Fed Cup squad join up with West Ham Women for tennis football fun at Copper Box
PUBLISHED: 13:34 17 April 2019 | UPDATED: 13:34 17 April 2019
Great Britain’s female players joined up with West Ham United Women this week ahead of the Fed Cup World Group play-off at the Copper Box Arena.
Johanna Konta, Katie Boulter, Heather Watson, Harriet Dart and Katie Swan took time out from their training schedule to take part in a friendly game of tennis football with Tessel Middag, Brianna Visalli, Anna Moorhouse and Brooke Hendrix, against the backdrop of east London's Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.
And they were joined by Lola Abara, L'Shanti Gordon, Faiza Rahman and Ami Lewis from West Ham United Foundation's youth forum, who had the chance to meet and chat with players.
The activity was part of a number of events taking place across the week in local schools and venues as part of the historic tie with up to 10,000 children expected to take part.
GB's Fed Cup tie against Kazakhstan takes place over the Easter weekend, with two singles matches from 1.30pm on Saturday followed by reverse singles and doubles on Easter Sunday form middway.
Captain Anne Keovathong, who competed in the London 2012 Olympics, said: “I'm delighted to name our strongest possible team to represent Great Britain at the Copper Box Arena against Kazakhstan.
“It promises to be a memorable occasion as we aim to reach the world group level for the first time since 1993, against the iconic backdrop of Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in East London, a place that has special significance for me.
“There is little to separate the two teams in terms of rankings but I'm confident the home fans will give all our players an inspirational lift.
“It's also very important to our team to open up our sport to new fans and increase awareness of tennis at different times of year.”
Oliver Scadgell, participation director at the LTA, added: “Bringing the Fed Cup to East London isn't just about giving people a chance to watch world-class international tennis. We want to leave a lasting impact and are providing a range of opportunities for the local community to get involved in tennis.”
Families in Tower Hamlets, Newham, Hackney and Waltham Forest are being given the chance to play for free at one of 14 fun open weekends as part of the LTA's Nature Valley Big Tennis Weekends.
“Fed Cup ticket prices start from £6 for children and £12 for adults. See lta.org.uk/FedCup.