Alexandra so close to Wimbledon debut


Tring tennis starlet Alexandra Hildreth admits watching this year’s Wimbledon is made all the more difficult after she fell just short of strutting her stuff at the world famous venue.

As the likes of British No.1 Andy Murray, Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams show what they can do at this year’s Wimbledon, Alexandra had the chance to follow suit as she competed in the HSBC Road to Wimbledon East Regional Qualifier at Gosling Sports Park in Welwyn Garden City.

The 14-year-old was playing for a spot at August’s HSBC Road to Wimbledon 14 & Under Challenge at the All England Club but lost 6-2, 6-2 to top seed Lauren Armstrong in the second round.

But, despite falling short of a memorable outing at the famous SW19 courts this time around, Tring School pupil Alexandra is adamant we haven’t seen the last of her.

“I think she gave quite a strong performance, I could have played better, I could have played more to my strengths,” she said.

“My strengths are using more of the angles and the drop shots, mixing things around, but it was tough.

“There was always a chance I could beat her, I knew it was tough but there was a chance. That’s one of the toughest games I’ve played, she’s very good.

“I was very happy with how it went in the first round because it was a very close match, it could have gone either way.”

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.

And, although Alexandra failed to advance to Wimbledon, former British No.1 Tim Henman believes she 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 Alexandra will be spurred on to greater achievements in her junior career and who knows maybe even to play at The Championships as a professional player in the future.”

The HSBC Road to Wimbledon National 14 & 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.