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Thursday, January 5, 2017

Seven Americans Advance to G1 Coffee Bowl Semifinals; 2016 Australian Open Boys Champion Anderson Charged with Match Fixing; Indiana's Loring Retires; Swan's New Coach; All-Collegiate Futures Quarterfinals in LA

The quarterfinals of the ITF Grade 1 Coffee Bowl are not quite complete, with one more match yet tonight in Costa Rica, but regardless of the outcome of the match between No. 4 seed Vasil Kirkov and No. 10 seed Patrick Kypson, seven Americans will fill the eight semifinal spots Friday.

Last year both the boys and girls finals were all-American and this year the boys final is already guaranteed to be, with No. 5 seed Oliver Crawford facing No. 3 seed Trent Bryde in one semifinal, and the winner of the Kypson-Kirkov match meeting No. 2 seed Sam Riffice. Crawford defeated unseeded Sangeet Sridhar 6-2, 2-6, 6-4, while Bryde eliminated the last non-American, No. 8 seed Constantin Bittoun Kouzmine of France, 5-7, 6-1, 6-4.  Riffice advanced with a 7-6(3), 7-6(2) victory over No. 12 seed Sebastian Korda.

The US girls came close to having all four semifinalists, but No. 5 seed Victoria Emma lost to No. 2 seed Emily Appleton of Great Britain 6-7, 6-4, 6-1 tonight, after leading 4-1 in the second set.  Appleton will play No. 3 seed Sofia Sewing, who beat No. 8 seed Nicole Mossmer 7-5, 6-4. Unseeded Salma Ewing defeated unseeded Imani Graham 6-0, 6-1 and will face No. 6 seed Hurricane Tyra Black, who beat No. 13 seed Draginja Vukovic if Serbia 6-1, 6-3.  Black lost to Amanda Anisimova in last year's final.

For draws, order of play and a link to live streaming, see the tournament website.

Oliver Anderson
Last year's Australian Open was in the news before it even started when the BBC and Buzzfeed released a report on match fixing in professional tennis. The 2017 Australian Open is now 10 days away and again a match-fixing firestorm has erupted, with 2016 Australian Open boys champion Oliver Anderson charged with fixing a match at the Traralgon Challenger last October.  Anderson, who will be 19 in April, is alleged to have been approached to lose the first set of his first round match against fellow Australian wild card Harrison Lombe, which he did, in a 4-6, 6-0, 6-2 victory.  For more on the charges, see this article from The Age.

Anderson is not the first prominent Australian junior to be mired in a match-fixing case.  Although he was in his mid-20s at the time, 2006 Australian Open boys finalist Nick Lindahl was convicted of attempting to fix a match in 2013 and was sentenced this spring.

In college tennis news today, the University of Indiana's Lin Loring is retiring after 40 years as head coach of women's team.  Loring leaves after 44 years of coaching with 846 wins, the most victories of any Division I women's coach. The university immediately named longtime associate head coach Ramiro Azcui to replace Loring.  For more on Loring's career highlights, see the Hoosiers website.

Seventeen-year-old Katie Swan of Great Britain, who has lived in Kansas for several years and reached the ITF Grade B1 Easter Bowl final in both 2014 and 2015, will begin working with prominent British coach David Felgate according to this Daily Mail article.

The quarterfinals are set at the $25,000 USTA Pro Circuit men's Futures in Los Angeles and all eight players have collegiate ties(as did all 16 players in today's second round) Two current Virginia Cavaliers will face off, with No. 8 seed Carl Soderlund of Sweden facing qualifier Colin Altamirano.  No. 3 seed Emilio Gomez(USC) of Ecuador will face No. 6 seed Evan King(Michigan), unseeded Sebastian Fanselow(Pepperdine) of Germany will meet No. 4 seed Yannick Hanfmann(USC) of Germany and No. 2 seed Roberto Quiroz of Ecuador will play No. 5 seed Mackenzie McDonald.