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Monday, September 26, 2011

Johnson Wins Second Consecutive Futures Title; Junior Fed and Davis Cup Competition Begins Without US Participation

I'm heading back home to Kalamazoo for a week or so before my annual trip to Tulsa, so as is customary on my travel days, I'll keep this post short.

NCAA champion Steve Johnson won his second consecutive Pro Circuit Futures title yesterday, defeating No. 5 seed Artem Sitak of New Zealand 6-3, 6-3 in the final. Johnson, who was the top seed at the Claremont Futures two weeks ago, was the No. 6 seed in Costa Mesa last week. For more on Johnson's streak, and information about his upcoming schedule, see this article at the ITA website.

By the way, Johnson's longtime friend and rival Bradley Klahn of Stanford, who was, like Johnson, planning to take the fall off to play in professional events as an amateur, is enrolled at school this semester. He is not completely healthy and will not play collegiate tournaments this fall, although he may compete in a few professional events if his schedule allows.

The ITF Junior Davis and Junior Fed Cup competition begins on Tuesday in San Luis Potosi Mexico, but the US will not have a team at the event. The boys did not qualify in the May regional, losing to Canada. The girls did qualify, beating Canada to advance to the 16-team competition, but as I tweeted over the weekend, will not be going due to a State Department travel advisory for the area. Here is the email I received from the ITF in response to my inquiry:

The USTA withdrew the girls' team from the Junior Fed Cup Finals due to the US State Department advising US citizens against non-essential travel to parts of San Luis Potosi state. The US team will be replaced by a team from Canada.

Stephanie Myles of the Montreal Gazette had a post on the situation on her blog Open Court.

The ITF has a preview on their junior website, which doesn't mention the US withdrawal.


get real said...

Agree with the USTA decision. Violence in many parts of Mexico, incl San Luis Potosi, is arbitrary, extreme, and underreported. Cartels control what gets reported by intimidating journalists who can be assassinated for reporting cartel violence. Because the best sources of how bad things are through unofficial means, we don’t know how bad it really is. It is irresponsible for the ITF not to move locations. The world’s a big place and there are a lot of safe countries.

Naive? said...

I may sound naive, but whatever drug dealers, kidnappers or terrorists there are in San Luis Potosi sure aren't going to differentiate between an American girl and a Canadian girl when they look and talk alike. I doubt they are going to say, "Hello excuse me, I need to see your passport first before I kidnap you, because we don't kidnap Canadians, only Americans." Or for that matter, would these criminals really target a junior tennis tournament at all?

Brent said...

For anyone who thinks the minor leagues of tennis is glamorous....I love the shot of Steve Johnson with the busted scorecard in the background. You stay classy, Costa Mesa. Classic!

wotten wun said...

Agree with @get real with respect to USTA's action to block US Girls' entry in San Luis Potosi stemming from safety concerns and share @Naive?'s puzzlement re: ITF's OKing Canadian participation and keeping events at SLP site.