Tyler Smith advanced to the quarterfinals in the Bank of Bermuda ITF Junior Circuit Tournament with a win over American Elizabeth Norman at the W.E.R. Joell Tennis Stadium.
While a final score of 6-4, 6-3 typically signals an easy victory, both sets were a battle for Smith as she came from behind to take both.
“The first game was good, I started off well, but then I lost my focus and she went up on me 4-2,” Smith told theBermuda Sun. “I started getting myself together again and managed to win the first one 6-4.”
Norman proved a worthy opponent as she kept Tyler running through the early part of the first set. But losing 2-4, Smith refocused herself and was able to blast through the next four sets, highlighted by a picture-perfect serve that Norman could barely get a racquet on to go up 5-4, earning applause from the crowd.
The second set was the same story for Smith. She started shakily, earning two consecutive double faults on her first four serves, but managed to bounce back and take the first game. Norman then responded by grabbing the next three games, going up 3-1.
“It was a very up-and-down match,” said Smith. “It was the same thing in the second set, I started off good, but then let her go up. I had to pull myself together again and finish strong.”
And finish strong she did, with the hometown favorite making quick work of the next five to take the second set 6-3.
Seventh-seeded Smith will face a difficult test tomorrow when she takes on the first seed, Elysse Graci, tomorrow.
“Hopefully I can play well in my next match. It’s going to be a tough game tomorrow.
“This year is an especially important year because it’s the last year I get to play this tournament. And it’s at home, meaning my family and friends get to watch me play which they don’t get to do very often.”