MONTJANE PUMPED TO FACE KAMIJI AT GAUTENG OPEN
South Africa’s Kgothatso ‘KG’ Montjane cruised into the women’s singles quarter-finals in the Gauteng Open as world number four Joachim Gerard crushed South Africa’s remaining hope in the men’s singles in Benoni on Thursday.
Montjane allowed herself a small smile after she ousted Lola Ochoa from Spain 6-2 6-1 at the Gauteng East Tennis Complex.
“It’s only the first match, but a win is something to build on,” said the world number eight.
“Lola is a former top 10 player, so I didn’t take anything for granted. Playing her definitely helped me to raise my game. It felt really good to hit some winners and I’m ready for the quarters.”
Montjane will face Yui Kamiji, who was in commanding form against South Africa’s Mariska Venter.
The world number two from Japan didn’t drop a single point in her debut on South African soil and marched to a clean sweep in the Level 1 International Tennis Federation (ITF) tournament, sponsored by the Airports Company South Africa.
Kamiji leads Montjane 8 – 4 in previous encounters, but the South African came up trumps in their most recent tussle - the quarter-finals at the Melbourne Open.
“I feel up to the task,” said the 29-year-old from Limpopo. “It will be a tough match with long rallies and big shots, but I’ll take it game for game. I put too much pressure on myself in the past to win at home and it worked against me.
“My approach this year is different and this week is all about working on my game. I’ll be happy if I win, but if I don’t I can live with the loss. My focus is to peak for the Paralympics, so win or lose, I’m dialling down the expectations.”
World number one Jiske Griffioen dispatched Russia’s Ludmilla Bubnova 6-2 6-2 and the Dutch player will face world number seven Lucy Shuker from Great Britain.
Compatriots Majolein Buis – the defending champion – and Aniek van Koot also advanced.
Buis beat Angelica Bernal from Colombia 6-3 4-6 6-0, while world number three Van Koot lost the first set against Charlotte Famin 4-6, but won the next two to take the match 7-6(3) and 7-6 (3).
World number one Stephane Houdet won 6-1 6-1 to advance to the men’s singles quarter-finals and defending champion Gerard also moved another step closer to the final after he slayed South Africa’s Leon Els 6-1 6-0.
The world number four will meet Daniel Rodrigues from Brazil, who claimed the first big scalp in the UNIQLO Wheelchair Tennis Tour event when he beat seventh seed Takuya Miki from Japan 6-2 4-6 6-3.
Alfie Hewett from Great Britain provided the second shockwave when he defeated the man who ended Evans Maripa’s campaign. Hewett handed fourth seed Stefan Olsson a 6-4 6-2 drubbing to book his spot in the quarter-finals against eighth seed Frederic Cattaneo.
WOMEN AND MEN’S SINGLES RESULTS:
RSA unless stated
1-Jiske Griffioen (NED) bt Ludmila Bubnova (RUS) 6-2 6-2
2-Yui Kamiji (JPN) bt Mariska Venter 6-0 6-0
3-Aniek Van Koot (NED) bt Charlotte Famin (FRA) 4-6 7-6(3) 7-6(3)
4-Sabine Ellerbrock (GER) bt Lucyna Meitrkiewicz (POL) 6-0 6-0
5-Marjolein Buis (NED) bt Angelica Berna l(COL) 6-3 4-6 6-0
6-Lucy Shuker (GBR) bt Dana Mathewson (USA) 6-2 6-1
7-Kgothatso Montjane bt Lola Ochoa (ESP) 6-2 6-1
8-Katharina Kruger (GER) bt Francisca Mardones (CHI) 2-6 6-2 6-4
1-Stephane Houdet (FRA) bt Ricky Molier (NED) 6-1 6-1
2-Nicolas Peifer (FRA) bt Donald Ramphadi w/o
3-Joachim Gerard (BEL) bt Leon Els 6-1 6-0
5-Takashi Sanada (JPN) bt Thato Tsomole 6-2 6-2
6-Adam Kellerman (AUS) bt Mzwanele Thentsi 6-0 6-1
8-Frederic Cattaneo (FRA) bt Boukartacha Lhaj (MAR) 6-2 6-2
Alfie Hewett (GBR) bt 4-Stefan Olsson (SWE) 6-4 6-2
Daniel Rodrigues (BRA) bt 7-Takuya Miki (JPN) 6-2 4-6 6-3
Wheelchair Tennis South Africa and Airports Company South Africa Partnership:
The Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) is the official sponsor of Wheelchair Tennis South Africa and the sport of wheelchair tennis. Airports Company South Africa has contributed no less than R36-million to date and has committed to a continued investment in the sport as its flagship Corporate Social Investment programme.