Notes and Observations From the 2010 U.S. Open Junior Championships
by Colette Lewis
, 17 September 2010
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With 18-year-olds Ryan Harrison and Beatrice Capra posting big upsets in the men's and women's draw in the first week, the stage was set for other young Americans to hold the spotlight in the U.S. Open Junior Championships. They didn't disappoint, with Jack Sock defeating Denis Kudla in the first all-American boys final since Andy Roddick beat Robby Ginepri in 2000, and Sloane Stephens capturing her third consecutive junior Grand Slam doubles title. Here are a dozen observations and highlights of the year's final junior slam.
The biggest upset that wasn't
Andrea Collarini, who played only one other junior tournament in 2010, reaching the boys final at Roland Garros, required a wild card from the USTA to participate at Flushing Meadows. The former Argentina-based 18-year-old was drawn against top seed Juan Sebastian Gomez of Colombia in the first round in New York, and to the surprise of almost no one, Collarini emerged with an arduous three-set victory that featured points as long as any played on red clay.
Dennis Novikov hadn't posted any singles wins at Roland Garros or Wimbledon this year, but in New York, the 16-year-old Floridian reached the quarterfinals unseeded, and recorded one of his best wins as a junior, defeating No. 7 seed Duilio Beretta of Peru.
Surprise result of the tournament
Qualifier Robin Anderson had played very little this summer while she worked on her game at the USTA's Regional Training Center in College Park Maryland. But the 17-year-old from New Jersey qualified for her first junior slam in New York, took down No. 11 An-Sophie Mestach of Belgium in the first round, and stunned No. 8 seed Laura Robson of Great Britain in the third round. With her forehand, speed and defense, Anderson is a threat to any junior, yet her poised and determined 6-3, 6-2 win over Robson, the WTA's 229th-ranked player and a veteran of eight junior slams, still falls into the major upset category.
Best press conference
Longtime friends and rivals Denis Kudla and Evan King played a nationally televised third round classic in Louis Armstrong Stadium with Jimmy Connors and Tracy Austin doing the commentary for Tennis Channel. After a joint post-match interview with Austin, they provided an encore in Interview Room 2, when the relaxed pair discussed their rivalry, the match, and having access to radar and Hawkeye challenges. Their demeanor, especially King's, who lost the match, reminded everyone in the room that tennis is, after all, supposed to be fun.