West Vancouver’s Hollyburn Country Club is the site for world class tennis this week as the host of the 2019 Odlum Brown VanOpen. Four top-100 players were part of the women’s main draw but the players outside the top-100 have proven to be worthy opponents! Only one of the top-5 seeds remain as Quarterfinal action begins on Friday.
16-year-old Leylah Fernandez has been a fan favourite at the Odlum Brown VanOpen and is the last Canadian left standing in either the Men’s or Women’s singles draw.
In her first match, Fernandez dispatched No. 7 seed American Varvara Lepchenko 6-3, 7-6(1). Lepchenko turned pro in 2001, a year before Fernandez was born in 2002.
The teen continues to turn heads as she clinched a Quarterfinal berth on Thursday afternoon with a 6-2, 4-0 (ret.) win over Ashley Kratzer of the United States. Kratzer appeared to be nursing a leg injury, calling for the trainer after the first set. She continued to battle in the second set but ultimately decided to retire from the match.
Fernandez should not be overlooked as a VanOpen title contender. She’s already captured her maiden ITF Pro circuit title with a victory at the Gatineau 25K in July. In addition to the singles crown, Fernandez also captured the doubles title in Gatineau, alongside fellow Canadian Rebecca Marino.
The young Canadian will face Japan’s Nao Hibino on Friday. Hibino ousted Arina Rodionova of Australia 6-4, 3-6, 6-4, to secure her place in the Quarterfinals.
Australian Priscilla Hon bested 2018 VanOpen champion and No.2 seed, Japan’s Misaki Doi, 6-4, 6-3. She continued her strong play in a marathon 3-set match against Xiyu Wang of China. Hon clinched a Quarterfinal berth with a 7-6(5), 3-6, 7-6(3) victory over the impressive 18-year-old.
Hon will face Hungary’s Timea Babos who ousted Canadian and crowd favourite No. 5 seed Eugenie Bouchard. Babos dropped the first set against Bouchard before coming back to win the next two decisively, the final score was 3-6, 6-3, 6-1. The Hungarian booked her place in the Quarterfinals with a 7-5, 6-2 victory over Britain’s Harriet Dart.
Spain’s Sara Sorribes Tormo is the only top-5 seed remaining in the tournament. Sorribes Tormo battled back from a tough first set against Paraguay’s Veronica Cepede Royg to win 2-6, 6-4, 7-6(3). The No.3 seed will now face Qualifier Ena Shibahara of Japan.
Australia’s Maddison Inglis defeated top-seed Alison Van Uytvanck of Belgium in the 1st round before besting American Asia Muhammad in a close match, 2-6, 7-6(3), 6-4. The road doesn’t get any easier for Inglis who’s quarterfinal opponent is 2018 VanOpen finalist Heather Watson. The British player has yet to drop a set in the tournament after besting Canada’s Carson Branstine and Kurumi Nara of Japan in succession.
Look out for Canadian Sharon Fichman and her Australian doubles partner Storm Sanders as they face Japanese pair Nao Hibino and Miyu Kato in the semifinals. The winner of the match will face Great Britain’s Naomi Broady and doubles partner Erin Routliffe of New Zealand.
Top seed Ricardis Berankis headlines a competitive field of Odlum Brown VanOpen Quarterfinalists. Action is set to begin at 2pm PST from Hollyburn Country Club in West Vancouver.
Lithuanian Ricardis Berankis has proven why he is the No. 1 seed at the VanOpen this year as he powered his way past Lloyd Glasspool of Britain with a 7-6(4), 6-1 victory. Berankis now faces his toughest match of the tournament against Australian Thanasi Kokkinakis who has yet to drop a set. Kokkinakis dispatched No.8 seed German Dominik Koepfer 6-4, 6-4 to secure his place in the Quarterfinals.
Vancouver’s Vasek Pospisil garnered a lot of support from the hometown crowd. However, his tournament came to an end after a hard-fought 3-set battle against former world No. 19 Hyeon Chung of South Korea. Chung looked unstoppable after rallying back from one set down to take the match and advance. However, France’s Maxime Janvier proved to be too much for the No.11 seed, securing his place in the Quarterfinals with a 6-4, 6-2 victory.
Janvier will face British Qualifier Liam Broady. Broady upset No.4 seed Malek Jaziri of Tunisia 6-3, 5-7, 6-4 to earn his spot in the Quarterfinals.
Canadian Brayden Schnur was hoping for redemption after an early exit at the 2018 VanOpen. Unfortunately, France’s Enzo Couacaud had his own intentions and was able to win a close 7-5, 6-4 match. Couacaud will face Japan’s Go Soeda in the Quarterfinals. Soeda bested No. 5 seed Brazilian Thiago Monteiro 7-6(2), 4-6, 2-1 (ret’d.)
Australian Marc Polmans is looking for his third career ATP Challenger title after booking his ticket to the Quarterfinals with a 6-4, 4-6, 7-5 victory over Tallon Griekspoor of the Netherlands. Polmans will be matched up against Taiwan’s Jason Jung.
Canadian Adil Shamasdin and doubles partner Treat Huey of the Phillipines etched out a win in an extremely close Quarterfinal match vs. Britain’s Luke Bambridge and Japanese partner Ben Mclachlan. The final score was 5-7, 7-6 (11), 14-12. Shamasdin and Huey now face American Jackson Withrow and Venezuelan partner Roberto Maytin in the doubles semifinals.
(Feature photo : Photo : Bo Mon Kwon)