Williams Upsets Reynolds in USTA's Australian Open WC Tournament; Eddie Herr G14s Final Rematch Possible in Second Round at Junior Orange Bowl
The USTA Australian Open Wild Card tournament began today with No. 6 seed Madison Keys' upset of No. 3 seed Jamie Hampton by a 3-6, 6-4, 9-7 score later overshadowed by No. 8 seed Rhyne Williams' 4-6, 6-4, 10-8 win over top seed Bobby Reynolds. The former Tennessee Volunteer, a finalist at the 2011 NCAAs, was down a set and a break before rallying to take the three-hour-plus contest. Last year Williams lost to eventual champion Ryan Harrison in the semfinals 4-6, 6-2, 9-7. For more on the Williams win, see Amanda Pruitt's article at utsports.com. Williams will play Robby Ginepri in Saturday's semifinal, after Ginepri downed Steve Johnson 7-6(4), 6-0. Denis Kudla advanced with a win 3-6, 7-6(4), 5-4 ret. win over Jack Sock and will take on Jesse Levine in the semifinals. Levine defeated Dan Kosakowski 6-2, 6-4.
Keys, who saved a match point in her win over Hampton, will play No. 2 seed Alison Riske, who beat Grace Min 6-0, 6-0. No. 5 seed Gail Brodsky downed No. 4 seed Melanie Oudin, playing at her home club, 4-6, 6-4, 6-4. Brodsky will meet top seed CoCo Vandeweghe, who beat Taylor Townsend 6-4, 6-4.
For Steve Pratt's extensive recap of the day's action for the USTA, click here.
The Junior Orange Bowl main draw begins Saturday morning, with the final two rounds of qualifying completed today. The draws are posted, although without the qualifiers placed, and the best two first round match that I noticed were both in the girls 14s, with unseeded Marie Smith of the US playing No. 5 seed Iryna Shymanvich of Belarus, and unseeded Kenadi Hance of the US taking on No. 7 seed Ivana Jorovic of Serbia.
There are a couple of second rounders that I am already anticipating in the girls 14s, with No. 2 seed Maria Shishkina of the US and Anhelina Kalinina of Ukraine likely to reprise their exciting Eddie Herr final, in which Shishkina saved six match points. I could have sworn Kalinina was seeded initially, but she is not seeded now and that rematch would probably worth the drive out to Key Biscayne to see. Another dynamite second rounder would put Orange Bowl 16s quarterfinalist Jessica Ho of the US against No. 4 seed Naiktha Bains of Australia.
I will probably stay in Coral Gables on Saturday, where I hope to see a few players I have heard about, but not yet seen play, including Ryan Peus, Michaela Gordon and Catherine Bellis in the girls 12s, and Cameron Klinger and Nathan Ponwith in the boys 14s. Ponwith plays Sumit Nagal of India, which is surely one of the best matches between two unseeded players on the schedule Saturday.
Michelle Kaufman of the Miami Herald provided this preview of the Junior Orange Bowl today.
For the draws, see the TennisLink site.