Optus 16s qualifying complete
Qualifying for the Optus 16s Australian Championships came to a close today with a group of hopeful teenagers one step closer to a national title writes James Bett.
Scott Webster headed a list of seeds to progress through to the main draw as qualifying for the Optus 16s Australian Championships concluded today.
The No.1 seed was in fine form, defeating the unseeded Michael Commings 6-0 6-2. It was an important win for Webster, who felt the pressure of being a seed in the qualifying stages.
“I feel good, got through the nerves of my first round, it’s always good to get through those nerves and qualify for the main draw.”
“I really wanted to qualify, a few years ago I was a seed but I didn’t qualify so this is a position I really wanted to be in.”
“I felt a lot more pressure and nerves especially the first round and you know I got through it and played some good tennis”
“I hit a lot of hard flat balls and picked the right shots and I thought I did that well and served well, which is good.”
Webster had a considerable size advantage over Commings, but insisted power was where his advantage lay today.
“I’ve been trying to work on my fitness and speed and the power will come eventually.”
The elation at making it through to the main draw was obvious for Scott, and he was excited at the prospect.
“Yeah I’m definitely excited to play with the big boys so it’ll be really good to test myself against them.”
When asked about his ambitions for the upcoming tournament, the Western Australian was fairly reserved. “You never know, I’ll see how far I can get to and play some good tennis and see what I can do.”
In other results, Alexandros Yiapposs caused an upset by beating 16th seed Benard Nkomba 6-1 6-3.
In the girls’ matches today, five seeds tumbled as the unseeded players prospered without the mental burden of expectation associated with their seeding in the qualification stages.
Madison Frahn beat fifth seed Megan Kauffman 6-2 5-7 6-2 in a see-sawing contest, while Kate Ragusa defeated sixth seed Imogen Howes 7-5 6-1.
Jaimee Fourlis played an arduous two-hour match against 12th seed Kayla McPhee defeating her 7-6(5) 3-6 6-4 on court 15, and Petra Hule had a tough straight sets win over 14th seed Georgia Dobell 6-4 6-3.
The top four seeds, however, all had comfortable wins, with number one seed Jaide Collins defeating Brianna Thompson 6-3 6-2 on court 15 and number two seed Alisa Jeregui having too much for Mimi Ahern-Briggs 6-2 6-0.
Third seed Natalie Rogers took just over an hour to account for Melanie Lasslett 6-16-2, meanwhile fourth seed Sasha Bollweg was tested in the first set against Catherine Krueger, before running away with the match 6-4 6-1.
In other girls’ matches, Ivana Vojinovic (15) defeated Amelia Charlton 6-1 6-1, Charleen Tiwari (10) beat Harriette North 6-1 6-1, Andjela Reljic (13) defeated Ivana Marinov 6-2 6-1 and eighth seed Genevieve Mccloskey overcame Evie Deaker 6-2 6-2.