British teenagers star in first round at Tarka

PUBLISHED: 09:56 04 September 2014 | UPDATED: 09:56 04 September 2014

Tennis

Tennis

Archant

Wednesday’s AEGON GB Pro-series Barnstaple tennis action

British teenagers Katy Dunne and Jodie Burrage stole the show on day one of main draw at Barnstaple on Wednesday.

19-year-old Dunne, from Hemel Hempstead, opened proceedings on court two against top seed and former world number 29, Sofia Arvidsson at a blistering pace. The first set flew by as Dunne’s aggressive attacking play swept aside the Swedish number two 6-0.

While the Swede came back into the contest in the second set, Dunne - who has climbed 600 places in the rankings over the past 12 months - didn’t waiver with her attacking play, to close out for one of her best career wins to date.

Speaking after the match Dunne said: “There were no nerves as she was the top seed, and I went out with the intent to be aggressive.

“I played great in the first set, and although she got more into the second, I stayed with it.

“On a hard court this is one of my biggest wins to date. I have previously done well here at Tarka, and the courts seem to suit my game.”

Looking ahead to her next opponent, Klaartje Liebens of Belguim, Dunne said: “I’ve played her quite a few times, as we are the same age and came up together through the juniors. It will be an interesting match.”

Having looked impressive in qualifying, 15 year old Jodie Burrage is the youngest player in main draw, and despite trailing 1-6, 3-5 to Francesca Stephenson on Wednesday, Burrage stayed calm to turn the match around to serve out for her first main draw win at this level 1-6, 7-5, 6-4.

Burrage, who had a lot of local support including her grandma who lives in the town, said: “I didn’t get off to the best of starts, but my opponent played well.

“Even when trailing 3-5 in the second, I kept telling myself to keep going.”

Burrage, who is still juggling school with tennis, now plays seventh seed Diana Marcinkevica from Latvia for a place in the last eight.

Elsewhere on day one, seven of the eight seeds made it through to the second round, with Indy De Vroome and Naomi Cavaday playing a particularly high quality match, which fourth seed De Vroome won 6-4, 6-2.

Despite losing to Hungarian Szabina Szlavikovics, 20-year-old Charlotte Pearce having qualified for her third consecutive pro main event, has now achieved her first world ranking.

Play starts on Thursday at 11.00am, with a stand being erected overnight for spectators.

For ticket information contact www.tarkatennis.net.

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