Gentle defeats Kalekyezi to win the GTA One Guyana Open Ladies’ Title
Afruica Gentle defeated the Girls 18 champion and No. 2 seed Paula Kalekyezi 6/4 – 6/2 to become the first Guyana Tennis Association (GTA) One Guyana Open Ladies’ Singles Champion.
The victory netted Gentle her fourth Ladies’ Singles Title.
“This win wasn’t just for me. It was also for my dad, who passed away last month. Tennis meant a lot to him, and it meant a lot to me. I know this is something he would’ve wanted,” Gentle said.
Gentle finished the fortnight without losing a set, defeating two Ladies’ Singles champions.
From the start, both players displayed their confident and aggressive baseline game, with Kalekyezi breaking Gentle’s serve in the second game of the first set to take a 2/0 lead. Gentle used her power and clutch serving to keep Kalekyezi at bay to win the next four games.
Trailing 2/4, Kalekyezi began to unravel Gentle’s offense with persistent baseline defense to win the next two games and level the match.
The four-time Ladies’ champion responded by firing winners from both sides to break Kalekyezi’s serve for the third time in the first set. Gentle held serve comfortably at 5/4 to win the opening set and maintained that momentum to seal the win in an hour and 20 minutes.
“Thank you to everyone who supported the GTA One Guyana Open 2023 Tournament. I think this tournament was a big success,” the four-time Ladies’ champ said.
“Kudos to the GTA, the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sport, and Minister Charles Ramson. Jr for making this tournament happen. I hope there are many more tournaments like these to come because it will help with junior development.”
The GTA One Guyana Open 2023 Tournament will conclude on Sunday, with the Men’s Open Final between two former Men’s champions – No.2 seed Gavin Lewis and Phillip Squires.
The match will be played at 14:30 hrs. at the National Racquet Centre, Woolford Avenue.
The GTA One Guyana Open 2023 Tournament is a pillar of the emerging National Sports Academy, an initiative funded by the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sport.