Ram Wins Newport Title; Isner Beats Devvarman at Kennedy Funding; Strode Falls in Pittsburgh Final; Mamalat Takes ITA Summer Circuit Event
Although the U.S. Davis Cup team took a disappointing loss to Croatia this weekend, there was one big American winner from it. Former Illinois player Rajeev Ram, a lucky loser who got into the Campbell's Hall of Fame Championships in Newport, Rhode Island when Mardy Fish withdrew to fill in for Andy Roddick in Croatia, won his first ATP singles title with a 6-7(3), 7-5, 6-3 victory over No. 3 seed Sam Querrey. Ram, who won the Kalamazoo 16s singles and doubles titles in 2000 and Kalamazoo 18s doubles titles the next two years (all with Jonathan Stokke), has been posting excellent doubles results in the past couple of years, but few expected a ATP Tour title from him, given his singles ranking of 181.
Both Querrey and Ram were Bill Talbert Junior Sportsmanship winners, and yesterday Jeremy Efferding, Ryan Lipman, Ryan Thacher and Gary Wang were honored as the 2008 recipients. The USTA Florida section had this story about Efferding on their website.
At the Kennedy Funding Invitational, a non-ATP fund-raising event that has become popular with many former collegiate players, John Isner avenged his 2007 NCAA finals loss to Somdev Devvarman, defeating the defending champion 3-6, 6-4, 6-2. The Lower Hudson Journal News had this story on the men's final, and on the women's semifinals. Melanie Oudin won the women's event easily today, losing only one game in her match with Lauren Cash.
Devvarman, who is only 2-8 on the challenger circuit this year and hasn't posted any notable results outside of Davis Cup since reaching the final of the Chennai Open in January, was interviewed recently about his slump. Click here for the story from the Hindu. Devvarman is scheduled to compete in the Aptos challenger next week.
In the Pittsburgh Futures final today, Dennis Zivkovic won both the singles and doubles titles, beating lucky loser Blake Strode in two tiebreaks, then teaming with Haydn Lewis to defeat Austin Krajicek and Rhyne Williams 6-3, 3-6, 10-3. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reveals Zivkovic's local ties in this story, and speaks with Anna Mamalat, the 15-year-old who won the ITA Summer Circuit Women's event at the same venue. For complete draws, see the TennisLink site.
For complete Pro Circuit results, see usta.com.