Eden Silva wants the Battle of the Brits to become an annual fixture on the British tennis calendar, writes Will Jennings.
The Stratford star is currently competing at the UK Pro Series Classic Week in Weybridge but had a blast at the National Tennis Centre last month, where she duelled it out with Andy Murray, Kyle Edmund and Cameron Norrie in the prestigious team event.
The British No.11 has picked up a win and a loss this week but reckons the Roehampton event - that preceded the UK Pro Series on the British tennis timetable - deserves a permanent place on the schedule.
“Hopefully they’re going to make it an annual thing - there are talks of it, and I think it’s just finding when there’s the right time in everyone’s schedule because everyone’s usually so busy,” the 24-year-old said.
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“Hopefully they’ll be able to do it again because it was a lot of fun - it was great to be able to watch Andy even if it was just doubles.
“Everyone was giving it their best in each match even though it was a fun thing, and was still able to have fun with it so it was a great event.
“I couldn’t have asked for better teammates and everyone was really supportive in getting behind each other - there was a lot of banter and I think that made the event.”
Silva is one of 24 leading players duelling it out in the widely-billed Premier League of tennis at Weybridge, competing against a glittering array of talent including Harriet Dart and Jodie Burrage in the women’s draw and James Ward and Liam Broady in the men’s.
The innovative format was devised by Andy Murray’s coach, Jamie Delgado, with players on Classic Week being split into two boxes of six ahead of finals weekend on August 15th and 16th.
Silva toppled Emily Arbuthnott 6-3 6-2 in her opening match on Monday but failed to emulate her characteristic fluency the following day as she lost on a tie-break against Freya Christie.
She gets the chance to bounce back on Wednesday and reckons that rapid turnaround is what makes the event so distinctive.
“There’s a match every single day, whether you win or lose, so there’s always a chance for you to think about what you did if you lost and build on it if you’ve won,” she added.
“I’m really happy that I’m able to get out there tomorrow - I won week three here to qualify, and have played pretty well.”
12 of the UK’s top women and men have qualified through the UK Pro Series for the UK Pro Classic - www.ukproseries.com. The final 3 days of competition will have national free to air coverage: Freeview Channel 64, Sky Channel 422, Virgin Media Channel 553, TalkTalkTV Channel 64, BT TV Channel 64 and on download app FreeSportsPlayer.tv