Australia, 15 March 2024 | Leigh Rogers

Six promising junior athletes have been selected to represent Australia at the 2024 ITF World Junior Tennis Asia/Oceania Qualifying event in Malaysia.

This annual international team competition sees the world’s best 14-and-under athletes compete for national glory.

The girls’ competition runs in Kuching from 18-23 March, followed by the boys’ event from 25-30 March.

The Australians are among 16 national teams hoping to earn a coveted spot at the ITF World Junior Tennis Finals, held in the Czech Republic from 5-10 August.

Emilie Chen, who won the Australian Open Asia-Pacific Elite Trophy in January, leads the Australian girls’ team.

Jennifer Ott, the winner of the 14/u singles title at the 2023 Australian Junior Hardcourt Championships in October, and Vesna Marinkov, the younger sister of Australia’s No.2-ranked junior boy Pavle Marinkov, will also don the green and gold.

Australian 14/u girls’ team
Player Age
Emilie Chen (NSW) 14
Jennifer Ott (NSW) 13
Vesna Marinkov (NSW) 13
Team captain: Genevieve Lorbergs
Team manager: Greg Royle

Lucas Han, the winner of the 14/u singles title at the Australian Junior Grasscourt Championships in January, spearheads the boys’ team.

He is joined by Heaton Pann, the runner-up at the Australian Junior Grasscourt Championships, and Taiki Takizawa, who impressively won eight matches to claim a 14/u singles title as a qualifier on the Tennis Europe Junior Tour in January.

Australian 14/u boys’ team
Player Age
Lucas Han (Qld) 14
Heaton Pann (Qld) 13
Taiki Takizawa (Qld) 13
Team captain: Paul Vassallo
Team manager: Darren Moore

“Junior tours provide an exceptional and unique opportunity for young players to learn and grow on and off the court,” said Rohan Fisher, Tennis Australia’s Manager – Tours, Camps and College.

“As well as representing Australia and competing against the best junior players in the Asia/Oceania region, the athletes will learn pivotal life skills and enjoy an experience that will assist in their long-term development as players and people.

“Good luck to all of the selected athletes, we’re sure you’ll make Australia proud.”

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