Fanny Stollar and Corentin Moutet continued their excellent progression through the junior ranks to claim the European 16 & Under Championship titles in Moscow.
Stollar had a particularly impressive week, claiming both singles and doubles gold medals for Hungary. Seeded second in the singles competition, she remained steady while her fellow seeds succumbed to a series of surprise early losses, advancing to the final without conceding a set in any of her matches.
By contrast, her final opponent, home hope Anna Blinkova had fought hard to survive several brushes with disaster, notably outlasting Nikolina Jovic (SRB) in a final set tie break in the quarterfinals and recovering from the brink of defeat to end the hopes of unseeded Hana Mraz (SLO) in the semis, 4-6 7-6(6) 6-2.
The final turned out to be a one-sided affair. Once Stollar scored a decisive break to claim the first set she never looked back, with the Russian unable to win another game. Stollar therefore becomes the third Hungarian girl to claim the European 16 & Under title, and first since Timea Babos did so in 2008.
A day earlier, Stollar had teamed up Dalma Galfi to win the doubles gold over Russians Anna Kalinskaya & Aleksandra Pospelova. The win must have been particularly satisfying for Stollar, who lost the 2013 gold medal match alongside Anna Bondar.
The boys’ singles final turned out to be a battle between the last two winners of the European 14 & Under title as 2012 champion Mikael Ymer of Sweden faced reigning champ Corentin Moutet of France.
Both players were in great form throughout the week in Moscow, and underlined their promise by taking out the top two seeds Mate Valkusz (Moutet, 6-0 6-4) and Stefanos Tsitsipas (Ymer, 7-5 7-5) in the semi-finals.
Moutet had the early advantage, consolidating an early break to lead 4-1 in the first set before Ymer came back to claim the set on a tie break. The loss of the first set seemed to sting the French boy into action though and he reeled off twelve of the next thirteen games to become the first boy since Mats Wilander to claim European Championship titles in two different age categories in successive years.
The win marks the third time in the last five years that a French boy has claimed the 16 & under title, with Moutet following in the footsteps of Mattias Bourgue (2010) and Enzo Couacaud (2011).
The previous day, Kenneth Raisma & Mattias Siimar made history by claiming the boys' doubles crown with a straight sets win over Czechs Patrik Rikl and Alessandro Ricci to become the first Estonians ever to win the title.
Both singles champions in Moscow are likely to fly into the upper reaches of the Top 10 of the Tennis Europe junior rankings on Tuesday. All four finalists will automatically qualify to compete in the Tennis Europe Junior Masters in Reggio Calabria in October and next turn their attention to the next week's European Summer Cups qualifying competition.
Draws and Results
Boys Singles | Boys Doubles | Girls Singles | Girls Doubles | Photos