Latest News From Lucy
American Tour Update
As my American string of tournaments come to a close I would like to say a massive thank you to Somerset LTA for their support over the past few weeks, funding Zoe Leach to come out to both my final two competitions in Hilton Head and Montreal.
Somerset LTA have been huge supporters throughout my tennis career. In the very early days while I was just taking up wheelchair tennis after my accident, it was Taunton Tennis Club that were so welcoming, offering me a place to train and he coached at Blackbrook Tennis Centre. It was then here that I met my first Coach, Natalie Ayton and our partnership which lasted over 10 years saw us achieve many successes together including 2 Paralympic Bronze Medals. I will always be incredibly grateful to Nat for instilling in me a huge desire to push the boundaries of my disability and what I could achieve.
During my time at Taunton Tennis Centre I was also lucky enough to work with a number of other Somerset coaches including Zoe Leach, Debbie Hale, Alec Blake and Anna Howe. Zoe in particular took a pivotal role in my set up in the lead up to the Rio Paralympics and was instrumental in helping me achieve the success I had there. All Somerset coaches that I have worked with continue to be huge supporters of my tennis and take time to support me in competitions around the world.
I always look forward to going back to Hilton Head each year, and this year was an important process of resetting and rebuilding some confidence on court. I played some tough matches here, in the semi final against Natalie Mayara I had to find a way back from a set and 2-4 down to win the match and again in the final it was a tough fight against Japanese, World No.12 Tanaka. However, I was truly delighted to come through both these tests and win the title for a record 7th time.
Heading to Montreal, an indoor tournament with a different dynamic but a similar draw saw me face Mayara again in the semis. I was delighted to put in a much better performance and secure a win, being a set and 2-0 up when Mayara unfortunately had to retire due to an elbow injury. This is never the way you want a match to end and I hope that Natalia is able to make a good recovery.
In the final again against Tanaka it was disappointing this time that I wasn’t able to play my best tennis. On the day I struggled to execute my game and finished the match a bit frustrated. However hats off to my opponent she played a better match and was a thoroughly deserved winner. I first met Anaka around 4 years ago at the Japan Open and have watched her train incredibly hard to improve her game so quickly and I know going into any match with her that it is going to be a tough fight.
I’m now looking forward to a week of rest before heading back to train hard ahead of the final competitions of the year which include Bath Indoors, Doubles Masters in Holland and Singles Masters in Orlando.
Thank you once again for all your support.
3 Times Paralympian, Beijing 2008, London 2012, Rio 2016 and 2 times Paralympic bronze medal winner
Lucy is heading off to compete in Israel next week, and the team at Cranmers are delighted to have provided the financial support for Lucy to be able to take her hitting partner, Debbie Hale, formally of Taunton Tennis Club. We wish Lucy every success at the tournament and look forward to hearing about how it goes.
If you are interested in hearing more about the sports performance eye-wear that Cranmers stock please feel free to get in touch or pop in and speak with one of our friendly team of specialists.
Cranmers Optometrists have proudly sponsored Lucy since 2008. With a career which has already seen Lucy compete at 3 Paralympic Games winning two Bronze medals, it has been an honour to provide Lucy with specialist sports performance eye-wear and financial support during this time.
In return all the team at Cranmers Optometrists have been rewarded with a friendship from Lucy that has shown us all courage in the face of adversity and the dedication required to turn your dreams into reality.
Sat courtside at the London 2012 Olympics watching Lucy achieve her first Paralympic medal goes down as one of the most humbling experiences of my life.
– Kate, Cranmer’s Director