The CNMI’s Colin Sinclair has repaid the Grand Slam Development Fund’s faith in him early after clinching the singles championship in the $15,000 Claremont Club Pro Classic in California.
Sinclair ruled the 32-player field, besting pros from the U.S., China, Brazil, Japan, Ireland, Canada, Dominican Republic, Greece, France, Mexico, and Sweden to win his first ITF World Tennis Tour title. The 24-year-old secured the win following a 6-3, 7-6 victory over Frenchman Lucas Poullain in the finals last Sunday and his triumph came just a few months after the former Aces Tennis Academy standout received the 2019 International Player Grand Slam Grant.
Sinclair was one of the only two Pacific Oceania players (the other one was Papua New Guinea’s Abigail Tere-Apisah) that were awarded with a grant from the GSDF. The financial assistance, according to Oceania Tennis Federation, will cover the players competition-related costs, with the aim of helping them to develop as professional tennis players and compete in Grand Slam tournaments.
After getting the nod of GSDF, which is under the management of the International Tennis Federation, this year, Sinclair played in the Canberra Challenger in Australia last month, dropping his opening round matches in both the singles and doubles events.
The former Pacific Oceania Davis Cup Team member then quickly made up for his early exit in his first tournament of the season by prevailing in the Claremont Club Pro Classic that ran from Feb. 4 to 10 at the Claremont Club outdoor hard courts. Sinclair was seeded first in the tournament and eased his way to the second round after eliminating U.S. qualifier, 6-2, 6-3.
Up next for Sinclair was another U.S. bet in Tyler Lu and the former also took only two sets to win the game, 6-3, 6-3. Then for the third straight time, the Commonwealth player was paired against a U.S. entry in George Goldhoff and eked out a 4-6, 7-5, 6-3 triumph to advance to the semifinals. In the Final Four, Sinclair continued his slaying of U.S players after downing Henry Craig, 6-4, 6-2, to set up a final showdown against Poullain.
With his title conquest in the Claremont Club Pro Classic, Sinclair is expected to climb up the rankings. The CNMI bet us currently ranked No. 129 in the ITF World Tennis (singles) and No. 484 in the ATP.
Meanwhile, Sinclair is now in Arizona to compete in the Westward Look Pro Tennis Classic at the Westward Look Grand Resort and Spa in Tucson. He is seeded No. 3 in the $15,000 pro tournament and will collide against Dominican Republic’s Jessie Olivares in the first round today.