Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Five US Juniors Still Alive in Singles at Roland Garros; ITA Men's Kickoff Draft Complete; Bollettieri Discovery Open Winners

Chalena Scholl reached the quarterfinals at the French Open Junior Championships today, after defeating Russian qualifier Olga Doroshina 6-1, 6-2. Scholl has spent just over three hours on court in her three wins this week, which is very efficient clay court tennis, and will have a day off tomorrow before facing No. 2 seed Annika Beck of Germany.

Top seed Taylor Townsend survived a tough test from Canadian Carol Zhao, getting an early break in the third set and holding on for a 6-7(1), 7-6(5), 6-4 victory in a second round match. Townsend will play unseeded Anna Schmiedlova of Slovakia in the third round Wednesday.

Noah Rubin advanced to the round of 16 with a 6-2, 6-3 win over No. 15 seed Stefan Napolitano of Italy and will play No. 3 seed Liam Broady of Great Britain in the third round on Wednesday.  Spencer Papa lost his third round match to No. 11 seed Adam Pavlasek of the Czech Republic 6-3, 6-4, and Jennifer Brady lost her second round match to No. 11 seed Montserrat Gonzalez of Paraguay 6-4, 6-2.

No. 8 seed Mitchell Krueger, who did not play singles today, will play French wild card Quentin Halys Wednesday, and Allie Kiick, the No. 16 seed, also off in singles today, will play Petra Uberlova of Slovakia  on Wednesday.  Kiick is the subject of this Junior Jamboree feature by Sandy Harwitt at Tennishorts.com, with the 16-year-old discussing her famous father, her love of red clay and why the USTA training trip to Spain last week wasn't able to help her prepare for Roland Garros.

Kiick is one of four US girls still alive in doubles, with she and Jennifer Brady winning their first round match today to set up a meeting with No. 4 seeds Sachia Vickery and Francoise Abanda of Canada. Taylor Townsend is also playing with a Canadian, Eugenie Bouchard, and the top seeds advanced to the second round with an easy win today.   The only US boy remaining in doubles is qualifier Thai Kwiatkowski, who is playing with Lucas Gomez of Mexico. They are into the quarterfinals after a win today.

Although the staggered scheduling makes the accounting difficult, I did some country tabulating today based on the round of 16. France has one boy and one girl remaining in the singles, both wild cards, which isn't surprising since 16 of their 18 entries were wild cards. Only one Russian made it to the round of 16, despite their nine entries in the girls draw, and with Scholl defeating her today, a Russian will not win the girls title. With all their professional success in the past decade, it's surprising to note there hasn't been a Russian French girls champion since Nadia Petrova in 1998.

The US had the most players in the round of 16, six, with Canada and Brazil each having three apiece, tied for second place. Canada's Filip Peliow and Eugenie Bouchard are the focus of the ITF junior website's recap of today's action.  There is also a photo gallery from the tournament on the ITF Junior facebook page.  For the junior draws, see the tournament website.

The Team Indoor Championships seem a long way away next February, but the draft for the men's Kickoff weekend was held today, with the women's draft tomorrow.

Unlike the women's Team Indoor, which will again not have Stanford or Florida participating in 2013, each of the men's Top 15 teams will be hosting three other teams in late January for a chance to compete at the University of Washington.  The highest ranked team not participating in the men's draw is No. 18 Baylor, with the only other Top 50 teams electing to skip the competition Alabama, Dartmouth and Brown. The last team in appears to have been East Tennessee State, ranked No. 72.

There's no question, based on current rankings, that the Illinois regional is the toughest, with No. 16 North Carolina, No. 17 Tulsa and No. 20 Tennessee electing to go to Champaign. I'm sure Illinois' popularity has something to do with the fact they are hosting the NCAAs next May, so getting a match on the indoor courts there a few months in advance may come in handy.

The complete draft can be found at the ITA website.

The Discovery Open, a new tournament for 11-, 13- and 15-year-olds held at the IMG Bollettieri Tennis Academy in Bradenton concluded yesterday with the following winners, who receive a free week of camp at the Academy:

Girls 15s: Jessica Ho of the U.S.
Boys 15s: Sahil Deshmukh of India
Girls 13s: Nicole Krykanov of the U.S.
Boys 13s: Gianni Ross of the U.S.
Girls 11s: Abigail Desiatnikov of the U.S.
Boys 11s: Axel Nefve of the U.S.

For more on the tournament, see this blog from the final day.


Russ said...

Regarding why so many high seeds chose Illinois, unless you were delivering some pointed snark, I don't think playing indoors in february will help any team prepare for playing outdoors in may. I think it might have something to do with Illinois losing their one and two and the suspected quality of their remaining players and recruits.

Colette Lewis said...

After spending many an hour indoors at the recently completed NCAAs in Athens and being a lifetime observer of Midwestern weather, I would be very surprised if there is no indoor play in Illinois next May. I hope I am wrong.

HesitantCardFan said...

Very disappointed to see Florida and Stanford not play the Indoors. After the rankings/seedings controversy all season I would think both teams would decide to play to get some out of conference matches (which Stanford desperately needs, more so than Florida who does a better job scheduling out of conference matches). I don't understand.

collegetennis said...

Stanford & Florida seem determined to render the Women's Indoor irrelevant. Thank goodness the top men's teams don't do this.