Saturday, December 22, 2018

Querrey Wins California Open; What ITF World Junior Champion Chun Hsin Tseng's Pro Career Means for His Family; WTA Features Top 100 Teens

The inaugural California Championships Presented by UTR concluded today, and after all the upsets and surprises, the player with the highest UTR, Sam Querrey, ended up with the title.  Querrey(15.46) defeated University of Oregon senior Thomas Laurent of France(14.34) 6-3, 6-4 at the Jack Kramer Club in Rolling Hills Estates, California. Videos of matches from Thursday, Friday and today are available on Facebook, along with interviews of participants and others at the event.

The New York Times recently published a feature on ITF World Junior champion Chun Hsin Tseng of Taiwan, which details the sacrifices his family has made to help him follow his dream of playing professional tennis. His mother works the family's business, a stall selling a vegetable snack in the night market in Taipei, while his father, who is also his coach, travels with him to tournaments around the world. Although he has another year of ITF junior tennis eligibility left, Tseng is leaving the circuit to concentrate on his ATP ranking, currently 441, with the hope of not only becoming self-sufficient, but relieving his ailing mother of the need to continue to work long hours. The article examines Tseng's prospects for success, including an interview with Patrick Mouratoglou, who has provided Tseng training at his academy in France since Tseng was 13. 

The WTA website has feature articles on the three youngest players in the Top 100: Amanda Anisimova of the US, Anastasia Potapova of Russia and Dayana Yastremska of Ukraine.  Although 17-year-old Anisimova (US Open girls champion 2017) and 18-year-old Yastremska (Wimbledon girls finalist 2016) stopped playing junior tennis after those results, Potapova, 17, continued to play the ITF Junior Circuit after she won Wimbledon in 2016 in a successful bid for the ITF World Junior Championship.

Reaching the Top 100 as a teenager is not easy, particularly with the WTA age restrictions, which will still affect Potapova until March, when she turns 18, and Anisimova until August, when she turns 18. Injuries could also flatten their trajectories of course, and Anisimova has already endured a significant one this spring and summer, but there's little doubt this trio, along with No. 108 Olga Danilovic of Serbia, also 17, will add energy and excitement to the WTA Tour in 2018.