Hibi Advances To Henderson Tennis Open Semi-Finals

Mayo Hibi (photo: Cashman Photo)

HENDERSON, November 9, 2019 (by Steve Pratt)

Irvine, Calif., neighbors Mayo Hibi and Alexa Glatch have played plenty of practices sets over the past several weeks in their Southern California area when they’re both not traveling to different tournaments around the world.

On Friday, Hibi and Glatch met up in the singles quarterfinals of the Henderson Tennis Open with the 23-year-old Hibi getting the better of the 30-year-old Glatch, 7-5, 6-1, as Hibi advanced to the semifinals at the DragonRidge Country Club.

“I was playing a tough opponent today who hits a pretty heavy ball and a good slice backhand,” said Hibi, who also advanced to the semifinals in this event back in 2013 as a 17-year-old eventually falling to Melanie Oudin. “So I knew I had to construct the points and play it smart. Alexa and I have been practicing together the past several weeks, It’s really nice to have someone at this level who I can practice with on a daily basis.”

Hibi, ranked No. 214 in the WTA World Tour rankings, will play No. 3-seeded Katarina Zavatska of the Ukraine in Saturday’s semifinals not before 2 p.m. Zavatska defeated American and No. 8-seeded Caroline Dolehide, 6-2, 4-6, 6-4.

“I’m happy to be back here in Las Vegas and it’s pretty close to home,” Hibi said. “I have some very good memories of Las Vegas. The venue has changed, but I really like it here.”

The first semifinal on Saturday will pit Katherine Sebov of Canada against fellow unseeded player Anhelina Kalinina of the Ukraine to follow the 10 a.m. doubles final. Sebov downed Olga Govortsova of Belarus, 6-3, 6-2, while Kalinina defeated No. 5-seeded Varvara Lepchenko of Allentown, Pa., 6-3, 6-3.

“I thought I played very well and my play has getting better and better every match,” Sebov said. “Olga tried to give me some trouble in running me around, but I think I’m playing the best I’ve ever played.”

Longtime doubles partners and best friends Sophie Chang and Alexandra Mueller are both Las Vegas veterans. They beat the pairing of Glatch and Quinn Gleason, 6-3, 6-3, to advance to Saturday’s doubles final, which will be played at 10 a.m., before the singles semifinals back-to-back. The first semifinal will be followed by the doubles final with the second semi not before 2 p.m. Unseeded Chang and Mueller will face the No. 3 seeds Govortsova and Mandy Minella of Luxembourg. Govortsova and Minella beat former world top 5 player and one-time Wimbledon finalist Genie Bouchard and Hungary’s Fanny Stollar, the No. 2 seeds, by the same 6-3, 6-3 score.