Talk of the Town: Conor's got his eye on the ball

GEORGE Heriot's pupil Conor Cooper, 14, had the chance of a lifetime when he received expert tennis tuition from Boris Becker at special trials in London to pick ball kids for the ATP World Tour Finals at the O2 Arena.

If selected for the event in November he'll take to the courts alongside big names such as Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray himself.

So at least if Murray puts in his usual guaranteed-to-frustrate performance, we can at least distract ourselves by watching out for the other local hero. For details about becoming a Barclays Ball Kid visit

Age-old claim has a ring of truth this time

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THIS Friday sees the charity dance event Extravadanza take over Edinburgh's Corn Exchange.

And while it might be a common boast by other events, this fundraiser truly can claim to represent people of all ages.

The event will feature Zumba classes by 74-year-old fitness enthusiast Helen Flannigan.

And now it has been revealed it will also feature Scotland's youngest breakdancer - two-year-old Romeo Demarco.

He might still be in nappies and hasn't quite mastered walking, but none of that will stop him busting a move to help Marie Curie.

Students mark city down

IT might come as a shock to students in the Capital, but it seems Edinburgh might not be the best place in the UK to study.

A survey by an online student accommodation website has revealed that Newcastle is considered the best place to study, with the Capital joining Glasgow, Manchester, Liverpool and Aberdeen in second place. Students rated location, shops, and facilities on the survey, as well as going out. Those puzzled at how Edinburgh could lose out on the top spot might consider that one of the criteria used was "transport links (buses, trams, train, underground)".

Independent thinking

THE Rev Ian Galloway, convener of the Church of Scotland's church and society council, had no hesitation in agreeing to a request at the General Assembly yesterday to prepare a report on independence and its implications for the Kirk.

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The timing was not so simple, however. The request had suggested next year. Mr Galloway said the council had a heavy workload and suggested 2013. But, knowing we live in fast-moving political times, he added: "If things accelerate hugely we could come back next year."