November 24th, 2015

Tennis Briefs(3): Rubin Wins WC, Anisimova Profile, Chris Evert Charity

Youth Tennis News USTA Pro Circuit

Jr. Tennis Profile: Amanda Anisimova of Hallandale Beach

AnisimovaUSTAFLFew junior tennis players win their first title at the International Tennis Federation’s highest level, but Hallandale Beach’s Amanda Anisimova did just that last week in Mexico City.

The unseeded 14-year-old picked up the winner’s trophy by beating No. 3 seed Katie Swan of Great Britain 7-5, 3-6, 6-3 in the final of the Grade A Abierto Juvenil Mexicano. Anisimova, ranked No. 368 to Swan’s No. 6, defeated two other seeds en route to the final, with the only set she lost in her six victories coming in the championship match.

Swan, a 16-year-old who reached the Australian Open girls final in January, had beaten Anisimova 6-2, 6-3 at the Easter Bowl in April.

Anisimova won five straight games after falling behind 5-2 in the opening set, and in the third set she came back from 0-2 to win five straight games again before closing out Swan. She is the first girl born in 2001 to win an ITF Grade A event.

After accepting the trophy, the ITF award, and the sombrero that goes to the finalists of the tournament, Anisimova thanked the organizers of the event, which she was playing for the first time.

“This is probably one of the best tournaments I’ve played,” Anisimova said in the on-court interview. “It was really fun and I enjoyed playing here and all the support was just great.”

Anisimova, coached by Konstantin Anisimov and the USTA’s Richard Ashby and Kathy Rinaldi, was one of three girls who made up the USA’s 14-and-under team for the ITF’s World Junior Tennis competition in August. Anisimova, Tyra Hurricane Black and Caty McNally advanced to the final of the 16-team event, finishing second to Russia. Later that month, Anisimova reached the quarterfinals of an ITF Grade 1 tournament in Maryland, then qualified for the US Open in September, her first appearance in a junior slam.

She hopes to make her second slam appearance in Australia in 2016, after playing the Eddie Herr in Bradenton and the Metropolia Orange Bowl in Plantation next month.

Rubin Joins Florida’s Crawford as Australian Open Wild Card Winners

2014 Wimbledon boys' champ Noah Rubin and runner-up Stefan Kozlov of Florida

2014 Wimbledon boys’ champ Noah Rubin and runner-up Stefan Kozlov of Florida

Noah Rubin, 19, of Long Island, N.Y., earned a spot in the main draw of the Australian Open for the first time after clinching the men’s USTA Pro Circuit Australian Open Wild Card Challenge this week. Rubin clinched the wild card when fellow young American Taylor Fritz, the only player who could pass him in the wild card challenge standings, lost in the final of the $50,000 USTA Pro Circuit Challenger in Champaign, Ill.

Rubin earned 80 points in the wild card challenge by winning the $50,000 Challenger in Charlottesville, Va., earlier this month, his first USTA Pro Circuit singles title.

Currently ranked No. 339 in the world, Rubin earned a wild card into the 2014 US Open as the 2014 USTA Boys’ 18s singles champion, his only other Grand Slam main draw appearance.

Rubin completed a standout freshman campaign at Wake Forest this May, advancing to the 2015 NCAA singles final. He also became the first player in ACC men’s tennis history to earn ACC Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year honors in one season, as well as the first ACC men’s tennis Player of the Year in Wake Forest men’s tennis history. He was also the ITA Rookie of the Year and earned All-America honors.

Rubin has since turned pro, making his Grand Slam men’s singles debut at the US Open as a wild card.

He joined 20-year-old Samantha Crawford of Tamarac, Fla., who earned the women’s wild card earlier this month. Crawford, who also earned a wild card into the 2015 US Open by winning the USTA Pro Circuit’s US Open Wild Card Challenge, secured the Australian Open berth by winning the $50,000 Copperwynd Pro Women’s Challenge in Scottsdale, Ariz., her first career singles professional title.

Final standings and information about the wild card challenge can be found at

Chris Evert Charity Pro-Celebrity Event Raises $600K

evert charityThe 26th annual Chris Evert/Raymond James Pro-Celebrity Tennis Classic wrapped up a successful weekend by raising $600,000 for its ongoing campaign against drug abuse and child neglect. The monies go toward programs that are funded through the Ounce of Prevention Fund of Florida and through the Drug Abuse Foundation of Palm Beach County.

The latest fundraising totals push the 26-year total over the $22 million mark. The weekend’s events included a Pro-Am, a Charity Gala and two days of Pro-Celebrity Tennis. Included in the $600,000 was the $110,000 raised on Saturday evening at the Charity Gala’s Silent and Live Auctions at the Boca Raton Resort & Club.

Asha Davis of Orlando became the 40th young woman to be awarded the Vitas Gerulaitis Memorial Scholarship by Chris Evert Charities on Saturday during Evert’s annual charity event. The scholarship recipients are women who have participated in social service programs offered by the Ounce of Prevention Fund of Florida.

Davis is currently finishing her AA degree at Valencia College and hopes to attend the University of Florida and major in sociology. The Chris Evert Charities scholarship program began in 1995 and honors the late Gerulaitis, a friend of Evert’s who was ranked in the ATP Top 10 for seven straight years until 1983.

Since 1989, Chris Evert Charities has raised more than $22 million in an ongoing campaign to provide a bright future for Florida’s most at-risk children. For more information visit