The feat of Ane Mintegi on Thursday, with two victories in the same day to get into the quarterfinals of the junior tournament at Wimbledon, continued this Friday when the Gipuzkoan qualified for the first Grand Slam semifinals of her career by winning 7-6 (6) and 6-3 in the first turn of track 12 to the Belarusian Kristina Dmitruk, sixth seed. Mintegi will face the winner on Saturday 16-year-old Czech Linda Fruhvirtova, eighth seed. She is the first Spaniard to reach the penultimate round in London since Magüi Serna in 1996, later a finalist and defeated by Amelia Mauresmo.
Ane, 17 years old and a veteran of the majors juniors since she started participating at the age of 15 at Roland Garros 2019, did not accuse the fatigue of the beating of the previous day nor the sore that he had on his right heel and for which he was treated at the end of the first round. She placed 27 winners and remains as good as she knows to break her rival, who is 17 years old like her, four times. The first set, in fact, he could win it earlier when he served with 5-4, but in a tiebreaker that got him uphill, with set point for Dmitruk, he knew how to react and put himself ahead.
In the second set she went ahead again and had to do it again when the Belarusian answered with a counterbreak. She had the situation under control and this time the advantage did not escape her to the delight of herself, of her coach, Juan Lizariturry, with whom she works at the TEC Carlos Ferrer Salat in Barcelona, and her agent, Enric Molina, who encouraged her from the stands.
“I like how Nadal competes”
“The truth is that yesterday was a pretty hard day, with two two-hour games, in the end I got them playing quite well and today at the end I noticed that I was tired, but I played well”, says Mintegi, who enjoys in his free time “being with family, going out with friends …”. The Idiazábal tennis player is very satisfied with a performance that was not expected: “I am doing a very good tournament, because it is not the most suitable surface for my game. I’m competing very well, quite aggressive ”. Ane has as references “all the Spanish players”. “Carla Suárez, who has come out of a very difficult time and has returned to play the Grand Slams, Paula Badosa, who is doing a good job …”. And from the Big Three he stays “with Rafa Nadal, of course.” I like the way he competes, the way he acts ”.