Tag Archive: Mark Verryth

As anticipated, it was a scorching day of qualifying action Saturday at the Tallahassee Challenger, both on and off the courts. The temperature was predicted to reach a near-record 92 degrees, and it did not let us down. Nor did it let up, once the sun broke through the muggy morning clouds. This led to some heated tennis action on the DecoTurf as well as some heated exchanges off of it.

While the clouds still blanketed the ground in some sort of meteorological mercy, I started out beside Court 14 at the Forestmeadows Tennis Complex – a court which, despite its name, is really more like a grandstand/show court. It was there that 19-year-old Australian Mark Verryth, the former world junior #23 and 2009 Eddie Herr International doubles champ (with partner Harry Fowler), kicked off his long day, playing 22-year-old Macon, Georgia wild card Deo-Ray Brown.

Call It In The Air Like You Just Don’t Care

From the outset, it was clear that Brown was overmatched by the 6 foot 6 inch man from Melbourne (Australia, not Florida), as Verryth hammered home 11 aces and never faced a break point the entire match. Though he only put 50 percent of his first serves in, his kicking second delivery had Brown off balance throughout.

To his credit, Brown got more of a read on the Aussie’s serve toward the end, framing some short replies and delaying the point for at least one more shot, as Verryth supplemented his service profile with some blistering forehands.

But the match was over before 60 Minutes would’ve gotten to Andy Rooney. It wasn’t the most flawless performance (5 double faults, a number of unforced errors, and repeated self-admonishments that his serve was “too short”), but it didn’t need to be. It was still impressive enough that ball kids lined up for autographs afterwards.

And it was good that he conserved his energy, as the big man from the land Down Under would go on to play a 2 hour QR2 match in the midday sun, upsetting qualifying fifth seed Woong-Sun Jun 6-7(3) 7-6(5) 6-3. I didn’t get to see that one – as I can only be in so many places at once, you see – but I hoped to check out at least some of his final qualifying match against another Korean, Daniel Yoo. (Thank yoo verryth much.)

For the next match, I was intrigued to see how Devin Britton was doing these days, as the young American’s been struggling since he made his big splash against some dude named Federer in the 2009 US Open (losing twice as many matches as he’s won since that day). DevBritt came out a bit disheveled (TM Brad Gilbert) and never seemed quite at ease against his 23-year-old formerly Greek (now American) opponent, Vlademyros Mavropoulos-Stoliarenko (a spirited guy whom I unfortunately could not tweet about by name, as his name alone accounts for half a tweet as it is).

For his part, Stoliarenko (as the chair ump called him) came out guns blazing, breaking Britton at 15 with an inside-in forehand and a blistering forehand return winner up the line for an early 2-0 advantage.

Of course, he immediately was broken back to love, thanks to a double fault, a grunty drop shot wide, and a couple of D.Britted forehand winners. And that’s about how the whole first set went. Five breaks of service in all, with VMS getting the last of them for a 6-4 first set victory. Britton’s reviews of various parts of the first set: “That is so bad. So bad.” And “that’s embarrassing!” Can’t say as I disagree, especially since Devin missed a few fairly easy volleys, and his net play is supposed to be the strength of his game.

After the set, I overhear an awesome conversation between ballkids about their chosen craft. Highlight: “If it’s coming right at us, can we move or do we just have to wear it?” “You can move.” “OK, but are we allowed to wear it? I wanna leave with a battle bruise.”

Heh. Tough kid.

Meanwhile, back to the bruising battle on court: the second frame found Britton landing all the punches. And Stoliarenko sufferered from a few self-inflicted blows, to add to the punishment. For instance, when he smacked a groundie long down break point in the first game. Or threw in his only double fault of the set to help the Britton to a double break lead.

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This will be an open thread where anyone and everyone can come and comment on the day’s action as it progresses.  Here’s today’s Order Of Play:

Melbourne Park – Crt 5
   1. Starting at 10:00 AM AO Wildcard Playoff 2011 – Main Draw
Dane Propoggia
Andrew Whittington
   2. Followed by AO Wildcard Playoff 2011 – Magenta Group (C)
Ashleigh Barty
Tammi Patterson [6]
   3. Followed by AO Wildcard Playoff 2011 – Main Draw
Adam Feeney
Colin Ebelthite
   4. Followed by AO Wildcard Playoff 2011 – Yellow Group (D)
Belinda Woolcock
Olivia Rogowska [5]
Melbourne Park – Crt 7
   1. Starting at 10:00 AM AO Wildcard Playoff 2011 – Main Draw
Maverick Banes
Benjamin Mitchell
   2. Followed by AO Wildcard Playoff 2011 – Main Draw
Joel Lindner
Luke Saville
   3. Followed by AO Wildcard Playoff 2011 – Main Draw
James Duckworth
Matthew Barton
   4. Followed by AO Wildcard Playoff 2011 – Yellow Group (D)
Jessica Moore [4]
Azra Hadzic
Melbourne Park – Crt 8
   1. Starting at 10:00 AM AO Wildcard Playoff 2011 – Blue Group (A)
Alicia Molik [1]
Jade Hopper
   2. Followed by AO Wildcard Playoff 2011 – Magenta Group (C)
Jelena Dokic [3]
Viktorija Rajicic
   3. Followed by AO Wildcard Playoff 2011 – Green Group (B)
Sophie Ferguson [2]
Monika Wejnert
   4. Followed by AO Wildcard Playoff 2011 – Main Draw
Sean Berman
Jason Kubler
Melbourne Park – Crt 10
   1. Starting at 10:00 AM AO Wildcard Playoff 2011 – Blue Group (A)
Alison Bai
Sophie Letcher [7]
   2. Followed by AO Wildcard Playoff 2011 – Main Draw
Mark Verryth
Jared Easton
   3. Followed by AO Wildcard Playoff 2011 – Green Group (B)
Ashling Sumner
Isabella Holland [8]
   4. Followed by AO Wildcard Playoff 2011 – Main Draw
Matt Reid
Michael Look

Let’s take a closer look at the men’s matchups here:

Dane Propoggia vs. Andrew Whittington: this is the first meeting between the 20-year-old Propoggia, ranked #616 in the world, and the 17 year-old Whittington, who has yet to earn an ATP point and is thus unranked. Whittington is the #35 Junior in the world rankings, and 4th in Australia behind James Duckworth, Ben Mitchell and Ben Wagland.  Propoggia is 19-22 on the pro tour this year, while Whittington is 0-4.

Maverick Banes vs. Ben Mitchell: This should be a good matchup between two scrappy 18 year olds.  Banes won their only previous meeting 63 36 62 in August on clay at the Spain F28 Futures.  Mitchell, though, is coming in on a heavy roll, having reached the final of Australia F13 two weeks ago, losing a close match to Sam Groth.  Mitchell is 25-20 on the pro tour this year, while Banes is 5-9. I’d expect Mitchell to avenge his earlier loss this year, but it might be a tight one.

Joel Lindner vs. Luke Saville: Lindner, the 648th-ranked 21 year old, won the only previous meeting between these two 63 64 just a few weeks ago at Australia F12.  But the 16 year old Saville is a real talent, and is improving at what seems an exponential rate.  I expect the lefty Lindner to go through, but I wouldn’t be shocked if Luke got the upset either.

Mark Verryth vs. Jared Easton: The 19 y/o Verryth, ranked #610 in the world, and the 20 y/0 730th ranked Easton have never met on the pro level.  The hard-serving Verryth has just returned from a successful trip to Mexico, which he capped off by winning the F11 Futures event there.  He’s 23-16 on the season.  Easton, meanwhile, has had a rough ride of it, going 9-20 for 2010.  Look for Verryth to come through here.

Adam Feeney vs. Colin Ebelthite: Shockingly, this will be the 10th meeting between the 25 year old Feeney and the 26 year old Ebelthite. Colin, ranked #386 in the world, leads Adam 6-3 so far. The 601st-ranked Feeney once held the edge 3-2 in their rivalry, but Ebelthite’s won the last four.

James Duckworth vs. Matthew Barton: The two 18 year olds have never met at pro level (heck, they’ve hardly played at pro level) or a junior level. Duckworth comes in the hot hand, having had match points before going down to Sean Berman in the Optus 18’s final. In addition to being the top-ranked Aussie junior, Duckworth’s also gone 22-15 in first semi-full year on the pro tour, achieving an ATP ranking of 755. Barton hasn’t had quite that level of success, going 12-12 and attaining a ranking of 898.  Odds are Ducky gets through this one.

Sean Berman vs. Jason Kubler: Speaking of Sean…  wow, what a matchup!  The only men’s match that is streamed today.  This is a tough draw for both guys, who are the 38th and 75th ranked juniors, respectively.  Kubler, of course, was once the top ranked junior in the world but is now transitioning to the pros.  Berman won their only previous meeting 64 62 in the third round of this years Oz Open Juniors.  Kubes went 24-17 on the pro tour and achieved a ranking of 535 in the world, while Berman went 12-10 and is at #863.  As far as I’m concerned (and I’m concerned pretty far), this is a toss-up between the two seventeen year-olds.

Matt Reid vs. Michael Look:  The #436th-ranked Reid, 20, leads the head to head 2-0 over the 23 year-old Look, though it took three sets in their most recent meeting in October. Eh, we’ll see how it goes.

So that’s way more than you probably needed to know about today’s action. Ah well.  Feel free to talk about the ongoing matches (or anything else) in the comment section below.

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