Welcome back to tennis Channel's coverage of the Baird wealth management open at the lynchner family Tennis Center just outside Cincinnati Ohio we have reached the semi-finals of the mixed doubles Pro Division and time once again to see Lucy kovalova and Matt Wright on the court we began our uh our calling of matches today Dave Fleming uh.

Seeing them finish off their quarterfinal match to take on the team of Jesse Irvin and Jane devillier depends alongside Dave Fleming for a second straight day here on Tennis Channel and what a setting this has been at the beard Wealth Management Open the weather couldn't be more perfect it's a beautiful day it's a grand slam so.

There's more points on the line there's a lot of opportunity here you wanna win this match you want to punch that ticket to Championship Sunday everyone on this court played high-level tennis so to be where the western and southern tennis tournament takes place and be playing a semi-final match in this venue that is huge for these four.

Players that we see no question and these are four players who uh they they all know what it takes to win they've all played pickleball for quite a while at a very high level but right now you just feel like this this kovalova and right team that they really kind of have found their footing they I mean it's been a pleasure to watch and.

The ascent has been steady and consistent and you know Matt Lucy's it Lucy's always been fantastic and Matt has been great as well but I just feel like Matt is playing as good as we've ever seen him play yeah the uh the play he brought from Utah appears to be here in uh Ohio because he was absolutely phenomenal at the Tournament of.

Champions the tour stop prior to this one so this is going to be great again three of the four players from Wichita and one from Southern California here so uh what's up Wichita you're everywhere this morning wichita's all over it I'm sure they're dialed in here on Tennis Channel loving that as well.

so there's a look at the team of kovan right on the right side of your screen Irvin and davilier on the left side Jay davilier the native of France had a quick side out we'll get it to kovalovan right so zero zero one wow that was an impressive defensive return by Irving but a better put away.

By Matt Wright yeah just the fact she got a paddle on that after it hopped off the tape shows how good her hands are but uh set up right for one easy finish gets handcuffed on that quick flick by Matt Wright yeah so when you're at the kitchen line you got to have those dinks bounce if they don't have so many options and Matt writes So Long Reach in.

There and caught that paddle side hip of devillier thank you second sir Matt Wright was coming to finish what he started but the long arm of the Lucy got got in there with the two-handed backhand and then I think she's sort of pulled out of there after like oh.

You should have better communication I mean come on do these to know each other yeah of course I'm speaking sarcasm they are uh they are fantastic combination on the court and off the court just a delight to interact with both of them and there's Jesse Irvin has probably the best ATP or around the post in the.

Women's game and uh I think I think Matt thought that one might be going out but his paddle's already there to defend it point and that'll tie it up in 2-2 two two one Irvin and tavilion got to the semifinals by defeating the team of Catherine parento and Colin Johns.

They won that in straight games 11-5 11-1 there's our first fist raise of the day from Lucy kovaleva right there and right in kovaleva will talk to the other team they will get the crowd fired up that's part of what makes them special and it's part of the whole package they bring to the court every time.

I got it out second serve oh kovalova just had a little bit too much on that one yeah that's a tough ball to flick she's trying to catch passed you can see her practicing that motion three different swings there side out side out we'll get it back over to.

Devillier and Irvin a native of California originally and devillier from France great shot by kovalova there right came her way twice and then didn't hit the ball and that one as an example and then does come get the next one that right quick cans he's got power.

He's got great anticipation doesn't make a lot of mistakes he's got of course that signature LOB ster Jesse Irvin just standing there making it look easy two two side out side out will send it back over to.

Irving and devillier a little pitcher stool here in the fourth inning civilian puts it away and that's what you want to do when you have when you're hitting down and your opponent is hitting up go get it finish it yourself don't let that ball get to your partner great job by davilier there Austin netting out so the point puts.

Irvin into villier with a two-point cushion now four two one great defense by devilier and they're going to finally end this on a football right pushed off so the football isn't always forward in some cases backwards here's gonna be a great look at it right.

Yes there it was and another point so Irvin into villier now with this 6-2 advantage six two one Steve Hast was right on it on that foot fault come on you hear the come on.

Six two two we got netcam to show you it up close and personal that was great so the side out we'll get it back to kovalovan right after Irving into villier opened up this four-point lead see if kovalovan Wright have an answer do like how aggressive davilia is playing in the middle of the Court here.

Yeah gotta make it three six three six one foreign right both get up to the kitchen line but then Lucy hits it into the net yeah that's a dink that Jesse would love to have back because this is sailing way.

Too high Jesse with some reaction everybody's yelling we'll get a la from Jocelyn at some point or come on is his favorite non-french exaltation and come on right back at you out of Matt right.

Combined well over 1100 commands here in game number one six three two nice backhand by komalova yeah that first ball we saw there in the Highlight was the one that devillier had a chance to do more with it in kovalova hung in there and that ends up winning.

The point foreign and that's what Jay davilier and the other taller Ernie intensive players they take away that straight ahead dick that your backhand his backhand down the line is not available.

Foreign had many exchanges like that in practice this one just counts on the scoreboard in a grand slam on the PPA tour move us to the second server and this is where Irvin and davilia need to add to that lead they are up they've been stuck on six for a while.

Foreign so the number one ranked team in a hole down 8-3 in game one we'll take a quick break while we knew Irvin and davilier were going to give kovalovan right all they.

Could handle but they've had that and then some in this first game day Fleming they sure have and you see uh getting a little extra from all the action we've had up at the kitchen line you see the Beautiful video board back there showcasing Cincinnati Ohio where we're just a little bit up the road in Mason Ohio at.

This iconic tennis facility we're on Tennis Channel you have four tennis Heroes but it's all about pickleball today Dave and the pickleball level has been significant yeah Jay devilier who played collegiately at Wichita State had dreams of playing professional tennis before a severe injury made him.

Decide to play tennis collegiately and yeah he was a practice partner at the US Open for all the top Pros so that's how good he was he is excelled on the pickleball court since making the full-time switch and you know part of part of his his full-time switch to pickleball coincided with the pandemic.

And I know there was a while he didn't get to go back to his native country of France and I know that took a little bit of a personal toll on him but uh I know that he's relieved now to be able to go back to France he's become an ambassador for the sport there as part of the French pickleball Association I just want to know Dave Fleming our.

Week are we close to point is Irvin and davilia moved to the second serve here and have a chance to close out this first game and that is going to be the side out as it does just land in I just want to know we're getting to the point where we're going to see an international tour of some of these top football players.

I think that will definitely come I think the tennis players second serve are going to see the opportunity here and as this grows get more involved in it so uh 10-3-2 nothing but upside for pickleball see if the four seed can take it on their third game point they cannot so three opportunities are lost you don't want to do that against the team.

As talented as kovaleva and right no you definitely don't worry good one guess the only good news is that Koval over and right haven't been able to get anything going when they have had the serve if you're Irvin and davilier foreign perfectly defended by right.

And then right back at you says Lucy double ATP Magic on the same point and it used to be these were just that's just gonna be a winner but now these guys are so good they're defending them and then uh Lucy's like I got you second sir what a point is that what could spark a fire here from kovalova and right down 410 in game.

One foreign and you saw again we talked about in the last match attack the right side of kovalova will set up the the put away and well done let's see if the fourth time's the charm here game point number four.

And that time the ATP is a winner and so are Irvin and davilier in game one they take game one in pretty impressive fashion one more look at the finishing point for that game so number one of the world going to game two well let's take a look at the ATP Mr Fleming yeah so a couple things here.

When you are in a cross court dink like kovalova and Irvin have been in you don't want to take it too far as kovalova does here because she gives the ATP and what she did he defended it on the left side of his body so she brought that ATP back inside and that's why Wright was unable to do it because it ended up on the right side of his body.

Not the left side where he has the backhand he couldn't get it over there so a lot of interesting stuff just within one one shot there from Irvin very smart adjustment that quick well and it was interesting watching Irvin I mean I guess it's a little bit you know it's coming right but you look at it you could see she's she's hunting and she's.

Waiting for that she's the best in the business at it because she's able to slap it so low the fact that right is 50 on defending those is in and of itself impressive like kovalova doing some work to keep that point alive and then that ball by devillier just dies yeah we talked a lot about.

Deception yesterday and you saw the big wind-up for davilier there and then he just silky dropper beautiful shot point and the point by Irvin and davilia that's our first sorry not sorry the morning here Dave or the afternoon for those of you on the East Coast second tournament trying to hit that one.

Wall running backwards always tough to pull that off yeah that's why if your opponent is back keep them back one zero two foreign how about that reaction out of Jesse she's caught uh Matt right on the back side a couple times as he's just really leaning in heavy forehand you see him.

Right there just hunting something in there with his left hand there which is not legal or extra points Jesse asking for some help as Matt Wright says it's out and they confirmed so sight out zero two one.

Second third you heard Jesse say out so Jay gets out of the way yeah and for uh kovalev and right they either need to make better third shot drives to get these drops to bounce it's taken out of the air they're way behind shout out and Lucy with the misfire there and you're trying to keep tovilia I've.

Talked about how aggressive he's been in the middle of the Court you're trying to keep him Honest by going behind him but she went too far Irvin and kovalova backhand by Lucy and then a fire fight being won by Matt Wright great Point great handle with the.

Two-handed backhand swinging overhead by kovaleva right there that is a tough shot especially after Divinity tried to flip it up with the LOB ster come on serve going back over to kovalovan right.

That's the way he played the entire time every forehand he got in Utah he was speeding it up somewhere at somebody and then screaming come on afterwards so that's the formula they just need to get into that more often they've not been able to do much at all when they've had the serve and that Trent continues take a turn yeah and.

Irvin has been out dinking kovalova and that's a big part of why the scoreboard is what it is couple of on right had a 2-1 lead in game one so it's 13 to 1 cents in favor of Irvin and davilier you know people wonder well why should I take the middle you should stick middle a lot because you get the movement of.

Your opponent another point for Irvin and villier and then aggressive flying Frenchman is a very good thing if you are cheering from here with the devilier side foreign another ATP by Irving and another impressive block by Matt that was really I mean the fact that.

He's able to get a paddle on those and then return it the way that he is again just ridiculous he's hitting letters off atps that are smoked so mother nature played a role there as Matt Wright could not see the lob you heard him say I can't see it and just sort of bunned that overhead back in the court but uh works out that is something.

The villier will take note of throw it up again if you're in trouble if they can't see it finally on the scoreboard here 1-3 -1 and that's why two two three and there's just that little indecision devillier was looking to get a ball didn't happen.

And then Irvin had to find her footwork and just overcompensate it devillier certainly had to earn that point yeah you have had a nice chance in the Ernie and then it kissed off the tape and then you heard trap coach Matt Wright encouraging Lucy.

To finish that last 40 and get the ball but uh couldn't and now they get a cheap one well they'll take it they they'll take all they can get they haven't had a lot of brakes go their way so far in this match but now I've drawn even a three apiece oh Lucy.

Oh not sure she was out of the kitchen yeah I don't know if she was either but they let it play on foreign it was impressive no matter what just being able to get that back over guaranteed daviliates thinking that while this point continues.

There he is he's having that conversation with that is exactly what's happening right there the fact that he was there was no doubt in my mind that was churning in his head and she she's got to reestablish both feet which she clearly did not there and the pickleball don't lie either exactly.

they're a fast 40 the official ball the PPA tour so kovalova thinking maybe she could have went for an Ernie there Point yeah when she does that she's not even really wanting the ball every time but that forces a ball into the map right side of the court and in the middle and maybe.

Sets up one of those blistering forehands so she'd certainly take it if given the ball but it's also strategic devillier gets handcuffed so kovalova and right forces the side out we'll get the serp back three four one sure the devillier family is happy to see Jocelyn get pegged from that camp.

There's the patented Matt right LOB point hadn't seen too many of those in this match prior to that one no perfectly executed and then you can see you push your opponents off the line you're thinking 441 how is he able to do this so effectively it's because it's disguised well it looks similar to his.

Other shots and he can get it over the big Frenchman so kovalev went right for the first time in game two have a lead and now you see kovalova winning those cross-court dank battles and it was her that was able to finish and then of course she got to come on in there just ridiculously good first volley from.

Irvin offers shoe tops to set that up I mean this this right here is a tough ball great finish and it all set up I have to put it in a spot where David could do that winner of this one will move on to the final on Sunday on Championship Sunday.

I don't think that's legal Jay are we watching handball or pickleball well he did play a lot of handball growing up so you see the quickness there but that's the keeping keeping him honest if he wants to get in there beautiful deception by kovalova inside out on that shot and now they've stretched out to a two-point lead again kovilova winning.

This Cross Court Exchange you know side out side out though gets it back to Irving into villier Jason shaking his head four six one no more of that exerts his will.

Moves to Second server 462 devillier takes over and hits it right into the net that's going to be side out and that's going to take us to a timeout TV so kovalova and right looking to expand their 6-4 lead here in game two we'll step aside for a moment back into paired Wealth Management Open.

Just outside Cincinnati Ohio mixed semi-final number one and the number one ranked pairing of kovalovan right showing a little bit of muscle here in this second game game team Fleming they sure are you know they did not make Championship Sunday at the tournament champions in Utah they were beaten by a team we'll see coming up in 6-4-1 Kohler.

And Smith so they desperately want to get back but big mountain to climb here of course the game three and then see what happens towards the game three they've opened up their lead in game two to seven four seven four one.

And the long return he's gonna make it 8-4 841 that flip lob by Matt Wright and then ultimately right hits it into the net he's questioning whether there's a footfall on davilia there eight four two none noted that's long.

It's a couple loose errors are aiding this uh run for top seed the lobite devillier Met by the lob from right and then right again into the net an unbelievable get by Matt Wright and then complete Confusion by Irvin and davilia about who's going after that ball nobody and then Matt Rice highlight.

Reel finish into the wide open court yeah he saw that wide open court and it just uh was too salivating foreign they're working nine to five right now or five to nine five nine two way down the line when you hit it okay so that's why so Matt Wright definitely mentioned that on the prior Point didn't.

Get the call so that time he does do you get an extra yes clearly on it great call Steve Hast how about division by Matt Wright to see it too yes take a turn quickly though they break the first serve so second serve now as kobaloba.

Will take over looking for two points to close out this game and it's a side out 591 foreign Irvin yeah and then Irvin tried to speed it up and the misfire and even though the outcome rarely comes.

Five night cross-court battle it is the setting up the patterns for this match that that's so critical wow impressive display finally won by Matt Wright and a 60 000 decibel yeah to punctuate that one bye unable to do anything with it on the.

First serve so 952-952 thank you and it's gonna be a side out now it's Koval over and right we've been stuck on a number for a little while Yep this is where you gotta go if you're Irving and devillier five nine one.

Get to the kitchen and then find a ball that Jocelyn can get involved that's a ball he doesn't need to do that much with just help get Irvin to the kitchen sometimes what he's trying to do there but uh for too severe an angle.

Nine five one second turn still stuck on nine yeah we've seen some missed thirds a missed serve kovalova which almost never happens proof that there's no Jinx there oh that was impressive that the urban shot that preceded that was impressive and.

Then Matt just says yeah I'm done with this point and the other thing you saw there were the ladies heads up Irvin isabelier did not want to unwind the stack which means what they're doing there with having devillier have to run all the way over and we're gonna play three why not let's play three so four eleven eleven five.

We'll go to decisive third after this time out well this match has been so fun why not play three games I love it and of course we will switch sides at six and while there isn't a win Factor we saw on one of the lobs that Matt Wright lost it in the Sun so there is certainly that factor.

Are currently on so here we go Irvin and the villier did go three games in their first match this morning and making it to the quarterfinals at Point devilier puts that one away for the first point of game three played the very tough youngster Hayden Patrick and Jade kawamoto so took three to one zero two send them to the.

Backdraw eleven five seven eleven eleven three Irvin it's villier finally emerged is called on devillier so he's saying no netcam I'm certain we'll have an answer to that is clearly in great call by the referee Steve Hast is on it Steve's all over and you know we talk about watching tape.

And you watch patterns you watch your own play you watch what works against players you also the players are going to learn that their feet are in more than they think and the referees aren't right and all over it unable to catch up to that one I think that's been one of the great things about pickleball.

As well now Dave Fleming is the sport has emerged and now more and more matches are on tape you you can you've got more you can study at this level if you're an opponent and see kind of what the Tendencies of the other players are you have to do it because you know the opponent is don't know what your opponent is good.

And not good at doing how can you possibly show up with a plan I talked to Colin Johnson about that he brings a narrative to every match based on what he's seen based on what he knows the strengths and weaknesses of his opponents are and Irvin can't believe davilia didn't take that she was surprised she was.

Swinging at it here comes all over encouraging Matt right they're down a couple one break away from getting a side out Lucy and Jay going back and forth it's all about patience and waiting for your opportunity and Matt Wright not doing much he's he's.

Waiting for his opportunity No Doubt instead it's devillier that takes the opportunity yeah and it's hard if you're Matt Wright in that situation because you can't just go haphazardly flying in front of kovalova and you know obviously we talk about trust a lot in this game he trusts her to get that ball into a safe place and.

She's going to see a lot of balls he knows that coming out here against this team three zero two points and make it four zero two so Irvin and davilier and join a little cushion here in game three and still controlling the serve and you wonder if the prior point was in Matt's head as he went to take that ball on the move and.

Missed the forehand bomb well an important break there they get the side out I wonder if there had been a point if they might have considered a timeout yeah you get the free one at six when you switch sides but you don't want them to get to six and you have zip exactly foreign.

So what you saw there is Matt Wright slides in front of kovalova but then he slides back to cover his side and that exact Lane was available for Irvin and she threaded the needle perfectly there sometimes right down the middle is the best place you can put the ball and now here we go so now it's 4-0 and we're back to that situation might you.

See a timeout if it gets to five zero as you said there will be a side switch when one team gets to six and stay 4-0 for the moment four zero two Cross Court exchange that's setting up everything great job by right of getting in there the ATP not able to land in bounds there.

To the side out forced zero four one point and finally on the board are kovalovan right and a nice dink placement there on that left foot it's been mostly crossbowed on the forehands great job by kovaleva of being able to avoid the devilier paddle in the middle and then finding the backhand.

Of urban yeah Point hear the crowd getting behind kovalovan right a little bit two four one oh I'm watching your feet Point well they're gonna call the point all right so.

Right and kovalev three four one called that ball Depot check it out I'm sure here in a minute we've seen a half dozen combined in this match yeah and that's when you have all this cross-court dinking you that is a danger of going too wide because that.

You know we talked about you don't have to go over that just get it over there somehow and four four two you turn a what you think's a good ball into a big opportunity for your opponent foreign will certainly take it they reeled off four straight to.

Get this thing back to square yeah it was looking like they could have been down six at the switch and now at worse they'd be down too and have the chance obviously if they get the ball back to have the lead point and mentally that's a big thing I'm switching sides and I know I'm closer to the Finish Line than they are.

Even if it's just one or two that's a big thing to take to that side switch well okay and now Jay davilia wants to have the ball switched out Irvin always bounces the ball a lot before she serves but this is uh just making sure that new ball is ready.

To go breaking in it a little bit well if it's a brand new ball you definitely want to do that to just give it a little wear before you get a point started head to the net we'll move it to the second server that durafast 40 it's a durable Ball but I'm gonna guess it lasts a little bit longer in in My.

Overall play than it does in these tournaments there's no doubt about that Dave you could probably use one for a long time these guys go through them quickly obviously weather affects that too as you said if it gets hotter the ball plays slower that's going to take us to the side.

Switch Irvin and davilier leading it 6-4 in this decisive third game well back at the beard Wealth Management Open kovalova and Wright Irvin and Davila this has been a fun match between these two teams a couple of good veteran pickleball mixed Pro doubles team six four two and on the side switch Urban and devillier.

With that two-point advantage nope but you get the side out I guess that's the one thing you get the side switch and you are down two but you only because it's the second server you only got to break him once to get the sir back yeah you never know what state you will be in when you switch in this case.

They were only on a second server and then got it back quickly so can they Forge a tire Take the Lead they have not had the lead in this third game trailed four nothing early came back and tied it at four six two and now moved to 4-6-2 great job by Irvin on that last one reaching into the kitchen and the serve going back over to Irving.

And devillier with the two-point lead and here you see again if if kovaleva goes down the line that ball has to bounce because Wright does not expect it to go there so he doesn't have time to fill the middle foreign move to the second serve following this one we will have the other semi-final.

Coming your way Anna Lee Waters and Finn John's taking a Kelly Smith and AJ Kohler the winners of both semifinals will advance to Championship Sunday oh and you saw Jesse take a deep breath like I didn't really mean to go into the what's usually a no-go zone for right but she gets a mistake.

Please ATP that time Matt Wright couldn't defend it she's so good at it and govalova keeps rolling that topspin cross court and it the Top Spin pushes it even wider as well so you have to be patient with an ATP you got to let it roll out and bounce as far as it can travel so you.

Can slap it literally like a racquetball shot Irvin done it perfectly there and look at that they've got him doubled up yeah couple over and right they didn't have to use the timeout we were speculating about earlier so this is their first time out there one more available Urban intervalia have yet to use one but.

It's not gone well since the since they had that 4-4 tie and here's what we were talking about with the rest of the bracket so you'll call her and Smith against Johnson Waters in The Other semi-final and that was the final at the prior tournament the Tournament of Champions up in Utah.

Took that best of five and three straight time in eight four two Irvin and kovalova davilia gets into the action and it results in a win so you know that that area that's safe for kovalova Narrows go too wide ATP for Jesse go in the middle.

Jocelyn davilier forehand so and now Matt Wright tries to do too much by taking a ball before that cross-court rally goes and look where we're at match points Irvin and davilier 10-4-2 it is the second serve so if you can get one stop you got a chance but that's not going to go that way it's going to go long and it's going to go in.

Favor of Irvin and davilia for the second time today they've won a three-game match this time 11-4 5 11 11 4 over the number one ranked team in the world just pure joy at the end of that match they played brilliantly especially once we switched side Steve they were in complete Command and again Irvin winning that cross-court battle with kovalova.

Davilier playing clean clean clean pickleball being aggressive in the middle really impressive well-earned trip to Championship Sunday and that opens up the door for the number two ranked team in the world Waters and John's to close the gap in the standings because they still can advance to the finals and win the.

Championship in Cincinnati but they're gonna have to first in their semifinal get past Smith and Kohler they are and again we talked about this is a grand slam so even more of those points are on the table here so getting that finals birth for devillier and Irvin is Big we'll step aside the lintner family Tennis Center has more extra to come.

After this timeout well welcome back everyone we're getting to see pickleball as hot as the Sun out here today Jesse Irvin Jay davilier you guys are through to Championship Sunday and Matt and Lucy have given you guys some trouble in the past but you just looked better today what went into K to making this so special yeah you know a.

Very tough team they play very well there's the number one seed so you know at that point uh Jesse and I came in with a good strategy and uh and the goal was uh to do my job and Jesse does you know do her job then and when we do that usually we played pretty well so I'm excited that uh we could win today well he says do his job and you do your job.

What is your job Jesse just to make balls and like honestly just to keep it as unattackable as possible and then like when I have my opportunities to attack then I will because I do have power um but you know I'm very good at danking I like to use that to my advantage and uh yeah I just keep doing that and then.

Try to set him up as much as I can and just keep hitting as many balls in the court as I can well they played you a lot tougher in game two how tough is it mentally to have to claw your way back after winning game one losing game two you know for me I don't think that's very tough I I knew that they were going to elevate and play better after losing.

The first game um our job was to elevate as well in the third game I think we uh we were off a good start we started 4-0 when they come they came back and we we managed to close 6-4 so I think that was big to uh to take the lead on the third but you know again like those games are so close so it's really up in the air at that.

Point what was electric to watch whether you we can't wait to see you both compete on Championship Sunday and with that we're headed to our next semi-final in just a few minutes here you're going to see Ben Johns and Anna Lee Waters take on AJ Kohler and Cali Smith
Watch as Jessie Irvine and Jay Devilliers take on Matt Wright and Lucy Kovalova