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Sunday, June 3, 2018

Nakashima Defeats Molleker as US Juniors Post 9-5 Record on Opening Day at Roland Garros; Stephens, Keys Advance to Women's Quarterfinals

Sunday marked the first day of competition at the French Open Junior Championships with US juniors recording nine victories against five losses. Forty-eight of the 64 first round matches were played today, with the 16 scheduled for Monday, along with 16 second round singles matches and 16 first round doubles matches.

As I mentioned in yesterday's post, Brandon Nakashima got the worst draw of the 14 Americans playing today, but he proved up to the task, defeating No. 3 seed Rudolf Molleker of Germany 6-4, 4-6, 6-3.  Molleker was seeded No. 3 based on his ATP ranking of 301, which is primarily the result of his title last month at an ATP Challenger on indoor clay in Heilbronn. Nakashima, the 16-year-old from San Diego, has limited opportunities to train on clay and last week's appearance at the Grade 1 in Belgium was the first clay tournament he had played this year.

Molleker was the highest of the six boys seeds to go out today. No. 5 seed Hugo Gaston of France, the reigning Orange Bowl champion, lost, as did No. 10 seed Dalibor Svrcina of the Czech Republic, No. 14 seed Juan Cerundolo of Argentina, No. 15 Facundo Diaz Acosta of Argentina and No. 16 seed Drew Baird.  All ten of the girls seeds in action won, including No. 2 seed Xinyu Wang of China, who, in one of the toughest girls opening round matches, beat qualifier Varvara Gracheva of Russia 6-3, 7-6(5).

First round American Junior results Sunday, June 3:

Gergana Topalova (BUL) def. Natasha Subhash 6-4, 6-0

Caty McNally def. Francesca Curmi (MLT)[Q] 6-1, 6-1

Kamilla Rakhimova (RUS) def. Peyton Stearns[Q] 6-4, 6-2

Joanna Garland (TPE) def. Gabriella Price 6-4, 6-4

Lea Ma def. Ana Makatsaria (GEO) 7-6(5), 6-2

Katie Volynets def. Yasmine Mansouri (FRA)[WC] 6-2, 6-3

Coco Gauff[16] def. Stefania Rogozinska Dzik (POL)[SE] 6-3, 6-0

Sebastian Korda[2] def. Valentin Royer (FRA)[WC] 6-2, 7-6(2)

Cannon Kingsley[WC] def. Jonas Forejtek (CZE) 7-6(4), 6-1

Kyrian Jacquet (FRA)[Q] def. Drew Baird[16] 6-3, 3-6, 6-2

Jaimee Floyd Angele (FRA) [WC] def. Trey Hilderbrand 6-3, 6-3

Tristan Boyer[11] def. Luka Pavlovic (FRA)[Q] 7-5, 7-6(4)

Andrew Fenty def. Admir Kalender (CRO)[Q] 6-2, 1-6, 6-1

Brandon Nakashima [SE] def. Rudolf Molleker(GER)[3] 6-4, 4-6, 6-3

Americans in action on Monday, Day Two of Roland Garros Juniors:

Cannon Kingsley[WC] vs Nicolas Mejia (COL)[9]

Tyler Zink[Q] vs Gilbert Soares Klier Junior(BRA)*

Andrew Fenty vs Ray Ho(TPE)

Sebastian Korda[2] vs  Stefan Palosi(ROU)

Alexa Noel[4] vs  Iga Swiatek(POL)*

Dalayna Hewitt vs En-Shuo Liang(TPE)[1]*

Coco Gauff[16] vs Sada Nahimana(BDI)

Katie Volynets vs Yuki Naito(JPN)[10] 

Caty McNally vs Lulu Sun(SUI)[14]

*first round match

Four Americans who lost in qualifying received entry into the doubles draw: Chloe Beck, Emilio Nava, Keenan Mayo and Govind Nanda.

Nava is playing with Korda, and they are unseeded, drawing top seeds Sebastian Baez of Argentina and Thiago Seyboth Wild of Brazil. Baird and Colombia's Nicolas Mejia are the No. 4 seeds and Andrew Fenty and Uisung Park of Korea are the No. 6 seeds. 

In the girls doubles, Gauff and Maria Carle of Argentina are the No. 6 seeds, and Noel and Ana Makatsaria of Georgia are the No. 7 seeds. Caty McNally, probably the best doubles player in the draw, is playing with Swiatek of Poland and they are unseeded.

Draws can be found at the Roland Garros website.

Sloane Stephens[10] and Madison Keys[13] advanced to the women's quarterfinals today, with Stephens cruising past No. 25 seed Anett Kontaveit of Estonia 6-2, 6-0 and Keys beating No. 31 Mihaela Buzarnescu of Romania 6-1, 6-4.  Serena Williams plays No. 28 seed Maria Sharapova on Monday, and John Isner[9], the only American man remaining, takes on No. 5 seed Juan Martin Del Potro of Argentina.

In other ITF junior circuit action, the only US titles were in doubles, at the Grade 5 in Calgary, Canada.  Philip Jordan partnered with Cleeve Harper of Canada for the boys title, with the top seeds defeating Avato Arakaki of Japan and Max Fardanesh 6-4, 6-4 in the final. The top seeds also won the girls doubles title, with Madison Kim and Elizabeth Stevens defeating the unseeded Canadian team of Mia Kupres and Marina Stakusic 7-5, 6-3 in the final.