How tennis starlet Molly is following in footsteps of Durie, Henman and Barker

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TENNIS ace Molly Worden is following in some famous footsteps after winning the Torbay Open.

The 15-year-old capped an excellent summer by winning the girls’ under-16 singles at the famous Devon event.

As one of the biggest tournaments in the junior tennis calendar, it attracts players from throughout the country.

It has been established for 113 years and former winners of junior events at Torbay include Tim Henman, Sue Barker and Jo Durie.

Chichester Racquets and Fitness Club member Molly said: “I’m really pleased to have won. To have my name on the same trophy as Jo Durie, who competed in all the Grand Slams and made it to number five in the world, is very exciting.”

Although she didn’t know it at the time, Worden broke her wrist during a fall in the very first game of the semi. She picked herself up and beat Olivia Jones 6-4, 6-3. In the final she met Meryl Bird and won 6-3, 6-2.

Her ranking points from Torbay, combined with other events this season, have pushed Worden up to number ten in the national rankings.

“I’ve been working hard to improve my ranking and to break into the top ten is brilliant,” Worden said.

“I’ve one more year left to compete in under-16 tournaments so I’ll see how far I can get nationally in that age group before concentrating on under-18s and women’s events.”

Other success included a runner-up spot at a grade-two event at Sutton, where she beat the No2 and No5 seeds on the way to the final before losing to No1 Emily Dunne.

She followed up with a last-16 spot at a grade two event in Nottingham before winning an under-16 grade three event at Wimbledon.

At the Scottish Open in Edinburgh, she was knocked out in the first round by eventual winner Anna Brogan. At the Sussex Open at Worthing, she reached the semi-final.

Worden is having to take a few weeks off for her wrist injury but aims to start training again next month.