AN up-and-coming young tennis player from Leominster has been highlighted as one of the brightest talents in the country after being included on the Lawn Tennis Association’s Aegon FutureStars programme.

Twelve-year-old Alicia Williams, who trains at Hereford Whitecross Club has earned her place on the programme following a successful year on court and will now receive added support from the LTA.

The Aegon FutureStars programme recognises and supports some of the best juniors in the country based on the individual player’s talent ID assessment for players aged 13 and under, and rankings for all other age groups.

Williams has been included as part of the 2013 intake of players and will be part of a group of 486 top juniors from around the country who all receive varying levels of funding and support from the LTA.

Leon Smith, LTA Head of Men’s and Women’s Tennis, said: “We are committed to identifying and supporting our most talented players, and the Aegon FutureStars programme is central to this process for young players who are starting out in the game.

“It’s a long journey for any player hoping to make an impact on the game but we hope that with the right support, these players are given the best possible chance of reaching their full potential.”

British number two Heather Watson added: “The Aegon FutureStars programme identifies the most talented young players in the country and so it’s great that Alicia has been chosen to join the squad.

“I hope Alicia uses this support to help her achieve her dream of playing at the highest level.”