Favored players in quarterfinals


Seven of the eight quarterfinals berths in the boys singles event of the 2019 Northern Marianas Junior Championships went to favored players, as games in the ITF Juniors World Tour event continued yesterday at the Pacific Islands Club hard courts.

No. 1 Yunseok Jang dominated the CNMI’s Sean Lee, 6-0, 6-0, to march into the Round of 8 against No. 6 and Chinese-Taipei’s Hong-Lin Fu, who eliminated South Korean and No. 6 Dogeon Park, 6-2, 6-1. Jang and Fu will battle for one of the two semis berths at the upper half of the draw today.

The other Final Four ticket at the top half of the field will be disputed by No. 3 Matthew Garcia of the Philippines and No. 5 Dong Gyu-Oh of South Korea. Gyu won his third round match over compatriot Gyun Seop Sim, 6-4, 6-1, while Garcia prevailed over No. 14 and Japan’s Kaita Odani, 6-7 (4), 6-1, 7-5.

At the bottom half of the draw, No. 2 Nan Hsun Lin of Chinese-Taipei made it to the quarterfinals after ousting No. 15 Sooyang Yang of South Korea, 6-2, 6-2. Lin will face No. 8 and Japanese Hiro Fujita—a 3-6, 6-3, 6-1 winner over South Korean Je Won Jeon.

No. 16 Kenta Miyoshi is the only other Japanese to make it to the quarterfinals after downing South Korean Junhyun Lee, 7-6 (5), 7-6 (5) and he will be up against the latter’s compatriot. Kim is the lone unseeded player to reach the Round of 8 following his upset over No. 7 and the CNMI’s Robbie Schorr, 6-1, 6-3.

Meanwhile, in the girls singles play, two unseeded players are in the semifinals.

South Korea’s Hui-Gyeong Kim pulled the rag under No. 3 Kanami Hayashige of Japan, 7-5, 6-3, to set up a Final Four duel against No. 2 and China’s Zijun Jiang, who booted out South Korean Seoyoung Kim, 6-4, 7-6 (9).

No. 1 Manami Ukita of Japan also took only two sets to top South Korean Gio Jang, 6-4, 6-2, and she will be taking on unranked Japanese Natsumi Numano, who made it to the semis following an upset over No. 7 and compatriot Honoka Umeda, 6-7 (8), 6-0, 6-0.

Ukita is in the semis, too, of the doubles event, as she and China’s Qianyu Liu defeated South Korean’s Gui-Gyeong and Seoyoung Kim, 7-5, 6-4. Liu and Ukita are the No. 1 seed in the division and will either meet No. 3 Jiang and Haoyan Wu or the unseeded Japanese pair of Riko Kamikura and Hiromi Sekiguchi in the semis.

In the other semis duel, it will be Chinese-Taipei’s Lee and Li Hsin Lin against No. 2 Rio Osoegawa and Kanami Hayashige. The Japanese duo advanced after sweeping Jang and Hong Kong’s Man Li, 6-3, 6-4, while Lin and Lee slipped past No. 4 Sofiya Lebedeva of Russia and Hong Kong’s Hannah Shen, 4-6, 7-5, 11-9.

In the boys doubles, all Top 8 seeds are in the quarterfinals.

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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