Long Island tennis fans should keep a keen eye on the men's doubles draw and the boys singles draw at Wimbledon this week, as two of their own will be participating on the historic stage at the All-England Lawn Tennis Club in pursuit of a major title.
Scott Lipsky, 31, a 10-year pro who attended Bellmore JFK High School, will compete at Wimbledon for the seventh time, and this year holds the No. 10 doubles seed in the tournament with his partner, Santiago Gonzalez of Mexico.
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Also competing is Rockville Centre's Noah Rubin, the 17-year-old, 27th-ranked junior player, according to the International Tennis Federation, who will vie for the boys singles championship after reaching the round of 16 in the juniors at the French Open last month.
"Wimbledon is my favorite tournament of the year," Lipsky said. "Just with the history of it and being in London is exciting."
Lipsky and Gonzalez are fresh off winning the Gerry Weber Open in Halle, Germany -- a grass-court Wimbledon tuneup won on the singles side by Roger Federer.
"Any time you win a tournament on the ATP tour, it's good," Lipsky said. "We thought we played really well in Halle, so to get more matches in on grass leading up to Wimbledon is a good thing."
They won their first title together at the Barcelona Open in 2011 when they beat the top-ranked pair of brothers Bob and Mike Bryan (USA) in the final. They teamed up again after last year's Wimbledon, where Lipsky and former doubles partner Rajeev Ram reached the quarterfinals, and since have won four tournaments and reached three semifinals together.
"[Gonzalez and I] had a pretty good year, we've won four tournaments and made a couple of semifinals, and we enjoy playing together," Lipsky said. "We're good friends off the court, which is important in a doubles team because you have to enjoy being out on the court with someone, as well."
Lipsky and Gonzalez were knocked out in the opening round at both the Australian Open in January and at last month's French Open, but won the Portugal Open before the French. That victory with their most recent win in Halle makes them the seventh-ranked doubles pair in the world.
Lipsky, who won a major title in mixed doubles at the French Open in 2011, currently has a career-best ranking of No. 21 in the world as a doubles player.
"We hope to at least do as well as our seeding," Lipsky said of his Wimbledon expectations. "I think we have the ability to do well. We've beaten a few of the top teams and had close matches with the Bryan Brothers, the No. 1 team, this year, so if we're playing well, we have the ability to do well this tournament."
Lipsky, who played for Stanford, now lives and trains in California, but said his Long Island roots are still intact.
"I spent my whole childhood on Long Island and lived there until I graduated from college," he said. "I played tennis there, I went to high school there, I have good friends there and my mom and grandmother still live there. Everything I am is from Long Island."