Happy new year, tennis players and sport enthusiasts! While you may be just dusting off your racquets after the off-season finally comes to a close, or you’ve been practicing all this time, we’re excited for ATP and WTA events to begin in 2023 especially Down Under!
At the Adelaide International event, Volkl players and former USC NCAA champs Kaitlyn Christian and Sabrina Santamaria won their opening round against Australians Hon and Birrell 6-3, 6-4 and will play later on today for a berth into the quarterfinals against French Open champ Ostapenko and her partner Kichenok.
In team competition on the east side of the country in Sydney, Hunter Reese is kicking off the year in the best way possible, representing the United States in competition at the inaugural United Cup. A doubles specialist and former NCAA champ ranked inside the ATP tour’s top 100, Reese is on the winning team USA squad featuring Madison Keys, Jessica Pegula and top-ranked American Taylor Fritz as well as US Open semi-finalist Frances Tiafoe, among others. The tournament comprises group play matches with 18 countries being represented throughout the team event; it started on December 28, and will take place through January 8 (a lead-up to this year’s Australian Open in Melbourne). The US has defeated the Czech Republic and Germany so far in the event’s “Group C”, which is exclusively hosted in Sydney while other groups play in different cities. Next up for the States is Great Britain!
Meanwhile in other parts of the world, Miguel-Reyes Varela began his season with an epic win alongside Ramanathan at the Chennai Open over Bopanna and van de Zandschulp. Varela and his partner for the tournament won their opening round 7-6, 6-7, 11-9; next up in the quarterfinal round are the tournament’s top-seeded team of Ram and Salisbury. And in Tunisia, 20-year-old Anastasia Zolotareva (ranked around 250 in the world and approaching another career-high ranking) played her first match of 2023 against Radivojevic as the fourth seed, but succumbed in three tight sets.
Also happy birthday to Oleksandra Oliynykova, who just celebrated her 22nd birthday on-court in a practice session while using her brand new gear!
Let the Volkl games begin!