Norrie says LTA are to blame for British tennis boom
Cameron Norrie believes the LTA’s support networks for new talent has been at the heart of the boom in British tennis over the last year.
Norrie, 26, claimed his first grass court win of the season at the LTA’s Rothesay International at Eastbourne - where he is the top seed - with a 6-4 6-2 win over Brandon Nakashima.
But the Londoner is far from the only Brit to have tasted success on the south coast this week, with Monday and Tuesday a sea of home success as Jack Draper, Ryan Peniston, Jodie Burrage, Dan Evans and Katie Boulter all picked up big wins.
This backs up a year that has seen Emma Raducanu win the US Open, Norrie win his first ATP 1000 tile at Indian Wells and Jack Draper break into the world’s top 100 for the first time, with the LTA’s network of support that includes physical, psychological and financial backing for all British players aiding their success.
Now the nation’s No.1 player has suggested the young talent coming through are now better equipped to deal with tight matches against the top-ranked players.
“A lot of the (British) players are maturing,” he said. “They have a little bit more experience to handle those moments a bit better.
“I knew watching Peni (Ryan Peniston) that he had the level, I thought that when I played him in the Battle of Brits before.
“He was comfortable in those bigger moments that decided his match against Casper Ruud last week.
“I think the LTA and the people around the players are really good influences and it makes a difference.
“There is no secret as to why there is a big group of talented guys and girls coming through.
“We’ve got Felix Gill, Arthur Fery, Aidan McHugh and obviously Jack (Draper) leading those boys.
“I don’t see why they can’t push through and reach the top, especially with the good influences from the LTA who I think are doing a tremendous job.”
Norrie secured his place in the last eight at Eastbourne with the win and could next face an all-British clash with Dan Evans, should he beat Maxime Cressy.
A first title on the south east coast would provide him with the ultimate confidence boost ahead of Wimbledon next week.
And Norrie, who will be seeded ninth at his home Grand Slam, wants to keep the feel good factor around British tennis going ahead of the All England Club.
“It’s great, I’m really looking forward to it,” he added. “Being seeded helps, but I’ll have to take it one match at time.
“I’ve still not reached the second week at Wimbledon, so that has to be my aim. It would be nice to do that.
“I think I’ve played well recently in the other Grand Slams and consistently made the third round.
“I don’t see why I can’t, if I bring more of the same and execute my game I can (reach the second week).
“Hopefully I’ll get a few more matches this week and that will help.”
For the latest action on the British summer grass court season, check out the LTA Website