tennis can

Toronto, October 1, 2015 – Both the Canadian boys’ and girls’ squads have advanced into the semifinals at the Junior Davis Cup and Fed Cup by BNP Paribas finals at La Caja Magica in Madrid thanks to victories in their last ties of the round-robin stage on Thursday. The Junior Davis Cup boys defeated Czech Republic 3-0 to maintain an undefeated record while Canada’s Junior Fed Cup team won 3-0 over Japan to finish first in its group.

The top-seeded team at this year’s Junior Davis Cup, Canada lived up to its billing by going 9-0 in round-robin play. Against Czech Republic, with the victor making the semifinals, Benjamin Sigouin got Canada off to a winning start by ousting Michael Vrbensky 6-0, 7-6(7). The team then officially earned the triumph when Felix Auger-Aliassime’s opponent Patrik Rikl retired due to injury with the Canadian leading 6-4, 1-6, 4-3. In the doubles, Sigouin and Denis Shapovalov paired up to post a 7-6(2), 3-6, 6-2 win against Vrbensky and Daniel Velek.

“We pulled through a very tough battle today although the final tie score may look easy,” Sigouin said. “Matches were very physical and our team managed to leave its heart on the court to clinch close victories. We are looking forward to another battle with the Russians in the semifinals. Just like every other day this week, our goal is to try and bring home two points.”

In their first two ties, Canada beat Poland 3-0 and Hong Kong 3-0. Securing the top position in Group A, the Canadian boys and team captain Oded Jacob will now take on Russia for a spot in the championship match.

Canada, seeded No. 4 in Junior Fed Cup, also needed a win over its opponent to emerge out of its group into the semifinals. The Canadian girls stepped up to the challenge, winning 3-0 over Japan without losing a set. Bianca Andreescu opened with 6-2, 6-2 victory opposite Mai Hontama before Charlotte Robillard-Millette secured her country the win with a 6-3, 6-2 triumph versus Kimika Sakata. With a semifinal berth already in hand, Andreescu and Vanessa Wong completed the sweep with a 6-3, 6-1 decision over Sakata and Ayumi Miyamoto.

“I feel really good, super excited,” Robillard-Millette said after clinching the win for her team. “I felt a little bit of pressure before the match because I really wanted the team to make it to the semis. It’s a great accomplishment. We’re ready for the semis and we’re really happy. We’re looking forward to it.”

Combined with a 3-0 win over Colombia and a 2-1 posting versus Great Britain, Canada finished atop Group B and will now face Czech Republic in the semifinals, to take place on Friday. The squad is led by captain Ralph Platz.

The Junior Davis Cup and Fed Cup by BNP Paribas is the international tennis team competition for the under-16 age category. A total of 168 teams from 94 countries took part in regional qualifying in 2015, with the top 15 teams and host Spain making it to this week’s Junior Davis Cup and Fed Cup finals. The finals are being played on clay at La CajaMagica, home of the combined ATP World Tour Masters 1000 and WTA Premier Mandatory Madrid Open.