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Friday, November 27, 2015

My Eddie Herr ITF Preview, Qualifying Draws and Wild Cards; Day Reaches Yucatan Grade 1 Final; Gibbs, Brady in WTA 125K Semifinal

©Colette Lewis 2015--
Bradenton, FL--

Qualifying for the 12s, 14s and 16s divisions at the Eddie Herr are in full swing, and the dozens of hard courts were all occupied when I arrived on a warm and sunny Friday afternoon at the IMG Academy. The Har-Tru courts were being used for practice, with the ITF Grade 1 tournament beginning on Monday, and qualifying, which consists of three rounds over two days, starting Saturday.

Twenty US boys and 25 US girls are in the qualifying draws, with Hanna Chang the top seed and Hurricane Tyra Black the No. 3 seed.

My tournament preview for the Tennis Recruiting Network was posted this morning. When I wrote it, I didn't have access to the names of all the ITF main draw wild cards, but I have them now:

Andres Andrade, Ecuador
Nathan Perrone, USA
Sami Kirberg, USA
Trent Bryde, USA
Oliver Crawford, USA
Jake Van Emburgh, USA
Jason Legall, USA
Duarte Vale, Portugal

Amanda Anisimova, USA
Whitney Osuigwe, USA
Caty McNally, USA
Abigail Desitanikov, USA
Nathasha Subhash, USA
Ellie Douglas, USA
Nandini Das, India
Tate Schroeder, USA

Qualifying matches begin at 7:45 Saturday morning.  The draws and order of play can be found at eddieherr.com.

At the Grade 1 Yucatan Cup, top seed Sonya Kenin was beaten by No. 6 seed Anastasia Potapova of Russia 6-0, 6-4 in Thursday's quarterfinals. In today's semifinal, Potapova lost to No. 4 seed Bianca Andreescu of Canada 6-3, 7-5, in a rematch of last year's Junior Orange Bowl 14s final, which Potapova won.

Andreescu will play No. 5 seed Kayla Day in the final, after she won the all-American semifinal by downing No. 2 seed Usue Arconada 6-2, 6-3 tonight.

Arconada had defeated No. 7 seed Evgeniya Levashova of Russia 6-0, 5-7, 6-3 in the quarterfinals and Day had beaten No. 13 seed Maria Mateas 6-2, 7-5. 

The last remaining US boy, No. 8 seed Ulises Blanch, lost in Thursday's quarterfinals to No. 13 seed Kenneth Raisma of Estonia 2-6, 7-6(2), 6-2. Raisma has reached Saturday's final, but his opponent won't be determined until later tonight.

At the $125,000 WTA tournament in Carlsbad, California, Nicole Gibbs(5) and Jennifer Brady have reached the semifinals and will play each other.  Gibbs defeated No. 2 seed Tatjana Maria of Germany 6-4, 2-6, 6-1 in today's quarterfinals and Brady got past unseeded Marina Melnikova of Russia 6-2, 7-5.  CiCi Bellis, who had beaten Kat Stewart on Thursday to advance to the quarterfinals, lost to top seed Yanina Wickmayer of Belgium 6-4, 6-3. Wickmayer's opponent in the semifinals is Marie Sakkari of Greece, who beat Samantha Crawford 6-1, 6-7(3), 6-2.

At the $15,000 Waco Futures, Sekou Bangoura will meet Henri Laaksonen of Switzerland in the final.  No. 5 seed Bangoura edged Dennis Nevolo 3-6, 6-1, 7-6(1) and No. 2 seed Laaksonen topped No. 3 seed Nick Meister 6-3, 6-7(5), 6-4.  Bangoura has already secured one title this week as he and Matt Seeburger won the doubles championship.  The top seeds beat wild cards Julian Lenz and William Little, who play for Baylor, 1-6, 6-3, 10-6 in the final.