Published: August 11, 2010
Young Burnham-On-Sea tennis players celebrate success

Three young members of Burnham-On-Sea's Nathan Edwards Tennis Academy are celebrating success this week after performing well at a top tournament.

Oliver Punt, 8, Thomas Punt, 6, and Jonathan Bougourd, 8, competed against some of the UK's best players in their age group during Saturday's Torbay Open Tennis Tournament, which is the biggest event of its kind in England.

Now in its 112th year, it attracts junior and adult entries from all over the country, including many nationally ranked players.

The fourteen boys in the Under 8s category were split into two groups of seven and played each other, with the top two from each group going through to the semi-finals and final.

Oliver Punt came second in his group, and went on to reach the final, where he lost to Devon's Taylor Ingham-Hill, one of the highest-rated eight year-olds in the country.

"It was a great achievement and well deserved for all the hard work in training," the academy's Sally Edwards told

"Little brother Thomas was the youngest player there and won two matches against older boys. He also drew comments about his performance from a number of parents watching."

"While Jonathan Bougourd did not go through to the semis, he played two spectacular matches which drew a big crowd, including Simon Wheatley, one of the LTA's top talent ID coaches who said he wished he'd had the match on film to send to other tennis centres because it was probably the best 'red ball' matchplay he'd seen anywhere in the country this year."

Simon also watched the performances of Oliver and Thomas praised their ability and excellent technique.

After talking to Sally, he said he would like to look into getting LTA support for the academy.

Sally, coach Jamie Allen, and the families of the children felt very proud of the boys and are hopeful of gaining some recognition from the LTA.

The late Nathan Edwards played at the Torbay Open Tennis tournament as a teenager and many of his peers and friends are now top seeds there. Sally spent some of the week watching them and catching up on all their news.

The Nathan Edwards Tennis Academy is now part of the newly-formed tennis club 'Nathan Edwards Tennis' and is affiliated to the LTA. The club has been running tennis camps for children age six and over at King Alfred Sport's Centre for the first two weeks of the summer holidays and there will be a further camp running from Monday 23rd-27th August from 8.30am-4pm.

Half days are also available 8.30am-12pm and 12.30pm-4pm. Prices start at £20 for a full day with discounts for each additional day and there are big discounts for extra siblings.

Also, from September, the club will be running group coaching sessions for children and adults at the centre. For further details, contact Sally on 01278 784080 or by email at or Greg Kyd on 07576228245 or

Pictured (from top) Oliver Punt and Taylor Ingham-Hill with their trophies; Jonnie Bougourd in action; and Oliver with his proud family


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