Roland Garros Junior Acceptances; More Conference Honors Announced; Kuhle Retires from Western Michigan
The acceptances for the Roland Garros junior championships were released by the ITF today, with eight US boys and 10 US girls receiving places in the main draw.
As customary at the French, the initial cutoffs are high: 45 for the boys and 49 for the girls. ITF Junior No. 1 Andrey Rublev of Russia, who won the French boys title last year, is one of three Top 10 boys not in the draw, with Stefan Kozlov and Roman Safiullin of Russia the other two. The only other player in the Top 45 not entered is Omar Jasika of Australia, which means the boys absentees are all junior slam winners (Safiullin 15 Australian, Jasika 14 US Open) or a finalist, with Kozlov making two last year.
The US boys received direct entry are Taylor Fritz, Michael Mmoh, William Blumberg, Reilly Opelka, Ulises Blanch, Alex Rybakov, Nathan Ponwith and Tommy Paul. Emil Reinberg is the only US boys in qualifying.
Paul is one of four boys receiving entry based on their ATP rankings, an unusually high number. The ITF requires an ATP ranking of 750 for direct entry for the boys and Theo Fournerie of France(488), Viktor Durasovic of Norway(498), Paul (596) and Juan Pablo Ficovich of Argentina(668) all met that criteria with room to spare.
Aziz Dougaz of Tunisia received main draw entry due to an exemption the ITF gives to the highest ranked player in a continent otherwise not represented, if they are ranked in the Top 80. Dougaz is 64.
In the girls draw, ITF world No. 1 Shilin Xu, who has not yet won a junior slam, is entered, but five of the top 20 are not, including No. 2
Iryna Shymanovich of Belarus, No. 5 Darya Kasatkina of Russia, the defending champion and three other junior slam winners or finalists: No. 13 Anhelina Kalinina of Ukraine (US Open 14), No. 14 Jelena Ostapenko of Latvia (Wimbledon 14 champion) and No. 20 Kristina Schmiedlova of Slovakia (Wimbledon 14 finalist). Current US Open champion Maria Bouzkova of the Czech Republic is entered, as is Australian Open champion Tereza Mihalikova of Slovakia.