Call for all-girl groups to encourage tennis take-up
- Credit: PA
All-female groups and female coaches are the key to encouraging more girls and women to take up tennis, according to one club chairman.
Kelvin van Hasselt, from the Cromer Lawn Tennis and Squash Club, called on clubs to be more pro-active in attracting female players, rather than relying on high-profile events such as Emma Raducanu's US Open victory to "do the work for them".
Mr van Hasselt said: "Many girls feel much more comfortable in a girls-only group. I'm a coach, and when you have a mixed group you might have four or five girls who want to learn, but if you add a couple of disruptive boys they can ruin the atmosphere.
"This is a very basic, practical step that clubs can take."
Mr van Hasselt said female coaches also made tennis more appealing to girls and women. He said Cromer tennis club's junior programme only had about 30 girls compared with 80 boys - an imbalance they were working hard to address.