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Another championships win for SA in Russia

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South Africa enjoyed another victorious day at the ITF Beach Tennis World Team Championships in the Russian capital, Moscow.

After upsetting Lithuania 2-1 on Wednesday in a historic first ever World Championships victory, South Africa scored their second win of the championships, this time over Thailand 2-1.

Thailand were first on the scoreboard when their sister women’s doubles combination of Chatmanee and Napaww Jankiaw beat South Africa’s Bronwyn Davidson and Helga Jeska 6-4 6-1.

Once again the South Africans started strongly and were up a break in the first six games of the opening set but then failed to capitalise on the 4-2 lead and lost four games in a row which swung the momentum into the Thai’s favour and they dominated the second set securing victory.

In the men’s doubles, South Africa made a tactical change to their combination with Frans Ledwaba making his debut at the Championships and partnering up with Ryan Brookshaw.

Both had played at the ITF events at Pococks, Northriding west of Johannesburg in May. Their Thai opponents, Chayanin Puttaraksakul and Sakda Saewong were an experienced team but the South Africans put up an excellent display of beach tennis tactical play to beat the Thai team 6-4 6-4 and take the tie into a deciding rubber.

The final mixed doubles rubber then took to court. South Africa kept their winning team of Tucker Vorster and Helga Jeska to do battle against Napaww Jankiaw and Chayanin Puttaraksak.

After winning the opening set 6-1, the South Africans found themselves a break down in the second set. But they dug deep and kept their composure eventually breaking back and forcing the set to 5-5.  South Africa found another break of serve in the 11th game and served out the set winning it 7-5 which secured the tie win over Thailand.

South Africa now face Chile to play off for position 17-18. With Chile defeating Morocco, this means that South Africa, regardless of the result will end up as the highest African team at this year’s championships, with Morocco fighting for 19th or 20th position.

Egypt were the third team from Africa at the championships but failed to qualify.

Photo: Vorster (left) and Jeska of South Africa in action during their mixed doubles rubber, supplied by Tennis South Africa

RESULTS
South Africa bt Thailand 2-1

Women’s Doubles
Bonnie Davidson/Helga Jeska (SA) lost to Chatmanee Jankiaw/Napaww Jankiaw (THA) 4-6 1-6

Men’s Doubles
Frans Ledwaba /Ryan Brookshaw (SA) bt Chayanin Puttaraksakul/Sakda Saewong (THA) 6-4 6-4

Mixed Doubles
Tucker Vorster/Helga Jeska (SA) bt Napaww Jankiaw/Chayanin Puttaraksak (THA) 6-1 7-5


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