French Open Tennis

French Open Juniors 2023: Contenders, Odds, and Predictions

With the French Open heading into its second week, there’s another event that kicks off this week. Although Juniors grand slam events have not been as popular as they should be, they are breeding grounds for the next generation of tennis stars. Bearing that in mind, 128 players will be on a quest to win their first Roland Garros Juniors title this week; 64 on the boys side and 64 on the girls side. Who will be left standing when it’s all said and done?

Roland Garros Juniors – Daily Updates

Finals Preview

We would like to start by pointing out that the top three seeds on the girls’ side were Sara Saito, Clervie Ngounoue and Alina Korneeva. Interestingly, although only one of these players made it through to the singles final, all three top seeds will participate in the doubles final today. The doubles pair of Alina Korneeva/Sara Saito will take on Tyra Caterina Grant/Clervie Ngounoue in the Roland Garros Juniors doubles final. That said, the singles final will feature two seeded players, as number 3 seed Alina Korneeva takes on sixth seeded Lucciana Perez Alarcon. Both players have been dominant in this tournament; as they’ve both surrendered just one set en route to the final. However, Alina Korneeva has won 10 sets in a row ahead of this tie; she is eyeing her second consecutive juniors grand slam title, having won the Australian Open singles title in January.

On the other hand, Rodrigo Pacheco Mendez was the top seeded player on the boys’ side; and although he crashed out of the singles event in the first round, the Mexican player will feature in the doubles final alongside seventh seeded Yaroslav Demin. These players will battle the unseeded Italian pair of Lorenzo Sciahbasi and Gabriele Vulpitta for the doubles title later today. Keeping that in mind, the singles final pits third seeded Dino Prizmic against Juan Carlos Prado Angelo, who was seeded eighth ahead of this competition. Like the girls’ side, both of our finalists dropped just one set on their way to the final. While Prizmic has won six consecutive sets ahead of this clash, Prado Angelo has won 10 sets in a row.

Day 1

Some of the top seeded players on the girls’ side didn’t have too much trouble winning their first round matches. Top seeded Sara Saito cruised through a 6-3, 6-0 victory over Mpetshi Perricard, while Clervie Ngounoue defeated Lucie Pawlak 6-3, 6-1. However, Alina Korneeva had to fight her way back into the match, after losing the first set to Ella Seidel. There were a few seeded players who crashed out on day 1, including Ranah Akua Stoiber, Federica Urgesi and Luciana Moyano.

On the boys’ side, Dino Prizmic defeated Jangjun Kim in straight sets, Alexander Blockx required three sets in order to defeat Kyle Kang. Like the girls’ side, a couple of seeded players exited on the first day. 11th seed Oliver Ojakaar was injured during the third set of his clash with Maxwell Exsted, and had to retire. Federico Bondioli also lost in straight sets to Learner Tien.

Day 2

Although top seed Sara Saito ended her streak of losing in the first round of Juniors grand slams, she didn’t fare too well on day 2. The Japanese player suffered a three-sets loss to Melissa Ercan. On the other hand, it was business as usual for Alina Korneeva and Clervie Ngounoue, as both players cruised through in straight sets. Unfortunately, fifth seeded Sayaka Ishii was knocked out by Teodora Kostovic in straight sets, while Ella McDonald lost to Alevtina Ibragimova.

Just like the girls’ side, the top seeded player on the boys’ side couldn’t get past the second round; as Rodrigo Pacheco Mendez fell to Darwin Blanch in straight sets. Likewise, Yaroslav Demin and Arthur Gea, who were seeded seventh and 16th respectively, crashed out on Monday. However, Alexander Blockx and Dino Prizmic didn’t have too much trouble dispatching their opponents, as they both won in straight sets.

Day 3

A couple of seeded players couldn’t get past their opponents on Tuesday. Kaitlin Quevedo, who was the fourth seed in this tournament lost to Rebecca Munk Mortensen in straight sets. Although 12th seeded Ena Koike raced to a 6-0 victory in the first set, she ultimately lost to Anastasiia Gureva in three sets. Similarly, 15th seeded Vlada Mincheva suffered a straight sets loss to Charo Esquiva Banuls.

On the other hand, all but one of the seeded players on the boys’ side made it through to the next round. The only casualty was 12th seeded Rei Sakamoto, who lost in straight sets at the hands of 18 year old Jan Hradzil. There were five other seeded players who featured on Tuesday, and they all won their respective matches in straight sets.

Day 4

As usual, the top two remaining seeds didn’t have too much trouble defeating their opponents. Alina Korneeva knocked out Emerson Jones 6-1, 6-1, while Clervie Ngounoue cruised through a 6-1, 6-2 victory over Iva Ivanova. Furthermore, eighth seeded Mayu Crossley met 11th seeded Tereza Valentova on Wednesday; and despite Valentova’s best efforts, she fell to Crossley in straight sets. Renata Jamrichova was the other seeded player who exited on day 4, as the seventh seed lost to Anastasiia Gureva in straight sets.

Third seeded Dino Prizmic started slow against Maxim Mrva; and because of this, he lost the first set to his Czech opponent. The Croatian player started to find his stride in the second set, and eventually emerged victorious in three sets, 4-6, 6-1, 6-0. Things didn’t turn out too well for Australian Open champion Alexander Blockx however, as he had to retire due to an injury, after losing the first set to Learner Tien. Interestingly, two seeded players went toe-to-toe with each other on Wednesday, as fifth seed Iliyan Radulov and 10th seed Joao Fonseca locked horns in the round of 16. Although the Bulgarian player won the first set, it was Joao Fonseca who came out on top in three sets. Another seeded player who lost on Wednesday was Adriano Dzhenev, who lost to Darwin Blanch in three sets.

Day 5

It was business as usual for Alina Korneeva, as she knocked out eighth seeded Mayu Crossley in straight sets. She is undefeated in both singles and doubles, and will feature in both semi-finals on Friday, with Sara Saito being her doubles partner. Unfortunately, second seeded Clervie Ngounoue’s journey came to an end as she lost to Alisa Oktiabreva in straight sets. It’s worth mentioning that Oktiabreva came through the qualifying rounds, but made it all the way to the semi-finals. Moreover, sixth seeded Lucciana Perez Alarcon lost the first set to Alevtina Ibragimova; she had to claw her way back into the match, ultimately winning in straight sets. Interestingly, the other quarter-final fixture featured two unseeded players. Anastasiia Gureva and Rebecca Munk Mortensen went up against each other on Thursday, and it was Gureva who won in three sets.

Learner Tien continued his fine form in this tournament. The American player knocked out two seeded players in the first three rounds, including Australian Open Juniors champion Alexander Blockx; he took on 10th seed Joao Fonseca in the quarter-final, and emerged victorious in straight sets, earning his place in the semi-final. Likewise, Darwin Blanch had beaten top seeded Rodrigo Pacheco Mendez and 14th seed Adriano Dzhenev in the first three rounds; he took on eighth seeded Cooper Williams in the quarter-final, winning in three sets. On the other hand, Dino Prizmic came up clutch against Henry Searle, defeating the Brit in straight sets. In the other quarter-final fixture, Juan Carlos Prado Angelo and Joel Josef Scwarzler, two seeded players drew swords on Thursday. It was eighth-seeded Prado Angelo who emerged victorious in two sets.

Day 6

Alina Korneeva took on Alisa Oktiabreva, who had beaten second seeded Clervie Ngounoue in the previous round. Despite Oktiabreva’s best efforts, she was no match for the reigning Australian Open Juniors champion; as Korneeva cruised through a comfortable 6-1, 6-1 victory, booking her place in her second consecutive juniors grand slam final. In the other girls’ semi-final, Lucciana Perez Alarcon squared off against Anastasiia Gureva. The latter had knocked out two seeded players in this tournament; and as expected, she gave Perez Alarcon a tough time. However, the sixth seeded Peruvian player emerged victorious in two tight sets, 7-6, 7-5. With that in mind, all the unseeded players have now been eliminated from this tournament.

It’s important to point out that two American players reached the semi-final of the Roland Garros Juniors event on the boys side, and both were unseeded. Interestingly, these players had knocked out three seeded players in their first four matches, and were scheduled to meet their fourth seeded player in five rounds. Darwin Blanch took on third seeded Dino Prizmic, while Learner Tien faced Juan Carlos Prado Angelo. It’s fair to point out that these players had knocked out either of the top two seeds on the boys side; however, both players fell short in the last four, as Tien lost to Prado Angelo in straight sets, while Darwin Blanch suffered a straight sets loss to Dino Prizmic. Like the girls’ side, there are no unseeded players left in this competition.

Who Will Feature in the French Open 2023 Juniors Event?

These are the top seeded players in this year’s French Open Juniors event:

Rodrigo Pacheco Mendez (1)

Top seeded Rodrigo Pacheco Mendez was a quarterfinalist at the Roland Garros Boys event last year; he has featured in a few Challenger tournaments over the past couple of months. It’s worth mentioning that the Mexican player hasn’t enjoyed his best form ahead of this tournament; as he suffered four losses in five matches prior to this competition.

Alexander Blockx (2)

Alexander Blockx kissing AO Juniors trophy

On the other hand, Alexander Blockx kicked off his 2023 campaign on a high note; he reached the finals of both the Australian Open Juniors singles and doubles events, winning the singles title. The Belgian player has participated in a few ITF tournaments since then. He advanced to the final of the Sharm ElSheikh ITF title in Egypt, losing to Saba Purtseladze in straight sets. Blockx is on a quest to win back-to-back Juniors grand slam titles.

Dino Prizmic (3)

Dino Prizmic is a player who is currently ranked inside the top 300 on the ATP rankings. The 17 year old player was on a 19 match winning streak at some point this year, winning three consecutive ITF titles in the process. It’s worth mentioning that Prizmic advanced to the semi-final of this event last year, where he lost to eventual champion Gabriel Debru in three sets; it’ll be interesting to see how far the Croatian player will go in this tournament.

Sara Saito (1)

On the other hand, Sara Saito is the top seeded player on the women’s side. However, it’s important to point out that she didn’t fare well in last year’s event, or any of the last four Juniors grand slams for that matter. Interestingly, Saito featured in this year’s Australian Open Juniors event, as well as the French, Wimbledon and US Open events last year; she crashed out of all those competitions in the first round. Perhaps the Japanese player will go further than the first round, being the highest seeded player in this tournament.

Clervie Ngounoue (2)

We would like to point out that Clervie Ngounoue won the Australian Open Juniors doubles title alongside Diana Shnaider last year. However, she hasn’t enjoyed the same success in singles. The American player’s best outing in singles was a quarter-final berth at the US Open Juniors event last year; she participated in this tournament two years ago, exiting in the second round. Ngounoue is the second-highest seeded player in this year’s Roland Garros Juniors event.

Alina Korneeva (3)

Despite being the third seed, Alina Korneeva has a Juniors grand slam title to her name. She emerged victorious at this year’s Australian Open Girls event, defeating compatriot Mirra Andreeva in the final. Over the past seven months, Korneeva has also won two ITF titles; she has beaten professionals like Timea Babos, Chloe Paquet and Daria Snigur in that stretch.

Roland Garros Juniors – Defending Champions

These are the players who won the Roland Garros Juniors titles last year:

Gabriel Debru

Gabriel Debru Juniors title

It’s important to point out that Gabriel Debru featured in the qualifying rounds of the French Open main event last year, but crashed out of the second round of qualies. The French player proceeded to play in the Juniors event, where he had a flawless performance, surrendering just one set en route to the title. Interestingly, Debru participated in the qualifying rounds of this year’s main event; however, he exited in the first qualifying round at the hands of Nick Hardt.

Lucie Havlickova

Lucie Havlickova Juniors title

Unlike Debru, Lucie Havlickova did not participate in the French Open qualies last year, or this year for that matter. However, she didn’t just win the Roland Garros girls singles title last year, the Czech player also won the doubles title alongside compatriot Sara Bejlek. Like Gabriel Debru, Lucie Havlickova will not play in this year’s Juniors event.

French Open Juniors – Previous Champions

There’s a long list of former French Open Juniors champions, and some of those players went on to win the Roland Garros main event. Notable former French Open Juniors champions include:

  • Ivan Lendl
  • Mats Wilander
  • Stefan Edberg
  • Stan Wawrinka
  • Gael Monfils
  • Marin Cilic
  • Andrey Rublev
  • Holger Rune
  • Martina Hingis
  • Amelie Mauresmo
  • Justine Henin
  • Agnieszka Radwanska
  • Simona Halep
  • Elina Svitolina
  • Ons Jabeur
  • Belinda Bencic
  • Daria Kasatkina
  • Paula Badosa
  • Coco Gauff
  • Leylah Annie Fernandez

Frequently Asked Questions About the French Open Juniors

2022 French Open Juniors Girls finalists

  • How many seeded players are in this tournament? There are 16 seeded players on the boys side, as well as 16 on the girls side.
  • Who won the French Open Men’s Juniors title last year? Gabriel Debru is the defending champion on the boys side.
  • Who won the French Open Women’s Juniors title last year? Lucie Havlickova is the defending champion on the girls side.
  • Has any player ever won both the French Open Juniors title as well as the main event? Yes. A few players who won the French Open Boys/Girls title went on to win the Men/Women’s event.
  • Has any player ever won all four grand slam Juniors titles in the same year? A few players came close, but only Stefan Edberg achieved this feat in 1983.

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