11-Year-Old Set To Be Youngest Athlete In CWG History
Eleven-year-old Anna Hursey is yearning to set foot at the Commonwealth Games’ podium and prove her mettle. The table tennis player is arguably the youngest athlete to represent Wales at the Commonwealth Games.
Hursey was selected in Wales’ squad for the trip to Australia’s Gold Coast. The games begin on April 4.
“I am going — and that’s really good — but hopefully I can show some people that I’m good at this sport and not just going there to have fun,” Hursey told BBC Sport Wales.
Hursey is the youngest person to represent any sport at a senior level. She had played in Wales’ table tennis team last year at the age of 10 in a European Championship
History will definitely be made this week when this youngster competes against some of the world’s best players.
“She’s taking it in her stride really,” Welsh coach Stephen Jenkins told AFP.
“She is actually really mature for her age. It’s just inside her – she’s mentally strong.”
Hursey’s love for table tennis was born when she was five years old. She will become the youngest athlete to represent Wales at the Commonwealth Games. The player has already broken records by becoming the youngest athlete ever to compete at the quadrennial event.
“I feel proud of myself but I don’t feel that nervous — when I am there I probably will be. I think I have a really good mindset, you can’t give up when you are losing or you won’t get better.”
Welsh number one Charlotte Carey is guiding Hursey as a teammate to how to avoid publicity.
“They don’t want to baby her,” insisted Jenkins. “It’s more that she’s a teammate, and that’s important for Anna as well – she doesn’t want to be the baby. But the girls have been fantastic. Charlotte was in a similar position to Anna once and knows exactly what she’s going through.”
“But she’s not expected to win a medal, so it sort of takes the pressure off. I know what she can do when she plays her best – the future’s looking good for her,” Jenkins added. Hursey reportedly trains four to six hours a day.
The young girl’s determination has landed her at the biggest podium. She is now eyeing a place in Wales’ 2020 Tokyo Olympics team.
Kudos to Anna Hursey!
Picture Credit: ITTF Education