BAR SET HIGHER

Okutoyi sets sights on US Open after triumphant arrival

Okutoyi received a good luck message from Poland's world number one Iga Swiatek hours before the final in the doubles category.

In Summary

•The country's youngest Kenya Open champion, who has climbed four places up to 57 on the world rankings,  now says she will be targeting the top 50 come the end of the year.

•Okutoyi's golden run began at the Australian Junior Open in January where she reached the third round, beating Italian qualifier Federica Urgesi 6-4, 6-7 (5), 6-3 in the first round.

Angela Okutoyi displays her trophy in the presence of Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed on arrival from London
Angela Okutoyi displays her trophy in the presence of Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed on arrival from London
Image: DOUGLAS OKIDDY

Fresh from winning the junior doubles category at Wimbledon, Angela Okutoyi believes she has what it takes to go on a good run at the US Junior Open in New York in September.

Following a triumphant return to the country on Monday, the African junior champion said the win in Wimbledon has given her the push to improve her performance in the singles category at the Big Apple.

“My performance at Wimbledon has given me encouragement to do even better. I want to train hard and prepare well for the US Open,” added Okutoyi. 

The country's youngest Kenya Open champion, who has climbed four places up to 57 on the world rankings,  now says she will be targeting the top 50 come the end of the year.

"I want to improve on my ranking and be in the top 50. With tournaments coming fast and furious, I believe I have a good chance to do that,” she noted. 

The teen sensation teamed up with Anne Nijkamp of the Netherlands to win the doubles category in Wimbledon.

“She texted me on Instagram saying she had no partner and I said why not. The next day she told me we were in the main draw and from there, we just played. I hope we will continue our partnership in future tournaments,” she observed. 

Okutoyi received a good luck message from Poland's world number one  Iga Swiatek hours before the final in the doubles category.

“I had a chat with her and she encouraged me to go all out and enjoy myself,” she added. 

Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohammed, who received Okutoyi alongside other dignitaries, said they will have a meeting in the course of the week to see how they can support her. 

“We will have a meeting this week to see what we can do for her. She has done the country proud and put us on the map in tennis,” said Amina.

Okutoyi's golden run began at the Australian Junior Open in January where she reached the third round, beating Italian qualifier Federica Urgesi 6-4, 6-7 (5), 6-3 in the first round.

She then defeated Zara Larke of Australia 7-6 (7) 7-5, 6-1 in the second round. In the third round, she lost to Serbia's Lola Radivojevic 6-2, 6-3.

At the French Open Okutoyi beat Belgian Amelie Van Impe 7-6, 6-4  then bowed to top seed Petra Morcinko of Croatia 6-2, 6-4 in the second round.

Angela Okutoyi with Novak Djokovic at the Wimbledon Open
Angela Okutoyi with Novak Djokovic at the Wimbledon Open
Image: HANDOUT
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