Teenage Prodigy Felix Auger-Aliassime To Be Fast-Tracked To The Pro Tour - UBITENNIS
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Teenage Prodigy Felix Auger-Aliassime To Be Fast-Tracked To The Pro Tour



Felix Auger Aliassime hits a forehand during the Boys Singles final match against Geoffrey Blancaneaux on day fifteen of the 2016 French Open (Source: Dennis Grombkowsk/zimbio.com)

It isn’t very often that a 15-year-old make headlines on the ATP Tour. Then against Felix Auger-Aliassime is far from the ordinary as Tennis Canada plans to elevate him to the highest level of the sport.


In 2015 the Canadian achieved a duo of milestones in Challenger Tour history. After becoming one of the youngest players to qualify for the main draw of a tournament, in July he became the youngest player in history to win a main draw match when he reached the quarter-finals at the Granby Challenger.

The success has continued into this year. Currently No.2 in the junior world rankings, Auger-Aliassime recently reached the final at the boys’ French Open. His bid for the biggest title in his young career ended in disappointment after he was edged out in three close sets by unseeded french player Geoffrey Blancaneaux  (1-6, 6-3, 8-6). The run in Paris came a month after the 15-year-old reached his first final on the Futures tour in Lleida, Spain.

There is no doubt that the Montreal-born player is a potential star in the making and Tennis Canada is eager to get the ball rolling.  Two months shy of his 16th birthday, the teenager is ready to stop playing in juniors and move to the senior tour according to the vice-president of Tennis Canada, Louis Borfigahas.

“We will not admit him in junior due to his performance,” he said.
“Next year we will register the majority of his tournaments in the pros. When he plays like this at (almost) 16 years, you have to focus as much as possible on the professionals.”

It has also been confirmed that Felix-Aliassime will play at the upcoming Rogers Cup in Toronto. It is expected that he will be awarded a wildcard into the qualifying tournament according to Borfigahas.

Eager to not take things too quickly, there is still much more development needed in the Canadian’s game according to the Tennis Canada official.

“He must improve in my opinion, all his shots: he must  return better, attack more regular with  his forehand. He must also gain experience. he has many things to work on and that’s normal: he’s only 15. And that’s good!” Borfigahas said.

Health fears

Concerns about the health of the 15-year-old start to circulated at the start of this year when it was reported that he suffers from tachycardia (an abnormally rapid heart rate). According to French website France-Antilles, the condition forced him to withdraw during a match at the Guadalupe Challenger earlier this year.  Despite the worries, Auger-Aliassime has dismissed the severity of the issue.

“I’m not worried about this,” he recently said in Paris about the health concern.
“I’m fit. I’m healthy. These things happen. They will be solved during the summer. Nothing serious.”

Wimbledon next

At a career high of 606th in the world, Felix-Aliassime is the highest ranked player under the age of 16 on the ATP Tour. He has played in five pro tournaments this year (five futures and one Challenger), recording a win-loss of 10-6. There is certainly a bright future ahead for the teenager, but he admits that there is still a long way to go.

“It is important to keep feet on the ground and say that there is still a long way to make to the next level,” the 15-year-old told RDS.ca.

Felix-Aliassime  will play in next month’s Wimbledon championships, participating in the boys’ draw. A week before the start of SW19, he will also play in the prestigious Nike Junior International in Roehampton.

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Hamad Medjedovic wins the Next Gen Finals title in Jeddah



Hamad Medjedovic came back from one set down to beat Arthur Fils 3-4 (6-8) 4-1 4-2 3-4 (9-11) 4-1 after 2 hours and 11 minutes at the Next Gen ATP Finals at King Abdullah Sports City in Jeddah. 


Medjedovic hit 38 winners to 21 unforced errors. 

The first set went on serve en route to the tie-break. Medjedovic earned a mini-break to take a 3-2 lead and held two set points at 6-4, but he was not able to convert them. Fils won four consecutive points to win the tie-break 8-6. 

Medjedovic earned a break in the second game to win the second set 4-1. 

Medjedovic becomes the sixth Next Gen ATP Finals champion, joining top 10 players Stefanos Tsitsipas, Jannik Sinner and Carlos Alcaraz. The 20-year-old Serbian player is the lowest-ranked champion in tournament history. 

Medjedovic started the third set with an early break in the first game. The Serbian player held on his serve to seal the set 4-2. 

Medjedovic recovered from squandering two match points at 6-4 in a thrilling tie-break of the fourth set at 5-6 and 7-8. Fils saved both chances on second serves and won four of the next five points to win the tie-break 11-9 forcing the match to a deciding set. 

to win the first five-set final in tournament history. The Serbian player won 88% and converted his third match point to clinch the biggest title of his career so far. 

Medjedovic earned a break in the second game of the fifth set. Fils earned himself a penalty point for a smash of his raquet and went down 0-3. Medjedovic held on his next service games and converted his third match point. 

“Two of us from Serbia. Djokovic won the big Masters, the real one, and I won the Next Gen. Obviously it’s a huge thing and I am happy to follow in his footsteps in some way. I can’t believe I have won this title. It’s going to give me a lot of confidence for 2024. Arthur is an amazing player. He is top 40 for a reason”, said Medjedovic. 

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Elena Rybakina headlines a strong line-up in Adelaide



Elena Rybakina, Zheng Qinwen, Carolina Garcia and Angelique Kerber will highlight the Adelaide International, a WTA 500 tournament.


Rybakina reached the final at the Adelaide International on her tournament debut in 2022, losing to now retired Ashleigh Barty. Rybakina went on to win her first Grand Slam title at Wimbledon later last year. The Kazakh player finished runner-up to Aryna Sabalenka in the Australian Open final in 2023. 

Zheng won her first WTA 500 title in Zhengzhou and reached the final in Zhuhai, ending the 2023 season at a career-high of world number 15. 

Angelique Kerber will make her come-back to the WTA Tour at the United Cup before playing her first WTA draw in Adelaide. Kerber gave birth to her daughter Liana last February. The German player won titles at the 2016 Australian Open and in Sydney 2018 and reached in Sydney 2014 and in Brisbane 2018. 

Kerber is one of the three former number 1 players, who are making her come-back on the WTA Tour after giving birth to their children. 

Caroline Wozniacki lost to eventual champion Coco Gauff in the Round of 16 at the US Open in her third tournament back. 

Four-time Grand Slam champion Naomi Osaka is planning to make her return next January after giving back to her child Shai last July. 

“It’s definitely way more tournaments than I used to play. So I think some people will be happy with that. I realized that I don’t know how the beginning of the year is going to go for me. I don’t know the level of player and I think I have to ease into it. At the very least, I will set myself up for a very good end of the year”, said Osaka.

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Arthur Fils beats Luca Van Assche in all-French semifinal at the Next Gen ATP Finals in Jeddah



World number 36 Arthur Fils beat his friend Luca Van Assche 2-4 4-1 4-3 (7-1) 4-3 (8-6) in an all-French clash after 1 hour and 37 minutes to reach the final at the Next Gen ATP Finals in Jeddah. 


Van Assche, who was born in Belgium but moved to Belgium when he was three years old, broke serve in the fifth game to take a 3-2 lead and served out the first set to 15. Van Assche won 12 of the last 14 points. 

Fils hit a couple of big forehands to earn three break points at 2-1 15-40. Van Assche saved one break point with a volley, but Fils converted his second chance to open up a 3-1 lead, as Van Assche netted a backhand. Fils served out with a hold at 15 to level the match at one set apiece. 

The first five games of the third set went on serve. Van Assche led 2-3 30-40 on Fils’serve to earn two set points. 

Fils saved them before racing out to a 5-0 lead. Van Assche won his first point with a forehand. Fils earned five set points and closed it out when Van Assche netted a backhand. 

Fils won 22 consecutive points on his first serve until 2-1 in the fourth set. Van Assche faced a match point at 2-3, but Van Assche saved it to force another tie-break. Fils opened up a 4-1 with a mini-break. Van Assche won three points to 4-4 before saving two match points at 4-6 and 5-6. Fils hit a forehand to earn a fourth match point and converted it when Van Assche sent a backhand over the baseline. 

Van Assche beat Fils in the boys’ singles final at 2021 Roland Garros. Fils won his first title in Lyon last May. 

“I played every point trying everything with my forehand, moving very good. I was very happy with the tie-break. Today was a tough match against a great friend. We have known each other since we were nine, so it was a little bit tough and I am happy with the win. I came onto the court with the mindset that I can win. The first set was tough, he was playing very good and defending so well, running very fast. I kept my focus and I am really happy with the win”, said Fils. 

Fils set up a final clash against Hamad Medjedovic, who advanced to the championships match, when Dominic Stricker was forced to withdraw in the second set due to a back injury in the semifinal. 

Medjedovic was leading 4-3 (7-5) 2-1 when Stricker walked to the net and ended the match. 

Medjedovic hit 12 winners to 3 unforced errors. The Serbian player won three matches in the round-robin group. 

Medjedovic won 93% of his first serve points in the first set. Stricker did not drop a point on his first serve. Medjedovic earned his only mini-break to seal the tie-break 7-5. 

Medjedovic earned an early break in the third game of the second set to take a 2-1 lead before Stricker retired from the match. 

Medjedovic reached two semifinals in Gstaad and Astana. He is coached by Viktor Troicki. Stricker advanced to the semifinals at the 2022 Next Gen ATP Finals in Milan. 

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