Re: The Danes are coming - Danish juniors thread
Danish junior championship 2011 (outdoors)
All the best Danish juniors are in Århus this week - competing for the Danish outdoors titles! The big winners at the 2010 outdoors championship were Cecilie Melsted, Martine Ditlev, and Simone Alipieva. They all won three events each (singles, doubles, and mixed) at U16, U14, and U12 respectively! But there will be much more fight this year! The most exciting events will probably be U16 and U14. Here is a quick rundown of the favourites:
Martine Ditlev and Cecilie Melsted are seeded 1 and 2. They are in a league of their own in Denmark, and anything but a final between these two will be a big surprise. Martine has shown better form than Cecilie recently and has passed Cecilie in the Danish rankings. But Martine had a disappointing 1st round loss in her latest tournament - a G5 in Århus where she was seeded #2. So this could go either way.
Another interesting clash is in the quarters where Julie Noe and Ulrikke Høyer will play against each other. Ulrikke was considered a huge talent a few years ago, and was one of the elite players alongside Cecilie Melsted and Martine Ditlev. But Ulrikke never got the important wins when it mattered (and Ulrikke has has a lot of retirements/withdrawals). Julie Noe has had more succes recently and has sort of taken over Ulrikke's status as elite player in Denmark. Julie has also been chosen to play for Denmark at the European Olympics this summer (with Martine Ditlev). Ulrikke Høyer, however, played some really good matches in the Århus ITF tournament recently, so it will be an interesting QF!
The three big contenders for the title are the three top seeds Emilie Francati, Emma Rønholt and Simone Alipieva. Emma and Simone are in the same section, so my guess is that it'll be a final between Emilie and Simone. Noone else should be able to beat any of these three, but I'll keep an eye on the 4th and 5th seeds, Frederikke Svarre and Ella Hedeboe. Frederikke got a wild card for the Copenhagen WTA, which was a big surprise, and Ella Hedeboe had a really good week at the TE Birkerød a few weeks ago beating some seeded players. Frederikke Svarre, btw, is the daughter of former Modern Pentathlon world champion Pernille Svarre.
Again, the four top seeds seems head and shoulders above the rest. They are (1)Helena Steenberg, (2) Sofie V. Bjerringgaard, (3) Ida Emilie Stilling Krause, (4) Laura Cecilie Michelsen. Helena Steenberg won the indoors title a couple of months ago, and will be the favourite again.
Unfortunately there are not many U18 players. It seems like most girls have found other interests or priorities at this age. While the U12 girls tournament has an almost full 64-draw qualification to enter the 32 players main draw, the U18 girls had no qualy and still don't have a full 32 player main draw!
Anna Signe Rasmussen is the favourite by a good margin. Amanda Arildsen Wessung is not participating here; she's one of the few Danish juniors who's missing the outdoors championships 2011.