14 August 2020 | Tennis Australia

Lizette Cabrera has continued her winning ways at the UTR Pro Tennis Series in Brisbane, with Dane Sweeny also claiming a confidence-boosting win in the fourth event at Pat Rafter Arena.

Cabrera extended her match-winning streak to six with a 7-5 5-7 [10-1] win over Naiktha Bains in the women’s final. It was the fourth straight decider Cabrera contested in Brisbane, the 22-year-old twice finishing runner-up to Maddison Inglis early in the series.

As she looks ahead to a US Open main draw appearance later this month, Cabrera is embracing the opportunity for match play.

After seizing her first title in Brisbane, the Queenslander related the value of returning to professional tennis after a long break due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It’s been really good. I mean, nothing beats match play and I think because we’ve been training for so long it kind of gave me a bit of excitement, something to look forward to,” said Cabrera.

The hard work showed as the top seed overcame the determined Bains in two hours and 11-minutes.

Cabrera overcame a fierce fightback as Bains recovered from a difficult opener.

After holding serving just once in the first set, the 22-year-old established a winning momentum late in the second – Bains saved two match points as Cabrera served at 5-4, winning four straight games to send the match into a deciding tiebreak.

But showing the composure that helped her secure a career-high ranking earlier this season, Cabrera surrendered just one more point to secure her hard-fought victory.

With a UTR of 12.34, Cabrera also claimed wins this week over Charlotte Kempenaers-Pocz and Olivia Gadecki, providing valuable experience ahead of her return to international tournaments.

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There was also an impressive performance as Dane Sweeny defeated Blake Ellis 6-4 7-6(4) in the men’s final.

Sweeny stamped his authority early, breaking serve in a tense first game that extended to three deuces. While Ellis levelled with a break of his own three games later, it was the 19-year-old Sweeny who was able to edge ahead at key moments.

He converted three of six breakpoints, with Ellis claiming two of eight break point opportunities. Countering some determined net play from the 21-year-old Ellis, Sweeny claimed the 6-4 7-6(4) in one hour and 49 minutes.

It followed this week over Chen Dong, Scott Puodziunas and Jayden Court for the No.3 seeded-Sweeny, who has a UTR of 13.56.

 The UTR Pro Tennis Series continues over the next month in both Sydney and Brisbane. All matches are streamed live on the Tennis Australia YouTube channel.

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