Fish and Vandeweghe Lead Wild Card Entrants

Photo by Rita Payne

Two-time Cincinnati finalist Mardy Fish and Wimbledon quarterfinalist CoCo Vandeweghe headline the wild card recipients for the 2015 Western & Southern Open.

 

Four men – Fish, Rajeev Ram, Bjorn Fratangelo and Jared Donaldson – and three women – Vandeweghe, Ali Riske and Daniela Hantuchova – have been added to their respective fields for the tournament that begins Saturday at the Lindner Family Tennis Center.

 

Additionally, nine American players have been awarded qualifying wild cards. The men’s qualifying wild card recipients are Frances Tiafoe, Ryan Harrison and Stefan Kozlov, while Vicky Duval, Taylor Townsend, Sachia Vickery, Alexa Glatch and Louisa Chirico will join Cincinnati native Nicole Gibbs with wild cards for women’s qualifying.  One more male recipient has yet to be named.

 

The two-round qualifying tournaments will be played Saturday and Sunday, with seven men and 12 women advancing into the main draw to complete the 56-player fields.

 

The men’s doubles wild cards have been awarded to a pair of American duos – Eric Butorac & Scott Lipsky and Steve Johnson & Sam Querrey. The women’s doubles wild cards will be announced later.

 

Further information on the singles wild card recipients can be found at the end of this release.

 

Several sessions for the 2015 tournament are already sold out. Recently 1,500 grounds pass tickets were put on sale for each of the day sessions from Tuesday, Aug. 18 through Friday, Aug. 21.

 

ATP Main Draw Wild Cards

Mardy Fish – 33 – Born in Edina, Minn. • 17-10 lifetime record in Cincinnati, reaching finals in 2003 (l. to Roddick) and 2010 (l. to Federer) • Has announced he will retire following the US Open • Is playing limited schedule this summer to close career after missing all of 2014 season and parts of preceding two years due to health concerns related to his heart and anxiety • Reached career high of No. 7 in 2011 • Won six career titles.

 

Rajeev Ram – 31 – Born in Carmel, Ind. • Will be making second main draw appearance in Cincinnati • Earlier this summer won title at Newport • Was his second career title • Winner of NCAA team and doubles titles at the University of Illinois in 2003 • Owns eight career ATP doubles titles.

 

Bjorn Fratangelo – 22 – Born in Pittsburgh • Advanced to quarterfinals or better at nine Challenger events in 2015, including one title • Semifinalist at the Lexington Challenger earlier this month • Won the 2011 French Open juniors title • Reached career high ranking of No. 2 as a junior.

 

Jared Donaldson – 18 – Born in Providence, R.I. • Reached quarterfinals or better at four Challengers this season, including Maui where he claimed the title.

 

WTA Main Draw Wild Cards

CoCo Vandeweghe – 23 – Born in New York City • Reached Wimbledon quarterfinal earlier this summer • Won first career title in 2014 at ‘s-Hertogenbosch • Grandfather, Ernie, and uncle, Kiki, both played in NBA • Making her second career appearance in Cincinnati.

 

Ali Riske – 25 – Born in Pittsburgh • Won her first career title last fall in Tianjin, China • Reached semifinals at two WTA events this season as well as quarterfinal last week at Stanford • Making Cincinnati main draw debut.

 

Daniela Hantuchova – 32 – Born in Poprad, Slovakia • Making eighth Cincinnati appearance, having previously reached semifinal in 2005 and two other quarterfinals • Won seventh career singles title earlier this year at Pattaya City.

 

ATP Qualifying Wild Cards

Frances Tiafoe – 17 – Born in College Park, Md. • Won USTA Boys’ 18s title earlier this month • With title earned US Open wild card • Career high junior ranking of No. 2 • Youngest player currently ranked in ATP Top 300 • Became youngest boys’ champion in Orange Bowl history in 2013.

 

Ryan Harrison – 23 – Born in Shreveport, La. • Reached seventh ATP semifinal of his career earlier this season in Acapulco • Has represented U.S. in Davis Cup • In 2008 at Houston, became 11th player in Open Era to win an ATP main draw match before 16th birthday.

 

Stefan Kozlov – 17 – Born in Skopje, Macedonia • Wimbledon and Australian Open Junior finalist in 2014 • Reached USTA Boys’ 18s final earlier this month • Career high junior ranking of No. 2 • Born in Macedonia to Russian parents • Moved to Pembroke Pines, Fla., as a toddler • Coached by his father who also runs a tennis academy.

 

WTA Qualifying Wild Cards

Vicky Duval – 19 – Born in Miami • Playing a WTA event for first time since battling Hodgkin’s lymphoma • Learned of diagnosis prior to Wimbledon in 2014, remained in tournament and reached second round • Underwent treatment and announced she was cancer free on Sept. 20 • Making return to competition this week at the ITF event in Landisville, Pa..

 

Nicole Gibbs - 22 - Born in Cincinnati • Broke into WTA Top 100 for first time last season • Won back-to-back NCAA singles titles at Stanford in 2012 and 2013.

 

Taylor Townsend – 19 – Born in Chicago • Named ITF Junior World Champion in 2012 after finishing year at No. 1 in the junior rankings • Winner of the 2012 Australian Open Juniors title at runner-up in Juniors at Wimbledon in 2013.

 

Sachia Vickery – 20 – Born in Hollywood, Fla. • Earlier this summer reached quarterfinal at WTA event in Nottingham • It was her second career quarterfinal at a WTA event.

 

Alexa Glatch – 25 – Born in Newport Beach, Calif. • Has won three ITF titles this season • Returned to action in late 2014 after missing nearly a year with injury • Reached final of US Open Juniors in 2005 (l. to Azarenka).

 

Louisa Chirico – 19 – Morristown, N.J. • Reached quarterfinals earlier this month at the WTA event in Washington, D.C. • Has reached three ITF finals this season, winning one title • Was junior semifinalist at Wimbledon and the French Open in 2013.

 

 

 

 

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