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Opelka Captures Wimbledon Boys Final, Zhuk Takes Girls Championship

Reilly Opelka of the United States and Sofya Zhuk of Russia were unseeded novices at the 2015 Wimbledon Junior Championships, yet their lack of experience on one of tennis's grandest stages proved no impediment, with both leaving London with Wimbledon titles.

Wimbledon Girls Champion Sofya Zhuk
courtesy, Paul Ballard
Opelka defeated No. 12 seed Mikael Ymer of Sweden 7-6(5) 6-4 in Sunday's boys final, while Zhuk claimed her first junior slam title with a 7-5, 6-4 victory over No. 12 seed Anna Blinkova, also of Russia.

The door opened for Zhuk when top seed Marketa Vondrousova of the Czech Republic was upset in the first round by British wild card Anna Brogan. Zhuk took advantage, beating No. 7 seed Charlotte Robillard-Millette of Canada and No. 11 seed Fanni Stollar of Hungary en route to the quarterfinals. There the 15-year-old from Moscow defeated 14-year-old wild card Anastasia Potapova of Russia 6-4, 6-4, then advanced to Saturday's final with a 6-1, 6-3 win over qualifier Viktoria Kuzmova of Slovakia.

Blinkova guaranteed Russia its second girls Wimbledon championship when she defeated unseeded Vera Lapko of Belarus, who had beaten Michaela Gordon of the US in the quarterfinals. Blinkova had overcome American wild card Tornado Alicia Black 1-6, 6-3, 12-10 in their quarterfinal encounter, a 3-hour and 7-minute marathon that was the longest match of the Junior Championships.

The 16-year-old Blinkova had the security of previous wins over Zhuk, but it was the younger girl who handled the occasion with aplomb. Playing in front of over 8,000 Court 1 spectators who were enjoying a spectacular English summer day at the All England Lawn Tennis Club, Zhuk ran out to a 4-0 lead to open the match.

"The beginning was really important for me because I know with this girl, I lost against her four times in last two years," said Zhuk, who was playing in just her second junior slam. "I knew her pretty good. It was really important to start with concentration on each point."

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Page updated on Monday, March 11, 2019
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