The Growthpoint Junior National Championships came to a thrilling conclusion on Tuesday, after six days of intense tennis action.
The tournament, which was held in Mangaung, showcased the best of South Africa's up-and-coming tennis players, with top seed Kaitlyn Ramduth and second seed Rudiger Dusselberg emerging as the winners of the girls and boys under-18 singles categories, respectively.
In the girls' under-18 singles final, top seed Ramduth of KwaZulu-Natal claimed her second title in two weeks, defeating fifth seed Hanmaré MC Aslin of Western Cape in a battle that lasted for two hours and twenty-eight minutes.
Despite facing a few challenges during the match, Ramduth managed to maintain her composure and clinch the victory with a 7-6(2), 6-4 win.
"This is a really big achievement. I've never done something like this before. It was the goal, it has always been the goal, and I'm really happy that the hard work is paying off because I've been working hard and I'm glad to see it," said Ramduth, reflecting on her win.
In the boys' under-18 singles final, Dusselberg of Gauteng claimed the title after defeating an impressive opponent Cornel Liebenberg in a closely contested match.
Despite starting off shaky and not playing the way he wanted, Dusselberg managed to keep fighting and ultimately emerged victorious with a 2-6, 7-6(5), 6-2 win.
Dusselberg was proud of his double win as he also bagged the Free State Growthpoint Super 8 last week, saying, "I'm very proud to have won both the tournaments; it's a big confidence boost. I started off shaky, I didn't play the way I wanted, but I got through it, I kept on fighting, and I believed I was gonna win. It was a surprise to everyone that I won the match, so I'm feeling good and confident."
In addition to the under-18 singles titles, the tournament also featured several other categories, with Donna Le Roux from Free State winning the under-16 girls' singles, Jahnie Van Zyl from North-West winning the under-14 girls' singles, and Lily Haley from KwaZulu-Natal winning the under-12 girls' singles.
On the boys' side, Reuben De Klerk from North-West won the under-16 boys' singles, JP Snyman from Mpumalanga won the under-14 boys' singles, and Juvan Van Pletzen from North-West won the under-12 boys' singles.
 Kaitlyn Ramduth (KZN) def.  Hanmaré MC Aslin (WC) 7-6(2), 6-4
 Donna Le Roux (FS) def.  Allegra van der Walt (GP) 6-1, 6-2
 Jahnie Van Zyl (NW) def.  Alicia Taylor (WC) 6-2, 6-4
 Lily Haley (KZN) def.  Megan Van Vuuren (WC) 4-6, 7-5, 7-6
 Rudiger Dusselberg (GP) def.  Cornel Liebenberg (FS) 2-6, 7-6(5), 6-2
 Reuben De Klerk (NW) def.  John Bothma (KZN) 6-1, 6-1
 JP Snyman (MP) def. Israel Dowie (WC) 6-3, 6-4
 Juvan Van Pletzen (NW) def.  Nathan Herbert (FS) 6-2, 6-1