2015/04/21

Taylor Townsend to Compete in French Open Junior Championships

Taylor Townsend

Taylor Townsend

From the USTA – WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., May 13, 2013 – Taylor Townsend, the No. 1-ranked junior in the world at the end of 2012, will play in her first junior event of 2013 at the Roland Garros French Open Junior Championships June 2-8 in Paris.

 

Townsend finished last year as the No. 1-ranked junior in the world, becoming the first American girl in 30 years to hold that distinction. She remains No. 10 in the ITF world junior rankings despite thus far having played only professional tournaments in 2013. In her first WTA-level main draw match, Townsend beat then-No. 57 Lucie Hradecka in the first round of the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, Calif., in March.

 

Townsend, who in 2012 won the Australian Open junior singles title and junior doubles titles at the Australian Open, Wimbledon and US Open, headlines an American girls’ contingent accepted to play in the French Open Junior Championship that includes Victoria Duval (17, Delray Beach, Fla.), currently No. 285 in the WTA rankings. In 2012, Duval won the USTA Girls’ 18s national title to earn a wild card into the US Open main draw, where she played Kim Clijsters in the first round.

 

Christina Makarova (16, San Diego), currently No. 11 in the ITF world junior rankings, No. 29 Sachia Vickery (18, Hollywood, Fla.) and No. 39 Jamie Loeb (18, Ossining, N.Y.) are also in the girls’ main draw, while No. 56 Louisa Chirico (16, Harrison, N.Y.), was accepted for qualifying.

 

Townsend, Duval and Vickery each train at the USTA Training Center – Headquarters in Boca Raton, Fla., while Chirico trains at the USTA Training Center – East in Flushing, N.Y.

 

Thai-Son Kwiatkowski (18, Charlotte, N.C.), currently the top-ranked American junior boy at No. 16 in the world, leads the Americans accepted to play the boys’ main draw, followed by No. 19 Stefan Kozlov (15, Pembroke Pines, Fla.), No. 23 Noah Rubin (17, Rockville Centre, N.Y.), No. 38 Luca Corinteli (17, Alexandria, Va.) and No. 40 Spencer Papa (17, Edmond, Okla.). No. 49 Martin Redlicki (17, Hawthorn Woods, Ill.) was accepted for qualifying.

 

Kozlov is the youngest player in the Top 20 of the world junior rankings and is the second youngest player in the French Open boys’ main draw. Rubin, who has been ranked as high as No. 6 in the world junior rankings, reached the quarterfinals of last year’s French Open Junior Championship, while Papa advanced to the third round last year.

 

Currently, Kozlov and Papa train at the USTA Training Center – Headquarters in Boca Raton, Fla. Kwiatkowski and Redlicki previously trained there, Kwiatkowski for three years, and Corinteli trains at the Junior tennis Champions Center in College Park, Md., a USTA Certified Regional Training Center.

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Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams Named 2012 ITF World Champions

(December 11, 2012) The ITF announced that Novak Djokovic of Serbia and American Serena Williams are the 2012 ITF World Champions. This is the second successive year Djokovic has received this honor, while Williams is named Women’s World Champion for the third time.

 

Americans Bob and Mike Bryan are named Men’s Doubles World Champions for the ninth time in 10 years, while Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci of Italy become Women’s Doubles World Champions for the first time.

 

Canada’s Filip Peliwo and Taylor Townsend of USA are named ITF Junior World Champions, while the ITF Wheelchair World Champions are Esther Vergeer of Netherlands and France’s Stephane Houdet. Vergeer becomes world champion for an astonishing 13th successive year.

 

The ITF World Champions will receive their awards at the ITF World Champions Dinner on Tuesday 4 June, in Paris, during Roland Garros.

 

Novak Djokovic finished on top of the rankings and as ITF World Champion for the second straight year. The 25-year-old successfully defended his Australian Open title and went on to reach the finals at Roland Garros and the US Open. Despite losing the No. 1 ranking to Roger Federer in July, he regained the top position in November and went on to win the ATP World Tour Finals. He won a total of six titles in 2012.

 

Djokovic said: “I am proud to have been named ITF World Champion for the second successive year. It was very difficult to follow up such a successful season in 2011, but it was extremely satisfying to win another Grand Slam title, reach two other major finals and finish the year at No. 1.”

 

Serena Williams’s superior record in the year’s major events sees her crowned Women’s World Champion ahead of Victoria Azarenka and Maria Sharapova. The 31-year-old captured Olympic singles gold for the first time, and won Wimbledon and the US Open to take her total number of Grand Slam titles to 15. She went on to capture the year-end WTA Championships to finish the season with a tour-best seven titles and a 58-4 win-loss record.

 

Williams said: “It means a lot to be named ITF World Champion for the third time. It has been such an amazing experience this year to win the Olympics and two Grand Slam tournaments, and I look forward to having an awesome 2013.”

 

ITF President Francesco Ricci Bitti said: “This has been another memorable year for our sport, highlighted by the most successful Olympic Tennis Event in history. In such a strong era for men’s tennis, it is a great achievement for Novak to retain his year-end No. 1 ranking, while on the women’s side Serena proved herself to be one of the finest competitors of all time.”

 

Bob and Mike Bryan are named Men’s Doubles World Champions after a year in which they captured their first Olympic gold medal at Wimbledon, having won bronze in Beijing. The brothers equalled the all-time record for Grand Slam doubles titles by capturing their 12th title at the US Open, and were also runners-up at the Australian Open and Roland Garros. They won five more events in 2012 to stand at 82 career titles.

 

Bob Bryan said: “Mike and I are very grateful for receiving this honor, and we’d like to thank the ITF for this prestigious award. This is one of our achievements that we are most proud of, and we look forward to celebrating it next year in Paris.”

 

Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci are the first all-Italian pairing to be named Women’s Doubles World Champions. The duo captured their first two Grand Slam titles at Roland Garros and the US Open, and were also runners-up at the Australian Open. They won a tour-high eight titles during the year, including five successive tournament wins between April and June. They ended the year as the No. 1-ranked team.

 

Errani said: “We have had an amazing year and are proud to be named ITF World Champions. There have been so many highlights in singles and doubles, but we are very happy to be the first Italian pair to finish the season at No. 1. We’re already looking forward to next season.”

 

The ITF’s selection of its senior World Champions is based on an objective system that considers all results during the year, but gives weight to the Grand Slam tournaments, Olympic Tennis Event and two ITF international team competitions, Davis Cup by BNP Paribas and Fed Cup by BNP Paribas.

 

Filip Peliwo is only the second Canadian after Daniel Nestor to be named ITF World Champion in any category after securing the year-end No. 1 junior boys ranking. The 18-year-old became the first player since Mark Kratzmann in 1984 to reach all four junior Slam finals in a calendar year. He lost his first two finals at the Australian Open and Roland Garros, before winning Wimbledon and the US Open.

 

Peliwo said: “This is such a great achievement and a huge honour to be recognised by the ITF for this award. I exceeded even my own expectations this past year and to have the year-end No. 1 ranking is something really special that I am proud of.”

 

Taylor Townsend is the first American girl since Gretchen Rush in 1982 to be named Junior World Champion. The 16-year-old captured her first major singles title at the Australian Open, and narrowly failed to achieve the Grand Slam in doubles, winning three titles at the Australian Open, Wimbledon and the US Open. She also led her country to victory in the finals of the Junior Fed Cup by BNP Paribas.

 

Townsend said: “It’s a great honor. I mean, there’s so much that goes into the title World Champion, and I’m honored and blessed that they would even crown me that.”

 

Stephane Houdet enjoyed a breakthrough year to be named Wheelchair World Champion for the first time at the age of 42. The Frenchman won his first Grand Slam singles title on home soil at Roland Garros to take over the No. 1 ranking, and stayed at the top for the rest of the year. He was also a singles silver medallist at the Paralympic Tennis Event and led France to victory in the BNP Paribas World Team Cup.

 

Houdet said: “This has been my best year with my first Grand Slam victory in my country in front of my friends and family, two Paralympic medals, and winning the World Team Cup. These are dreams come true, but also give me new dreams to continue along the same path.”

 

Esther Vergeer extended her winning streak to 470 matches en route to the year-end No. 1 wheelchair tennis ranking for the 13th consecutive year. The 31-year-old became tennis’s most successful Paralympian, winning her fourth successive singles gold in London. She won a total of 10 singles titles during the year, including the Grand Slam events at the Australian Open and Roland Garros.

 

Vergeer said: “Again I am very proud to be the year-end No. 1. My main goal for this year was winning a gold medal in London, but being No. 1 at the end of this year is something that I have worked for all-year long. So it is a crown for all the hard work I put in.”

 

ITF President Francesco Ricci Bitti said: “I would like to pay tribute to all the 2012 ITF World Champions, who have contributed to a successful year for the sport at all levels.”

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Taylor Townsend Clinches Year-End No. 1 Junior Ranking at Orange Bowl

PLANTATION, Fla., Dec. 7, 2012 – One top seed stumbled at the Orange Bowl International Tennis Championships on Friday. Another found its footing on top of the world.

 

While 10th-seeded Laslo Djere of Serbia took down No. 1 Gianluigi Quinzi of Italy, 6-7(2), 6-2, 6-1, in the Orange Bowl Boys 18s draw quarterfinals at the Frank Veltri Tennis Center, Taylor Townsend (Stockbridge, Ga.), the top seed in the Girls 18s draw, grinded out a 7-5, 5-7, 7-6(2) victory over No. 5 Carol Zhao of Canada.

 

With Townsend’s singles victory, and the doubles win of Great Britain’s Katy Dunne and Christina Makarova (San Diego) over Austria’s Barbara Haas and the Czech Republic’s Katerina Siniakova, the 16-year old Townsend solidified her year-end ITF No. 1 junior ranking, becoming the first American girl to hold that position since Gretchen Rush in 1982.

 

Only Siniakova, the current world No. 3, could have caught Townsend in the year-end rankings, by winning the singles and doubles titles.

 

“When I step out onto the court, I really just play tennis,” said Townsend, who will turn pro beginning in 2013. “I mean, if I just play well and do what I know I can do, everything else will take care of itself.”

 

Meanwhile, Djere moves on to the boys 18s semifinals, where he’ll meet No. 9 seed Thai-Son Kwiatkowski (Charlotte, N.C.), who had little trouble with 6-foot-5 Deiton Baughman (Carson, Calif.) in Friday’s quarterfinals, seemingly breezing to a 6-2, 6-2 win.

 

“For sure, he’s got a great serve, and normally my game is to hit high and heavy and get the ball above the guy’s shoulders. But when the guy’s 6-5, his shoulders are a little bit higher than the rest of the people I’m playing,” Kwiatkowski said. “So, I had to figure out what to do, and I think before the match I had a good strategy with my coach, and I feel like that went pretty well.”

 

An American each advanced to Saturday’s Boys and Girls 16s finals. No. 12 seed Tommy Paul (Coconut Creek, Fla.) defeated Sameer Kumar (Carmel, Ind.), 6-0, 6-7, 6-2 in the semifinals, and Chloe Michele Ouellet-Pizer (Chapel Hill, N.C.) took down Germany’s Lisa Ponomar, 7-6(6), 7-5.

 

“I think this whole tournament I’ve competed really well. My second round, I was down, 5-4, and 30-all in the third set, so I was two points from losing. I just think I’ve played really clutch this tournament. I think on big points, before this, I’ve been rushing too much, so I’ve been trying to keep it longer on big points and not rush it,” Ouellet-Pizer said. “I can’t believe I’m in the finals. Either way, it’s a win-win, so I’m just going to play with no pressure and just see what happens.”

 

One of Paul’s coaches, meanwhile, is Timothy Neilly, the last American to win the Orange Bowl Boys 18s title, in 2004, who gave his student specific, if simple, advice.

 

“He just said, ‘Work the forehand cross-court,’” Paul said.

 

In doubles play, No. 7 Lamar Remy (Roslyn, N.Y.) and Alejandro Tabilo of Canada defeated Sumit Nagal of India and Dennis Uspensky (Atlantic Beach, N.Y.), 6-3, 6-3, for the Boys 16s title, while No. 2 Ponomar and Johnnise Renaud (North Miami, Fla.) defeated No. 6 Gloria Liang and Marie-Alexandre Leduc of Canada, 6-0, 6-1, for the Girls 16s title.

 

For updated draws and each day’s order of play, visit http://orangebowltennis.org.

Orange Bowl International Tennis Championships

 

Frank Veltri Tennis Center, Plantation, Fla.

 

Singles

 

Boys

 

18-and-under

 

Quarterfinals

 

(10) Laslo Djere, SRB d. (1) Gianluigi Quinzi, ITA, 6-7(2), 6-2, 6-1

(12) Elias Ymer, SWE d. (2) Frederico Ferreira Silva, POR, 6-1, 1-6, 6-1

(9) Thai-Son Kwiatkowski, USA d. Deiton Baughman, USA, 6-2, 6-2

(8) Filippo Baldi, ITA d. (3) Yoshihito Nishioka, JPN, 6-3, 4-6, 6-4

 

16-and-under

 

Semifinals

 

(4) Andrey Rublev, RUS d. (14) Dennis Uspensky, USA, 6-1, 4-6, 6-1

(12) Tommy Paul, USA d. Sameer Kumar, USA, 6-0, 6-7(5), 6-2

 

Girls

 

18-and-under

 

Quarterfinals

 

(1) Taylor Townsend, USA d. (5) Carol Zhao, CAN, 7-5, 5-7, 7-6(2)

(2) Katerina Siniakova, CZE d. Chalena Scholl, USA, 6-1, 2-6, 6-2

(7) Ana Konjuh, CRO d. (4) Belinda Bencic, SUI, 6-4, 6-2

(6) Marcela Zacarias, MEX d. Natalia Vajdova, SVK, 6-3, 6-4

 

16-and-under

 

Semifinals

 

(8) Gloria Liang, CAN d. (5) Usue Maitane Arconada, USA, 6-2, 6-3

(16) Chloe Michele Ouellet-Pizer, USA d. Lisa Ponomar, GER, 7-6(6), 7-5

 

Doubles

 

Boys

 

18-and-under

 

Quarterfinals

 

(1) Gianluigi Quinzi, Filippo Baldi, ITA d. (8) Anton Desyatnik/Aleksandr Ivanovich Spirin, RUS, 6-3, 2-6 (10-5)

Christian Garin, CHI/Nicolas Jarry, USA d. Skander Mansouri, TUN/Mazen Osama, EGY, 6-4, 6-4

Lukas Mugevicius, LTU/Alexander Vasilenko, RUS d. Deiton Baughman/Ronnie Schneider, USA, 3-6, 6-2 (10-6)

(2) Borna Coric, CRO/Elias Ymer, SWE d. Lucas Miedler, AUT d. Dominic Weidinger, AUT, 6-4, 6-3

 

16-and-under

 

Finals

 

(7) Lamar Remy, USA/Alejandro Tabilo, CAN d. (1) Sumit Nagal, IND/Dennis Uspensky, USA, 6-3, 6-3

 

Girls

 

18-and-under

 

Quarterfinals

 

Jennifer Brady/Jamie Loeb, USA d. Klaartje Liebens/Michelle Werbrouck, BEL, walkover

Katy Dunne, GBR/Christina Makarova, USA d. (4) Barbara Haas, AUT/Katerina Siniakova, CZE, 7-5, 1-6 (10-7)

Gabrielle Andrews/Taylor Townsend, USA d. Rebecca Peterson, SWE/Aldila Sutjiadi, INA, 6-2, 3-6 (11-9)

(8) Victoria Rodriguez/Marcela Zacarias, MEX d. Brooke Austin/Rasheeda McAdoo, USA, 6-4, 6-1

 

16-and-under

 

Finals

 

(2) Lisa Ponomar, GER/Johnnise Renaud, USA d. (6) Marie-Alexandre Leduc/Gloria Liang, CAN, 6-0, 6-1

 

Townsend photo courtesy of the USTA

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Double Delight for Townsend: Wins Australian Open Girls’ Doubles Crown with Andrews and Advances to Girls’ Singles Final

MELBOURNE PARK, Australia – A pair of 15-year-olds from the United States, Taylor Townsend of Stockbridge, Ga., and Gabrielle Andrews of Pomona, Calif., captured the Australian Open junior girls’ doubles title on Friday by defeating Irina Khromacheva of Russia and Danka Kovinic of Montenegro, 5-7, 7-5, 10-6.

Townsend and Andrews have known each other since they were 8-year-olds in tennis camp and have been friends  since. “They used to bring us out into the Home Depot Center and they have the eight high-performance camps and so they brought people from all over,” Townsend said.  “We just decided to play doubles. Easter Bowl was the first time when we were 14.”

Earlier in the day Townsend advanced to the junior girls’ final with a 7-6 (3), 6-4 win over Krista Hardebeck  of Santa Ana, Calif., in a 90-minute slugfest.

“She played really well, I came out playing really well,” Townsend said. “I went up, 2-0, and then she came back and got up, 3-2, and then from there it was really tight and no one could really break serve. A lot of return errors really killed me because she was holding serve and holding serves at love, because I was missing my second serve returns.

“I stayed in the points and I was just fighting at the end. She gave me some free shots, I hit some good shots, good severs, when I needed them. I made sure to keep coming into the net. I couldn’t stop doing that. And in the second set I think I did that more than in the first.”

Hardebeck, 17, defeated  Townsend last week in the Loy Yang Traralgon International quarterfinals, 6-4, 6-2, and went on to win the tournament.

“I was really excited about it,”  Hardebeck said of that win. “I actually played Taylor last week and I beat her there. It was a great match and a great week there. This week was pretty good as well, so I’m happy.”

Townsend said: “The biggest thing for me was that I competed today. Last week, I feel like I kind of less settled because it was a warm-up tournament quarterfinals like. It was very very tough conditions. It was windy outside.”

“But today I definitely came out really hard and that was the biggest thing keeping myself pumped.”

Townsend led off the match with a break of serve and Hardebeck returned the favor in the fourth game. Both held serve until the tiebreak, which Townsend won, 7-3, by playing aggressive tennis. She ended the tiebreak with an ace.

The second set saw Hardebeck  take a 4-2 lead and in the sixth game of the match she saved four break points.  It looked as though Hardebeck was going to send the match to a third set.  But Townsend picked up her game by mixing up baseline and net play and won the next four games in a row to win the match, 7-6, 6-4.

Towsend served seven aces in the match in contrast to Hardebeck’s  seven double faults.

“My serve was a little bit shaky today,” Hardebeck said. “It wasn’t in its best form but Taylor played really well, so there really wasn’t much I can do anyway.”

Townsend will face the Russian Yulia Putintseva for the junior girls’ title Saturday.

“She’s a very tough opponent, very competitive,” Townsend said. “She tries to get in your head with ‘c’mon’s’ to pump herself up. She kind of plays better when she’s down. I’m going to have to keep the pressure on her and keep playing my game and being aggressive and, hopefully, I’ll come out on top.”

Karen Pestaina is the founder and editor of Tennis Panorama News.

This article originally appeared in the Straight Sets Tennis Blog of the New York Times.

 

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