Carol reaches semis of Grade 1 tournament


Carol Lee, seen here in action during an ITF Juniors event on Saipan, made it to the semifinals of the doubles event of the Copa Mundial Campeche FMT held at the Campeche Country Club in Campeche, Mexico. (Contributed Photo)

Top CNMI junior player Carol Lee earned a Final Four spot in a high-ranking tournament in Mexico.

Lee teamed up with Ukraine’s Viktoriya Petrenko and they notched two more wins over the weekend after prevailing in the opener last Wednesday to make it to the semifinals of the Copa Mundial Campeche FMT. The pair, who topped Mexico’s Ana Paula Chavez Sanchez and Fatima Yareli Gutierrez Martinez, 6-2, 6-2, in the opener at the Campeche Country Club in Campeche, next stunned No. 5 seed Elen Louka of Cyprus and Burundi’s Sada Nahimana, 6-2, 6-4, to march into the quarterfinals of the upper half of the draw.

The unranked Lee and Petrenko then bagged their third straight victory and a semis ticket that went with it after they eliminated Americans Jenna Defalco and Madison Sieg, 6-2, 6-2. Defalco and Sieg earlier won over Mexico’s Ximena Cano and Karen Verduzco, 6-1, 6-0.

In the semis, the CNMI bet and Ukrainian were pitted against No. 3 Natsumi Kawaguchi of Japan and Adrienn Nagy of Hungary with the latter pair ending the former’s streak and finals hopes after laboring through a 6-4, 7-5 win. Kawaguchi and Nagy later fell short in their doubles title bid as they were beaten by No. 2 seed Hurricane Tyra Black of the U.S. and Selin Ovunc of Turkey, 4-6, 6-3, 10-7.

The Copa Mundial Campeche FMT was Lee’s first competition in Mexico and it was a Grade 1 event, which awarded 210 world-ranking points to the champions and 130 to the finalists. Lee and Petrenko received 75 ranking points for advancing to the semifinals.

In the singles, the winner will get 280 points. The singles finals results were unavailable as off press time last night with Black scheduled to face Latvia’s Kamilla Bartone in the title game.

Meanwhile, up next for Lee is an even higher-ranking tournament—the Mundial Juvenil Yucatan HSBC FMT.

The Mundial Juvenil is a Grade A competition that will start tomorrow and will be held at the Club Campestre de Yucatán Calle in Merida. As much as 500 and 375 rankings points can be won in the singles and doubles events, respectively, of this clay-court tournament.

Roselyn Monroyo | Reporter
Roselyn Monroyo is the sports reporter of Saipan Tribune. She has been covering sports competitions for more than two decades. She is a basketball fan and learned to write baseball and football stories when she came to Saipan in 2005.

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