Dukes Meadows Tennis Sponsors Young Disabled Player

Esperanza Merry overcomes illness to continue her promising tennis career


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A 12-year old girl who was recently diagnosed with a life-changing illness has been presented with a special sports wheelchair by Dukes Meadows Tennis centre to enable her to take part in international tennis competitions.

Bronze Paralympic medallist Lucy Shuker inspired Esperanza

Esperanza Merry who is originally from Plymouth but has been training in Dukes Meadows Golf and Tennis Centre in Dan Mason Drive for several years, will be heading off as part of the GB Junior Team for the 2013 BNP Paribas World Team Cup in Turkey later this month.

On Friday 17 th May, Dukes Meadows Tennis Centre, Chiswick, sponsored her new bespoke sports wheelchair and wished her the best of luck with her future tennis career.

Determined not to give up on her love for tennis Esperanza took up wheelchair tennis following her diagnosis five months ago and in a short space of time she has gone from strength to strength. Esperanza has also been invited by Aad Zwaan, one of the world’s best wheelchair tennis coaches, to train in the Netherlands and hopes that will set her on the road to Rio 2016.

Mobility is the most important aspect for a wheelchair tennis player and a customised sports chair is very expensive yet crucial for Esperanza to develop to her full potential. The contribution of a new bespoke tennis wheelchair from Dukes Meadows, the Dan Maskell Tennis Trust and the Lord’s Taverners will be invaluable to her future in her chosen sport.

Britain’s highest ranking wheelchair tennis player, Lucy Shuker commented:
“For someone so young, Esperanza is an inspiration. Having had a promising able bodied career ahead of her, she has embraced her life changing condition and has become one of wheelchair tennis’ brightest prospects. Her attitude towards the game is remarkable and she brings something so special to the world of wheelchair tennis. As a true Paralympic medal prospect, I think her story will serve to inspire more people to take part in disability sport.”

Dukes Meadows’ Tennis Academy director James Lenton said: “After presenting Esperanza with the London Under 10 Championship trophy in her earlier years we knew she was very talented. Her skill and determination are inspiring to everyone and we at Dukes Meadows are thrilled to be involved in her journey at such a young age. With the help of Lucy Shuker’s coaching and encouragement, GB’s successful Paralympic legacy will live on through Esperanza and Dukes Meadows can support this with the vital bespoke wheelchair donation”.

James Lenton was a top ten British senior before his retirement aged 21 and has 20 years experience of which 10 years was as an LTA National coach, helping some of the best names in British Tennis win national and international prizes.

May 18, 2013

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