Your chance to support deaf tennis girl’s international debut

FREYA BARRY -- representing Britain at the European Deaf Tennis Championships.
FREYA BARRY -- representing Britain at the European Deaf Tennis Championships.
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A talented schoolgirl from Sandiacre has set up her own fundraising campaign to help pay for her international debut as a tennis player.

Eleven-year-old Freya Barry, who lives on Regent Street, flew out to Slovenia on Monday to represent Great Britain in a junior competition at the European Deaf Tennis Championships.

But there is still time to donate your support by visiting a special Pledge Sports page she has set up online at www.pledgesports.org.

On the page, Freya’s message reads: “I have been playing tennis for three years and train every day outside, in all weathers, at Attenborough Tennis Club. I also travel to London for one weekend per month to train with the British national deaf tennis squad.

“As well as on-court training, I do specific strengthening and conditioning exercise programme each day, and ensure I eat the correct foods to support the amount of exercise I do. I am very committed and determined to succeed and would greatly appreciate any support towards my coaching and travel costs for the Deaf European Championships in Slovenia.

“I am determined to pursue a career in deaf and hearing tennis, but need to increase my hours on court to enable me to continue to improve. Thankyou for helping.”

Freya, who goes to St John Houghton Catholic School in Kirk Hallam, is one of four players in the Team GB junior squad. The others are Esah Hayat, Toby Clifton and Phoebe Suthers.

Geraint Richards, the Tennis Foundation’s head of disability player performance, said: “We are delighted to have Freya making her international debut as the Tennis Foundation continues to nurture young talent to ensure a bright future for deaf tennis in Britain.”

The championships run until Saturday, and Freya returns home on Sunday. Proud mum Alison Horton described her call-up to the squad as “a great achievement”.