From Bradford, England, Francesca Jones was born with a rare genetic condition which left her with only three fingers and a thumb on each hand. However, this has not stopped her from following her dream in becoming a professional tennis player. For the record, amazingly she also only has three toes on her right foot and four on her left! Nevertheless, Francesca has always maintained that the disorder will not hold her back insisting; “I’ve said previously I try and use it as a positive and I see it as an advantage in many ways”.
The British No 5 made it through to the main draw of the Australian Open with a ruthless 6-0 6-1 demolition of Lu Jia-jing from China in the final qualifying round in Dubai. The 20-year-old had struggled in the build up to the match with cuts to her hands due to exposure to the cold weather in the UK. She later admitted to having a “wee mental breakdown” but was able to overcome this to book her place in her first ever Grand Slam event.
There are already whispers within the tennis community to grant Francesca a wild card for Wimbledon 2021! Whatever happens we will wish her the best of luck as she heads to Melbourne and it would be great to see her on the green grass of SW19 in the summer!