Ruby joins GB team

DOWNEND padel player Ruby Mathias is celebrating a call-up to represent Great Britain.

The Downend School Year 7 pupil took up padel – which is similar to tennis but played on a smaller, enclosed court where the ball can be bounced off the sides, as in squash – last year.

She won her first open tournament within months and since then has been training hard and enjoying success in Lawn Tennis Association and other padel competitions.

Ruby was invited to two days of trials, in Derby and Bristol club Rocket Padel, and was selected for the GB under-14 team.

Dad Stuart Mathias said: “The two day selection process was both physically and mentally draining and Ruby was exhausted, however the results are worth every minute.

“It’s a massive achievement.”

Ruby was due to attend her first team GB training camp at the end of June.

She has also been given a two-year contract with leading racket and clothing company Head.