Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Smyczek, Fairfield top seed, trails in suspended match

Mitchell Krueger, playing last week in Sacramento, leads top
seed Tim Smyczek 7-6 (5), 2-6, 3-1 in the first round of the
$50,000 Fairfield (Calif.) Challenger. Photo by Paul Bauman
   The second seed is gone, and the top seed is in trouble.
   In an all-American battle, Mitchell Krueger led No. 1 Tim Smyczek 7-6 (5), 2-6, 3-1 today in the first round of the Fairfield (Calif.) $50,000 Men's Pro Challenger at In Shape: Fairfield Rancho Solano when play was suspended by inadequate lighting.
   The match is scheduled to be completed Wednesday.
   Darian King of Barbados ousted the No. 2 seed in the first round for the second straight week on Monday. He upset Ryan Harrison 6-4, 7-5 after surprising Kyle Edmund of Great Britain last week in the $100,000 Sacramento Challenger.
   The other four seeds in action today -- No. 3 Dustin Brown of Germany, No. 5 Jared Donaldson of Irvine, Calif., No. 6 Blaz Kavic of Slovenia and No. 7 Daniel Brands of Germany -- coasted into the second round. None lost more than five games.
   Kavcic, coming off the Sacramento doubles title with countryman Grega Zemlja, dismissed 16-year-old Connor Hance of Torrance, Calif., 6-0, 6-1 in 36 minutes.
Smyczek, shown last week in Sacramento, will try
to avoid joining No. 2 seed Ryan Harrison on the
sideline. Photo by Paul Bauman
   Hance played Andre Agassi and Steffi Graf's son in a 2004 Genworth Financial television commercial co-starring Taylor Dent, now Donaldson's coach.
   Also advancing easily today was 17-year-old Taylor Fritz, who beat Donaldson in the Sacramento final for his first Challenger title. Fritz, the world's top-ranked junior, will face the winner of the Smyczek-Krueger match on Thursday.
   In a matchup of 18-year-olds, wild card Tommy Paul of Boca Raton, Fla., defeated Quentin Halys of France 6-4, 7-6 (5).
   Paul this year joined John McEnroe (1977) and Bjorn Fratangelo (2011) as the only Americans to win the French Open boys singles title.
   Halys reached the U.S. Open boys final last year and the semifinals of the $100,000 Tiburon Challenger two weeks ago.
   Fairfield, located 48 miles (77 kilometers) north of San Francisco, replaced the $50,000 Napa Challenger on the calendar. Napa tournament director Chris Arns said recently that he was unable to secure enough sponsorship to hold the Challenger for the third year.       
At In Shape: Fairfield Rancho Solano
First-round singles
   Blaz Kavcic (6), Slovenia, def. Connor Hance, United States, 6-0, 6-1.
   Dustin Brown (3), Germany, def. Connor Smith, United States, 6-0, 7-5.
   Taylor Fritz, United States, def. Henri Laaksonen, Switzerland, 6-2, 6-3.

   Peter Polansky, Canada, def. Tennys Sandgren, United States, 6-4, 6-1.
   Jared Donaldson (5), United States, def. Philip Bester, Canada, 6-2, 6-3.
   Alex Kuznetsov, United States, def. Nicolas Barrientos, Colombia, 6-4, 7-6 (6).
   Daniel Brands (7), Germany, def. Sem Verbeek, Netherlands, 6-4, 6-0.
   Liam Broady, Great Britain. def. Grega Zemlja, Slovenia, 6-4, 6-1.
   Tommy Paul, United States, def. Quentin Halys, France, 6-4, 7-6 (5).
   Jason Jung, Taiwan. def. Sekou Bangoura, United States, 6-4, 7-6 (3).
   Mitchell Krueger, United States, leads Tim Smyczek (1), United States, 7-6 (5), 2-6, 3-1, suspended by darkness. 
First-round doubles
   Philip Bester and Peter Polansky, Canada, def. Marcos Giron and Tommy Paul, United States, 6-3, 6-2.
Wednesday's schedule
Stadium Court
(Starting at 11 a.m.)
   Jared Donaldson (5), United States, vs. Frank Dancevic, Canada.
   Tim Smyczek (1), United States, vs. Mitchell Krueger, United States (completion of suspended match).
   Blaz Rola (4), Slovenia, vs. Liam Broady, Great Britain.
   James McGee (8), Ireland, vs. Frances Tiafoe, United States.
Court 1
(Starting at 11 a.m.)
   Darian King, Barbados, vs. Peter Polansky, Canada.
   Carsten Ball, Australia, and Dustin Brown (1), Germany, vs. Blaz Kavcic and Grega Zemlja, Slovenia.
(Not before 2 p.m.)
   Johan Brunstom, Sweden, and Frederik Nielsen (2), Denmark, vs. Jason Jung, Taiwan, and Connor Smith, United States (may be moved to Stadium Court).
(Not before 3 p.m.)
   Dean O'Brien and Ruan Roelofse (3), South Africa, vs. Ariel Behar, Uruguay, and Ruben Gonzales, Philippines.
Court 3
(Starting at 2 p.m.)
   Frank Dancevic, Canada, and Henri Laaksonen, Switzerland, vs. Jean-Yves Aubone and Taylor Fritz, United States.
   Mitchell Krueger and Tennys Sandgren (4), United States, vs. Nicolas Barrientos, Colombia, and Darian King, Barbados.


  1. Paul, do you see any of the young Americans dominating tennis in the near future like we've seen with Federer, Nadal, Murray and Djokovic? I was wondering of the one's I know about to some extent, Opelka, Paul, Fritz, Tiafoe, Donaldson and maybe some I don't know about.. which ones you might see able to rise to the top?

    1. Thank you for asking. All of those you mentioned have tremendous potential, as do Stefan Kozlov and Michael Mmoh. I'll post a long story on the young Americans in the next few weeks that should answer your question.