SWEENY, GIBSON CLAIM CALOUNDRA TITLES





[2] Talia Gibson (AUS) def [1] Destanee Aiava (AUS) 7-6(4), 6-4


18-year-old Australian Talia Gibson has won her second professional singles title this week, taking out the 15K event in Caloundra.

Gibson dominated the women’s draw and did not drop a set all week to claim her second consecutive title.

The Aussie from Perth last played in Santa Fe where she won her maiden title, and after a short break from the tour, Gibson has now extended her winning streak to ten matches.

The streak included a hard-fought finals victory over Destanee Aiava, where Gibson came from a break down in the opening set to claim the title.

Aiava also enjoyed a strong week, reaching her first singles final in over two years, in just her first week back on tour after almost four months away.

When their WTA ranking points are added next week, both women will make a placement jump, with Aiava going back inside the top 500 and Gibson up to approximately 605.

[Q] Dane Sweeny (AUS) def [6] Thomas Fancutt (AUS) 6-3, 6-4

21-year-old Australian Dane Sweeny was the last man standing on the men’s side in Caloundra, claiming his third singles title of the year.

Sweeny, who has recently been given some opportunity at ATP Challenger level, made a late call to play the smaller event back home and was therefore forced to come through qualifying.

The only top 500 ranked player in either the men’s or women’s event eased his way into the main draw and ultimately won eight consecutive matches to lift the trophy.

Sweeny’s consistent and movement-based game style set him apart from his opponents at this level and the Aussie will hopefully be able to build some confidence in his game, before heading back to a higher standard.

It was also a successful week for Fancutt who overcame second seed Dayne Kelly and fourth seed Colin Sinclair to reach his fifth ITF singles final.

The addition of points next week should see Fancutt move inside the top 600 and Sweeny make his ATP top 350 debut.

Outside Australia, a host of other Aussies enjoyed strong weeks across the globe on the ITF tour.

24-year-old Kimberly Birrell reached her sixth professional singles final and first since 2018 at the 25K event in Portugal.

Birrell entered the event unseeded but managed to overcome two of the draw’s top eight players in straight sets, on her way to the final.

The Aussie, who has been ranked as high as 154 in the world, ultimately fell to top seed Jamie Loeb in the decider, but will no doubt but extremely content with her week.

Having reached an ITF semi-final last week, Birrell will now rise up 80 ranking places in a fortnight to world number 362, when points are updated.

Also in Portugal, 23-year-old Australian Alexandra Bozovic has won her maiden professional title in any format, taking home a 25K doubles trophy alongside Francisca Jorge.

Bozovic had previously lost all eight of her ITF finals across singles and doubles but was finally able to break the drought this week .

However, the title did not come easy, with Bozovic and Jorge winning their semi-final 10-7 in a deciding tiebreak before coming through the final 12-10 in the same fashion.

Australian Adam Walton also continued his strong ITF from, reaching another singles semi-final in Mexico.

Walton’s quarterfinal win made it a remarkable fifteen consecutive victories, before his run came to an end at the hands of fifth seed Matias Soto.