Stunning win for British teenager Sonay Kartal highlights the importance of UK Pro League

British teenager Sonay Kartal produced the best win of her career as she beat world No.215 Yurok Miyazaki to reach the semi-finals of the UK Pro League in Shrewsbury.

Brighton teenager Kartal, who is currently ranked at No.989 in the WTA rankings was in sparkling form as she saw off her Japanese opponent with a stunning display of power hitting in a win that will give her huge confidence heading into 2022.

“I think Lily is one of those players that you can’t get in a rhythm against,” said Kartal after the match.

“She’s very calm down the other end of the net. I had my chances (in the second set), you don’t have time to reflect on what happened.”

Kartal sat down with Tennis365 for an exclusive chat earlier this week, after she shot to prominence on video clips of her matches with Emma Raducanu in her youth.

She told us that the UK Pro League was a crucial step in her progress towards what she hopes will be a big year on the WTA Tour for her career.

Sonay Kartal (Ian Hall)
Sonay Kartal (photo Ian Hall)

“Getting the match practice is so important and that’s why the Pro League has been massive for the British players,” she told us.

“The format of the Pro League is fantastic as it means we are all guaranteed matches in the round-robin format. If you go to a regular tournament and lose in the first round, that is the end of it, but there is another match to play here. The prize money is incredible and it allows us to fund future trips to rankings events.

I had injury problem as my body just wasn’t standing up to the demands of playing regular matches week after week, but it feels like I’m getting there now. This Pro League has been fantastic for me and my aim is to stay fit and try and kick on next year.”