Japan’s Rei Sakamoto Wins Australian Open Junior Boys’ Final

The Associated Press
Rei Sakamoto of Japan poses with his trophy at the Australian Open championships in Melbourne on Saturday.

MELBOURNE (AP) — Top-seeded Renata Jamrichova claimed the Australian Open junior girls’ singles title with a 6-4 6-1 win over 15-year-old Emerson Jones on Saturday.

Jamrichova made six aces and saved five of six break points to clinch her first Grand Slam singles’ title in just over an hour on Rod Laver Arena.

“I’m just so happy right now,” Jamrichova said. “I played my best this week. At first I started really nervous because of the crowd and of the Rod Laver (Arena), but then I just told myself, just be happy on the court and enjoy every point, just be happy that you can (be) here and play this amazing match.”

The 16-year-old Slovakian won the juniors doubles title at Melbourne Park last year and made the semifinals of the juniors’ tournaments at Wimbledon and the U.S. Open in a stellar season.

In the boys’ final, fourth-seeded Rei Sakamoto of Japan rallied from a set down to beat Jan Kumstat 3-6, 7-6 (2), 7-5.

The 17-year-old Sakamoto had to withstand 25 aces from his big-serving Czech opponent, ranked No.42, but still found a way to wrest back momentum after losing the first set to win the title in two hours, 11 minutes.

“First off all, congrats to Jan for this,” Sakamoto said. “Thanks to my coach and to everyone for supporting me. Thanks so much.”