SOUTH AFRICAN'S Grant Ive and Jason Blakey-Milner overcame a late charge in the finals of the 35th Brunei Group 4 International Tennis Federation Asia Junior Circuit Tournament boys' doubles yesterday, defeating the second seeded team of Thailand's Sorapon Imprapai and Grittaboon Prahmanee 6-4, 4-6, 6-4.
Contested at the National Tennis Centre, the fourth seeded South Africans who have been playing together for five years took the lead in the second set but were unable to keep their focus against the determined Thais
However they were able to close the game out after a stellar performance in the third set.
"I think we won today because we were simply more aggressive and our attacking style set the tempo of the game and the Thais were unable to counter that," said Ive.
The pair of 16-year-old hail from the city of East London, and apart from their aggressiveness, attribute their success to their teamwork and hard work.
"We've both been playing tennis for half our lives, and we were always confident of making it to the finals because of our experience," said Blakey-Milner, adding the pair were playing in their fifth ITF tournament.
Though Blakey-Milner was knocked out in the third round of the boys' singles, Ive made it all the way to the finals, where he will face seventh seed Sylvester Wee from Singapore today.
Third seed Ive beat India's sixth seed Parul Verma 6-1, 6-1 in the semi-finals yesterday.
Meanwhile, Wee surprised everyone by beating first seed Pattrayu Chumpet from Thailand 6-1, 5-7, 6-4 in the other semis.
In the girls' doubles final which was an all Thai affair, the third seed duo of Kanyapat Narattana and Natchanok Saenyaukhot beat the first seed team of Uthumporn Pudtra and Satjaporn Mahajaroenkul 7-5, 7-5.
"We are overjoyed to have won, and we were always confident of reaching the finals," said Narattana, adding that their task was made easier because of the wrist injury Pudtra was playing with.
The girls' singles finals today will be between Saenyaukhot, who is seeded eighth, and top seed Malaysian Jawariah Noordin. The Brunei Times
Sunday, March 11, 2007
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