Unlike most $25,000 Pro Circuit tournaments, which feature eight, there are only four qualifying places available for the $100,000 Dow Corning Tennis Classic. Seventeen-year-old Beatrice Capra earned one of them today, by defeating 18-year-old Chieh-Yu (Connie) Hsu, also of the United States, 6-4, 6-4. Capra's opponent in Wednesday's first round is wild card Heather Watson, also 17. Capra and Watson have played once, in the semifinals of the 2008 ITF US Junior International Hard Courts in New Jersey, and Watson won what looks to have been a fantastic match, 6-7(2), 7-6(5), 7-5.
In this feature about Watson in the Midland Daily News, she and her mother Michelle reflect on the tour travel, the US Open junior championships and the Michigan snow (we've gotten a fresh six inches today). Mike Woody, the Executive Director of the tournament, also explains the process of selecting wild cards, and points out some of the very impressive past recipients.
For the results from the Pro Circuit, see usta.com.
Pete Sampras played Spain's Fernando Verdasco in an exhibition last night at the ATP SAP Open, and Matt Cronin of Tennisreporters.net relayed some intriguing comments from the 14-time grand slam champion on his twitter feed.
Sampras: 'These young guys are still green & I see so many things in their attitudes and games that need changing. I'm available 4 services'
Pete Sampras says he still available to coach in LA: 'I have time on my hands. If USTA wants to step up I'll make a champion.'
Cronin goes on to comment when asked by Tennis Channel's James LaRosa for reasons why it hasn't yet happened: "...both Pete and Martina(Navratilova) are very pricey and very specific under what conditions they would work."
Can Sampras "make a champion?" Mark me as skeptical, but I'm more than willing to see him try, if the USTA can make it happen.
Just a quick note on a couple of new tennis sites I've been made aware of recently. The Tennis Mom is a new site, run by Nicole, who is, you guessed it, a tennis mom. She had some very nice things to say about zootennis in her most recent post entitled, Great Tennis Site for Tennis Parents. I appreciate that, and hope she continues to build her site. Junior tennis needs all the resources it can muster.
And in that vein, there is another site, ustennistalk, that is developing a peer-to-peer network. I'm told the idea is "to build an interconnection and shared knowledge repository between all of the top people in tennis."
Tuesday, February 9, 2010