Pippa flying as Brits show their promise

Top Norfolk junior Pippa Horn was part of the British 16 and under team that finished 14th last week at the Junior Fed Cup finals at San Luis Potosi, Mexico.

After coming through their European qualifying section in the summer, Great Britain were grouped with top seeds Australia, home nation Mexico and Argentina at the finals.

A set of tough results in the group phase left the team in the 13th-16th place play-offs where they beat Thailand and lost to Romania to finish 14th overall.

Horn featured heavily for Great Britain including a commendable performance against Junior Wimbledon Champion Ashleigh Barty; Australia's top singles player and the number 3 ranked junior in the world.

Horn and Cambridgeshire's Beth Askew, who also lost her singles, paired up for doubles and were beaten by Brooke Rischbieth and Belinda Woolcock to hand Australia the 3-0 win. The team lost 2-1 to Mexico; Horn was unlucky with a 6-3 third set loss in her singles.


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Team rotation saw Horn rested for the final group clash as Askew and Katy Dunne took on Argentina, losing 2-1 with a singles win for Askew.

Horn was involved in the doubles rubber against Thailand as Great Britain picked up their first victory of the finals; the Norfolk youngster then came through a tight singles against Romania 6-4 7-5 to end the competition on a personal high note.

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It was the first time Great Britain had reached the Junior Fed Cup finals for 3 years and finishing as the 14th best side in the world is a credible achievement.

Meanwhile the 16 and under boys' squad of Evan Hoyt, Luke Bambridge and Kyle Edmund won the Junior Davis Cup in impressive style with a 2-0 victory over 2nd seeds Italy in the final. Greg Rusedski's side become the first British team to win the Junior Davis Cup following on from their success in the European Summer Cup in August.

• There is the chance to watch some high quality tennis in Norwich this week as the Aegon British Tour comes to Easton College Tennis Centre.

Among the entrants are Norfolk Senior County players Richard Bloomfield, Nicky Crawley, Olivia Nicholls and Amy Partridge.

Bloomfield, likely to be top seed in the event, is fresh off the back of two encouraging Futures tournaments where he picked up one title and reached another final.

Crawley was a vital part of Norfolk's county side that reached Group 1 in the summer for the first time since 1977 and will be looking to make his mark in his first British Tour event in some years.

Nicholls and Partridge are established members of the Norfolk Ladies' side despite being 16 and 17 years old respectively. Both are likely to be unseeded, but will fancy their chances of a decent run through the main draw.

Norfolk juniors attempting to qwualify for the tournament include Stephen Harlow, Harry Weeds, Megan Wright and Maddie Brooks; all of whom will gain valuable experience by competing at British Tour level.

Qualifying starts today while the first main draw round takes place on Wednesday.

Play starts at 9am each day and entry for spectators is free.

• The Hunstanton Vets LTC team of Tricia Peal, Leanne Skinner, David Henderson and Philip Tye have qualified for the final of the Vets Tennis GB Beachcomber National Inter-Club Championships in the Senior Mixed section. They played the semi-final against last year's winners and number one seeds Leicestershire at Easton on Saturday 24th September, recording a 4-0 win having beaten Woodford Wells 3-1 and Hallamshire 3-1 in earlier rounds.

They will now play either Winchester or Purley in the final on 20 November. The venue for the finals is the David Lloyd Centre in Dudley.

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