Harrogate youngster takes step towards World Tour finals role

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One lucky youngster from Harrogate has taken a step closer to his dream of becoming a ball boy at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals held at London’s O2 Arena in November.

Matthew MacGregor attended the Barclays Ball Kids regional trials at the David Lloyd Trafford Club in Manchester last Saturday, and has made it through to the final stage of the selection process to become a Barclays Ball.

The 14-year-old Harrogate Grammar student was one of over 100 children that took part in the Barclays Ball Kids regional selection trials held at the weekend. Showing impressive athleticism, agility, endurance, co-ordination, ball skills, balance, speed and team work the Barclays Ball Kids Talent ID Team selected him to be put through to the final.

Matthew was thrilled to have made it through to the final stage in London:

“It would be amazing to be on court with all the top players, I’ve been to the event before and it was the best atmosphere. I got given a leaflet at my local tennis club about Barclays Ball Kids and thought I’d give it a go. I think they are looking for someone who has natural ball skills and is confident and fit. It would literally be a dream come true if I made it through to the final squad.”

He was alongside just ten other child to be chosen and he has now made it through to the final 100 kids in the UK to be picked for the final selection trial in London on April 28th.

Head Trainer of the Barclays Ball Kids Talent ID Team, Mark Magrath has also been involved with the selection and training of the Wimbledon Championships Ball Boys and Girls. “We had a fantastic array of talent in Manchester this weekend,” said Magrath.

“A lot of kids turned up, it was a great trial, very competitive with a lot of strong athletes.

“It was really nice to see kids that play a variety of different sports to such a high standard as well as a lot of tennis players and it made our job really difficult when selecting the kids for the National Selection trials.”