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Van der Merwe Reaches ITA Quarterfinals

Courtesy: ODU Athletics
         
Release: October 10, 2003
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Oct. 10, 2003

CHATTANOOGA, TN -- Old Dominion's junior Izak van der Merwe (Kempton Park, South Africa) was one of 16 men's tennis players to advance to the main draw of the ITA All-American Qualifier earlier this week and has since advanced to the tournament's quarterfinals.

Seeded 16th in the qualifying bracket, van der Merwe posted straight set wins, which included a win over Conner Murningham of Illinois (6-1, 6-1) and Raian Luchici of North Carolina (6-3, 6-3).

Van der Merwe battled back from a 1-6 first set loss in his first round match-up against 13th seeded Lester Cook of Texas A&M to pull off the upset victory. He won the next two sets, 6-4, 6-2. In the second round van der Merwe posted a straight set win, 7-5, 6-2 against Peter Stroer of Texas and then defeated Michael Rubin of Michigan, 6-3, 6-3 in the Round of 16 to advance to the quarterfinals. Rubin, van der Merwe's Round of 16 opponent, had defeated third seeded Tobias Clemens of UCLA.

Van der Merwe, who already captured the Virginia Tournament Title, is awaiting his quarterfinal opponent. Pierrick Ysern of San Diego or William Barker of Rice have been waiting out rain showers to see who will battle the Monarch junior to advance to the semifinals. The quarterfinal is slated to begin on Saturday at 10:00 a.m.

In other Monarch men's tennis action, senior Zoltan Csanadi (Timisoara, Romania) upset ninth seeded Karim Benmansour of South Florida in his first round match in the qualifying bracket. Csanadi came from behind after dropping the first set, 2-6, to win the next two sets, 7-5, 6-1 to advance. Csanadi was halted in the second round dropping a 3-6, 6-2, 6-1 decision to Erik Nyman of Brigham Young.

Both van der Merwe and Csanadi also will take to the courts in doubles play this weekend. Seeded third, the duo will face Chris Martin and Evan Zeder in their first round match-up.

MATCH SUMMARY

Qualifying Bracket:
Zoltan Csanadi (ODU) def. #9 Karim Benmansour (SF): 2-6, 7-5, 6-1
Erik Nyman (BYU) def. Zoltan Csanadi (ODU): 3-6, 6-2, 6-1

#16 Izak van der Merwe (ODU) def. Conner Murnigham (Ill): 6-1, 6-1 #16 Izak van der Merwe (ODU) def. Raian Luchici (UNC): 6-3, 6-3

Main Draw Bracket: Izak van der Merwe (ODU) def. #13 Lester Cook (TAM): 1-6, 6-4, 6-2 Izak van der Merwe (ODU) def. Peter Stroer (TEX): 7-5, 6-2 Izak van der Merwe (ODU) def. Michael Rubin (MICH): 6-3, 6-3

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