Hutton defends British Nationals title after Evans injury

Jasmine Hutton defended her British Nationals title after her final clash against Tesni Evans was unfortunately cut short due to an injury to the Welshwoman. 

No.2 seed Evans pulled up when chasing down a drop from Hutton at 4-3 in the fifth and despite treatment from the physio, Evans was unable to continue, handing the title to Hutton. 

Everyone involved at the British Nationals wishes Tesni a speedy recovery.

Hutton started the match where she left off from her semi-final victory against Georgina Kennedy, hitting a backhand volley straight into the nick with her first shot of the match. The game plan from the No.5 seed was evident, looking to take time away from Evans and use her volley-drop whenever possible.

A fast start from the defending champion saw her race into a 7-4 lead, but Evans manoeuvered herself into the encounter and managed to set up two game balls at 10-8 up.

Hutton (right) in action against Evans (left).
Hutton (right) in action against Evans (left).

However, after missing out on both opportunities, the pair entered a lengthy tie-break which was finished off in style by Hutton, who hit a brilliant inside-out forehand flick into the nick to win the first 13-11.

The beginning of the second saw Hutton continue to play the match on her terms, racing into a 6-2 lead. Evans, who won the Nationals in 2018 and 2019, refused to go down without a fight though, mixing up her pace and attempting to disrupt the rhythm of Hutton whenever possible.

Despite this improvement from the Welshwoman, which saw her win six of the next nine points, Hutton’s lead proved insurmountable and she held on to double her lead by a scoreline of 11-8.

The beginning of the third saw the pendulum swing in Evans’ favour for the first time in the match, with her opponent hitting a few scrappy errors and the No.2 seed mixing up her play nicely.

Evans showed brilliant athleticism to win a crucial rally at 7-7 with a counter-drop before following up with a nick-finding forehand drop to move 10-8 up. The Welshwoman subsequently took the third game at the first time of asking.

World No.13 Evans continued her brilliant work at the start of the fourth, working Hutton out of position and starting to implement her style of play on the game. After racing into an early 7-3 lead, Evans continued to pile on the pressure and levelled the match, taking the fourth 11-7.

With the fifth game delicately poised at 4-3 to Hutton, the match took an unfortunate turn as Evans pulled up when chasing down a drop from her opponent.

Despite receiving treatment from the physio, Evans was unable to continue and came back onto the court to huge applause to shake hands with Hutton and bring the match to a close.

Evans (left) and Hutton (right) embrace after the conclusion of the match.
Evans (left) and Hutton (right) embrace after the conclusion of the match.

After the match, Hutton said: “I’m really gutted for Tesni [Evans]. We were having an absolute battle out there and it’s a horrible way to finish and win an event.

“I wish her a speedy recovery. We have got a really busy season ahead so all the best to her and she is an absolute legend.

“I feel like I really took myself out of my comfort zone and flew over to Florida for a good four weeks. There was a lot of fitness early mornings, there was fitness every day no matter what and I feel really amazing.”


[5] Jasmine Hutton (ENG) bt [2] Tesni Evans (WAL) 3-2: 13-11, 11-8, 8-11, 7-11, 5-3 ret. (67m)