Top seed Jasika faces qualifier in Cairns
Aussie young gun Omar Jasika heads the men’s field at the 2015 Cairns Tennis International this week and opens his campaign against qualifier Jake Delaney.
World No.271 and top seed Omar Jasika heads the men’s field in the 2015 Cairns Tennis International this week.
The rising Melbourne teenager will open his account on Tuesday against qualifier Jake Delaney and is on track for a potential semifinal showdown against in-form Chinese player Li Zhe.
Li, seeded third, is coming off an impressive run to the final last week in Alice Springs where he also took the doubles title.
He no doubt looms as one of the favourites for the title in Cairns, however, eighth seed Jacob Grills lurks in his section of the draw and the young Victorian will be looking to create a quarterfinal upset should that match eventuate.
Based on current form, unseeded Czech Robin Stanek may pose the biggest threat in the bottom half of the draw.
Romping to the title in Alice Springs without dropping a set last week, the 20-year-old will have further success firmly in his sights. Teenage wildcard Marc Polmans will have his work cut for him as Stanek’s opponent in round one.
Second seed Alex Bolt will be looking to improve upon his showing in Alice Springs where he was bundled out in the second round.
He sits amongst a raft of in-form Australians in the draw including Steven de Waard and Alice Springs semifinalists Dayne Kelly and Maverick Banes. Should he survive, a semifinal test against fourth seed Gavin Van Peperzeel may await.
The women’s draw in Cairns boasts a markedly international flavour, with top seed Eri Hozumi from Japan and second seeded Dutchwoman Cindy Burger the pair to chase, both currently sitting inside the world’s top 200.
Hozumi faces qualifier Tammi Patterson in the first round, something of a groundhog day situation for Patterson who also qualified last week (in Tweed Heads) only to find herself drawn against the top seed.
On that occasion, it was Jessica Moore, and Patterson caused the upset of the tournament, bundling her out in straight sets.
Hozumi will need to stay sharp to keep the Sydneysider from repeating that performance.
Burger has a tough assignment in the first round as well, facing experienced Austrian Pia Konig.
She will also need to contend with Alice Springs runner-up Storm Sanders and the highest Australian seed, Moore (No.6) in her section of the draw. Moore will be hungry to improve upon that shock first round loss last week.
Should Hozumi progress, a tricky encounter against the ACT’s Alison Bai is likely and looking deeper, there’s a potential semifinal against either her countrywoman and third seed Misa Eguchi or Alice Springs titlist, unseeded 17-year-old Hungarian Dalma Galfi.
Main draw play begins on Tuesday.