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Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Rain Disrupts Wimbledon Qualifying; Maureen Connolly Trophy Challenge Begins Thursday; Three USTA Pro Circuit Events Underway; Tulane Hires Brito to Lead Women's Program

Only 12 women's first round matches were completed today at Roehampton, the site of Wimbledon qualifying, before rain washed out play for the day.  Four American women finished their matches, with Irina Falconi and Kristie Ahn advancing and Grace Min and Taylor Townsend falling.

Ahn, the No. 6 seed, needed only 53 minutes to defeat Veronika Kudermetova of Russia 6-2, 6-1, while Falconi took out Tara Moore of Great Britain 7-5, 6-2. Min lost to Kateryna Kozlova of Ukraine 6-2, 6-3 and Townsend, the No. 9 seed, was beaten by Polona Hercog of Slovenia 7-6(7), 6-3.  The Wimbledon website has more details on Hercog's comeback in this article.

There were two notable junior results, with British wild card Katie Swan falling to Nigina Abduraimova of Uzbekistan 6-3, 5-7, 6-0 and 2016 Wimbledon girls champion and ITF junior No. 1 Anastasia Potapova of Russia beating No. 7 seed Patricia Tig of Romania 7-6(1), 6-3.

The annual Maureen Connolly Trophy Challenge, which features US junior girls against their British counterparts in eight singles and four doubles matches, begins Thursday in Southsea, where an ITF $100,000 women's tournament is taking place.

The British team is Emily Appleton, Francesca Jones, Holly Fischer and Emma Raducanu. The US team is Whitney Osuigwe, Claire Liu, Sofia Sewing and Taylor Johnson.  Johnson didn't enter Wimbledon, but is in the acceptances for the Grade 1 in Roehampton next week.   Two other girls, Caty McNally and Hailey Baptiste, are also traveling with the US team.  The US captains are Jamea Jackson and Erik Kortland; the British captains are Anne Keothavong and Jane O'Donoghue.

The USTA Pro Circuit again features two men's Futures and one women's $25K this week.  The men are on green clay in Pittsburgh for a $15,000 Futures, with last week's Rochester champion Mikael Torpegaard of Denmark the top seed.  He will play Ohio State teammate Kyle Seelig, who qualified, in the first round on Wednesday. A third Buckeye is also in the main draw, with Hugo Di Feo of Canada getting through qualifying; John McNally, who will join Ohio State this fall, lost his opening round match today.

After two weeks in North Carolina, the men have left Wake Forest for Tulsa, the site of a $25,000 Futures.  Austin Krajicek is the top seed. NCAA finalist William Blumberg received a wild card and picked up his first ATP point, beating Wil Spencer 7-5, 6-2.  Two other wild cards also picked up first round wins, with Oklahoma graduate Spencer Papa and Illinois rising sophomore Zeke Clark advancing in three-setters.

The women are in Auburn this week, with Baton Rouge champion Nicole Gibbs again taking a wild card card and the top seed.  Eighteen-year-old Jada Robinson and 16-year-old Emiliana Arango of Colombia reached the main draw through qualifying today.  The other six qualifiers all have college ties: rising Florida freshman McCartney Kessler, Florida's Josie Kuhlman, Pepperdine's Luisa Stefani(BRA)and Ashley Lahey, Georgia Tech's Paige Hourigan(NZL) and Alabama's Andie Daniell.  Auburn's Alizee Michaud, North Carolina's Alexandra Sanford and UCLA's Ena Shibahara received wild cards.

There is also a $25,000 Futures in British Columbia Canada this week, with Alex Sarkissian(Pepperdine) and Marcos Giron(UCLA) the top two seeds.

Tulane has announced its new women's head coach: Maria Brito. Brito has served as the assistant coach at Clemson, her alma mater, for the past four years. Briton replaces Terri Sisk, who resigned in April.


But Seriously said...

What's up with all the "retired"... and "walkovers" in tennis lately?...i guess Johnny Mac is right..."not hungry and angry enough"