Europeans have dominated this event yet again, featuring in the finals of all the major categories. The junior champions both came from Europe while three of the four finalists in the main draw also hailed from the Old Continent.
The youngest player in the draw at the tender age of just 14, Victoria Jimenez Kasintseva (pictured) has become the first ever player from Andorra to win a Grand Slam crown. She won several Tennis Europe Junior Tour 14&U events including Rotterdam and Mallorca, is the current holder of the 16&U title in Torelló, and also won the Category One Sanchez Casal tournament in Barcelona, the city which is her second home. Now, in 2020, she is the new girls’ champion and is one of the youngest grand slam junior winners. Playing above even her own expectations, she took out more experienced names such as second seeded Robin Montgomery (USA) and Italy’s Melania Delai on route to the decider. In the final she defeated her Polish opponent Weronika Baszak in a comeback 5-7 6-2 6-2 win. After winning she said “It’s incredible to be in Rod Laver Arena,” having never thought that one day she would be able to play there. “Thanks to my family and my entire team.”
In the boys’ singles final it was an all-French affair as friends and doubles partners Harold Mayot and Arthur Cazaux met in the final. Unfortunately for Cazaux it was a one-sided battle as his top-seeded opponent took the match 6-4 6-1. Mayot is a former champion of Tennis Europe’s Category 1 event in Bolton, while Cazaux was the 2016 gold medalist in the 14&U Doubles in the European Junior Championships. “It is an amazing feeling to win here in Australia,” said the champion after his time playing on the fabled Center Court in Melbourne Park. It was a great event for Europe, claiming seven of the eight quarter finalists including two other French boys as well as former Corregio and Pavia 14&U finalist Dominic Stephan Stricker of Switzerland.
Girls: Alexandra Eala (PHI) & Priska Madelyn Nugroho (INA) d Ziva Falkner (SLO) & Matilda Mutavdzic (GBR)
Boys: Nicholas David Ionel (ROU) & Leandro Riedi (SUI) d Mikolaj Lorens (POL) & Karlis Ozolins (LAT) 6-7 7-5 10-4
Again, it was a very strong showing for European players who accounted for all four semi-final spots. Dominic Thiem was too good for Alexander Zverev in Friday’s semi, while on Thursday, Novak Djokovic advanced his head-to-head count against Roger Federer to 27-23. Once again, the Dominic Thiem train was halted in a Grand Slam final by one of the “Big Three”. A resurgent Novak Djokovic claimed his 17th major crown with a 6-4 4-6 2-6 6-3 6-4 win.
In the women’s singles, it was a first major final and first victory for young American Sofia Kenin, whose parents emigrated to the United States from Russia. She pulled the plug on Garbiñe Muguruza’s resurrection from the tennis doldrums to Slam winners’ circle, scoring a 4-6 6-2 6-2 victory. The Spaniard has teamed again with Conchita Martinez and has seen a quick return to peak performance.
Women: Timea Babos (HUN) & Kristina Mladenovic (FRA) d Hsieh Su-Wei (TPE) & Barbora Strycova (CZE) 6-2 6-1
Men: Rajeev Ram (USA) & Joe Salisbury (GBR) d Max Purcell (AUS) & Luke Saville (AUS) 6-4 6-2
Mixed: Barbora Krejcikova (CZE) & Nikola Metkic (CRO) d Bethanie Mattek-Sands (USA) & Jamie Murray (GBR) 5-7 6-4 10-1