Three Williamstown-trained tennis young guns have been selected to represent the School Sports Victoria 12-and-under team at the Bruce Cup Tennis Championships in Shepparton later this year.
Stephanie Webb, Grace Darcy and Harriet Stewart, who train under coach James Wong at the Bayside Williamstown campus courts, will take on the best schoolgirls from across the nation after qualifying for the Big V team.
Wong was thrilled to see this trio chosen.
“It’s just their work rate and dedication and the goals they aspire to achieve,” he said.
“The journey they’ve been on has been filled with hard work and they’ve obviously had to make sacrifices.
“They’ve also had some setbacks with injury, but come back strong.
“They’re quite resilient girls and have strong support from their parents, so they’re definitely on the right track.”
Webb, who travels to Williamstown from Northcote High School for training, is one of Victoria’s most exciting talents for her age group.
Ranked No.1 in the state, she possesses a big serve and is strong from the baseline, but her best asset is her mental toughness.
Nothing seems to faze her on a tennis court.
“She’s far above anyone else in Victoria for her age group,” Wong said. “She’s definitely got all the attributes to go far in this sport. She dropped only one game in all of the trials.”
Darcy has been coached by Wong for six years.
The Newport resident was forced to take the long route to selection due to a lower ranking. But the Loreto Mandeville Hall student took it all in her stride and emerged with a Victorian nod.
“She had to do an extra day of trials compared to the other girls and she blitzed them,” Wong said.
“She didn’t drop many games and didn’t drop a match at all during trials, so she made it through very comfortably.
“She’s quite a rangy sort of girl and quite a big server, so she’s starting to use her power and her athletic attributes.”
Stewart, a Williamstown resident, had to battle through the pain barrier to earn selection.
The Williamstown High School student entered the qualifiers with a shoulder injury, but battled through.
“Her preparation wasn’t great going in, but just her courage and fight to make the team was great,” Wong said. “She fought really hard.”