Former world number one Lleyton Hewitt and former world number two Tommy Haas lead the way in wild card entries for next week’s Citi Open in Washington D.C. This will be Hewitt’s first tournament since the Davis Cup tie - Kazakhstan. In that tie, he was a part of two vital rubbers which led the Aussies from 0-2 deficit. He won the doubles tie with Sam Groth to extend it into the reverse singles rubbers and clinched the match with a victory over Aleksandr Nedovyesov to send them to the semifinals against Great Britain.
Haas, who was injured for most of last year due to shoulder surgery, finally returned to the courts in Stuttgart. He continued his play in Halle and played at Wimbledon and Newport. The German is currently ranked outside the world’s top 500 so he is using wildcards or a protected ranking to try and work his way up again during the twilight of his career.
After injuries hampered his 2010-11 season, he roared back the next few years to win the ATP Comeback Player of the Year as well as getting as high as 11 in the rankings, not bad for someone in their mid-30s.
Two youngsters get wildcard entries
Denis Kudla is the lone American to get a wildcard entry to the Citi Open. Talk about taking your chance as a Challenger title earned him a wildcard into Wimbledon where he made it to the fourth round. He lost to US Open champion Marin Cilic in four sets. He just upset Jack Sock at the BB&T Atlanta Open as his ranking continues to soar back into the top 100. Kudla was originally in the qualifying draw before he was given the wildcard.
Chilean Nicolas Jarry is the last of the four wildcard entries into the tournament on the men’s side. The teenager looks to put Chilean tennis on the map again since the departure of Fernando Gonzalez has left an empty gap for the South American country. Jarry is the grandson of former world number 14 and 1976 Davis Cup finalist Jaime Fillol.