TENNIS star Tim Henman was on hand to open a new indoor court in Malvern.

The four-time Wimbledon semi-finalist, 36, unveiled the £400,000 facility at the Manor Park club before hitting the first ball in a demonstration with club youngsters.

Henman, the former British number one, was full of admiration for the project and praised the facilities offered to young players in a part of the country he holds close to his heart.

He said: “I have a connection with the area as my dad and brothers went to Malvern College so I came here around 25 years ago.

“It’s great to see this type of facility exists here now and that it’s expanding because we know our climate is not always conducive to tennis through the winter months and the more kids that have that opportunity, the better.

“Facilities like this played a huge part in my development and it’s really important kids get the same opportunity.”

The Lawn Tennis Association contributed £204,000 to the improvements with support also coming from Sport England.

Derek Howorth, president of the LTA, said: “They’ve got a great programme, not only three indoor courts but a huge number of outdoor courts, a team of coaches and a good performance squad.

“They are doing a great job in the quest to produce more performance players.”