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Saturday, September 19, 2009

Klahn Reaches Claremont Final; Surprise Winners in Kentucky ITF; Big Things Expected of Cunha at Duke

Stanford sophomore Bradley Klahn has reached the finals of the $10,000 Pro Circuit event in Claremont, California after defeating No. 4 seed Daniel Danilovic of Montenegro in today's semifinal 7-6(6), 6-3. The 19-year-old from the San Diego area defeated top seed Yong-Kyu Lim of Korea (who lost in the second round at the U.S. Open Junior championships last week) 6-3, 6-2 on Friday. Klahn, who is 15th in the ITA preason rankings, played three Futures this summer as a member of the USTA Summer Circuit team, going 4-3 in main draw matches, so this is easily his best showing. Two former college players--Ashwin Kumar of Harvard and Brett Joelson of Texas A & M--were awarded the doubles titles when one of their opponents was unable to return in time from a qualifying match in Costa Mesa, the site of the next Futures event.

For more on the Claremont Futures, see this release, courtesy of Steve Pratt.

In the Tulsa Challenger, Wayne Odesnik will face Taylor Dent in the final. Tulsa's team of Phillip Stevens and Ashley Watling reached the doubles final before falling to top seeds David Martin and Rajeev Ram.

For complete draws, see usta.com's Pro Circuit results page.

At the ITF Grade 1 in Lexington Kentucky, No. 4 seed Duilio Beretta of Peru defeated No. 6 seed Nikala Scholtz of South Africa 6-4, 3-6, 6-4 to take the boys title, while the girls championship was won by No. 4 seed 14-year-old Irinia Khromacheva of Russia, who beat No. 7 seed Sai-Sai Zheng of China 6-3, 6-4. Interesting that all four finalists lost in the first round of the U.S. Open juniors: Beretta to Julien Obry of France; Scholtz to Arthur De Greef of Belgium; Khromacheva to Lauren Davis and Zheng to Julia Boserup of the U.S. Nick Chappell of the U.S., who won the Kalamazoo 16 doubles last month with Marcos Giron, reached the semifinals as a qualifier. Dennis Novikov and Shane Vinsant reached the quarterfinals. Americans Sachia Vickery and Monica Turewicz reached the girls singles quarterfinals, while Turewicz and Ellen Tsay reached the doubles semifinals. Brooke Bolender, playing with Croatian Ajla Tomljanovic, reached the doubles final. Shaun Bernstein and Campbell Johnson advanced to the boys doubles final. For complete results, see the ITF Junior website.

The Southern Intercollegiate Championships in Athens, Ga. are being delayed by rain, with all top flight singles postponed until Sunday according to georgiadogs.com. JP Smith and Nate Schnugg are the top seeds, with several high profile freshman also entered. Ryan Lipman of Vanderbilt and Rhyne Williams of Tennessee both won their opening matches. Henrique Cunha of Brazil, a former ITF Top 10 junior, has begun his career at Duke, and he plays Smith next, which will be a good gauge of his level. This story, from the Duke Chronicle, suggests he may supplant Reid Carleton at the top of the Blue Devils' lineup. It also explains the role assistant coach Josh Goffi and teammate Alain Michel played in recruiting Cunha.

Two more, unrelated items, an interesting story on the failure of the United Arab Emirates to provide infrastructure for its juniors, driving them to the U.S. and a great slide show from the U.S. Open (not juniors) from Rustam Tahir at Westminster Road.