SOUTH AFRICA AND NAMIBIA ENJOY THE GLORY AT JUNIOR TENNIS INTERNATIONAL
Namibian tennis star wins double title in Pretoria
Pretoria, South Africa – South Africa dominated the Gauteng North ITF
Junior International tennis event which ended at the Groenkloof Tennis
Stadium in Pretoria on Friday.
Namibia however won the girls singles crown spoiling a possible clean
sweep of titles by the host nation.
The boys singles was won by second seed Francois Kellerman of Durbanville in the Western Province who upset top seed Brandon Laubser of Gauteng East 6-4 1-6 6-2. It took the seventeen year old 2 hrs. 14 minutes to lift the title and capture his second international singles title. “I won my first international title earlier this year in Namibia beating the top seed so went into today’s final with added confidence” said Kellerman.
Kellerman was smart on court, using his serve and forehand to full
advantage and not swaying from his attacking game plan. “Last week at
the Wanderers ITF I went out in round two and knew I had to step up a
gear this week. The courts of Groenkloof played faster and the Dunlop
balls played better which suited my game” said Kellerman.
After winning the first set 6-4, Kellerman broke in the first game of
the second set but then Laubser came back strong and broke the fragile
Kellerman serve three times in a row to level sets. In the final set,
leading 2-1 Kellerman had three break points against him but dug deep
to hold serve then break to win the set and match. “When I faced those
break points in the fourth game of the final set I knew if I didn’t
hold, things could go the way of Brandon. Brandon is a great player and
good competitor and can come back strong in any given situation” said
In the girls singles, top seed Lesedi Jacobs of Namibia came out tops.
In a battle royal which took 3 hours 43 minutes in the warm winter
Highveld sun, Jacobs beat second seeded Katie Poluta of Cape Town 6-7
(6) 6-2 7-6 (2).
It was Jacobs fifth international title and a “bonus” win according to
the tournament favourite who said the week was ” tough” and she was
happy to “have pulled through with the title”.
In the opening set Lesedi lead 5-4 but lost serve and then squandered a
set point in the tie breaker. After a long 79 minutes Lesedi lost the
opening set. In the second set, Lesedi lifted her game and looked more
focused. “I started to think tactically and focused point by point. I
just needed to slow down and play more smartly” said Lesedi. The final
set was a real fight and went into the tie breaker. Lesedi played a
solid breaker, was more aggressive and it paid off. “Katie and I were
both tired. I knew that I had to put it all into that final set
breaker. I played aggressively but didn’t overplay the points and
capitalized on Katie struggling with her serve.”
The boys doubles was won by top seeds Calvin Jordaan and Kris Van Wyk
who beat second seeds twin brothers Francois Kellerman and Okkie
Kellerman, 7-5 6-7 (6) 10-2 in the all South African final. Jacobs won
the double when she teamed up with Georgina Kaindoah of Tanzania.
Jacobs and Kaindoah, seeded three beat South Africans Katie Poluta and
Nadine De Villiers the top seeds, 6-4 5-7 10-7.
FREE TO USE PICTURE
Francois: Second seed Francois Kellerman of South Africa in action at
the Gauteng North Junior ITF on Friday. Kellerman upset top seed and
fellow South African Brandon Laubser 6-4 1-6 6-2 to take the title in
the final. Francois001: Second seed Francois Kellerman of South Africa,
winner of the boys singles Gauteng North Junior ITF. Kellerman upset
top seed Brandon Laubser also of South Africa 6-4 1-6 6-2 to take the
title on Friday. Lesedi: Top seed Lesedi Jacobs of Namibia in action at
the Gauteng North Junior ITF on Friday. Jacobs beat second seed South
African Katie Poluta 6-7 (6) 6-2 7-6 (2) to take the title. Lesedi001:
Top seed Lesedi Jacobs of Namibia, winner of the girls singles Gauteng
North Junior ITF. Jacobs beat second seed Katie Poluta of South Africa
6-7 (6) 6-2 7-6 (2) in the final on Friday.
Picture credit: BLD Communications