Schedule a training visit to the prestigious Junior Tennis Champions Center in College Park, MD by clicking on the banner above

Wednesday, July 3, 2024

June Aces; Wimbledon Junior Qualifying Features Seven Americans; Jovic Reaches ITF J300 Roehampton Semis; Gauff and Navarro Make Wimbledon Third Round; Tien Comes Back for 17th Straight Win

My monthly Aces column for the Tennis Recruiting Network features 19 juniors, collegians and former collegians who had exceptional results in tournaments on the three major surfaces, with the levels ranging from the $15,000 SoCal Pro Series to WTA 500s. Tracking all these results isn't easy, and I never have enough time and space for every title of the month, but many of these players are those you'll hear about in the future, so get some background now.

Qualifying begins in Roehampton Thursday for the Wimbledon Junior Championships, with seven Americans competing for a place in the main draw.  Shannon Lam and Matthew Forbes are not in the qualifying draws and were very close to main draw at the freeze deadline, so I assume they both moved into the main draw at the last minute.

Noah Johnston, who swept the J200 titles in Mexico last Saturday night, is in the Wimbledon qualifying draw, where he is the No. 2 seed. Kase Schinnerer and Stiles Brockett are the other two US boys in qualifying. The four US girls in qualifying are Christasha McNeil, Mia Slama, Annika Penickova and Maya Dutta.

The semifinals are set for the ITF J300 at Roehampton, with Iva Jovic in the singles and doubles semifinals, and Kaylan Bigun and Jagger Leach in the doubles semifinals.

No. 5 seed Jovic defeated No. 16 seed Rositsa Dencheva of Bulgaria 6-2, 6-4 and will face top seed Laura Samson of the Czech Republic. Jovic and Samson played in the Roland Garros quarterfinals with Samson getting a 6-7(4), 6-4, 7-5 victory. In the other semifinal, No. 14 seed Teodora Kostovic of Serbia will play No. 2 seed Emerson Jones of Australia.

Wild card Mark Ceban of Great Britain is into the boys semifinal, where he will play unseeded Rafael Jodar of Spain, a rising freshman at Virginia. In the bottom half, unseeded Charlie Robertson will play No. 7 seed Maxim Mrva of the Czech Republic.

Jovic and Tyra Grant, the No. 2 seeds in doubles, will play the unseeded team of Malak El Allami of Morocco and Vendula Valdmannova of the Czech Republic in the semifinals.

Bigun and Leach, also the No. 2 seeds, will face unseeded Henry Bernet and Flynn Thomas of Switzerland in the semifinals.

There were more weather delays Wednesday at Wimbledon, but they are not technically behind schedule if they manage to finish the second round on Thursday.  

2021 NCAA champion Emma Navarro(Virginia) scored an impressive 6-4, 6-1 victory over Naomi Osaka of Japan to reach the third round, where she'll play, for the second week in a row, former NC State All-American Diana Shnaider of Russia. Shnaider, who is featured in my Aces column for her win at the Bad Homburg WTA 500 last week, defeated Navarro 7-5, 2-6, 6-3 in the semifinals there.

Wednesday's results of Americans:
First round:
Katie Volynets[Q] d. Maria Carle(ARG) 6-2, 7-5
Camila Osorio(COL) d. Lauren Davis 6-3, 6-1
Danielle Collins[11] d. Clara Tauson(DEN) 6-3, 7-6(4)

Quentin Halys[Q](FRA) d. Chris Eubanks 6-4, 6-4, 6-2
Emil Ruusuvuori(FIN) d. Mackenzie McDonald 7-6(4), 4-6, 5-7, 7-6(6), 6-3

Second round:
Brandon Nakashima d. Jordan Thompson(AUS) 6-3, 6-2, 6-2
Frances Tiafoe[29] d. Borna Coric(CRO) 7-6(5), 6-1, 6-3
Tommy Paul[12] d. Otto Virtanen[Q](FIN)4-6, 6-3, 5-7, 7-5, 6-4

Emma Navarro[19] d. Naomi Osaka(JPN) 6-4, 6-1
Coco Gauff[2] d. Anca Todoni[Q](ROU) 6-2, 6-1
Diana Shnaider(RUS) d. Sloane Stephens 6-1, 6-1

Thursday's second round matches featuring Americans:

Marcos Giron v Alexander Zverev[4](GER)
Taylor Fritz[13] v Arthur Rinderknech(FRA)
Ben Shelton[14] v Lloyd Harris(RSA)

Robin Montgomery[Q] v Ons Jabeur[10](TUN)
Jessica Pegula[5] v Xinyu Wang(CHN)
Danielle Collins[11] v Dalma Galfi[Q](HUN)
Madison Keys[12] v Yafan Wang(CHN)
Katie Volynets[Q] v Barbora Krejcikova[31](CZE)
Bernarda Pera v Caroline Garcia[23](FRA)

At the ATP Challenger 75 in Bloomfield Hills, 18-year-old Learner Tien(USC) extended his 17-match winning streak the hard way, coming from 6-0, 4-2 down to beat No. 8 seed Bu Yunchaokete of China 0-6, 7-5, 6-0.  A rematch of the 2022 Kalamazoo 18s final with Ethan Quinn(Georgia) was looming in the quarterfinals, but Quinn lost to Philip Sekulic of Australia 3-6, 7-5, 7-6(4). Qualifier Stefan Kozlov is through to the quarterfinals and will play the winner of the late match between top seed JJ Wolf and Yuta Shimizu of Japan.