US Boys 18s champion Austin Krajicek, who finally takes the court for his first round men's main draw match against Argentina's Agustin Calleri Wednesday morning, has been selected as a Davis Cup hitting partner by U.S. captain Patrick McEnroe. The defending champions have a tough test in next month's semifinal tie in Spain, and world No. 1 Rafael Nadal is expected to anchor the team, although the players competing for both countries have yet to be officially announced. Krajicek decided against competing in the U.S. Open Junior championships once he received McEnroe's invitation, as the time commitment for the three tournaments (main draw, juniors and Davis Cup) would have proved too difficult to juggle with his classes at Texas A & M, which started this week.
Although four of the men's wild cards do not play until Wednesday, the last of the U.S. women's wild cards exited on Tuesday when Gail Brodsky, Melanie Oudin and Jamea Jackson lost. Brodsky held a set point against No. 13 seed Agnes Szavay in the opening set, but was defeated by the Hungarian 7-5, 6-3. The New York Daily News filed this story on Brodsky's loss.
Qualifier Kristie Ahn got some television coverage on USA Network early this afternoon when she took on No. 6 seed and Olympic silver medalist Dinara Safina in Armstrong Stadium. Safina looked less than her best, but Ahn, the tournament's youngest player, impressed commentator Tracy Austin with her shot selection and fighting spirit in the 6-3, 6-4 loss. Usopen.org provided this coverage of the Ahn - Safina match.
Melanie Oudin had the least daunting opponent of the three teens in fellow wild card Jessica Moore of Australia, but Moore, 18, took a 7-6(5), 7-6(5) decision. Jamea Jackson also lost, in three sets, to No. 27 seed Alona Bondarenko of Ukraine.
The women's and mixed doubles draws are posted. See usopen.org for all draws, and check collegeandjuniortennis.com for Marcia Frost's coverage of the Open.
Tuesday, August 26, 2008