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Monday, October 5, 2015

Charleston $10K Abandoned Due to Rain; Paul Qualifies at Sacramento $100K Challenger; Tulsa ITA All American Qualifying Produces Surprises

Tennis was finally played today at the $10,000 Pro Circuit event in Charleston, South Carolina, with match tiebreakers played in lieu of a third set.  Caroline Price, who completed her eligibility at North Carolina this spring, reached the final, but the rain returned, and the tournament was abandoned.

ITF regulations allow for an extra day to complete a tournament due to bad weather, but no more than that, and with the other half of the draw unable to finish their semifinal match, having played a quarterfinal match earlier, it appears Price's second career appearance in a $10,000 final will be erased.  At least that's how I interpret this from the ITF rule book:

This week's $10,000 women's Pro Circuit tournament is also in South Carolina, farther south in Hilton Head, and they did manage to get all but one of the first round of qualifying finished Sunday. But they are a full round behind after rain today, so two rounds of qualifying are scheduled for Tuesday.

The final round of qualifying for the $50,000 women's tournament in Kirkland, Washington is scheduled for Tuesday, with USC graduate Sabrina Santamaria and former Alabama star Alexa Guarachi needing one more win to reach the main draw.  Sachia Vickery and Alexa Glatch are the top two seeds.  Wild cards went to Ashley Weinhold, Jacqueline Cako, Ellie Halbauer and Gail Brodsky.

The men are in Texas and California this week.  At the $15,000 Mansfield, Texas Futures, TCU sophomore Cameron Norrie and Oklahoma senior Axel Alvarez qualified for the main draw, as did 16-year-old John McNally.  Great Britain's Liam Broady, who won a Futures last week in Turkey, is the top seed, with Eric Quigley the No. 2 seed. Michael Mmoh returns to competition for the first time since the US Open Junior Championships as the No. 4 seed. Wild cards were given to Evgeny Korolev of Kazakhstan, as well as former college stars Nathan Pasha, Jeremy Efferding and Nick Chappell.

At the $100,000 Sacramento Challenger, Tommy Paul advanced to the main draw with three qualifying wins this weekend. Paul, the No. 6 seed, beat No. 3 seed Dimitar Kutrovsky of Bulgaria 6-2, 4-6, 6-3 today.  Marcos Giron, Nick Meister and Frederik Nielsen of Denmark are the other three qualifiers.  

Taylor Fritz, Sekou Bangoura, Alex Kuznetsov and Australian Matt Reid received wild cards and Mackenzie McDonald received a special exemption as a semifinalist last week in Tiburon.  Frances Tiafoe got in as an alternate and will play No. 4 seed and Tiburon champion Tim Smyczek tomorrow. Paul plays Kuznetsov and Fritz plays Connor Smith. There is live streaming again this week, available for free, here.

The final round of pre-qualifying and the first round of qualifying was completed today at the ITA All-American in Tulsa. Of the 16 pre-qualifiers, seven of them, plus one lucky loser, advanced to the second round of qualifying.  Ohio's States Matthew Mendez, who lost in the final round of pre-qualifying, won a qualifying match as one of three lucky losers, and the other seven won two matches today, giving them five wins in the past three days of competition.  They are Sam Matheson of Liberty, Jerry Lopez of TCU, Jose Salazar of Arkansas, John Mee of Texas, Cristobal Rivera of Loyola Marymount, Jakob Amilon of UNLV and Alfredo Perez of Florida, the only freshman in the group.  Lopez and Salazar are both transfers, with Lopez coming from Kentucky and Salazar from Oklahoma.

Matheson picked up the most unexpected win, defeating Michael Redlicki of Arkansas, who although not seeded, had the highest Universal Tennis Rating of any player in qualifying, 14.61.  Matheson, a junior from New Zealand, is rated 12.54, a rare case of an upset times two. UTR considers a 1.0 or larger difference as the definition of an upset in their system.

Complete results can be found at the ITA tournament page.

Speaking of college tennis, the ITA is asking college tennis alumni to take an anonymous survey. If you played college tennis, you have an opportunity to weigh in on its future.