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Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Casablanca Cup Underway in Mexico; DiGiulio and Lederman Named to European Winter Travel Team

The first ITF Grade A tournament of 2009, the Casablanca Cup, is underway outside Mexico City. Given the time of year, the field is always among the weakest of the Grade A's and this year is no exception, with no boys in the Top 50 competing. There are six Top 50 girls playing, including No. 6 Ana Bogdan of Romania. Bogdan, 16, is no doubt hoping to get off to a good start in her quest for the No. 1 spot in 2009, which was rudely ended this year by Sloane Stephens, who didn't lose a game to the top seed in the quarterfinals at the Dunlop Orange Bowl.

Denis Kudla (ranked 56th) and Harry Fowler (67) are the top two boys seeds. Kudla had no points to defend, losing in the first round last year, but Fowler reached the quarterfinals. Junior Ore (184) is also seeded. All three won their first round matches but Denis Lin, the 13th seed, lost to a Mexican wild card.

The U.S. seeded girls include No. 14 Nicole Gibbs, No. 15 Alexandra Cercone, and No. 16 Noel Scott, and all won their first round matches Monday, as did unseeded Americans Kelsey Sundaram, Madison Keys, Monica Yajima, Nikita Meka and Jessica Pegula. On Wednesday, Keys, the 2007 Junior Orange Bowl 12s champion, will meet Iveta Dapkute of Lithuania, the 2007 Junior Orange Bowl 14s champion.

For complete results, visit copacasablanca.com.mx, the tournament's excellent website. (Spanish preferred, but not necessary).

The four U.S. boys that will travel to England's Teen Tennis tournament and Les Petits As in France late next month have been named. In addition to Luca Corinteli and Nikko Madregallejo, who won the round robin tournament, Joseph DiGiulio and Roy Lederman will also make the trip.

The girls team is likely to include Sachia Vickery, Victoria Duval and Brooke Austin, with Madison Keys competing at Les Petits As only, and therefore not traveling as part of the U.S. team. I will try to get the name of the fourth member of the team next week.


itffacts said...

FYI... with casablanca the top 9 seeds in the boys draw are indeed in the top 50 for 2009. You used the 2008 ITF rankings which include the 1990 birthdays. Kudla for Jan 1 is #28, Fowler #32, Uriguen #33 ect. Also, noticed 10 US boys were in the main draw (including Orange Bowl finalist Mitchell Frank) and as you noted only 3 - kudla, Ore and Fowler won thier first rd matches. Great turn out, not so great results.