LAUNCESTON, AUSTRALIA: This tournament, now in its third year on the ITF Pro Circuit calendar and first as a $50,000 tournament, has reached the semifinal stage.
Still on the title trail in the singles event are three players from the Asia/Oceania region; Australia’s very own Olivia Rogowska, who, at three, is the highest seed left in the draw, and Japanese duo Erika Sema and Eri Hozumi, seeded fourth and fifth respectively.
Looking to upset the odds is the last surviving European player, Irena Pavlovic of France who, along with Rogowska, is yet to drop a set this week.
Friday’s order of play will start with the two singles semifinals. Taking to the court first will be Hozumi and Rogowska with Sema and Pavlovic following.
As in the singles event, the doubles semifinal also has a lone European player in action. Zuzana Zlochova of Slovakia and her Thai partner Kamonwan Buayam are one of three unseeded teams who will fight it out with the Australian top seeds Monique Adamczak and Olivia Rogowska for the title.
Completing the semifinal line-up are Sisters Erika and Yurika Sema, who will face the number one seeds next, and Miharu Imanishi and Viktoria Rajicic who recovered from losing the opening set of their quarterfinal 61 to reach Friday’s semifinal.
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Previous title winners in Launceston
2012 – $25,000
(5) Yulia Putintseva (RUS) d. (Q) Lesley Kerkhove (NED) : 61 63
Shuko Aoyama & Kotomi Takahata (JPN) d. Shu-Ying Hsieh (TPE) & Saisai Zheng (CHN) : 64 64
2013 - $25,000
(Q) Storm Sanders (AUS) d. Shuko Aoyama (JPN) : 64 64
(3) Ksenia Lykina (RUS) & Emily Webley-Smith (GBR) d. Allie Kiick (USA) & Erin Routliffe (CAN) 75 63