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Hourigan to take on Brit while Tearney faces second seed

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wanganui tennis player Paige Hourigan hadn’t been to the Capital for a long time and was amazed at changes around the city. But she’s now in the women’s singles final of the Wellington Tennis Open against a British pro, Suzy Larkin who has been training out of Auckland.

Although there are no ATP or WTA ranking points on offer, there is good prizemoney on offer and some good match practice while in New Zealand.

For 20-year-old Hourigan who represented New Zealand in Fed Cup this year and has a pro ranking it’s fun to take part in the tournament and have family see her play especially as she finishes off her American College education in Atlanta, Georgia and then intends to follow with a full pro career.

Hourigan beat Wellington’s Ivy Mclean in the quarters and then won her semi over second seed Jo Carswell (Auckland) in straight sets. Her finals opponent, Larkin has a current WTA ranking of 725, but was 100 places higher during the year. Larkin defeated 16-year-old Elys Saguil Ventura, a winner of the national junior title in three sets.

The men’s final, features the top two seeds as No.1 ranked Finn Tearney, a Davis Cup squad member aims for his Wellington Open title up against 21-year-old Rhett Purcell, looking for his first.

The final has the potential to be high quality with both players hard-hitters and both keen to push their case for future national honours as well. Tearney, who has an ATP ranking just over 500 and has suffered from a number of injuries had earlier accounted for talented Wellington teen George Stoupe in the quarters and then was forced to pull out all stops against the powerful Anton Bettink in his semi.

Purcell ranked 1171 in the world put away Wellington junior Isaac Becroft in the quarters and then KP Pannu in the semis. Earlier Pannu had beaten Artem Sitak in his quarter-final.

Results:

Men’s singles quarter-finals:

(1) Finn Tearney (Wellington) bt George Stoupe (Lower Hutt) 6-2 6-1, KP Pannu (Wellington) bt (3)Artem Sitak (Auckland) 7-6(4) 6-4 Anton Bettink (Auckland) bt (4)Ajeet Rai 6-4 6-4, (2)Rhett Purcell (Auckland) bt Isaac Becroft (Wellington) 6-3 6-4

Semifinals:

Tearney bt Bettink 6-4 6-4, Purcell bt Pannu 6-3 6-0.

Women’s singles quarter-finals:

(1)Suzy Larkin (GBR) bt (7) Holly Stewart (Auckland) 6-1 6-2, (5) Elys Saguil Ventura (Nth Harbour) bt (4) Nina Paripovich (Waikato) 6-7 (4) 6-0 6-1, (3) Paige Hourigan (Wanganui) bt Ivy Mclean (Wellington) 6-3 6-0, (2) Jo Carswell (Auckland) bt Jade Otway (Marlborough) 6-0 6-4

Semifinals:

Hourigan bt Carswell 6-3 6-1, Larkin bt Saguil Ventura 6-1 3-6 6-2.

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