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Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Four US Girls, Two US Boys Reach Roehampton Grade 1 Quarterfinals; Novikov Advances at Wimbledon; McNamara Returns to Yale

Just a brief update while I try to stay awake for another four hours in an attempt to outwit the always devious jet lag.

Unlike Wimbledon, the Grade 1 grass court event this week in Roehampton finished their singles matches before the rain came this afternoon, with six Americans reaching the quarterfinals.  The US girls into the final eight are unseeded Michaela Gordon, who beat No. 6 seed Bianca Andreescu of Canada 3-6, 6-4, 7-5; unseeded Taylor Johnson, who beat British wild card Francesca Jones 6-4, 6-4; No. 7 seed Sonya Kenin, who defeated unseeded Monika Kilnarova of the Czech Republic 6-1, 6-3 and unseeded Maria Mateas, who defeated British wild card Eden Richardson 2-6, 6-4, 6-3.  All four US girls could make the semifinals, although Gordon is up against top seed Olesya Pervushina of Russia.  In their only previous meeting however, at last year's Wimbledon Juniors, Gordon won 1-6, 7-6(5), 6-2.

Two US boys have reached the quarterfinals, with No. 14 seed John McNally avenging his third-set tiebreaker loss to Ryan Storrie of Great Britain in the LTA Challenge last week, winning 6-4, 6-4 today.  Blanch defeated No. 15 seed Nicola Kuhn of Spain 6-1, 7-6(1). The boys team of Blanch and Vasil Kirkov are into the doubles quarterfinals, as are Gordon, Kenin, Johnson, Morgan Coppoc, Kayla Day and Claire Liu. Several second round girls doubles matches were not finished today.

Today at Wimbledon, former UCLA Bruin Dennis Novikov picked up his second ATP tour-level win, with a 4-6, 6-4, 7-5, 6-4 victory over fellow qualifier and 2011 Wimbledon boys champion Luke Saville of Australia. Oddly enough, Novikov's first ATP tour-level win came way back in 2012, when, with the wild card he earned as the Kalamazoo champion, the 22-year-old beat Jerzy Janowicz of Poland in the first round at the US Open. He plays No. 31 seed Joao Sousa of Portugal on Thursday.  Novikov joins Sam Querrey(28), Jack Sock(27) and Steve Johnson in the second round with Donald Young and John Isner(18) not yet finished with their first round matches.

Danielle McNamara returns to Yale
In college tennis news, Danielle McNamara has returned to Yale as the women's head coach, after one year at Texas in 2014-15.  She was head coach at Yale from 2006-14. For more on her return, see the Yale website.