Youngsters kick it off in Nürnberg


The 2014 Nürnberger Versicherungscup is all about the young talent as some of the WTA’s most promising young players are fighting for the German clay title this week.

Before the main draw got underway on Sunday, there was qualifying to wrap up as three finals were played, seeing Anastasia Rodionova, Julia GlushkoBeatriz Garcia Vidagany make their way into the main draw.

Nürnberg-born Nina Zander made the main draw without playing a single point as Petra Martic had to withdraw with a wrist injury before their match, the main draw is completed by lucky loser Montserrat Gonzalez.

The first main draw match in the afternoon was a quality affair as Mona Barthel met Belinda Bencic. Despite being six-years apart, both players are widely regarded to be future champions and their match did not disappoint, providing plenty of excellent tennis as Barthel clinched a hotly-contested two-set win.

With one German already through to the next round, it was up to Anna-Lena Friedsam to make her way into round two. On paper, wild-card player Lisa-Maria Moser was a favorable draw but the Austrian took the first set much to the crowd’s surprise, forcing Friedsam to dig deep and grind out a three-set win.

Friedsam’s win could earn her a R2 match against tournament top-seed Angelique Kerber, ironically her successful run could also cost Friedsam her French Open debut next week. Still being one withdrawal away from making the main draw, the German’s second-round match in Nürnberg effectively prevents her from playing qualifying in Paris, potentially locking her out of the French classic.

The average age of the draw was reduced even further as one of the most experienced singles players failed to advance to the next round. Just like in 2013, Klara Koukalova lost her first round match in Nürnberg and just like last year, it was Polona Hercog who proved to be too much to handle for the Czech.

Today wasn’t just all about youth though as the tournament was also graced by the presence of the WTA’s most experienced players as Kimiko Date-Krumm entered the doubles competition with Caroline Garcia, a pairing that is no less than 23 years of age apart.

Tomorrow will see even more talented young players take to the courts as Annika Beck, Eugenie Bouchard, Elina Svitolina and many more are due to kick off their 2014 Nürnberger Versicherungscup campaign. Stick with us for all the latest coverage straight from Nürnberg!


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