IT wasn’t the victory he was looking for, but Luke Petraglia still came away from the 2013 Tennis NSW New South Wales Cup a winner.
Kicking off the gold ranked junior tournament with one of the tougher draws, the Orange tennis ace went down to number two seed Mayez Elrich 6-1, 6-2 in the first round.
Then forced to shift to the consolation side of the draw, Petraglia served up a six-game winning run that netted the 16-year-old a consolation final victory and the overall ranking of five following the junior tournament.
While disappointed not to have knocked off Elrich in the opening round of the Homebush-based event, Petraglia was rapt to have come out on top of the best players to not make the Cup’s semi-finals.
“It was unfortunate but it was a good match,” Petraglia said looking back to that loss to Elrich.
“He went on to make the final and actually said (round one) was the toughest match he played. That felt good.”
A member of the Central West High Performance unit, Petraglia believes the step up in competition was noticeable.
The fact he was able to come out on top was pleasing.
“I played a few tough matches. I just tried to play my best each game.
“The consolation draw was better than a lot of main draws at some places,” he said.
“The tournament was the toughest this year.
“I didn’t play my best but I did enough to win.”
In the consolation draw, Petraglia defeated Jayden Murace 6-3, 6-0, Akinori Wada 6-2, 7-6, Daniel Stormon 6-1, 6-4 before edging the number seven seed Bjorn Myers 6-2, 6-1 in the consolation semi-final and number five seed Bosko Novakovic in a thrilling final, storming home from one set down to win 4-6, 7-6, 10-5 in a super tie-break.
Coach Stuart Thompson said seeing Petraglia better all bar four of the Australia’s best juniors was a wonderful sign of the Orange product’s potential.
“It was a good challenge. These are the best kids in the country,” he said, adding the final was the young gun’s toughest game to date.
“He lost the first and was down in the second and came back. It was a really good effort and probably his best result. It’ll be the most points he has been awarded, which will improve his ranking hugely.
“The whole year we’ve been building towards this one and it’ll now allow him to play in the nationals at the end of the year in Melbourne.
“We’re hoping for top eight, top 16 finish.”