- Van Niekerk pays tribute to triumphant Bolt
- Banyana dominate but go down to Ghana in playoff
- Blitzboks bag three wins in Dubai
- International honours for Olympic coach Barrow
- Hall of Fame honours for SA legend Sally Little
- Blitzboks off to a great start with Ugandan whitewash
- Banyana going all out to bag bronze in Cameroon
- Powell opts for experience at Dubai Sevens
- First IGT Tour win for Arnoldi at Centurion
- SA wheelchair tennis rocked by tragedy
Els and Venter are buoyant in Bloem
- Updated: October 8, 2015
South African top seeds Leon Els and Mariska Venter were crowned champions of the ACSA Bloem Open in Mangaung on Wednesday.
In an incredible men’s final, Els beat Austria’s Nico Langmann to win 3-6 7-6 (10) 6-2 at the Oud Studente Tennis Club.
Taking the court for more than three hours, Els and Langmann delivered two of the best sets of tennis this tournament has seen. The Austrian took the first set 3-6 and when there was drama at 5-5 in the second set as Els’ chair broke.
The top seed admitted to getting nervous but still raced to a blistering three-set victory. ‘This match was very tough, in the first set I was a little bit nervous and stiff and got frustrated when my chair broke,’ said Els. ‘I then had to borrow someone’s chair, which I wasn’t used to but I made it work for me to close the second set and quickly clinched the deciding set 6-2,’ he continued.
‘I’m very happy with my performance and it really means the world to me being able to win three Futures tournament titles in a row,’ Els said.
In the women’s tournament, Venter enjoyed a double-win in Mangaung. The former world No1 junior dethroned her doubles partner Thando Hlatswayo in the women’s singles final clash 6-1 6-2 to clinch her first Bloem Open title.
Venter said she played to her best potential in the tournament and was thrilled to take title for the first time. ‘It was really good, I enjoyed the tournament and very pleased with my performance,’ said Venter.
Another South African to capture a title was Bongani Dlamini, who demolished compatriot and second-seed Danny Mohlamonyane 6-3 7-5 to secure the quads singles title.
The country’s top junior player Alwande Skhosana took less than an hour to defeat Mpho Mhlongo 6-1 6-0 for the boys’ singles title and Nokwanda Hlongwane denies fourth seed Wendy Hlongwane the girls’ singles title. Nokwande beat Hlongwane 6-2 6-3 to clinch the title.