Ace display seals major junior title for Perse tennis player
Jonny Cross (Year 9) proved to be a big hitter at the Liverpool Junior International tennis tournament.
He won the boys’ U14 doubles event with partner Denis Ivanov without dropping a set, as well as reaching the final in the boys’ U14 singles at the competition, which is part of the prestigious Tennis Europe Junior Tour.
In the doubles, Jonny and Denis beat Aaron Gabet of France and Bulgaria’s Petar Ivanchev 7-5, 6-4 in the opening round before defeating compatriots Kouros Anssarizadeh and Harry Senior 6-2, 6-2 in the quarter-finals.
They followed it up with a 6-2, 6-4 win over Felix Bockelmann Evans and Cassius David Haye in the last four before taking the title with a 6-2, 6-1 victory against Liam Channon and Lithuania’s Ignas Grusnius in the final.
Meanwhile, the singles saw Jonny edge out Lawrie Wilkin 6-3, 4-6, 7-6 in the first round and Casey Drake 6-2, 6-1 in the second round.
A 6-4, 6-2 success against Hugo Dunn and a 6-2, 7-5 win over Kouros Anssarizadeh followed in the quarter and semi-finals respectively, only for Jonny to lose 6-4, 7-5 to Alexander Winder in the final.
Jonny was delighted to have performed so well during an intense week of competition featuring many top young players from home and abroad.
He said: “I knew it would be a hard competition because it was very similar to the national championships standard. There were a lot of players I knew were tough competitors.
“I expected to get to the round of 16 or maybe the quarters, so I was really happy to do so well.
“It was great, especially with the doubles, where we had quite comfortable wins, but in the singles, apart from the final, my hardest match was actually in the first round.
“I was just really pleased with how I played. It gets tougher as you go up the line, so you have to keep playing better and better as you progress.”
Jonny, who started playing tennis aged just three, trained for up to two hours a day, six days a week going into the Liverpool tournament to ensure he was in peak condition.
He said: “This is probably one of my best results after coming second in the nationals a few years ago. It has been really good for my confidence.”
Jonny eventually hopes to turn professional and follow in the footsteps of his favourite players Roger Federer and Gael Monfils, adding: “I’m aiming to get into the top 100 in the world and maybe play a Grand Slam.”