2013 @TallyChallenger Tuesday Recap: Kuznetsov and Odesnik Keep Wild Card Race Alive, Jeong Upsets Russell
Alex Kuznetsov and Wayne Odesnik kept the French Open Wild Card race alive for another round as both advanced today in Tallahassee. Kuznetsov looked sluggish at the start against a shot-spotting Jack Sock, but recovered in the 2nd and 3rd sets for a 3-6 6-2 6-3 win. Sock hit the ball well, but his footwork failed him as he was slipping and stumbling on the clay on which he obviously wasn’t used to playing.
Odesnik won a back and forth battle with Denys Molchanov 4-6 6-3 6-4, similar to their previous 3 set match in Sarasota 2 weeks ago. Odesnik is usually quite a rowdy player, but it was Molchanov who provided the spark and spice this time, yelling at himself, and at times, towards his girlfriend sitting in the stands, in Ukrainian, and doing enough physical monologuing to qualify as an announcer for his own match. He may well have found a future career. He also hurled his racquet into the fence after being broken in the 3rd set. Both guys had struggles holding serve at times
The Harrison brothers both grabbed wins: Christian the Younger over Steve Johnson 7-6 6-1, in a match with 1 competitive set and then a letdown from Johnson. The air really came out of his game after losing the opening set tiebreak, and similar to Jack Sock, he struggled with his surface footwork and just didn’t look comfortable moving around
Ryan the Elder found himself in a much tighter match with Taro Daniel, 6-3 6-7 7-6. Daniel showed a lot of big game to hang with the number 2 seed and ATP regular, but Harrison just had that little bit of extra skill that put him over the top in the key moments
Suk-Young Jeong upset top seed Michael Russell 7-6 6-3, as his coaching team cheered him on. Both players were hesitant to get overly aggressive, but Russell never seemed comfortable and was totally out of sorts the entire match, exclaiming loudly near the end “it’s so different than last week!”
In other singles action, Frank Dancevic got past Ilija Bozoljac 7-5 6-3, Tim Smyczek scooted past Greg Jones, who struggled on serve, 6-3 7-5, and Bradley Klahn rolled past Nico Barrientos 6-3 6-2. Mischa Zverev handled Nikolosz Basilashvili 6-4 6-0, Peter Polansky was in a good mood as he finished off Dominic Cotrone 6-2 6-4 and Donald Young struggled a bit with Michael Venus’ serve but Young cracked the code and advanced 7-5 6-4.
In the night cap, Denis Kudla struggled a bit on serve but held strong from the baseline and beat Somdev Devvarman 7-6 6-4, Devvarman giving away the breaks he did have in the match
The match of the day in terms of ball striking alone would have to be Facundo Arguello’s 7-5 7-6 win over Reid Carleton. Both players dealt with burning sun and scorching heat as a visibly tired Arguello labored away against a gritty Carleton. Both players were throwing missiles at each other and grunting loudly. Arguello is also quite a verbalizer and was snapping at his coach in Spanish after almost every point, during changeovers and everything else. Carleton countered with “c’mons” of his own but just didn’t quite have enough to beat the skilled Argentine
In doubles Rice/Thornley beat Gonzales/Letcher 1-6 6-2 10-6, Jones/Polansky beat Barrientos/Molchanov 6-4 6-7 10-6, C. Harrison/Venus beat Bucaro/Lock 6-3 6-4, Kante/Takura beat Saleh/Santiago 6-4 6-4 and Basilashvili/Melzer beat Reed/Sock 4-6 6-3 10-7.