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Friday, February 11, 2011

Guichard Hired as USTA National Coach; Falconi Reaches Singles and Doubles Semifinals in Midland; Memphis Draws Released, Price Falls in Qualifying

The USTA announced today that former Mississippi State men's head coach Sylvain Guichard will join the Player Development staff as a National Coach for Women's Tennis. Guichard, who has been working at an Illinois club the past three years, will be based in Boca Raton. Michael Redlicki, who won the 16s title in Kalamazoo in 2010, frequently mentioned his relationship with Guichard as a key to his outstanding results last summer. For the complete release, see usta.com.

Today in Midland, Irina Falconi recorded victories in both singles and doubles to reach the semifinals in both draws at the Dow Corning Tennis Classic. Falconi beat unseeded Madison Brengle 6-2, 6-3 in singles this afternoon, and with Alison Riske, defeated the No. 4 seeded doubles team of Sorana Cirstea and Anastasia Pivovarova 6-3, 6-4. Falconi will play No. 2 seed Rebecca Marino of Canada in tomorrow's semifinal. The two 20-year-olds could have been teammates at Georgia Tech, as Marino committed to the Atlanta school where Falconi spent two years, but the Canadian ended up passing on college as her ranking improved. Falconi and Riske play the unseeded team of Gabriela Dabrowski and Whitney Jones in one doubles semifinal.

Complete singles results from Friday:
Lucie Hradecka (Czech Republic) def. Sabine Lisicki (Germany) 6-1, 2-6, 7-6(3)
[7] Ksenia Pervak (Russia) def. [Q] Ahsha Rolle (United States) 7-6(4), 6-4
Irina Falconi (United States) def. Madison Brengle (United States) 6-2, 6-3
[2] Rebecca Marino (Canada) def. [Q] Alexandra Stevenson (United States) 2-6, 6-3, 6-3

If there is a jinx associated with blogging for usta.com, Falconi is proving it is nothing more than a coincidence with her success this week. You may send her a question at player@usta.com. Her current entry can be found here.

The qualifying has started for the WTA Cellular South Cup in Memphis, which presented a problem for two of the Midland quarterfinalists, Brengle and Alexandra Stevenson. Neither was able to make their first round qualifying matches today at the Racquet Club of Memphis, so they have been postponed until Saturday. In the six matches that did take place, Heather Watson, Michelle Larcher de Brito, Alexa Glatch, Katie O'Brien, Stephanie Foretz Gacon and Anna-Lena Groenefeld advanced to the final round. 2010 USTA Girls 18s Clay Court champion Caroline Price made use of the qualifying wild card she received for that title, and got off to a great start against O'Brien, but lost the final eight games of the match, losing 1-6, 6-2, 6-0. Complete results from today are available here.

The women's main draw includes one wild card previously announced, Catherine Harrison, and two others, Beatrice Capra and Ajla Tomljanovic. Harrison plays Sorana Cirstea of Romania, Capra will face a qualifier, and Tomljanovic will meet Evgeniya Rodina of Russia. The complete draw can be found at the tournament website.

The men's qualifying draw will come out later tonight, but one of the wild cards has been announced, with University of Memphis player Joe Salisbury the recipient.

At the $25,000 women's Pro Circuit event in Rancho Mirage, Ashley Weinhold and Lauren Albanese have reached the semifinals, where they'll each face a Pliskova twin. Ellen Tsay and Nicole Melichar reached the doubles semifinals, but were beaten today by the Pliskovas. For a complete review of the day's results, see this report from the USTA Pro Circuit.

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