Wimbledon 2019 - Leeds’ Naiktha Bains beaten but unbowed

DESPITE tasting first-round defeat at Wimbledon Yorkshire’s Naiktha Bains is having the time of her life back among the Great Britain fold.

Rising star: Leeds-born Naiktha Bains playing in the womens doubles at Wimbledon yesterday. (Picture: Adam Davy/PA)

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Bains and her family moved from Leeds, where she was born, to Brisbane when she was eight, and having represented Australia for nearly a decade she came back into the British system this year, aged 21.

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Wildcards to Surbiton and Nottingham were forthcoming, likewise then for Wimbledon where Bains and women’s doubles partner Naomi Broady went down fighting against the Czech Republic’s Barbora Krejcikova and Katerina Siniakova.

Naomi Broady (right) and Naiktha Bains (left) in action during the women's doubles on day three of the Wimbledon Championships (Picture: Adam Davy/PA Wire)

The experienced Czech pairing were huge favourites as second seeds but needed 50 minutes to get past the battling Brits in the first set, eventually winning 7-5 6-1.

“It was a lot of fun and I really enjoyed it,” said Bains. “It was a tough draw because they’re two great doubles players, one of the best teams in the world, but I was happy with the way we played.

“It was a bit closer than the second set scoreline, it felt closer – the first set was obviously quite close at 5-3 at one stage.

“I haven’t been here to Wimbledon since juniors and I’ve been looking forward to it so much – hopefully it’ll continue for many years to come.”

Despite defeat the match will provide valuable experience for Bains, who has won two singles and 12 doubles titles on the ITF women’s circuit and is now the British No 6 in singles.

The rising Yorkshire star, who lost in the third round of qualifying at the Australian Open before heading to Europe, said: “I’m loving being back over here and I’m staying in Europe a bit longer, playing a few more WTA events. After that I’m heading to America for the US Open circuit. Hopefully I’ll get the chance to play Fed Cup for GB pretty soon.”

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