Jorge, Rocha Crowned Portugal’s National Tennis Champions

Henrique Rocha and Francisca Jorge(photo: Sara Falcão/Federação Portuguesa de Ténis)

OEIRAS, November 12, 2023

Francisca Jorge made history by winning the Portuguese National Championship/Taça Guilherme Pinto Basto for the seventh consecutive time, while Henrique Rocha lifted the trophy for the first time. The tournament, organized by the Portuguese Tennis Federation, took place from November 4 to 11 at the Jamor Tennis Complex in Oeiras, celebrating its 99th edition with a record prize money of €25,000.

In the seventh final of her career, Francisca faced her younger sister, Matilde Jorge, for the fourth time, creating the most even match yet. However, the recent shift in their head-to-head battles did not alter the outcome, with Francisca securing victory once again, this time with scores of 7-5 and 6-0.

Motivated by two international victories in the past 12 months, Matilde entered the final determined to claim the trophy that had eluded her in three previous occasions. Although she threatened to break in the opening game, it was Francisca who secured the first service break in the following game.

With aggressive tennis from both players, Matilde’s variability countered Francisca’s consistency, allowing her to quickly recover the break and engage in a tight battle for the first six games. However, serving to stay in the set and force a tie-break, Matilde felt the pressure and suffered a decisive service break, determining the outcome of the set and the final.

The victory in a closely contested first set, lasting over an hour, propelled Francisca Jorge to an authoritative second set. The 23-year-old capitalized on errors and the emotional setback of her sister to comfortably secure her 27th consecutive win in the tournament and the historic seventh title.

“It is very good to continue making history in women’s tennis in Portugal, and I am undoubtedly very happy,” said Francisca, becoming the fifth Portuguese woman to win at least seven titles and the third to do so consecutively.

Rocha celebrates first triumph

The 19-year-old Porto-born Henrique Rocha had never won a singles match in the tournament before this edition. Still, he entered as the undisputed favorite due to his explosive season on the international circuit (rising over 500 places in the ATP rankings and winning five ITF World Tennis Tour M25 titles), and he stopped only with the trophy in hand.

In a final between the top two seeds, World No. 281 Rocha defeated his training partner, doubles partner, and best friend Jaime Faria 6-4, 6-4.

“It is a tremendous pride to be able to say that I am the national champion. I had won national championships in the youth categories, but being the national champion at senior’s level is a source of pride, and I am very happy,” said Rocha.