Clervie Ngounoue reaches first junior Grand Slam final in Australia

Clervie Ngounoue in action during the 2021 Orange Bowl at the Veltri Tennis Center in Plantation, Florida.
January 27, 2022 03:00 PM

Another USTA Foundation Excellence Team product has the chance to play for a junior Grand Slam title. Five months after Robin Montgomery swept the girls' singles and doubles titles at the US Open, Clervie Ngounoue has advanced to the girls' doubles final at the Australian Open. 

Ngounoue and Diana Shnaider of Russia, the top seeds in the draw, only lost one set on their road to the final. They came from a set down to beat Americans Alexis Blokhina and Liv Hovde, the No. 8 seeds, in the quarterfinals, and later edged Aussie wild cards Charlotte Kempenaers-Pocz and Taylah Preston in the semifinals, 7-5, 7-6(5).

While Ngounoue is playing in her first Grand Slam final in her fourth major appearance in juniors, Shnaider is playing her third. The Russian won the 2021 junior Wimbledon title in doubles, and was also the doubles runner-up at the 2020 French Open. 

They'll face unseeded Canadians Kayla Cross and Victoria Mboko in the final, who've upset the No. 2 seeds and the No. 5 seeds in their own run in Melbourne.

 

 

Ngounoue is a product of the Metropolitan Tennis & Education Group (MTEG) National Junior Tennis and Learning (NJTL) chapter in Silver Spring, Md. in addition to the Excellence Team, and also trains at the famed Mouratoglou Academy in France. She came into the Australian Open ranked world No. 12 in juniors, two spots off of her career-high of world No. 10, and was also the No. 5 seed in singles, where she reached the second round. 

She is bidding to be the first American to win the Australian Open in girls' doubles since 2017, and just the fourth since 2010.

 

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