Eighteen-year-old Ethan Quinn of Fresno, Calif., and a redshirt freshman at the University of Georgia, will face 30-year-old former Florida Gator standout Sekou Bangoura of Bradenton, Fla., in Sunday’s not-before-2 pm singles final of the $15,000 Mardy Fish Children’s Foundation Tennis Championships USTA Pro Circuit ITF World Tennis Tour.
Quinn, a wild-card entry into the event with an ATP ranking of No. 1085, defeated No. 2 seed and world No. 581 John McNally 6-3, 6-7 (5), 6-3 in Saturday’s semifinals. Bangoura, a singles and doubles runner-up at this event in 2019, defeated top-seed Liam Draxl of Canada 6-2, 6-4 in the early semifinal.
Quinn served for the match at 5-4 in the second set but double-faulted when holding match point, only to have his serve broken. At 5-5 in the second-set tiebreaker, Quinn threw in another double fault, while McNally, the former Ohio State standout and older brother of WTA doubles star Caty McNally, took advantage of the nerves to force a third-set on the next point. Quinn, however, recalibrated for the third set and closed out the match with a rocket serve and his sling shot forehand.
Watch Quinn’s match point here on YouTube: https://youtu.be/vtZi77uc4mU
Watch Quinn’s post-match interview with Randy Walker here: https://youtu.be/IvW3Fl1a4jg where he also discusses his camaraderie this week with doubles partner Nico Godsick and Godsick’s mom, Mary Joe Fernandez, the former two-time Olympic gold medalist as well as U.S. Fed Cup captain and U.S. Olympic tennis coach.
Play will start Sunday at 1 pm with the doubles final, featuring the wild card team of 29-year-old Ricardo Rodriguez of Venezuela and 16-year-old Nishesh Basavareddy of Carmel, Indiana facing the University of Kentucky duo of Draxl and Millen Hurrion of Great Britain.
The post-match on-court interview with Rodriguez and Basavareddy can be found here where Rodriguez talks about reaching his third career final in Vero Beach and his around-the-post shot in the semifinal, while Basavareddy talks about his mentorship from fellow Carmel, Indiana tennis player Rajeev Ram here: https://youtu.be/OuxnOxkWWrk
Read Harvey Fialkov’s story on Rodriguez and Basavareddy here: https://sports.yahoo.com/rodriguez-feels-home-veros-mardy-210019384.html
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