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Monday, January 5, 2015

USTA Pro Circuit Futures Begin Tuesday in Los Angles and Plantation; US 14-and-under Team Undefeated on Opening Day in Russia

Tennis is officially back in the United States beginning Tuesday, when the main draw of both the $15,000 Futures in Los Angeles and the $10,000 Futures in Plantation get underway.

Qualifying was completed today at both locations and as is customary this time of year, many current and just graduated college players are among those earning spots in the main draw.  In Plantation, where it took four wins to get into the main draw, Florida graduate Florent Diep of France, Virginia sophomore Thai Kwiatkowski, Ohio State sophomore Herkko Pollanen of Finland, Illinois freshmen Aleks Vukic of Australia and Aron Hiltzik, are among those qualifying with wins in today's final round.  Spain's Jaime Fermosell, who received a wild card into the Orange Bowl last month and lost in the first round to Taylor Fritz, also qualified.

Christian Lindell of Sweden is the top seed, with wild cards going to Virginia graduate Justin Shane, Farzin Danny Amiri, Deiton Baughman and Jaume Pla Malfeito of Spain.

In Los Angeles, at USC's Marks Tennis Stadium, 16-year-old Nathan Ponwith and Mico Santiago were the only players without college ties to win their third and final qualifying matches.

UCLA graduates Clay Thompson and Adrien Puget, Columbia senior Winston Lin, USC senior Jonny Wang, North Carolina sophomore Ronnie Schneider and Virginia sophomore JC Aragone join Santiago and Ponwith in the main draw. Thompson and Schneider will meet in one first round match, with Wang and Puget another all-qualifier first round.

Wild cards went to Taylor Fritz, who will play top seed Dennis Novikov, fresh from two straight Futures titles in Mexico last month, USC senior Yannick Hanfmann, USC senior Eric Johnson and Stanford freshman Tom Fawcett, the latter two drawing each other in the first round. Stefan Kozlov, who spent much of his off season post-Orange Bowl training with the Bryan brothers, will play No. 7 seed Josh Milton of Great Britain in the first round.  Live streaming is available here.

 Coach Erik Kortland, Daniel Sharygin, Natasha Subhash, Kacie Harvey, William Grant
photo via USTA Player Development twitter account
In the oddly named Christmas Cup outside Moscow, which began today, all four of the American 14-and-under players who made the USTA-sponsored trip won their opening round matches.  Daniel Sharygin, William Grant, Kacie Harvey and Natasha Subhash are all unseeded in the 48-player draws.

This is a Grade 1 Tennis Europe event, and the field is strong. Eddie Herr and Junior Orange Bowl champion Anastasia Potapova, who trains at the Alexander Ostrovsky Academy, the site of the tournament, is the No. 1 seed in the girls draw. Timofey Skatov, also of Russia, is the top seed in the boys draw.

Complete draws and results can be found at the Tennis Europe tournament site.


Nadia said...

I love all of your recaps into the inside world of tennis and most helpful...but the "oddly named" Christmas cup took me aback. It should be no surprise to anyone as January 7 marks our Christmas in the Julian calendar for most Eastern Orthodox Christians. Thank you

Em said...

Exactly! Merry Christmas to all Orthodox Christians that celebrate on the 7th!