RISING Redditch tennis star Felix Gill believes there is plenty more to come after reaching the semi-finals of the Australian Open boys’ doubles.
The 17-year-old was competing at Melbourne Park for the first time having worked his way up the world rankings in the last 12 months, now ranked 30 in the junior world rankings.
Gill was beaten in his opening boys’ singles match against Russian player Egor Agafonov who triumphed 6-2, 7-6 despite a much-improved showing in the second set by the young Briton.
However, Gill then paired up with fellow Briton Arthur Fery for the boys’ doubles event and there was no messing around from the duo in the first two rounds as they beat Corban Crowther and Patorn Hanchaikul 6-1, 6-4 and then went on to defeat Peter Fajta and Sebastian Gima 6-2, 6-3 to gain their spot in the quarter-finals.
In the last eight the British duo faced Japanese and Chinese number three seeds Shunsuke Mitsui and Bu Yunchaokete, but Gill and Fery were unfazed as they executed good tactics and court positioning to secure a 6-2, 7-6 victory and book their place in the semi-final.
They next faced Mikolaj Lorens of Poland and Karlis Osolins of Latvia in the last four and, after a delay due to the heat rule, the Brits lost the first set 6-4 with one break of serve.
They fought back to win the second set 7-6 and continued to fight in the match tie-break but lost out 10-7, just missing out on the final.
Gill said: “It was an amazing experience to compete in my first Australian Open. We played really well in the doubles and got so close to the final.
“I have learnt a lot from my experiences down under in both singles and doubles and I will build on this ready for the French Open at the end of May.”
Gill started his tennis journey at Redditch Tennis Club and is still a member of the club. If you are interested in playing tennis, whatever your age or ability, contact head coach Tony Ravenscroft on 07969 649092 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a free session.