The Croatian Tennis Association hosted the annual highlight of the European senior tennis calender last week, as almost 300 players from 36 nations descended on the picturesque resort of Umag to compete in the 2021 European Senior Championships. | Photo Gallery
Age categories from 30 to 85 were in action at the first S1000 series event of the season. Five world #1s and a total of 36 Top Ten players were among the entries for the tournament, which was dominated by players from Germany and Italy, who accounted for 13 of the 18 singles titles on offer.
The doubles field included a notable competitor: Men’s 45 entrant Dimitri Poliakov of Ukraine is perhaps best known in tennis for winning the ATP Tour title in Umag back in 1991. On this occasion he was not so successful, falling in the quarter finals with partner Sergey Korolev (RUS).
Amongst the winners were world #1 Christian Greuter (GER), who became the only player to defend a European Championship title when he was awarded a walkover victory over Spain’s Pablo Semprun in the Men’s 55 final.
Playing on the ITF Senior Tour for the first time in eight years, Davide Gregianin (ITA) swept through the draw to end Clemens Weinhandl’s (AUT) hopes of defending the men’s 45 title that he won at home in Pörtschach in 2019. The win marks a first European title for Gregianin.
On the women’s side, Kristine Quadflieg (GER) secured a silver medal in the 40s division for a second successive time, this time finishing as runner-up to Italy’s Katia Raffagnini Ceracchi.
Arguably the toughest event was the Women’s 55s. France’s Sophie Orsini emerged from a draw that featured six of the world’s Top 10 players to beat unseeded Swede Magdalena Sekkenes for the title.
In addition to hosting the ATP World Tour event, the venue in Umag is a popular and well-established stop on the ITF Seniors Circuit. A S700 event will also be held this week, allowing players the chance to participate in back-to-back events. Later this year the venue will also host the ITF Seniors World Championships.
During the week, players were treated to social events and many of the benefits of the world-class venue, including live streaming of matches from three show courts, service speed guns and daily on-site COVID testing.
CEO Thomas Hammerl commented, “On behalf of Tennis Europe, I’d like to thank the Croatian Tennis Association and its President Mrs. Nikolina Babic, as well as Tournament Director Mr. Petr Miric, President of the the Croatian Seniors Tennis Association for giving our senior players the opportunity to compete in such a professional and safe environment.
Seniors Tennis is a vibrant factor of our participation strategy and it is inspiring to see so many players eager to come here from all over the world to compete for our European Championship titles.”
Men’s 30 - Jens Janssen (GER) d. Sascha Moeller (GER) 16 64 2-0 ret.
Men’s 35 – (2) Sebastian Metzger (GER) d. (3) Christopher Tschamler (GER) 26 63 63
Men’s 40 – (1) Carsten Groeger (GER) d. (4) Adrian Ludwikiewicz (POL) 64 62
Men’s 45 – Davide Gregianin (ITA) d. (1) Clemens Weinhandl (AUT) 64 62
Men’s 50 – (1) Petr Kovacka (CZE) d. (4) David Taillefer (FRA) 62 61
Men’s 55 – (1) Christian Greuter (GER) d. (2) Pablo Semprun (ESP) w/o
Men’s 60 – (1) Pierre Godfroid (BEL) d. (2) Jamal Skalli (MAR) w/o
Men’s 65 – (1) Josef Baumgartner (GER) d. (3) Martin Cornish (GBR) 2-0 ret.
Men’s 70 – (2) Alfred Boeckl (GER) d. (3) Frank van Ierven (NED) 62 61
Men’s 75 – (1) Michael Beautyman (USA) d. (4) Alex Templer (GBR) 62 60
Men’s 80 – Roberto Franco Fumagalli (ITA) d. Wolfgang Bade (GER) 63 61
Women’s 35 – 1. Eileen Aranas-Rith (GER), 2. Nina Spath (GER) (RR)
Women’s 40 – 1. Katia Raffagnini Ceracchi (ITA), 2. Kristine Quadflieg (GER) (RR)
Women’s 45 – Patricia Rogulski (SVK) d. Valentina Padula (ITA) 61 60
Women’s 50 – (1) Simona Isidori (ITA) d. Cristina Giordani (ITA) 60 61
Women’s 55 – (3) Sophie Orsini (FRA) d. Magdalena Sekkenes (SWE) 63 62
Women’s 60 – Barbora Koutna (CZE) d. Carmen Lang Verdugo (ESP) 62 62
Women’s 65 – (2) Sabine Schmitz (GER) d. Margarethe Kerschbaum (AUT) 62 76(1)