Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Sophon crashes in qualifiers for ITF Juniors



Sophon crashes in qualifiers for ITF Juniors

Sen Sophon plays a forehand in his opening round qualifier. Photo supplied
Sen Sophon plays a forehand in his opening round qualifier. Photo supplied

Sophon crashes in qualifiers for ITF Juniors

The focus shifts to the showpiece Tep Khunnah Memorial ITF Juniors beginning at the National Training Center today with the Kingdom represented in the 32-player boys main draw by Tep Timothy, Leng Sarinreach and Chheang Vannasith, after Cambodian hopes Sen Sophon and Khleang Ponlok lost their first-round qualifying matches on Saturday.

South Korean Jaeyeon Yoo outplayed Kep’s poster boy Sophon from the Aspeca orphanage 6-0, 6-2, and Phnom Penh’s Ponlok battled hard in the second set before going down 1-6, 5-7 to Kaushik Hariharan of India.

Among the four wild-card entrants is Tep Timothy, grandson of the legendary late Tep Khunnah in whose memory this tournament has been staged.

“It is a highly emotional moment for our family and in particular Timothy who has grown up with the rich legacy left behind by my father,” said Tep Rithivit, the secretary-general of Tennis Cambodia.

The other wild-card holders are Ryo Watanabe of Japan, who is currently ranked 827th, Korean Lee Won-seok, ranked 1,348th and Takeshi Koey of Malaysia who is No1 in the ATF’s 14 & under rankings.

Two other Cambodian players, Chheang Vannasith and Leng Sarinreach, will also compete in the main draw of the first ever ITF Junior event held in the Kingdom. Vannasith and Sarinreach got into the main draw through their Cambodian ranking.

Meanwhile, Katie LaFrance (USA), currently 434th in the ITF Juniors ranking, was handed a wild card to the girls main draw. LaFrance’s rating places her above Runa Ichinose of Japan at 460th, who is the highest ranked direct entrant to the tournament. The second wild card pick is unranked Skia Kung of Chinese Taipei.

MOST VIEWED

  • Kingdom's Covid cluster cases jump to 194

    The Ministry of Health on February 25 confirmed 65 new cases of Covid-19, with 58 linked to the February 20 community transmission. The latest cluster cases include nine Vietnamese nationals, five Cambodians, one each from Korea, Singapore and Japan, with the rest being Chinese. This brings the total number

  • Locations shut, dozens more Covid-19 positive

    The Ministry of Health has closed 23 locations in connection with the February 20 community transmission of Covid-19 and summoned for testing anyone who had direct contact with affected people and places. The number of discovered related infections has risen to 76, including 39 women. In a press release,

  • Preah Sihanouk hit with travel ban

    Preah Sihanouk Provincial Administration has announced a temporary travel ban to and from the province, except for ambulances and trucks transporting goods. The announcement came after prime minister Hun Sen called on people in the province to travel only if necessary, and that people not

  • Cambodia's Covid cluster cases rise to 137

    The Ministry of Health on February 24 recorded 40 more cases of Covid-19, with 38 linked to the February 20 community transmission. Of the 40, two are imported cases involving Chinese passengers. The 38 include two Vietnamese nationals and one Cambodian, with the rest being Chinese. This brings the total cases

  • AstraZeneca jabs touch down in Phnom Penh airport

    The first shipment of 324,000 doses of the AstraZeneca/SII vaccine which was provided through the Covid-19 Vaccines Global Access (COVAX) Facility was delivered to Phnom Penh International Airport on March 2. The rest of the COVAX provided vaccines will arrive in Cambodia at a later date.

  • Covid cluster raises alarm, health bodies urge vigilance

    The Ministry of Health and the World Health Organisation (WHO) in Cambodia have expressed great concern over the February 20 cluster transmission of Covid-19 in the community. Both entities appealed for vigilance and cooperation in curbing further spread of the virus. Ministry spokeswoman Or Vandine said