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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Juniors grab tennis titles at second tournament

A young player hits a forehand during a match at the National Training Center
A young player hits a forehand during a match at the National Training Center yesterday. MAM PHALKUN

Juniors grab tennis titles at second tournament

Stepping up to the girls U14 category for the first time in the second national junior tennis tournament after reeling off five U12 singles titles on the trot, Hour Srey Pov proved unstoppable yet again, racing away to another popular triumph in beating Sary Sodane 4-2, 4-0 in the final game of a five-player round robin at the National Training Center yesterday.

Hour Srey Pov’s superior court craft and match fitness came to the fore as she dominated her rival, who rarely takes part in national events hosted by Tennis Cambodia. This lack of match readiness and Srey Pov’s consistency proved Sary’s undoing.

The Girls U12 title went to Cheng Sereyvatey, who out played top seeded Daria Rakitina 6-0, 6-1 in the final. Hitting some clean winners on her forehand, Sereyvatey constantly exacted errors from her opponent.

In the semi-finals, Daria Rakitina got past Auch Sreynuch 6-1, 6-2, while Cheng Sereyvatey delivered two bagels to Met Maryan, 6-0, 6-0.

Coming out of a mid-match crisis, top seeded Cheng Channeang steadied herself to post a 6-0, 6-7, 6-1 win over second seeded Ith Leakhena in the Girls U18 final. Leakhena’s net advances in the second somewhat upset Channeang’s rhythm in the second, but the top seed quickly rediscovered her touch to wrap up the contest in style.

On the way to the final, Cheng Channeang blanked Heng Ry 6-0, 6-0, while Leakhena, outsmarted in the first set, bounced back to beat Ong Sreypov 0-6, 6-1, 6-3 Leng Sarinreach took the Boys U12 title, beating Cheum Seyha 6-4, 6-0 in the final.

Both Sarinreach and Seyha had an easy time in the semi-finals, Sarinreach beat Sen Saukeng 6-1, 6-0 and Seyha took Sam David in his stride 6-1, 6-4.

Sen Sophon repeated his success over Tep Timothy in the Boys U14 singles final, but not before being made to fight every inch of the way.

In a match full of fast changing patterns between the top two seeds, Sophon finally managed to peg back Timothy at 7-6, 6-4, with both players giving their best all the way.

Unforced errors cost Timothy dear in the tie-breaker. Nerves and fatigue touched both the players as pace on court considerably slowed down in the second. Yet Sophon managed to stay in front.

Timothy spectacularly saved one match point at 4-5 down with a running forehand winner. But it didnt take long for Sophon to polish off the tie.

In the semi-finals, Sen Sophon beat Sreum Tola 6-3, 7-6 (4) and Timothy downed Khlang Ponlok 6-2, 6-0.

In the Boys U18 final, traffic flowed one-way as unseeded Cheng Rongreach controlled the tempo of the match from start to finish, handing out a 6-0, 6-1 defeat to Sok Vichet.

In fact, Rongreach’s power in the forehands came into play when he met and ousted defending champion and top seed Chheang Vannasak in the early part of the draw.

Both Rongreach and Vichet found an easy passage to the final, Rongreach beating Yi Sarsarith 6-1, 6-2 and Vichet equally impressive in his 6-2,6-2 win over Soeun Sothol.

This second tournament of the six planned for the year was organised by Tennis Cambodia in partnership with Ezecom and Hagar Catering, who have committed themselves to supporting the circuit the whole way.

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