Sunday, February 21, 2016

Juki's Junior Week in Review, Feb. 15-21, 2016

I invited Graham Jung (aka @juki_tennis) to contribute to On the Rise (a tennis blog). Juki is a great follow on Twitter, with a particular interest in junior and ITF Pro Circuit events, and Asian and lower-ranked American players. Please enjoy his first deep dive for OtR (atb) into the week that was in junior tennis!

Emily Appleton & Guiherme Wojciechowski Osorio
Photo Credit: Federacion de Tenis de Chile
The highest grade ITF Junior Circuit held this week was the G2 Copa FTCh in Santiago, Chile. The Chilean stop is week 6 of 10 of the South American clay court junior tour which will close next month with the GA Copa Gerdau in Porto Alegra, Brazil. Without any top juniors in attendance both the boys & girls draws were open and saw top seeds fall in early rounds while players ranked outside the Top 250 prevailed to claim the titles. In the boys draw the victor was 17 year-old Brazilian Guilherme Wojciechowski Osorio, ranked #272, grabbing the biggest title of his junior career. As an unseeded player in the 48-player draw Osorio needed to win six matches, defeating three seeds along his way to the trophy. Osorio's toughest match came against the youngest player he faced, as 14 year-old standout Thiago Agustin Tirante of Argentina pushed Osorio to a third set tiebreak in the third round. Tirante, the Junior Orange Bowl U14 Champion, is already proving to be a tough competitor against his older opponents at the ITF level. In the final Osorio, who trains in Portugal at the Felner Tennis Academy, defeated unseeded 16 year-old Federico Iannaccone of Italy 6-3 7-5. Iannaccone has shown good promise so far in 2016 having won a Serbian ITF junior title in January.

Brit Emily Appleton won the girls’ title, making the trek to Chile after competing in two indoor ITF Pro Circuit events in Great Britain in weeks prior. The 16 year-old Appleton (@ejappleton14) reached the second round of both $10K Glasgow and $10K Sunderland, and showed her good form could cope with the change to vastly different playing conditions. Appleton only dropped one set on route to her title this week, in her quarterfinal match against top seed Dominique Schaefer of Peru. Schaefer, who represented the United States until last year, has been one of the ITF Junior Circuit standouts of 2016 seeing her ranking climb to top-50 in the world. Appleton faced a surprise finalist as 14 year-old Viktoria Morvayova of Slovakia came through a number of tough opponents including second seed Raquel Pedraza of USA to post the biggest result of her young career. Appleton faced a tough test from the young Slovak but prevailed 7-6(5) 7-5. It was a tough tournament for the Americans, but success was found in doubles as the All-American team of Ezekiel Clark/Gui Gomes won the boys while Raquel Pedraza teamed up with Argentine Melany Solange Krywoj to win the girls.

To wrap up the tournament, which also featured U14 and U16 tournaments being contested, the Chilean Federation put together a small youtube package as seen below. Detailed results across all age categories can be found at

Tennis Europe Winter Cups Final Rounds

This weekend also saw the Final Rounds played for the Tennis Europe Winter Cups, a Davis Cup/Fed Cup style competition amongst the European nations. The 8 nations qualifying for the finals face off in a knockout format over three days, with each tie featuring two singles matches followed by a doubles match. The Winter Cups provide a great opportunity for young talented players to gain the experience of representing their nation and being part of a team format while providing matches against other top European players of their age group.

Russian Winning G16 team of Olesya Pervushina, Anastasia
Potapova and Varvara Gracheva. Photo Credit: Tennis Europe
The U16 category this year was dominated by Russia, with their boys & girls’ teams both taking away the Winter Cup trophy. The Russia boys team of Alexey Zakharov, Egor Noskin and Timofey Skatov defeated the Netherlands in today’s final 3-0 which was held in Ronchin, France. The Russian team didn’t have it all their own way this week as the semifinal against Bulgaria was decided in doubles which Zakharov/Noskin were able to come through 6-1 7-6(4). Playing first singles for the Russian team, Skatov didn’t drop a set all week leading his team to victory. Only turning 15 last month, Skatov has yet to make his mark on the ITF junior tour but has impressed with performances at the U14 level including a Runner-Up finish at Les Petits As last year.

The Russian U16 girls team surprisingly faced a more difficult route to the title, despite the presence of top junior and potential future stars Anastasia Potapova and Olesya Pervushina. Both the semifinal tie against Switzerland and today’s final against Czech Republic were decided in doubles as each dropped a singles match. It was Potapova who struggled in the semifinal, only winning two games against Simona Waltert, but Pervushina dropped her match today against the tough Lucia Kankova in a third set tiebreak 6-7(4) 6-2 6-7(3). The duo teamed up in doubles in both ties to secure another Winter Cup trophy for Russia.

The U14 titles were won by Italy & Ukraine, in the boys & girls respectively. The Italian team consisted of Lorenzo Musetti, Lorenzo Rottoli and Fausto Tabacco, defeating Czech Republic 3-0 in the final. Rottoli and Musetti recently won the doubles title together at Les Petits As, and continued their good form here. The B14 included livestreaming, with the match archived and viewable at Marta Kostyuk led the Ukrainian team to the girls' title, but the dominant force in U14 tennis dropped her match today against Slovakia’s Romana Ciskova. It required a team effort from Ukraine as Daria Snigur won her singles match and Kostyuk teamed with 12 year-old Daria Lopatetskaya in doubles to bring home the trophy to Ukraine.

Open Super U12 Auray

One of the few notable U12 tournaments was held this week in Auray, France for the tournament's 25th edition. Past winners of the tournament include a number of top tennis stars including Rafael Nadal (’98), Andy Murray (’99), Kim Clijsters (’95), Dinara Safina (’98), Alize Cornet (’02), with recent champions including promising stars Felix Auger-Aliassime, Francoise Abanda and Anastasia Potapova. Although some very impressive names have won the tournament in the past it is important not to read too much into U12 results, as many past champions haven't made the transition to the professional level. The 2016 champions were Cesar Bouchelaghem of France and Kristina Volgapkina of Russia, both winning their finals in straight sets. Like Tarbes, Auray provided livestreaming for the tournament via youtube, and the finals plus many more matches can be seen on their account:

No comments:

Post a Comment