Sunday, June 29, 2008

Elsewhere in Tennis....Devvarman Wins Rochester, Embree Takes Wichita, Keys Triumphs in Bahamas

The "rest day" at Wimbledon gives me an opportunity to pass along some of the other notable results this week on the Pro and ITF Circuits.

Two-time NCAA champ Somdev Devvarman won his first event as a professional today in Rochester, New York, defeating 16-year-old Alex Domijan of Florida 6-2, 6-2. Unseeded, Devvarman cruised past top seed Artem Sitak, with a 321 ATP ranking, by the same score in the quarterfinals and lost only 16 games in his five victories. He and Virginia teammate Treat Huey, who was commuting for qualifying matches in next week's Pittsburgh event, also took the doubles title. It was the same pair of results as at the Tampa Futures back in January, but this time, Devvarman and Huey can cash their winners' checks, not expense checks.

In Wichita, unseeded Lauren Embree won the $10,000 tournament, taking out Jamie Hampton in Sunday's final by a 6-3, 6-4 score. Although the 17-year-old had reached the finals in an event last summer, this was her first Pro Circuit title. Sloane Stephens and Christina McHale took the doubles title, making it a clean sweep for juniors.

For complete draws of the Pro Circuit action last week, visit usta.com.

Thirteen-year-olds Madison Keys and Sachia Vickery have quite a rivalry going, although they haven't played since the Orange Bowl 12s last December. Vickery reached the final of an ITF Grade 5 in Bermuda last week; this week Keys won a Grade 5 in the Bahamas. Christian Harrison reached the Bahamas final, losing to Japan's Yasutaka Uchiyama, who also won the week before in Bermuda. Vickery was recently the subject of a Sarasota Herald Tribune feature, which can be found here.

And to return to Wimbledon, where our focus will be tomorrow, here's an account of the Ryan Harrison and Vasek Pospisil match by Canadian Stephanie Myles of the Montreal Gazette. Even though she was there, I can't figure out where the third match point saved was in that second set tiebreaker. I know Harrison was down 5-6 and 7-8, but I'm missing the third one. Oh well. Interesting that she says Pospisil "undoubtedly has the best volley in the boys' juniors, period." I know he is an excellent doubles player, but that's a pretty strong statement from someone who doesn't regularly follow juniors.


Anonymous said...

if he played top notch tennis and has the best volley in junior tennis and is playing on grass which she said is his surface then how did he get beat. it sounds like she cant even get the facts straight on the no. of match points saved. looking at the draw it doesnt seem they did harrison any favors playing this kid 1st rd. and then playing the serbian kid next. talk about a tough draw.

Anonymous said...

third match point was at 4-5 30-40 in the second

Colette Lewis said...

Thanks for the clarification. I didn't think it could have been in the tiebreaker as she said. When I started scoreboard watching it was 5-5 in the second.

Brent said...

What is the world coming to when the Schuettler / Clement winner will be in the semis? Only makes the combined Roddick/Blake choke job that much more painful.

Anonymous said...

Living in London now I'm constantly reminded, not just by the people but by the quality of the publications here and in Europe, that no American should ever point the finger at someone from another country when they go a bit overboard in the praise of a countryman. A quick scan of Tennis magazine and the jingoistic warblings of Bodo, Bricker or any of our sports journalists should be enough to deter any of us from making taking petty shots at someone who has probably learned their trade from us.

On to the tennis. I've managed to see both the Harrison and Vandeweghe matches, coming away equally impressed and disappointed. Harrison looks the goods but his attitude was terrible. It isn't that he misbehaved but I've never seen a player who seemed so unhappy about being on court, especially on court at Wimbledon. His facial expressions were painful to watch and he looked for all the world like a child caught in two minds whether to burst into tears or let loose a primal scream. On the up side, Stefan Edberg was a bit petulant and whiny as a junior and he turned out brilliantly. All of that aside, I do believe that irrespective of how well he does at this event he needs a break.

Vandeweghe also looked the goods in a number of ways. Unfortunately, movement wasn't one of them. Lots of fun to watch, nice aggressive game, power galore and a wonderfully clean hitter of the ball but with the turning circle of a small bus. Of course Lindsay Davenport, Eleni Daniilidou and Alicia Molik have been able to overcome, for the most part, their mobility issues and have highly productive careers which should give Vandeweghe hope for the future.

Anonymous said...


right on the $$$$-in your assement of USA media (IMHO) - couldn't agree more and the results speak volumes

interesting take on the two players you watched-thanks for the first hand update

Anonymous said...

the kid is young, just turned 16 and is clearly the most talented american the game as seen in a while... the attitude comes from 1 thing, is willingness to die for the victory... its very normal for young talents to have a strong attitude... harrison had great success in houston and probably just feels that going from there to a second round lose isn't the ideal spot hed like to be in... from waht ive seen there were lots of times he wanted to go nuts but relaxed himself and calmed down... its no secret that he has the attitude that is very fiesty and competitive, but thats exactly what you need in a player... with time he will mature and learn how to control the fire in a positive way... and the second he does that... not only junior players watch out, but everyone who plays this kid... he hits the ball with the conviction and authority of a pro already, and his serve is a cannon for his age, while he definately needs to work on the percentage, with a fluent motion like that, it will not be hard to fix... this kid will be great.

Anonymous said...

Is it just me or is it blatantly obvious that man in the moon has a problem with the Harrison boy. Every time his name comes up he makes a respnse of some sort with a negative vibe to it. Lay off " Man in the Moon" he's 16 and he's American. Since his dads response to you a few months ago you have made it a point to be as negative and disagreeable about Ryan as possible and its obvious. Its also obvious that Colette has gone the other way so as to not sound biased toward the Harrisons and started printing more negative comments about him. The comment that was posted from Janie calling him a P***k was not just surprising but probably crossing the line no matter who it was about. It's the first time I have have EVER seen her post something with a vulgar word in it about someone personally like that. I wonder if that type name calling would have been printed if it were anyone else. Say what you want about Ryans attitude. He never quits. He was down 5-1 in the 2nd set and got back to 5-3 before losing. How many American kids have we seen lately who don't quit when playing poorly. Very few. Its why the people who have seen he and his brother play a fair bit think they have a bright future even if Man in the Moon doesnt want to hear anything positive about them. Ironic that he was working out with Johnny Mc the day before. Maybe he can help him with the anger management.

Anonymous said...

to tennis 101...to say Harrison is the most talented junior player is ridiculous. The kid is talented but it's a big leap to real success in the pros. So much hype was made of Donald Young and he still has yet to crack the top 50 and some say he may never make that leap. Harrison is good but there are too many unknowns to know how good. he is talenetd but he is not the only one out to here who got game.

Colette Lewis said...

family friend:
I have to defend janie (and myself) here. Someone had edited Ryan Harrison's wikipedia page to include that remark. Several readers mentioned it, I went to it, and that slur was there. Within hours of jesse calling attention to it, it was removed, and subsequent readers were baffled as to what the fuss was about. janie provided an explanation.

Anonymous said...

family friend who was there

"You can't be serious" to quote Johnny Mac.

I don't have a problem with Harrison -I have a problem with people like you who make comments about USA players touting them as the next coming of Sampras, Borg etc.
It does more harm than good - take a look at the Wall Street Journal article this week -- the WSJ is now coming to the same conclusion I made 3-4 years ago.

Don't make these young American players out to be World beaters when they win a couple of big time matches -- it is a HUGE leap from the juniors to the PROS- and you have to be consistent to really make it in the ATP and I am not just talking about the players game - but how he deals with everything else!!!

Americans tout the player from the age of 10 and -- how many examples do you want to see before guys like you and of course Harrison's Dad (which is expected) make him out to be the next Great American hope.

Do you remember Bo Hodge, Marcus Fugate, Brendan Evans, Brian Baker,Kellen Damico, Sam Warburg, Sukhwa Young, Jonathan Stokke, Luke Shields, KJ Hippensteel, Phil Simmonds, John Paul Fruttero, Scott Oudesma, Tim Smyczek, Todd Paul, Mike Mclune, Phip King, Amer Delic, Scoville Jenkins, Alex Bogomolov, Alex Kuznetsov, Jesse Witten, Ryan Sweeting, Rajeev Ram, Todd Widom to name a few. All the above players were touting as the next great American hope. Go have a chat with them now.

Here is a NOVEL approach -- how about letting the player achieve on the GRAND Scale- and THEN say what a great player he is-- not give him the entitlement UNTIL HE REALLY DESERVES IT -- so, stop with the CAN'T MISS label -- go talk to the players I listed above which doesn't even scratch the surface.

Take a look at the topic "First Round of Wimbledon Compete" for further comments

It is not the PLAYER I have a problem with it is people like YOU who have already ordained the player KING when he is barley a junior prince.

My approach with Donald Young and yes Harrison is not to annoint until they are "there" - are we as Americans that desperate to cling to hope of 14 and 16 year old players -- It hasn't worked yet!!

Anonymous said...

man in the Moon, When people talk about these kids on here they are talking about the kids POTENTIAL for the future. Nobody is annointing them king or queen as of yet. They are giving their opinion as to what they think they can do in the future and what they have done to present. What else can you go on and why is this or any other website here if not to give those opinions just as you do. Pat has been on here several times to respond to things involving his kids but do you remember a single time when he has touted his kids as the next big thing. Me either. He would never do that. As for the wikipedia entry. I also went to it and read it. I know it was a qoute from what someone read on there. I just dont rememeber Colette ever putting a personal vulgar quote on this website before about anyone no matter what the circumstances. There are quite a few of these kids who have information on them on wikipedia that was vulgar and uncalled for but it has never been reprinted on this website. It was just surprising that that type of vulgarity was repeated on here no matter what the circumstances. From speaking to Pat he doesnt seem to mind and takes it with a grain of salt but as a friend who knows his children well it was surprising.

Anonymous said...

family friend,

talk to the 25 players that I mentioned about in my previous post about potential- potential is worth less than a grain of salt - until it is coverted to kinectic - as in potential and kinectic energy.

The comments about Harrison were unfortunate in the Janie post and I did not comment except to say interesting.

Pat Harrison and I have differnt approaches to child rearing - the jury is still out on his kids (potential)- mine have already produced (kinectic) to speak in the vernacular.

Anonymous said...

The thing I find most promising about Ryan is that no matter how much success he has had in the past, he has never talked/acted like he has alerady made it. Looking at his press reports from the past every time he has been asked about how he handles being such a "prodegy" he simply says, " I believe in myself but there is a long way to go" or one of the most impressive quotes from a 15 year old, when asked about his tournament in houston right afterwards, he said " One tournament does not make a career, I'm not going to be the kid who peaked at 15"... Clearly his head is in the right place and he understands there is alot of work to be done. That is the biggest problem with all the people you mentioned... They get a hype at a young age, and think they have already made it. I think Ryan has to thank Pat for raising him to be humble and understanding that there is still alot of work to be done.

Anonymous said...

Wow! How arrogant of Man on the Moon. We understand you are Proud of your children and as you say, "that they have already produced.' Well who are you and your Children? Why don't you use your real name? We have several kids that have had some impressive results from the States, and yes they still have alot to prove. But juniors such as Harrison, Buchanan,Klahn, jenkins , Oudin in the girls etc., should be encouraged to keep striving to improve. They are the ones that have results and rankings right now. That may change. We all know that. They must keep working and playing to improve, or others will pass them up. These kids are still young are growing and maturing and if they are working to improve I would hope they would all have the proper support and encouragement to continue on. Its sickening listen to the pompous attitude of one who want sign his name.

Anonymous said...


I am not talking about the players - I wish them the best -

you jumped to a conclusion that when I spoke about my kids who are in their 30's -you thought incorrectly that I was talking ONLY about tennis.

Now I know how a person running for President feels.

Comments taken out of context, parts of sentences omitted, great leaps of assumption based upon nothing, misquoting of statements and implied knowledge without facts!

I have been called arrogant, pompous, elitist and a few other choice words by a number of people on this blog.

My comments to Pat Harrison still stand.

I have told my boys it is important to do what you ENJOY and get up every day looking forward to going to work -

An example of my approach to life and what has been passed on:

My son has stayed in Warren Buffet’s house for a weekend (you know the 2nd richest guy in America) and has met and worked with many Billionaires in his field of endeavor in New York finance.

Yet, his ALL TIME HERO is a SHERPA (porter) who he met while summiting Mt. Kilimanjaro in Africa. The Sherpa makes $3.00 / DAY.

Please don't think for me or make assumptions about me without fact!!

He also spent 1 day a week for a semester (while in Graduate School) in a Harlem junior high school teaching checkbook economics where he was the only white person in the school of 1500students,staff,teachers, etc. in a very bad part of town.

He has also volunteered in a hospital with terminally ill children and worked there for a week each summer from the age of 10-16(the only week he had off from tennis).

The boys also spent time (3 weeks) in Ghana, Africa building a library in a village of 400 people.

BTW they have also swam with sharks in Australia, survived the Tsunami in Thailand, run marathons, triathlons, tracked mountain lions in Russia, jumped out of airplanes in Argentina.

They were Academic All American tennis players, All Ivy and Academic All Ivy and between them have traveled to over 70 countries, so please don't talk to me about raising children- you do not have clue and it is not just about Tennis.

Elitist, I don't think so - or perhaps much the same elitist as Obama (the guy running for President)- yes, he attended to 2 ivy league schools but he certainly is not an elitist.

That's why I can sAY the jury is still out on the Harrison boys and not on mine - which has nothing to do with tennis.

That said I do wish the BEST for all the players mentioned, and ALL the other players that read this blog.

Just be SMART enough to have a back up plan!!! That is ALL I AM SAYING!!!

I call them the way I see them - arrogant or not- it is what it is -BTW there were 1,000's of lessons they learned from my wife and I- starting with compassion for others less fortunate!!

I am very familiar what top world class athletes go through -- it is great if you make it -- if you don't then what!! Talk to the 25guys mentioned in my above post date July 2.

Anonymous said...

Man in the Moon's credo seems to be, "If you can't say anything negative about the kid, don't say anything at all." Praising a kid is the worst thing you can do for them. Constantly downgrading them, on the other hand . . . now that's the way to go. If you can't summon up the strength to refrain from praising players, at the very least you should remain completely neutral and express no opinion whatsoever. Because if you do, and that kid doesn't make it, it's your fault. Even if they do make it (like Donald Young), negativity must persist. We must incessantly remind everyone of that player's flaws and failures. We must remind everyone of how he hasn't lived up to expectations. Anything less risks harming the kid's career and those who follow him. Only through extreme skepticism (and pessimism) and we develop the next wave of great American tennis players. Anyone who violates this creed must be repudiated in the strongest terms and exposed as a microcosm of a cancerous American culture that is gradually destroying American tennis. It's the Man in the Moon way. It's the right way. (Oh, but his kids are off limits. They've "produced." They deserve the praise.)

It is ironic that Man in the Moon complains about the overhyping and overexposure of juniors, yet is probably the most prolific poster on a junior tennis blog that arguably gives American juniors more exposure than just about any other source (which inevitably results in more praise and hype for players than they would otherwise receive). I'm not sure that Man in the Moon realizes his implicit criticism of Colette. I'm also not sure if he realizes how insolent, self-righteous, and hypocritical he sounds, which does a disservice to the good points he does make. There is merit to some of what he says. He just happens to go way overboard in a very obnoxious way.

Anonymous said...

once again David,

please don't speak for me -

in reference to Colette- she reports the tennis news for juniors, college players and some pros. She provids needed info - and yes she sometimes gives her opinion - which I frankly AGREE with 90% of the time -believe it or not- there are times I disagree wholeheartly and do voice my opinion.

Colette provides a needed outlet basically for the American player and when I say there absolutley isn't an impiclit critisim of Colette - I do with complete and sincere feeling - however if we do disagree - I will voice my opinion but certainly not about what she does for the sport of tennis and the juniors. I think she does a great job.

And David you know me well enough - that I call it the way it see it -good or bad.

This is a very fine point - I do not speak harshly of the players -
I speak harshly of the interpertations being made by the observers - no pun intened to the blog writers -observer,observant.

As I have said many, many times I wish the PLAYERS nothing but the best and to make sure they have a BACK UP PLAN -if the tennis thing does not work out-plain and simple.

You can certainly call me arrogant, insolent, self righteous, but not hypocrtical.

As I have mentioned ad nausam for the past 3 -4 years my vision of what is happening in Junior American Tennis have now been recently printed in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and tennis magazines by many different authors - even though they are 3- 4 years behind the times.

If that is a reason to be arrogant - than so be it - I just call them the way I see them - except I see it earlier than most.

Frankly, if I have been as you say "negative" on USA tennis - it seems that the NY Times, Wall Stree Journal, etc are seeing my point of view -- it is not a question of positve or negative it is called REALITY.

And pity the poor junior player who reads the PRESS CLIPPINGS, BLOGS, RADIO, TV, MEDIA IN GENERAL and believes in the clippings positve or negative -INSTEAD OF WHAT IS INSIDE IS HEART AND HEAD.