Barty inspiring future tennis champs

Ashleigh Barty of Australia celebrates victory during her ladies singles third round match against Andrea Petkovic of Germany during Day seven of the 2019 French Open. Picture: Clive Mason/Getty Images
Ashleigh Barty of Australia celebrates victory during her ladies singles third round match against Andrea Petkovic of Germany during Day seven of the 2019 French Open. Picture: Clive Mason/Getty Images

TENNIS coach Rick Willsmore says Australian tennis player Ash Barty’s recent Grand Slam title is inspiring girls to take up the sport.

The Scarborough Tennis Club coach believed Barty’s French Open win would continue to boost female numbers at the club.

Willsmore introduced girls squads in 2017 and said there were 154 girls enrolled in lessons at the club’s academy, which is half of the program participants.

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“The social side is really important and so while they are learning and training to become better at the sport of tennis, the friendships and camaraderie is what keeps them in the sport,” he said.

“Ash Barty’s success at The French Open is so good for Australian tennis and in particular girls in tennis.

Scarborough Tennis Academy players Isabella Jorge, Olivia Fleming, Ella Martino and (front) Katie Staple and Madalina Florea.

 

“She is a perfect role model and seeing her on the television, online and in the papers, helps families out there see tennis as a great sport for their young girls to get involved in.”

Seven of Scarborough’s 11 coaches are female and Willsmore said this was also important in increasing girls’ participation in tennis.

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