Alexandra PISCO reached the second round in juniorsPhoto: Carlos FERREIRA
STAG 2017 European Youth Championships
Favorites easily prevailed in their opening matches at the Round of 128 in Junior Girls Singles Event at the STAG 2017 European Youth Championships. However few matches went full distance, as a warm up for fierce battles we are about to see in following days.
DENG Simeng, the member of the Azerbaijan’s bronze medal winning team, was stretched to full distance in the duel against Maja GJELLE of Norway (-5, -5, 7, 8, -9, 8, 4) . Yoeke GUNSING of Netherlands also forced Morgane GUIDON of Belgium to full seven games (-7, -10, 5, -9, 6, 7, 3). Hungarian Orsolya FEHER put Romania’s Mihaela PLEASU on test before she lost (-16, 8, -6, 10, 9, -10, 9).
For Andrea PAVLOVIC of Croatia it was an easy day. She overcame Emilia MANUKYAN of Italy (8, 4, 6, -10, 6).
“Last year I reached second Round too and I hope in Portugal I will progress further. I did not expect any difficulties in the match against MANUKYAN, it was only important to stay focused,” said PAVLOVIC.
Portugal’s Alexandra PISCO beat Nazakat GARAYEVA of Azerbaijan 4:2 (-8, -10, 7 12, 6, 6).
“I was two games null in reverse because my adversary had more aggressive approach. I was serving long balls and allowed GARAYEVA to attack me. After second game I talked with my coach, we changed the tactics. I started to service short balls and opened more angles. I blocked her game, “ said PISCO.
Europe’s cadet no. 27 Maelys DAHY of Belgium suffered by the hands of Europe’s no. 46 Ioana SINGEORZAN of Romania (-7, 9, 8, -9, 8, 3); Valentina RONCALLO of Italy beat no. 33 Vitalina BRINZA of Moldova in straight games (6, 7, 2, 6), whilst Ivet ILIEVA of Bulgaria prevailed against no. 32 Anna MIKLUKHA of Ukraine (9, -9, -6, 8, 1, -9, 7).
Patricia SANTOS of Portugal beat Vasiliki ILIOPOULOU of Greece in straight games to move to the second round (5, 5, 6, 4).
“I succeeded for a first time the first round of the European Youth Championships. Last year I also played. It is nice feeling to beat someone in straight games. I used a lot of variation of my service and managed to put a lot of balls on table. It is good to win here in Portugal,” said SANTOS.
Top seeds in Junior Girls Doubles Event Adina DIACONU and Andreea DRAGOMAN of Romania overcame Marina ÑIGUEZ and Alba FERNANDEZ of Spain in first round (6, -10, 8, 9). In the lower half of the draw no. two seeds Mariia TAILAKOVA of Russia and Kristina KAZANTSEVA of Russia are out. Mihaela PLEASY of Romania and Simay KULAKCEKEN of Turkey beat them in four games (9, 9, -9, 3).