Masiianskaia and Maksimovic carry momentum through to glory in Tennis Europe U16 Masters
Russia’s Masiianskaia and Bosnia’s Marko Maksimovic won the U16 Tennis Europe Masters in Monte-Carlo
The first mechanically dismissed the No 4, No 2 and No 3 seeds from the draw. The second had the same trifecta in a different order with numbers 2, 3 and 4 beaten in a row. The result was the same: Mariia Masiianskaia of Russia and Marko Maksimovic of Bosnia and Herzegovina won the Tennis Europe Masters under-16 event on Friday, despite not being the most successful or consistent players this season. Both dropped just one set in three days in the semi-finals at the Monte Carlo Country Club courts.
MAKSIMOVIC UNINVESTED SINCE APRIL
For Maksimovic, in the boys’ event, the title win is only a half-surprise as the Bosnian has had such a strong second half of the season on the Tennis Europe U16 circuit. His final against Slovakia’s Michal Krajci (7-5, 6-3) was his 17th consecutive individual victory. The winner of the Sarajevo Tier 1 in August has not lost since April in individual Tennis Europe competitions.
With the tension of a final on the Monte Carlo Country Club’s main court, Maksimovic and Krajci’s level of play was less impressive than the day before. But Maksimovic, who is a year ahead of his time (he was born in 2006), feels confident enough to set out to tackle the pro circuit and Futures tournaments, where he has already scored his first points this year (he is 2184th in the world on the ATP!)
MASIIANSKAIA SURCLASSÉ DE DEUX SAISONS
In the girls’ event, Masiianskaia was stronger than Slovakia’s Karolina Krajmer in the decisive moments of the final as she won it 6-4, 7-6. Masiianskaia, who had never been in the Top 10 this season in the Tennis Europe rankings, had also won the Tier 1 event in Sarajevo. She was upgraded by two years to the U16s (she was born in 2007) and then totally missed out on the Petits As in Tarbes, her last appearance in the U14s, but seems to have come to terms with that setback.
Even though three quarters of the delegation left Monte Carlo before the closing ceremony, Russia confirmed that it is the most active nation in the youth categories of European tennis. They were the only nation with representatives in all four U14 and U16 draws, eight players in total. And Ksenia Efremova, just 12 years old but with 17 match wins (including a title) in five tournaments, is coming up fast…