Donaldson Tapped for Training with Federer; Teens Rubin and Rublev Meet in Futures Semifinal; Michigan, Georgia Announce Commitments From Former ITF Top 10 Players
Seventeen-year-old Jared Donaldson has been invited to train with Roger Federer in Dubai for three weeks next month. Federer is known for asking junior players to serve as hitting partners while he competes in tournaments and also during his off-season workouts in Dubai, where he trains to prepare himself for the heat of Australia in January.
Donaldson, this year's Kalamazoo 18s finalist, is now working with Taylor Dent and his father Phil at their academy in Fountain Valley, California. Taylor will be accompanying Donaldson on the trip to Dubai.
At the $10,000 Futures in Bradenton, 17-year-old Noah Rubin will face 16-year-old Andrey Rublev of Russia in Saturday's semifinal. Rubin posted a 3-6, 6-4, 6-3 win over 16-year-old Naoki Nakagawa of Japan today, while Rublev, the 2012 Orange Bowl 16s champion, defeated 21-year-old Romain Arneodo of Monaco 7-6(4), 7-6(2). Rublev, the No. 8 seed this week, and Rubin, seeded seventh, have both already reached Futures finals--Rubin in the $10,000 Godfrey, Illinois Futures in July, Rublev in the $15,000 Belarus Futures in August. Rublev defeated Rubin in the first round of the ITF Grade A Italian Open this year, on red clay, not the green clay they compete on in Bradenton.
Former Florida Gator Greg Ouellette will play Martins Podzus of Latvia in the other semifinal. No. 4 seed Ouellette defeated Stefan Kozlov 6-4, 7-6(5), while No. 6 seed Podzus, who is 19, beat recent Ohio State graduate Devin McCarthy 1-6, 7-6(3), 6-1.
The doubles final was played today, with Kozlov and Sekou Bangoura Jr. taking the championship with a 6-2, 6-4 win over McCarthy and Tommy Mylnikov of Canada. Both teams were unseeded.
I'll have more links to signing announcements in a few days, but I wanted to single out a couple of former ITF Top 10 juniors who formally committed today. Cameron Norrie, who recently switched his ITF flag from New Zealand to Great Britain, has committed to the University of Michigan. The 18-year-old Norrie, currently No. 32 in the ITF junior world rankings but as high as 10 back in the spring, will enter Michigan next fall.
Wayne Montgomery of South Africa will be joining Georgia in January. Montgomery, a quarterfinalist at the Australian Open junior championships this year, has been ranked as high as No. 7. The 18-year-old has not played since the Wimbledon Juniors and is currently ranked No. 36.