Pro Circuit Round-up:
Teens win first titles
Sally Milano | July 31, 2017
Two rising American stars – Amanda Anisimova of Hallandale Beach, Fla., and Ann Li of Devon, Pa. – posted big results on the USTA Pro Circuit last week, both earning the first pro titles of their young careers.
Fifteen-year-old Anisimova (pictured above) captured her first pro title without having to take the court, as her opponent, Ajla Tomljanovic, withdrew before the singles final a tthe $60,000 event in Sacramento, Calif., with a shoulder injury. Anisimova's run to the title included upset wins over No. 3 seed and reigning US Open girls' champion Kayla Day in the first round and No. 2 seed and former Stanford star Kristie Ahn in the semifinals.
Currently ranked 10th in the ITF World Junior Rankings and a career-high No. 188 in the WTA rankings, Anisimova was playing in her third USTA Pro Circuit final of the year. ADVERTISEMENT She also reached back-to-back finals in April at the $80,000 event in Indian Harbour Beach, Fla., and the $60,000 tournament in Dothan, Ala. – the first main-draw USTA Pro Circuit events of her career. By reaching those finals, Anisimova won the 2017 French Open Wild Card Challenge to earn a main-draw wild card into the 2017 French Open, where she became the youngest player to compete in the main draw since Alize Cornet in 2005 and the first player born in 2001 to compete in a Grand Slam main draw.
Li, 17, stunned No. 2 seed Marcela Zacarias of Mexico, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3, Sunday in the final of the $15,000 Women's Hospital Deasoness 2017 Classic in Evansville, Ind., to win her first career pro title. A wild card into the tournament, Li upset No. 4 seed Alexa Graham, 6-3, 7-5, in the first round and 2017 French Open girls' champion Whitney Osuigwe, 6-1, 3-6, 7-6(3), in the second round en route to the title.
Currently ranked 16th in the ITF World Junior Rankings, Li reached the girls' final at Wimbledon earlier this month, where she faced Claire Liu in the second-ever all American girls' final at the All England Club dating back to 1947. She has committed to play college tennis at LSU.
Other American highlights from USTA and ITF Pro Circuit events last week include:
- Tommy Paul and Chris Eubanks reached the quarterfinals at the BB&T Atlanta Open in Atlanta, the first US Open Series tournament of the year, and are now in first and second place, respectively, in the men's US Open Wild Card Challenge standings.
- William Blumberg and Christian Harrison reached the singles semifinals at the $75,000 Binghamton Challenger. The all-American doubles duo of Denis Kudla and Daniel Nguyen won the doubles title at the tournament, upsetting the No. 1- and No. 4-seeded teams en route to the championship.
- Deiton Baughman reached both the singles and doubles finals at the $25,000 Futures of Champaign-Urbana. Dennis Nevolo and Jeffrey Schorsch advanced to the singles semifinals, and Harrison Adams and Yates Johnson captured the doubles title at the tournament.
- Jackson Withrow won the doubles title at the ATP $100,000 Challenger in Granby, Canada. Mackenzie McDonald reached the singles quarterfinals at the event.
- Raleigh Smith won the doubles title at the ITF Pro Circuit $15,000 Event in Mohammedia, Morocco.
- Peter Kobelt finished runner-up in singles at the ITF Pro Circuit $25,000 Event in Dublin, Ireland.
- In addition to Anisimova's win and Ahn's semifinal performance in Sacramento, Sofia Kenin reached the singles semifinals, Jennifer Brady, Danielle Collins and Irina Falconi advanced to the quarterfinals, and Desirae Krawczyk won the doubles title at the tournament.
- Three of the four singles semifinalists in Evansville were American, as Allie Kiick and Lorraine Guillermo reached the semis, along with champion Li. Guillermo also won the doubles title at the tournament, teaming with fellow American Madeleine Kobelt to beat Lauren Proctor of the U.S. and Alice Garcia of Brazil in the final.
- Quinn Gleason reached the singles semifinals and doubles final at the ITF Pro Circuit $15,000 Event in Dublin, Ireland.
- Kariann Pierre-Louis reached the doubles final at the ITF Pro Circuit $15,000 Event in Les Contamines-Montjoie, France.