Cinco de Mayo All Week Long For Mayo Hibi of @USTA USONP
What a week it has been for Mayo Hibi. The 17-year-old from Irvine, California is playing under the Japanese flag, but she’s every bit an American as I am. The 2013 Easter Bowl champ and USTA International Spring Champ won on Saturday, Sunday and Monday to clinch the US Open National Playoffs from New Haven.
When I interviewed her on Monday, she said “It feels great. I mean, I’m finally into the US Open. It’s always been a dream to get in.”
Yesterday, she won her first-ever US Open qualifying match, outlasting American Allie Kiick by a count of 6-3, 3-6, 6-1. It was a match that was nationally televised on CBS Sports Channel in prime time.
Today, she plays Anastasia Rodionova on Court 10 in the fourth match of the day. Could she upset Rodionova for Win Numero Cinco? Hibi has never played Anastasia before, but she did play her sister, Arina, in Las Vegas last year.
By the way, I learned to pronounce her name by remembering Cinco de Mayo. Whatever you do, DO NOT pronounce her name like the condiment.