[editor’s note: I’m very lucky to have a guest contributor who will be attending the USTA AO Wildcard Playoff this weekend; you may know our guest author as Stephiesport on twitter. She’ll be providing reports from her on-site experiences all weekend. I’ll also be setting up a special, additional column so we can see her twitter feed here on the front page of the site. Give Stephie a warm welcome, won’t you?]

I’m getting very excited about the Australian Open Wildcard Playoffs, starting in just a couple of days here in Atlanta at the Racquet Club of the South!  I am particularly pumped up about the eight men who will be competing for that highly coveted spot to make it into the main draw in 2011.  Ryan Harrison showed us all what he’s made of at the US Open this year, beating Ljubicic and then taking Stakhovsky to a 5th set tie break that had everyone on the edge of their seats, including me!  Another man to watch is Rhyne Williams, a Sophomore at the University of Tennessee, who just recently won the USTA/ITA Intercollegiate Championship in New York. The other 6 spectacular players will be Denis Kudla, Donald Young, Jack Sock, Tim Smyczek, Jordan Cox and Michael Shabaz from UVA.

We must also not forget the 8 women who will be competing as well, but I must honestly tell you that I am not as familiar with the ladies this year.  Since my favorite female player, Serena, has been out with injuries for the past few months, I have been somewhat, how should I say this…  uninterested, for lack of a better word, in the WTA;  However my love for the sport of tennis will drive me to become more acquainted with them and their games I can assure you!

I am very much looking forward to seeing Coco Vandeweghe play since I missed her compete in the Fed Cup just a few weeks ago.  You can also get more details on all the players and the AO WC event at this site http://www.australianwildcard.com/

Please stay tuned as I will be on-site giving you up-to-date happenings at the play-offs.  You can also follow me twitter at Stephiesport.  Ciao!

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