BritWatch is our regular Friday piece introducing where each of our British players is playing in the upcoming week, whether it be on the ATP/WTA tours, the ITF Futures circuit, or further down at national, junior and collegiate level.
Week 23 – 6th – 13th June 2016
With the pinnacle of the clay court season – Roland Garros – one match away from being over (come on Andy!), the grass court season is beginning to fully get underway, with a WTA International event in Nottingham and another ATP Challenger in Surbiton this week. Not all the Brits are sticking to the home soil at the moment, though…
ATP World Tour
Aljaz Bedene isn’t heading back to the UK for his Wimbledon preparation just yet, although he is shifting over to the grass: he’s entered into the main draw of the ATP 250 in the Netherlands this week, and will be in the main draw. Elsewhere, James Ward flies out of the UK following a quarter-final appearance in Manchester last week to take on qualifying for the ATP 250 in Stuttgart, Germany. He’s already won his first match.
ATP Challenger Tour
As expected, several Brits remain in the UK and head south to the €42.5k event in Surbiton, just outside of London, forgoing all other Challenger events on offer – and there are many. The draw is weaker than last week’s event in Manchester, hence Dan Evans is the top seed, and will be hoping to do better than his first round exit last week. Brydan Klein is also entered directly, while, as last week, Lloyd Glasspool, Alex Ward and Liam Broady secure wildcards, with Ed Corrie also getting one this week having successfully come through qualifying and won a match last week. In qualifying,
we have seeds Joshua Milton , Dan Smethurst  and Luke Bambridge , as well as Neil Pauffley, Joe Salisbury, Alexis Canter and Jonny O’Mara, while youngsters Marcus Walters, Alastair Gray, Max Benaim and Jack Molloy pick up wildcards.
Not huge action at $25k level, but plenty further down: Aswin Lizen, who is seeded sixth, and Daniel Manlow take on qualifying in Charlottesville, USA. At $10k level, Keelan Oakley makes the main draw in Bulgaria, while Robbie Ridout, who should be seeded, and Jonathan Gray are in qualifying over in Hong Kong. Toby Martin is in qualifying in Italy, while at the first Futures event in Mozambique this year, three Brits are in qualifying: third seed Samuel Ferguson, Joe Cooper and Patrick Foley. Luke Oakley takes on qualifying in Poland, while in Romania, Max Andrews and Mehdi Naqvi are in action, also in qualifying. The majority of the British interest once again comes in Turkey, where Scott Clayton is in the main draw and has seven Brits attempting to join him: Joshua Paris, Sizya Kivanda, Scott Duncan, Nicholas Nugent, Kenichiro Oishi, Daniel Gunn and Luke Simkiss.
There’s very little to choose from at junior level right now, with many events still opting for the clay court surfaces rather than heading onto grass, failing to provide much preparation for the junior slam around the corner. At Grade 2 level in Poland, Max Stewart is in the clay court main draw, while Adam Jones, Jeremy Gschwendtner and Max Benaim (presumably after his qualifying attempts in Surbiton) are in qualifying. At the Grade 4 in El Salvador, George Davis is in the main draw.
There is a big chance for some of our top females to impress on home soil this week at the WTA International event in Nottingham, and there’s even some smaller British names trying their hand at qualifying before dropping down to Surbiton later in the week. Johanna Konta is seeded second, while Heather Watson is sixth seed. They are joined by direct entrant Naomi Broady and two British wildcards: Laura Robson and young Freya Christie. In qualifying, there’s Lisa Whybourn, Katie Boulter, Tara Moore and wildcard Eden Silva, who will return to the WTA Rankings as a result, even if she loses her first round encounter.
Of course, the big event this week is in Surbiton – the $50k – which has no Brits directly entered into the main draw, but it looks like Gabriella Taylor and Harriet Dart have picked up main draw wildcards. but plenty of qualifying opportunities for established WTA-ranked players and young hopefuls alike: Emily Webley-Smith is top seed in qualifying, with Emily Arbuthnott fourth, Lucy Brown seventh and Beth Grey eighth. Also in action are Holly Hutchinson, Kasia and Ola Pitak (the latter of which gained a wildcard into qualifying), Alisha Reayer, Ceire Mullins, Holly Horsfall, Lisa Phillips, Dominique Covington, Louise Holtum, Lauren McMinn, Katarina Weymouth, Elise van Heuvelen, Gemma Heath, Lauren Harrington, Lily Ghodrati and Emma Hurst. Picking up qualifying wildcards are Lauren Bishop, Tiffany William, Thalia Martin, Natalie Hepburn and Georgina Axon.
Elsewhere on the ITF circuit, not much to take stock of: Laura Deigman is in the main draw of the $10k in Israel, while young Ali Collins is in qualifying for the $10k in Poland – we wish her luck. Laura Sainsbury is once again in qualifying in Spain and could be on the cusp of the WTA Ranking should she come through the main draw, while in Turkey, main draw entrants Mirabelle Njoze, Francesca Stephenson and Jazzamay Drew are joined by qualifying hopefuls Francesca Wilkes, Suzy Larkin and Julie Ball.
Very little to report: Camille Verden Anderson flies over to Poland for the Grade 2; she’s in qualifying. That’s all folks!