The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Sports

July 19, 2012

Yuri Bezeruk advances in singles, doubles in Futures tournament at Millennium

Yuri Bezeruk is making the most of his visit to Joplin.

Bezeruk, from Adelaide, Australia, advanced to the quarterfinals by defeating Dekel Bar, 7-6 (5), 6-1 Thursday in the USTA Freeman $10,000 Men’s Futures.

Then, in the last match of the day, he and Darian King moved into the doubles final with a 6-2, 6-4 victory against Gonzales Austin and Ryan Lipman.

When he walked into Millennium Tennis and Fitness Club afterward, he took a bath towel out of his sports bag and wiped off the sweat.

“They kept at it, but I guess we held our nerves at the end,” he said. “We’re happy with the result.”

This week’s tournament is Bezeruk’s fifth in the U.S. He said he played in two tournaments in Florida, one in Pittsburgh, Pa. and one in Rochester, N.Y. before he came to Joplin.

“In our summer, we don’t get the humidity that’s here at the moment,” said Bezeruk, whose hometown of 1.2 million people is on the southern coast of Australia. “We had a big climate change in Australia. We had the longest drought in history then lots of flash flooding the last two years. Tens of thousands lost their homes.

“This is my first time in Joplin. It has been a good experience so far,” he said. “Hopefully, I can keep the row going.”

Bezeruk, who is seeded sixth, will face his doubles teammate in today’s quarterfinals. King is seeded fourth.

The other quarterfinal matchups are Costin Paval against third-seeded Sebastien Boltz, Dane Webb against Gonzales Austin and top-seeded Sanam Singh against Kyle McMorrow.

Singh advanced by defeating Eric Quigley, 6-2, 7-6 (5) in a matchup that Singh said afterward he was concerned about.

“He’s really good. He was always top five, top 10 in college,” Singh said. “He’s a powerful player. I had to be really solid. I’m happy to be sitting here with the win right now. He beat me a couple of times in college.”

Quigley, a recent graduate of the University of Kentucky, said he remembered their previous encounters when Singh played at the University of Virginia.

“I think we met up three or four times,” he said. “Today, he played great. I hit some shots that I thought were good shots and he just moved really well. I thought that was the key to the match.

“This is one of my first tournaments,” he said. “I’m just getting into it and hopefully I’ll keep improving in every aspect and see where it takes me.”

In the doubles final scheduled for 6 p.m. today, Bezeruk and King, seeded No. 2, will face top-seeded Harrison Adams and Shane Vinsant.

Adams and Vinsant won a tiebreaker for the second match in a row with a 6-2, 3-6 (10-4) victory against Quigley and Kyle McMorrow.

“Whenever your realize every single point is important, you have to focus on your first serve,” said Adams, who has one semester remaining in high school near Austin, then will play at the University of Texas. “It’s not like a game where it’s four points and it’s over.”

Vinsant was defeated in his second-round singles match by Boltz, 6-3, 6-2, then stretched and practiced with his partner before their doubles match.

“He (Vinsant) said he was feeling a little tired, but we feed off each other and we got the adrenaline going a little bit,” Adams said.

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