Fatigued Wild falls flat in TeamTennis home opener

Posted Tuesday, Jul. 08, 2014  comments  Print Reprints
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Last year the Texas Wild snapped the Washington Kastles’ 34-match winning streak in the Wild’s home opener, but the Wild couldn’t repeat the result Tuesday for its second home opener in Las Colinas against the three-time defending World TeamTennis champion.

Washington got off to a fast, and despite the Wild staying close until the fourth set, Washington took control with a 5-1 victory in women’s doubles to open a 19-12 lead. The Kastles held on in the final set of men’s doubles to seal a 24-15 victory.

The loss was the first of the season for the Wild, which opened with two victories on the road, at Boston and at Springfield. Washington evened its season record at 1-1.

It was the Wild’s third match in three nights and the fatigue was starting to show.

“Looking at the schedule, I had this penciled in as a difficult night because of the travel,” Wild owner Jeff Launius said. “On the road two nights and Springfield [Mo.] is not an easy place to get to, so we were up at 4:45. We played hard, but I think we were just fatigued.

“If you had seen the first two matches, you would have seen the difference. Just a little jet lag.”

Washington’s Bobby Reynolds picked up a 5-2 victory over Alex Bogomolov in men’s singles, despite some competitive play by Bogomolov, who hit the hardcourt once in the first game of the night and twice on one point later in the set.

Bogomolov was treated on the court by a trainer three times for scrapes.

Texas stayed close in the middle sets with Anabel Medina Garrigues pulling out a narrow 5-4 victory over Jarka Gajdosova by winning a tiebreaker. Leander Paes and Gajdosova then slipped by Garrigues and Aisam Qureshi 5-4 in a tiebreaker.

“This team has some fight in it,” Launius said. “I think you saw that with Boggie and Qureshi, and with Anabel Medina coming back to win the women’s singles. In all honesty, this team has more heart than any team I’ve seen. They claw, they fight, they don’t stop.”

But Washington stretched its lead in the fourth set, with a 5-1 victory by Gajdosova and Anastasia Rodoinova cruising past Garrigues and Darija Jurak, 5-1.

Launius said he was pleased with the turnout, despite some empty seats.

“Opening up on a Tuesday night is a bit of a difficult night,” he said. “But we had 1,113 people here so we’ll take that on a Tuesday night. I think Friday night will be better. We’ll have Ladies Night promotion and we’ll have fun and play the Philadelphia Freedom.”

In other action, Austin bounced back from a season-opening loss Monday night with a 19-17 victory over Springfield. San Diego was playing Philadelphia late on the West Coast.

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