The UK Pro League returned after a break for the fifth week of elite tennis competition with seven days of action. Sonay Kartal and Charles Broom were crowned the winners at the Aldershot Tennis club.
The innovative season-long competition consists of 10 weeks of qualifying rounds, where players compete for league points in the hope of qualifying for the finals week.
The two finals of week 5 saw two new winners crowned. Sonay Kartal beat league leader Emily Appleton in the final of the women’s competition. Appleton has featured in the final of all five weeks of the UKPL this year and was a favourite to extend her lead at the top of the table. A comprehensive performance earned the Kartal a 6-4, 6-4 win over her fellow 19-year-old. It was her first action since returning from a layoff due to injury and she impressed all week. Her league ranking has been boosted by the 18 points earned in week 5 have seen her shoot up the table to fifth place.
After her win in the final Sonay Kartal said:
“I think that from having three months out, I’m very pleased to come here and win four matches,”
“I went out in front in both sets and she almost came back. I dipped slightly at times, but on the big points I managed to keep my concentration high.”
On the men’s side of the draw it was two first-time finalists in Julian Cash and Charles Broom. Cash was the highest ranked player in the men’s draw but failed to win his first week as Broom won a thriller. In a third set tiebreak, Broom saved to match points to give the 23-year-old a 7-4(4), 4-6, 12-10 win.
“Those last five, ten points were really high level from both of us. He played really well and I think I’m very lucky just to have got through. It was a really high level match all around and I’m just thankful,” he said
“It’s been a really good week all around. Obviously reaching the final is great, I think I played a really good tiebreak, but throughout the week I felt like my level was getting better and better.
“I’m really happy with how everything progressed and I’m just looking to carry it on into the next few weeks when I’m playing tournaments.”
Outside of the final two debutants in the women’s draw stood out. 16-year-old Jasmine Conway had a great week with a win over second placed Eliz Maloney impressing. The teenager showed composure throughout the week to gain her first five UKPL ranking points. Fellow debutant Grace Piper also impressed, reaching the semi-finals in her first week, only losing out to eventual winner Sonay Kartal. The 12 points she earned have put her up to 12th place after only one week of playing. The 18-year-old looked at home against some really tough opponents throughout her run to finish in third place.
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