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Judy Murray and the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) have revealed plans to encourage more young girls to get into tennis through a brand new program called ‘Miss-Hits.’

Specifically targeted at girls aged 5-8 years old, Miss-Hits is a unique and exciting way to attract more young girls into tennis, and focuses on having fun whilst also enabling girls to discover skills they never knew they had. It acts as a feeder programme into LTA Mini Tennis sponsored by Highland Spring.

With the help of six characters who champion the programme, Miss-Hits aims to lay the foundations for future female tennis stars and encourage young girls to lead healthy and energetic lives.

British Fed Cup Captain Judy Murray, who designed the program, said: “We’re really proud to have brought this program together to offer young girls something completely different. If girls are going to get involved in tennis and stay in tennis, we need them to have really positive first experiences of the sport and Miss-Hits does just that. It’s girly and friendly, and at the same time it’s cool and trendy. I think it will appeal to a lot of girls out there who love playing active games and learning new skills and I can’t wait to get started.”

Miss-Hits will be rolled out in autumn 2014, initially in London, Bristol, Newcastle-upon-Tyne and Edinburgh. The program will then expand to other cities in 2015.

LTA Head of Participation Rob Dearing added: “There are many more boys playing tennis than girls and we know we have to address this at a number of stages. The first is at entry level where we need to encourage more young girls to try the sport. To be successful at this stage tennis must complement the things they do in their everyday life. Miss-Hits is a great way to make the sport more attractive to young girls and will address the things we know put them off the sport too early, such as too much individual competition or there not being enough girls of their own age playing the sport. We are working closely with Judy to develop the right workforce to deliver Miss-Hits and are looking forward to engaging more young girls in tennis through this exciting new program.”