Women's US Open National Playoffs Begins
WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. — The USTA announced today that the US Open National Playoffs - Women’s Championship will be held July 28 - August 1 at the Taube Family Tennis Center in Stanford, Calif. The tournament will be held in conjunction with the Bank of the West Classic, the first women’s event of the 2010 Olympus US Open Series. Live scoring is available through USTA.com and BankoftheWestClassic.com, and Sunday’s final will be broadcast live on Tennis Channel and available live on ESPN3.com. The winner will receive a wild card into the 2010 US Open Qualifying Tournament, held August 24-27, at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, in Flushing, N.Y., the home of the US Open.
The inaugural year of the US Open National Playoffs featured 373 women in 16 US Open National Playoffs Sectional Qualifying Tournaments, with the 16 winners advancing to the Women’s Championship. The US Open National Playoffs function as a series of tournaments held throughout the United States to make the US Open eligible to anyone and everyone 14-and-over with the passion to compete, regardless of playing ability or nationality.
“On the heels of a successful Men’s Championship that was filled with compelling matchups and gripping matches, we are eagerly anticipating the 2010 US Open National Playoffs - Women’s Championship, and with it, the opportunity to award a second wild card into the 2010 US Open Qualifying Tournament,” said Jeff Ryan, Tournament Director of the US Open National Playoffs. “We have an impressively talented field spanning a wide range of ages and are thrilled to play a role in helping one of these players achieve her dreams of competing in the US Open.”
The competitors in the Women’s Championship hail from five different countries and three different continents, and they range in age from 15 to 34. Four competitors have played collegiate tennis while three others will enroll as freshman this fall. Two have prior Grand Slam experience, 12 regularly compete on the USTA Pro Circuit, and one is a private coach.
Those competing in the US Open National Playoffs - Women’s Championship include (Sectional Qualifying Tournament in parentheses):
Jan Abaza; 15; Deerfield Beach, Fla. (USTA Florida)
Alexandra Mueller; 22; Abington, Pa. (USTA Middle States)
Brittany Augustine; 18; Carson, Calif. (USTA Southwest)
Belinda Niu; 16; Portland, Ore. (USTA Pacific Northwest)
Kaitlyn Christian; 18; Orange, Calif. (USTA So. California)
Jessica Pegula; 16; Boca Raton, Fla. (USTA Intermountain)
Maureen Diaz; 28; Glendale, Calif. (USTA Hawaii-Pacific)
Eleanor Peters; 22; Washington, D.C. (USTA Mid-Atlantic)
Courtney Dolehide; 18; Hinsdale, Ill. (USTA Northern)
Samantha Powers; 21; Rome, Ga. (USTA Southern)
Megan Falcon; 25; Baton Rouge, La. (USTA Missouri Valley)
Evangeline Repic; 15; Oakville, Canada (USTA Midwest)
Alina Jidkova; 33; Boca Raton, Fla. (USTA Texas)
Katerina Sevcikova; 28; Yonkers, N.Y. (USTA Eastern)
Rachel Kahan; 18; Unionville, Conn. (USTA New England)
Romana Tedjakusuma; 34; Tracy, Calif. (USTA No. California)
Of the competitors, only Alina Jidkova and Romana Tedjakusuma have played in the US Open main draw, while Alexandra Mueller has appeared in the US Open Qualifying Tournament.
The top-seeded Jidkova, who played in the US Open main draw each year from 2002 to 2007 and has been ranked as high as No. 51, will face Eleanor Peters, who played collegiately at Syracuse last year, in the first round. Mueller, who has won four USTA Pro Circuit titles already this year, is seeded No. 2 and will face Tedjakusuma, who reached the third round of the 1994 Australian Open and has represented Indonesia in Fed Cup. No. 3 seed Brittany Augustine, a former top-ranked player in the USTA Girls’ 14s National Standings, will take on 2008 USTA Girls’ 16s National Clay Court Champion Belinda Niu. Courtney Dolehide, who reached her first career professional final at the USTA Pro Circuit $10,000 event in Wichita, Kan., last summer, is the No. 4 seed and will face Rachel Kahan, who will play collegiately for Duke University this fall.
Other first round matchups include Samantha Powers, who has been competing in USTA Pro Circuit events since 2005, taking on future University of Southern California collegian Kaitlyn Christian. Megan Falcon, who earned All-American honors at LSU, will face 16-year-old Jessica Pegula, who reached the final of a major ITF World Junior clay-court event in Brazil earlier this year. Katerina Sevcikova, a former University of Missouri standout who lives less than an hour from the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, will play Maureen Diaz, the 1998 Girls’ 18s Easter Bowl finalist and standout player at the University of Southern California. In a matchup of the two 15-year-olds, Evangeline Repic, who represented Canada at the 2009 World Junior Tennis Competition, faces Jan Abaza, who recently gained a professional ranking for the first time by competing on the USTA Pro Circuit.
The US Open National Playoffs - Women’s Championship final is scheduled to take place on Sunday, Aug. 1, not before 4:30 p.m. on the stadium court.
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