Grammar school tennis aces make National Finals

Aylesbury Grammar School's tennis made the National Schools Finals
Aylesbury Grammar School's tennis made the National Schools Finals

Aylesbury Grammar School’s tennis team has made it through to the prestigious National Schools Finals for a second consecutive year.

The AGS team of Gavin McKinlay, Jack Clark, Dean Kelleher, Thomas Schmidt and Ben Willis made it through an extremely tough draw to qualify for the finals which take place in Sheffield this week.

All the boys are part of Halton Tennis Centre’s Every Ball International Academy and have impressed throughout the rounds.

On their way to making the finals, AGS beat Radley (Oxon) and Bradfield (Berkshire) comprehensively before ending the run of Abingdon (Oxon).

The final qualification match was against St Mary’s College in Basingstoke and all the boys played superb tennis to find themselves in the draw for the elite schools competition.

The finals in Sheffield got under way on Monday where AGS were drawn to play seeds Bournemouth who knocked them out in the semi-finals of the same competition last year.

Rackets coach Darren Withey said he was delighted for the team, whose ranking last year was three.

“It’s especially great as three of the boys are playing in an older age group and competing with confidence and maturity.

“The future of tennis at the school looks to be in safe hands and special thanks should go to Halton and it’s program for the boys.

The boys’ club coach was also happy for his players and says they have every opporunity to make a career within the game.

“We have a longlasting rel ationship with Aylesbury Grammar School and their players train extensively with us at the Academy,” said Halton head coach James Morgan.

“The school has been highly supportive to our players over the years with regards their tennis committments.

“I’m delighted to see the boys in the final and there have been some terrific fighting performances to get them there.

“I know them like the back of my arm and I’m sure that in some shape or form they will go on to have careers in tennis.”