Saturday, February 11, 2017

No. 1 seed Tiafoe, No. 8 Kudla fall in S.F. Challenger

Nineteen-year-old Michael Mmoh, above, will face veteran
Vasek Pospisil, formerly ranked No. 25, tonight in the semi-
finals of the KPSF Open in San Francisco. Mmoh beat Pos-
psil two weeks ago in Maui. 2016 photo by Paul Bauman
   A 19-year-old American reached the semifinals of the $100,000 KPSF Open in San Francisco, but it's not the top seed.
   Unseeded Michael Mmoh beat countryman Denis Kudla, seeded eighth, 2-6, 6-3, 6-4 indoors on Friday at the Bay Club SF Tennis Center. Mmoh trailed 4-2 in the third set.
   No. 7 seed Vasek Pospisil showed the form that took him to No. 25 in the world three years ago, downing Mmoh's best friend, No. 1 Frances Tiafoe, 6-1, 6-4 in 56 minutes.
   Both matches were first-time encounters. That will not be the case when Pospisil and Mmoh meet tonight at 7. Live streaming is available.
   Mmoh defeated Pospisil, a 26-year-old Canadian, 3-6, 6-4, 6-3 in the first round of the $75,000 Maui Challenger two weeks ago en route to the quarterfinals.
   This will be the second meeting between Pospisil, ranked No. 131, and Mmoh, ranked No. 193.
   In the bottom half of the draw, fifth-seeded Henri Laaksonen of Switzerland and qualifier Ze Zhang of China advanced with straight-set victories. In the opening round, Zhang shocked second-seeded Taylor Fritz, another 19-year-old American.
   Laaksonen, 24, and Zhang, 26, will meet for the first time. They are ranked No. 124 and No. 195, respectively.
   Pospisil, 6-foot-4 (1.93 meters), blasted 14 aces, committed no double faults and did not face a break point against Tiafoe. Pospisil won 24 of 29 points (83 percent) on his first serve and 12 of 16 (75 percent) on his second delivery.
   Here are the KSPF Open singles and doubles draws and today's schedule.

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