Top seed Catherine “CiCi” Bellis of Atherton wrapped up an impressive campaign at the Tevlin Challenger, capturing her second consecutive $50,000 ITF Pro Circuit title on Canadian soil with a 6-2, 1-6, 6-3 victory over Jesika Maleckova of Czech Republic in Sunday’s final at the Aviva Centre in Toronto.
Bellis broke her opponent six times in the hour and thirty-six-minute contest, which saw Maleckova require two medical time outs, and rebounded from a tough second set to cap off the week.
“I felt great today,” Bellis said. “Jesika [Maleckova is such a great player and I knew it was going to be a tough match because I had seen some of her matches earlier this week and she’s been playing so well. I was ready for a battle, and that’s what it was. I guess I got a little lucky, but I was playing well and came out on top.”
With the win in Toronto, Bellis captures her third title of the season, and second in Canada, having won the $50,000 Saguenay Challenger in October. The 17-year-old will also break into the Top 100 world rankings for the first time in her career.
“It means everything to me,” said Bellis on her success in Toronto. “This has been the best year of my life and the best couple tournaments of my life. I’ve never been happier.”
Stanford product Carol Zhao was eliminated from competition in the first round Tuesday, losing to qualifier Ronit Yurovsky of the United States, 6-1, 2-6, 6-2 in an hour and 46 minutes.
At the $50,000 Scottsdale tournament, Kristie Ahn lost to Beatriz Haddad Maia of Brazil 7-6(4), 7-6(2), which means she now must win Waco next week to pass Kayla Day for the women's Australian Open Wild Card Challenge. From zootennis.com