Stowmarket’s Patrick Styles admits his chance to share a court with US Open and Olympic champion Andy Murray at the ATP World Tour Finals cannot come quick enough.
After winning a nationwide competition from 2,500 children across the country, the 14-year-old will be one of 30 Barclays Ball Kids at the O2 Arena in London, starting Monday, November 5.
Styles spent his half-term at The Hampshire Racquets and Health Club being put through his paces ready for the week in the spotlight in the capital.
And while the Woodbridge School pupil is expecting a tough week’s work at the O2, Styles cannot wait to get acquainted with Murray and the rest of the world’s top players.
“The training has been really tiring but so fun at the same time,” he said.
“We have been working very hard to make sure we are prepared for the O2 tournament and I feel ready now to go out there.
“It will be pretty amazing to be on the same court as people like Roger Federer and Andy Murray.
“We have to watch the match so that we know what the score is but at the same time not lose concentration on what we are doing.”
More than 20,000 spectators a day will see Styles in action at the eight-day season finale, which sees the cream of world tennis go head-to-head for total prize money of nearly three million pounds.
And while itching to get started, the former Helmingham Primary School pupil believes there will be more than a few nerves when he steps out onto court for the first time later this month.
“Of course it will be pretty nerve-wracking the first time that we go out there,” he added.
“But I know we have all worked hard and we have been down to the O2 to check it out already so we should be fine.
“I just can’t wait for it to get started.”
n For more information on becoming a Barclays Ball Kid at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in London visit www.barclaysballkids.com