Monday, October 5, 2015

Nielsen triumphs in matchup of Wimbledon champs

Frederik Nielsen, who won the Wimbledon men's
doubles title in 2012 with Jonathan Marray, beat
Reilly Opelka, this year's Wimbledon boys singles
champion, in straight sets in the second round
of qualifying for the $100,000 Sacramento
Challenger. 2012 file photo by Paul Bauman
   In a matchup of former and current Wimbledon champions, second-seeded Frederik Nielsen of Denmark beat wild card Reilly Opelka of Palm Coast, Fla., 6-2, 6-4 on Sunday in the second round of qualifying for the $100,000 Sacramento Challenger at the Natomas Racquet Club.
   In 2012, Nielsen and Jonathan Marray of Great Britain became the first wild cards to win the Wimbledon men's doubles title. The 6-foot-11 (2.11-meter) Opelka, 18, captured the Wimbledon boys singles title in July.
   Opelka has a booming serve, but he said Saturday that the Natomas courts are slow. Nielsen, meanwhile, has a tremendous return-of-serve.
   After the match, Nielsen drove two hours to Tiburon, where he won the doubles title in another $100,000 Challenger with Johan Brunstrom of Sweden. They were the top seeds.
   Nielsen, the 32-year-old grandson of two-time Wimbledon singles runner-up Kurt Nielsen, will play Eric Johnson of San Jose today for a berth in the main draw. Johnson, who graduated from USC this year, defeated No. 7 seed Jose Statham of New Zealand 6-4, 3-6, 6-3.
   No. 6 Tommy Paul, who won the French Open boys singles title in June, topped Ruben Gonzales of the Philippines 3-6, 6-3, 6-2. Paul, 18, of Boca Raton, Fla., will face No. 3 Dimitar Kutrovsky, a former University of Texas All-American from Bulgaria. The diminutive Kutrovsky, who hits with two hands on both sides, dismissed Cal junior Andre Goransson of Sweden 6-3, 6-2.
   Goransson's teammate at Cal, Florian Lakat of France, lost to No. 5 Nicolas Meister, a former UCLA All-American, 6-2, 6-2. Tom Fawcett, a 6-foot-6 (1.98-meter) sophomore at Stanford, fell to No. 4 Henri Laaksonen of Switzerland 6-3, 6-2.
   Admission is $5 daily today through Thursday, $10 for Friday's quarterfinals, and $15 daily for Saturday's semifinals and next Sunday's finals.      All-tournament and semifinal-final packages cost $50 and $20, respectively. Admission is free for youths 17 and under throughout the tournament and for seniors 60 and over Monday through Thursday. 
At Natomas Racquet Club
Second-round qualifying
   Dimitar Kutrovsky (3), Bulgaria, def. Andre Goransson, Sweden, 6-3, 6-2.
   Adrien Bossel (1), Switzerland, def. Andre Dome, United States, 6-3, 6-4.
   Frederik Nielsen (2), Denmark, def. Reilly Opelka, United States, 6-2, 6-4.
   Tommy Paul (6), United States, def. Ruben Gonzales, Philippines, 3-6, 6-3, 6-2.
   Henri Laaksonen (4), Switzerland, def. Tom Fawcett, United States, 6-3, 6-2.
   Nicolas Meister (5), United States, def. Florian Lakat, France, 6-2, 6-2.
   Eric Johnson, United States, def. Jose Statham (7), New Zealand, 6-4, 3-6, 6-3.
   Marcos Giron (8), United States, def. Fritz Wolmarans, South Africa, 3-6, 7-6 (6), 7-5.
Today's schedule
Court 1
(Starting at 10 a.m.)
    Dimitar Kutrovsky (3), Bulgaria, vs. Tommy Paul (6), United States (final-round qualifying).
(Not before 11:30 a.m.)
    Kyle Edmund (2), Great Britain, vs. Darian King, Barbados.
 (Not before 1 p.m.)
   Blaz Kavcic and Grega Zemlja, Slovenia, vs. Quentin Halys, France, and Frances Tiafoe, United States.
   Dennis Novikov (6), United States, vs. Sekou Bangoura, United States.  
Court 7
(Starting at 10 a.m.)
   Henri Laaksonen (4), Switzerland, vs. Nicolas Meister (5), United States (final-round qualifying).
(Not before 11:30 a.m.)
   Blaz Rola (5), Slovenia, vs. Jason Jung, Taiwan.
   Brydan Klein, Great Britain, vs. Daniel Brands, Germany.
   Dean O'Brien and Ruan Roelofse (2), South Africa, vs. Taylor Fritz and Reilly Opelka, United States.   
Court 10
(Starting at 10 a.m.) 
   Adrien Bossel (1), Switzerland, vs. Marcos Giron (8), United States (final-round qualifying).
(Not before 11 a.m.)
   Frederik Nielsen (2), Denmark, vs. Eric Johnson, United States (final-round qualifying).
(Not before 1:30 p.m.)
   Evan King, United States, and Dimitar Kutrovsky, Bulgaria, vs. Andre Dome, United States, and Ben McLachlan, New Zealand.
   Mitchell Krueger and Connor Smith, United States, vs. Marcos Giron and Tommy Paul, United States.

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