Victorious Vekic will not switch to Team GB

 

Britain's four-woman Fed Cup team currently features two players – Laura Robson and Johanna Konta – who switched their nationalities, but Donna Vekic, one of the game's outstanding prospects, says she has no plans to join them. The 16-year-old from Croatia, who won her first match at a Grand Slam tournament here yesterday, has been based in London for the last five years and is coached by David Felgate, who was Tim Henman's coach in his early years as a professional.

"No, I'm very happy playing for Croatia," Vekic said when asked whether she would consider representing Britain. "Us Croatians have big Croatian hearts so we go out there fighting on the court, fighting for our country."

Vekic, who speaks near-perfect English, beat the Czech Republic's Andrea Hlavackova, who at No 66 in the world is ranked 45 places higher than her. The 6-1, 6-2 victory takes Vekic into a second-round meeting with Caroline Wozniacki, the world No 10.

"I was quite nervous at the beginning but, as the match went on, I started playing my tennis," Vekic said. "I didn't expect it to be that easy."

Vekic, who reached her first tour final in Tashkent last year, attends school in Croatia but spends most of her time away from tournaments in London, working with Felgate at the Northwood academy. "We've been together for about five years and we clicked from the start," Vekic said. "I listen to everything he has to say – and he's always right."

Meanwhile 42-year-old Kimiko Date-Krumm became the oldest player ever to win a women's singles match here. The Japanese produced the biggest surprise of the tournament so far when she beat Nadia Petrova, the No 12 seed, 6-2, 6-0. Date-Krumm, who first played here 23 years ago, retired in 1997 – when Vekic was one year old – but resumed her career 12 years later.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

Magnetic north

The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness
Homeless Veterans appeal: Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story

Homeless Veterans appeal

Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story
Front National family feud? Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks

Front National family feud?

Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks
Pot of gold: tasting the world’s most expensive tea

Pot of gold

Tasting the world’s most expensive tea
10 best wildlife-watching experiences: From hen harriers to porpoises

From hen harriers to porpoises: 10 best wildlife-watching experiences

While many of Britain's birds have flown south for the winter, it's still a great time to get outside for a spot of twitching
Nick Easter: 'I don’t want just to hold tackle bags, I want to be out there'

'I don’t want just to hold tackle bags, I want to be out there'

Nick Easter targeting World Cup place after England recall
DSK, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel

The inside track on France's trial of the year

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel:
As provocative now as they ever were

Sarah Kane season

Why her plays are as provocative now as when they were written
Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of a killing in Iraq 11 years ago

Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of another killing

Japanese mood was against what was seen as irresponsible trips to a vicious war zone
Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore