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Monday, March 3, 2014

Bollettieri Among International Tennis Hall of Fame Inductees; Men's Qualifying, Women's Main BNP Paribas Draws; Notre Dame's Dooley Comes Out

Today is World Tennis Day, a perfect day to announce the International Tennis Hall of Fame inductees for this July's ceremonies. Finally, after twice being denied induction, 82-year-old Nick Bollettieri has been tapped for admittance, as has Lindsay Davenport, former USTA president and CEO Jane Brown Grimes, BBC announcer John Barrett and Paralympian Chantal Vandierendonck.  That Bollettieri could be denied induction never made sense to me, as he changed the landscape of the sport as few have or will, but now that he's in, there's no point in dwelling on the past.  Chris Clarey of the New York Times provided this feature on Bollettieri in Saturday's paper.

The men's qualifying draw for the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells has just been released, with many former and a few current* college players among the 48 participants. Let me know if I've missed anyone.

Somdev Devvarman(1), Virginia
Greg Ouellette, Florida
James McGee, North Carolina State
Dan Kosakowski, UCLA
Marcos Giron(WC), UCLA*
Clay Thompson(WC), UCLA*
Bobby Reynolds(23), Vanderbilt
Robert Kendrick, Pepperdine
Nick Meister(WC), UCLA
Jesse Witten, Kentucky
Austin Krajicek, Texas A&M
Raymond Sarmiento(WC), USC*
Ted Angelinos, Virginia
Miguel Reyes-Varela, Texas
JP Smith, Tennessee

Sixteen-year-old Stefan Kozlov received a wild card and will play No. 22 seed Sam Groth of Australia in the first round of qualifying, which begins Tuesday. The order of play is here.

In the women's qualifying today, Irina Falconi and Grace Min lost, but Madison Brengle and Allie Kiick advanced to the second round. Kiick beat No. 19 seed Mandy Minella 6-3, 6-0, avenging her 6-0, 6-0 loss to Minella last fall in a Florida $50,000 Challenger.

The women's main draw was released today. Wild card Vicky Duval drew Alisa Kleybanova of Russia, wild card Taylor Townsend will play Italy's Karin Knapp and world No. 1 junior Belinda Bencic, also a wild card entry will face a qualifier.

Complete draws can be found here.

Last fall I posted a link to this New York Times story about Fresno State women's coach Simon Thibodeau announcing he is gay. Today Matt Dooley, a senior on the Notre Dame team, posted this courageous and often harrowing account of his difficult journey to that same announcement to his family, his friends and his teammates.  According to the Outsports.com article, Dooley is now working with the You Can Play Project to create an inclusive atmosphere in sports, regardless of sexual orientation.


Ricky said...

Thanks for sharing the story about Dooley -- very courageous step from him and very inspiring.