No shrinking Violet: Apisah into 14s final
Teen sensation Violet Apisah continues her dominant week at Melbourne Park, setting up the 14/u Australian Championships final against top seed Jeanette Lin.
Third seed Violet Apisah has raced into the final of the 14/u Australian Championships at Melbourne Park on Wednesday after beating Kiwi Nina Paripovich 6-0 6-2.
The 14-year-old from Sydney has been in devastating form this week and has only lost 16 games en route to the final – and that includes coming back from a set down in her third round match.
“I was playing really good today, but I just fell asleep a bit at the end,” Apisah said, in reference to the two games she dropped at the conclusion of the second set.
She now meets top-seeded Victorian Jeanette Lin, a comfortable victor over fifth seed Gabriella Da Silva-Flick 6-2 6-4.
Like Apisah, Lin has also moved through the draw in formidable fashion and her win now sets up a tantalising final between the two on Thursday.
Apisah, however, will take some confidence into that match having beaten Lin in the final of the New South Wales Junior International in Gosford back in October.
Apisah and her younger sister Patricia, now 13, have been something of a phenomenon on the Australian junior scene. The pair – who came to Australia from Papua New Guinea just over six years ago – has even drawn comparisons to the Williams sisters.
While it’s clearly very early days, Violet is enamoured by the heady compliment.
“My idol is Serena and I just want to follow in her footsteps,” she said.
Although the girls never played tennis competitively before they arrived in Australia, father Patrick is a tennis coach and both girls started out just hitting the ball with the other kids he was coaching.
They also have a strong tennis background with Patrick’s sisters, Abigail and Marcia Tere-Apisah, both playing US college tennis.
It wasn’t too long before Violet and Patricia began entering tournaments and at first, the family was forced to travel by public transport, but thanks to a loan from St George Illawarra via their tennis centre at Carss Park, they managed to purchase a second-hand car.
The focus on their undoubted talent truly began to sharpen when they grabbed the 12/u Australian Championships doubles title here at Melbourne Park in 2012 – their first ever foray interstate.
The then-unseeded sisters beat the top seeds in the final; a pairing that featured –interestingly – Jeanette Lin.
This year though, Violet says that she and Patricia aren’t partnering together.
“She wanted to play with another girl, so I just said, OK.”
Violet has also entered the 16/u Australian Championship taking place at Melbourne Park next week.
The final of the boy’s 14s event will be fought out on Thursday between Queenslander Alexander Crnokrak and Kiwi Macsen Sisam, after each won their respective semifinals on Wednesday.
Third-seeded Crnokrak continued his strong display this week with a 6-3 6-3 victory over unseeded Victorian Thomas Bosancic, while 16th seed Sisam proved too strong for Adam O’Shannessy, also winning 6-3 6-3.