Junior player Andrea Taylor hits a backhand. She won a title last month in Norway on the ITF circuit.

As the weather in the northern hemisphere starts to improve, the tennis season also heats up and that comes with some strong Canadian results of the ITF junior tour, particularly in Norway. 

A group of Canadian girls, led by Andrea Taylor, walked away from a pair of J60 events in Norway over the last month with a considerable amount of hardware, the highlight being a doubles title for Taylor and fellow Canadian Anastasia Malysheva in the town of Gjovik. 

That Gjovik doubles draw was the highlight of the last month for the Canadians on the junior circuit, as Malysheva and Taylor won an all-Canadian final against Andrea Cabio and Charlize Celebrini.  

In the semifinals, the pressure to guarantee a title for Canada was on the third-seeded pair of Cabio and Celebrini, as the other semifinal pitted two all-Canadian teams against each other. Cabio and Celebrini upset the top seeds, a Swedish-Swiss pair, to set a finals clash with Malysheva and Taylor, who beat fellow Canadians Laurence Demers and Elicia Lin in the semis. 

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It was the unseeded pair of Malysheva and Taylor claiming the title with a 6-2, 6-4 win over their countrywomen. It was the first ITF title of 14-year-old Malysheva’s career. Taylor already had two, one singles and one doubles, to her name. 

Taylor walked away from Norway with a further two runnner-up trophies. She also reached the singles final in Gjovik, but lost to Michelle Khomich of Germany in straight sets. The week prior to triumphing in Gjovik, Malysheva and Taylor were defeated in the final of a tournament in Oslo. 

While Celebrini did not pick up a champion’s trophy in the last month, she had a great run in Scandinavia. She reached the semifinals in the singles of all three tournaments she played in as many weeks, a J60 in Frederiksberg, Denmark, then Oslo and Gjovik, which were also her first three events of 2023. In Gjovik, she fell to her countrywoman Taylor in the final four.

More First-Time Canadian Junior Winners 

Another all-Canadian doubles team was victorious last month. Antoine Genereux and Andy Tchinda Kepche won the J30 title in Baja California, Mexico. They did not drop a set on their way to the title and upset the top-seeded pair from the host nation in the final.  

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For both boys, it was their first ITF title. 

Zachary Plante was Canada’s lone singles winner over the last month. He won the first ITF title of his career in Addis Ababa at a J30 event. 

Despite being unseeded, Plante cruised to the title. He lost just one set in five matches, the opening set of his quarter-final against Toki Adachi of Japan in a tiebreak. The 16-year-old defeated Leander Tauber of Austria 6-1, 6-3 in an all-unseeded final. 

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The biggest final for a Canadian on the junior tour last month came in Lima, Peru, where Nadia Lagaev reached the J300 doubles final, but she and her Slovakian partner lost in a match tiebreak in the title match. 

Here is the full list of Canadians who reached finals over the last month (Titles in bold) 

  • Andrea Taylor: J60 Gjovik Doubles Champion (w/ Malysheva) and Singles Runner-Up, J60 Oslo Doubles Runner Up (w/ Malysheva) 
  • Anastasia Malysheva: J60 Gjovik Doubles Champion (w/ Taylor), J60 Oslo Doubles Runner Up (w/ Taylor) 
  • Zachary Plante: J30 Addis Ababa Singles Champion 
  • Antoine Genereux: J30 Baja California Doubles Champion (w/ Kepche) 
  • Andy Tchinda Kepche: J30 Baja California Doubles Champion (w/ Genereux)  
  • Nadia Lagaev: J300 Lima Doubles Runner-Up  
  • Andrea Cabio: J60 Gjovik Doubles Runner-Up (w/ Celebrini) 
  • Charlize Celebrini: J60 Gjovik Doubles Runner-Up (w/ Cabio)  
  • Mariya Dobreva: J60 Vegas Doubles Runner-Up 
  • Volodymr Gurenko: J60 Guatemala Doubles Runner-Up 
  • Madelynn Ludwig: J60 Zapopan Singles and Doubles Runner-Up 
  • Eric William Wang: J60 Jiujiang Doubles Runner-Up 
  • Kartick Gusain: J30 Chihuahua Doubles Runner-Up 
  • Finn Muller: J30 Chihuahua Singles Runner-Up 

Rankings Update 

Keegan Rice remains the top Canadian in the ITF Rankings at No. 49 in the world. In the last month, he reached the quarter-finals of a J300 event in Porto Alegre and the third round of a J500 in Blumenau, both in Brazil. 

He is still the lone Canadian, male or female, in the Top 100 of the ITF junior rankings. Nadia Lagaev has jumped over Naomi Xu to become the top Canadian in the girls’ rankings at No. 129 

Check out the full ITF junior rankings here