2020 Mercer Tennis Classic Qualifying Underway
Volynets Ousts Bouchard, Main Draw Set
MERCER UNIVERSITY and John Drew Smith Tennis Center – OCT 19 – OCT 25, 2020
USTA Pro Circuit 80K Event
MACON, Georgia, (October 20, 2020) Mercer Tennis Classic singles qualifying play wrapped up Tuesday afternoon as eight players moved into the singles main draw. spread over four courts at the John Drew Smith Tennis Center.
The Mercer Tennis Classic is the first USTA Pro Circuit event being held in the U.S. since professional tennis came to a halt in March.
Canada’s Genie Bouchard was again the showcase match on the Stadium Court facing off against young American Katie Volynets. Bouchard had an impressive straight set win on Monday over Alexa Glatch, but Tuesday would be different. Bouchard jumped out to a quick lead, but Volynets showed poise and took Bouchard’s power and returned it with some impressive shotmaking. The Canadian showed frustration at the end of the first set and it continued into the second falling behind 3-0 before retiring with an injury.
“She had a fast start,” commented Eric Hayes, tournament director on Bouchard. “But credit Volynets for taking what Bouchard was giving her and in turn dictating play.”
Former Macon champ, Kayla Day, playing on a wildcard also fell in her second qualifying match. 6-3, 6-2, to Maria Serrano Osorio of Colombia. .
Another former Macon champ, Varvara Lepchenko won her qualifying match and enters the main draw.
First round doubles action began on Tuesday with the top-seeded team of Caroline Dolehide and Caty McNally advancing.
Main draw singles starts on Wednesday.
Varvara LEPCHENKO (USA) def  Mayo HIBI (JPN)  6-3 6-2
Renata ZARAZUA (MEX)  def Asia MUHAMMAD (USA)  7-6(2) 6-3
Magdalena FRECH (POL)  def Claire LIU (USA) 4-6 6-2 [10-5]
Katie VOLYNETS (USA) def Eugenie BOUCHARD (CAN)  6-4 3-0 Ret.
Maria Camila OSORIO SERRANO (COL)  def Kayla DAY (USA) 6-3 6-2
Tessah ANDRIANJAFITRIMO (FRA) def Clara TAUSON (DEN)  7-5 6-7(5) [10-8]
Ingrid NEEL (USA) / Caitlin WHORISKEY (USA) def Kateryna BONDARENKO (UKR) / Olga GOVO7R-5TS1O-6VA[1(0B-L7R])
Caroline DOLEHIDE (USA) / Caty MCNALLY (USA)  def Hailey BAPTISTE (USA) / Whitney OSUIGWE6-(3US6A-1)
Veronica CEPEDE ROYG (PAR)  def Marie BENOIT (BEL)  6-4 6-7(4) [10-7]
Gabriela TALABA (ROU)  def Ankita RAINA (IND)  6-0 6-0
The women’s event will feature a 32-player singles qualifying draw, a 32-player singles main draw and a 16-team doubles draw. Now in its eighth year and fourth year as an W80 event, the Mercer Tennis Classic will once again feature many of the best women tennis players in the world. It is the second biggest professional tournament in the state of Georgia in terms of prize money (ATP World Tour 250 event – BB&T Atlanta Open in July, is the largest). It is also the longest running professional women’s tennis tournament in the state of Georgia. The 2019 event was showcased on the Tennis Channel.
The Mercer Tennis Classic has featured players with major titles, including 2014 Macon singles champ, Kateryna Bondarenko, of Ukraine, and her sister, Alona, who she teamed with to win the 2008 Australian Open Doubles title, and 2010 French Open singles champion Francesca Schiavone, of Italy, who was the tournament’s top seed in 2018.
The event will adhere to all government-mandated COVID-19 restrictions, including social-distancing, throughout the duration of the tournament.
Tournament volunteers are needed and any help is always appreciated. Call Mercer tennis coach and tournament director Eric Hayes at (478) 301-2269