Lancashire Times
Weekend Edition
Mark Gregory
9:26 AM 21st March 2023

British Tennis Watch – Week 11

In this long-running series of articles, we will be reviewing all the action in the world of British tennis, from Grand Slams to Juniors.

We’ll be trying to cover all manner of tennis at various different levels, with a focus on British prospects. For now, though, we will be keeping our focus on Singles action, and putting Doubles to one side except for big events such as the Grand Slams.

The article is split into different levels – these levels are based on the number of points available for the winner of each tournament. For example, a tournament at ‘250 Level’ means there are 250 ranking points available for the winning player.

Please let us know if we miss anyone off by emailing me at

Week 10 – 13–19 March

In this week’s edition:

Cam Norrie reaches Indian Wells quarter-finals
Oliver Bonding shines in Indian Wells junior competition
Luca Pow clinches J200 title in DomRep

ATP/WTA Main Tour

1000 Level

When we left the Indian Wells 1000 tournament last week, four Brits were still involved in the competition, and it was British male number one Cameron Norrie who lasted the longest, reaching the quarter-finals before eventual defeat to home hopeful Francis Tiafoe.

Norrie entered the tournament in fine form, having beaten Carlos Alcaraz (who eventually went on to win the competition) in Rio de Janeiro two weeks prior, and the Brit faced sixth seed Andrey Rublev in the last 16, levelling their head-to-head to two apiece with a dominant performance, running out 6-2 6-4 winner. But in his quarter-final match against info, Norrie seemed in a bad mood and mightily frustrated even before the match had really gotten going, and with the crowd on Tiafoe’s side, the Brit was unable to claw back an early deficit and went out 6-4 6-4.

Meanwhile, 21-year-old Jack Draper met 35-year-old Andy Murray in the third round, and youth overcame experience as Draper saved a set point in the first set before clinching it via a tiebreak, and then dominating the second set to emerge victorious 7-6(6) 6-2. Unfortunately, Draper picked up an injury niggle sometime between his victory over Murray and his next match against Alcaraz, and the young Brit was a shell of his true self against the eventual champion in the last 16, losing the first set before retiring a break down in the second.

In the women’s draw, Emma Raducanu defeated Brazilian 13th seed Beatriz Haddad Maia in the third round to set up a momentous task against world number one Iga Swiatek in the last 16 – and it proved to be too momentous for the 20-year-old Brit, who hung tough for the first few games but eventually was outplayed by the Pole, going down 6-3 6-1 in what eventually became a foregone conclusion.

The top-tier tournaments continue in the States next week as a 1000-level event takes place in Miami, with most of the Brits involved in Indian Wells making the journey east to Florida, and the second half of the so-called ‘Sunshine Double’.

ATP Challenger Tour / WTA/ITF Futures Tour

80 Level

There weren’t many Brits in action at the upper levels of the Challenger/ITF tours this week, with only Naiktha Bains making the main draw of the four Brits in action at 80 Level. Bains wasn’t able to make much impact on the draw in Canberra – she lost in three sets to her Aussie opponent in the first round.

Three Brits managed to get into qualifying at the ITF80 event in Pretoria, South Africa, but none of them made the main draw. Eliz Maloney, despite being seeded second in qualifying, lost in the final qualifying round 6-1 3-6 6-3 against 19-year-old Belgian Tilwith Di Girolami, while Danielle Daley was somewhat fortunate to get a win in the first qualifying round after her opponent retired after just four games; Daley promptly lost 6-1 6-1 in the final qualifying round. Lauryn John-Baptiste fell in straight sets in the first round of qualifying.

70 Level

Maia Lumsden successfully got out of qualifying for the ITF70 in Prague this week, taking out two seeded opponents to make the main draw. But her progress was halted in the first round proper, where she fell to fellow qualifier Sofya Lansere 6-2 6-2.

Francesca Jones went one better out in Colombia – she had entered the main draw directly and won her opening match in two tight sets, but ran into fifth seed Joanne Zuger of Switzerland in the last 16 and went on to lose 6-2 6-1 after being broken six times. Emily Appleton was also in qualifying, but lost to Ukrainian Valeriya Strakhova in the final qualifying round.

50 Level

Alisha Reayer was a wildcard entrant to the main draw of the ITF50 in Spain this week, despite having failed to reach the main draw of her three previous tournaments on the Iberian Peninsula back in February. The unranked Reayer put up a good fight against fourth seed Rosa Vicens Mas but ultimately fell 7-5 6-2 after winning just 25% of points on her second serve. Amanda Carreras, ranked just outside the top 500, was entered into qualifying but just missed out at the final hurdle – a familiar story this week for the British ladies.

25 Level

There was plenty of action amongst Men at the ITF25 events across the world this week, as the lower-ranked British males tried to improve their standing in the game.

22-year-old Aidan McHugh narrowly missed out on a place in the final of the ITF25 in Portico, Portugal this week after losing a third-set tiebreak against Australian Akira Santillan. McHugh, who was seeded eighth at the event, lost just one set in his previous three matches to reach the semis. Billy Harris was also with him in the main draw and seeded fifth; he reached the last 16.

24-year-old Adam Jones was the big winner in Bakersfield, California this week as he emerged from the qualifying draw to reach the quarter-final ahead of several higher-ranked British men. Jones won his two qualifying matches before upsetting the American 4th seed Omni Kumar 7-6(6) 7-6(4) in the last 16, saving two set points in the first set to reach his first quarter-final of the year. He was eventually defeated by another American, Christian Lang, in the quarters. By contrast, Jack Pennington Jones and Blu Baker lost in the first round, while Toby Martin failed to get out of qualifying.

There was less to celebrate in Trimbach, Switzerland, where three British men were hoping for success at the indoor event on mainland Europe. Charles Broom will be kicking himself after he lost his first round match despite serving for the match at 5-3 in the decider and even having a match point in that very game. Anton Matusevich was also unsuccessful in his first round match, while Ying Hoo couldn’t get out of qualifying.

In Canada, four British men were in the main draw in Montreal after three of them successfully navigated the two rounds of qualifying, and James Davis did the best of the lot by reaching the last 16 – Joe Tyler and Ben Jones didn’t get any further than the first round, while Mark Whitehouse – a direct entrant – also lost in the first round. Max Benaim couldn’t quite join his compatriots in the main draw after he lost in qualies.

And finally, Felix Gill in Spain and Jan Choinski in Colombia both won their first round matches but failed to go any further, both being eliminated in three sets after both being in control of the final set.

15 Level

Some promising results at the lowest senior level of international tennis this week, especially in Egypt, where unranked 16-year-old Zach Stephens earned a wildcard into the main draw and promptly went ahead to pick up his first ever ATP rankings point by beating qualifier Aliaksandr Bulitski in straight sets to reach the second round.

But Stephens was somewhat outshone by 23-year-old Hamish Stewart, who battled through qualifying before reaching the quarter-finals – amassing an impressive five game winning streak before his eventual defeat. Michael Shaw also came through qualifying and won a first round match before eventually losing to a seeded player in the last 16.

Elsewhere, Harry Wendelken won one match in France but lost in two tough tiebreaks in the second round; Daniel Little lost similarly, only in the first round. In Tunisia, all four British men failed to make it out of qualifying, although Alexis Canter was the closest, winning two of the three matches needed to make the main draw. In Greece, Felix Mischker and James Beaven both fell at the final qualifying hurdle, while in Turkey, Joseph White couldn’t get past his first qualifying round opponent, losing via a match tiebreak 10-7.

10 Level

Emma Wilson, who won last week’s UK Pro League competition, was in Egypt this week for the ITF10 in Sharm El-Sheikh. Wilson won her first match in the main draw but came unstuck against the seeded Polina Iatcenko in the second round; meanwhile, Yasmina El Sayed and Sholape Ayanbadejo lost in qualifying.

In Tunisia, Abigail Amos was a beneficiary of several withdrawals and ended up in the main draw after originally being drawn into qualifying. She made the most of her luck, winning her opening match before going down 6-2 7-6(2) in a hard-fought tussle against third-seeded Italian Aurora Zantedeschi. Nadia Rawson was in qualifying but succumbed to an injury and returned to the UK for treatment.

In Turkey, Eleanor Baglow couldn’t quite get the third straight win she needed to enter the main draw, but it was a sterling effort to reach the final qualifying round regardless, while compatriot Evelyn Smith lost in the first qualifying round. And finally, Isabelle Cherny won one match in qualifying in Greece before her exit in the second qualifying round.

Junior Tennis

J300 Level

In contrast to last week’s lack of action, there was plenty to offer at the highest level of junior tennis this week, and the best of the Brits was Oliver Bonding, who entered the J300 running alongside the senior tour at Indian Wells this week, and made it all the way to the final after a fantastic string of performances. Bonding, 15, won a J300 in Colombia back in February, and came into the tournament seeded fifth.

The Brit overcame three seeded players, including second seeded American Roy Horovitz, to reach the final, and it was a real tussle between the Brit and his opponent, Cooper Woestendick – another local. The two boys shared tiebreaks in the first two sets – with Bonding even having match points to clinch the match in straight sets – before eventually the American proved too strong for Bonding, rising to take the final set 6-2. But another fantastic week for the young Brit, who has seen his ranking rise to 44th in the world junior rankings – at 15, that’s quite an achievement.

Elsewhere, Josh Manuel was handed a wildcard to the J300 main draw in Malaysia. Upon winning his first match, he promptly disposed of the top seed, junior world number 30 Hayden Jones, in an impressive display, before running out of steam and being dumped out in the next round 6-1 6-0! The highs and lows of tennis, I suppose!

Meanwhile, rising star Hannah Klugman was seeded at the J300 in Casablanca, Morocco this week, but the young 14-year-old couldn’t get past her second round opponent, Romanian 15-year-old Eva Maria Ionescu, losing in a third-set tiebreak.

J200 Level


Whether it’s common to have an all-British final at a junior event in the Dominican Republic or not, I’m not really sure, but it happened this week when Luca Pow and Charlie Robertson reached the final of the J200 in the Caribbean, with Pow extending his winning streak over Robertson to 4-0 to clinch the title. Pow, 18, is in his final year of eligibility for the junior tour, and the title brings him up to 68th in the junior rankings, while Robertson, at 16, still has two more years left on the junior tour should he wish to use them. Pow’s run to the title was an impressive one, dropping just one set along the way to his first junior title of the year. Luca Bluett was also in the main tour for the Boys but lost in the first round.

There were four British girls in action too in Santo Domingo, although none of them got further than the second round. Top seed Hephzibah Oluwadare and 16th seed Ruby Cooling did win their opening two matches, but both were beaten in the last 16. Gabia Paskauskas and Ellie Blackford made the second round.

Meanwhile, at the J200 in Spain, Isabelle Lacy enjoyed a third seeding and reached the quarter-finals before losing to a local qualifier, while Viktor Frydrych lost in the opening round to extend his losing streak to four matches.

J100 Level


It’s perhaps more common to see an all-British final at a British event, and that proved to be the case in Loughborough this week as the first of several J100s rolled into town. The Boys’ and Girls’ singles saw Brits make up five of the eight semi-finalists, although only two made it to the final: Benjamin Gusic Wan eventually defeated Henry Jefferson 7-6(5) 7-5 in a tightly-contested final, and 15-year-old Gusic Wan will be delighted with his first title at this level of junior tennis. Gusic Wan beat fellow Brit Phoenix Weir in the semis, while Given Roach and Marelie Raath were the two beaten Girls’ semi-finalists.

Shout outs should also go to wildcard Tegan Bush, who reached the quarter-finals of the Girls’ draw, and qualifier Dilhan Wasantha, who also made the semis on the Boys’ side.

J60 Level

A good week for 2007-born Athina Schlepphorst at the J60 in El Salvador this week, reaching the semi-finals before losing to the top seed. Ava Williamson also did well in Germany – she reached the quarters before being eliminated, while Finbar McGarvey also reached the quarter-finals of his event in Latvia.

J30 Level

In Sweden at the J30, Freya Peet won one and lost one as she reached the last 16, but Henry Best lost in the first round. In India, Yash Bahalkar emulated Peet to win one and lose one and reach the last 16.