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15 - 23 June 2019

Nature Valley Classic

Edgbaston Priory Club

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Nature Valley Classic – 15 - 23 June 2019

Nature Valley Classic: England Netball's Ama Agbeze hits Edgbaston Priory Club

  • 2019 WTA Premier logo
  • 15/05/2019

  • Major Events

England Netball Captain Ama Agbeze hit the grass courts at Edgbaston Priory Club as the one-month countdown to the prestigious Nature Valley Classic got underway. 

The netball hero, who hails from Birmingham herself, joined local rising teenage tennis star Lillian Mould and girls from schools across the city for a tennis session with Midlands Coach of the Year Claire Norman. 

Agbeze will captain England in the Netball World Cup in Liverpool in July, just weeks after some of the world’s leading female tennis players compete at Birmingham for the 38th edition of the competition.

The tournament is set to feature the strongest line-up in its 38 year history with current world No.1 Naomi Osaka, world No.5 defending champion Petra Kvitova, and British No.1 and Fed Cup star Johanna Konta all confirmed to play.

They will be joined in Birmingham by two-time Grand Slam champion Garbiñe Muguruza, former US Open finalist and 2016 Nature Valley Classic champion Madison Keys, world No.6 Elina Svitovina and last year’s Wimbledon semi-finalist Julia Goerges. Some of tennis’ most exciting young players including Ashleigh Barty, Anett Kontaveit, Bianca Andreescu, Aryna Sabalenka and Qiang Wang will also be part of this year’s line-up.

Previous winners include some of the game's most iconic female tennis stars, with Billie Jean King, Martina Navratilova, Maria Sharapova, Ana Ivanovic and Angelique Kerber featuring on its illustrious roll of honour. 

The 2019 event will again feature a Schoolzone where up to 1500 children and young people from across the city will be able to take part in tennis activity as part of the LTA’s mission to open the sport up to more people.

Who said what?

Agbeze, who famously captained the England Netball team to victory at last year’s Commonwealth Games commented:

“It was great to be back in my home city and get on court with the girls and Claire and see how the preparations are going for the tournament. The Nature Valley Classic has always been a huge part of the city’s sporting calendar and some of the past winners have been real trailblazers for women’s sport.

"We’ve seen the impact that our success as a netball team has had in terms of getting more young girls playing and hopefully the recent Fed Cup success can do the same for tennis. This tournament is an amazing chance for girls to see some of the best players in the world on their doorstep and that can only help inspire them to pick up a racket and get into sport.”

LTA Midlands Coach of the Year, Claire Norman said:

“Ama and the England Netball team are such a huge inspiration to young girls across the country so it was amazing for the girls here today to get the chance to meet and get on court with her. It is important that young girls have positive female role models to look up to whether they are players or coaches. It can make a huge difference in getting them to take part in sport.”  

Leyla Ogan, Head of Racquets at Edgbaston Priory Club added:

“The tournament has a proud history of attracting the best female players in the world so we’re really excited to have our strongest ever line-up this year. The fact that the best players in the world return here year after year shows how well the tournament and the city is regarded. It really brings the tennis community in the West Midlands together and is a fantastic opportunity for people to come and see the best in the world at a superb venue.”

Catch courtside action this summer! 

Watch world class women's tennis in Birmingham and secure your seat today - Centre Court tickets are available from £20 per person