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Second- and third-stringers eye 2016 if front-runner stumbles
Topic - Irina Falconi
At one end of the William H.G. FitzGerald Tennis Center on Wednesday night, American Coco Vandeweghe served Aravane Rezai of France into submission. At the other, countrywoman Vania King experienced similar success. Their victories give the United States three quarterfinalists entering Thursday's action at the Citi Open.
American Irina Falconi followed up her first win at a Grand Slam tournament with a second, upsetting 14th-seeded Dominika Cibulkova on Wednesday to reach the third round of the U.S. Open.
As the sun set over College Park on Saturday evening, 102nd-ranked Irina Falconi appeared poised to shake up the Citi Open. The last American remaining in the field had just cruised past 32nd-ranked Nadia Petrova to earn a 6-1 first-set victory, leaving her hulking Russian opponent muttering curses under her breath.
"I'm kind of sad and I'm disappointed that Venus had to pull out," said Irina Falconi, a 21-year-old American who defeated No. 14 Dominika Cibulkova. "But I hope it gets better, for what it's worth."
"There's a tremendous amount of positives [from this tournament]," Falconi said. "I'm top-80 after this tournament, it was my first semifinal, and there's just been so much progress that my team and I have made. We're going to use so much of what happened this week for the rest of my career."