Okutoyi writes history as she lifts Wimbledon doubles junior title

Kenya's Angela Okutoyi (right) and her Dutch partner Rose Marie Nijkamp after winning the Wimbledon Open doubles Junior Championships at the grass courts of All England Lawn Tennis Club, in London, England on July 9 2022. [Courtesy]

Tennis sensation Angela Okutoyi made history yesterday after claiming a Grand Slam trophy.

Okutoyi and her partner Rose Marie Nijkamp from the Netherlands came from behind to defeat Canadians Kayla Cross and Victoria Mboko 3-6, 6-4, 11-9 in the final of Wimbledon Open doubles Junior Championships at the grass courts of All England Lawn Tennis Club in London, UK.

The duo started the final on the back foot after losing the first set 6-3 against the Canadians.

However, they recovered in the second set, winning it 6-4. The Kenya seed one and the Dutch would seal the win with an 11-9 victory in the tiebreaker against the fourth-seeded Canadians.

Okutoyi now surpasses other Kenyans who have competed at Wimbledon namely Christian Vitulli and Paul Wekesa.

Vitulli reached the boys doubles quarterfinals in 2006, while Wekesa was eliminated in the men’s singles first round in 1996.

Okutoyi grabbed the headlines on Friday after becoming the first ever Kenyan player to make it to the finals of a Grand Slam tournament.

Okutoyi and Nijkamp came from behind in both sets to knock out third-seed Lucija Ciric Bagaric (Croatia) and Nikola Daubnerova (Slovakia) 6-3, 6-4 to qualify for the final.

Okutoyi had shifted her focus to the doubles after her singles run in the tournament ended in the very first round of the main draw.

The 2020 African Junior tennis champion fell to a 6-3, 6-2 defeat against Canada’s Mia Kupres.

In May, Okutoyi made history after progressing to the second round of the JA Roland Garros (French Open Juniors).

She then became the first Kenya to win a Grand Slam match at the French Open after defeating 17-year-old Amelie Van Impe from Belgium 7-6, 6-4 to progress to the second round.

In April, Okutoyi lost her Africa U-18 crown after being stunned by South African Leigh Van Zyl in the semis during the JB2 Sousse tournament in Tunisia

By Ochieng Oyugi Nov. 30, 2022
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