Huxley makes a winning return to Grafton

BRITTANY Huxley returned to Grafton to win two titles at the North Coast Tennis Championships yesterday.

The 19-year-old has just ended her second season on the US College tennis circuit, returning to Grafton two weeks ago.

Huxley won the Women's Doubles crown with long time friend Taylah Beckman.

She followed that success with the Open Mixed Doubles title alongside her uncle, Gunnedah tennis coach Dale Martin.

The pair, who prevailed 7-6, 6-1 over Emily Osmond and Aaron Westerlund, will soon spend a lot more time together.

At the end of June Huxley will join Martin on a month-long tennis tour of France along with Grafton's Georgia Allen and two other girls under Martin's tutelage in Gunnedah.

BACK IN ACTION: Taylah Beckman and Brittany Huxley during their AMT Women’s Doubles triumph at the North Coast Championships held at Grafton City Tennis Club yesterday. Photo: Leigh Jensen
BACK IN ACTION: Taylah Beckman and Brittany Huxley during their AMT Women’s Doubles triumph at the North Coast Championships held at Grafton City Tennis Club yesterday. Photo: Leigh Jensen Leigh Jensen

The quartet will play several tournaments on clay and get a feel for the competition in Europe.

Huxley will have a change of scenery when she returns to the US in August. For her third NCAA Division One campaign she is transferring from Arkansas to Middle Tennessee State.

"My tennis wasn't going great and it didn't quite work out," Huxley said.

"I visited five different schools and decided on Middle Tennessee, who had younger, Australian coaches."

Happy to close that chapter, Huxley was thrilled to be back training and playing alongside Beckman in the women's doubles. In an all-Grafton affair, they accounted for Ashleigh Elward and Amanda Jones 6-2, 6-1 in the final.

"I've known Tay forever and when I'm home I practice with her every day," Huxley said.

"I love playing with Tay. We know each other's game which helps.

"Training with her is a much more relaxed atmosphere than college so it helps to have a break from that."

The pair had earlier dismissed third seeds Lily Clements-Markham and Ella Husrefovic 6-0, 6-0 in the semi-finals.

But the AMT Women's Singles results highlighted how doubles form can cannot always translate directly to singles.

Queensland's Husrefovic defeated Beckman 6-3, 7-5 in the semi-final before maintaining a steady tempo to take the $900 top prize in the final from Huxley, 6-0, 6-2.

"That happens with tennis," Huxley said.

"It's such an up and down sport. She was very strong and played well."

Top seed Thomas Fancutt won 6-0, 6-0 against Col Ingram in an all-Queensland decider of the AMT Men's Singles.