South Croydon tennis player Isaac Stoute suing Lawn Tennis Association over 'racial discrimination'
A top teenage tennis player is suing the sport's British governing body over alleged racial discrimination that has "destroyed his career".
Isaac Stoute, of South Croydon, claims the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) has damaged his career by unfairly prioritising lower-ranked "Caucasian" players for funding, training and tournaments.
The 18-year-old, currently 82nd in the LTA's British men's rankings and the top-rated under-18 player in Kent, alleges the body starved his achievements of publicity while championing the lesser competitive successes of white players, limiting his sponsorship opportunities.
He has as a black father, Michael, and a white mother, Maxine.
Michael Stoute, 51, of Netherheys Drive, said: "Isaac's career has been destroyed. He has not been looked at with a person who has a real, brilliant career ahead of him who they should be trying to do everything they can to save.
"He has been treated as nothing. It is very difficult for him."
In papers submitted to the Court of Appeal, Mr Stoute for the reinstatement of funding for his son, a declaration of unlawful discrimination on racial grounds, damages for injury to feelings and loss of sponsorship opportunities.
The papers also call for £60,000 in back-dated funding it is alleged Stoute should have received since 2008.
The LTA denies the allegations.
A spokesman for the LTA said: "We strongly refute these allegations made by Michael Stoute against the LTA.
"We take all matters regarding equality and diversity extremely seriously, and we are committed to providing transparent selection policies with regards to player funding and selections."
A judge at Central London County Court last year halted the legal action on the grounds documents had not been validly served on the LTA in 2012.
But last week Mr Stoute challenged that ruling and asked the court to resurrect the claim. He said the papers had been mistakenly served by the court.
Mr Stoute added: "If we don't pursue this then the LTA are open to doing this again to anybody else. They are doing it at the moment anyway, it is just not highlighted."
Judges are expected to return a decision on the appeal in the next few weeks.
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