Four players who trained at the Junior Tennis Champions Center (JTCC), the area’s world-class tennis training facility in College Park, Md., will be competing in the upcoming Citi Open tennis tournament at the William H.G. Fitzgerald Tennis Center. The tournament kicks off this weekend and runs through August 5.
JTCC alumni Beatrice Capra and Denis Kudla received main draw acceptance into the singles draw, while two additional JTCC alumni – Mitchell Frank and Alison Riske – were given singles qualifying wild card slots. Qualifying match play begins Saturday at 10 a.m. and main draw play begins Sunday at 10 a.m.
“It is a thrill to see our alumni displaying their skills, determination and love for the game at such a high level competition and important tournament,” said Ray Benton, chief executive officer of JTCC. “They show the best in tennis and the best of JTCC as they compete at this elite level.”
The JTCC alumni are strong contenders in the tournament, which has the tradition of being a launching pad for many young stars.
- Kudla is currently ranked No. 93 in singles in the ATP. The 20-year-old has had a breakout summer, entering into the top 100 for the first time as well as reaching the quarterfinals at the Queen’s Club tournament in June. He continued with a strong showing at Wimbledon, reaching the second round in London for the first time in his career. He most recently competed stateside at BB&T Atlanta Open prior to heading to the District to compete at the Citi Open.
- Capra was previously ranked second among Division I women’s players while at Duke University and earned ACC Player of the Year, Freshman of the Year and ACC Tournament’s MVP honors in 2012. In 2010 she won the U.S. Open wild card playoff tournament, earning a bid to the U.S. Open where she advanced to the third round.
- Frank, of Annandale, Va., helped lead the University of Virginia to their first NCAA championship. He ended his freshman year ranked second among NCAA Division I men’s players, posting a 38-2 record. Frank won the USTA/ITA National Indoor championship and was named the 2012 ITA national rookie of the year.
- Riske is currently ranked No. 96 in singles in the WTA. A talented young player on the rise, she earned a wild card entry at this year’s Wimbledon and advanced to the third round, one of only four U.S. women to last that long in the tournament.
The Citi Open is one of only 11 elite ATP World Tour 500-level events worldwide and the only one held in the United States. The event is also part of the prestigious Emirates Airline US Open Series, the five-week summer tennis season that links nine North American hard-court tournaments to the final Grand Slam of the year, the US Open. In addition, the Citi Open features a WTA International Tournament which provides fans the opportunity to watch simultaneous competitions of both world-class men’s and women’s tennis throughout the nine-day event. The tournament features 48 men’s singles players and 16 doubles teams, 32 women’s singles players and 16 doubles teams.