BROMSGROVE tennis starlet Imogen Sinclair insists she is hungrier than ever to see her name in lights after falling just short of booking his spot at a prestigious Wimbledon tournament.
The 13-year-old has long been known as one to watch for the future and was at it again on Saturday as she was in action at the HSBC Road to Wimbledon Midlands Regional Qualifier at the Nottingham Tennis Centre.
Sinclair was playing for a spot at next month’s HSBC Road to Wimbledon 14 & Under Challenge at the All England Club but despite winning her first match couldn’t find a way past Anna Chesca in the final, losing 6-0 6-0.
But despite falling short of the famous SW19 this time, RGS Worcester pupil Sinclair is adamant we haven’t seen the last of her.
“I had a long match in the first round and that took it out of me a bit, but I've had some back problems as well recently,” said Sinclair, a member of Bromsgrove Tennis Club.
“Knowing that the end goal is to play at Wimbledon is what inspires me to keep going.
“It would mean a lot to me to play there because it would be great to play on the courts that the professionals use.”
The HSBC Road to Wimbledon 14 & under Challenge began in 2002 and is an All England Club junior event initiative supported by the LTA – it has now even expanded into Asia with a pilot scheme run in India with events in Delhi and Mumbai.
It is the largest junior tournament in the UK, involving some 850 clubs, parks and schools with youngsters bidding to reach the national final at the All England Club.
And although Sinclair failed to advance former Davis Cup captain and tournament director Paul Hutchins believes she is still one to watch out for in the future.
“Players are always disappointed when they miss out on qualifying for the HSBC Road to Wimbledon and a chance to play on the grass at Wimbledon,” said Hutchins.
“Hopefully Imogen will be inspired to enter the event next year if age eligible or be spurred on to greater achievements in her junior career and who knows maybe play at Junior Wimbledon during the Championships or even as a pro player in the main draw.”