Photo: ITFBoys' doubles champions Alfie Hewett (GBR) and Chris Herman (USA)
The ITF has announced the eight male and four female players who have qualified for the Cruyff Foundation Junior Masters 2014. Eight countries will be represented at this year’s tournament which will take place on 23-26 January, alongside “les Petits As” in Tarbes, France.
The top seven boys and three girls on the 28 October ranking, who were born in 1996 or later, received direct acceptance into the event. Two wildcards, one for the boys event and one for the girls, were also awarded. The event will feature a singles and doubles competition.
Leading the line up in the boys' event is current boys' world No. 1 Alfie Hewett from Great Britain, who will be looking to add this year’s title to his two previous wins here. Amongst Hewett’s rivals is last year’s finalist and world No. 2 Carlos Anker (NED). Also returning to the tournament for a second time are Nico Langmann (AUT), Thato Tsomole (RSA) and Martin de la Puenta (ESP), all of whom are in the top 5 in the world in the boys rankings.
Chris Herman (USA) will also be returning after being awarded the boys' wild card. Herman and Hewett paired up to win the doubles title at last year’s event. Two boys will be making their debut in the tournament this year - Felix Garcia Perez (ESP), who was part of the Spanish team that were runner’s up to Great Britain this year in the junior event at the BNP Paribas World Team Cup, and Sean de Hilster (RSA).
Girls' defending champion Diede de Groot (NED) will also be returning to the event but faces competition from current world No. 3 Mariska Venter (RSA), who participated last year. Viktoria Lvova (RUS) will be competing for the first time in the girls' event along with girls' wildcard Lizbeth Soto Rivera (MEX), who is the first player from Mexico to feature in the event.
The tournament will be preceded by a three-day high performance training camp, ensuring athletes are well prepared for the event.
1. Mariska VENTER (RSA) (2)
2. Diede de GROOT (NED) (4)
3. Viktoria LVOVA (RUS) (5)
4. Lizbeth Alondra SOTO RIVERA (MEX) (8) WC
1. Alfie HEWETT (GBR) (1)
2. Carlos ANKER (NED) (2)
3. Thato TSOMOLE (RSA) (3)
4. Nico LANGMANN (AUT) (4)
5. Martin de la PUENTA (ESP) (5)
6. Felix GARCIA PEREZ (ESP) (8)
7. Sean Liam de HILSTER RSA (9)
8. Chris HERMAN (USA)(15) WC