For many years British tennis remained in the doldrums, but with the arrival of players like Andy Murray and Heather Watson the future is looking bright. On her way up the rankings is Britains No.4, Katy Dunne who divides her training between Halton Tennis Club where she works with Mike James and Dom King, and Northwood JTC where she is coached by Alan Jones and Jo Durie (former World No.4). I caught up with Katy recently to ask her about her life on the professional tennis circuit.
At what age did you start playing tennis?
I started playing tennis at 3, because my brother used to play and I always had to go to the club with him!
Who was your role model when growing up?
I used to love Ana Ivanovic but now I’m more for Maria Sharapova because her mentality is so good.
What sacrifices have you had to make in order to pursue a career as a professional tennis player?
I made the decision to leave school at the end of year 9 which was really difficult for me because I loved school (more the social part) And then there’s all the parties you miss!
What is your training regime to stay in top shape?
I train 4-5 hours a day(usually 3-3.5 hours of tennis and 1-2 of fitness) from Monday to Friday and I do an hour of fitness on Saturday mornings!
Which is your favourite tournament and why?
I think my favourite tournament was French Open Juniors. Probably because I had a very close 3 set match in the 2nd round which hauled in a massive crowd so the atmosphere was awesome. I also got to have a interview on ITV with John Inverdale and we were using the same changing rooms and restaurants as the professionals so Nadal and Federer would just saunter past and almost brush shoulders with you.
Which surface do you feel more confident on and why?
I’d probably say the grass. My game suits it pretty well but then I do love a hard court. That is what I train on, day in, day out.
What has been the high point of your career so far?
The high point was qualifying for Birmingham WTA where I had some of my best wins and took a set off a top 50 player. It was also surreal being in the same draw as my idol when I was younger…Ana Ivanovic!!
Outside of your busy schedule what do you do to relax?
Lying on the sofa watching a lot of TV haha! Seeing my friends, cooking and trying to find something fun to do like paint balling which I still haven’t got round to doing.
Although Katy has some support from the LTA, she will need further financial backing as she moves up the rankings and travels around the world to higher tournaments. She would very much like to pay for her own travelling coach so that she could be trained ‘on the road.’ A place in this year’s Wimbledon main draw would help her to achieve this and she is working hard towards that goal.
Anyone interested in sponsoring Katy please contact her on firstname.lastname@example.org