Sunday, August 16, 2015

King Wins Champaign Futures; Anderson Falls Just Short in Landisville; Fratangelo Clinches US Open Main Draw Wild Card; Bencic Claims Toronto Title

Kevin King, photo courtesy iphotonews.com 
Kevin King won his third career Futures title and first of 2015 today in Champaign, taking out unseeded Richard Gabb of Great Britain 6-3, 6-1 in the final. No. 4 seed King, whose previous two titles were back-to-back at $15,000 Futures last spring in Mexico, saved match points in his 6-1, 2-6, 7-6(8) quarterfinal win over Tommy Paul, but won his semifinal match over top seed Ramkumar Ramanathan of India 6-2, 6-2 and had a similarly convincing win today.  When the points from this week are added a week from Monday, the 24-year-old Georgia Tech grad will be back in the Top 300.

At the women's Pro Circuit tournament in Landisville, Pennsylvania, qualifier Robin Anderson fell just short of her first $25,000 title, losing to unseeded Naomi Broady of Great Britain 4-6, 6-4, 7-6(5).  The 25-year-old Broady had 17 aces and just one double fault in the match, while the recent UCLA graduate was 3 and 0 in those categories.

In the doubles final, Ivana Jorovic of Serbia and Jessica Moore of Australia beat Brynn Boren(USC) and Nadja Gilchrist(Georgia) 6-1, 6-3 in a final between two unseeded teams.

At the $100,000 ATP Challenger in Aptos, seventh-seeded Austin Krajicek lost to top seed John Millman of Australia 7-5-, 2-6, 6-3 in the final, meaning that Bjorn Fratangelo will win the USTA's US Open Wild Card Challenge.  Krajicek will, I'm sure, be considered from one of the three wild cards not yet designated by the USTA. 18s champion Sonya Kenin and Wild Card Challenge winner Samantha Crawford are guaranteed main draw wild cards, and NCAA champion Jamie Loeb is expected to receive one (it's not guaranteed however), plus the two reciprocal wild cards traded with Australia and France leave the number remaining at three.  Frances Tiafoe, Bjorn Fratangelo, Ryan Shane (again not guaranteed, but customary) leave three others to be handed out. That announcement should come out early this coming week.

This week's Pro Circuit action is in Canada, at the $100,000 events for men and women in Vancouver. Qualifying is underway, with UCLA's Mackenzie McDonald through to the final round of qualifying.  Main draw wild cards were given to Laura Robson of Great Britain, Gabriela Dabrowski of Canada, Vania King and Samantha Crawford for the women's draw and Ernests Gulbis of Latvia, Janko Tipsarevic of Serbia, Dennis Novikov and Alex Sarkissian are the men's main draw wild cards.

The Western and Southern Open, the joint ATP/WTA tournament in Cincinnati, has finished its qualifying, with Americans Denis Kudla, Christina McHale and Lauren Davis earning places in the main draw.  Two former junior slam winners, 2014 Australian Open boys champion Alexander Zverev of Germany and 2013 Australian and US Open girls champion Ana Konjuh of Croatia also qualified.  Zverev will play fellow 18-year-old Borna Coric of Croatia in the first round, with Coric holding a 1-0 edge in ITF junior play. In the 2013 US Open Junior championships, Zverev was the top seed, but lost in the semifinals to Coric, the No. 4 seed, 4-6, 6-3, 6-0. Coric went on to beat Australian Thanasi Kokkinakis, who also qualified in Cincinnati today, in the final 3-6, 6-3, 6-1.

The former junior slam champion who made the biggest splash today however was Belinda Bencic of Switzerland, who beat world No. 1 Serena Williams in the Toronto semifinals Saturday and world No. 3 Simona Halep of Romania today in the final 7-6(5), 6-7(4), 3-0, ret. having beaten Genie Bouchard, Caroline Wozniacki, Sabine Lisicki and Ana Ivanovic earlier in the week.

Bencic, who two years ago, at age 16 won the French and Wimbledon junior titles, will move to No. 12 in the WTA rankings with the title. Her rise has been notable for its consistent but not spectacular trajectory, and although she struggled a bit during the clay season this year, once she got on grass and won her first WTA title in Eastbourne, she has been playing outstanding tennis. Her confidence and competitiveness, on display throughout her junior career, are genuine, as seen in her results this week.

For more on all the "firsts" Bencic earned today, see this article from the WTA website.


WV Moonshiner said...


Are you going to be true to your adverse opinion on collegiate no-add scoring and stop covering ITA events and players? Or have you found religion and will attempt to provide unbiased journalism for the collegiate front?

Colette Lewis said...

I believe I've made my position clear: I will continue cover college tennis, but will not travel to do so.