Some fine moments of Tennis in Auckland
Auckland, January 11, 2018
German Julia Goerges won the Women’s ASB Classic 2018 in Auckland.
The World No 14 Goerges defeated the top seed and World No 2 Danish Caroline Wozniacki in straight sets 6-4 7-6 in the finals.
She was in solid form throughout the event. A convincing win over Olympic Gold Medallist Monica Puig in the first round set the tempo for her first title win at Auckland in eight attempts.
Wozniacki, after losing her second finals at Stanley Street, holds the unfortunate record of being the most successful player to have never won a title in Auckland. The former World No 1 has won 15 matches in Auckland and was the biggest draw for this year’s event.
Europe Vs Japan
Italian Sarra Errani partnered Dutch B Schoofs to win the Ladies Doubles title.
They upset the top seeded Japanese pair E Hozumi and M Kato 7-5 6-1 in the finals.
Errani, a five-time Doubles Grand Slam winner, was a last-minute addition to the event.
Kiwi tennis players were a disappointment at the event. Wild Card Jade Lewis showed glimpses of her potential before going down 4-6, 3-6 to Slovakian qualifier Viktoria Kuzmova in a first-round match. Jade comes from an illustrious Tennis family. Her father and uncles all represented New Zealand on the international stage. Jade’s Uncle Chris, is the only New Zealander to reach the Wimbledon finals. The New Zealand pair of Paige Hourigan and Erin Routliffe lost in the first round of doubles.
Prarthana debuts in Auckland
Indian Prarthana Thombare made her maiden appearance in Auckland.
The 23-year-old native of Solapur made it to the quarterfinals of the Doubles event. Prarthana is an Asian Games Bronze Medalist, and is one of the most promising tennis players to have come out of India in recent times.
ASB Classic was severly disrupted by rain, with two days washed out.
Finals had to be pushed over by a day because of the inclement weather.
This was severe disappointment for the players and spectators alike.
There is an urgent need for the Tennis centre to have a retractable roof over its centre court. The project will cost close to $20 million, and plans are afoot to have the roof in place by 2021.
The footfalls at the event have increased by more than 70% in the past five years.
This also means the stands in the centre court need to be demolished and rebuilt to accommodate more fans.
ASB Classic is the feather in the cap for New Zealand Tennis.
The $250,000 event is consistently rated the best in the world in its category, and continues to draw big names to our shores.
Attention of tennis fans will now shift across the ditch for the first Grand Slam of the year –Australian Open.
Picture of Julia Goerges with her Trophy (Source: Facebook)