Two big tournaments await Pacific Games gold medalist Carol Lee as she resumes her training at the International Tennis Federation’s facility in Fiji.
Lee, who won the mixed doubles event (with Colin Sinclair) in the XVI Pacific Games in Samoa last week, will be competing in the Oceania Closed Junior Championships in Fiji and in the Australian Winter International in New South Wales. The Oceania Closed will take place in Lautoka from August 12 to 16, while the Australian Winter is set from Aug. 21 to 25. The two are Grade B2 tournaments—the fifth highest in the Junior ITF World Tour progression behind the Grand Slam/Youth Olympics, Junior Masters, Grade A, and Grade 1/B1. Both events award 160 world-ranking points to the singles champion and 120 to the doubles winners.
“I am training for B2 in Fiji in two weeks and getting ready to defend my singles title. Then, I will be heading out to Australia,” said Lee, who played in Samoa for nearly two weeks before going to Fiji for her training sessions at the regional facility.
The CNMI player ruled last year’s Oceania Closed after beating Australia’s Amber Marshall in the finals, 6-1, 6-4. The victory moved her to the Top 200 in the world rankings. The 17-year-old is now ranked No. 116 in the world, but made it as high as No. 114 in March this year after winning a Grade 3 tournament in Casablanca, Morocco.
After her three competitions in the African nation, Lee joined tournaments in Italy and Belgium for about two months and then returned to Fiji late June for her final preparations for the Pacific Games. The last time she played in Fiji, she won both the singles and doubles titles of a Grade 4 tournament—the South Pacific Open Junior Championships.
Lee also played in the Australian Winter International last year and this time, she is hoping for a better finish after just making it to the Round of 32 in the singles and losing in the first round of the doubles.
This will be Lee’s last year in the Junior ITF World Tour and she wants to capitalize on every opportunity presented to her.