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Saturday, June 25, 2011

Top Seed Gavrilova Out, Five American Juniors Advance at Wimbledon; Tomic Beats Soderling

US Open girls champion Daria Gavrilova went out in the first round at the Grade 1 in Roehampton last week and her grass court season didn't get any better today, as the top-seeded Russian lost in the Wimbledon juniors opening round to Kateryna Kozlova of Ukraine 7-6(2), 6-3. Kozlova was playing in only her second junior slam--she lost in the first round at the recent French Open juniors--but it should be noted that her success on the professional circuit is what gained her entry into the French and Wimbledon. The 17-year-old had a WTA ranking of 309 at the time of acceptance, and although it has fallen to 354 now, just outside of the number that would have gotten her seeded, she obviously was a very dangerous first round opponent, not unlike Gavrilova's first round opponent at Roehampton, Krista Hardebeck.

Hardebeck was one of the three US girls to advance to the second round today. She defeated Demi Schuurs of the Netherlands 6-2, 6-4, and Madison Keys, apparently recovered from the groin strain that kept her from finishing the tournament at Roehampton last week, also had a straight-set win, beating No. 8 seed Victoria Bosio of Argentina 6-4, 6-0. Stephanie Nauta also advanced with a tight 7-6(3), 7-6(6) win over British wild card Pippa Horn. Grace Min was the only US girl to fall in today's action; she lost to Sofiya Kovalets of Ukraine 7-5, 6-4.

Two of the four US boys in action today advanced, with Marcos Giron and Alexios Halebian moving into the second round. Giron beat No. 14 seed Andre Artunedo Martinavarr of Spain 6-2, 7-5 and Halebian avenged his loss at Roehampton by defeating Bruno Sant'anna of Brazil 6-4, 6-4. Mac Styslinger lost to Belgian Julien Cagnina 7-6(4), 6-3 and Mitchell Krueger dropped a tough one to No. 8 seed Mate Pavic of Croatia 3-6, 7-6(5), 8-6.

The most notable upset on the boys side today was the loss of No. 3 seed Hugo Dellien of Bolivia, who was beaten by Kaichi Uchida of Japan 7-6(4), 6-1.

For today's results, as well as the singles and just-released doubles draws, see wimbledon.com.

Eighteen-year-old qualifier Bernard Tomic of Australia continued his run in the men's draw, beating No. 5 seed Robin Soderling of Sweden 6-1, 6-4, 7-5 to advance to the fourth round. This article from Australia's Herald Sun drops some pretty big names in putting Tomic's accomplishment into perspective.

I seem to recall John Newcombe doubting Tomic's prospects for the Top 50 not too long ago, but he has re-thought those comments in this article from the Sydney Morning Herald which was written prior to today's win. Pat Rafter's association with Tomic and his father John seems to be among the reasons for Tomic's recent surge. After today's win, he is projected to reach the Top 100 for the first time when the post-Wimbledon rankings are released.


Tennis is The Game said...

Hi Collete, what are your predictions on Novikov Vs Karlovskiy?

Austin said...

Harrison is getting closer and closer though. I cant tell if he is more Andy Roddick or Sam Querrey yet, but I think he will start having some impressive results this fall and then make a big move into the Top30-50 next year.

Colette Lewis said...

@Tennis is The Game
No predictions from me, especially when I've never seen Karlovskiy play.

TheDude said...

Austin, I think Harrison has a better developed all court game than those two. He comes in more and is a better volleyer and he throws in a S&V as a surprise tactic every once in awhile. His forehand has much improved over the last 2 years. His backhand is much better than Querrey's and Roddick's. He just needs more experience and match play.

5.0 Player said...

TheDude-I agree with your general characterization of Harrison's game vs. Roddick's and Query's but let's not discount the value of Roddick's 155 MPH serve and Querrey's 145 MPH serve which enabled Querrey to break the record and serve 10 consecutive aces in that match against Blake. Moreover, Querrey's rocket forehand is by far superior to Harrison's and, while Roddick's forehand largely sucks today, it was a much bigger weapon than Harrison's when he first became pro and was Harrison's age. Without a weapon akin to Roddick's and Querrey's, Harrison will not, and has not, rocketed up the rankings into the top 50 as fast as either Querrey or Roddick did. I'm afraid we're going to see 3+ more years of Harrison winning and losing 7-6 or 7-5 in the final set all the time. He is continuing to have trouble knocking-off other good players in succession without having to fight through marathon squeakers and so it has been and will continue to be much harder for him to move deep through draws to move up the rankings quickly. Being a well rounded, all court player, holds some value but having big and reproduceable weapons is much more valuable in the modern game.

5.0 Player said...

My prediction is that Tomic will always do far better at Wimbledon than he will do at any other Grand Slam throughout his career. Conversely, the French will always be his worst Grand Slam. This kid has always had a very strange game with incredible hands hitting mostly flat balls and slices. It was even noticeable when I first saw him play at the Orange Bowl when he was eleven years old. This game was always tailor-made for the grass. He will do o.k. on hard courts also but he was born to play on grass.