The legendary Torneo Avvenire is one of the most important stops on the Tennis Europe Junior Tour’s 16 & Under circuit and the tournament features Slam champions such as Bjorn Borg, Goran Ivanisevic, Stefan Edberg, Martina Hingis, Jennifer Capriati and Jelena Ostapenko as former winners over its 55-year history. ‘Avvenire’ is Italian for ‘future’ and with most of this year’s leading names on the Tour in the draw alongside some lesser known players eager to make their mark, that's exactly what we got a glimpse into over the past week in Milan.
Category 1 - 16&U | 55º Torneo Avvenire | Milan, Italy
The girls’ tournament produced a re-match of the Category 1 final in Barcelona just a month ago, as top seed Lucija Ciric Bagaric (CRO) and fourth seed Sebastianna Scilipoti (SUI) advanced to face each other in the decider. This was the second time in as many weeks that the Croat had contested the final of a Category 1 tournament, having won in Foligno last week.
On her way, she twice dropped a set to unseeded home players; against Anastasia Abbagnato in round one and Giulia Martinelli in the semi-final. As further evidence of just how well the Italians play at home, wildcard recipient Emma Rizzetto took out the second seed Katerina Dimitrova (BUL) in the first round. Scilipoti had come through her own battle against an unseeded local in Round 3 in the form of Chiara Fornasieri and followed up that win with a tough battle in the semi-final where she defeated another Croatian, Sara Svetac, the tenth seed.
The stage was set for a blockbuster final, with the second and third ranked players in the Race to the Junior Masters ready for battle. Scilipoti – the first seeded player the Croatian had faced in Milan - came out with all guns blazing in the opening set of the decider, shutting out Ciric Bagaric to love. A second set comeback was not enough to deny the Swiss player as she took the match 6-0 4-6 6-2 to claim a fourth title of the year from five appearances on the Tennis Europe Junior Tour.
The boys’ draw produced a few surprises. Top seeded Hungarian Petar Kalocsai breezed through the early rounds but was upset in the semi-finals by unseeded local Gabriele Piraino, who was on form in Milan, also reaching the doubles final. Piraino scored a string of upsets, defeating eighth seed Filip Pieczonka (POL) in his opening match, and dropping just one set on his way to a first singles final of the year.
Second seed Niccolo Dessi (ITA) made his exit in the first round at the hands of Danilo Raicevic (MNE). Niccolo Ciavarella (ITA) took advantage of this opening, and after a tough three-set semi-final win over Gonzalo Bueno of Peru, another unseeded Italian had made his way to the final - his second of 2019. He was to face Piraino, who had beaten him in a final set tie break in their only other Tour meeting, but the excitement of an all-Italian final for the home crowd gave way to a subdued ending as Piraino eased to a 6-2 6-2 win to claim the biggest title of his junior career so far.
Boys’ doubles winners: Gonzalo Bueno (PER) & Adolfo Daniel Vallejo (PAR)
Girls’ doubles winners: Leyla Fiorella Britez Risso (PAR) & Paulina Franco Martinessi (PAR)
Category 2 - Riga Open | Riga, Latvia
16 & Under
Maryia Stsetsevich (BLR) scored a double win in Riga by claiming the singles as well as the doubles titles. She defeated Lithuanian Patricija Paukstyte 6-2 6-2 in the girls’ singles final for her second title of the year. In an all-Lithuanian boys’ singles final, Ainius Sabaliauskas got the better of his doubles partner Vilius Gaubas, digging deep for a 2-6 7-6(4) 6-1 comeback win, also scoring his second singles trophy of 2019.
Boys’ doubles winners: Edas Butvilas (LTU) & Pijus Vaitiekunas (LTU)
Girls’ doubles winners: Maryia Stsetsevich (BLR) & Hanna Tsitavets (BLR)
14 & Under
Tikhon Federov (BLR) won his first title from two finals appearances this year by outplaying Oliver Ojakaar (EST) 6-2 7-5 in the boy’s final, while Carolin Raschdorf (GER) defeated Polina Skopintseva (RUS) 7-5 6-0 in the girls’ final for her first win of the year.
Boys’ doubles winners: Oliver Byskata (FIN) & Oliver Ojakaar (EST)
Girls’ doubles winners: Grete Gull (EST) & Brit Martin (EST)
14&U | Chernitskaya Memorial | Kharkiv Ukraine
After finishing as a finalist in Antalya in the spring, Dana Baidaulet of Kazakhstan has won her first title of the year, overcoming Ukraine’s Yeseniia Ovcharova in the girls’ final. In-form Slovakian David Schwarc defeated Walker Allen (USA) to add to his Category 3 win at the Hungarian Open two weeks ago.
Boys’ doubles winners: Mikalai Bankou (BLR) & Andrri Zimnokh (UKR)
Girls’ doubles winners: Anastasiia Firman (UKR) & Anna Vashchenko (UKR)
For full results, scores and more from all the above tournaments, as well as other events from Week 24 , click here.
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