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Jersey ace Stuart Parker was encouraged by his display during an opening-round Wimbledon qualifying defeat to Alexander Ritschard, writes Sportsbeat's Oli Dickson-Jefford.
Parker, who benefits from the LTA Top 25 programme which allows access to the NTC courts and facilities for the top 25 ranked British male and female players on ATP/WTA rankings and has also benefited from the LTA’s enhanced Performance Competition Calendar that has provided more tournament opportunities in the UK this year, fell 4-6 6-1 6-2 to the Swiss.
Despite admitting there was some disappointment, the 24-year-old was happy with his progress having come through pre-qualifying to reach this stage.
He said: “I think I started very strong. I was giving myself a lot of chances. I went up a break straight away and I was playing some good stuff, I felt pretty comfortable on court.
— LTA (@the_LTA) June 20, 2022
“Second set and third set, I was giving myself a lot of chances, a lot of break points, wasn’t able to take them. I’ll have a look at that, why I wasn’t able to take them, stuff like that.
“I think overall it’s a positive step. It’s disappointing, but I think it showed that I had the level to play.
“I had to go through pre-qualies, I had to win it, which I actually think was a good thing for because then to win three matches, I felt pretty comfortable and felt like I deserved to be here.
“It was a good scenario for me.”
— LTA (@the_LTA) June 21, 2022
Having now had the experience of competing in qualifying, Parker now wants to push to reach this stage more regularly at Grand Slam tournaments.
“For me, it’ll be trying to get onto the Challenger Tour more regularly, playing main draw Challengers, and then building up to Grand Slam qualifying,” Parker added.
“Those are my goals, my next steps.”