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Octave thrilled to stun top seed and reach final

 

Lucy Octave
Lucy Octave

By John Flack

Lucy Octave sensationally dumped top seed and defending champion Jessica Leeman out of the Ulster Open at the semi-final stage last night to stay on course for a fourth title at the Boat Club tournament.

The unseeded Donaghadee player's 4-6 6-4 7-6 comeback win over the Hawarden teenager was made all the more remarkable by the fact she spent 10 months out of action due to double hip surgery and only made her comeback a few months ago.

Octave will face second seed Caitlin McCullough in today's decider after the Windsor player defeated her twin sister Annie 6-4 6-4 in last night's other semi-final.

Caitlin will be bidding for her first Ulster Open triumph, having retained her North of Ireland title in Hillsborough last week.

Octave was pleasantly surprised by her victory which came against the odds after her long injury lay-off.

The 21-year-old said: "It was a really tight match, as the scoreline suggests, and it could have gone either way, but I'm delighted to have got through and have the chance of landing another title.

"It's been a couple of years since I last played Caitlin and I expect it to be a really tough match and hopefully a good one."

The men's semis went with the seedings as Jordan McKeown beat Alex Watt 6-3 6-3 to stay in contention for a third consecutive title as he prepares to face second-ranked Caleb Ralston, who beat Cian McDonnell 7-5 6-2.

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