Australian Open Draws Released as Qualifying Winds Down; Tiafoe, Baughman, Kozlov Reach Futures Quarterfinals; ITF Junior Update
The draws for the Australian Open were released this evening, with five US men and 16 US women in the fields. The US men--John Isner(19), Donald Young, Sam Querrey, Steve Johnson and wild card Denis Kudla--are all in the top half of the draw, with Kudla the only one of the unseeded four to draw a seed. He will play No. 12 seed Feliciano Lopez of Spain. Young, Isner and Johnson play qualifiers, while Querrey has drawn Canadian Vasek Pospisil.
The US women in the draw are: Serena Williams(1), Nicole Gibbs, Sloane Stephens, Taylor Townsend, Madison Keys, CoCo Vandeweghe, wild card Irina Falconi, Madison Brengle, Lauren Davis, Venus Williams(18), Varvara Lepchenko(30), Shelby Rogers, Alison Riske, Grace Min, Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Christina McHale. Townsend drew No. 8 seed Caroline Wozniacki, who just beat her in the second round in Auckland, and the winner of that match plays the winner of two-time champion Victoria Azarenka and Sloane Stephens, neither of whom are seeded this year. Brengle, who plays in her first WTA semifinal tonight in Hobart, has drawn No. 13 seed Andrea Petkovic and Grace Min has drawn No. 24 seed Sara Errani.
Complete draws can be found at the tournament website.
Meanwhile, qualifying is proceeding with at least five US men into the final round of qualifying. On Friday night (Saturday in Australia), Chase Buchanan, Michael Russell, Alex Kuznetsov, Tim Smyczek and Jarmere Jenkins will play for a place in the main draw and a minimum of the $34,500 that goes to a first round loser this year. Wayne Odesnik has not yet begun his second round match, nor have Alexa Glatch and Anna Tatishvili, who won their first round matches last night in the women's qualifying.
On opposite coasts and in opposite fashions, 16-year-olds Francis Tiafoe and Stefan Kozlov advanced to the quarterfinals of Futures events, as did 18-year-old Deiton Baughman. At the $10,000 tournament in Sunrise Florida, qualifier Tiafoe defeated Tommy Mylnikov of Canada 6-4, 3-6, 7-6(5) to advance to the quarterfinals against No. 7 seed Markus Eriksson of Sweden. Baughman came back to defeat No. 6 seed David Vega Hernandez of Spain 4-6, 6-2, 7-5. He will play 19-year-old qualifier Young Seok Kim of Korea, who surprised No. 1 seed Christian Lindell of Sweden 4-6, 7-5, 6-1.
At the $25,000 women's Pro Circuit event in Plantation, qualifiers Robin Anderson and Kristie Ahn advanced to the quarterfinals, as did Sachia Vickery and Samantha Crawford. Reigning French Open girls champion Darya Kasatkina of Russia, another qualifier, upset No. 2 seed Dinah Pfizenmaier of Germany 6-3, 7-5.
At the Grade 1 Copa Gatorade in Venezuela, Emil Reinberg(4) and Ulises Blanch have reached the third round, as have Anna Dollar(13), Andrea Kevakian(14) and Ndindi Mwaruka(8). At the Grade 1 in the Czech Republic, Kayla Day, the No. 8 seed and the only American in the draw, has reached the quarterfinals.
The final round of qualifying for the Grade 1 in Traralgon Australia is tonight(Friday in Australia). Just two Americans were in the qualifying, with Julia Fisch losing in the first round, and Stephanie Hazell(15) winning her first round match. The main draw begins Saturday (Friday night here in the US).