Tennis chief rejects useless tag and vows to mine Murray factor

INCOMING Lawn Tennis Association chief executive Michael Downey has hit back at claims the organisation is “useless” and outlined his plan to capitalise on Andy Murray’s Wimbledon success.

Last year All-Party Tennis Group chair Baroness Billingham said the £640,000 salary earned by Downey’s predecessor Roger Draper was unjustified. But Canadian Downey, who will earn £300,000 plus 30 per cent in performance-related bonuses when he assumes his role on 6 January, believes he has an “immense” opportunity to increase nationwide participation and avoid a £10.3m cur to its funding from Sport England.

He said. “I believe there’s a bevy of young British talent that can follow Andy Murray to the podium.”