Muir takes Gold at U17 Spanish Open

There was Scottish interest in the Andalusian U17 Spanish Open held in Benalmadena from 11-13 February, with Iona Muir and Callan Short participating in  their first U17 competition on the European circuit.

Dundee’s Short progressed to the third round, knocking out the 12th seed in the process, before coming undone against the excellent Harper Leigh from Wales, who would go on to reach the semi-finals before losing out to the eventual winner. Short and Leigh would then pair up for the men’s doubles, losing in the second round to a strong French pair.

Muir, who recently celebrated her 15th birthday, got a belated birthday present as she unexpectedly triumphed in women’s singles. Her route to the final saw her face tough competition from Germany, Ireland, Spain, Norway and Russia before facing off against the fifth seed, Mariela Vasquez from Spain, in front of a partisan home crowd.

A tense first set went in favour of Muir 21-19 who then built a big lead in the second set only to let it slip before losing 20-22. The final set was a much more comfortable affair which saw Muir race to an 11-3 lead at the interval before holding out to win the final set 21-11.

Muir and Short teamed up for the mixed doubles and recorded wins against German and Israeli opposition before succumbing to the sixth seeds from Germany in the third round. In the women’s doubles, Muir and Irish partner Michelle Shochan came agonisingly close to knocking out the first seeds, having served for the match, before eventually losing 21-23 in the quarter finals.

Both players commented on how much they enjoyed the experience and are looking forward to challenging at other European events in the coming months with Muir looking to return to Benalmadena next year to defend the title!

Full results can be found here.