The APP Tour is back after a month off, returning to St. Louis for the eighth tournament of the season. Over 400 amateur and pro players will participate in the standard singles and doubles events at the APP Sunmed St. Louis Open, hosted at the Dwight Davis Tennis Center in beautiful Forest Park.
At the last APP tournament in Newport Beach, Parris Todd won her second triple crown of 2023, becoming the first woman in APP history to achieve multiple triple crowns. Will she be able to do it again? Let’s look at this weekend’s pro events and find our favorites!
For men’s singles, lately it’s been all about the Johnson brothers. Yates recently knocked out Ben Johns at last weekend’s PPA Takeya Showcase, and Hunter continues to take gold medals in the APP as the number one ranked player in singles.
Outside of the Johnsons, the two other standout names are going to be John Cincola and Zack Taylor. Cincola has been solid in doubles this year, taking a silver alongside Brendon Long at the Vlasic Classic, and this might be his weekend for a breakout performance in APP singles.
While we haven’t seen Taylor on the singles podium yet this year, he’s earned multiple medals in the APP previously and will be on the hunt for a medal in St. Louis. Taylor also is the lead instructor/program manager for Pickleball Cares, a new pickleball non-profit seeking to bring opportunities to communities in need.
This looks like a good weekend for Salome Devidze to make her return, as top singles pros Megan Fudge and Parris Todd have opted out to focus solely on doubles this weekend. Devidze has three gold medals so far this season.
Outside of Devidze, we recommend keeping an eye out for Shelby Bates and Alix Truong. Bates played an integral role on the D.C. Pickelball Team in MLP Season One and was redrafted to the New Jersey 5’s for Season Two. Alix Truong was also drafted in the second round to the California BLQK Bears for MLP Season Two and has multiple APP medals this year, including a gold with Andrei Daescu at the Vlasic Classic.
In our eyes, mixed doubles is going to be the spotlight event of the weekend, with so many incredible teams in the running for the gold. You’ve got the defending champs Parris Todd and Hunter Johnson, Yates Johnson partnering up with double’s superstar Simone Jardim, and of course Andrei Daescu partnering back up with Susannah Barr.
There’s also Megan Fudge and Rob Nunnery, Bobbi Oshiro and Brendon Long, Pesa Teoni and Shelby Bates, and the list goes on! Our favorite has to be the duo of Andrei Daescu and Susannah Barr, as both have multiple medals in mixed under their belt this year, but this will be an interesting draw to watch and see how it unfolds.
Andrei Daescu and Rob Nunnery have already taken a gold medal together in the APP this year and are also coming off of a bronze medal at the Beer City Open. Daescu has ten gold medals in 2023, making him the winningest in men’s pros.
The Johnson brothers also make their return to doubles this weekend and we wouldn’t be surprised to see them in the finals. Another pair to watch out for will be Pesa Teoni and Austin Gridley.
Teoni’s achieved multiple golds with Daescu this year, and Gridley took home a Bronze at Newport Beach with Rob Nunnery. It would be exhilerating to see a battle between the four teammates!
It’s going to be difficult to stop Parris Todd and Simone Jardim this weekend. Todd leads all APP pros with 12 gold medals in 2023 so far, with 16 medals total, and is undefeated with Jardim at her side.
However, we think that the team of Megan Fudge and Susannah Barr could make a run here. The two just won gold at the 2023 English Open together, and we see them taking that energy going into St. Louis!
We are sorry that this post was not useful for you!
Let us improve this post!
Tell us how we can improve this post?