Purley brothers Jack and Toby Clifton claimed five trophies between them at the National Deaf Tennis Championships over the May Day Bank Holiday Weekend

08 May
08 May

Earlier in the Championships Jack reached the semi-finals of the men’s singles without dropping a game before bowing out to eventual champion Fletcher, 6-0, 7-6(1). He was also runner-up in the mixed doubles; partnering Middlesex’s Valerie Copenhagen, after they reached another final for the loss of just one game and then put up a creditable performance despite slipping to a 6-2, 6-3 loss to defending champions Willcox and Beth Simmons.

“I am very happy to have won my first National doubles title. Lewis and I worked well together as a team and we are going to keep working together to ensure that we keep improving ahead of future events,” said Jack, who had been playing tennis for a few years before his mum read about deaf tennis in 2007 and contacted the Tennis Foundation. He played his first National Championships in 2008.. “It has given me real confidence and belief in my game and I hope my title will be the first of many.”

“Overall, I was delighted with my performances. In the singles semi-final Lewis played unbelievably well. After the first set I knew I had to change something and I gave him a much better game in the second set to take him to the tiebreak. I was really happy to have recovered from the first set and I learned a lot about myself,” added Jack, who was also named Male Player of the Year at the British Deaf Tennis Awards on the eve of the finals after a number of eye-catching performances in national and international competition in 2014.

A quarter-finalist in the men’s singles and third in the men’s doubles, Toby also finished runner-up to Hayat in the junior boys’ singles, reaching the final without dropping a game. He was a runner-up, too, in the boys’ doubles after a closely-fought final that had Woking twins George and Patrick Kilcullen on either side of the net. Toby and George Kilcullen lost out to Hayat and Patrick Kilcullen 4-1, 5-4(5).

Organised by the Tennis Foundation, the 2015 National Championships gave members of the National Deaf Tennis Squad the chance to put in eye-catching performances ahead of the selection of the British team to contest the first World Deaf Tennis Championships, which will take place in Nottingham in July. Tickets for the World Championships cost £5, please visit www.worlddeaftennischamps.co.uk   for more information.

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Reaching Potential

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