All-U.S. girls' final
set at Wimbledon
Sally Milano | July 14, 2017
An American girl is guaranteed to be crowned champion at Wimbledon in 2017, as Claire Liu and Ann Li won their semifinal matches Friday to reach the girls' singles final.
This is the second straight Grand Slam tournament that an all-American girls' final will be contested, as Whitney Osuigwe defeated Liu to win the French Open girls' title last month.
It will also be the first all-American girls' final at Wimbledon since 1979, when Mary Lou Piatek defeated Alycia Moulton for the championship. The last American girl to win the title at the All England Club was Chanda Rubin, who claimed the championship in 1992.
Liu (pictured above), seeded third at Wimbledon and ranked a career-high No. 2 in the ITF World Junior Rankings, advanced to the final by defeating Sofya Lansere of Russia, 6-1, 6-3, in the semifinals. ADVERTISEMENT The 17-year-old from Thousand Oaks, Calif., has been on a roll since winning the Easter Bowl title in April, reaching the French Open final and winning the singles title and finishing runner-up in doubles at the grass-court tournament in Roehampton held earlier in July.
Li, who is unseeded in the draw, beat Simona Waltert of Switzerland, 7-6 (4), 6-1, for a spot in the final. Currently ranked 44th in the world junior rankings, the 17-year-old from Devon, Pa., upset top seed and 2016 US Open champion Kayla Day in the quarterfinals. She is playing in her first career Wimbledon and in only her third career Grand Slam tournament. Her only previous major appearances came at the US Open Junior Championships in 2015 and 2016.
American boys and girls will have contested five all-American junior singles finals at Grand Slam events since 2014, including two at Wimbledon (Noah Rubin defeated Stefan Kozlov in 2014; Liu vs. Li in 2017), two at the French Open (Tommy Paul defeated Taylor Fritz in 2015; Osuigwe defeated Liu in 2017) and one at the US Open (Fritz defeated Paul in 2015).
In other junior action, Patrick Kypson of Greenville, N.C., continued his winning ways, defeating Czech Michael Vrbensky, 6-2, 6-1, to reach the boys' singles semifinals. Kypson, 17, will next take on Spaniard Alejandro Davidovich Fokina on Saturday.
In doubles, American Sebastian Korda (with Nicolas Mejia of Colombia) and Andrew Fenty, (with Yshai Oliel of Israel) are into the boys' quarterfinals. And in the girls' doubles, the all-American team of Osuigwe and Caty McNally are into the semifinals along with Sofia Sewing, who is playing with Mexico’s Maria Jose Portillo Ramirez.