TEN year-old William Cross has proven to be a chip off the old block by following in the footsteps of his tennis pro dad.
In the week Wales celebrated football World Cup qualification and a 13th world boxing champion, the Tavernspite schoolboy enjoyed his own national success.
He won his age category in the South Wales County Championships held at Dinas Powys Tennis Club, beating Daniel Obaid from Bridgend in the final, having only dropped one game in the entire round-robin format.
The following day William was back on court at David Lloyd Cardiff for another tournament, and once again met Daniel in what proved to be a much tighter final, before triumphing in the tie-break.
The week was rounded off when William was part of the Tavernspite Year 5 team which won the Pembrokeshire schools tennis championship.
William’s talent should come as no surprise with dad Jeremy an ex-professional on the British tour and Jersey’s most decorated tennis player.
He practices at Haverfordwest Tennis Club as often as he can with his dad, along with club coaches Tom Hole and Nathan Jones.
Reflecting on his county championship victory, William said: “I feel quite proud because it was my first big tournament and I think it will be a good marker in my tennis career.
“I hope to be as good as my dad one day.
“The thing I love about tennis is that it combines all of my different sporting abilities, and lots of running around.
“I just like hitting a ball, I do hockey and badminton as well.”
Jeremy, who is the current Welsh Senior Open champion, said he was incredibly proud of William’s achievements.
“It’s just lovely to see him enjoy himself and playing a sport that I enjoy, that’s part of the pride I think.
“I see a load of myself in him. Is it the hair? Is it the forehand? It’s probably just the inability to sit still!”
William will be hoping to bring home more silverware when he competes in the men’s doubles with his dad at this year’s Pembrokeshire County Tennis Tournament, which takes place at the Parade from 4-16 July.