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Junior Tennis Review - 16/02

Paula Badosa Gibert won the Mediterranee
Avenir Grade 1 event in Morocco
Mediterranee Avenir (Morocco) – Grade 1

A huge shock in this Grade 1 event as unseeded Spaniard, Paula Badosa Gibert, came through qualifying to go all the way to the title without dropping a set. Seven straight sets victories will catapult her from 535 in the junior rankings to the verge of the top 150. She beat three of the top 8 seeds in the tournament, capping it with a win over the very talented Sandra Samir in the final. Top seed, Ioana Ducu, was beaten in the third round by Canada’s Marie-Alexandre Leduc. The doubles ended in a walkover in the final as the team of Anna Bondar and Ioana Ducu pulled out, gifting the title to Viktoria Kuzmova and Kristina Schmiedlova.

Condor de Plata (Bolivia) – Grade 2

Raquel Pedraza made up for last week's disappointment as she lifted her first junior title. The 16-year old American beat her compatriot, Gabrielle Faith Andrews, in straight sets in the final to cap off a successful week, where she dropped just the single set. There was home joy in the doubles, as Bolivia's Daniela Ruiz teamed up with Paraguayan Gabriela Ferrerira Sanabria to defeat second seeds, Nicole Frenkel and Ellyse Hamlin in a third set tiebreak.

Trofeul D.Sturdza (Moldova) – Grade 2

In a tournament dominated by the Russians, it was 15-year old Daria Kruzhkova who lifted her first Grade 2 title and fourth junior title overall. The second seed did not drop a set throughout the tournament, beating unseeded compatriot Ksenia Stashenkova in the final. Stashenkova had progressed against the top seed, Anna Blinkova, in the semi-final when Blinkova retired after the first set. The injury that forced Blinkova out of the singles also caused her and Kruzkhova to forfeit the doubles final with the Romanian pair of Ioana Diana Pietroiu and Andrada Ioana Surdeanu benefiting.

NZ ITF Summer Championships 2014 (New Zealand) – Grade 3

13-year old, Destanee Aiava, improved to 16-2 for the year and extended her winning run to 10 matches as she destroyed the field at the NZ Summer Championships. Not only did she not drop a set, nobody got closer than 6-3 as she handed out five 6-1 sets on route to the title. Second seed, Claire Yonnkee Choi Spackman, was dispatched for the loss of just two games, while top seed, Madison Inglis, won just three games as the youngster obliterated the competition. Spackman would lift a trophy though as she won the doubles event with her partner, Rosie Cheng, who were awarded the title after the Hule sisters withdrew ahead of the final.

Copenhagen Winter Cup (Denmark) – Grade 4

The tournament had its dream final as the top two seeds faced off. Eventually, it would be the British top seed, Katie Swan, who would overcome the local favourite, Julie Noe, in a final set tiebreak. Neither players had dropped a set on their path to the final, but it was a tough battle to determine the champion. Swan would complete the pair as she lifted the doubles title with her partner, Claudia Wiktorin, as they beat Wilhelmina Palmer and Ida Seljevoll Skancke 12-10 in the third set tiebreak.

Queretaro Junior Cup (Mexico) – Grade 4

Costa Rica’s Ariana Rahmanparast won her first ever junior title, but had to do it the hard way as she battled through three back-to-back three set matches before top seed, Jenna Friedel, retired at 6-4, 2-1 down in the final. Despite that, there can be few arguments that she deserved the title, beating three of the top four seeds in the tournament. Sofia Wicker was the best hope for the home fans, but eventually succumbed to Jenna Friedel in the semi-finals. Rahmanparast nearly capped off the perfect week as she reached the final of the doubles with her partner Arisha Ladhani, but they were pipped at the post by the American duo of Hada Chang and Sydney Arnea Riley.

ITF 4 Indoor Almere 2014 (Netherlands) – Grade 4

There was British success in the Netherlands as Anastasia Mikheeva beat the home favourite, Liza Lebedzeva, to lift her second Grade 4 title of her career. The 14-year old dropped just the single set during her run to the title, that being in the semi-final against the eighth seed, Isolde de Jong. Having defeated three of the top eight seeds, Mikheeva can be pleased with her week. Lebedzeva made up for the disappointment of losing the singles final as she lifted the doubles title with her partner, Vinciane Remy, as their opponents withdrew ahead of the final.

6th Kenya International Junior Championships (Kenya) – Grade 5

The tournament saw a pair of first-time finalists as seventh seed, Jessica Crivelletto, took on British eighth seed, Katarina Weymouth. It would be the Swiss player that emerged victorious to lift her first ever junior title after a three set battle. There was disappointment for local hopeful, Kenya’s Stephanie Mbaya, who crashed in the second round, despite being seeded fourth for the tournament. However, Crivelletto was unable to win a second title as she lost in the doubles final with her partner Anita Ance Detlava as the unseeded Austrian pair of Antonia Paleczek and Victoria Walter won 11-9 in the third set tiebreak.

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