Rising star Ben earns LTA support

Ben Bartram, who has been able to return to the courts at Stanmore tennis club in Thorpe Picture: St

Ben Bartram, who has been able to return to the courts at Stanmore tennis club in Thorpe Picture: Stephen Jessop - Credit: Archant

A promising young tennis player from Sprowston has been selected for the LTA’s top support programme for junior wheelchair players.

Ben Bartram Picture: Stephen Jessop

Ben Bartram Picture: Stephen Jessop - Credit: Archant

Ben Bartram, 14, is one of 12 high potential players chosen for the LTA Wheelchair National Age Group Programme (NAGP), which provides a variety of coaching, competition and educational support.

The programme is designed to educate and develop players as they transition through the LTA’s World Class Wheelchair Tennis Performance Pathway, preparing them to become elite international athletes.

“I’m really happy to be selected to be part of the NAGP,” said Bartman, a pupil at All Saints School in Lessingham. “There is a lot to look forward to and the continued support from the LTA will help me in my journey to progress along the pathway.

“I’ve been finding the webinars that the LTA have organised for us during the lockdown very useful and they have really helped to keep me motivated alongside keeping up training at home. I’ve also been doing two sessions a week with my personal trainer via video call. Nothing beats being on the court but, for now, like everyone, I’ve been finding solutions to work around it.”

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As part of the NAGP, Bartram will have access to training and tournament guidance from LTA coaches, training camps, home training visits from LTA coaches and support to maintain a sport/life balance.

Bartram is a former National School Games gold medallist. He made his international debut two years ago when he was selected to represent Great Britain in the junior event at the World Team Cup and last year he was part of the GB team that won the silver medal in the same event after narrowly missing out against Australia in the deciding doubles rubber. Last week marked the one-year anniversary of that silver medal-winning performance, while the previous week Bartram was due to be in Portugal as part of the GB World Team Cup junior team once again.

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Players who continue to show high potential at the end of their NAGP support will advance to the next stage of the pathway, the World Class Wheelchair Tennis Performance Programme, which currently supports Norfolk’s Alfie Hewett,

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