Britain’s Jodie Burrage will play top seed Dalma Galfi of Hungary for the women’s Ilkley Trophy title while American Jack Sock will play Zizou Bergs of Belgium in the men’s singles crown in front of a sell-out Sunday crowd at the Ilkley Lawn Tennis & Squash Club in West Yorkshire.
Oh man, that was quite an interesting match for sure, a lot of ups and downs, some highs and lows out there for sure but scrapped out another one and happy to be in the final here Jack Sock
Burrage, who is part of the LTA’s Pro Scholarship Programme, defeated fellow Brit Sonay Kartal in two very tight sets 7-6(4) 7-6(1) to advance to the women’s singles final.
“It was a pretty tough match today,” Burrage admitted. “The conditions definitely didn’t suit me; definitely suited her a little bit more being colder and windy, but I think I managed. I was playing pretty well. I mean, she made so many balls, so I really had to keep patient, really keep my mind together, finishing points and stuff so happy to get through but it was definitely a tough one.”
In the other women’s semi-final, Galfi defeated American third seed Katie Volynets 6-3 3-6 7-6(4).
In the men’s Challenger event Sock secured his spot in the final by defeating Frenchman Constant Lestienne 7-5 2-6 6-4 in two hours and 18-minutes. He will face qualifier Bergs after the Belgian overcame Lucky Loser Alexei Popyrin 6-2 7-5 of Australia in the other semi-final that lasted one hour and 31-minutes.
“Oh man, that was quite an interesting match for sure, a lot of ups and downs, some highs and lows out there for sure but scrapped out another one and happy to be in the final here,” Sock said following his win.
“Thank you guys for coming out, I know it’s not the best weather, a bit chilly but appreciate you guys coming out on the weekend and supporting us playing out here.”
“He’s a really tricky player. He’s fairly unorthodox with his gamestyle, super athletic and gets around these courts very very well. The guy puts you under some pressure but yeah today I was able to find a few good shots there at the end and yeah pulled through but yeah he’s got a lot of wins coming ahead if he’s playing like that.”
His next opponent Berg is enjoying his run.
“I started from the qualies, it means so a lot of matches and I needed those on grass because I’m still kind of a rookie,” he said.
“It’s been five years I didn’t play on grass so yeah I just think it works out with my gamestyle, the returning, the serving and in general the aggressive mindset and I’m really happy to be in this stage to get a chance to play final tomorrow, a new chance for a new title and I want to keep building on that.”
There was British success in doubles on Saturday when wildcards Julian Cash and Henry Patten lifted the doubles trophy after a 7-5 6-4 final victory over Ramkumar Ramanathan (IND) and John-Patrick Smith (AUS). It was the pair’s second ATP Challenger doubles title in three weeks.
Naiktha Bains and Maia Lumsden fell just short in the women’s doubles final, losing 6-7(7) 6-0 11-9 to Lizette Cabrera (Aus) and Sujeong Jang (KOR) in a nail-biting match.
Cabrera said: “I’m really grateful that I got to play with Zujeung. She was really fun to play with the whole week, we had some really good matches and it was really exciting to win the title. We are both going to London today and preparing for Wimbledon qualifying on Tuesday.”
Bains added after their loss: “I mean it’s always tough losing in a third set breaker in the final so yeah I don’t think we’re gonna get over that for a little while but if we take that out of it it’s been well fun playing with Maia. Next time we will get over the line in the final.”