I really enjoyed it and I’ll definitely take all that I can from playing in such a great tournament, I learnt a lot about how I can play on grass and it was a special experience.
“I had hoped I could make it far in the tournament and I got all the way to the semi-finals but I came up against a really good player in Sophie and she played the better tennis.
“I am really happy with how my week went and this will definitely help me in future when I play in big tournaments.”
Miller even got the chance to meet former British number one and HSBC tournament ambassador Tim Henman as he spent time with the players, signed autographs, and posed for photos with the finalists.
“The excitement of coming through the gates is still the same for me. It has the best tennis tournament in the world and it is a huge motivating factor for all the kids,” Henman said.
“You see them out here on the grass where the greats of the game played and it is inspiring and that is where Wimbledon plays a huge part in generating the sport’s interest.”
The HSBC Road to Wimbledon national 14 and under challenge is the UK’s largest national junior grass court tournament and forms part of HSBC’s investment in the stars of the future.
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