Posted 20th Mar

News and Stories by Nino Severino

We are very pleased to announce that Ipswich Sports Club, have now joined us for this summer’s Ipswich Tennis Road Show schedule, also hosting the free follow-on tennis session at their venue.

Our Primary School’s Tennis Road Show’s schedule is relentless, our aim across 2024 is to continue to introduce tennis to thousands of children. One of our events in March was at Sidegate Primary School, spending the whole week delivering our sessions to every pupil in the school.

Our team are driven by the passion for our wonderful game of tennis, and the benefits we see it adding to the lives of young children who join our great British Tennis family.

Joining the sport of tennis as a young child can add so many positives to their lives, and we see this happening on a week-to-week basis. We are very proud of the letters we receive from parents, telling us how tennis has literally transformed their child’s life.


Joe was born with chronic asthma and had spent his first Christmas in hospital on a ventilator.  For the first few years of Joe’s life, he had to take steroids for his asthma and life wasn’t always easy for him. 

EBF attended Joe’s school, Dale Hall, in May when Joe was almost 7.  Joe attended 3 free sessions with EBF and enjoyed it so much that he started attending some sessions with on Saturday mornings.

When Joe’s sister started school in September, Joe’s mum changed her hours at work, which meant that Joe was able to attend sessions with EBF during the week, as well as at weekends.  Joe also started having individual lessons in October.  When Joe started competing at red ball, werealised that he would need to up his game if he wanted to be the best he could be at tennis, so his training programme escalated very quickly and in January, Joe was attending 5 sessions per week.

In the early part of that year, Joe had been taken off his asthma steroids and had lost a massive amount of weight.  In July, Joe is no longer classed as asthmatic and has lost almost 3 stone.  Playing tennis with EBF and doing lots more exercise has helped Joe, I have no doubt that he would have been an obese child still on steroids if he hadn’t joined EBF. 

As well as Joe’s health and weight improving, his confidence has soared, and he has made some brilliant friends at EBF.  I recently received Joe’s school report which was excellent and words like ‘attention to detail’, ‘discipline’, ‘gives 100% every lesson’ and ‘very popular student’ shone out of his school report.

Now, almost at the age of 10, Joe loves life, he loves going to school and his love for the tennis court grows every time he trains. 


Lewis joined the EBF academy in September at the age of 6.  He has always loved sports and it was not long before he was asking to increase his squads so he could spend more time with his new friends.

The coaching has been set to strike the right balance between having fun and teaching the players discipline and respect which is a great foundation not only for sports but for life in general.

He has formed a great passion for the sport and was thrilled to enter his first tournament after being with the academy for only a few months. Not long after turning 7 he was nominated by the academy to attend a county fun day which he followed up again 6 months later where he was then asked to attend the LTA Regional training camps, getting a day off school every 6-8 weeks to travel to Hertfordshire for the training.

Every year the academy has a Christmas party to celebrate the achievements of the players, it is a great occasion with parents, children and coaches getting together in a relaxed environment to have some fun. Lewis has been lucky enough to have received the best new player in his first year and more recently player of the year for the Academy. 

Nino and the team around him have lots of experience which they readily share with the children as well as providing many unique experiences such as the opportunity to attend a training session at the National Training Centre with Anne Keothavong and clay court training in London.

Last summer Lewis was given the fantastic opportunity to be a mascot in the men’s final at Queens where he went out on to court with Andy Murray as he won another Queens tournament. That was an unbelievable experience for a 7 year old and something he will never forget.

It is now coming up to 2 years since Lewis’s first day at the academy, his passion for the sport has increased and he is now training around 8 hours a week and regularly entering tournaments. The atmosphere at the academy and the support they provide has helped him to develop and become a more confident and outgoing child.

by Wendy Henderson