Photo : Martin Sidorjak
Sobeys Stadium in Toronto played host to a $25,000 ITF women’s event last week featuring several top 250 players on the WTA rankings and in the end, the tournament crowned a Canadian champion.
Toronto’s own Katherine Sebov, seeded second in the singles draw, lifted the trophy after defeating fifth-seeded Himeno Sakatsume of Japan 6-4, 7-6(4) in Sunday’s final. Before that, the 24-year-old Canadian had to come through a third set tiebreak to top Gabriela Andrea Knutson 6-4, 3-6, 7-6(2) in the semifinals. It was the only match she played in the event where she dropped a set.
The victory is Sebov’s first title of the season and the third ITF crown of her career. Last year, she won the $25,000 tournament in Tauranga, New Zealand and in 2018, she took home her biggest title, on Canadian soil in Saguenay. Her strong start to 2023 continues after she qualified for her first Grand Slam main draw at the Australian Open in January.
Sebov wasn’t the only Canadian to post a notable result in Toronto. Kayla Cross, 17, received a wild card to compete in the main draw and made the most of her opportunity to advance to the quarter-finals where she fell 6-0, 1-6, 7-6(5) to sixth-seeded American Taylor Ng.
In doubles, the top-seeded duo of Norway’s Ulrikke Eikeri and Hungary’s Fanny Stollar lifted the trophy thanks to a 7-6(6), 6-0 triumph over the American team of Maya Joint and Mia Yamakita in the championship match.
The women’s ITF Pro Circuit now moves east to Fredericton, New Brunswick where the $25,000 Graystone ITF Challenger Driven by Volvo will be staged this week. A handful of Canadians will be in the draw, including Victoria Mboko who will be playing her first tournament since reaching the semifinals at the U.S. Open Junior Championships last September.