REDDITCH junior Felix Gill says his first experience of playing in Junior Wimbledon will inspire him to bigger and better things.
The 17-year-old was awarded a wild card to the main draw of the junior tournament at SW19 and relished the experience of competing against some of the best players in the world on the sport’s biggest stage in both singles and doubles.
Despite bowing out in the first round of both events, Gill says he loved the experience.
“It was amazing to have the opportunity to play in my first Junior Wimbledon,” he said. “I played well and was competitive in both my singles and doubles.
“This experience will help me in future grand slams. I will continue to work hard to make improvements and to earn a place at next year’s Junior Wimbledon.”
Gill, ranked 137 in the 18 and under world rankings, faced world no.22 Nicolas Alvarez Verona in the first round of the boys’ singles. He wasn’t phased by the big stage, fighting hard and using his forehand as a weapon to command a lot of points against the Spaniard.
Alvarez Verona, who made it to the Australian Open quarter-finals this year, edged ahead after getting a break in each set to win 6-4, 6-4.
Gill paired up with fellow Brit Jack Pinnington Jones in the doubles and faced seconds seeds Shintaro Mochizuki (Japan) and Holger Vitus Nobskov Rune (Denmark), who are ranked second and ninth in the world respectively.
Gill and Pinnington lost 6-4 in the first set and won the second 6-4 before losing the decider 6-3.
Gill has another year in the juniors and will get his chance to compete at Wimbledon next year with continued hard work and commitment to the sport.
Redditch TC head coach Tony Ravenscroft said: “Felix is an excellent role model for the younger juniors interested in tennis and continues to inspire players from Redditch and further afield.”