Partridge rises up the rankings

Amy Partridge with trophy at Frinton

Amy Partridge with trophy at Frinton - Credit: Archant

Norfolk's Amy Partridge reached the final of an AEGON British Tour grass court event in Ilkley last week where she lost to Natasha Hillyer of Warwickshire 7-6, 6-4.

Partridge, seeded third, put the physical strains of County Cup the week previously behind her to string three wins together and reach her third career British Tour final.

Her seeding gave her a bye through the opening round before dismissing Kent youngster Alice Gillan in straight sets in the last 16.

Cheshire's Kim Schmider provided a sterner test in the quarter finals and the eighth seed in fact took the first set from Partridge and at 5-all in the second set, the Norfolk girl had no room for error.

Partridge achieved a break of serve and the balance of play shifted from that point as she won 2-6, 7-5, 6-1 to set up a semi-final clash with Northumberland's Amy Hoburn.

Her semi-final opponent had ousted second seed and recent British Tour winner Aimee Gibson but Partridge was in determined mood and after a first set where one break of serve was the difference, she stormed away with the second set to win 6-4, 6-0.

The final was a match too far however and top seed Hillyer, who did not drop a set throughout the entire event, edged the first set on a tie-break and with that Partridge's title hopes faded.

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A pleasing week for the 19-year-old sees her improve her British ranking to number 73 with several tournaments left to play this summer before returning to Oxford University.