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University of Stirling tennis aces crowned best in Britain

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Student tennis players at the University of Stirling are celebrating a stunning sweep of University league titles.

Stirling’s three men’s teams and the women’s team all won their respective leagues in an excellent season for performance tennis at Scotland’s University for Sporting Excellence.

The men’s first team remained unbeaten all season in the British Premier North, claiming impressive scalps against Loughborough University (12-0) and second-placed Durham University (10-2).

It was the first Premier success for Stirling since ATP World Tour doubles star Colin Fleming amongst their ranks in 2007.

In the Scottish leagues, the men’s second team and the women’s team also enjoyed undefeated charges to their respective titles, while the third team lost just once en route to the Scottish Conference 1A.

And competing in the same division, the men’s fourth team avoided relegation – an impressive feat when competing against most University second teams.

Tennis Co-ordinator Nick Hatchett, who helped the first team to success, said: “It is an amazing achievement and for so many of the teams to be unbeaten is testament to the strength in depth at the club. We are fortunate to get to practise all week at such excellent facilities and with great coaching. It has been a big club effort and everyone has been cheering each other on. We all won the leagues at different times so there have been plenty of parties to celebrate.”

The teams feature a blend of students on the International Sports Scholarship Programme and talented club players, coming from the UK, France, Finland, Latvia, Cyprus and the USA.

They have been kept in shape throughout the season thanks to regular court time on campus at the Scottish National Tennis Centre and with additional support services from Fitness Officer Maria Omma and Yoga instructor Sandy Martin.

University of Stirling Tennis High Performance Coach and Tennis Scotland Academy Coach Euan McGinn said: “It has probably been the best season in the 10 years I have been here at the University of Stirling and it comes down to the fact everyone has worked together. I’m very proud of all their performances throughout the year.

“University tennis is a great option for developing young players as going straight into full-time tennis and trying to make it onto the tour is unbelievably tough. Study not only gives you a career option, but coming to University helps you develop mentally and physically for the rigours of life as a tour player.”

Stirling now has the Team Championship trophy in its sights, with a semi-final showdown on Saturday 21 April against London Metropolitan University.

The University tennis programme is kindly supported by the Tennis Foundation and by Tennis Scotland. Last month, former world No.4 Greg Rusedski visited through his role with the Lawn Tennis Association and discovered how Stirling’s programme is supporting promising Scottish teenager Jonny O’Mara.

Tennis teams 

Men’s 1st team: Rihards Emulins, Joe Gill, Nick Hatchett, Jordan McCulloch and Nick Rosenzweig.

Women’s 1st team: Aimee Black, Julie Dalgetty, Claire McCulloch, Hannah Pickford, Jamie Smith and Jennifer Steel.

Men’s 2nd team: Cameron Malik, Jack Paterson, Robbie Price, Adam

Men’s 3rd team: Alex Kamieniekci, Andrew MacLeod, James Swanson, Harris Rollinger, Justin Taylor, Ross Shepherd and Omari Whyne. Stevenson and Jordan Young.

Men’s 4th team: Jonny Adamson, Jeremie Courtois, Fraser Hamilton, Remzi Hidiroglu, Rob Higton, Matti Kapyla, Chris Logan, Will Smith and Jonathan Wilcox.

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