tennis CHRIS MAUME

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The Independent Culture
If Confucius had played tennis, he might have opined that a building is only as strong as its foundations. The Satellite circuit is one of the first tests for young players seeking world ranking, and all but the obvious prodigies started out at events like these.

There's a chance to see a bevy of young Britons ending decades of national underachievement at the Lawn Tennis Association's Men's Indoor Satellite Circuit International Masters event at the Royal Country Berkshire Racquets and Health Club in Bracknell, starting on Tuesday and going on until next weekend.

The tournament, played on carpet, is the culmination of a four-leg circuit and will highlight some of the best domestic talent of the likes of Ross Matheson, Paul Hand and Andrew Richardson (depending on who does well in the third leg at Eastbourne this week). Play starts in the morning, and it costs nothing to get in. Though the edges may be rougher than on the green fields of SW19, you'll still see plenty of exciting tennis with the same undeniable thrill of being privy to wild hopes and dreams.

LTA Men's Indoor Satellite Circuit Masters, 28 Feb-3 Mar. Royal Country Berkshire Racquets and Health Club, Bracknell (0344 860879)

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