Eastern

Big Apple International Cup 2019 Recap

June 18, 2019


Team Spain and Team USA both tasted sweet victory at USTA Eastern's second annual Big Apple International Cup, held June 3-7 at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. The best 12U and 14U tennis players from across the globe faced off during the weeklong round robin team event, with top squads from Brazil, Canada, Israel, Mexico all competing in addition to the two winning countries.

 

In the 12U division, Team USA and Team Spain went undefeated throughout the week, which meant the title would be decided when the two groups faced each other on the final day of competition. Through six matches the teams were dead even at 3-3, and Spain eventually won the tiebreaking mixed doubles match—on a no-ad deuce point—to capture the cup.

 

"We leave extremely happy with our 12U kids taking the trophy," said Roberto Bolivar, coach for Team Spain and Director of the Madrid Tennis Federation. "But the most important thing for us has been the great team experience and competitive matches we have had throughout the whole week. Our players had to play their best tennis on order to be competitive in every match"

 

Team USA had a more straightforward path to victory in the 14U division. They faced their closest competitors, Team Canada, on Day 4 and won five out of six matches, despite quality play from the Canadians who forced multiple tiebreakers. Team USA's Stephanie Yakoff was named the tournament MVP; the 2019 Easter Bowl semifinalist went 10-0 throughout the week, winning five singles matches and five in doubles.

 

Yakoff was undoubtedly impressed with her high level, but she also enjoyed the unique experience Big Apple Cup offered over the five days. "We get to talk with and play against people from other countries," Yakoff said. "Even when we go to sectionals or national tournaments, we're probably not going to get the chance to see these players as we do here." 

 

Her teammate, Cooper Williams, who has also represented the United States in ITF World Junior Tennis, agreed. "It is always positive to play kids from different countries, with different styles," Williams said. "It is definitely good for me as a player, [to] keep learning and improving."

 

Francisco Barrientos, coach of Team USA, echoed that sentiment and felt that the diversity of opponents would be highly beneficial to all of the participating players' development. "You really get exposure to international competition," he said. "You see how they think and how they play. And also the experience of representing a country makes it such a special tournament."

 

Click below to see photos from the event. For more in-depth scores, click here.

 

 

Day-by-Day Results:

 

Day 1

 

14U

USA bt. Israel (4-2)

Canada bt. Brazil (4-2)

Mexico bt. Spain (4-3)

 

12U

USA bt. Israel (6-0)

Brazil bt. Canada (5-1)

Spain bt. Mexico (4-2)

 

Day 2

 

14U

USA bt. Brazil (4-2)

Canada bt. Mexico (4-3)

Spain bt. Israel (4-2)

 

12U

USA bt. Brazil (6-0)

Mexico bt. Canada (5-1)

Spain bt. Israel (5-1)

 

Day 3

 

14U

USA bt. Mexico (6-0)

Israel bt. Brazil (4-2)

Canada bt. Spain (4-3)

 

12U

USA bt. Mexico (4-2)

Brazil bt. Israel (4-3)

Spain bt. Canada (5-1)

 

Day 4

 

14U

USA bt. Canada (5-1)

Spain bt. Brazil (4-2)

Mexico bt. Israel (4-2)

 

12U

USA bt. Canada (6-0)

Spain bt. Brazil (4-3)

Mexico bt. Israel (4-3)

 

Day 5

 

14U

USA bt. Spain (5-1)

Mexico bt. Brazil (4-2)

Canada bt. Israel (4-2)

 

12U

Spain bt. USA (4-3)

Mexico bt. Brazil (4-3)

Israel bt. Canada (5-1)

 

 

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