A WHITCHURCH tennis star who played well above her age grade to be the youngest for Shropshire girls Under-18s has been praised for her efforts.

Maddie Crabb, who plays at the Hollies Tennis Club in Chester Road, represented the county at just 12 years old, playing singles and doubles against players far older than her.

Dad Tony Crabb said he and mum Sarah ‘could not be more proud’ of their daughter for representing the county but for also showing dedication in her training again.


Tony said: “I am so proud of Maddie’s tennis performance in February and March and how she has matured over that time.

“Since the start of 2024 she has worked hard in practice, got back into playing matches and started to build some real momentum.

“This started off at Tipton in February half-term with a couple of great results/performances against higher-ranked girls.

“It continued when Maddie took her tennis kit on holiday and practiced virtually every day while we were away in readiness for the U18s County Cup this weekend.

“At 12 years old Maddie is now the youngest girl ever to represent Shropshire U18s and while she found the first couple of matches challenging she learnt from each match, kept positive and kept trying with the support of her team.

“The weekend culminated in her best singles performance ever when she took on a tall opponent who was five years older and ranked more than 400 places higher than Maddie.

“She only narrowly lost after nearly more than two hours of battling in a three-set thriller (3-6, 6-3, 6-4).

“Maddie came off court having tried her hardest, having kept positive throughout and had her opponent seriously under pressure.

“She couldn’t believe Maddie was only 12 years old. The level of focus, determination, positivity and quality of tennis was exceptional given the gap in age and rankings.

“The very next day Maddie turned up to practice, worked extremely hard again and was singled out by the coaches for her performance at training.

“No resting on her laurels. We couldn’t be more proud of her and look forward to supporting her upward trend in tennis and life.”

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Coach Ollie Gwilt also praised Maddie.

He said: “Maddie had an excellent weekend battling hard in both singles and doubles matches – what an achievement from her.

“We wish her all the best the in the future.”