Rising Star Jessie Levine and USTA Boys' 18s National Champion Austin Krajicek Headline US Open Wild Cards
WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. — The USTA today announced that a talented group of Americans consisting of Amer Delic (Jacksonville, Fla.), Brendan Evans (Key Biscayne, Fla.), Scoville Jenkins (Atlanta), Austin Krajicek (Bryan, Texas), Jesse Levine (Boca Raton, Fla.), and Sam Warburg (Sacramento, Calif.), along with two international players, Carsten Ball (Australia) and Laurent Recouderc (France), have been awarded men’s singles main draw wild card entries into the 2008 US Open Tennis Championships, which will be played August 25 - September 7 at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing, N.Y.
Both the men’s and women’s US Open singles champions will earn $1.5 million with the ability to earn an additional $1 million in bonus prize money (for a total $2.5 million potential payout) based on their performance in the Olympus US Open Series. In addition, both US Open singles champions will receive a new 2009 Lexus IS-F automobile.
Delic, 26, of Jacksonville, Fla., a former NCAA singles champion, is ranked No. 128. In 2008, Delic qualified for the Australian Open and reached the second round, and he also qualified for ATP events in Delray Beach (reaching the round of 16) and Las Vegas (reaching the quarterfinals). On this year’s USTA Pro Circuit, he has won two events—$50,000 Carson, Calif., in June and $50,000 Dallas in January—and reached the semifinals at $50,000 Baton Rouge, La. He is currently one of the USTA Pro Circuit’s top prize money leaders for 2008.
Evans, 22, of Key Biscayne, Fla., is ranked No. 188. He advanced to the second round of an ATP event in Newport. This summer on the USTA Pro Circuit, he reached the quarterfinals at $50,000 Binghamton, N.Y., and $50,000 Winnetka, Ill. Earlier this year, Evans reached the semifinals at $50,000 Dallas and the final in singles and doubles (with partner Mustafa Ghouse) at the New Delhi Challenger in India. He holds five career doubles titles and two USTA Pro Circuit singles titles.
Jenkins, 21, of Atlanta, is at a career-high ranking of No. 195. He advanced to the main draw of the 2008 French Open after winning three qualifying matches, including a victory over top 100 player Kevin Anderson. On the USTA Pro Circuit, he recently reached the final at $50,000 Winnetka, Ill. and the semifinals at $75,000 Aptos, Calif., in back-to-back events in July. In 2007, Jenkins reached the main draw of the 2007 US Open through qualifying, losing in the first round to eventual champion Roger Federer.
Krajicek, 18, of Bryan, Texas, earned his wild card after winning the USTA Boys’ 18s National Championship in Kalamazoo, Mich. On the USTA Pro Circuit, he reached the quarterfinals at the $10,000 Futures event in Godfrey, Ill. in July and the semifinals at the $10,000 Futures event in Mansfield, Texas in 2007. Krajicek currently plays for Texas A&M University.
Levine, 20, of Boca Raton, Fla., is ranked No. 106. He reached the second round of the Australian Open in January and followed that by reaching the round of 16 at the ATP event in San Jose. He won his first singles title of the year on the USTA Pro Circuit at $50,000 Brandenton, Fla. in May. In 2007, he qualified for the ATP event in Newport and won $75,000 Nashville, Tenn. (as a qualifier) and $50,000 Champaign, Ill. on the USTA Pro Circuit. As a freshman at the University at Florida, Levine went 24-1 (his only loss coming to John Isner in the NCAA quarterfinals) and turned pro after the season.
Warburg, 25, of Sacramento, Calif., is ranked No. 147. He began 2008 with a second round appearance at the Australian Open (as a qualifier), where he fell to eventual runner-up Jo Wilfried-Tsonga of France. Subsequently, Warburg reached the main draw (through qualifying) at ATP events in San Jose, Memphis and Miami. On the USTA Pro Circuit, he won the singles title at the $50,000 Bronx Challenger last August and reached the final of the New Orleans Challenger after competing in qualifying at the 2007 US Open. Warburg was a four-time All-American at Stanford University and won the NCAA doubles championship in 2004.
Ball, 21 of Australia, is ranked a career high No. 182, and received his wild card through a reciprocal agreement with Tennis Australia, which will grant a men’s main draw wild card into the 2009 Australian Open to a player to be designated by the USTA. On this year’s USTA Pro Circuit, he won the $15,000 Futures event in Shingle Springs, Calif., and was a finalist at the $50,000 Challenger event in Tunica, Miss. In addition, he reached the semifinals at Challenger events in Aptos, Calif., and Binghamton, N.Y.
Recouderc, 24, of Toulouse, France, is ranked No. 194. He received his wild card through a reciprocal agreement with the French Tennis Federation, which granted a men’s main draw wild card into the 2008 French Open to a player designated by the USTA. In June 2008, Recouderc won a singles title at a Challenger-level event in Poland.
In addition to the eight US Open men’s singles main draw wild cards, the USTA also announced the nine men who have been awarded wild card entries into the US Open Qualifying Tournament, which will be held August 19 - 22 at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center.
Players receiving US Open qualifying wild cards are: Jean Yves Aubone (20, Miami), Ricardas Berankis (18, Lithuania), Chase Buchanan (17, Columbus, OH), Alex Clayton (20, Bradenton, Fla.), Ryan Harrison (16, New Braunfels, Tex.), Travis Helgeson (22, Overland Park, Kan.), Bryan Koniecko (21, Syosset, N.Y.), Michael McClune (18, Irvine, Calif.) and Tim Smyczek (20, Hales Corners, Wis.).
The 2008 US Open will be held Monday, August 25 through Sunday, September 7. Tickets for the 2008 US Open can be purchased four ways: 1) at usopen.org; 2) by calling Ticketmaster at 1-866 OPEN-TIX; 3) at all Ticketmaster outlets; or 4) at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center box office. American Express is the Official Card of the US Open.
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