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Thursday, January 24, 2019

Nava Reaches Australian Open Boys Semifinals; Two American Teams in AO Junior Doubles Finals; Hui Advances to Les Petits As Quarterfinals; 11 Americans Move On at ITF Grade 1 in Colombia

Emilio Nava overcame a heat delay to advance to Friday's singles semifinals at the Australian Open Junior Championships, while also earning a spot in the boys doubles final. Nava and Traralgon Grade 1 champion Jiri Lehecka of the Czech Republic had split sets and were 2-2 in the third set when play was suspended due to heat in Melbourne.

Tennis Australia has their own heat rule, and it was obvious earlier in the day that they were not abiding by the ITF junior heat rule, which suspends play when on-court temperatures reach 90 degrees. It was well over 100 during Nava's match and yet play continued, until finally all matches on the outer courts were suspended and the roof was closed on Rod Laver Arena, where the women's semifinal was taking place.

No. 13 seed Nava will face No. 4 seed Filip Jianu of Romania in the semifinals, with Jianu beating No. 9 seed Cannon Kingsley 7-6(5), 4-6, 6-2 before play was suspended for heat.  The other semifinal is an all-Italian contest between top seed and US Open finalist Lorenzo Musetti and unseeded Giulio Zeppieri.

Top seed Clara Tauson of Denmark will face unseeded Daria Snigur of Ukraine in one girls semifinal, with No. 4 seed Leylah Fernandez of Canada taking on unseeded Anastasia Tikhonovo of Russia in the other.

Nava and Cannon Kingsley will play in Friday's doubles final, as will Emma Navarro and Chloe Beck.  No. 4 seeds Nava and Kingsley defeated No. 2 seeds Jianu and Nicolas Alvarez Varona of Spain 6-3, 6-4 in Thursday's semifinals and will face the third-seeded Czech team of Jonas Forejtek and Dalibor Svrcina for the title.  Navarro and Beck, the No. 8 seeds, defeated unseeded Daria Frayman of Russia and Federica Rossi of Italy 7-6(2), 7-6(3) to advance to the final. They will play No. 3 seeds Natsumi Kawaguchi of Japan and Adrienn Nagy of Hungary in the final.

Danielle Collins fell to No. 8 seed Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic 7-6(2), 6-0 in Thursday's semifinal, leaving just one other American (aside from the juniors, of course) in the hunt for a title: Rajeev Ram.  Ram(Illinois) and Barbora Krejcikova of the Czech Republic, seeded No. 3, will face the Australian wild card team of Astra Sharma(Vanderbilt) and JP Smith(Tennessee) in the mixed final Saturday. Another Australian collegiate product, Baylor's John Peers, will play for the men's doubles title on Sunday, with Henri Kontinen of Finland. The No. 12 seeds face No. 5 seeds Nicolas Mahut and Pierre-Hugues Herbert of France, who beat Sam Querrey and Ryan Harrison 6-4, 6-2 in Thursday's semifinals.

At Les Petits As in Tarbes France, Katherine Hui has reached the quarterfinals in singles and the finals in doubles, while Cooper Williams and Kyle Kang have advanced to the boys doubles semifinals.  Hui, the No. 12 seed, defeated Bolton champion and Junior Orange Bowl 14s finalist Victoria Mboko of Canada, the No. 5 seed, 6-4, 7-6(6) to advance to a meeting with top seed Linda Fruhvirtova of the Czech Republic.  After the singles quarterfinals, Hui and Kayla Cross of Canada will play Linda and Brenda Fruhvirtova in the doubles final, with neither team seeded.  Williams and Kang, also unseeded, beat top seeds Mihai Alexandru Coman of Romania and Patrick Schoen of Switzerland 6-4, 6-2 to advance to Friday's semifinals.

Live scoring is available at Tennis Ticker and live streaming is available at the tournament's website.

At the ITF Grade 1 in Colombia, five US boys and six US girls have reached the quarterfinals. Four of the six American girls are in the bottom half of the draw, guaranteeing a US finalist. Katrina Scott, who beat No. 2 seed Gabby Price 7-5, 3-6, 6-3, is playing Emma Jackson and No. 4 seed Savannah Broadus is playing Ellie Coleman.  Top seed Alexa Noel and No. 12 seed Kailey Evans are in the top half, but do not play each other.

The US boys advancing to the quarterfinals are Keshav Chopra, Jacob Bullard, Will Grant[9], Martin Damm and Hunter Heck. Bullard and Grant are the only all-US quarterfinal.