Sat, Jan 26, 2008 - Page 20 News List

Future star Yang sets Melbourne alight


Young Taiwanese star Yang Tsung-hua, now playing at the Australian Open, is pictured in Kaohsiung on Nov. 13.


Taiwan may well have a new tennis superstar in the making, and Melbourne witnessed just what he can do yesterday.

In the boys' singles competition at the Australian Open, 16-year-old tenth seed Yang Tsung-hua (楊宗樺) beat fourth seed Ryan Harrison of the US in straight sets, 6-4, 7-6 (9-7) in the semi-finals. He will meet fifth seed Bernard Tomic of Australia, who beat Yuki Bhambri of India 6-0, 5-7, 6-1, in today's final.

Yang, who has just been named in Taiwan's Davis Cup team, broke Harrison's serve in the first game of the match, and then held his serve to take the set 6-4.

In the second set, both players held their serves until the eighth game, when Harrison broke Yang, only for Yang to break back in the following game, setting up a tie break. At 6-7 down in the tie break, Yang won both his serves to lead 8-7 and then immediately converted his first match point to take the tie breaker 9-7.

Yang then powered his way to the final by taking a one-sided third set 6-1 against a wilting Harrison.

Once Yang had completed that victory, he joined up with doubles partner Hsieh Cheng-peng (謝正鵬) to triumph in the boys' doubles tournament. They beat the second seeds, Vasek Pospisil of Canada and Cesar Ramirez of Mexico, 3-6, 7-5, 10-5.

In the first set, both pairs held their serves through the sixth game. In the seventh Hsieh was broken, as was Yang in the ninth, giving their opponents a one set lead.

In the second set, Ramirez lost his serve at 5-6, handing Hsieh and Yang the second set.

The third set was the first pair to 10 games and Hsieh and Yang quickly took command, rushing to an 8-2 lead before finally winning the set 10-5.

Although Taiwan's Yi Chu-huan (易楚寰) won the boys' doubles together with South Korean Kim Sun-yong at the 2005 Australian Open, this win marks the first time an all-Taiwanese team has won a doubles championship of this stature.

Yang will be looking to better that in tomorrow afternoon's singles final. Either way, it looks like the start of a very promising career.

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