A 12-year-old sensation on the girls’ side is included in the unique group of the Last 8 Club as the semifinalists in the Kungens Kanna & Drottningens Pris are to be played on Friday.

Many perhaps raised their eyebrows when they watched the first match of the day on court 3 at the Royal Tennis Hall. There, 12-year-old Darina Matvejeva from Latvia impressed. Darina, who won a Tennis Europe U14 cat 3 event in France in January, received a wild card in Stockholm and expressed her gratitude by defeating third-seeded Mariia Makarova with 7-5, 6-4.

“It was a very tough match, and I am so happy to win today. I will do my very best in the quarterfinals and try to make it to the final in the end,” says the determined 12-year-old.

The next player to upset one of the favorites was Daniel Baranes from Israel, who won against second-seeded Keisija Berzina from Latvia on the same court with 6-2, 7-6.

Baranes won the Orange Bowl for 12-year-olds in December after defeating Megan Knight in the final, who is also in the quarterfinals in Stockholm. The 13-year-old British player also received a wild card for Kungens Kanna & Drottningens Pris and has truly justified the trust placed in her. On Thursday, she knocked out fourth-seeded Anna Pircher from Austria, who reached the semifinals in Tarbes.

“It was a tough match with long rallies. Reaching the quarterfinals feels significant as I am a year younger; it feels like a fantastic opportunity,” says Megan.

Tea Kovacevic from Bosnia feels at home in Stockholm and won the round of 16 against Laura Chlumska 6-2, 7-5. The only match that went to three sets was between Polina Skliar from Ukraine and Aurelia Löhrer from Germany. The Ukrainian won 6-1, 1-6, 6-3 and was very happy afterwards.

“I can play better and more aggressively than I did today; I just really wanted to win and progress,” says the Ukrainian.

For top-seeded Jana Kovackova from the Czech Republic, Xinran Sun from China, and Sophie Triquart from Germany, it was comfortable victories in two sets.

Late into Thursday evening, the last match in the round of 16 on the boys’ side concluded. Second-seeded Pavel Oliver Dufek from the Czech Republic could breathe a sigh of relief after a 6-1, 6-7, 6-2 victory over Polish Blazej Krzysko. On Friday, he faces Canadian Callum MacKinnon, who had a tough match against Francisco Sardinha from Portugal, where he won 1-6, 7-6(2), 6-4.

“It was a bit shaky at the beginning. In the second and third sets, I found my game again. I like playing on these courts, and I am so grateful for everyone who makes it so good here,” says Callum.

Top-seeded Richard Krizan from Slovakia faces seventh-seeded Andrei Radu in another quarterfinal. Both won after three sets on Thursday.

Johann Nagel-Heyer from Germany won confidently and faces qualifier Nikita Berdin on Friday, who surprised and knocked out third-seeded Stan Put from the Netherlands in three sets, who reached the quarterfinals in Tarbes. Nikita Berdin is 13 years old and claimed the title in another Tennis Europe event in Sweden earlier this year, in Vänersborg, after defeating Melker Andersson (Ystads TK) in the final.

Erikas Maskolaitis from Lithuania against Sebastian Tejerina from Poland could also be an exciting match.

“It’s the first time I’m in the quarterfinals of a super category, and now I hope I can reach the final. I played really well against one of my best friends today (Tomas Laukys, USA),” says Maskolaitis.

Enjoy the tennis Friday!