Who is Annabel Croft? Wimbledon presenter and former British tennis number one

11 months ago 95

ANNABEL CROFT is best known for her successful tennis career.

She’s gone on to have an impressive broadcast career as well, but who is she?

Annabel Croft features regularly on TV coverage of WimbledonTimes Newspapers Ltd

Who is Annabel Croft?

Annabel Croft is a former British No. 1 female tennis player and current radio and television presenter.

She was born in Farnborough, Hampshire, in 1966.

Becoming professional in 1984, she was ranked number 24 in the world before her shock retirement in 1986 aged just 21.

She is also active in raising awareness of child obesity, and is a supporter of the children’s cancer charity CLIC Sargent.

What is Annabel Croft known for?

Croft won both the Wimbledon and Australian Open girls’ tournaments in 1984.

A year later she won her only singles title – the Virginia Slims of San Diego tournament – beating Wendy Turnbull 6-0, 7-6.

She also starred for Great Britain in the Fed Cup in 1985 and 1986 and in the Wightman Cup from 1983 to 1986.

The furthest Croft reached in any of the four grand slams she participated in was the third round at Wimbledon in 1984 and the US Open in 1986.

Despite being among the world’s top 25 players, Croft retired from tennis at the age of 21.

In 2011 she claimed the reason for her retirement was the “stressful nature of the tour, which was described as being like “having an argument every day and preparing for another one tomorrow”.

In 1990 Croft released her own fitness video called Annabel Croft’s Shape Tape.

She has been involved in coverage of Wimbledon for the BBC, Radio 5 Live and GMTV, and has also worked for Sky Sports and Eurosport as a pundit.

Additionally, she has started up her own tennis academy in three countries.

In June 2009 Annabel Croft took part in a BBC series of two programmes called Famous, Rich and Homeless, about living penniless on the streets of London.

And she took part in the Great British Menu 2017 as a guest judge.

What has happened to Annabel Croft’s husband?

Annabel’s husband Mel Coleman passed away in May 2023.

He died just eight weeks after complaining of stomach pain and being diagnosed with stage three cancer.

He was just 60-years-old when he passed away.
Releasing a statement at the time of his death, Annabel said: “My beloved husband Mel passed away peacefully on Wednesday morning after a short battle with cancer.

“My family and I are completely heartbroken and ask for privacy at this very sad time.”

The pair have three grown-up children, Charlie, Amber and Lily.

When is Annabel Croft appearing on Strictly?

Annabel is set to swap her tennis racket for her dancing shoes as she joins the Strictly Come Dancing 2023 cast.

She is due to join the cast alongside the likes of Bobby Brazier and Zara McDermott.

The news was announced on Virgin Radio Breakfast Show with Ricky Wilson when Annabel said: “I am beyond excited. I’ve always loved this magical, magical show.”

She added: “I’m also a bit terrified at the same time!”

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