Cain, Stephens stand tall at Mayberry Juniors
Two of Jamaica's top junior tennis players, Damani Cain and Michaela Stephens, added to their well-stacked trophy cases when they came out victors in the 16-and-under age group matches, which were the feature events in the Mayberry Investments Junior Tennis Championships at the Eric Bell Tennis Centre at Piccadilly Road in Kingston at the weekend.
Both were the No. 1-seeded players in the their age groups, and although they were challenged on occasions, they were able to lift their games when necessary to come out the champions. The tournament, which was in its sixth year, catered to youngsters in the 12-and-under, 14-and-under, and 16-and-under age groups for both boys and girls.
Anika Jengelley, Mayberry's assistant vice-president for marketing, who spoke on behalf of the sponsors at the prize-giving ceremony, said they were pleased with the performances of the participants, and pledged to continue supporting the tournament.
Cain, who was impressive in all his matches, was challenged in the finals by Keyondre Clarke, who, after being blown out in the first set, losing 6-0, put up a spirited challenged in the second set. He served well and was aggressive, and Cain, who seemed to be complacent at the start, had to call on his A game to take the second set 7-5.
Stephens had a similar experience against runner-up Jenna Harrison. Stephens won the first set 6-2, and while she was in cruise control in the second set, Harrison lifted her game appreciably and actually served for the set at 5-4. Loose serving by Harrison let Stephens back in the game, however. She was broken to make it 5-5 and Stephens then won the next two games to take the set 7-5, and the match.
Blake Shoucair played aggressive tennis to take the boys' 14-and-under title with a 7-5, 6-2 victory over Russell Fairman, while Alicia Pairman won the 14-and-under girls' round-robin 3-0 with Peta-Gaye Graham as the runner-up.
Joshua Haye defeated Jahmarie Swan 6-0, 6-1 to take the boys' 12-and-under title. Daniil Moe won the boys' 12-and-under consolation singles by defeating Dimitri Silvera 8-1.
Dominic Lopez won the boys' 16-and-under consolation singles with a 8-2 victory over Jonah Leo-Rhynie.