ROSS STRIKES AT HIS FIRST INTERNATIONAL TOURNAMENT
"Bubbling over" would be the best two words to describe 12-year-old Gianni Ross after his 6-3 6-1 victory over eighth seed Matias Soto Carmona of Chile to win the boys Under-12 event at the NJT International Masters on Tuesday.
"I feel really, really good. This is the best moment of my life so far!"
The match was a lot closer than the score suggests as many of the games were very close. In fact it could very have been the third game of the match that had a say in the outcome. The Chilean held a 2-0 lead in the opening set had Ross at 15-40 on his serve. Had Soto Carmona taken one of those break points to hold a 3-0 lead the match could have taken a very different turn. However, Ross managed to hold and broke immediately to level at 2-2.
"From 0-2 I was extremely nervous. I don’t know how anybody could not be nervous in a match like this. But when I managed to hold serve, that’s when my nerve changed.
"He’s a very good player and I did not expect to have this score line. I was hoping to win but I was thinking of a very bad future. I had to play my best just to win points but once I started running and hitting the ball, I knew I could win."
The second pivotal point came with Ross leading 4-3. Soto Carmona had a chance to hold serve but three solid points from the American gave him the vital break and he served out to take the set. When the Chilean lost his serve again in the opening game of the second set the momentum was fully with Ross. The match was played in gusty conditions but it was Ross who handled them the better of the two.
This was Ross’ first international tournament and he came away with a victory. "I think it is a good start. If I improve my mental ability, I feel that I could do more. On court I went up a couple of notches so I think that I can play at a high level."
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