7 Kastles Players Win 1st Round MatchesAugust 30, 2012 - World TeamTennis (WTT) Washington Kastles
Seven of the eight won their first-round matches to give Washington the best start to the tournament of any World TeamTennis franchise.
Venus and Serena Williams eased into the second round of singles on Tuesday with straight-set wins over countrywomen: Venus defeating wild card Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Serena storming past CoCo Vandeweghe of the Sacramento Capitals.
A much taller task awaits Venus in her next match against No. 6 seed Angelique Kerber. Already this month, the German left-hander beat Venus in two tiebreakers at The Olympic Games and stunned Serena at the US Open Series event in Cincinnati.
Venus vs. Kerber (2nd after 7 pm) and Serena vs. Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez (3rd after 11 am) can both be seen today on ESPN2 or via live streaming at USOpen.org.
Besides advancing in singles, the Williams sisters played doubles on Wednesday in front of a standing-room only Grandstand crowd. They again eliminated a pair of Americans, advancing past Lindsay Lee-Waters and Megan Moulton-Levy 6-4, 6-0.
Like the Williams sisters, Australian Open champions Leander Paes and Radek Stepanek are out to win a second major title this season.
They got off to a great start on Wednesday by defeating Dustin Brown and Christopher Kas 6-3, 6-3. Paes, the 2009 and 2011 WTT Male MVP with the Kastles, is now 19-3 lifetime with Stepanek on hard courts.
Kastles' closer Bobby Reynolds qualified in singles for the fifth time at a tour-level event this season, with two of his three wins airing live nationwide on CBS Sports Network. As Kastles' fans, teammates Paes and Treat Huey, Coach Murphy Jensen and Team Owner Mark Ein watched from the crowd, Reynolds saved three match points before falling on Monday to Tim Smyczek 1-6, 6-4, 6-2, 4-6, 6-4.
Anastasia Rodionova rolled through three qualifying matches and her first-round main draw singles match in dominant fashion, winning 48 of 62 games to set up a second-rounder on Wednesday versus No. 31 seed Varvara Lepchenko. Though the first-year Kastle's run ended 6-2, 6-2 at the hands of the in-form Lepchenko, Rodionova will return to the courts in women's and mixed doubles.
Like Rodionova, Kastles' substitute Edina Gallovits-Hall qualified and won her first-rounder 7-5, 6-4 over Stefanie Voegele. It was the Romanian's first main draw US Open victory in her 10th appearance in New York City. She was denied a second victory by defending champion Samantha Stosur 6-3, 6-0 on Wednesday.
Huey, another Kastles' substitute, gained a measure of revenge alongside his former University of Virginia teammate Dominic Inglot. After falling to James Blake (Philadelphia Freedoms) and Sam Querrey (Sacramento Capitals) in April's Houston ATP final, Huey and Inglot knocked off Blake and Querrey 6-1, 7-6(7) in a first-round men's doubles match on Wednesday. The ex-Cavaliers also beat Querrey and fellow Capital Kevin Anderson in the final of the Citi Open earlier this month.
Huey's Washington mixed doubles partner Raquel Kops-Jones is also through to the second round in doubles, teaming with Abigail Spears of the New York Sportimes to defeat Dominika Cibulkova and Daniela Hantuchova 4-6, 6-1, 6-2 on Wednesday. Besides playing for rival WTT teams, the No. 9 seeds also went to competing colleges: Kops-Jones played for Cal-Berkeley and Spears represented UCLA.
Be sure to visit the 'Keeping up with the Kastles' tracker on WashingtonKastles.com for full US Open Kastles results and schedules, links to live scoring and streaming, and details on how you can catch the Kastles on TV.
Washington's winning ways have rubbed off on 2009 Kastle Olga Puchkova, who followed three qualifying victories with a 7-6(5), 6-7(2), 6-3 first-round victory on Tuesday over Irina Falconi of the Boston Lobsters. Kastles fans will never forget when Puchkova saved three championship points to lead the Kastles to their first WTT title three summers ago.
More magical moments are bound to occur when the Kastles compete for their third King Trophy during WTT Finals Weekend Sept. 15-16 in Charleston, S.C. After their time in New York City is through, Reynolds, Paes, Venus Williams and Anastasia Rodionova will join Coach Jensen and Arina Rodionova at the Family Circle Tennis Center.
Detailed information on WTT Finals Weekend tickets, hotels, flights and team events can be found on WashingtonKastles.com.
2012 WTT Finals Weekend Player Update
Hingis in for Sportimes, Davenport out for Breakers
Martina Hingis, the 2012 World TeamTennis Female MVP, has been added to the lineup of tennis stars for the WTT Finals Weekend presented by GEICO, Sept. 14-16, at the Family Circle Tennis Center in Charleston, S.C.
Hingis, a five-time Grand Slam singles champion, confirmed to league officials Wednesday that she will be in Charleston to lead her New York Sportimes. The Swiss star is expected to face Venus Williams in women's singles during the Eastern Conference championship showdown on Sept. 15 at 6:30 pm between long-time rivals, the Sportimes and Williams' undefeated Washington Kastles.
This will be a rematch of the July 21 contest that saw Williams rally the Kastles from six games back by defeating Hingis 5-1 in a set, 2-0 in overtime and 7-0 in a Supertiebreaker, keeping the Kastles' now 30-match winning streak intact.
The lineup for the Kastles will be Williams, 2012 WTT Male MVP Bobby Reynolds, Leander Paes, Anastasia Rodionova and Arina Rodionova . Hingis will be joined by Hall of Famer John McEnroe, Jesse Witten, Robert Kendrick, and Ashley Harkleroad for the Sportimes.
The Western Conference title will be decided on Sept. 14 at 6:30 pm when the six-time champion Sacramento Capitals battle the Orange County Breakers.
The Breakers will be without the services of WTT veteran Lindsay Davenport, who is out of the WTT Finals Weekend with a torn ligament in her left wrist. Davenport will be replaced in the Breakers lineup by 2011 NCAA singles champion Jana Juricova, who played nine matches for Orange County during the regular season.
The Conference Champions advance to the WTT Finals on Sept. 16 at 3:30 pm, with the winner taking home the King Trophy.
It promises to be a memorable weekend in beautiful Charleston, with lots of Kastles fans making the trip. Among the planned events exclusive for Kastles fans are a pre-match barbecue and a post-match party with the players after the Eastern Conference Championship match. Detailed information on WTT Finals Weekend tickets, hotels, flights and team events can be found on WashingtonKastles.com.
WTT Finals Weekend presented by GEICO - Schedule
Western Conference Championship -#2 Sacramento Capitals vs. #1 ORANGE COUNTY BREAKERS - Friday, September 14 - 6:30 PM EDT
Eastern Conference Championship - #2 New York Sportimes vs. #1 WASHINGTON KASTLES - Saturday, September 15 - 6:30 PM EDT
WTT Finals - #2 Western Conference Champion vs. #1 EASTERN CONFERENCE CHAMPION - Sunday, September 16 - 3:30 PM EDT
Team Rosters (subject to change)
Leander Paes (IND)
Bobby Reynolds (USA)
Anastasia Rodionova (AUS)
Arina Rodionova (RUS)
Venus Williams (USA)
Coach: Murphy Jensen
NEW YORK SPORTIMES
Ashley Harkleroad (USA)
Martina Hingis (SUI)
Robert Kendrick (USA)
John McEnroe (USA)
Jesse Witten (USA)
Coach: Chuck Adams
ORANGE COUNTY BREAKERS
Anna-Lena Groenefeld (GER)
Jana Juricova (SVK)
Travis Parrott (USA)
John-Patrick Smith (AUS)
Coach: Trevor Kronemann
Kevin Anderson (RSA)
Mark Knowles (BAH)
Asia Muhammad (USA)
Yasmin Schnack (USA)
Coach: Wayne Bryan
World TeamTennis Stories from August 30, 2012
- 7 Kastles Players Win 1st Round Matches - Washington Kastles
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