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  Topic Review (Newest First)
Yesterday 04:16 PM
Re: The Irina Falconi Cheer Squad

Irina has been cranking out some tough and impressive wins in Beijing:

QR1 d. Kudryavtseva 62 46 62
QR2 d. Shvedova 36 62 62
MDR1 d. Gavrilova 75 26 64

She's scheduled to face Muguruza in R2, so potentially a huge opportunity if Garbine is not 100% recovered from Wuhan (or is replaced by a LL).
Sep 15th, 2015 06:29 PM
Re: The Irina Falconi Cheer Squad

Irina is back in action this week at the tourney in Tokyo, Japan. She won her first rd match last night 5/7 7/5 6/3 over Osaka

Next Up: Sai Sai Goat

Sep 1st, 2015 11:01 PM
Re: The Irina Falconi Cheer Squad

^^ Thanks for the heads up

Irina vs Venus is tomorrow nights featured women's match
Sep 1st, 2015 10:36 PM
Re: The Irina Falconi Cheer Squad

Irina getting so many feature articles ever since her BFF became a writer for

She is also blogging for ESPNW during the USO:
Aug 31st, 2015 08:40 PM
Re: The Irina Falconi Cheer Squad

Originally Posted by Task View Post
Irina has won her first round match at the US Open, beating Samantha Crawford 6-4, 6-2.

Way to go Irina This win puts her inside the live rankings Top 70

Next Up: V-Star... GL!
Aug 31st, 2015 07:40 PM
Re: The Irina Falconi Cheer Squad

Irina has won her first round match at the US Open, beating Samantha Crawford 6-4, 6-2.

Aug 4th, 2015 04:37 PM
Re: The Irina Falconi Cheer Squad

Go Irina!!
Aug 4th, 2015 12:16 PM
Re: The Irina Falconi Cheer Squad

Irina is back in action this week in Washington, DC. She started off slowly but fought back in the 2nd and 3rd sets to defeat Taylor 6/7 6/1 6/3
Jun 23rd, 2015 04:20 PM
Re: The Irina Falconi Cheer Squad

Is Irina part of the USTA program now? I noticed she was getting on-court coaching from a USTA coach (Anibal Aranda) today against Aga.

Kind of strange, like at age 25, they finally decided she had some potential or what?!?
Jun 22nd, 2015 05:35 PM
Re: The Irina Falconi Cheer Squad

Irina just won her 1st rd match 1 & 1 over Dulgheru
Jun 21st, 2015 01:19 PM
Re: The Irina Falconi Cheer Squad

Irina just qualified for the Eastbourne MD with a 7/6 6/3 win over Tomljanovic
Jun 13th, 2015 06:51 PM
Re: The Irina Falconi Cheer Squad

Irina got off to a good start today in B-Ham with a 6/3 6/3 win over Margarita Gasparyan

Next Up: MLDB...GL!
Jun 8th, 2015 01:39 PM
Re: The Irina Falconi Cheer Squad

As of today, Irina has now achieved a career high ranking of #71.

May 28th, 2015 11:42 PM
Re: The Irina Falconi Cheer Squad

Thanks pov
May 28th, 2015 10:10 PM
Re: The Irina Falconi Cheer Squad

At Cross-Court Rally's request:

Irina Falconi's Long and Winding Road

- by Nina Pantic

The 2015 French Open began with 17 American women in the main draw, and just four advanced to the second round. Serena Williams, Sloane Stephens and Madison Keys all recorded straight-set victories, but the most impressive win, at least in terms of the scoreboard, was posted by world No. 85 Irina Falconi, who defeated French wildcard Manon Arcangioli, 6-2, 6-0.

“It’s always difficult playing a French woman in France because French crowds go out of their way to support their players,” Falconi told “Even when I was well up in the match, they were still cheering her on like it was nobody’s business.”

Falconi’s name isn’t often heard alongside those other three Americans, all of whom have reached a Grand Slam semifinal in their careers (and in one particular case, much, much more). That’s because the 25-year-old’s unconventional story has taken her down a very long and winding road.

I first met Falconi in 2004, when I played her at a junior tournament called the Bush Florida Open. “Met” may be too strong of word, however, since we didn’t speak a word to each other. But years later, we ended up training together by chance under the same coach in south Florida and took to the grind of the Pro Circuit, staying in guest housing and cheap hotels. We were socially awkward, home-schooled teenagers playing tennis all day and occasionally taking our RipStiks on rides by the beach. While she loves to say I didn’t like her at first, we couldn’t be better friends now.

Falconi had some success during those years, even winning a $10,000 tournament in Mexico, but opted to go to Georgia Tech in 2008. We went on that recruiting trip together as part of an RV college tour up the East Coast, which culminated in a Rocky-style, hardcore training stint at a deserted campsite in Virginia. She survived that adventure and hit her stride in Atlanta as a two-time All-American, winning two national titles, spending many weeks at No. 1 and putting together a 40-2 record during her sophomore year.

Turning pro in 2010, Falconi’s rise to the Top 100 was fairly swift, and she reached a career-high No. 73 at the back end of 2011. She even enjoyed a bit of a fairy-tale run at the 2011 U.S. Open, taking out then-No. 15 Dominika Cibulkova on her way to the third round.

Then Falconi took one of those sharp curves along her winding professional path. She dropped outside the Top 150 in 2013 and was forced to enter the same ITF Pro Circuit events she played before college. “What motivated me was the fact that I had gotten Top 100 before, which meant to me that I could do it again,” Falconi said. “I am playing very free at the moment, and I’m just enjoying every minute of it.”

Through it all, Falconi’s family support has been unwavering. Both her parents are hard-working, humble immigrants (she was born in Portoviejo, Ecuador), and have made a home in Jupiter, Fla.—where I’ve eaten hundreds of home-cooked meals and spent hours on their hammocks. Thanks to her upbringing, Falconi has a deeply ingrained positive attitude and unflappable mental strength. While she’s just 5’4”—I love to call her a hobbit—she’s made up for her lack of size and power by having greater shot variety (including a lethal drop shot) and the patience to craft smarter points.

Falconi’s persistence paid off last fall, when she won her first $50,000 tournament in New Brunfels, Texas. Her success in tennis’ lower rungs earned her a main draw wild card into this year’s Australian Open, where she beat Kaia Kanepi in the first round. At Indian Wells, she defeated Ajla Tomljanovic and stretched Garbine Muguruza to three sets. She qualified in Miami and took out Monica Puig before falling to Ana Ivanovic in three tight sets.

“I think the biggest difference this past year to get back in the Top 100 was changing my mindset, improving my mental game and playing for the love of the sport—not because I had to,” Falconi said. “I think that with the right mentality and great work ethic, a lot can happen.”

As Falconi readies to face No. 106-ranked Sesil Karatantcheva in the second round of Roland Garros, the latest milepost on her journey, she knows one thing for sure: No matter the stage or the opponent, her preparation for every match remains the same. “That's the thing about a routine, it doesn't matter what happens, who you play, what the weather is, you stick with the same routine,” she said. “At the end of the day, the ball is the same, the court is the same.”

Throughout her career, Falconi has largely flown [*under] the radar. At 25, she’s already closing in on veteran status, yet her future is looking as bright as ever. With a win over Karatantcheva, the world No. 85 would edge closer toward a career-high ranking.

No matter what happens this week, she’s got the right attitude—and it doesn’t hurt that she’s in a city she loves. “Paris is one of my favorite places in the world,” Falconi said. “I actually plan to live here for a little bit after I’m done playing tennis. The croissants are just too good.”

[* = edit by pov]
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