By Glenys Furness
- Mark Whitehouse came through qualifying to lift title
- The Brit didn’t drop a set all tournament
- Took out three seeds en route
CASTELO BRANCO, PORTUGAL – Mark Whitehouse came through qualifying without dropping a set and claimed his first ITF tour level title. The Brit took out the top seed along the way.
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Brit of the Week
Mark Whitehouse entered the hard court event in Portugal, and had to come through the qualifying rounds. The Brit was the fourth seed in qualifying. Whitehouse made it to the main draw without much trouble. In the first round of the main draw the Brit was drawn against the sixth seed Tiago Cacao.
The Portuguese tried to stay with the Brit, but the qualifier was having none of it. Whitehouse secured an early break of serve in the first set and held on to take the lead. The second set was more of the same for the qualifier who was able to get the break and move on into the second round 6-3, 6-4.
In the second round Whitehouse was against Antonio Cembellin Prieto. The Spaniard stayed toe to toe with the Brit in the first set, however the qualifier ultimately secured the break needed to see out the set. In the second set Cembellin Prieto kept things competitive. Whitehouse managed to break right at the end of the set to move into the quarter-final 6-4, 7-5.
The quarter-final saw the Brit against another Spaniard Ivan Marrero Curbelo. The Brit dominated the match from start to finish. Whitehouse prevented Marrero Curbelo from getting any games on the board in the first set. In the second the Spaniard managed to secure two games, but it was the Brit who progressed 6-0, 6-2.
In the semi-final Whitehouse was playing Pablo Vivero Gonzalez who was the top seed. The Spaniard proved a tough test for the Brit, with the first set going to the wire. The set looked to be heading to a tiebreak, however Whitehouse managed to secure the break right at the end. In the second set the Brit was once again able to break the serve of Vivero Gonzalez to move into the final 7-5, 6-4.
The final saw the qualifier up against the third seed Nuno Borges. The Portuguese player had the crowd behind him, but this did not prevent Whitehouse from breaking the seed and claiming the first set. Borges tried to re-group in the second set, however the Brit was not going to be denied. Once again Whitehouse obtained the break and went on to claim the title 6-4, 6-4.
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ITF & Challenger Round Up
Ben Jones was defeated by Nicholas Horton in the first round in Portugal 3-6, 6-4, 6-2.
Evan Hoyt was defeated by Altuğ Çelikbilek in the first round in Spain 6-0, 6-1.
Billy Harris was defeated by Zsombor Piros in the second round in Spain 6-2, 6-4.
Alexis Canter was defeated by Marc-Andrea Hüsler in the first round in Canada 7-5, 6-0.
Joel Cannell was defeated by Martin Redlicki in the second round in the USA 2-6, 7-6(3), 7-6(3).
Ryan Peniston was defeated by Evgeny Karlovskiy in the semi-final in the USA 6-7(3), 6-2, 6-3.
Isaac Stoute was defeated by Ahmed Deedat Abdul Razak in the first round in Malaysia 6-4, 6-2.
Emily Appleton was defeated by Valentyna Ivakhnenko in the first round in the Netherlands 6-1, 6-1.
Emily Arbuthnott was defeated by Allie Kiick in the first round in France 6-3, 6-0.
Eden Silva was defeated by Fatma Al-Nabhani in the quarter-final in Portugal 6-3, 6-4.
Next week Brits play in London (Wimbledon), Winnetka, France, Italy, Spain, Malaysia, Netherlands, USA, Canada, Portugal & Thailand.
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