Pittsburgh was overflowing with a mix of nerves, excitement and remarkable competition last week as two tennis tournaments filled the South Hills.
The PNC Men’s Futures of Pittsburgh and the historic West Penn Amateur Open each took place at the Mount Lebanon Tennis Facility last week, bringing together a group of high-level players from all over the world.
The Men’s Futures event is a USTA Pro Circuit Event in which high-level players from across the world compete for prize money and ATP points.
Meanwhile, the National Collegiate Clay Court Championships/West Penn Amateur has a 125-year history and attracts top high school and college talent from across the nation.
Perhaps one of the most shocking matches of the Men’s Futures was between Jean-Yves Aubone and Tony Martin. After an upsetting loss just days before in Rochester, N.Y., Aubone launched a dramatic comeback, beating Tony Martin of Great Britain in a well-earned 1-6, 7-5, 7-6 (8-6) victory.
“It wasn’t sweet, it wasn’t easy; it was difficult,” Aubone told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette following the match. “I can’t believe that I came out with the match to be honest.”
In the doubles final at the Futures, competitors Luke Bambridge and Liam Broady of Great Britain paired up to defeat Gonzales Austin and Quinton Vega, 7-5, 6-4.
At the West Penn Amateur, 16-year-old Adam Ambrozy dominated both the singles and doubles draw. In his singles match, the Florida native hung in to win after a super tiebreak, defeating Zachary Bessette, 6-1, 5-7, 10-4.
In the doubles match, Ambrozy and his partner, Ninan Kuman, claimed victory over Peter Hazlett (Mt. Lebanon) and John Wu (West Chester, Pa.)
On the women’s side, recent high school graduate and Hawaii native Sarah Dvorak took the title against Hailey Barrett. In doubles, Dvorak and Sara Tsukamoto fell to University of Pittsburgh rising sophomore Audrey Ann Blakely and incoming Pittsburgh freshman Callie Frey. Blakely of Reading and Frey of Mt. Lebanon will join each other on the court once again this fall as teammates on the Pitt squad.
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The USTA launched its Pro Circuit 34 years ago to provide players with the opportunity to gain the professional ranking points needed to compete on the major pro tours. It has since grown to become the largest developmental tennis circuit in the world, consisting of approximately 90 tournaments and nearly $3 million in prize money. The expanded schedule gives American players more competitive opportunities in the United States, thus making it easier and more affordable to earn a pro ranking.
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