Tennis-University News – 1st week of March
One newcomer, three routiniers, one qualification
Last weekend featured 5 TU Players in Davis Cup matches for their respective countries. The tie between Latvia and Egypt was a particularly interesting one where TU feature players, Karlis Ozolins (LAT) and Karim Maamoun (EGY) were pitted against each other in a fascinating encounter.
For Karim and his past experience in this event he already knew what to expect. Karlis, however had the first time honors of playing Davis Cup for Latvia, adding an additional highlight for the start of his year. His standout performances include reaching the Australian Open Jrs semi final in singles/final in doubles, while also reaching his first ITF Futures final to boot.
Ozolins was drawn against Mohamed Safwat, which proved to be a tough test for the first time campaigner. After being up a break in a close first set, Karlis was unfortunate to have been broken back to then losing out 9:11 in the tie break. The second set also went to the wire, where Safwat broke Karlis at 5:6 to seal the match.
Karim Maamoun held chances to give the Egyptians a commanding 2:0 lead, but was defeated by top ATP player Ernest Gulbis in straight sets.The following day, the two TU players faced off in match number 3. With a strong pair with huge serving, Ozolins and Gulbis gave Latvia a 2-1 lead into the remaining matches which were spearheaded by Gulbis and Strombachs each taking their matches to give the Latvians the win. 4 matches to 1. Along with their Egyptian and Latvian counterparts, 3 other TU players also took part in Davis Cup action.
Seasoned representative Ruben Bemelmans had some stand out performances for his nation of Belgium but were taken out in a tight encounter with Hungary 2:3 matches to decide the tie. In his opening tie, Ruben took out in form top 100 player Atilla Balazs in 3 sets, to then go down after a hard fought 3 set loss against Martin Fucsovics.
Former Jr World #1, and multiple jr Grandslam champion Jonas Forejtek represented the Czech Republic team and played part to 3-1 Victory against Slovakia to move to the finals in Madrid.
Prajnesh Gunneswaran was also in action with the Indian team, but had a difficult task against former champions Croatia. They fell 3-1 in their overall result.
HOME SWEET HOME
Led by the Captain of our ship, Alexander Waske led an entourage of players through intensive preparation before heading to the Grade 2 ITF in the Dominican Republic. Geni Inoue, Taym Alazmeh, Izabelle Persson, Anastasia Rakita and Stefan Popovic represent our ITF team while also being joined by Coach Vincent Van den Honert.
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