Bjorn Thomson continues to belie odds at Irish Open

Seventeen-year-old defeats Britain’s Jamie Whiteford to reach semi-final

The FBD Insurance Irish Men’s Tennis Open continues at Fitzwilliam LTC. Photograph: Inpho.

The FBD Insurance Irish Men’s Tennis Open continues at Fitzwilliam LTC. Photograph: Inpho.

 
Bjorn Thomson

Fitzwilliam when he beat Jamie Whiteford to reach the semi-finals.

Thomson, whose competition began on Sunday in the qualifying rounds, beat the British player 3-6, 6-2, 6-3.

Whiteford broke the Irishman’s serve twice early on enabling him to take the first set 6-3.

The second set was a different matter, however, as Thomson reeled off the first four games playing some excellent tennis with his backhand particularly effective as he took the game to his higher ranked opponent.

Thomson, aged just 17, was moving much better and his excellent retrieving game forced plenty of errors from Whiteford as the Irishman closed out the set 6-2.

The opening five games of the deciding set went with serve before Thomson gained a crucial break when Whiteford hit a forehand out. Thomson kept his nerve winning the set 6-3.

Thomson will play Lloyd Glasspool in the semi-finals who who beat the fifth seed Mick Lescure 7-6, 6-1.

There was disappointment for Ireland’s Sam Barry when he lost to Dan Evans of Britain. Evans, who has played three times at Wimbledon, had a comfortable 6-3, 6-3 win.

Service game

Barry gained a break of serve early in the second set to lead 3-1 when the English player hit a sliced backhand long but the Irish number two could not build on this opportunity as Evans reeled off five games in a row to win the set 6-3.

Evans will play his fellow countryman Daniel Smethurst in the quarter-finals.

The doubles finals takes place on Friday evening with all four Irish players involved. Sam Barry and David O’Hare play Bjorn Thomson and Simon Carr, who is a son of former Dublin player and manager Tommy Carr.

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