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Culford School pupil Wendelken to make Wimbledon bow




Promising Horseheath teenager Harry Wendelken is set to make his Wimbledon debut today after being handed a wild card entry into Junior Wimbledon.

CULFORD: Tennis - Culford tennis duo rising up the European ratings.Culford Sports & Tennis Centre, Culford, nr Bury St Edmunds.Kylie Bilchev and Harry Wendelken..Picture Mark Westley. (2925222)
CULFORD: Tennis - Culford tennis duo rising up the European ratings.Culford Sports & Tennis Centre, Culford, nr Bury St Edmunds.Kylie Bilchev and Harry Wendelken..Picture Mark Westley. (2925222)

The 16-year-old Culford School Tennis Academy student, a former Haverhill Tennis Club member, will take on the 14th seed Juan Manuel Cerundolo of Argentina in the second match of the day on No 5 Court, on which play gets under way from 11.30am.

It has been a breakthrough 2018 so far for Wendelken, who claimed his first junior ITF tournament win in Hamburg, before helping lead Great Britain to the 16 & Under Tennis Europe Winter Cup by HEAD title.

Speaking to the Haverhill Echo and Bury Free Press at the end of February, he said the success had led him to believe he could revise his targets to play in his first Grand Slam this summer.

“My goal has changed now,” he said. “I know what I can do and what I can achieve.

“I was very pleased with my junior ITF win. Obviously with it being the first junior ITF tournament I’d won, it was quite a big achievement for me.

“I think as I was only seeded 11th for the tournament I was taking on bigger, stronger players than me, but I managed to do well and win it.

“I’m hoping to get my ranking up and qualify for junior Wimbledon, which would be my first Grand Slam.”

Wendelken, who views hard courts as his favoured surface, was ranked at 275 on the ITF circuit at the end of 2017, with that rising to a career high of 97 come April.

Today's Wimbledon opponent Cerundolo, also 16, is ranked inside the top 10 (9th) in March of this year and finished last year 24th.

The odds will be firmly stacked against the Culford School pupil, but with a fervent home support behind him, anything is possible.



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