GB win silver at Master’U BNP Paribas tournament
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Six of the country’s best university tennis players are celebrating after winning a silver medal at the Master U’ BNP Paribas – the world’s leading student tennis team tournament, cementing Great Britain’s growing reputation as one of the leading nations in the world for university tennis.
Taking place in Grenoble, France from 29 November - 1 December, it was an impressive week of competition for Great Britain, winning all of their rubbers in the first round against Italy (7-0) and losing just one match in the semi-final against Belgium. The team then faced off against USA in the final, with the USA successfully taking the gold – defending the title they had reclaimed from Great Britain in 2018.
Selected by BUCS and managed by the LTA, the GB team of Maia Lumsden (University of Stirling), Ella Taylor (Loughborough University), Emily Arbuthnott (Stanford University), Ben Jones (University of Bath), George Houghton (Loughborough University) and Daniel Little (University of Nottingham) competed against some the best university tennis players in the world, with teams from Belgium, China, France, Germany and Ireland all participating in the tournament.
University tennis in Great Britain and selection for the GB university team is increasingly becoming part of a platform for players to develop professional careers. Lumsden reached a career high of 250 in the WTA world rankings last month, while GB teammate and University of Bath scholar Jones, who made his Master’U debut last year, went on to win the first professional title of his career this summer.
Other GB team alumni include Jonny O’Mara, who played alongside Lumsden in the historic 2017 Master’U win, and who reached a career high doubles world ranking of 44 this year.
Speaking about the team’s result, LTA Universities Manager, Alistair Higham, said:
“We're very pleased with the progress we are making in GB student tennis team and this result is more evidence of not only the team spirit we have but also the professional training programmes we now have at the universities where these players train at Bath, Loughborough, Nottingham and Stirling. It's our favourite event of the year. All the players who have played it in the last ten years have loved it."
“University tennis in Britain is really thriving at the moment, with the significant investment in facilities and commitment to delivering tennis programmes from universities across the country in recent years now paying dividends. This year will see the highest number of teams ever compete in BUCS tennis, while at an international level our GB student team has won an unprecedented nine medals in the last four years.”