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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Australian Open Junior Acceptances; USTA's Junior, College Year in Review; Deadline for USTA January Regionals is Thursday

The acceptance lists for the 2011 Australian Open Junior Championships have been published, and as has been the case for many years, there are few American juniors planning to make the trip Down Under. Sean Berman, who won the Australian boys 18s title earlier this month is again listed as USA, so it appears we'll have a simmilar scenario to the one we had last year, where the 2009 Australian Open boys finalist will be considered Australian by the host country and American by the ITF.

Aside from Berman, Dennis Novikov and Mitchell Krueger are the only two American boys listed in the main draw. Alex Petrone, Mac Styslinger, Emmett Egger, Daniel McCall, Trey Strobel, Robert Livi, Morgan Mays, Anthony Delcore and Roberto Cid are in qualifying, although in past years, few players have made the trip if they are not in main draw. Again this year there is a new qualifying site.

The U.S. girls that have received main draw acceptance are Krista Hardebeck, Lauren Herring, Monica Turewicz and Christina Makarova. Monica Puig of Puerto Rico is also in the main draw. Ashley Dai, Gabrielle DeSimone, Stephanie Nauta, Julia Elbaba, Elizaveta Nemchinov, Caroline Price, Denise Starr and Catherine Harrison are U.S. girls accepted into the qualifying. I have heard that Lauren Davis, who did not initially enter, would like get a wild card into the junior tournament, because she is now going to be in Australia for the women's main draw, having won the USTA's wild card tournament. If Davis is granted a wild card, she would be the favorite, as in the past two months, she has beaten nearly all of the other top junior girls entered.

U.S. Open champion Daria Gavrilova of Russia is entered, as are two other highly ranked Russians: Irina Khromacheva and Yulia Putintseva. On the boys side, Eddie Herr champion Dominic Thiem of Austria is entered, as is Orange Bowl champion George Morgan. Somewhat surprisingly, Oliver Golding of Great Britain, who is the top seed at the Casablanca Cup this week, is not.

For the complete list of acceptances, see the ITF junior website.

The Year in Review articles from the USTA have been posted for both the juniors and the collegians. Although the junior piece was completed prior to the Junior Orange Bowl, meaning that Michael Mmoh, Nicole Frenkel and Brooke Austin's championships aren't mentioned, there is a slide show with informative captions about many of the USTA champions of 2010. The college year in review also features a slideshow that includes the major championsship winners from 2010.

Beginning next month, the changes in the USTA's national junior competitions take effect, and one of the biggest moves has seen the regional tournaments shift to four mandated weekend dates. The January 22-24 weekend will see tournaments at 17 different sites around the country, with the deadline for entry Thursday, December 30th at 11:59 a.m. Because this is a new process, there are special instructions for entering more than one tournament. See the USTA junior competition page for more details.