Tijana Sretenovic (SRB) and Gilles Arnaud Bailly (BEL) have been crowned champions at this year’s TIM ESSONNE Category 1 event. In doing so, they have also added their names to an illustrious list of former winners. In 1983 the tournament began with players from just five nations. Now, 36 years later, the tournament is stronger than ever and boasts representatives from over 50 nations. Some top players that have graced these courts on the outskirts of Paris include Kim Clijsters, Arantxa Sanchez-Vicario, and Richard Gasquet as well as former champions Tsvetana Pironkova, Andrey Rublev, Martina Hingis and Rafael Nadal.
TIM Essonne, Sainte-Geneviève-des-Bois (FRA, 14 & Under)
Following up an impressive run to the semi-finals at Les Petits As, Bailly has now won his biggest title. The Belgian came in to the final strongly, and was especially impressive in his straight-sets win over second seed Maxim Zhukov (RUS) and his semi-final rout of fifth seed Georg Eduard Israelan (GER). Nevertheless, as the eighth seed, he was still considered the underdog in the final where he faced top seed Mihai Alexandru Coman. The Romanian had had some tougher matches on route to the decider but nevertheless clawed his way into his first major final. He was also the top seed in Stockholm recently where he fell in the semis and took another step forward here in France. Although he may be disappointed with a runner-up berth, he will no doubt continue to make a big impact this season. Both players fought tooth and nail, especially in the second set, for what would have been a first Category 1 win for either player. Coman put up solid resistance in the second set, but Bailly held him at bay to avoid a third set and take the title 6-2 7-6(5).
Adding to her win at the Christmas Cup in January, Sretenovic has won her second title Category 1 title of the year. The number four seed eased her way to the quarterfinal, before being made to work for her three-set win over fifth seed Valery Gynina (RUS). In the semi-final she overcame in-form French 15th seed Sarah Iliev, who has made back-to-back semis after her great run last week in Le Chambon sur Lignon. Her opponent in the final was top seed Kristyna Tomajkova (CZE), who had advanced to the final in dominant fashion without dropping a set. After an extremely tough battle for the first set, Sretenovic held her nerve to secure a crucial break in the second set to then grab a 7-6(9) 6-3 win.
In the boys’ doubles final yesterday, Demin got his own back, teaming with compatriot Grigor Shebekin to get revenge on Coman and his partner Jakub Mensik (CZE), after falling to Coman in their singles semi-final earlier on. The Russian pair won the match and the title 7-6(3) 2-6 10-6.
Gynina has won her second Category 1 doubles this year, having taken the Kremlin Cup in January. Playing with Malwina Rowinska (POL), the pair defeated the singles champ Tomajkova & Nikola Bartunkova (CZE) in an even tighter doubles final than the boys’ match, outlasting their opponents to take the title 7-5 6-7(4) 10-6.
18th Realsport Open, Milovice (CZE, 16 & Under)
Local players romped home in all events here this week. Oldrich Vejsicky defeated Vojtech Burian in the boys’ final, while Patrick Homola & Simon Myslivec won the boys’ doubles. It was a fantastic week at home for Dominika Salkova, who took both the singles and doubles crown. She defeated Ema Bubalo (CRO) in the singles final and teamed up with Julie Struplova to win the doubles.
Slovan Open U14 2019, Bratislava (SVK, 14 & Under)
There was more victory for Czech players across the border, although local players also held their own, with the two nations splitting the four titles two apiece. Vit Kalina (CZE) was too strong for Matej Dodig (CRO) in the boys’ singles. Another Czech win came in the girls’ doubles with Sara Bejlek & Lucie Urbanova winning that event. Slovakian Nina Vargova was too strong for her compatriot Nikola Daubnerova in the girls’ singles final. Michal Krajci & Markus Lazarcik claimed the host nation’s second title with victory in the boys’ doubles.
Golden Jerusalem Trophy, Jerusalem (ISR, 14 & Under)
Vladimir Bazilevskiy & Ido Samimyan (ISR) were the dominant players in the boys’ fields, with Bazilevskiy beating his friend in the final to win his second tournament in a row, following his victory in Tel Aviv last week. The two were immediately back on court and teamed up to win the doubles title, backing up their win from last week and giving the home crowd plenty to cheer about. Luca Udvardy (HUN), also scored a double victory. In the girls’ singles final she did one better than last week’s runner-up finish in Tel Aviv and saw off Liam Oved (ISR) in the singles final. She was also able to go one better with her doubles partner Margherita Marcon (ITA) after their loss in the doubles final last week by clinching the doubles title here.
For full results from all Tennis Europe Junior Tour events over the past week, click here. A full report from both weeks of the ITF/Tennis Europe Development Championships in Antalya will follow next week.