Ipswich: Christine Truman gives tennis tips to rising star

Maddie McGloughlin and Christine Truman.

Maddie McGloughlin and Christine Truman. - Credit: Archant

Ipswich: A former professional tennis player visited a school in Ipswich last week to give some coaching to one of Suffolk’s future stars.

Christine Truman, who was the youngest winner of the French and Italian championships in 1959, and a former Wimbledon finalist in 1961, visited UK junior champion Maddie McGloughlin at Orwell Park School to offer advice, playing tips, and engage in a few serves with Maddie during the visit on October 8.

Maddie, 11, who became junior champion in July, was thrilled to share a court with, in her words, “a tennis legend,” and get some expert advice from someone who has been at the top of the sport.

Ms Truman, 73, from Aldeburgh, said: “I think she’s a very hard worker, sensible and talented. I liked her attidtude and her approach, and it will be interesting to watch her develop.”

Alec Brunt, director of sports at Orwell Park School, said: “Christine met with Maddie and our two county tennis teams, which are the county tennis champions from last summer.


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Maddie was very pleased and excited, and it was a great opportunity to get some tips from a former professional player.”

Maddie, who won her first national championship aged nine, was Suffolk’s number one player in the Lionel Cox U10 trophy, leading the team to an unbeaten victory, and has since been successful in the county finals.

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Mr Brunt added, “She is an outstanding talent. She puts a lot of hard work into her tennis, and she has strength and conditioning training too, Hopefully in the years to come she can go far.”

Ms Truman, who still works a lot with junior players in Alderburgh, believes the next step for Maddie is to join a tour. She said: “I hope we will see her go on a tour. It would be a good experience to benefit from but it’s very hard work.”

As a UK junior champion herself in the 1950s, Ms Truman started out in a similar way to Maddie, but the junior schedule now runs for longer than it did when Ms Truman was a champion.

“It is similar really, but the junior tour was very much more school holiday time. Maddie is playing on weekends and throughout the year.”

While Maddie is making good progress through her junior career, Ms Truman welcomes a new generation getting into the sport.

“When you read so much about children not doing sport, it’s very refreshing to see them getting into it. The more people we can get outside and playing the better.”

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