Cayman’s junior tennis players match up well in Jamaica

| 17/07/2017
CNS Local Life

(L-R) Oskar Bjuro and Alex Claybourn came away winners in their respective age groups

(CNS Local Life): Seven of Cayman’s top junior tennis players recently competed in two regional tournament in Kingston, Jamaica, with four boys taking home trophies, including two who won their age group. All together, almost 70 young players from Cayman, Jamaica, Guyana, the UK, St Vincent and Antigua competed at the Blue Mountain Caribbean Open, and more than 100 juniors from all over the world took part in the ITF/COTECC competition.

The juniors from Cayman, who have all played and trained at the Cayman Islands Tennis Club under the coaching of Dale Avery and Rob Seward, were Jack Lomax, Oskar Bjuro and Sebastian Bjuro (12 and under); Harrison Clough, Alex Claybourn, Jake Booker, the Bjuro brothers, and Lomax (14 and under); and Callum Theaker (18 and under), who just represented Cayman in the NatWest Small Island Games.

For the past six years, Seward has taken Cayman’s top juniors to participate in the two tournaments.

At Blue Mountain, it was an all-Cayman final in the boys 12 and under, with Oskar Bjuro defeating Lomax 6-2, 6-3. This was the second year in a row where Cayman has dominated this division; at the 2016 tournament, Lomax defeated Bjuro in the finals.

In the 14-and-under division, three Caymanian players advanced to the semifinals; Claybourn defeated Booker in two sets but Clough was forced to retire due to injury against Keyondre Clarke. Claybourn bested Clarke in a three-set final, 3-6, 6-0, 10-4, to win the division.

Theaker, who arrived from the Small Island Games at the start of the tournament, reached the semifinals of the 18-and-under division where he faced a strong player from the UK, Zachary Phillips, eventually losing 7-5, 7-6.

Three of Cayman’s juniors stayed on in Jamaica to participate in the ITF/COTECC events the following week. Theaker took part in the boys 18-and-under ITF tournament. This time Theaker got the best of Phillips, beating him in the first round, 4-6, 6-3, 6-2,, reversing the result of their previous match. He then went on to win his second-round match against Alex Rose of Jamaica, 6-1, 6-1, but eventually lost to the number 1 seed.

Lomax and Booker also stayed to participate in the COTECC under 14 division. Both juniors had a tough qualifying round so although they did not get to the main draw they still gained experience in the consolation division. The two both lost in the semifinals of the consolation round in matches that could have gone either way. They also teamed up in the doubles, losing in the semifinals of the main draw against the number 1 seeds.

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Category: Sports, Tennis

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