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Friday, July 24, 2015

USA's World Junior Tennis Teams Named; Mmoh Reaches Godfrey Futures Semifinals; Daniell, Graham Advance in Evansville

The teams that will represent the USA in the ITF's World Junior Tennis 14-and-under team competition have been announced, with no changes in the teams that represented the USA in North American qualifying in Boca Raton several months ago.

Caty McNally, Hurricane Tyra Black and Amanda Anisimova will travel to Prostejov, Czech Republic for the girls competition among 16 nations, which begins August 3rd and ends August 8th.  Adam Neff, Brandon Nakashima and Govind Nanda will be one of 16 boys teams in Prostejov.  Both teams went undefeated in North American qualifying, and I anticipate the girls will be among the top seeds when the draw is made. Kathy Rinaldi will coach the girls team and Eric Nunez the boys team.

At the $15,000 Godfrey Futures, Michael Mmoh has reached the semifinals, the fourth time in his career that the 17-year-old has gotten that far (he has one Futures title). Mmoh, the No. 6 seed, beat Ben McLachlan of New Zealand 6-3, 6-1 today, and will play No. 7 seed Evan King, who took out wild card Nick Chappell by the same score.  The top half of the draw will be a rematch of the 2013 USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate men's final, with Clay Thompson facing No. 8 seed Jared Hiltzik. Thompson, who beat Hiltzik 6-4, 7-5 in New York, defeated qualifier Kyle Koch 7-6(2), 7-6(4), while Hiltzik came back to beat qualifier Gonzales Austin 3-6, 6-4, 6-4.  King and Thompson have both won Futures titles this year. Hiltzik is hoping to reach his first Futures final with a win Saturday.

Jordi Arconada of Argentina and Dominic Cotrone, the No. 4 seeds, won the doubles title in Godfrey, beating unseeded Fred Saba and John Lamble 6-4, 6-4 in the final.

At the women's $10,000 Pro Circuit event in Evansville, 17-year-old Alexa Graham and 18-year-old Andie Daniell have advanced to the semifinals, where they will play each other. Graham, the No. 7 seed, defeated qualifier Frances Altick 6-1, 6-1 and Daniell ousted No. 4 seed Francesca Segarelli of the Dominican Republic 6-3, 7-6(4).  Daniell, who will be starting at Alabama this fall, is through to her first Pro Circuit semifinal in singles. Graham has reached two finals at $10,000 events this year.

The other semifinal will feature qualifier Lauren Herring, the recent Georgia graduate, against Ulrikke Eikeri of Norway.

The Binghamton Challenger will feature two Americans, with qualifier Sekou Bangoura meeting top seed Kyle Edmund of Great Britain in one semifinal and No. 2 seed Bjorn Fratangelo facing No. 6 seed Brydan Klein, also of Great Britain, in the other.

The qualifying draw of the BB&T Open in Atlanta is out, with Tommy Paul, Reilly Opelka, Walker Duncan and Trent Bryde receiving wild cards.  Paul and Duncan, who were to be teammates at Georgia before Paul turned pro this summer, meet in the first round.