“I don’t know where to start with the difference tennis has made to my life!” – GB Deaf Tennis Player Phoebe Suthers
This weekend GB deaf tennis star Phoebe Suthers from Yorkshire should have been flying to Slovenia in a bid to try and retain the women’s singles and doubles titles she won at the Slovenia Deaf Tennis Open in 2018. The event is held every two years and would have coincided with this week’s annual Deaf Awareness Week. Here, Phoebe looks back on her tennis journey and we hear how she is handling life during lockdown.
Born deaf, Phoebe’s love for tennis began at the age of eight in school PE lessons, with her school subsequently suggesting she attend ‘Come & Try’ sessions at Huddersfield Lawn Tennis and Squash Club to further nurture her talent.
The Elland youngster was already part of junior squads at her home tennis centre when, in 2013, her mum saw an advert about deaf tennis. Together they attended an LTA (former Tennis Foundation) Deaf Tennis Camp and later that year Phoebe competed in her first National Deaf Tennis Championships, where she met Catherine Fletcher, the LTA’s National Deaf Tennis Coach.