On the women's side, we have rising PSA star Haley Mendez taking on 16-year-old phenom Marina Stefanoni. Haley is PSA #46 and Marina is #71, but Marina is coming off her amazing British Junior Open title and she almost took down PSA #28 Zeina Mickaway in the ToC qualifiers last month, losing 12-14 in the 4th.
For the men, Nathan Lake (PSA #50) is taking on Vikram Malhotra (PSA #59), who has just relocated to NYC and so is the newest member of the NY Pro League. Vikram went on a tear in the fall of 2018, winning PSA titles in September, October, and November.
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At age 16, Marina won the US Junior Open Girls U19 in December, and is the youngest player to have won the U19 US National Title when she first captured it at age 13, winning it again at 14, and again last year at age 15. In January in the ToC she played head to head with PSA #28 Zeina Mickaway taking a game 11-3 and losing 10-12 and 12-14. She’s just coming off a successful defense of her GU19 US Junior Open title, and last month became the first US junior to win at the British Junior Open in 12 years, taking the GU17 title. Currently Marina is ranked as PSA world #71.
Playing for Heights Casino, Haley Mendez has had a storied career. She grew up playing here in NYC at the Casino. As a junior, she was the #1 U19, and as a college player, she led Harvard to three national championships, and earned three individual All-America honors. This season in the PSA she reached the quarters at the Nash Cup and semifinals at the CAC Open. Currently Haley is ranked at PSA world #46.
Malhotra is a five-time Junior National Champion in India and Asia's former No. 1-ranked junior player. A four-time All-American for the Trinity Bantams, his Trinity teams won four consecutive CSA National Championship titles. In the fall of 2018 Vikram went on an absolute tear of PSA titles, winning the Aspen Kemp in September, the Texas Open in October, and the APM Kelowna Open in November. Currently Vikram is ranked PSA #59.
Playing for Heights Casino, Nate is the former European Junior Champion. He has two PSA titles under his belt, and reached the quarters of the Kolkata International in November. In December, he won the UK Men's Boston Open, and last month he gave a very tough match to Cameron Pilley at the ToC on the glass court and Grand Central. Currently Nate is ranked PSA world #50.