Photo: Hiromasa ManoEmily Appleton (GBR)
American Hailey Baptiste made the first noise in the girls’ draw at the Campeonato Internacional Juvenil De Tenis De Porto Alegre by upsetting third seed Emily Appleton 75 61 to reach the quarterfinals on Thursday.
The 14th-seed, Baptiste, a 15-year-old making her Porto Alegre debut, was the first player to reach the final eight on a day that again saw rain.
Baptiste has become a fan favorite, and many in the crowd have taken to calling her “Sereninha,” which translates to “little Serena,” in reference to world No. 1 Serena Williams.
Appleton often relies on her forehand, but Baptiste blunted the weapon during the match.
“She has a really strong forehand, so I had to rely on serving really well and attacking her,” said Baptiste, of her winning strategy.
Baptiste will take on fellow American Elysia Bolton in the quarterfinals.
Top seed Amanda Anisimova of USA, who was last year’s Porto Alegre runner-up to fellow American Usue Maitane Arconada, had another successful day on court despite the hot weather. Anisimova ousted 15th seed Anastasia Iamachkine of Peru 60 63.
“Even under these tough conditions I just came in and tried to impose my game,” Anisimova said. “She played really well, but I tried to play more aggressively and I guess she didn’t like it.”
Anisimova will play Sofia Munera Sanchez of Colombia in the quarterfinals.
Second seed Amina Anshba of Russia needed nearly three hours to get through a 63 26 62 win over Lulu Radovcic of Switzerland under a broiling sun.
“I played really well in the first set,” Anshba said. “I was hitting the ball really hard, but then I came back too relaxed for the second one and lost my concentration, so I had to work really hard mentally and physically to be able to come back in third set and secure the win.”
Anshba faces seventh seed Sofia Sewing of USA in the quarterfinals.
The other girls’ quarterfinals will be contested by sixth seed Maria Camila Osorio Serrano of Colombia and Anhzelika Isaeva of Russia.
Half of the boys’ quarterfinalists are seeded Americans with third seed Vasil Kirkov, seventh seed Oliver Crawford, eighth seed Trent Bryde, and 11th seed Gianni Ross still in the hunt for the Porto Alegre title.
Kirkov, who defeated Alex Geller of Argentina 76(1) 16 76(5), will play Ross in the quarterfinals. Ross earned his quarterfinal slot with a 76(0) 62 third round win over fifth seed Sebastian Baez of Argentina.
Crawford never lost a game in taking out ninth seed Francisco Vittar of Argentina 60 60, and will play second seed Yuta Shimizu of Japan in the quarters.
Bryde, who defeated Okukayode Ayeni of the USA 64 63, will take on Brazil’s Matheus Pucinelli de Almeida in the next round.
Also joining Pucinelli in the final eight is fellow Brazilian and wildcard recipient Gilbert Soares Klier Junior, who will square off against Juan Pablo Mazzuchi of Argentina.