HOBART residents Rebecca Flinn and Jed Plunkett-Smith rallied it out against regional tennis players from across the nation recently when they represented Tasmania at the Australian Made Foundation Cup in mid-January.
A joint initiative of the Australian Made Campaign and the Fed Cup Foundation, the tournament forms part of the Australian Made Summer of Tennis and gives children aged 13-and-under from rural and regional areas the opportunity to compete nationally.
“Cost and travel restraints often prevent rural and regional players from participating in high-level tennis and the Australian Made Foundation Cup gives country children the same opportunities as their city counterparts,” Fed Cup Foundation president Judy Dalton said.
Mr Plunkett-Smith and Miss Flinn secured their place on the state team after a series of trials that took place in Hobart in November last year.
They went on to join six other finalists who travelled to the Royal South Yarra Lawn Tennis Club in Victoria to test their skills at the national event.
Miss Flinn, who has been playing tennis for almost three-years, said she tried out for the state team because she thought it would be a “great experience” to play against some of the best 13-and-under tennis players in Australia.
“It was also a really good chance to catch up with some interstate players who I had met at previous tournaments, including the Super 10s national tournament and the Bruce Cup,” she said.
“Going into the tournament, I felt both pumped and nervous, but I was honoured to be given the chance to represent Tasmania on a national level.
“I think I matched up very well to the other players and our state team was very competitive.”
The Queensland boys’ and Victorian girls’ team won first place, with the Tasmanian girls’ team taking out fourth place and the boys’ team coming in sixth overall.
Training with tennis coach John Playle prior to the tournament, Miss Flinn said she was proud of how she performed at the event.
“I had some goals that I wanted to work toward, which included being aggressive and focusing on every shot,” she said.
“Overall, I felt I played very competitively and competed for every shot.”
Miss Flinn said she planned to enter more national tournaments in the future to help advance her game.
For more information about the Australian Made Federation Cup, visit www.australianmade.com.au.