With three stops down and one to go in the 2019-2020 Oracle Challenger Series, American hopefuls have their sights set on the Indian Wells Tennis Garden as the final opportunity to earn ranking points, prize money and wild card entry into the 2020 BNP Paribas Open rapidly approaches.
After incredible tournaments in New Haven, Houston and Newport Beach, the Oracle Challenger Series is moving to Indian Wells for the final event on the 2019-2020 Road to Indian Wells. The stakes have never been higher for the talented roster of Americans, as they battle for top leaderboard positioning with main draw entry into the 2020 BNP Paribas Open on the line. The question now, is which competitors will shine under the bright lights at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden and earn the coveted wild cards? Let’s highlight a few of our Americans to watch during our third annual visit to Indian Wells:
The men’s field is highlighted by two well-known Americans competing in their second consecutive Oracle Challenger Series events, in World No. 75 Steve Johnson and four-time ATP Challenger level title winner Frances Tiafoe. Johnson, a Southern California native who played collegiate tennis at nearby USC, is looking for a strong showing in Indian Wells after a quarterfinal exit at January’s Newport Beach event. Former World No. 29 Tiafoe is also chasing his first Oracle Challenger Series title. Joining them in Indian Wells is 2019 Oracle Challenger Series Houston champion Marcos Giron, who currently sits atop the men’s Road to Indian Wells Leaderboard, followed closely by 2020 Newport Beach men’s singles champion Thai-Son Kwiatkowski.
Other men’s competitors who find themselves in leaderboard contention include 2018 Oracle Challenger Series Houston champion Bradley Klahn, who currently sits in fifth place, as well as multiple-time semifinalist and current fourth place holder Mitchell Krueger. Rounding out the American male contingent is former World No. 8 and three-time Grand Slam doubles champion Jack Sock, World No. 106 Dennis Kudla and 2017 Oracle US Tennis Award recipient Mackenzie McDonald, as well as Michael Mmoh and Sebastian Korda.
On the women’s side, a host of compelling Oracle Challenger Series veterans are ready to take center stage in Indian Wells. The field is led by Jessica Pegula, who captured her first WTA Tour level title at Washington last summer and was one of last year’s BNP Paribas Open wild card recipients due to her impressive performances throughout the 2018-2019 Oracle Challenger Series. World No. 72 Taylor Townsend, who currently holds the fourth place position on the women’s Road to Indian Wells Leaderboard, is hoping to build upon the momentum she gained from an incredible Round of 16 run at the 2019 US Open as well as her recent semifinal run at Newport Beach in January. Teenage sensation Catherine McNally returns to the Oracle Challenger Series, having captured WTA doubles titles at Washington and Luxembourg last season alongside partner Coco Gauff; as well as current points leader on the Road to Indian Wells Leaderboard and 2020 Newport Beach women’s singles champion Madison Brengle.
2019 New Haven finalist Usue Arconada, who currently sits in third place, highlights the list of additional American contenders which also includes 2016 Roland Garros quarterfinalist Shelby Rogers, 2018 Oracle US Tennis Award recipient Francesca Di Lorenzo and World No. 64 Bernarda Pera. Christina McHale, Nicole Gibbs, Kristie Ahn, Whitney Osuigwe, Allie Kiick and Ann Li complete the women’s American field.
The final stop is within reach and players and fans alike are excited to see who will stake their claim as the 2019-2020 Oracle Challenger Series concludes in Indian Wells. Who will emerge from the pack and earn wild card entry into the 2020 BNP Paribas Open? Join us March 2 – 8 at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden to find out!