We are down to the last four at the Lagos Open. Saturday’s schedule will see 5th seed, Calvin Hemery, take on unseeded Tunisian, Aziz Ouakaa, while Riya Bhatia and Rutuja Bhosale go head-to-head in an all-Indian affair.
Calvin Hemery has been in sensational form all fortnight. The 5th seeded Frenchman, who won the first leg men’s singles title without losing a set, has moved through the second leg draw this week, superbly. He’s a match-win away from another final and will fancy his chances against Aziz Ouakaa, whom he defeated 6-0, 6-2 in the second round of the first leg.
However, Oukaa has raised his level this week. The 20-year-old Tunisian claimed a 5-7, 6-4, 4-2 (rtd) win over 3rd seed, Aziz Dougaz in the quarter-finals to make his maiden ITF semis. Can he build on that and produce something special to stop Hemery?
In the other men’s singles semifinal, 6th seed, Takanyi Garanganga, squares off against 7th seed and last week’s beaten finalist, Aldin Setkic. Both men have faced off twice on the ITF Tour, with a win apiece. Garanganga won their most recent encounter, which was a three-set victory at this stage in the second leg in 2015. They’ve both played really well all fortnight, with Garanganga posting a semifinal-run in the 1st leg. Can he go one better this time?
In the women’s field, Riya Bhatia and Rutuja Bhosale open play on Court 1 in an all-Indian business. Bhatia, who’s seeded No. 6, rallied from a set down to beat top seed, Seone Mendez, 4-6, 6-0, 6-0 and reach her second straight semifinals. Last week, she fell to Laura Pigossi. Can she get it right now? Bhosale will prove to be a very tough test, though.
The 5th seed hasn’t dropped more than two games in a single match en route to the quarter-finals. Such super form! She brushed aside the tournament’s 3rd seed, Sandra Samir, 6-2, 6-0 in the quarter-finals and will be looking to maintain that momentum. It’s a first-time meeting between both women and it promises to be gripping.
In the other women’s semifinal, 2nd seed, Valeriya Strakhova, who’s bidding for her 13th ITF title, will face 9-time ITF champion, Nastja Kolar.
Matches begin from 10:00am on Saturday at the Lagos Lawn Tennis Club, Onikan.
Full Order of Play