August 25, 2016

US Open National Playoffs Begin on Friday at the Connecticut Tennis Center at Yale


WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., August 18, 2016 – The USTA today announced the 16 men and 16 women who will compete in the US Open National Playoffs – Men’s and Women’s Singles Championships, held Aug. 19-22 at the Connecticut Tennis Center at Yale in New Haven, Conn. The tournament is held in conjunction with the Connecticut Open presented by United Technologies, the final Emirates Airline US Open Series women’s event of the summer.

The respective men’s and women’s US Open National Playoffs winners will receive a wild card into the 2016 US Open Qualifying Tournament, held at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing, N.Y., the home of the US Open, Aug. 23-26.

In all, 1,127 players (735 men and 392 women) competed in the seventh year of the US Open National Playoffs in singles at one of 15 Sectional Qualifying Tournaments held throughout the United States, with the winners and select runners-up qualifying for the Championships. The US Open National Playoffs are designed to bring the spirit of the US Open to cities and sections across the country, making the US Open eligible to anyone and everyone 14 and over with the passion to compete, regardless of playing ability or nationality.

Men’s Singles Preview

Three men competing in the US Open National Playoffs – Men’s Championship have competed at the US Open: Gage Brymer (2013 qualifying), Tyler Hochwalt (2005 and 2006 juniors) and Jesse Witten (2006 and 2009 singles; six times in qualifying).

Nearly all of the participants have played college tennis, and five will be playing collegiately this fall: Brymer (UCLA), Shawn Hadavi (Columbia), Martin Joyce (Ohio State), Eric Rutledge (Rice) and Terrence Whitehurst (Florida State). In addition, nine players were college standouts: Henry Craig (Denver), Hochwalt (Florida), Patrick Kawka (BYU), Evan King (Michigan), Hunter Koontz (Virginia Tech), Nicolas Meister (UCLA), Eric Quigley (Kentucky), Cameron Silverman (Elon) and Witten (Kentucky).

Four of these players will be participating in at least one other US Open National Playoffs Championship event. Kawka and Meister will also be competing in the Men’s Doubles Championship, while King will be competing in the Mixed Doubles Championship. Quigley will be competing in all three events.

The oldest player in the Men’s Singles Championship is the 33-year-old Witten, who won last year’s National Playoffs Men’s Singles Championship. Joyce and Rutledge are the youngest players at 19. 

Women’s Singles Preview

Four women competing in the Women’s Singles Championship will be vying for a chance to return to the US Open stage after competing at the US Open previously: Jacqueline Cako (2014 mixed doubles), Julia Elbaba (2010 and 2011 juniors), Ayaka Okuno (2011, 2012 and 2013 juniors), and Ashley Weinhold (2006 mixed and women’s doubles; 2007 singles, women’s doubles and mixed doubles; 2006, 2011 and 2012 qualifying).

Five of the women competing will be participating in multiple events at this year’s US Open National Playoffs Championships. Sophie Chang, Nika Kukharchuk, Sanaz Marand and Ashley Weinhold will be playing in two events, while Jacqueline Cako will be taking part in all three championship events open to women: singles, doubles and mixed doubles.

Cako, a former Arizona State University All-American, is the only woman at the US Open National Playoffs Championships who is a past National Playoffs champion; she teamed with Joel Kielbowicz in 2014 to win the Mixed Doubles Championship. Margaryta Bilokin, a standout junior player in New England, is the youngest player in the competition at age 15. She is joined by teenagers Sara Choy, 16; Elyse Lavender, 17; Daavettila, 18; Fernanda Contreras Gomez, 18; and Chang, 19. 

The oldest player in the Women’s Singles Championship is the 29-year-old Kukharchuk, who has been here before. Kukharchuk advanced past the sectional qualifying tournament stage each year from 2012 through 2014.

The US Open National Playoffs – Women’s Doubles Championship field will take place Aug. 20-23, the Men’s Doubles Championship field will take place Aug. 21-24, and the Mixed Doubles Championship will take place Aug. 24-27. The winning teams in the doubles draws earn main draw wild cards into the US Open. In all, 994 players (408 men’s doubles, 200 women’s doubles, 386 mixed doubles) competed in the seventh year of the US Open National Playoffs in doubles at one of 15 Sectional Qualifying Tournaments held throughout the United States, with the winners and select runners-up qualifying for the Championships. 

The US Open men’s and women’s doubles championships begin Aug. 30 and the US Open mixed doubles championship begins Aug. 31 at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing, N.Y.

The 2016 US Open is scheduled to take place from Aug. 29 to Sept. 11.

US Open National Playoffs information is available at 


New Retractable Roof over Ashe Stadium, New Grandstand and Fan Enhancements at 2016 US Open



Expanded Southern Campus Provides More Seats, More Shade,

More Concessions and More Activities for Fans

Community Day on Thursday, September 8, with Fans’ Salute to Louis Armstrong Stadium; Replacement of Stadium is Final Phase of Overall Site Transformation

From the USTA: White Plains, N.Y., August 18, 2016 – The USTA today announced a series of physical improvements, fan and player upgrades, and new sponsor activations which will be unveiled at the 2016 US Open.  The main draw of the tournament begins on Monday, August 29, and concludes on Sunday, September 11.  The US Open Qualifying Tournament, which is free and open to the public, begins on Tuesday, August 23, and concludes on Friday, August 26.

Strategic Transformation of the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center

  • Retractable Roof Operational over Arthur Ashe Stadium

More than 13 million pounds of steel now surround Arthur Ashe Stadium in a technological first – constructing a stand-alone support system for a retractable roof over an existing stadium.  The two million-pound retractable panels with attached PTFE fabric membrane close in under seven minutes, and will allow scheduling consistency for fans, players and US Open television partners.  The retractable roof is the largest of any tennis stadium in the world, with a 62,500 square foot opening that is larger than the area of a football field. 

  • New Grandstand Stadium

After more than 18 months of construction, the new Grandstand Stadium will be debuted at the 2016 US Open.  The sunken court, surrounded by 8,125 seats, retains the intimate viewing experience of the old Grandstand.  Now located in the southwest corner of the campus, the new Grandstand will be surrounded by expanded retail and food concessions, including a new Food Village that will alleviate some of the congestion of the main Food Village on the eastern edge of the campus.

  • New Boulevard Traversing the Southern Campus and Southern Field Courts

Another major accomplishment of the overall strategic transformation of the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, was the creation of a picturesque boulevard connecting Court 17 in the southeast and the new Grandstand in the southwest.  The 500-foot-long, and 40-foot-wide boulevard provides fans with easier movement, new and roomier sponsor activity centers, more shade and more amenities. 

  • Southern Field Court Seating

Additional seating has been added to all new southern field courts.  In all, a total of 2,099 new seats have been added to this portion of the facility.  Similar to the seating design at the West Stadium Courts (Courts 4, 5 and 6), fans will be able to freely move over a connected seating structure between Courts 8, 9 and 10, and Courts 13, 14, 15, and 16.

Fan Enhancements at the 2016 US Open

  • Community Day, Thursday, September 8

Following its debut at the 2015 US Open, the USTA is re-instituting complimentary grounds admission to all fans who come during the day (12 noon to 6 p.m.) of the tournament’s second Thursday, September 8.  The day’s action will be filled with doubles play, including the Men’s Doubles Semifinals and Women’s Doubles Semifinals, as well as semifinal action in the Champions Invitational, a showcase of former Grand Slam tournament champions and finalists.  Also on the slate that day will be the third year of the American Collegiate Invitational as well as the world’s top boys and girls competing in the US Open Junior Championships. 

  • Salute to Louis Armstrong Stadium

On Thursday, September 8, the USTA also will give a final salute to Louis Armstrong Stadium by allowing fans access to the Stadium for a final time.  A pro exhibition and a trick shot competition for fans led by some the world’s best tennis trick shot artists are two of the scheduled activities for that day.  Fans also will be invited onto the court to play on Louis Armstrong before it is shuttered for the final time. Louis Armstrong Stadium will be replaced by a new state-of-the-art stadium for the 2018 US Open.

  • Bradley Theodore Art Installation

To commemorate the last year of Louis Armstrong and the old Grandstand structure, the US Open is partnering with acclaimed NYC artist, Bradley Theodore, who will develop a series of four murals within the Great Hall in Louis Armstrong. The murals will pay homage to iconic individuals associated with both stadiums including Serena and Venus Williams, John McEnroe, Billie Jean King and Louis Armstrong. After the US Open, one of the murals will be donated to the USTA Foundation for auction to further support the mission of growing the game of tennis.

  • US Open American Express Fan Experience

In line with American Express’ tradition of adapting the latest technology to create unique, never-before-seen experiences, the Pro Walk, located in the US Open American Express Fan Experience, gives attendees the opportunity to take a virtual walk from the player locker room to the court in the newly renovated Arthur Ashe Stadium, just like a pro. The experience combines digital replicas of the player locker room and tunnel, virtual appearances by former US Open champions Pete Sampras and Monica Seles, three-dimensional sound and a dome projection of the stadium to make it truly feel like you’re on the US Open’s main stage.

  • CHASE Charge & Watch Program

Building on the success of the Chase sponsored US Open phone-charging program, this year fans can pick up a mobile charging device from the Chase booth located next to the Food Village to fully charge their smartphones and stay connected to the tournament.  When connected to the US Open mobile app, the charging unit also will deliver live video to the fan’s phone.  The devices, which work through the on-site radio frequencies, will only work on the grounds of the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. 

  • New Food Offerings

This year’s US Open will bring new and innovative dining spaces throughout the grounds to create a truly unique variety of culinary choices for foodies and fans alike. New dining locations include the Grandstand Food Village, Oyster Bar 7, Court 12 Concessions, and the expanded South Plaza area. New partners include Toro featuring a menu by James Beard Award-winning Chefs Ken Oringer and Jamie Bissonnette, BLT Prime at Champions by Chef David Burke, Fuku fried chicken by Chef David Chang, Angry Taco and BLT Fish Shack by Chef David Burke/BLT Group. Korilla BBQ, SoomSoom(falafel) & Neapolitan Express featuring organic non GMO authentic neapolitian pizza. Pat LaFrieda Meat Co. moves to the newly expanded South Plaza along with a redesigned Wine Bar Food by Tony Mantuano. Additionally, Grey Goose will debut a new bar in the Grandstand Food Village along with a new cocktail, Grey Goose Le Grand Fizz, a blend of Grey Goose Vodka, St-Germain Elderflower Liqueur, soda water and lime for a refreshing summer cocktail. The main Food Village will feature a new Jacob’s Creek bar showcasing the winemaker’s “Two Lands” wines.  The Moet & Chandon Terrace returns to the patio area near the US Open Club this year as well.

  • Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day Presented by Hess

For the 21st consecutive year, Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day presented by Hess, the world’s biggest tennis and entertainment celebration, kicks off the US Open on Saturday, August 27, airing  for the first time on ABC Network on Sunday, August 28 from 2:00 – 3:00 PM ET.  This year’s stars include multi-platinum hip-hop artist Flo Rida, international pop star Zara Larsson, award-winning Disney Channel actress Laura Marano, Entertainment Weekly’s “One To Watch” Jordan Fisher, breakout pop band Forever In Your Mind and Australian singer-songwriter Troye Sivan.  The show will be hosted by Disney Channel’s Joey Bragg and will feature a number of top tennis stars including Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal, and a special appearance by film actor and DJ, Ansel Elgort.

  • International Music Legend Phil Collins to Perform on Opening Night

Generational icon and cultural legend Phil Collins will perform during the Opening Night Ceremony on the evening of Monday, August 29, in Arthur Ashe Stadium.  The performance, Collins’ first major public appearance in six years, will be televised live by ESPN2 in the United States and by a host of international broadcasters around the world.  Collins will be joined for a special duet by Leslie Odom, Jr., a Queens, N.Y. native, who recently won a Tony Award for his performance as Aaron Burr in the hit play “Hamilton.”  Odom, Jr., also is slated to sing the National Anthem that evening. The Ceremony will feature expanded technology, incorporating more than 100 LED moving lights hung from trusses along the east and west catwalks, spanning more than 300 feet, designed to spotlight the new roof.

  • Nightly Light Show with Lasers

Debuting last year, the USTA added a nightly light show during the evening sessions of the tournament.  This year’s show will include lighting positions in all 20 promenade voms, with the addition of color mixing large format lasers which will create impactful beams of defined light that will be choreographed with the rest of the lighting system to showcase the new roof and enhance player introductions.

US Open Technology

  • Times Square Takeover

Fans in Times Square on August 25 will be invited by US Open brand ambassadors to take their selfies to the next level thanks to the US Open selfie takeover. Photos of US Open players, fans and signature elements of the experience will rotate on a series of billboards in the heart of Times Square on 42nd and Broadway. Fans will also be treated to a special Snapchat filter to highlight their participation. These filters will play on signature elements of the US Open experience (i.e. the blue courts, lobster roll, iconic trophies) to allow fans to show their enthusiasm for the US Open.

  • US Open “Selfie” Fancam

For the first time, fans in Arthur Ashe stadium will be able to use their phones to remotely control cameras to zoom into their location, take and share the ultimate fan selfie on their social media accounts.  Fans will go to, enter their seat location, and then will have control of one of eight cameras in-stadium.

  • US Open APP Enhancements

New for 2016, the US Open app debuts US Open Guest Information Presented by American Express.   “Guest Info” delivers comprehensive listed information that assists fans in navigating the US Open in real time.  Guest Info is an intelligent engagement platform that leverages location services to put Guest Services directly in the hands of US Open attendees.  The feature will provide all the closest, most relevant points of interest tailored to the fan’s specific location on the grounds.   

  • Open Access

Open Access returns for 2016, providing the single fan registration platform that enables US Open attendees to gain access to unique experiences delivered by official US Open partners throughout the grounds and be entered to win tickets, hospitality upgrades, and other prizes.  Fans register once either in the US Open app or on  They then receive a unique 7-digit QR code to scan at every activation. At the end of the day, fans will receive personalized photos and videos of their US Open experience. 

  • US Open Social Media Enhancements

The US Open is expanding its social media impact with a number of new enhancements this year. Among them, the first US Open branded emoji keyboard in partnership with YourMoji, a series of custom Snapchat filters for US Open fans playing on the signature elements of the US Open, and a special photo and video experience for players at their check-in, where they can showcase their personality and pose with props including custom designed racquet art by former player Andres Ballas.  An on-site social booth will allow fans to take photos and create their own GIFs to be shared on social platforms.  In addition, the US Open has expanded its social influencer program, leveraging partners such as creative duo Street Etiquette, Fashion Bomb Daily and the entertainment marketing collective Everyday People helmed by Roble Ali and Saada Ahmed.  The program will culminate with an on-site activation, The Suite Spot, which will serve as a social media content hub to highlight key aspects of the US Open experience through the lens of participating influencers. 

US Open Television

  • ESPN to Produce Record Number of Hours for 2016 US Open

Following a successful first year, ESPN returns as the exclusive live domestic media partner this year.  During the 2016 US Open, ESPN and ESPN2 will combine to air nearly 130 hours of live match play with a record 1,300 hours of first-to-last ball coverage, available on WatchESPN,  ESPN continues to expand its production and coverage of the US Open, featuring play from up to 12 courts each day — on Arthur Ashe Stadium, Louis Armstrong Stadium, Grandstand Stadium, courts 4, 5, 6, 7, 10, 11, 12, 13 and 17 — and incorporating cutting-edge camera technologies.

  • Comprehensive 24/7 Schedule

ESPN will kick-off its US Open coverage on Sunday, August 28 with a live “SportsCenter on the Road” from the US Open at 1:00pm ET on ESPN2, followed-by Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day presented by Hess at 2:00pm on ABC.  Daily coverage commences on Monday, August 29 at 11:00am on WatchESPN, 1:00pm on ESPN and 6:00pm on ESPN2 (all times Eastern).  ESPN2 will deliver wall-to-wall coverage of Labor Day weekend from 11:00am – 11:00pm each day.  Finals Weekend will culminate with the men’s singles final on Sunday (September 11) and the women’s singles final on Saturday (September 10). Both finals will air at 4:00pm on ESPN.  The men’s singles semifinals will be played on Friday (September 9) afternoon, with the women’s singles semifinals scheduled for primetime on the second Thursday (September 8) night.  In addition to the extensive live match coverage delivered across the ESPN family of networks — Tennis Channel will air daily preview and highlights shows as well as overnight encore programming — offering fans a 24/7 US Open experience

  • Live Streaming

Again this year, will offer live streaming in partnership with ESPN, with more than 1,300 hours of coverage across all broadcast courts available on WatchESPN and through the US Open app – providing a “digital grounds pass” for fans.  In addition to its expansive match coverage, WatchESPN also offers the US Open Chase Review Channel, multi-court/camera offering, as well as Spanish language coverage.  New this year, the press conference feed from interview room 1 will also be available on WatchESPN.




Top American Collegians to Once Again Compete for Wild Card Entries

into 2017 US Open

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., August 18, 2016 –The USTA today announced that two-time NCAA champion Danielle Collins and 2015 NCAA champion Ryan Shane, both of the University of Virginia, lead the group of top American collegiate players selected to play in the third annual American Collegiate Invitational at the 2016 US Open, September 8-10 at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing, N.Y.

The American Collegiate Invitational, open only to American college players, began in 2014 as a way to spotlight college tennis during the US Open. Eight men and eight women play single-elimination singles tournaments Thursday to Saturday during the second week of the US Open, with the winners receiving a wild card into the 2017 US Open, main draw or qualifying, depending on their ranking next summer.

Men’s Field:

Christopher Eubanks (Soph., Georgia Tech; Atlanta)

Tom Fawcett (Soph., Stanford; Winnetka, Ill.)

*Jared Hiltzik (Sr., Illinois; Wilmette, Ill.)

Thai-Son Kwiatkowski (Jr., Virginia; Charlotte)

Mike Redlicki (Jr., Arkansas; Chicago)

*Ryan Shane (Sr., Virginia; Falls Church, Va.)

*Austin Smith (Sr., Georgia; Cumming, Ga.)

**Paul Oosterbaan (Soph., Georgia; Kalamazoo, Mich.)

Women’s Field:

*Breaunna Addison (Sr., Texas; Boca Raton, Fla.)

Brooke Austin (Soph., Florida; Indianapolis)

Hayley Carter (Jr., UNC; Hilton Head Island, S.C.)

*Danielle Collins (Sr., Virginia; St. Petersburg, Fla.)

Francesca Di Lorenzo (Fr., Ohio State; New Albany, Ohio)

Maegan Manasse (Jr., Cal; Redondo Beach, Calif.)

*RonitYurovsky (Sr., Michigan; New Kensington, Pa.)

**Kennedy Shaffer (Soph., Georgia; Rossford, Ohio)

*Indicates player is a graduating senior and/or has turned pro/exhausted collegiate eligibility;

** USTA Wild Card Selection

The fields are comprised of the top two players in the ATP/WTA rankings (as of July 18) and the top five players in the year-end Intercollegiate Tennis Association singles rankings (excluding those selected by pro ranking), including at least two graduating seniors or players who have turned pro/exhausted their collegiate eligibility.

The American Collegiate Invitational men’s champion will receive a main draw wild-card entry into the 2017 US Open if he is ranked No. 250 or better by the US Open entry deadline next summer; the women’s champion will receive a 2017 US Open main draw wild card if she is ranked No. 150 or better. Otherwise, the winners will receive wild-card entries into the US Open Qualifying Tournament. The champions will also get wild cards into two USTA Pro Circuit events, while each runner-up will receive one.


USTA Girls’ 16s & 18s National Championships Results


Kayla Day

San Diego, Calif. – (August 14, 2016) – Top-seeded Kayla Day of Santa Barbara, Calif., capped an impressive run to the Girls’ 18s singles title at the USTA National Championships by winning a tough three-set final 6-2, 3-6, 6-1 over seventh-seeded Nicole Frenkel of Winchester, Mass.

In addition to being presented a USTA gold ball for winning the national championship, Day was awarded a wild card into the women’s singles main draw of the US Open, which will take place August 29 through September 11 at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York.

Playing on Stadium Court at the Barnes Tennis Center, Day scored two early service breaks to take a 4-0 lead and would go on to win the first set 6-2 in 41 minutes. In the second set, Day broke Frenkel in the third game and then held serve for a 3-1 lead and appeared to be headed for a straight-set victory.

However, Frenkel cut down on her errors and found her groove and went on to win the next five games in a row to secure the second set 6-3 and send the match to a third and deciding set.

After both players held serve to begin the third set, Day took control of the deciding set, losing only seven points as she won the last five games in a row to secure the match and the championship.

“It feels amazing. I can’t even describe how good it feels. I’m just so happy. My serve really helped me out in the third set and I just played solid,” Day said.

“There were two turning points in the match. The first one was at 3-1 in the second set. She started playing better and my level (dropped) a little bit,” said Day, who will turn 17 in September. “The second turning point was when I broke her to go up 3-1 in the third.”

Carson Branstine of Orange, Calif., got past Amanda Anisimova of Aventura, Fla., 7-5, 5-7, 6-1 in the Girls’ 18s third-place playoff. Branstine was awarded a USTA bronze ball for her victory.

In the Girls’ 18s Doubles Championship, fifth-seeded Jada Hart of Colton, Calif., and Ena Shibahara of Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif., defeated ninth-seeded Meible Chi of Weston, Fla., and Taylor Russo of Deerfield Beach, Fla., 6-1, 6-4 to win the title. Hart and Shibahara were awarded USTA gold balls after the match. They also received a US Open wild card into the women’s doubles main draw.

Complete scores and results for each division of the USTA Girls’ 16s & 18s Nationals Championships can be viewed at:

In addition to the US Open wild cards that are traditionally awarded to the 16s and 18s singles champions and 18s doubles champions, additional wild cards for the US Open Junior Championships and wild cards to various USTA Women’s Pro Circuit tournaments will also be awarded this year.  For the complete list of wild cards to be awarded go to:

About USTA Girls’ 16s – 18s Nationals:
The USTA Girls’ 16 & 18s National Championships are the premiere hard court tennis tournaments for amateur and professional American girls aged 18 and 16 and under in the United States. In 2010, both age groups began playing their events concurrently at San Diego’s Barnes Tennis Center. Tournament participants, who represent nearly every state in the United States, have been endorsed by their respective USTA Section or have received USTA special exemptions based on their results in qualifying tournaments, junior rankings, or results on the WTA Tour or International Tennis Federation Junior Circuit.  Past tournament champions include Chris Evert, Tracy Austin, Andrea Jaeger, Zina Garrison, Mary Jo Fernandez, Jennifer Capriati and Lindsay Davenport.

About George E. Barnes Family Junior Tennis Center:
The Center is owned and operated by Youth Tennis San Diego. It was built in 1995 and completed in 1997. The $4.5 million junior tennis facility was made possible with generous public and private donations and is named after the lead donor family – the “George E. Barnes Family Junior Tennis Center.” The Center, which is dedicated to the youth of San Diego, offers children 18 and under court priority over adults with advanced reservations.

About Youth Tennis San Diego:
Youth Tennis San Diego is a non-profit 501 (c)(3) organization that has been in existence since 1952.  Earlier this year, Youth Tennis San Diego was recognized with the USTA Organization Member of the Year Award. The  award  is  given  annually  to  an  organization  that  provides  outstanding  service  to its members  and  to the  local  community. YTSD was honored at the USTA Annual Meeting and Conference, March 11-14, at the Omni La Costa Resort & Spa in Carlsbad, Calif.

The YTSD Mission is:  “To promote the educational, physical, and social development of all youth through organized tennis and educational activities.” Their community programs encourage youth participation, personal integrity, leadership, and competitive spirit in a friendly environment that builds responsible citizens.  YTSD provides thousands of youngsters each year the opportunity to play tennis after school at their neighborhood school. The After School Tennis program provides a safe haven for hundreds of youngsters who are not supervised after school. Through tennis, the children learn the success skills which will give them the confidence and self-esteem needed to confront the negative influences so often found on the streets where they live.

USTA Girls’ 16s & 18s Nationals
Barnes Tennis Center
San Diego, Calif.
Sunday’s Results

Girls’ 18s Singles
Kayla Day (1), Santa Barbara, Calif., def. Nicole Frenkel (7), Winchester, Mass., 6-2, 3-6, 6-1

Third Place
Carson Branstine (17), Orange, Calif., def. Amanda Anisimova (5), Aventura, Fla., 7-5, 5-7, 6-1

Girls’ 18s Doubles
Jada Hart (5), Colton, Calif., and Ena Shibahara, Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif., def. Meible Chi (9), Weston, Fla., and Taylor Russo, Deerfield Beach, Fla., 6-1, 6-4

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Del Potro Ousts Top Seed Djokovic in First Round of the Olympic Games

Del Potro high fh

(August 7, 2016) In a rematch of the 2012 Olympic bronze medal match, unseeded Juan Martin Del Potro surprised No. 1 Novak Djokovic 7-6(4), 7-6(2) in the first round of the Rio Olympics on Sunday.

Del Potro has been sidelined by wrist surgeries on and off, over the past few years is ranked 145th in the world. The big forehand which saw him win the 2009 U.S. Open returned to its former glory in beating Djokovic who was trying to complete a career “golden slam” by winning a gold medal at the Olympics. The Argentina crushed 41 total winners, 29 coming on his forehand side. His Serbian opponent, the 12-time major champion his more errors than winners 32 to 26.

Del Potro’s day started out with him being stuck in an elevator in the Olympic Village before Argentine handball players got him out.

It was a 50-50 day for defending women’s Olympic champion Serena Williams. The 34-year-old world No. 1 and holder of 22 majors titles won her opening singles match under gusty winds 6-4, 6-2 victory over Australia’s Daria Gavrilova.

Later in the day, Serena teamed up with sister Venus for their first round of doubles in Rio. The three-time doubles gold medalists and top seeds lost an Olympic doubles match for the first time ever, falling to the Czech Republic’s Lucie Safarova and Barbora Strycova 6-3, 6-4.

Serena said that she and her sister “played terrible.”

Safarova was originally supposed to be playing with Karolina Pliskova, who withdrew.

Another pair of siblings also fell in their first round of Olympic doubles, as Andy and Jamie Murray lost to Brazil’s Thomaz Bellucci and Andre Sa 7-6 (6), 7-6 (14). Andy Murray won his first round singles match over Viktor Troicki 6-3, 6-2.

Rafael Nadal returned to the court for the first time since the French Open with a 6-2, 6-1 win over Argentina’s Federico Delbonis. Nadal, Spain’s flagbearer in the opening ceremony of the games, is coming off a left wrist injury. Nadal won the gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, but missed the 2012 London Olympics.


Seeds Announced for the Rio 2016 Olympic Tennis Event


(August 3, 2016) The ITF has announced the seeds for the Rio 2016 Olympic Tennis Event being held at the Olympic Tennis Centre in Barra Olympic Park on 6-14 August.


The draw for the event will take place at the Olympic Tennis Centre on Thursday 4 August at 11:00 local time (14:00 GMT). Sixty-four players are contesting the men’s and women’s singles, and 32 teams are contesting the men’s and women’s doubles.


Entries for the 16-team mixed doubles event will be determined on site from those players already participating in singles or doubles, with a maximum of two teams per country. Teams have to be nominated by their National Olympic Committee by the deadline of 9 August, with the draw taking place the same day.



Men’s Singles

  1. Novak Djokovic (SRB)
  2. Andy Murray (GBR)
  3. Rafael Nadal (ESP)
  4. Kei Nishikori (JPN)
  5. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (FRA)
  6. Gael Monfils (FRA)
  7. David Ferrer (ESP)
  8. David Goffin (BEL)
  9. Marin Cilic (CRO)
  10. Roberto Bautista Agut (ESP)
  11. Pablo Cuevas (URU)
  12. Steve Johnson (USA)
  13. Philipp Kohlschreiber (GER)
  14. Jack Sock (USA)
  15. Gilles Simon (FRA)
  16. Benoit Paire (FRA)


Women’s Singles

  1. Serena Williams (USA)
  2. Angelique Kerber (GER)
  3. Garbine Muguruza (ESP)
  4. Agnieszka Radwanska (POL)
  5. Venus Williams (USA)
  6. Roberta Vinci (ITA)
  7. Madison Keys  (USA)
  8. Svetlana Kuznetsova (RUS)
  9. Carla Suarez Navarro (ESP)
  10. Johanna Konta (GBR)
  11. Petra Kvitova (CZE)
  12. Timea Bacsinszky (SUI)
  13. Samantha Stosur (AUS)
  14. Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (RUS)
  15. Elina Svitolina (UKR)
  16. Barbora Strycova (CZE)

Men’s Doubles

  1. Pierre-Hugues Herbert/Nicolas Mahut (FRA)
  2. Andy Murray/Jamie Murray (GBR)
  3. Marcelo Melo/Bruno Soares (BRA)
  4. Gael Monfils/Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (FRA)
  5. Florin Mergea/Horia Tecau (ROU)
  6. Marc Lopez/Rafael Nadal (ESP)
  7. Daniel Nestor/Vasek Pospisil (CAN)
  8. Roberto Bautista Agut/David Ferrer (ESP)


Women’s Doubles

  1. Serena Williams/Venus Williams (USA)
  2. Caroline Garcia/Kristina Mladenovic (FRA)
  3. Chan Hao-Ching/Chan Yung-Jan (TPE)
  4. Garbine Muguruza/Carla Suarez Navarro (ESP)
  5. Timea Bacsinszky/Martina Hingis (SUI)
  6. Andrea Hlavackova/Lucie Hradecka (CZE)
  7. Ekaterina Makarova/Elena Vesnina (RUS)
  8. Sara Errani/Roberta Vinci (ITA)

Novak Djokovic Beats Kei Nishikori for Toronto Title and 30th Masters Series Trophy

26-Djokovic Kisses trophy


(July 31, 2016) Novak Djokovic won his fourth Rogers Cup title on Sunday in Toronto beating Japan’s Kei Nishikori 6-3, 7-5. For the Serb, the world’s top player it’s his 30th Masters Series title on the ATP World Tour, adding to his Masters title record. In the event which rotates between Toronto and Montreal, Djokovic also won titles in 2007, 2011 and 2012.

Djokovic, who has nine straight wins against Nishikori, is now 33-1 on hard courts for the year.

“I think he stepped it up,” said Nishikori. “He raise his level I think a lot from these couple days, couple days ago.

“He played really deep, and he didn’t give me any, like, free points. Especially he was serving really well, so I didn’t have many, you know, chance for my return game. So I was really feeling the pressure every game.

“Maybe second set maybe I had some chance, but there was too many unforced errors from me. Well, also he was playing good, but I couldn’t play good tennis today.”


“I think, like I said, I had too many unforced errors especially during important points. Yeah, he was returning really well today, I think. I was hitting some good first serves, but he was making return in deep.

“I hope I can step it up a little more and winning some titles, but I think still Novak is biggest challenge for me to win against him. Especially on hard court he’s been beating me. You know, not easy but two sets. Miami, here, especially big match like here in final.

“So I think I need more experience, you know, of these kind of matches, but I think this is a great week even though I lost Novak. It was second time this year in the final, Masters. I think getting closer and closer. So hope I can get a Masters title as soon as possible.

“I think that’s going to give me a lot of confidence for winning the Grand Slams and those big tournaments.

This is Djokovic’s seventh title of the year which includes victories at two majors – the Australian Open and the French Open with Masters titles at Indian Wells, Miami, Madrid and Toronto, as well as a tournament in Doha.

Djokovic, whose next stop is Rio de Janiero for the Olympic Games was asked about his participation and if he has concerns about playing there.

“No, no. Really, again, I think it’s all in our minds,” he said about people having reservations about playing in Rio. “Depends how you really approach things. I really don’t think about negative stuff and stuff that might cause a fear or concern or something like that, like viruses or security issues.

“Surely they are there. We have to be, in a way, cautious. But I try to look at things from the brighter side. I’m part of the Olympic Games. You know, it’s a very exciting city and country that is very passionate for sports. You know, millions of people will be there. You know, so many other millions will watch it on the TV. That’s the kind of vibe that I feed on, and I look forward to the Olympic Games because I approach it in that way. So I can’t wait to be there.”

Asked about the importance of winning a gold medal to his legacy he commented:

“Well, there is going to be a lot going on with the Olympic Games, and as you mentioned, different sports and different events.

“Well, it’s the biggest sports event in the history of the sport, so to be part of it is already a huge privilege and honor that I will cherish, as I did in Beijing and London Olympic Games.

“I had an honor of carrying the flag for my country in London back in 2012, and that was one of the most unique and unforgettable moments of my life. So I look forward to that, honestly, just being part of it.

“Approaching the Olympic Games as any other tournament, really. Trying to respect the same kind of preparation and routine that I have with my team and that I have respected for so many years, and that has worked well for us this week and as most of the other weeks the last couple of years.

“So of course the overall sensation is not going to be the same as the other tournaments, because it’s Olympic Games. You know, of course you represent your country. You know, you get to feel that you’re part of something much larger than just the tennis event. I look forward to that. I’m going to try to extract that positivity out of that huge attention and energy that will be directed into the Olympic Games and hopefully put myself in a position to battle for a medal.”

“After Grand Slams, these are the biggest events we have in sport of tennis,” Djokovic continued. “Naturally I’m going to be very disciplined, committed, and focused to do well.

“But, you know, obviously Grand Slams you value those, you know, the most because in the history books they count the most. But in the other hand, you know, I love playing in Masters tournaments throughout my career. I have had plenty of success in this particular category of events, and I’m very grateful for that because I always value them as much as I value Grand Slams.

“So, you know, I try to approach every single day, whether it’s a match day or practice day, with the right mindset and knowing that this will eventually pay off down the road.”

Djokovic captured the bronze medal at the 2008 Olympic games.


All photos by Nida Alibhai.


Related articles with photo galleries:

Rogers Cup Results, Schedules and Photo Gallery

Toronto Results, Schedule and Photo Gallery

Toronto Results, Schedule and Photo Gallery

Toronto Results, Schedule and Photo Gallery

Wildcard Denis Shapovalov Knocks Out 11th Seed Nick Kyrgios in First Round of Toronto Masters


Rogers Cup Results, Schedules and Photo Gallery

(July 30, 2016) TORONTO – All photos by Nida Alibhai from Saturday.



Singles – Semifinals
[1] N. Djokovic (SRB) d [10] G. Monfils (FRA) 63 62
[3] K. Nishikori (JPN) d [2] S. Wawrinka (SUI) 76(6) 61

Doubles – Semifinals
[2] J. Murray (GBR) / B. Soares (BRA) d [6] D. Nestor (CAN) / V. Pospisil (CAN) 64 67(5) 10-7
[3] I. Dodig (CRO) / M. Melo (BRA) d [5] F. Mergea (ROU) / H. Tecau (ROU) 64 63


Singles – Semifinals 
[5] S. Halep (ROU) d [2] A. Kerber (GER) 60 36 62
[10] M. Keys (USA) d [Q] K. Kucova (SVK) 62 61

Doubles – Semifinals
[4] E. Makarova (RUS) / E. Vesnina (RUS) d C. Mchale (USA) / A. Muhammad (USA) 64 62
[WC] S. Halep (ROU) / M. Niculescu (ROU) d A. Klepac (SLO) / K. Srebotnik (SLO) 63 26 10-6


CENTRE COURT start 1:20 pm 

[3] I. Dodig (CRO) / M. Melo (BRA) vs [2] J. Murray (GBR) / B. Soares (BRA)

Not Before 4:00 pm 
[1] N. Djokovic (SRB)  vs [3] K. Nishikori (JPN)


CENTRAL start 1:00 pm
[10] M. Keys (USA) vs [5] S. Halep (ROU)
After Suitable Rest – [4] E. Makarova (RUS) / E. Vesnina (RUS) vs [WC] S. Halep (ROU) / M. Niculescu (ROU)


Next Stop Atlanta for the US Open Series


By Herman Wood

(July 30, 2016) ATLANTA, Georgia – The BB&T Atlanta Open began with qualifying on Saturday. The BB&T is a ATP World 250 tour event held in downtown Atlanta at Atlantic Station with a 28 player main singles draw and a 16 team draw. It is the the third event in the nine tournament series leading to the U.S. Open. This year marks the thirteenth year of the series. The Atlanta stop will also be the last ATP tour event prior to the Olympic games. On a side note, 2016 is the anniversary of the Atlanta Olympic games in which Andre Agassi won gold. The tournament is helping the city celebrate with an Olympic exhibit in Atlantic Station with a variety of athletes from those games stopping in. Andre Agassi was to play an exhibition against his opponent from those Olympics, Sergi Bruguera, but had to withdraw from future tennis events for the foreseeable future due to recurring back problems. John McEnroe will replace him for the exhibition Sunday evening. John Isner returns as a three-time champion, but faces a strong field headlined by eighteenth ranked Nick Kyrgios in his quest to capture a fourth consecutive title.

Nikc Kygrgios

Nikc Kyrgios

Kyrgios caused a bit of stir as he checked into the tournament hotel on Saturday, chatting with local players and posing for selfies upon request. It will be interesting to see how the crowd reacts to him as could face American Jared Donaldson or fellow Australian Sam Groth, always a fan favorite in Atlanta in his opening match. He will not see former Georgia Bulldog and top ranked American John Isner unless both men make the final. Another Bulldog, Austin Smith, received the annual “college wildcard”, though will face 63rd ranked Taylor Fritz, an eighteen year old American in the opening round of the main draw.

The qualifying tournament has seven American men vying for two slots in the main draw. Their numbers were cut to three at the end of Saturday’s action. Nicholas Meister, Austin Krajicek, and Christopher Eubanks were the only to survive. Eubanks took the hard way in, winning a local “Atlanta Challenge” tournament to earn his place in qualifying. Clearly, it was well earned, with Eubanks playing very well in today’s action.


Eubanks played fellow American . Paul was the 2015 Roland Garros junior champion and was the lone American to make it through qualifying at the 2015 U.S. Open. Eubanks’ experience as a college player at Georgia Tech seemed to help him with the momentum swings that were part of the match. He put pressure on Paul’s serve early and often, forcing long service games. Paul didn’t help his cause, at one point on getting in only 41% of his first serves. Eubanks got the early break in the first set and ran away with the set at 6-2. Paul made some adjustments early in the second set, moving back for Eubanks’ second serve to better get the ball in his strike zone. Eubanks obliged by letting his own first service percentage drop a little, giving Paul the opportunities he needed.

Eubanks “just kind of stuck with it until I got that break back from down 4-1 to give me a little more juice. Then I got a quick hold to consolidate the break, something we always talk about.” “At that point I just said I’ve been breaking him all day, let’s get another one.” Once that match got even, it was mostly a matter of quick holds until Eubanks held to go up 6-5. Paul put up some resistance, bringing his service game to deuce before finally sending one long giving Eubanks the 6-2, 7-5 win. He will take on 104th ranked Thiago Moneiro of Brazil in the next round of qualifying on Sunday at 11 AM.

Nine Americans are already part of the main draw. Play will continue all week, wrapping up with Sunday singles and doubles finals.


Toronto Results, Schedule and Photo Gallery


Raonic and Monfils


(July 29, 2016) TORONTO – All photos by Nida Alibhai from Friday.






Rogers Cup
Toronto, Canada


Singles – Quarter-finals
[1] N. Djokovic (SRB) d [5] T. Berdych (CZE) 76(6) 64
[2] S. Wawrinka (SUI) d K. Anderson (RSA) 61 63
[3] K. Nishikori (JPN) d G. Dimitrov (BUL) 63 36 62
[10] G. Monfils (FRA) d [4] M. Raonic (CAN) 64 64

Doubles – Quarter-finals
[5] F. Mergea (ROU) / H. Tecau (ROU) d [1] B. Bryan (USA) / M. Bryan (USA) 63 63
[2] J. Murray (GBR) / B. Soares (BRA) d [7] R. Klaasen (RSA) / R. Ram (USA) 36 75 10-4
[3] I. Dodig (CRO) / M. Melo (BRA) d [8] H. Kontinen (FIN) / J. Peers (AUS) 36 64 10-8
[6] D. Nestor (CAN) / V. Pospisil (CAN) d T. Berdych (CZE) / R. Stepanek (CZE) 63 76(6)


CENTRE COURT start 12:20 pm
[5] F. Mergea (ROU) / H. Tecau (ROU) vs [3] I. Dodig (CRO) / M. Melo (BRA)

Not Before 3:00 pm
[3] K. Nishikori (JPN) vs [2] S. Wawrinka (SUI)

Not Before 5:50 pm
[6] D. Nestor (CAN) / V. Pospisil (CAN) vs [2] J. Murray (GBR) / B. Soares (BRA)

Not Before 8:00 pm
[1] N. Djokovic (SRB) vs [10] G. Monfils (FRA)


Toronto Results, Schedule and Photo Gallery

(July 28, 2016) TORONTO – All photos by Nida Alibhai from Wednesday.






Rogers Cup
Toronto, Canada


Singles – Second Round
[1] N. Djokovic (SRB) d [Q] R. Stepanek (CZE) 62 64
[2] S. Wawrinka (SUI) d [16] J. Sock (USA) 76(3) 62
[3] K. Nishikori (JPN) d R. Ram (USA) 63 64
[4] M. Raonic (CAN) d [Q] J. Donaldson (USA) 62 63
[5] T. Berdych (CZE) d [Q] R. Harrison (USA) 64 67(2) 64
[10] G. Monfils (FRA) d [7] D. Goffin (BEL) 76(5) 26 64
K. Anderson (RSA) d [12] B. Tomic (AUS) 46 63 64
G. Dimitrov (BUL) d I. Karlovic (CRO) 63 75

Doubles – Second Round
[1] B. Bryan (USA) / M. Bryan (USA) d M. Matkowski (POL) / M. Mirnyi (BLR) 64 64
[2] J. Murray (GBR) / B. Soares (BRA) d B. Tomic (AUS) / V. Troicki (SRB) 63 62
[6] D. Nestor (CAN) / V. Pospisil (CAN) d N. Kyrgios (AUS) / J. Sock (USA) 76(4) 01 Ret. (Sock arm)
[7] R. Klaasen (RSA) / R. Ram (USA) d [WC] P. Bester (CAN) / A. Shamasdin (CAN) 64 76(4)
[8] H. Kontinen (FIN) / J. Peers (AUS) d G. Dimitrov (BUL) / S. Wawrinka (SUI) 76(4) 62


CENTRE COURT start 12:30 pm
K. Anderson (RSA) vs [2] S. Wawrinka (SUI)
G. Dimitrov (BUL) vs [3] K. Nishikori (JPN)

Not Before 6:30 pm
[1] N. Djokovic (SRB) vs [5] T. Berdych (CZE)
[4] M. Raonic (CAN) vs [10] G. Monfils (FRA)

GRANDSTAND start 11:00 am
[1] B. Bryan (USA) / M. Bryan (USA) vs [5] F. Mergea (ROU) / H. Tecau (ROU)
[7] R. Klaasen (RSA) / R. Ram (USA) vs [2] J. Murray (GBR) / B. Soares (BRA)
[3] I. Dodig (CRO) / M. Melo (BRA) vs [8] H. Kontinen (FIN) / J. Peers (AUS)

Not Before 7:30 pm
After Suitable Rest – [6] D. Nestor (CAN) / V. Pospisil (CAN) vs T. Berdych (CZE) / R. Stepanek (CZE)