The Kastles hope to continue their winning streak, defend World TeamTennis title.
By Alex DeCesare
Clockwise from left: Martina Hingis (photo by Kevin Koski), Anastasia Rodionova (photo by Rich Kessler) and Bobby Reynolds (photo by Susan Mellane of Camerawork USA)
Washington’s Kastles tennis team kicks off their season by hoping to defend their standing title as World TeamTennis Champions for the fourth consecutive year.
After a 13-match winning streak and two wins in their new season against the Boston Lobsters, Coach Murphy Jensen, named three-time winner of WTT Coach of the Year, will again be leading his team of all-stars in what will undoubtedly be an exciting season at their new home at George Washington University’s newly renovated Charles E. Smith Center.
The first week’s matchups were no ordinary games. The Lobsters have been deemed the team’s fiercest Eastern rivals since they knocked out the Kastles in the 2010 regular season finale. The Kastles proved to be a competitive force in their match in Boston Monday night, walking away with their 13th consecutive seasonal win and 11th win against the Lobsters.
The Kastles came out strong with a flawless lineup featuring the team’s core players, Leander Paes, Bobby Reynolds and Anastasia Rodionova, all of whom are known for completing a “three-peat” of WTT titles as members of the 2013 team. The Kastles impressed the Boston crowd, prevailing with a 24-16 win.
This week’s matches feature World No. 17-ranked star Kevin Anderson and two-time WTT Finals MVP Martina Hingis, who will headline for the Kastles’ home openers. This season’s line-up also includes WTT Finals MVP Reynolds and third-year player Rodionova, and Wimbledon semifinalist Paes.
“I’ve been really lucky to have a great Olympic and a great Davis Cup career, and this is exactly like that,” Paes said. “I’m here playing for the community of Washington. I’ve been really blessed to be able to do that.”