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Katie Swan On How It Really Feels To Be A Wimbledon Wildcard

© Lottie Bea Spencer

For her Wimbledon debut yesterday, she beat the 25th best player in the world...

Female British tennis players broke a Wimbledon record this year when they earned six of the eight coveted Wildcard places in the oldest tennis tournament in the world. Katie Boulter, Harriet Dart, Katy Dunne, Gabriella Taylor, Naomi Broady and Katie Swan all scooped a spot, and together they’re being dubbed the next generation of top tennis players. We spoke to youngest of the group, 19-year-old Katie Swan, who in her Wimbledon debut beat the 25th best player in the world, Irina-Camelia Begu, to understand just how someone so young becomes a Wimbledon Wildcard…

‘I loved [tennis] literally from the very first ball,’ says Katie, who was introduced to the game at age seven, when her mum arranged tennis lessons for her while on a family holiday to Portugal. ‘Even though the lessons were meant to be a bit of fun, I was really intent on learning the skills quickly and was so focused on the sessions,’ she continued, ‘one of the coaches noticed that I had a natural eye for the sport and encouraged me to take some more lessons when I returned from holiday, which I did, and the rest is history.’