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Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Men's Qualifying Underway at Australian Open; Tomljanovic, Solovieva and Capra Qualify at Plantation Pro Circuit; Copper Bowl 16s & 18s Review

The U.S. has an even dozen men battling for spots in the main draw of the Australian Open, with the qualifying tournament underway this evening. Alex Kuznetsov, Lester Cook, Kevin Kim, Todd Widom, Michael Yani, Jesse Witten, Donald Young, Brendan Evans, Alex Bogomolov, Ryler DeHeart, Ryan Sweeting and Robert Kendrick are all playing their first round qualifying matches tonight (it's Wednesday in Melbourne now).

A few other notes about some of those in qualifying;

Two-time NCAA champion Somdev Devvarman did not receive the Asian main draw wild card. Although I have not seen an official announcement, it appears to have gone to Andrey Golubev of Kazakhstan.

There are 14 Australians in the qualifying, eight of them wild cards, and one of the qualifying wild cards has gone to Sean Berman. Berman, who is still listed as playing for the USA on the ITF sites, won the Australian Under 16 title last month, defeating Luke Saville, who also received a qualifying wild card. There are two other Australian juniors in the qualifying draw--James Duckworth and Ben Mitchell.

India's Yuki Bhambri, who may have requested a qualifying wild card as the 2009 Australian Open boys champion, ended up not needing one. He got in on his own ranking, which is 330.

For the complete men's qualifying draw, see the Australian Open website. The women's qualifying draw should be out by Wednesday morning.

The qualifying is complete at the Plantation Pro Circuit events, and three junior girls made the main draw of the $25,000 tournament. Alja Tomljanovic, seeded No. 2, beat Kaitlyn Christian 7-6(3), 6-1, Beatrice Capra defeated Allie Will 6-1, 2-6, 6-2 (both were unseeded) and unseeded Valeria Solovieva beat No. 8 seed Lena Litvak 6-1, 6-2. In a main draw first round match between wild cards, Ahsha Rolle defeated Ester Goldfeld 7-6(1), 1-6, 6-4.

In the men's $10,000 Futures, Alex Domijan and Alexander Ward were the only two teenagers to advance out of the qualifying. In a main draw first round match, Arkansas's Blake Strode defeated No. 7 seed Matej Bocko of Slovakia 6-4, 6-4.

On Wednesday we are flying to Florida for the USTA Tennis Plaza Cup, which begins Saturday, and are hoping to check in on the Plantation events Thursday.

For complete results, see the Pro Circuit page at usta.com.

If you are interested in the 16s and 18s finals at the Copper Bowl, Gregg Jones has all the particulars at the Tennis Recruiting Network.


curiousgeorge said...

Off topic ,

Anyone know the latest on Sam Querrey?

tennisforlife said...

Berman is listed as Australian on the draw - He has been listed as from South Africa, New Zealand, USA and Australia at various times. Seems to be shopping for the best deal in terms of nationality. The USTA has inexplicitly given him numerous wildcards including Kalamzaoo last year. Pretty impressive for a kid whose last big win was in the Little Mo boys 10's.

Austin said...

IM BACK! My favorite time of year is upon us, beginning of both pro and college seasons.

@Curiousgeorge, what do you mean latest on Querrey? If you're asking if he is still recovering from his injury, then no, he played this week, losing first round. He's good to go next week down under. Hopefully he can shake off some rust and get it going.

Sean Berman, dont know him but good riddence. People who follow this site regularly know how much I detest players who switch nationalities after feeding from the teet of one country. It has nothing to do with them as a person. If Taylor Dent ever switched to Australia I would react the same way. However, Taylor has repeatedly said he would NEVER do that because it just isnt right. If only everyone felt that way.

Aussie Qualifying:

Kuznetsov had a tough task yesterday, credit to him for giving the X-Man a run for his money in the second set.

Lester Cook, valiant effort.

Kevin Kim took out former Tennessee Vol Kaden Hensel 4&4.

Todd Widom, dissapointing loss. He should have been the next Michael Russell, unfortuantely it just hasnt worked out for him.

Michael Yani forced me to stay up late, but it was worth it. Great poise in winning 13-11 in the third.

Alex Bogomolov, Jesse Witten and Donald Young all rolled.

Ryler DeHeart played well, but Koubek is so tough.

Ryan Sweeting and Robert Kendrick both had really good three set wins.

Tough, though loss for Brendan Evans. This is his year to break through into the Top100, at least for a minute. I think he is a younger Robert Kendrick.

7-5 for the boys isnt too bad.

Other former college players:

James Lemke(Pepperdine) got rolled.

Izak Van Der Merwe(Old Dominion) had a good three set win.

Lars Poerschke(Baylor) great win 8-6 in the third. Surprised to even see him in the draw.

Connor Niland(California), Kevin Anderson(Illinois) and Somdev Devvarman(Virginia) all had nice wins.

Prakash Amritraj(USC) and Andre Begemann(Pepperdine) had a nice battle with Amritraj coming out on top in three sets. Was also surprised to see Begemann in the draw.

curiousgeorge said...


Where have you been ? This blog misses you . Thanks for the info! Keep it going ...