Schedule a training visit to the prestigious Junior Tennis Champions Center in College Park, MD by clicking on the banner above

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Eddie Herr ITF First Round Complete with Last Week's Merida Grade A Finalists Advancing; All Top 4 Seeds in 12s, 14s and 16s Advance to Round of 16

©Colette Lewis 2019--

Bradenton FL--
After many late nights at the ITF Grade A in Merida Mexico last week, the four singles finalists returned to tennis in the sunlight Tuesday at the ITF Grade 1 Eddie Herr Championships and all managed to set aside their fatigue to advance to the second round. 

Fourteen-year-old Victoria Jimenez Kasintseva of Andorra, who is the rare junior to win the first Grade A she played in, was tested by No. 12 seed Giulia Morlet, but Jimenez Kasintseva continued her winning streak with a 7-6(6), 6-4 victory over the 17-year-old left-hander from France, who did not play either of the Mexican tournaments last month.

The first set took nearly an hour and a half to complete, but Jimenez Kasintseva was able to get the early break in the second set, going up 4-2, only to lose it. But just as Morlet was reasserting herself, she threw in an awful service game at 4-4, double faulting twice and going down 0-40. Jimenez Kasintseva didn't waste any time converting her opportunity to break, smacking a forehand winner to go up 5-4 and holding at love for the win.

Jimenez Kasintseva, herself a left-hander, said she had adequate practice to prepare for Morlet, having faced two left-handers in her run to the Merida title: Robin Montgomery and Darja Semenistaja of Latvia.

"Last week I played two," Jimenez Kasintseva said. "I don't really mind; sometimes I think it's difficult, but you have to play with everybody. My opponent was a really good player, and I am still a bit tired from my last tournament. I had a long trip yesterday, so I'm really happy that I won. I played really good and I think I had a really good attitude and that's what got me through."

Jimenez Kasintseva will have a chance Wednesday to avenge her last loss when she faces Yasmine Kabbaj of Morocco, who beat Jimenez Kasintseva 6-2, 7-6(5) in the second round of last month's Grade 1 in Cancun, on hard courts.

Jimenez Kasintseva, who is also entered in next week's Grade A Orange Bowl, did not enter doubles this week, hoping to get a bit more time to recover during this stretch of back-to-back-to-back-to back tournaments.

The Merida girls finalist, Melodie Collard of Canada, was taken to three sets today by Laura Hietaranta of Finland, but the No. 4 seed came back to post a 4-6, 6-3, 6-1 win in two and a half hours. 

Merida boys champion Thiago Tirante of Argentina, seeded No. 2 this week, defeated Joao Victor Couto Loureiro of Brazil 6-4, 6-2, while Merida finalist Arthur Cazaux of France, the No. 6 seed this week, beat Juan Bautista Torres of Argentina 6-2, 7-5. 

After one round of singles, 15 of 16 boys seeds have advanced, with the only loss by a seed coming today on Court 1. Wild card Jerry Shang of China, this year's 14s Easter Bowl champion, took out No. 16 seed Sebastian Nothhaft of Hong Kong 6-3, 2-6, 6-3. Shang, the 2017 Eddie Herr 12s champion, is now training at the IMG Academy.

Morlet was the only girls seed to lose today, but five lost on Monday.

The first round of doubles was completed today, and the No. 2 seeded team did not take the court. Merida champions Dali Blanch and Tirante withdrew prior to the start of play. Tirante is also entered in next week's Orange Bowl and after taking both titles last week is in need of a little less time on court this week.  Top seeds Mikolaj Lorens of Poland and Shunsuke Mitsui of Japan advanced with a 6-4, 6-1 win over Cash Hanzlik and Benjamin Kittay. Wild cards Karl Kazuma Lee and Ishaan Ravichander defeated No. 4 seeds Elmer Moller of Denmark and Eliakim Coulibaly of Cote d'Ivoire 6-4, 6-3.

In the girls doubles, No. 2 seeds Darja Semeninstaja of Latvia and Maria Timofeeva of Russia lost to Savannah Broadus and Kylie Collins 3-6, 6-2, 10-5. Top seeds Linda Fruhvirtova and Kristyna Lavickova of the Czech Republic beat Ava Catanzarite and Gianna Pielet 5-7, 7-5, 10-8.

The top four seeds in the 12s, 14s and 16s all have advanced to Wednesday's third round, which is far from normal when there are so many players from all over the world who may be playing outside of their country for the first time. Doubles also began today in the younger age groups, with results available at the TennisLink site.

The ITF revamped its websites overnight and not everything is where it was before. I'm sure I'll get used to it, but I have been given permission to post links to the ITF draws and the order of play on Google documents. I personally find these sheets much easier to work with than what appears on the ITF Junior site, so I am happy to be able to provide them.


Mark said...

Thanks for your great coverage of ITF junior tennis :-)
I really appreciate it. Very good and interesting info.

What do you think about quickly rising Victoria Jimenez Kasintseva?
She has quite impressive results for her age. What do you think about her potential regarding WTA Tour?

Will she keep playing for small Andorra? Hopefully she will stay and not leave for big Spain - because of money reasons.
I read her father is from Andorra. Where is her mother (Kasintseva) from? Maybe from Russia or Moldova?

I watched her play on livestream and she seems quite tall for her age.
Also being a lefty is always adavantage in tennis. There are many examples.
And Victoria seems quite consistent, mentally strong, smart and has good strokes from what I saw in her match vs Bondarenko in Merida.

Here a link to her match/win at JA Merida over Maria Bondarenko:

Thanks for you answer. And for your great articles and photos!