Melanie Oudin Among US Open Wildcard Recipients
The USTA announced last week the eight women who have been awarded women’s singles main draw wild card entries into the 2012 US Open Tennis Championships: Bethanie Mattek-Sands and 2009 US Open quarterfinalist Melanie Oudin, both members of the U.S. Fed Cup team, 2012 NCAA singles champion Nicole Gibbs, 2012 NCAA singles runner-up Mallory Burdette, USTA Girls’ 18s champion Victoria Duval, and Julia Cohen, along with Australia’s Casey Dellacqua and France’s Kristina Mladenovic.
The 2012 US Open will be played August 27 – September 9 at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing, N.Y. Both the men’s and women’s US Open singles champions will earn a record $1.9 million with the ability to earn an additional $1 million in bonus prize money (for a total $2.9 million potential payout) based on their performances in the Emirates Airline US Open Series. The US Open Women’s Singles Championship is presented by JPMorgan Chase.
Burdette, 21, of Jackson, Ga., earned a wild card from USTA Player Development based on her USTA Pro Circuit results this summer. This year, the USTA awarded one US Open women’s singles wild card to the American who earned the most WTA ranking points at two of three USTA Pro Circuit hard-court events. Burdette, a rising senior for Stanford, captured the 2012 NCAA doubles title with Gibbs and the 2011 title with Hilary Barte. Burdette and Gibbs also faced off in the 2012 NCAA singles final. It was the first all-Stanford final since 2001. Last month, Burdette won her first WTA match at the Emirates Airline US Open Series event in Stanford, Calif.
Cohen, 23, of Philadelphia, will play in her first-ever US Open main draw after advancing to her first career WTA Tour final in Baku, Azerbaijan, last month. Cohen earned All-America honors as a sophomore at the University of Miami (Fla.) and took home ITA Rookie of the Year honors as a freshman at the University of Florida. She has extensively competed on the USTA Pro Circuit and ITF Circuit over the last three years.
Duval, 16, of Bradenton, Fla., earned a US Open wild card by winning the USTA Girls’ 18 National Championships, knocking off five Top 10 seeds. At the 2011 US Open, she defeated the defending champion Daria Gavrilova en route to the girls’ singles quarterfinals. Duval formerly trained at the USTA Certified Regional Training Center in Atlanta, and members of the club helped save her father, a doctor in Port-au-Prince, who was injured in the 2010 earthquake in Haiti. She is currently working with USTA coach Kathy Rinaldi.
Gibbs, 19, of Manhattan Beach, Calif., won the 2012 NCAA singles and doubles titles as a sophomore at Stanford, becoming just the third woman in NCAA history to accomplish that feat. On the professional level, Gibbs qualified for and won the $50,000 USTA Pro Circuit event in Denver in her first pro event of the year. She appeared in US Open qualifying in 2010 and 2011, earning wild cards each year as USTA Girls’ 18s runner-up.
Mattek-Sands, 27, of Phoenix, Ariz., reached a career-high ranking of No. 30 in 2011, but missed the fall 2011 season with a rotator cuff injury. Mattek-Sands represented the U.S. in Fed Cup from 2009 to 2011 and helped lead the U.S. to the Fed Cup final in 2009 and 2010. She has played in 11 consecutive US Opens dating back to 2001. She has won 10 career WTA doubles titles, and this year she won the 2012 Australian Open mixed doubles title with Romanian Horia Tecau.
Oudin, 20, of Marietta, Ga., won her first career WTA title at the Wimbledon tune-up event in Birmingham this year, where she won eight matches as a qualifier. Also, she earned a 2012 USTA French Open wild card based on her results at USTA Pro Circuit events this spring. Oudin has had much success at the Open, advancing to the quarterfinals in 2009 and claiming the mixed doubles title in 2011 with Jack Sock. Oudin has been a consistent force on the U.S. Fed Cup team, playing in seven ties. She trains full-time at the USTA Training Center-East in Flushing, N.Y., at the home of the US Open.
Dellacqua, 27, of Perth, Australia, received her wild card through a reciprocal arrangement with Tennis Australia, which grants a women’s singles main draw wild card into the 2013 Australian Open to a player designated by the USTA. She achieved a career-high ranking of No. 39 in 2008, and reached the fourth round of that year’s Australian Open, her best showing at a Grand Slam event. Dellacqua won the 2011 French Open mixed doubles title and she also received a 2011 US Open wild card.
Mladenovic, 19, of Saint Pol sue Mer, France, received her wild card through a reciprocal arrangement with the French Tennis Federation, which granted a wild card into the 2012 French Open to a player designated by the USTA (Oudin earned the 2012 USTA French Open wild card through the USTA Pro Circuit tournament-based system this year). In 2009, Mladenovic won the French Open girls’ singles title and advanced to both the singles and doubles girls’ finals at Wimbledon. In turn, she became the No. 1-ranked junior in the world. Mladenovic played for France in the 2012 Olympic Games.
In addition to the US Open women’s singles main draw wild cards, the USTA also announced eight women who have been awarded wild card entries into the US Open Qualifying Tournament, which will be held August 21-24 at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. One additional US Open qualifying wild card will be awarded to the winner of the 2012 US Open National Playoffs – Women’s Championship, taking place August 17-20 in New Haven, Conn.
Players receiving 2012 US Open qualifying wild cards are: 2012 Easter Bowl singles finalist Brooke Austin (16, Indianapolis), who also represented the U.S. in Junior Fed Cup this year; 2008 Orange Bowl champion Julia Boserup (20, Boca Raton, Fla.); Gail Brodsky (21, Brooklyn, N.Y.), who trains at the USTA Training Center-East at the home of the US Open and won the 2008 USTA Girls’ 18s title; 2012 Easter Bowl and USTA Girls’ 18s doubles champion Samantha Crawford (17, Tamarac, Fla.); 2012 USTA Girls’ 18s singles runner-up and doubles champion Alexandra Kiick (17, Plantation, Fla.), the daughter of former Miami Dolphin Jim Kiick; 2010 USTA Girls’ 18s singles champion Shelby Rogers (19, Charleston, S.C.); world No. 9 junior Chalena Scholl (16, Pompano Beach, Fla.); and Ashley Weinhold (23, Spicewood, Texas), the 2007 USTA Girls’ 18s national champion.
The 2012 US Open will be held Monday, August 27, through Sunday, September 9. Tickets for the 2012 US Open can be purchased four ways: 1) at USOpen.org; 2) by calling Ticketmaster at 1-866-OPEN-TIX; 3) at all Ticketmaster outlets; or 4) at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center box office. American Express is the Official Card of the US Open.