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Sunday, November 3, 2019

Di Lorenzo Claims Title at Toronto $60K, Glatch Falls in Tyler Texas $80K Final; ATP's Next Gen Finals Begin Tuesday in Milan

Francesca Di Lorenzo, the No. 2 seed, won her first title in nearly two years today at the $60,000 ITF World Tennis Tour in Toronto, defeating top seed Kirsten Flipkens of Belgium 7-6(3), 6-4 in a two-hour and 16 minute final. The 22-year-old Di Lorenzo, a former All-American at Ohio State, now has four singles title on the Pro Circuit; this is her first over the $25,000 level.

With the title, Di Lorenzo should move a few spots ahead of her career-high WTA ranking of 125; when I spoke to her in January about goals for 2019, after she was off four months at the end of 2018 with a foot injury, Di Lorenzo mentioned finishing in the Top 130, which seems quite likely now.  She also will take over second place in the USTA Australian Open Wild Card Challenge, behind last week's Macon $80K winner Katerina Stewart. Two more weeks remain in that competition.

Alexa Glatch fell just short of her first title since 2015, with the 30-year-old wild card dropping a 6-4, 6-4 decision to Mandy Minella of Luxembourg in the final of the $80,000 USTA Pro Circuit tournament in Tyler Texas. Although nowhere near her career-high WTA ranking of 102, reached ten years ago, Glatch will move to around 325, which will get her into a lot of main draws in tournaments $25,000 and above.

At the $15,000 tournament in Cancun, 15-year-old Rachel Gailis lost to University of Texas recruit Adrienn Nagy of Hungary, the No. 6 seed, 6-3, 6-2 in the final.

No. 5 seed Genaro Olivieri of Argentina won the $25,000 men's USTA Pro Circuit tournament in Naples Florida, beating unseeded Cristian Rodriguez of Colombia 7-5, 6-3 in today's final.

Vasek Pospisil, the No. 10 seed, won the ATP Challenger 80 in Charlottesville Virginia, beating fellow Canadian and top seed Brayden Schnur(North Carolina) 7-6(2), 3-6, 6-2 in the final. Mitchell Krueger and Blaz Rola(Ohio State) of Slovenia won the doubles title in a final between two unseeded teams. Krueger and Rola defeated Sekou Bangoura(Florida) and Slovenia's Blaz Kavcic 6-4, 6-1. It's the first Challenger doubles title for Rola since 2017 and the first for Krueger since 2016.

This year's Next Gen ATP Finals competition in Milan begins on Tuesday, with Frances Tiafoe representing the United States in the eight-player competition for those 21-and-under. Now in its third year, the tournament has always served as a innovation laboratory, and this year players are allowed to use "wearable technology." There is also video review for judgment calls from the chair umpire. I think those are the only additions this year, but there is a subtraction: the no-let rule is not being used. Playing lets on serve has been part of men's Division I college tennis for many years, and the ITF has been using it on its Junior Circuit since January 2018, but I gather from its absence in Milan this year that it's now unlikely to be adopted in professional tennis. 

The ATP preview, with the round robin groups and the order of Tuesday's matches, is available here. The explanation of the 2019 format and rules is here.

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