Friday, June 20, 2014

Ex-Stanford star falls in Wimbledon qualifying

Nicole Gibbs, above, lost to Victoria Duval
in the final round of Wimbledon qualifying.
2012 photo by Paul Bauman
   Nicole Gibbs' main draw debut at Wimbledon will have to wait.
   The former Stanford star lost to fellow American Victoria Duval, seeded 15th, 6-4, 4-6, 6-3 on Thursday in the final round of qualifying at Roehampton.
   Duval is ranked No. 115 and Gibbs No. 152, both career highs.
   The men's and women's draws will be conducted today, and main-draw play is scheduled for Monday through July 6.
   Gibbs, 21, became the fifth woman in history and fourth from Stanford to win back-to-back NCAA singles titles (2012 and 2013) and led the Cardinal to its 17th NCAA team championship last year. She then turned professional, forgoing her senior season, and lost in the opening round of qualifying at Wimbledon in her first appearance there.
   Duval, 18, is playing at Wimbledon (qualifying or main draw) for the first time. She made headlines last August at the U.S. Open by stunning 11th seed and 2011 champion Samantha Stosur in the first round as a qualifier. Duval then lost to Daniela Hantuchova.
   Earlier last summer, the eighth-seeded Duval lost in the first round of the $50,000 Sacramento Challenger to eventual champion Mayo Hibi in a matchup of 17-year-olds. 

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