The quarterfinals here at Kungens Kanna & Drottningens Pris looked, on paper, to be an open-and-shut case for most matches. There were of course favourites to win.
One such favourite was top seed Elmer Møller (Denmark), who played against the local hero Leo Borg. Leo’s play style and potential peak level means that no opponent can afford to feel safe against him. After both losing and then retaining his temper, Leo managed to take control of the match by 3-6, 0-2, taking a 5-3 lead and a set point at 5-4. But the Danish Møller refused to roll over, bounced back and finally won the match in tiebreak.
Joel Pierleoni (UK) completed a comeback to win his match against the other Swedish hope, Michael Minasyan, in one of the most even match ups we have seen so far in the tournament. Max Westphal’s (France) strong performance seemed to surprise even his opponent, Derrick Chen (UK), winning the match in two straight sets. The quarterfinal between Jack Pinnington Jones (UK) and Jacobi Bain (Bahamas) proved to be the match of the day, in which both players showed off excellent skill and determination. There could however only be one winner; Jack Pinnington Jones.
In Drottningens Pris there was but one Swedish girl left, Tabergsdalen’s Klara Milicevic, who played Elena Karner (Austria). After a nervous start from the Austrian the score was 4-1 Milicevic. This quickly changed when Karner regained her composure. Milicevic fell behind soon after and Karner ended the match convincingly in her favour.
Darja Vidmanova (Czech Republic) won a decisive victory in her match against Ksenia Aleshina (Russia), and Amarissa Toth’s (Hungary) tempo proved too tough for Michelle Tikhonka (USA). The most dramatic quarterfinal of the day in Drottningens Pris was between Maria Bondarenko (Russia) and Fatima Keita (Romania). Keita refused to let down, winning the match by 6-4 in the last set, proving a stronger tenacity.
– While we certainly were hoping to have a Swede make it through to the semi’s, the fact that such a scenario is finally a possibility fills me with joy, Tournament Director Joe Beaton says. At the start of this year’s tournament we honestly weren’t sure whether a Swede would be able to make it past Tuesday’s matches, he finishes.
For the first time since 2011 the semifinals of both Kungens Kanna & Drottningens Pris are missing the (previously) dominating Russians. In Kungens Kanna there are two Brits, one Dane and one French. The remaining players of Drottningens Pris are from Hungary, Romania, Austria and the Czech Republic.
– Our tournament is clear evidence of the fact that Tennis truly is a global sport – making sports such as skiing seem like a district championship, Beaton mentions with a smile.
Today’s matches include the singles semifinals and also the finals in doubles. In the boys doubles for the Peter Wallenbergs Honourary Price we have the Swedish Michael Minasyan partnering up with Jacobi Bain, the Bahamian “artist”, facing the British duo of Jack Pinnington Jones and Joel Pierleoni.
The girls doubles final consists of the pair Amarissa Toth from Hungary and the American Michelle Tikhonko, playing against the Russian partners Maria Bondarenko and Milana Zhabrailova.