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The UTR Pro Tennis Tour is picking up even more speed as it heads into the fall. There were 17 tournaments from August 1-29, hosted in eight cities in five different countries. Players picked up guaranteed prize money at every stop and improved their UTR Ratings while getting valuable match play.
New York City Hosts First PTT Event
New York City hosted its first PTT event, the Women’s $25K Hard 1, at SPORTIME in Randall’s Island, the same club that’s home to the John McEnroe Tennis Academy. Academy players, college stars, experienced pros, and rising juniors all competed against each other during the week with Tatiana Makarova (UTR Rating 10.83) taking the title on Sunday.
Coming back from a set and 4-1 down, Makarova beat 23-year-old recent St. John's graduate Jessica Livianu (UTR Rating 10.83), 5-7, 7-5, 6-0. Makarova won her first PTT title in her debut just before heading back to Texas A&M to start her graduate studies.
"It was really really fun," Makarova said. "And I wanted to say a big thank you for all the staff because it was crazy weather and cancellations. It was insane. With all of their effort, we managed to finish this week successfully."
The Russian-born 21-year-old has one year of eligibility left and is keeping her options open post-graduation. Inspiration wasn't far from her in New York as all week long, familiar stars like Aryna Sabalenka, Garbine Muguruza, and Feliciano Lopez practiced alongside PTT match courts to get ready for the US Open.
Winners Around the World
Over in Zdar, Croatia during the week of August 9-15, Zuzana Zlochova (UTR Rating 10.39) captured the $25K Clay 2, winning two of her Group A matches 6-0, 6-0. The 31-year-old Slovakian has been playing mostly on the ITF Pro Tour during her career but PTT has attracted her attention in 2021 as she also finished in third place in the Croatia Women’s $25K Clay 1 during the first week of August.
In Manzanillo, Mexico, Gerardo Lopez Villasenor (UTR Rating 13.33) won the Men’s $25K Hard 1 during the week of August 2-8. The 26-year-old Mexican then reached the final of the next PTT event the following week, the Hard 2 in Manzanillo, but was stopped from winning two in a row by compatriot Luis Patino (UTR Rating 10.39).
Colleges Standouts Pick Up Titles
During the week of August 16-22, University of Oklahoma graduate Jake Van Emburgh (UTR Rating 13.21) captured the Men’s $25K Hard 1 in Naples, Fla. by topping Jorge Brian Panta (UTR Rating 13.11) in the final. Van Emburgh made his PTT debut in Bradenton in June before traveling to Tunisia for a few ITF events. Naples marks his first title as a Sooner alum after finishing his career at Oklahoma in May playing mainly at the No. 1 position. Like Makarova, Van Emburgh is beginning his graduate studies this fall, though he will be playing for Ohio State University.
During the first week of August in Newport Beach, Calif., Eryn Cayetano (UTR Rating 10.87) won the eighth hard-court Women’s $25K, over Metka Komac (UTR Rating 10.21). It marks Cayetano’s second title in Newport (having won the Newport Beach Hard 6 in July). Cayetano reached the final of the Newport Beach Hard 7 as well, falling to five-time PTT champion Marcela Zacarias (UTR Rating 11.43). A University of Southern California rising junior, the 20-year-old Cayetano has played mostly PTT events this summer in preparation for her third year of college tennis.
Zacarias won her sixth PTT title, in Newport Beach, over Solymar Colling. The 27-year-old Mexican's PTT record in 2021 improves to 36-0.
"Of course, I want to keep going up, and get my ranking higher," Zacarias said. "But if I go to the U.S. and I can play some UTR PTT tournaments then I can
About the UTR Pro Tennis Tour
The PTT is open to players with a UTR Ranking of 200-2000, and wild cards can be awarded to those players with a UTR Ranking of 1-199 or above 2000. Every PTT event creates matchplay opportunities for up-and-coming, collegiate, and pro players thanks to a unique round-robin format. At every event, a group round-robin stage is followed by a World Cup-style playoff, guaranteeing multiple matches and counting all results towards the UTR Rating, the most accurate rating system in tennis. Every PTT event offers 4-5 matches and a minimum of $20,000 in prize money with an earnings guarantee for every participant.
For more information about UTR PTT and to see all of the results, click here.