Home / Sports / Anna Hursey: 11-year-old Welsh athlete takes Commonwealth Games by storm

Anna Hursey: 11-year-old Welsh athlete takes Commonwealth Games by storm

Playing in the park? Sneaking into movies that you were too young to watch? Or perhaps zoning out in front of cartoons on the TV?

Whatever it was it’s unlikely you were competing in a major international sporting event. So kudos to Welsh table tennis player Anna Hursey who at the age of 11 has been taking the Commonwealth Games, which is being held on Australia’s Gold Coast, by storm.

The youngest athlete at the Games hasn’t been in Australia just there for the ride either, she has showed serious talent.

Hursey helped her nation qualify for the quarterfinals after defeating India on Thursday in the doubles with partner Charlotte Carey — a veritable veteran at the grand old age of 21 — before doing the same again against Sri Lanka on Friday, this time partnering with Chloe Thomas.

What was impressive about Hursey’s performance against Sri Lanka was that it followed defeat in her singles match when she lost in a tie-break.

The 11-year-old was beaten 3-2 by Sri Lanka’s Manikku Badu — 16 years Hursey’s senior — after battling back from being 2-0 down.

After Hursey and Carey combined to beat India, Team Wales table tennis coach Stephen Jenkins said: “Anna was amazing. She was relaxed and focused on what she needed to do and happy to be out in front of the crowd.”

However, in the quarterfinal of the doubles experience told as Australia’s team of Miao Miao and Jian Fang Lay defeated Hursey and Thomas 11-8 11-2 11-2.

A fan of Pretty Little Liars and Ariana Grande, Hursey started playing table tennis at the age of five on holiday in Harbin, China, where according to her website she received one-to-one coaching and began developing her technique.

She has regularly returned to China where her weekly training regime involves 30 hours a week.

By the age of six Hursey was the Welsh Under-11 champion and ever since she has steadily accumulated other notable landmarks.

Ranked No.1 in Britain’s Under-18 age group, Hursey is also the European No. 1 for her age, while she’s in the top 20 for the world Under-15 rankings.

Hursey’s teachers back in Wales can also rest easy — the table tennis prodigy has also been keeping across her school work while she’s been in Australia.

Meanwhile, there were 17 golds on offer on day two of the Games. Here’s the highlights:

Australia dominate in the pool

Emma McKeon (right, gold), Australia's Madeline Groves (silver) and Australia 's Brianna Throssell (bronze) celebrate after swimming the women's 100m butterfly final.

Host nation Australia dominated the pool claiming 15 medals, six of which were gold. They even managed a podium sweep in the women’s 100m butterfly final.

It was Australia’s most successful day in Commonwealth Games’ history as they claimed nine gold medals overall. Not a bad day at the office!

Sibling joy

Scottish siblings Katie and John Archibald take a celebratory selfie with their gold and silver medals.

The Archibald family had a day to remember in the Anna Meares Velodrome as Katie won gold for Scotland in the women’s 3000m Individual Pursuit, before her brother John claimed silver in the men’s 4000m race.

Greatest Commonwealth Games male swimmer

South Africa 's Chad Le Clos poses with his gold medal after the swimming men's 50m butterfly final.

South African swimmer, Chad le Clos, took gold in the 50m butterfly, his 13th Commonwealth medal, which makes him the most successful male swimmer in the Games’ history.

The Commonwealth Games runs until April 15.

News credit : Cnn