Photo : Internationaux de tennis junior Banque Nationale
Canada’s big month of junior tennis came to an end last weekend with its largest ITF junior event in Repentigny and the final Fischer Outdoor Junior Nationals, the U14s.
The Internationaux Junior Banque Nationale de Repentigny, a J300 event, is the highest-tier event on the ITF junior tour held in Canada. The U14s marked the last of four national championships that have been taking place over the last few weeks.
Girl’s top seed Mingge Xu won an all-British final to claim her first title of 2023 and second overall on the ITF junior circuit. She beat countrywoman Hannah Klugman, the fifth seed, in three sets to get her hands on the trophy.
Xu had to come through three-setters in both the third round and quarter-finals before rallying from a set down in the final to score a 3-6, 6-0, 7-5 win.
The two compatriots also teamed up to win the doubles title, not dropping a set in four matches and capping off their run with a win over second seeds Mara Gae of Romania and Hayu Kinoshita of Japan.
Raphaelle Leroux was the last Canadian standing in singles, reaching the third round where she lost to Klugman. There were 18 Canadians in the 48-player draw. Five got to round two with Leroux being the only one to reach the last sixteen.
Two all-Canadian pairs reached the girls doubles quarter-finals. Catherine Gagnon and Eliana Kook lost to the eventual champions, while Leroux and Gianna Oboniye fell to third seeds Francesca Pace and Alessandra Teodosescu of Italy. There were seven all-Canadian pairs in the draw, along with two Canadians playing with international partners.
On the boy’s side, second seed Joel Schwaerzler won the title, beating 14th-seeded Australian Charlie Camus in straight sets 6-3, 6-2. Schwaerzler did not drop a set on his way to his first title of the year. The Austrian has won at least one title for three consecutive years.
Top seed Iliyan Radulov reached the semifinals but withdrew, granting Camus a walkover.
Nine Canadians were in the boys draw. Four of them got to the second round: Junghee You, Matthias Uwe Kask, Connor Church, and Mikael Arseneault, who lost to Camus.
Schwaerzler doubled-up in Repentigny as well, also claiming the doubles title alongside Frederico Bondioli of Italy. They beat the all-Italian pair of Frederico Cina and Gabriele Vulpitta 6-3, 6-2 in the final.
The Arseneault twins, Mikael and recent Fischer U18 Junior Nationals champion Nicolas, reached the quarter-finals of the doubles. There were five all-Canadian tandems as well as three other Canadians on mixed teams.
At the final Fischer Outdoor Junior Nationals event, Joshua Noah Adamson and Andrea Taylor of Ontario brought home the singles titles.
Adamson cruised through the tournament, not dropping a set in eight matches on his way to the title. He dropped two double-bagels in the group stage and upset the top two seeds in the semifinals (d. No. 1 Andy Tchinda Kepche 6-1, 6-2) and final (d. No. 2 Antoine Généreux 7-6, 6-1) to win his first Fischer Junior Nationals crown, having finished as the runner-up a year ago.
Taylor was just as dominant in her run to the girls title. She also did not drop a set, only losing four games in a set once, and had at least one bagel in six of her eight matches, including every match in the knockout stage. She capped off the run with a 6-0, 6-3 win over Charlie Gabrielle Celebrini in the final.
It is a successful title defence for Taylor, who won the U14 singles title last summer.
After losing to Adamson in the singles semis, Kepche got the job done in the double alongside Caden Edward Colburne. The Quebec-British Columbia duo were the top seeds and showed why, dropping just eight games in four matches to claim the title.
The all-Quebec pair of Émy Gauvin and Ève Thibault round out the titlists in Laval as they won the girls doubles title.
Gauvin and Thibault did not cruise like the other three champions, even needing three sets to put away second-seeds Lily Rochon and Jacey Tian in the semis, but they got the job done with a 6-4, 6-4 win over Celebrini and Amy Lu in the final.