Wimbledon 2022: Wildcard Kartal out to make big impression

Wimbledon wildcard Sonay Kartal is ecstatic that she has the chance to continue her strong season in style.

Kartal benefits from the LTA’s NTC Pro Access programme, which is for players ranked 100-200 in singles and 31-100 in doubles, providing cost-free access to courts on all three surfaces, coaching, trainers and the LTA’s tournament bonus scheme.

The Brighton ace has been chosen as one of eight women’s main draw wildcards and is grateful her rapidly improving world ranking has helped her get there.

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Sonay Kartal benefits from the LTA’s NTC Pro Access programme

"At the start of the year, I was high 400s or 500 something, so I was not getting into major tournaments. Being able to have a wildcard, that helps massively because previously I played two weeks and jumped 200 spots,” she said.

"I can speak for a lot of players. We have all been at that awkward ranking where it's like 500 and something so you're high up in the W15s but you're not quite making W25 main draws.

"It was really tough and they were given wildcards, and I just think there are so many players that have a similar story to mine and we've just shot up the rankings.

"So if you look at that you can see that [wildcards] are definitely worth it.

"I just think for British tennis, it's something that we all really needed."

Kartal received a wildcard place alongside seven-time champion Serena Williams after a strong start to the season saw her shoot up inside the top 300 of the WTA rankings.

The 20-year-old won her first W25 at LTA events in Edgbaston in February before consecutive wins in Glasgow and Nottingham, claiming her fifth ITF career title.

Having not played on grass for three years before this summer, the young tennis player is slowly getting to grips with the surface again and will be ready to showcase her newfound rankings in SW19 at the end of June.

Kartal commented: "I remember at the start of the year, someone asked me what my goal for the season was and I said my goal was to be top 500 and then I think two weeks after that I did it and I thought: 'Oh God.'

"And then the next goal was 300 and I've done that now.

"I always believed that I wasn't far off - it was just whether I could prove whether I was far off. My belief has always been there."

Please leave in final par - For the latest action on the British summer grass court season, check out the LTA website