Barclays Ball Kids
The 2012 Barclays Ball Kids Squad is selected!
The Westway Sports Centre, in London’s Shepherd Bush, saw 100 exuberant kids take to the stage last Saturday for the final of Barclays Ball Kids; a nationwide search to find 30 of the best ball kids in the UK to star at the end of season Barclays ATP World Tour Finals at The O2 in November.
The very best 12-16 year olds from all over the country were up at the crack of dawn, with some setting off the day before and travelling over ten hours by car, to get to the national trial. For some of the kids it was their last chance to prove they have what it takes to be one of the best ball kids in the UK.
All 100 participants were put through their paces in a gruelling 6 hour trial which saw exhaustion, broken ankles and dehydration play a major part in picking out the best from the rest. This really was one of the toughest displays of endurance that any of these kids will ever have had to partake in and the determination from each and every one was there to be seen by the expectant crowd in the gantries.
With hoards of parents looking on and pumping music accompanying their every move, the trial proved the perfect test for whittling down the 100 finalists into a final squad of 30 exceptionally talented individuals. And throughout the day, all the kids had the chance to pick up some top tips from Andy Murray’s former coach Mark Petchey, as well as former World Number 4 Greg Rusedski.
It was a great day out for all involved and the coaching team had to make some tough decisions to pick the squad they felt would represent the true essence of what it means to be a Barclays Ball Kids. They had to look for the kids that would shine on court, the ones that had it in them to deliver the best performances in front of the world’s top 8 male tennis players at The O2 in November.
After much deliberation, the final 30 kids to be chosen by the Barclays Ball Kids Talent ID Team were Abiola Adeseye, Abby Amos, Leon Bailey, Emily Bearne, Reiga Belcher, Holly Bennett, Alex Chan, Laurie Clark, Christiana Corbyn, Jessica de Mulder, Sophie Drakeford-Lewis, Prashant Duggal, Olivia James, Sam Judd, Jack Kearton, Benjamin Mason, Paula Mazur, Taylor Moss, Serena Nash, Gianpiero Placidi, Mark Pratt, James Reddy, Daisy Reed, Rebeca Richardson, Josiah Simmons, Jake Southwick, Patrick Styles, Nicole Thackray, Rohan Trainor and Katty Weymouth.
Yet it has to be said that all 100 kids that took part were exceptional in almost all areas. Unfortunately, only 30 places were on offer and therefore some phenomenal talent was left behind. So thank you to all the entrants that made it to the final trial. You have not let yourselves down, that is for sure. And good luck to the final 30 as you head towards The O2 for what can only be described as a once in a lifetime opportunity.
Please see below for a full list of the 2012 Barclays Ball Kid Squad.
Abiola Adeseye 15yrs London
Abby Amos 15yrs Market Harborough
Leon Bailey 14yrs Haverhill
Emily Bearne 15yrs Salisbury
Reiga Belcher 13yrs Bournemouth
Holly Bennett 14yrs Lewes
Alex Chan 13yrs Middx
Laurie Clark 14yrs Bolton
Christiana Corbyn 15yrs Tadworth
Jessica De Mulder 15yrs Reading
Sophie Drakeford-Lewis 13yrs Sonning
Prashant Duggal 15yrs Sale
Olivia James 16yrs Southampton
Sam Judd 14yrs East Horsley
Jack Kearton 14yrs Colchester
Benjamin Mason 16yrs Portchester
Paula Mazur 13yrs West Ewell
Taylor Moss 13yrs Liverpool
Serena Nash 14yrs Bradford
Gianpiero Placidi 14yrs Bournemouth
Mark Pratt 13yrs Bristol
James Reddy 14yrs Morden
Daisy Reed 14yrs Northampton
Rebeca Richardson 13yrs Tyne & Wear
Josiah Simmons 15yrs Gillingham
Jake Southwick 14yrs Mitcham
Patrick Styles 14yrs Stowmarket
Nicole Thackray 15yrs Budleigh Salterton
Rohan Trainor 15yrs Coventry
Katty Weymouth 14yrs London
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