Injury may halt Przemek Stec's proud Ulster record
A wrist injury is threatening to hamper Przemek Stec's chances of extending his remarkable run in the Keys Finance Ulster Open tennis championship, which gets under way on Monday, June 20 at the Belfast Boat Club.
The Polish-born Windsor ace, who has won the men's singles trophy five times in the last six years, has been unable to practice or play in recent weeks due to the injury which flares up from time to time.
However, he hopes to assess the damage over the weekend and next week and has entered the inaugural Co Down Championship at Hillsborough.
He said: "It's quite sore and I have been taking pain killers but I aim to take part in the Superset competition at Windsor on Saturday and then play in Hillsborough and after that I will have a better idea of where I stand."
Stec has a tremendous record at the Ulster Open, having never lost a singles match on the five occasions he has participated.
There are no such injury concerns for ladies singles title holder Lucy Octave, who will be hoping to make it three in a row.
Speaking at the tournament launch, the 18-year-old Donaghadee player said: "It would be a great achievement to win again and I played some good tennis in last year's final.
"I beat Annie McCullough in the final last year and then her twin sister Caitlin defeated me in the Ulster junior final so I expect them to be the main challengers."
This year's event will have an increased prize fund, with £500 for the men's singles winner and £200 for the ladies champion.
There are graded events for those who prefer not to compete at the top level and entry is open until Wednesday, June 15.