Monday, July 8, 2019
AMERICANS Alexander Bernard and Ava Catanzarite emerged as the boys’ and girls’ champions of the International Tennis Federation’s Junkanoo Bowl junior tennis tournament.
After carting off their respective singles titles on Friday at the National Tennis Centre, the duo also closed out play by adding the doubles titles to their collection.
Bernard, the shorter southpaw from Florida, clinched the boys’ crown with an impressive 6-4, 6-3 over fellow American Jack Anthrop, the No.2 seed in the tournament.
After eliminating Bahamian Jacobi Bain, another lefty who played as the No.6 seed, in the quarter-finals, Bernard survived his toughest battle in the semi-final where he got by American Victor Lilov, the No.5 seed, in the semi-final.
Anthrop, on the other hand, had straight victories in his four matches to get into the final, including a 6-1, 6-2 decision over unseeded American Jakub Ostajewski.
True to form, the final came down to the two top seeds, but Bernard was no match for Anthrop as he was as steady in his game as he was all tournament long.
Bernard then teamed up with Oskar Brostrom from Denmark as the top seeds in doubles. However, they didn’t have to sweat it out in the final after they were awarded a walkover victory against Anthrop and Spencer Brachman from the United States.
Once again Bain lasted the longest as a Bahamian, teaming up with Benjamin Heynold from Great Britain as the No.4 seeds. They reached the quarter-finals where they were ousted by Americans Samuel Reichbach and Diego Trejo, who eventually lost in the semis to Anthrop and Brachman.
As for the girls’ singles, Catanzarite was crowned the new champion. The No.3 seed won over No.4 seed Anika Jaskova from Slovenia 6-4, 6-3.
Catanzarite reached the final with a 7-6 (3), 6-2 win over No.7 seed Sonya Macavei from the USA, while Jaskova won 6-2, 6-0 over American Sophie Williams.
Bahamian Sydney Clarke was the defending champion and the No.1 seed. Her journey through this year’s tournament was cut short in the quarter-final by Macavei in identical scores of 6-1, 6-1.
Catanzarite also teamed up with fellow American Maya Rukosuev as the No.4 seed to take the doubles title to the United States with a 6-3, 3-6 (10-4) win over fellow Americans Mary Grace Armistead and Sophie Williams.
Bain, teaming up with Tangia Riley-Codrington from Barbados, was the No.3 seed. They made it to the quarter-final before they made their exit, thanks to a 6-2, 6-4 decision by Armistead and Williams.
Mickey Williams served as the IFT supervisor. The tournament director was Wesley Rolle. There was also a 14-and-under and 16-and-under tournament played between the local players, organised by George Baxter.
Peyton Anderson added the under-16 girls’ title to the BLTA’s junior national crown she won the week before by winning over Sierra Rodgers. Anthony Burrows Jr clinched the boys’ under-16s title over Grand Bahamian Denali Nottage.
Sierra Rodgers, however, took care of the girls’ 14s crown with her victory over Saphirre Ferguson, while the boys’ 14s title was won by Dentry Mortimer Jr over Clint Newry.
The BLTA thanked all of the persons who made the event a success, including Williams, Baxter, Rolle and the officiating crew that comprised of Bradley Bain, Mike Butler, Perry Newton, Michael Cooper, Everett, Steve Taylor and Esther Newton.
A special thanks were also expressed to the players, who travelled from around the world to participate and the fans, who showed up to cheer them on in their matches.