On 11 February 2023, members of the tennis community from the University of Kent attended the Kent LTA (Lawn Tennis Association) awards, in which the University of Kent was involved in 4 separate categories: University of the Year, Rising Star of the Year, Junior Player of the Year, and Performance Coach of the Year.
“You might expect the University of Kent to win Kent LTA’s University of the Year award, but it does put us through to the regional round of voting in April. If we are successful, we will then go to the National round of voting in May and would be invited to Wimbledon to collect that award should we make it that far!
That said, it really has been a very successful year for us. Our Student Tennis Society, led by Sophie Kitson, deserve a lot of praise for the inclusive tennis programme now available to our Students, from beginner players to team players. We now have 4 men’s and 2 ladies’ teams competing in the BUCS leagues and regularly host internal competitions to get the students playing more often.
We’ve also increased staff tennis to include a playing session on Tuesdays and a coaching session on Thursdays, with a staff box league also starting up.
Our coaching workforce is developing, with 16 female students being trained as LTA Level 1 Assistants to bring more diversity into tennis coaching, and more coaching qualification opportunities are coming up.
Sophie Kitson was shortlisted as a ‘Rising Star’ of the year, which was won by Daniel Hodgson from Deal. We are very lucky to have Sophie as our Student President and she is also involved in line and chair umpiring at a high level – she’s worked at Wimbledon, Queens, and the recent Battle of the Brits!
Ruben Harris won Junior Player of the Year and Kent Sport is very proud to have been able to support his development. He won 3 gold medals in the National School Games, represented team GB Juniors at the World Team Cup (The wheelchair equivalent of the Davis Cup), and is currently ranked 15 in the world!!!
Ruben’s coach, Will Carnegie, won Performance Coach of the Year and trains with Ruben in our Tennis Centre on Tuesdays!”
Well done to everyone involved in tennis at the University of Kent. Some incredible things coming up and we’re all excited to see what’s next! Learn more about tennis at Kent on our tennis webpages.