Frances Tiafoe aims to continue progress as youngest player in ATP top 100
Treat Huey sets high sights at Indian Wells
Megan Moulton-Levy combines playing and coaching duties
Frances Tiafoe has been rewarded for his excellent start to 2017 with a main draw wild card at the first ATP World Tour Masters 1000 event of the year in Indian Wells, CA. The 19-year-old faces world #106 Dusan Lajovic, a qualifier from Serbia, for the first time in the opening round at around 5:30 pm EST on Thursday.
Tiafoe has reached a career high world ranking of #86 making him the youngest player in the top 100. He followed up his first ever Grand Slam main draw win over Mikhail Kukuskin of Kazakhstan at the Australian Open in January by pushing former US Open Champion Juan Martin Del Potro to a third set tiebreak at the Abierto Mexicano Telcel in Acapulco.
The teenager’s progress has caught the eye of the United States’ Davis Cup captain Jim Courier who, speaking on the Tennis Channel, said “Tiafoe has a monster forehand and loves to compete on the big stage. I think he can be a top 10 player.”
The recent JTCC alumnus has fond memories of Indian Wells which was the scene for Tiafoe’s first ATP Masters 1000 win when he defeated fellow American Taylor Fritz in 2016. Tiafoe held two match points in the second round before losing to top 20 ATP star Belgian David Goffin.
“Frances is continuing to make rapid progress in 2017,” said Frank Salazaar, JTCC Senior Director of High Performance, who coached Tiafoe during his junior career. “He is now consistently pushing some of the biggest names on tour and is well prepared to have another good run at Indian Wells.”
Doubles specialist Treat Huey and Belarusian partner Max Miryni in California, who are ranked #30 and #29, respectively, in the ATP doubles world rankings, and will be seeking to build on their finals appearance at the recent ATP 250 event in Delray Beach, FL. They begin their campaign in Indian Wells against singles stars world #13 Grigor Dimitrov from Bulgaria and world #3 Stan Wawrinka from Switzerland. Huey reached the Indian Wells finals in 2013 with partner Jerzy Janowicz.
JTCC Senior Coach Megan Moulton-Levy and Argentinian partner Maria Irigoyen faced stiff first round competition in women’s first round doubles on Wednesday falling 6-2, 6-3 to Australian Sam Stosur and her Chinese partner Shuai Zhang.
In addition to coaching full-time for JTCC, Moutlon-Levy will be competing in up to eight WTA tournaments in 2017 using her #61 protected ranking to gain entry. Due to a serious back injury in 2015 Moutlon-Levy was forced to take off two years from competition on the WTA Tour.
Moulton-Levy began her very successful comeback at the Australian Open and reached the round of 32 with fellow American Lauren Davis as her partner.
“I feel so lucky to be back on tour and have an opportunity to finish my playing career on my own terms,” explained the 31-year-old William and Mary alumna. “I am so grateful to JTCC for making it possible for me to play a number of events this year, and I really appreciate the support I have received from all the College Park players and staff. Just being out here again on the WTA Tour is a victory in itself.”