Teenagers given beginners’ guide to avoid­ing dis­trac­tion at Wim­ble­don

The Herald - Herald Sport - - WIMBLEDON -

It was no or­di­nary group of Scot­tish teenage girls which gath­ered around Court No.2 on Wed­nes­day evening. The topic of con­ver­sa­tion wasn’t One Di­rec­tion or boys, merely the se­ri­ous busi­ness of how to make your mark on Ju­nior Wim­ble­don. With Judy Mur­ray’s as­sis­tance, a Scot­tish quar­tet were watch­ing Tara Moore tak­ing on Vera Zvonareva and, while the Bri­tish player’s best ef­forts fi­nally came to noth­ing, it was a valu­able beginners’ guide on how to avoid all the hype and con­cen­trate on the ten­nis.

With no Scot­tish boys in the field this year, the task of fol­low­ing in the foot­steps of Andy Mur­ray falls to four feisty fe­males, in a com­pe­ti­tion – won by Laura Rob­son in 2008 – which starts to­day.

Is­abelle Wal­lace, a 17-year-old from In­ver­ness who faces Ju­lia Grab­her of Aus­tria, is the old­est of the bunch. Then there are two 16-year-old Glaswe­gians, both of whom have been dealt a tough hand in the draw. Maia Lums­den, a wild card who has been train­ing out in Am­s­ter­dam un­der the watch­ful eye of il­lus­tri­ous coach Sven Groen­eveld, faces No.2 seed Cather­ine Bel­lis of the USA, while Anna Bro­gan came through two tough rounds of qual­i­fy­ing at Roe­hamp­ton to take her place against the ex­ot­i­cally named No.3 seed Tor­nado Black.

Mak­ing her Wim­ble­don de­but is the youngest of the group, 15-year-old Anas­ta­sia Mikheeva of Ed­in­burgh, who has been win­ning matches at Un­der-18 level this year. She faces Latvia’s Je­lena Ostapenko.

“A lot de­pends on the draw but more de­pends on the mind set,” said Judy Mur­ray. “Some­times our kids can be like rab­bits in the head­lights at Wim­ble­don, they get dis­tracted by the whole hype of it. The girls were there watch­ing Tara Moore, but that wasn’t just about sup­port­ing an­other Bri­tish player, it is about giv­ing them a feel of what it is go­ing to be like. For the kids it is so easy to get dis­tracted.”

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