Daniil Medvedev and Stefanos Tsitsipas knocked out of the French Open
(Tennis news) Stefanos Tsitsipas’ French Open dreams came to a disappointing end as the Greek player was eliminated by Danish teenager Holger Rune 7-5 3-6 6-3 6-4. The 19 year old had not won a single match at a major since arriving in Paris and had to save three break points in the final game before getting over the line. The Danish tennis player will take on fellow Scandinavian Casper Ruud in the last eight.
Speaking after the match, Rune said “I have an unbelievable feeling. I was so nervous in the end. I was very nervous. I told myself to keep at it and play my plan. I mean it is so great to still be here. Part of the tactic was to play as aggressive as possible, when he gets shorter balls he attacks them. I really liked playing the drop shots and it worked out pretty good so I am happy."
Meanwhile, World Number 2 and US Open champion Daniil Medvedev lost to Marin Cilic 6-2 6-3 6-2. The Russian was recently sidelined with a hernia surgery and that may have played a role in his defeat to the Croatian veteran, being dominated from start to finish in what can only be considered a disappointing loss. Cilic said “It was an absolutely fantastic match from the first point to the last. I enjoyed the atmosphere and enjoyed the night session here. I played incredible tennis - one of the best matches of my career from start to finish."
Casper Ruud overcame Poland's Hubert Hurkacz 6-2 6-3 3-6 6-3 to reach his maiden Grand Slam quarter-final. The Norwegian has been one of the most consistent players on clay, winning seven out of his last eight titles on the surface but has been eliminated in the third round of Roland Garros in 2019, 2020 and 2021. Speaking after the match, Ruud said “It feels great, it was one of my goals this year. I feel more experienced playing best of five sets. Hubert has improved a lot on clay, he has become a dangerous player on all surfaces; he has a dangerous serve but I did well at returning it today."
Italian tennis player Jannik Sinner was forced off injured against Andrey Rublev. The 20 year old was hoping for his second quarter-final since 2020 and won the opening set 6-1 before sustaining a knee injury which led him to lose 6-4 in the second set. Rublev was 2-0 up in the third set before Sinner withdrew from the match. The Italian said “I felt good or quite ok in the first set and after serving at 2-1 (in the second) I felt something from that point.”
Novak Djokovic progresses to the semi-finals of the Italian Open
(Tennis news) Novak Djokovic secured his 999th career victory with a straight sets victory over Felix Auger-Aliassime. The Serbian triumphed over his Canadian opponent 7-5 7-6 (7-1) and will now face Casper Ruud for a spot in the finals after the Norwegian won 7-6 (9-7) 7-5 against Denis Shapovalov.
Speaking after the match, Djokovic said “I thought it was high-level tennis. He did ask me to raise the level and I had to play consistently well. I thought I could have finished the job earlier... but credit to him for fighting back. Amazing atmosphere as well tonight. I know Felix well. He's been around the top of the men's game for quite a few years. He's got a lethal serve, honestly... He's hitting his spots in the box incredibly well with the serve, and it was not easy for me at all to return. He's also returning well, he's moving well. He's a very complete player.”
In the other semi-final, Stefanos Tsitsipas will take on Alexander Zverev after the pair defeated Jannik Sinner and Chilean Cristian Garin. Tsitsipas won 7-6 (7-5) 6-2, with Zverev, who is ranked third, progressing 7-5 6-2. In the women’s category, reigning champion Iga Swiatek will take on Aryna Sabalenka after defeating Bianca Andreescu 7-6 (7-2) 6-0. The result meant that Swiatek extended her winning streak to 26 matches while Sabalenka beat Amanda Anisimova 4-6 6-3 6-2.
In other results, Ons Jabeur upset World Number 4 Maria Sakkari 1-6 7-5 6-1. She will play Daria Kasatkina, who defeated 6-4 3-2 against Jil Teichmann after the Swiss tennis player was forced to retire due to a thigh injury.
Swiatek and Djokovic progress to quarter-finals while Nadal knocked out
(Tennis news) Iga Swiatek and Novak Djokovic progressed to the quarter-finals of the Italian Open while Denis Shapovalov defeated Rafael Nadal. Swiatek, who is aiming for her fifth consecutive title, defeated Victoria Azarenka 6-4 6-1 while Novak Djokovic defeated Stan Wawrinka in straight sets 6-2 6-2. As for Nadal, the Spaniard started strongly against Shapovalov, winning the first set 6-1 but the 23 year old levelled the game. In the decider, Nadal appeared to be in visible discomfort and struggled to cope with the match.
During the post match press conference, Nadal spoke about his injury by saying “I had my foot again with a lot of pain, and that's it. (The pain) is sometimes more, sometimes less. Today was crazy. I am not injured. I am a player living with an injury. That's it. (This) is nothing new. It's something that is there. Unfortunately my day-by-day is difficult, honestly. Even like this, I am trying hard. Of course, it's difficult for me to accept the situation sometimes. What can happen in the next couple of days, I don't know. What can happen in one week, I really don't know now. It's time to accept the situation and fight. That's it."
Swiatek saved eight out of 11 breakpoints as the first set took 79 minutes. However, the Polish tennis player picked up momentum in the second set and will now face Bianca Andreescu in the next round. Swiatek’s result means that the Pole extended her winning streak to 25 matches, the longest run since Serena Williams won 27 straight games in 2015. She will now face former US Open champion Bianca Andreescu who defeated Petra Martic 6-4 6-4 while Aryna Sabalenka overcame Jessica Pegula 6-1 6-4.
Speaking after the match, Swiatek said “For sure I didn't start well, and everybody could see that. I'm really happy with the way I reacted and how I improved in the first set. Also how different the second set looked to the first one because I could really reset and really change the way I played. That's the most positive thing for me."
World Number 1 Novak Djokovic defeated Stan Wawrinka 6-2 6-2 to reach the quarter-finals of the Italian Open. The Serbian will now face eighth seed Felix Auger-Aliassime who defeated Marcos Giron 6-3 6-2. Speaking after the match, Djokovic said “It's great to see Stan back. He won two tough matches and you could see he's not physically where he wants to be. But, nevertheless, he's Stan Wawrinka, he can hurt you if you give him time and I managed to do well I think. From the beginning I really moved him around the court and held my serve pretty comfortably, except for that loss of serve in the second set."
In other results, Alexander Zverev defeated Alex De Minaur 6-3 7-6 (7-5) while Stefanos Tsitsipas overcame Karen Khachanov 4-6 6-0 6-3 despite being a set down and will now face Jannik Sinner in the next round.
Stefanos Tsitsipas to face Alexander Zverev in Monte Carlo semi-finals
(Tennis news) After surviving a first set blip, Alexander Zverev broke Jannik Sinner’s resilience to win the match 5-7 6-3 7-6 and progress into the semi-finals. The German fought back twice from a break down in the third set as it went into a tiebreaker, which he won 7-5. The result means that second seeded Zverev will now face fifth rank Stefanos Tsitsipas who defeated Diego Schwartzman 6-2, 6-7, 6-4.
The Greek tennis player easily won the first set but failed to capitalise on a 5-2 lead in the second, only to make a stunning comeback after being 4-0 down to win six games on the trot. Zverev was given a suspended eight week ban from ATP sanctioned events after being thrown out of the Acapulco Open for repeatedly hitting the umpires chair. Speaking after the match, Zverev said “It means a lot, definitely, especially (with) how this year has been going so far for me. I've lost long matches like that, so I'm happy I won this one."
In other results, Alejandro Davidovich Fokina of Spain reached his first Masters semi-final after defeating American Taylor Fritz 2-6 6-4 6-3. The Spaniard will take on Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov who defeated Hubert Hurkacz of Poland 6-4, 3-6, 7-6. Dimitrov dropped two points in the deciding set before taking it 7-2 in the tiebreak.
Jamie Murray and Joe Salisbury also progressed to the men’s doubles semi-final with their partners. Murray and India’s Rohan Bopanna overcame third seeds Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos 7-6 (8) 7-6 (8) and will now face Salisbury and America's Rajeev Ram who won 6-4 6-3 against Tim Puetz and Michael Venus.
Bublik defeats Wawrinka in the first round of the Monte Carlo Masters
(Tennis news) After returning from injury from a 13 month layoff, three time Grand Slam champion Stan Wawrinka made a losing return to the ATP tour after being defeated by Alexander Bublik in the first round of the Monte Carlo Masters 3-6 7-5 6-2. The 37 year old was sidelined due to a foot injury but managed to stretch his opponent to three sets before succumbing to a loss.
Speaking after the match, Wawrinka said “I think the body's getting much better. I'm still far away from where I want to be, but I think I'm (going in) the right direction. I think today was a positive match. It was a tough loss, of course, but I'm happy with the way I was playing." Meanwhile, Jannik Sinner defeated Borna Coric 6-3 2-6 6-3 in two and a half hours. The World Number 12 shrugged off an apparent stomach injury midway in the match after a difficult second set.
In other results, veteran tennis player Marin Cilic defeated Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 6-2 6-2 while Diego Schwartzman overcame Karen Khachanov 6-7 (5) 6-3 6-3 and Pablo Carreno Busta progressed to the next round with a 6-4 4-6 6-2 win over Sebastien Baez. Sebastian Korda defeated Botic van de Zandschulp in straight sets while Hubert Hurkacz, Fabio Fognini and Alex de Minaur also won their respective matches.
Casper Ruud defeats Francisco Cerundolo to reach Miami Open finals
(Tennis news) Norwegian tennis player Casper Ruud secured his place in his first Masters 1000 final with a 6-4 6-1 win over Francisco Cerundolo in the semi finals of the Miami Open. The World Number 8 took one hour and 34 minutes to secure the win and got the decisive break of serve in the 10th game of the opening set. Argentinian player Cerundolo, currently ranked 103rd was then outclassed in the second set.
The 23 year old Casper Ruud progressed to the semi finals of the Miami Open after a three-set win over Alexander Zverev while Cerundolo reached the last four in his Masters 1000 debut after Reilly Opelka and Jannik Sinner were forced to retire due to injury. "It was a tough match, even though the scoreline said two straight sets," Ruud said. "It was tough."
Meanwhile, Carlos Alcaraz became the second youngest Miami Open finalist in history after defeating Hubert Hurkacz 7-6 (5), 7-6 (2) on Friday. The youngest finalist was Rafael Nadal, a month younger than his compatriot Carlos Alcaraz, the tournament was called NASDAQ-100 Open and Nadal lost that five setter match to Roger Federer. Alcaraz will be hoping to win his second title of the season so far, having already secured the 2022 Rio Open in February where he only lost a single set in the whole tournament.
Alcaraz shocks Tsitsipas at the Miami Open while Kyrgios crashes out
(Tennis news) At just 18 years of age, Carlos Alcaraz defeated World Number 5 Stefanos Tsitsipas in straight sets 7-5 6-3 in a match that took almost two hours at the Miami Open. It was a rematch between the pair as they faced each other at the US Open and the Spanish teenager emerged victorious in that clash as well.
Speaking after the match, Alcaraz said “It was really, really tough. He was playing unbelievable. All I can say is I fought until the last ball in the first set [to] come back.” The Spaniard will now face Miomir Kecmanovic in the quarter-finals after the 22 year old Serbian defeated Taylor Fritz 3-6 6-1 6-4. Earlier, Nick Kyrgios crashed out of the Miami Open after receiving a game penalty in the fourth round clash against Jannik Sinner. The Australian constantly vented out to the umpire Carlos Bernardes in a tight first set.
Kyrgios went on to lose the tie-break after being docked a point for smashing his racquet and double faulting and was docked a game after smashing his racquet again in the second set before succumbing to a 7-6 (3) 6-3 defeat. The Australian yelled to Bernardes “What is unsportsmanlike? I just don't think he controls the crowd well at all, in my personal opinion. People can have their opinions on it. I just don't think my point penalty was worth a point penalty."
The result also means that Cameron Norrie’s chances of breaking into the top 10 rankings this week look slim, as the British tennis player lost 6-3, 6-4 to Norway’s Casper Ruud. Playing with a heavy strapping on his left leg, Norrie couldn’t replicate his form that he had displayed earlier in the tournament and failed to manage a single break-point against the Norwegian World Number 8 until he converted three in the eighth game of the second set.
Meanwhile, Daniil Medvedev needs just one more win to reclaim the World Number 1 spot after progressing to the quarter-finals with a 7-5 6-1 win over Jenson Brooksby. The Russian was forced to rally from 5-3 down in the first set to book a place in the last eight. In the women’s tournament, Naomi Osaka progressed to the quarter-finals after defeating Danielle Collins in straight sets 6-2 6-1. The Japanese tennis player, currently ranked 77th defeated the World Number 11 for the second time, the first being at the Indian Wells in 2019 when Osaka was World Number 1 and Collins was 25th. Osaka will face Belinda Bencic of Switzerland in the semi-finals.
Rafael Nadal overcomes Opelka to reach Indian Wells quarter-finals
(Tennis news) Rafael Nadal claimed his 18th consecutive win this season after defeating Reilly Opelka 7-6 (7-3) 7-6 (7-5) to progress to the quarter-finals of the Indian Wells on Wednesday. Only Novak Djokovic has had a better record than Nadal; the Serbian won 26-0 to begin 2020 and won 41 consecutive games in 2011.
Opelka served nine aces as compared to Nadal’s six, but the 21 time Grand Slam winner used his experience to progress into the next round. At 6 feet 11 inches, Opelka served at 140 mph and produced some trademark big shots, but Nadal withstood the attack and produced some incredible winners of his own. The Spaniard is targeting a fourth title in the California desert.
Speaking after the match, Nadal said “It's difficult because it's not only about the speed. It's difficult to read his serve because the serve is sometimes with a topspin, sometimes slice. At the same time it's not enough just to put the ball in because then he has a huge forehand. So it's a great victory for me against one of the toughest opponents that I can play."
In other results, World Number 6 Matteo Berrettini lost to unseeded Serbian Miomir Kecmanovic 6-3 6-7 (5-7) 6-4 to set up a quarter-final clash against Taylor Fritz. It was only the second time that Kecmanovic progressed to the quarter-finals of the tournament; the Serbian absorbed his opponent’s power swerve in the first set and converted on the break-point chance in the fourth game.
Late in the second set, Kecmanovic failed to close the match as a break-point opportunity slipped through his fingers. Berrettini struck 21 winners to win a tense tie-break to level the score and saved two breaks in the eighth game in a tightly fought final, only for Kecmanovic to pounce on the Italian’s serve to love in the final game. The Serbian will play against Fritz, who defeated Australian Alex de Minaur 3-6 6-4 7-6 (7-5).
In other results, Australian Nick Kyrgios advanced to the next round after getting a walkover from Italian Jannik Sinner who was forced to withdraw from the tournament due to illness. Grigor Dimitrov progressed to the quarter-finals for the second consecutive year after defeating John Isner 6-3 7-6 (7-6).
Vesely stops Djokovic in Dubai, Rublev looks for first win against Hurkacz
(Tennis news) Jiri Vesely recorded a historic win over Novak Djokovic in the quarterfinals of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships. Vesley now has 2 wins against Djokovic as the Serbian is yet to secure a win in their career head to head meetings. There were service breaks by both players in the first four games of the match after which the Czech held his serve with powerful backhands and disguised dropshots.
In the second set, the world number 123 had faster serves than the earlier set which made him finish the points early. Even though the world number 1 served more aces in the second set, the left hander was more aggressive and even had a front facing tweener to win the point. Vesley’s serve reached speeds of 225 km/hour in the second set and his average second serve was around 180 km/ hour while for Djokovic it was 153 km/ hour. Daniil Medvedev will ascend to the top of the rankings on monday as he will face Rafael Nadal in the semifinals at Acapulco.
“It is an amazing feeling,” Vesely said in his on-court interview. “I never really thought I would have a chance against Novak. He is one of the greatest of all time. After the past 12 months, it is unbelievable. I have so many emotions inside. It is hard to describe. It is an amazing feeling.”
Hubert Hurkacz entered the semifinals in Dubai for the first time with a straight set victory over Jannik Sinner. Hurkacz had reached the quarterfinals in 2019 where he lost to Stefanos Tsitsipas, the Polish number one who will face Andrey Rublev for a place in the final. In the quarterfinal, the 25 year old placed the ball perfectly whenever Sinner failed to hit it with his punishing speed. The 20 year old was broken thrice in the match but could not get a single break not even a breakpoint as the service games gave Hurkacz the lead in the match. Hurkacz defeated Sinner 6-3, 6-3.
Andrey Rublev reached the last four for the second consecutive time in Dubai. Rublev beat Mackenzie McDonald as he had lost to the American three years ago at the Australian Open. This time, Mackenzie started well with 10 winners in the first set as Rublev had 4 and the 26 won the net points on all five occasions coming forward. Mackenzie broke thrice in the first set as the world number 7 managed to break once, in the second set both players had three breakpoints as the 24 year old converted two of them and saved all three points on serve.
In the third set, there were a handful of volleys as it was all baseline power hitting. The world number 61 stood no chance as Rublev only hit 1 unforced error and lost a single point out of 13 in his first serves. Rublev will look for his first against Hurkacz in their third career meeting. Rublev defeated Mackenzie 2-6, 6-3, 6-1.
Mackenzie McDonald sends Aslan Karatsev packing in opening round at Dubai
(Tennis news) Mackenzie McDonald was playing at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships for the first time. He had a tough draw and was pitted against Aslan Karatsev in the opening round; the pair had met a month earlier at the Australian Open where Karatsev came out on top in four sets. The curtains came down early for the Russian as Mackenzie looked faster and stronger than his opponent, the defending champion was playing here for the second time after his strong run last year.
Karatsev was not looking sharp as usual and could not find a way to tackle the American’s serve. In the first set, Mackenzie served 8 aces and was behind in the number of winners but covered the margin in terms of unforced errors. Court coverage was also missing from the 28 year old while the world number 61 did not think twice in chasing the ball around the court. Mackenzie defeated Karatsev 7-5, 6-3.
Jannik Sinner has played 9 matches this year so far and has only lost one, he lost to Stefanos Tsitsipas at the Australian Open. Sinner has only played in hardcourt events so far in the 2022 season, this time in Dubai he had to down three match points against Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in the opening round. Fokina was much more agile in the first two sets than Sinner as he got to most of the balls and kept overpowering the Italian in the rallies.
The word number 10 tried to be aggressive but the Spaniard had the final answer as he took the first set. In the second set, it seemed like the Italian was slowly building his power as he had to defend three match points in the tiebreak. The first match point was saved in a defensive rally by the 20 year old as the world number 42 hit an inside out forehand long, the second one was saved by a 203 km/ ace and the third one was all due to the reliability on Sinner’s backhand which returned the ball perfectly.
The 22 year old lost his form in the deciding set as Sinner began attacking especially from his backhand. The 5 time title winner had 2 winners in the first and in the next two sets he hit 22 winners as he finished the match with an attacking forehand. Sinner defeated Fokina 4-6, 7-6(6), 6-3.
“It was a very tough match,” said Sinner after completing the comeback. “I know Davidovich Fokina, but we’ve never played against each other. It was the first time for both of us and it was a tricky one, saving three match points. On the first one I got lucky because it was out, but not so far out.”
Ruud beats home favourite Schwartzman to win first title of the season
(Tennis news) Casper Ruud took the title at Buenos Aires as he was playing on tour after a month since playing at the ATP cup. Ruud is now unbeaten at the Argentina Open, he entered the main draw in 2020 and went on to lift the title; this time he did not drop a set on the way to the final. While it was the second win for the Norwegian at the event, runner up Diego Schwartzman has been reaching the quarterfinals or better since 2018. He was the runner up in 2019 and won the title last year.
The defending champion had a tough run to the final after losing a set in the last two matches and battling a two set tiebreaker in the opening match. Schwartzman had last reached a final three months ago at Antwerp where he lost to Jannik Sinner whereas Ruud was on a 5 match winning streak in the finals which started last year. Ruud had won his first tour title at the event two years ago where he beat Pedro Sousa in the final, Sousa had a walkover in the semifinal against Schwartzman.
The world number 8 had a set point in the first set which took 42 shots for the Argentine to overcome and save the set in the most suited fashion. The first break came in the 10th game as the home crowd favourite took four straight points to set the match up and running. In the second set, Ruud got the break in the 6th game with a cheeky shot at the net and well timed forehands during the breakpoint. After taking the second set, the 23 year old took an early lead which led to another break as he completed the victory in 2 hours and 35 minutes. Ruud defeated Schwartzman 5-7, 6-2, 6-3.
“It’s been an unbelievable week," said Ruud after sealing his seventh ATP Tour title. "To come back here and try to defend the title not from last year but from two years ago has been a challenge, and I enjoyed every minute of it.”
The pair has now met 4 times on clay with Schwartzman winning the first two meetings, overall the 29 year still leads their career head to head meeting with 5 wins as Ruud has won thrice. The result has pushed the ranking by one place ahead for Schwartzman as he is now ranked 14 below Cameron Norrie. Ruud is still behind Andrey Rublev at number 8 and the Russian leads by over 600 points.
Matteo Berrettini moves to career best number 6 in ATP rankings
(Tennis news) The 2022 Australian Open has given the boost in rankings in the WTA and the ATP tour. Matteo Berrettini moved closer to the top 5 as he is now one place below Rafael Nadal in the rankings. Berrettini has 5,278 points as of now and was number before the semi final run at Australia.
Berrettini had cracked the top 100 for the first time in 2018 and entered the top 50 next year since then it has been a steady rise. The 25 year old then cracked the top 10 in a gap of eight months after the top 50 climb, the only route he has taken for the past 4 years is upwards. The Italian has his country mate in the top 10 as Jannik Sinner is ranked at 10. While Berrettini has made his move in the Grand Slams, Sinner has been going through the Masters and also progressing in the majors.
Berrettini has reached quarter finals or more in the last four Grand Slams and lost to Novak Djokovic in three of them while it was Rafael Nadal at Australia. The 2021 season was the best for Berrettini as he finished the year with 41 wins and 12 losses of which 8 was by a player in the top ten.
There has not been major changes at the top in the men’s ranking as Novak Djokovic held his top spot even after missing the Australian Open. Daniil Medvedev will again try to get on top of the rankings which has been at the control of the big four for a long time. Medvedev had his chances last year at Wimbledon and at Roland Garros but Djokovic winning the titles in both the places did not help the Russian’s cause.
Gael Monfils will have a crack at the top ten after a 2 year gap as he rose four places to be in the 16th position now. Monfils was ranked as high as 6 in 2016 after which there was not much consistency from the player. Denis Shapovalov also jumped two places to be ranked 12 as he lost the top ten status in August after a string of losses, the Canadian was close to recording an upset over Nadal at Australia. Canada has Felix Auger-Aliassime who has been in number 9 for over 3 weeks now, the 21 year old was number 10 for a week in December last year and now has been maintaining the position. Roger Federer is ranked at 30, he is out of the top 25 after 20 years as he was last ranked 30 in 2001.
Medvedev, Berrettini have it tough to enter last four at Australia
(Tennis news) Matteo Berrettini created history at the 2022 Australian Open by becoming the first Italian to reach the semifinals at Melbourne. Daniil Medvedev too had his feathers rustled by Felix Auger Aliassime in the quarterfinals as the opening slam of the year is now coming to an end. The mixed doubles final will be the first one to get over as it will get over tomorrow.
In men’s singles, Berrettini secured his 3rd victory over Gael Monfils in as many meetings as the world number 7 will now face Rafael Nadal for a place in the final. Berrettini was serving and hitting well in the first two sets as it was power against speed; a single breakpoint in both sets was enough for him to take a 2 set lead against Monfils. The Frenchmen then won the next two sets as one breakpoint was enough to pocket the third set and had 7 chances but could only win 2 in the next.
Berrettini was drained of his energy but gained all of it back in the final set with a rock solid 4-0 lead. Monfils was fast but could not run up to his opponent’s net play and ended his run at the major after 3 hours and 45 minutes. Berrettini defeated Monfils 6-4, 6-4, 3-6, 3-6, 6-2.
“It feels unbelievable,” Berrettini said in his on-court interview. “I am really happy for myself. I thought I had him in the third set and then I found myself in the fifth. But I really fought hard and put everything on the court and that is why I am really happy.”
Rafael Nadal entered the semifinals at Melbourne for the 7th time with a 5 set win against Denis Shapovalov. It was a four hour marathon between the two left handers and Nadal started well on serve by taking the first two sets. Shapovalov had complained to the umpire in between the match about Nadal taking too much time between the points as both the players came to the net to talk about it.
The third and fourth set saw Nadal being pushed away from victory as the Canadian made sure his opponent would suffer in the heat. The Spaniard answered back in the deciding set by taking the first 3 games and went on to win the set to enter the last four. Nadal defeated Shapovalov 6-3, 6-4, 4-6, 3-6, 6-3.
Daniil Medvedev had to spend more time on the court than Nadal and Berrettini as he was playing against Felix Auger Aliassime. Felix continued the same form he had while winning the ATP Cup, the world number 9 had only taken a set in their last three meetings and was bageled in the second set of the ATP cup semifinal against Medvedev.
Felix took the first two sets and was comfortably looking at a semifinal spot until Medvedev gave no chance in the third set tiebreaker. The world number 2 then saved a matchpoint in the fourth set at 4-5 and got himself out of the tense situation to take the match to the deciding set. A break in the fourth game bailed him out as it was now Felix who tried to get himself back on track but could not make it back to shore. Medvedev defeated Felix 6-7(4-7), 3-6, 7-6(7-2), 7-5, 6-4.
“I was not playing my best and Felix was playing unbelievably,” Medvedev said in his on-court interview. He was serving unbelievably, he was all over me. When they closed the roof I felt the momentum change, that I could hit through the court better.”
Stefanos Tsitsipas was the only player who had a straight set win in the quarterfinals as the other three had to play 5 setters to enter the last four. The Greek god took 2 hours to beat Jannik Sinner who had no chance of giving Berrettini company. Tsitsipas looked more powerful than Sinner as the groundstrokes were considerably charged up in most of the rallies. The 20 year old only gave away 4 breakpoints in the match but that was enough to complete a quality victory. Tsitsipas defeated Sinner 6-3, 6-4, 6-2.
Australian Open 2022: Medvedev and Sabalenka leading the next gen attack
(Tennis news) After more than 120 days since the last Grand Slam, the 2022 season is ready for the Australian Open to take place at Melbourne. At the beginning of every year, there are new expectations from the next gen to take over the older generation and there are few players who will look to take over the trophy from the seniors.
Daniil Medvedev had beaten Novak Djokovic at the 2021 US Open final and Djokovic had beaten Medvedev in the final of Australia at the start of the year. This year, the Serbian is currently playing against the Australian government as he needs a victory to compete in the main draw. Meanwhile the Russian will be keen to add a second major to his pocket but will be facing a challenge from the rest of the rising stars. Alexander Zverev has not won a major title yet, he has won everything else including the Olympic gold and can join Andre Agassi and Rafael Nadal in winning all the major titles in the sport.
Nadal won the Melbourne Summer Set which was his first title at Australia in 13 years, his first title was the 2009 Australian Open. The Spaniard was beaten by Stefanos Tsistsipas in the quarterfinal last year and the Greek player will also be in line to get his first big title. Most of the next gen players have not played any matches so far, the players who have started with year in form would be Felix Auger Aliassime, Denis Shapovalov. The two Canadians have shown how much they grew as players and would be willing to do the same at Melbourne. Carlos Alcaraz, Jannik Sinner would also play till the final days of the event as they had a good run last year.
In the women’s singles, Ashleigh Barty will be aiming for a third Grand Slam overall and a first at home. While the Australian has her targets, Aryna Sabalenka can set a sight at a first major as well as the top ranking when she plays next week. Sabalenka reached the semifinals of the last two Grand Slams, the 23 year old can steal the thunder from Barty and it would be daring to do it in front of the home crowd. In the top 10 rankings, all the players are below 30 years and a few made their debuts in the single digit platform. Barbora Krejcikova took the Roland Garros by storm by winning the singles and doubles trophy; Krejcikova takes on Paula Badosa who is yet another debutant in the top 10 and certainly one of them to watch out.
Naomi Osaka will also make her return and if she is in form then there is no doubt about her taking home her 5th major. The Japanese player issued a walkover in the semifinal at Melbourne Summer Set a few days ago but is expected to play at the event. The Australian Open is set to start from January 17 and the audience would want to wear their seat belts as its going to be a bumpy start to the year.
Safiullin, Evans among the best players from the 2022 ATP Cup
(Tennis news) The third edition of the ATP Cup saw the young Canadians taking the title for the first time. The season opener gave the perfect start to the 2022 season as it saw many players giving all of their might to see their country winning. There were many senior and junior players who were in their zone on court as they proved to be an invaluable part of the team. Here are the top four players at the ATP Cup.
Roman Safiullin: Russia
When in Rome, do as the Romans do and that is what Safiullin exactly did. He formed a great duo with Daniil Medvedev in doubles and in singles he did what every player should for their country. Russia seemed to have lost its powerhouse as Rublev and Karatsev pulled which made way for Safiullin who unexpectedly became the hero for the team.
Safiullin became a fan favourite in the very first match against France when he defeated Arthur Rinderknech who was 120 places above him in the rankings. In the second match, the world number 167 secured his biggest win by beating James Duckworth and got his first top 50 win on tour. He lost the next two matches to Jannik Sinner and Denis Shapovalov but did his best to make them work hard for the win.
Safiullin and Medvedev were the lowest ranked doubles pair in every match they played but still won three matches and lost in the semifinals to Canada. Safiullin has been the latest Russia to make a mark in the sport and will hope to join the likes of Aslan Karatsev and Andrey Rublev.
Daniel Evans: Great Britain
Britain had everything at the event but luck as Canada’s victory over Germany put them out of the knockout stage. Evans played five matches in the ATP Cup and won every match dropping just one set in the final doubles match against USA. The world number 26 won all his singles matches beating Denis Shapovalov and John Isner in straight sets. He was the most valuable player for the team and partnered with Jamie Murray against Germany and USA.
Roberto Bautista Agut: Spain
Roberto led the Spanish team like a gladiator in every match. The 33 year old has been having fantastic starts to the season for the past 5 seasons piling up more than 40 wins and less than 10 losses. He won four matches and it was painful to watch the world number 17 lose in the final even after picking up two top 10 victories on the way.
Felix Auger-Aliassime: Canada
The Canadian team was led by two youngsters, the rising stars of the sport. Felix and Shapovalov were one the youngest players on the event, they carried the responsibility with quite a bit of maturity. The world number 9 defeated Cameron Norrie in the second match and also paired with Shapovalov to win the tie.
Felix played 5 singles matches and 3 doubles matches at the ATP Cup which showed the young Canadian had a lot of workload and pressure through the event. The doubles win against Russia put the team through the final and his win against Roberto gave the title to the team.
Russia prevail over Italy to reach semi finals of ATP Cup
(Tennis news) In day 6 the final group stages of the ATP Cup saw the top two teams of two groups qualify for the semifinal. The day also had exits from top two teams from Group C and B as Italy fell short of making it into the final stages even though they had a strong team and Britain missing out the spot by a whisker.
Russia defeated Italy 2-1
Russia picked up its biggest victory so far as they became the third team to qualify for the semifinals. Jannik Sinner put Italy on front with a top class performance over Roman Safiullin as the Russian could not handle the power of the next gen. In the second singles match, Daniil Medvedev kept the hopes alive with a three set win over Matteo Berrettini as he only committed 13 unforced errors and played it safe. The pressure was on Medvedev but the world number 2 did not let his country down after losing the second set, the final set saw the Russian excel as he kept the rallies long.
In the final doubles match, Medvedev and Safiullin were again in the danger zone after losing the first set but did not let the Italians celebrate in the next two sets as they will now aim for a second consecutive title.
Sinner defeated Safiullin 7-6(8-6), 6-3, Medvedev defeated Berrettini 6-2, 6-7(5-7), 6-4, Medvedev and Safiullin defeated Berrettini and Sinner 5-7, 6-4, 10-5.
Australia defeated France 2-1
France ended their journey in the event without a victory as Australia too reached the finish line with an inspiring victory. Arthur Rinderknech gave the home crowd bad news in the opening match as France got their first point, Alex De Minaur was” le destructeur” as he beat Ugo Humbert after losing the first set. In the second set, the Aussie lad saved crucial breakpoints to take the match into the final set. In the doubles, John Peers and Luke Saville saved three match points as they made sure not lose their way at home.
Rinderknech defeated James Duckworth 6-4, 7-6 (8-6), Alex defeated Humbert 3-6, 7-6(7-2), 6-1, Peers and Saville defeated Fabrice Martin and Edouard Roger-Vasselin 6-2, 5-7, 11-9.
Britain defeated USA 2-1
Britain had hopes of qualifying for the semifinal but it suffered a major breakdown in the first match. Cameron Norrie fell in the last few points of the match which proved to be crucial for the team as Taylor Fritz gave the first point to his team. In the second match, Daniel Evans resisted strong serves against John Isner to give the team chances for a semifinal finish with a win against John Isner. In the final match, Evans again played a key role with Jamie Murray to secure the final point of the tie.
Fritz defeated Norrie 7-6(7-4), 3-6, 6-1, Evans defeated Isner 6-4, 7-6(7-3), Evans and Murray defeated Fritz and Isner 6-7(7-3), 7-5, 10-8.
Canada defeated Germany 2-1
Canada put an end to Britain’s wait as they grabbed the final semifinal spot of the event. The two youngsters confirmed the victory in the first 5 hours of the match. Denis Shapovalov hit 10 plus winners in each set as the left hander did half the job but the next match was a difficult one. Felix Auger-Aliassime was up against Alexander Zverev as it was expected the German would halt the opposition from reaching the last four but Felix left it all out on court to clinch the match and the tie. The 21 year old lost 6 points at the net out of 23 and saved 7 breakpoints out of 9 to give the team a last four place. In the doubles match, Kevin Krawietz and Tim Puetz were too late as they won a point for the German side.
Shapovalov defeated Jan-Lennard Struff 7-6(7-5), 4-6, 6-3, Felix defeated Zverev 6-4, 4-6, 6-3, Kevin and Tim defeated Steven Diez and Brayden Schnur 6-3, 6-4.
France suffers second consecutive defeat in ATP Cup
(Tennis news) Day 4 of the ATP Cup witnessed Italy and Russia recording vital victories as the knockout stages are going to be held later this week. Group B and C played their matches and still have one more match to go before the semifinals.
Russia defeated Australia 3-0
Russia continued its title defence by blanking the home team for its second consecutive victory. Roman Safiullin gave the early lead once again by taking out James Duckworth in the first match. Daniil Medvedev got his first victory of the season by beating Alex De Minaur as the doubles saw both the Russian singles players pitting against seasoned doubles players and finished the ordeal.
Safiullin defeated Duckworth 7-6(8-6), 6-4, Medvedev defeated Minaur 6-4, 6-2, Medvedev and Safiullin defeated John Peers and Luke Saville 7-6(9-7), 3-6, 10-6.
Italy defeated 3-0 France
Italy recorded its first win of the event as it now hopes for a spot in the semifinal. France have confirmed their exit from the semifinal race with their second consecutive defeat as they are in the bottom place of Group B. Jannik Sinner gave the right signal at the start as he defeated Arthur Rinderknech in straight sets in which the second set was stretched to the tie break. In the second match, Matteo Berrettini confirmed their first victory as he beat Ugo Humbert. In the final doubles match, Berrettini and Sinner regrouped to make it three out of three.
Sinner defeated Rinderknech 6-3, 7-6(7-3), Berrettini defeated Humbert 6-4, 7-6(8-6), Sinner and Berrettini defeated Fabrice Martin and Edouard Roger-Vasselin 6-3, 6-7(7-9), 10-8.
Germany defeated USA 2-1
Jan-Lennard Struff came out on top against John Isner who hit 34 aces in the opening match which lasted over 3 hours. The second match saw Alexander Zverev take on Taylor Fritz and give the Germans the victory. In the final doubles match, Isner and Fritz did not let themselves be whitewashed as they bageled the first in their way to take the last point of the tie.
Struff defeated Isner 7-6(9-7), 4-6, 7-5, Zverev defeated Fritz 6-4, 6-4, Isner and Fritz defeated Kevin Krawietz and Tim Puetz 6-0, 6-3.
Canada defeated Britain 2-1
Group C has now seen the four teams win one match and lose the next as Canada got their first victory at the event. Daniel Evans gave Britain the first point as he won the match of single handed backhands against Denis Shapovalov who had not played the earlier match due to fatigue. Felix Auger-Aliassime then carried his form from the previous season to beat Cameron Norrie as Canada got back their hopes for a semifinal spot. In the doubles match, both the next gen players upset Joe Salisbury and Jamie Murray to end the tie with a crucial win.
Evans defeated Shapovalov 6-4, 6-4, Felix defeated Norrie 7-6, 6-3, Felix and Shapovalov defeated Salisbury and Murray 6-4, 6-1.
Australia overpower Italy as Humbert puts up a show against Russia in ATP Cup
(Tennis news) The second day of the ATP Cup got off to a startling start as the results ignored all the predictions. Russia seems to be the most motivated at the start of the season as joined by Australia. The teams will have to pull up their socks as the next round matches will have to be careful as it will determine the top positions in the group and any more prediction fails are expected tomorrow.
Russia defeated France 2-1
Ugo Humbert played one of the best matches at the event as he brought down world number 2 Daniil Medvedev as France got off to a shocking start. Russia’s Roman Safiullin got his inspiration from Humbert as he pulled off an upset win over Arthur Rinderknech to bring things back to normal. In the doubles, the pair of Medvedev and Safiullin pulled the plug for France for a final victory to seal the tie.
Humbert defeated Medvedev 6-7(7-5), 7-5, 7-6(7-2), Safiullin defeated Rinderknech 2-6, 7-5, 6-3, Medvedev and Safiullin defeated Fabrice Martin and Edouard Roger-Vasselin 6-4, 6-4.
Australia defeated Italy 2-1
The home crowds made sure their heroes did not lose in front of them as they cheered on when they beat the most powerful team in the event, Italy. Alex De Minaur's speed was too much for Matteo Berrerttini’s forehand as the Australian wore his cape to give his team an early lead. In the second match, Jannik Sinner took the perfect revenge over Max Purcell as he only gave away four games on his way to victory. The doubles killed all the suspense in the match as it gave the crowd a straight set win over Berrettini and Simone Bolelli.
De Minaur defeated Berrettini 6-3, 7-6(7-4), Sinner defeated Purcell 6-1, 6-3, John Peers and Luke Saville defeated Berrettini and Bolelli 6-3, 7-5.
USA defeated Canada 3-0
Taylor Fritz had to sweat it out for 2 and half hours as he got the much needed win against Felix Auger-Aliassime for the first point for the USA. Denis Shapovalov had to withdraw from the second singles match due to fatigue as Brayden Schnur replaced him and faced the giant John Isner who sealed the win for the team with a high intense performance. In the doubles, Shapovalov made a return with Felix only to be defeated by Fritz and Isner who showed no signs of tiredness from the earlier singles matches.
Fritz defeated Felix 6-7(6-8), 6-4, 6-4, Isner defeated Schnur 6-1, 6-3, Isner and Fritz defeated Shapovalov and Felix 6-4, 6-4.
Britain defeated Germany 2-1
Germany suffered a setback in the opening tie as for Britain things went just as they planned. In the first match, Cameron Norrie put up a good fight against Alexander Zverev in the first set but the next set was totally one sided to give Germany the first point. In the second match, it was a battle of 31 year olds where Daniel Evans played his heart out against Jan-Lennard Struff to come in line with Germany. In the third match, it was between two singles and doubles players as Kevin Krawietz partnered with Zverev and Jamie Murray got along with Evans. The German team lost in the final match to lose the tie as Britain played out a well designed and managed victory.
Zverev defeated Norrie 7-6(7-2), 6-1, Evans defeated Struff 6-1, 6-2, Jamie and Evans defeated Zverev and Krawietz 6-3, 6-4.
Sinner and Berrettini boost Italy's chances of maiden title at ATP Cup
(Tennis news) The third edition of the ATP Cup is due to start from January 1st 2022 as the 16 teams have been divided into four groups. Former champions Serbia will be without Novak Djokovic as defending champions Russia are also without Andrey Rublev, Aslan Karatsev and Evgeny Donskoy. There are strong chances for the third time that a team will get its maiden trophy. Italy seems to be one of the favourites as they have their top players participating. Here are the top four teams to watch out for at the season opening tournament.
Italy: Group B
The strongest team in the event has four players in top 40 including two players in the top 10 and a doubles player ranked in the top 25. Among the top three ranked singles players, the oldest is Lorenzo Sonego who is 26 as the youngest is Jannik Sinner aged 20. Sinner and Matteo Berrettini will be leading the attack in singles as Simone Bolelli can team up with Sonego or Fabio Fognini for the final blow in doubles.
They can run into trouble against Daniil Medvedev when they play against Russia other than that Italy can finish as table toppers or can come second behind Russia. Group B will be one of the most competitive as compared to the rest of the groups as France and Australia will take every opportunity they get.
Great Britain: Group C
Britain has a complete set up for singles and doubles as they have seasoned players to stir up trouble. Cameron Norrie alongside Daniel Evans will be on the singles front while Joe Salisbury and Jamie Murray will be up for the doubles matches. Norrie has been the top player on his team this season and if the matches go till the decider then their doubles pair are also capable of making a comeback.
They can face tough competition from Germany as Alexander Zverev will be making the move in singles, Canada can pose problems with Felix Auger-Aliassime and Denis Shapovalov forming a match winning singles combination. Britain will also be facing the US team which can field Taylor Fritz and out of form John Isner in their attack; they also have doubles multiple Grand Slam winner Rajeev Ram and next gen star Brandon Nakashima.
Spain: Group A
Spain will be playing without their hero Rafael Nadal but has Tokyo Olympics Bronze medalist and world number 20 Pablo Carreno Busta who is ranked just one below Roberto Bautista Agut. Their singles squad looks to be sorted but the doubles pair will have to be tested as youngsters Alejandro Davidovich Fokina and Pedro Martinez will have to provide support for the team.
The seniors in the team will have to do double duty as it will get tiring but if their singles matches go well then the workload will vanish. They will be up against Chile in the opening match as Spain will also play against Norway and Serbia.
Argentina: Group D
The team has the oldest players on their side with their youngest player being 29 years old. Diego Schwartzman and Federico Delbonis can be in the singles tie as Federico Coria can also walk in for crucial points. Their senior most player, Maximo Gonzalez aged 38 will be working his magic in doubles with Andres Molteni, the team has work to do but has the strongest chance to top Group D.
Argentina will be facing Greece, Poland and Georgia as their doubles pair will hold the final call on crucial matches. Stefanos Tsitsipas will be on top of Greece as Hubert Hurkacz will do the same for Poland but both the players don’t have enough support and experience like Argentina. The 2022 season will start in grand fashion as 16 countries will battle with each other and one will walk away with the trophy after 9 days of combat on court.
Andy Murray receives wildcard for 2022 Australian Open
(Tennis news) Andy Murray is back in the Australian Open after two years, he last played in 2019 where he lost the opening round to Roberto Bautista Agut in a four hour marathon. Murray will be playing the Australian Open for the 14th time next year and is 2 victories away from 50 career wins at the first Grand Slam of the year.
“I’m really excited to be back playing at the Australian Open and grateful to Craig and the team for the opportunity," Murray said in a statement. "I’ve had some great times in Australia playing in front of the amazing crowds and I can’t wait to step back out on court at Melbourne Park.”
The 34 year old had one of his best streaks here a decade ago as from 2010 to 2016 he reached the finals 5 times and reached the quarterfinal and semifinal once. The Scot reached two consecutive finals twice in 2010,11 and in 2015,16; Novak Djokovic defeated him in four of the five finals while Roger Federer defeated him in the 2010 final.
Murray has been making a comeback since his hip surgery which almost brought down the curtains in his career after the 2019 event. The three time Grand Slam winner has shown strength in the toughest phase of his career as currently only Djokovic out of the big four has not suffered major injuries so far. Murray, Nadal and Federer are recovering from injuries as Federer won’t be seen in action this time.
More wildcards will be announced soon by the organizers as the five time finalist did have some convincing victories this year. He defeated Jannik Sinner, Hubert Hurkacz, Carlos Alcaraz and the list will grow next year. Murray played 29 matches this year same as Rafael Nadal and won 15 of them as Nadal had 24 wins. Nine more victories will give Murray 700 career wins which is the fourth most amongst active players after the big three.
The former world number one has never defeated Djokovic in five of their meetings at Australia, but has defeated Federer once and Nadal twice in which the Spaniard retired hurt in the second meeting. He has not faced Nadal for over 5 years, Federer for 6 years and Djokovic in 4 years and maybe the 2022 Australian Open can bring the old days back which can inspire the new gen even more.
Jannik Sinner seeking to enter the top five in ATP rankings in 2022 season
(Tennis news) Jannik Sinner is the current youngest player in the top ten as he is only 20 years old and in his third year on the ATP tour. The Italian had a rapid rise to the top this year with four titles in five finals all coming on hard courts. Sinner started the season with a title at Melbourne 1 defeating Karen Khachanov in the semifinals, in the next two events he made first round exits. He will be expected to stage some upset at the 2022 Australian Open.
Sinner had never progressed beyond the fourth in Masters 1000 until this year when he made the finals at Miami defeating Khachanov for the second time this year and beat Roberto Bautista Agut in the semifinals. In the finals he lost to Hubert Hurkacz and at Barcelona he reached the semifinals by beating Andrey Rublev in straight sets. In the next 7 events, he did not progress beyond the fourth round until his title win at Washington where he beat four Americans on the way.
Sinner’s next title came at the Sofia Open where he was the defending champion. In the finals he defeated Gael Monfils for the second time in a row as he had beaten the Frenchmen at the US Open. Sinner then didn't drop for the second consecutive to win a title at Antwerp and went on to reach the semifinals at Vienna which projected him to career best ranking of 9.
Sinner was expected to play at the Nitto ATP Finals but a first round loss at the Paris Masters put him in the backseat. He then got a chance at his hometown when fellowmen Matteo Berrettini was injured and Sinner got off to a winning start as the crowd went berserk in his match against Hurkacz.
Sinner’s strokes are always on the offensive and hit flat with incredible force that causes him to master the hardcourts. Sinner has proven that even with very little experience, he can beat the elite players and with more practice can perform well in high pressure matches. The match against Carlos Alcaraz at Paris was supposed to be a trailer for what the rivalry holds in the future. Sinner is quick around the court and can also stretch to hit impressive winners.
Sinner is yet to make an impression at Grand Slams, he reached the quarter final stage at Roland Garros last year and that has been his only appearance at that level so far. He has only played at 8 Grand Slams so far but has many competitors aside him. Now with the top ten entry, Sinner will try to transfer his hardcourts supremacy into the Grand Slams as three of the four Grand Slams are held in fast moving courts. Sinner will need to progress deeper at the majors as he can then have a crack at the top five of the rankings.
Croatia cruises into semifinals at Davis Cup, Britain to face Germany for semi final berth
(Tennis news) Croatia became the first team this year to qualify for the semifinals of the Davis Cup as they beat Italy in a highly tense quarterfinal. Italy was expected to go through the last four but found trouble from the start as world number 279 Borna Gojo got the first point for Croatia with a win over Lorenzo Sonego who is ranked almost 250 places above him. Jannik Sinner kept the team alive with a three set win over Marin Cilic as the youngster played through the pressure and proved how much he has grown over the past few months.
In the final match, Croatia had the advantage as their doubles pair were the best in the world and they did what they were supposed to do. Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic won the tie for Croatia and did not even face a breakpoint in the match. The loss in the first tie against Borna proved to be too costly for the Italians as their singles players were all top ranked and experienced. Croatia had the doubles tie sorted as it was the singles which were a concern but Borna turned it all round for the team. Croatia were the first unseeded nation to win the Davis Cup when they defeated Slovakia in 2005. Their second title came in 2018 when they defeated France and now they have a chance to win a third one.
Croatia defeated Italy 2-1
Borna Gojo defeated Lorenzo Sonego 7-6(7-2), 2-6, 6-2, Sinner defeated Cilic 3-6, 7-6(7-4), 6-3, Mektic and Pavic defeated Sinner and Fabio Fognini 6-3, 6-4,
Great Britain will face Germany in the next quarterfinals today. 10 time champions Britain are the favourites to progress into the semifinals as they have higher ranked singles and doubles players. Cameron Norrie and Daniel Evans will spearhead the singles team for Britain as Joe Salisbury and Neal Skupski will be looking to win the doubles tie. For the Germans, they have won the title three times and had lost at the same stage to the same team in 2018. Jan-Lennard Struff is leading the singles tie along with Dominik Koepfer but their doubles pair did the trick against Austria as they won the final tie. The pair of Kevin Krawietz and Tim Puetz will once again try to push the team when they are up against a spirited opponent.
The expected score will be 3-0 or 2-1 for Britain but will be an upset if Germany scrapes through. Norrie is the highest ranked player in both the teams and his win will provide a good chance as their doubles pair are also the favourites. With Croatia's result against Italy now an upset in the singles will be a huge motivating factor for Krawietz and Puetz as Jan-Lennard or Dominik will have to pull off something sensational for the team to enter the last four.
Also read: Russia end hopes for defending champion Spain in Davis Cup, Kazakhstan reaches quarterfinals
Feliciano Lopez and Carreno Busta deliver as Spain begins title defence with victory at Davis Cup
(Tennis news) Spain had lost three crucial players before the start of the match at the Davis Cup but 40 year old Feliciano Lopez gave Spain exactly what it needed as he put the first point on the scoreboard when he beat Roberto Quiroz in straight sets. Next, it was the turn of Tokyo Olympics Singles bronze medalist Pablo Carreno Busta who had a tougher battle than his team mate, he lost the first set and could not end the match early onto the third set as a tiebreaker brought things to a conclusion.
In the doubles, Busta and Marcel Granollers gave them their third and final victory in a match which lasted for almost 3 hours as it also had two tiebreaks. Spain is up against a tough Russian team on 28th November.
Spain defeated Ecuador 3-0
Lopez defeated Quiroz 6-3, 6-3, Busta defeated Emilio Gomez 5-7, 6-3, 7-6 (7-5), Busta and Marcel Granollers defeated Gonzalo Escobar and Diego Hidalgo 6-4, 6-7(5-7), 7-6(7-2).
Italy’s youngsters were on fire as they won both their singles rubber to confirm victory over USA. The first match was a clash between world number 26 Reily Opelka and world number 27 Lorenzo Sonego but it was the Italian who gave the perfect start as he defeated Opelka in straight sets. In the second match, Jannik Sinner had played at the Nitto ATP Finals a few days earlier and paid no heed to size as John Isner was bageled in the second set to confirm victory for the Italians.
In the doubles match, US Open winner Rajeev Ram paired with former US Open winner Jack Sock as they got a consolation point by defeating Fabio Fognini and Lorenzo Musetti. Italy will next play against Colombia today.
Italy defeated USA 2-1
Sonego defeated Opelka 6-3, 7-6 (7-4), Sinner defeated Isner 6-2, 6-0, Rajeev and Jack defeated Fognini and Musetti 7-6 (7-5), 6-2.
Captain Viktor Trovicki would not have expected any other result from Serbia as they won all the three matches against Austria. Austria was missing the company of injured Dominic Thiem who went out the season early and it did reflect on the team. Dusan Lajovic played a long match against Gerlad Melzer as two of the sets needed an hour to settle when he finally gave Serbia its first point. In the second match, Novak Djokovic did the complete opposite as he closed out two sets under an hour to confirm victory for Serbia and in the doubles the pair of Nikola Cacic and Filip Krajinovic added the finishing touches. Serbia is up against Germany today.
Serbia defeated Austria 3-0
Lajovic defeated Melzer 7-6(7-5), 3-6, 7-5, Djokovic defeated Dennis Novak 6-3, 6-2, Cacic and Krajinovic defeated Oliver Marach and Philipp Oswald 7-6(7-4), 4-6, 6-3.
Daniil Medvedev leading a strong Russian team at the Davis Cup
(Tennis news) With the end of the ATP season, the Davis Cup will be starting today as players get ready to represent their countries on court. It will be held in Madrid, Innsbruck and Turin with a total of 6 groups where each group will comprise three countries, it will be a round robin format at first and then will proceed to the knockout stages. The final is scheduled to be held in Madrid. The event is being held after a year’s gap due to the COVID-19 pandemic which cancelled last year’s event, in 2019 Spain defeated Canada in the final to win their 6th title.
Each tie will consist of two singles and one doubles match and it will be best of three sets. The top players are expected to play as defending champion Spain will be without Rafael Nadal although Carlos Alacarz will be making his debut for the team along with Jannik Sinner who will play for Italy.
At the top of the singles for Britain is Cameron Norrie, the 26 year old is 12th in the World Rankings after winning the ATP Masters 1000 in the Indian Wells. The left-hander had made an unbelievable comeback from two sets to beat Roberto Bautista Agut on his Davis Cup debut in 2018. If Norrie can live up to his potential, he will lead the attack along with world number 25 Dan Evans, doubles specialist Joe Salisbury who made the doubles at the ATP Finals in Turin and Neal Skupski.
Russia has one of the top players in their team as Daniil Medvedev will spearhead the attack along with Andrey Rublev, Karen Khachanov, Aslan Karatsev and Evan Donskoy. Khachanov and Karatsev have not been in top form in recent months which means Medvedev along with Rublev will be expected to bring crucial points in singles. The team had won the ATP Cup at the start of the season.
USA will open their tie with tough competitors Italy as both the teams have the top players. Sinner, Fabio Fognini, Lorenzo Sonego and Lorenzo Musetti will battle against John Isner, Frances Tiafoe and Jack Sock in addition to Rajeev Ram in the doubles match.
Colombia made their entry after defeating Argentina as doubles pair of Robert Farah and Juan Sebastian Cabal will lead the attack as the singles players are all ranked out of the top 100 and their experience is also very limited. There will be three matches as each group will start out their day in respective venues.
Casper Ruud and Andrey Rublev battle for semifinal spot at Nitto ATP Finals, Daniil Medvedev makes it three out of three
(Tennis news) Daniil Medvedev kept proving why he is a mental giant as he beat Jannik Sinner at the Nitto ATP Finals. Medvedev kept his foot on the gas and managed to break him twice as Sinner was still rusty to give him a 3-0 lead in just 11 minutes of play. It turned out to be a triple break which gave Medvedev a 5-0 lead then comfortably served for a bagel in the first set which showed the scale of Sinner's challenge against the Russian.
Much to the delight of the home crowd, Sinner won his first game after 33 minutes to enter the scoreboard at the start of the second set, but took the opportunity to build some momentum and took a 3-1 lead. Sinner went on to take the set as he held his serve and in the tiebreaker pulled out a few quick groundstrokes. In the final set, Sinner had two match points in the tie breaker but Medvedev managed to save them both and take the match with a powerful backhand winner. Medvedev defeated Sinner 6-0, 6-7(5-7), 7-6(10-8).
Alexander Zverev booked the third spot in the semifinals as he beat Hubert Hurkacz in their final group stage match. Zverev started with a 5-1 lead in just 17 minutes in the first set when winless Hurkacz was broken two times and Zverev quickly found his first serve. Hurkacz couldn't get control over the match as Zverev secured the opening set in 19 minutes but Hurkacz took advantage of a lucky net rope and pinned him down to keep at least one more game in the first set. Zverev had only missed his first serve twice in the set.
Hurkacz's serve improved a bit in the second set which allowed him to stabilize for the start of the second set, but couple of misfired forehands allowed Zverev to break him in the 9th game for a 5-4 lead as he won the final service game to win in straight sets. Zverev defeated Hurkacz 6-2, 6-4.
Andrey Rublev will face Casper Ruud in their final group match as the winner will face Novak Djokovic in the semifinal. Rublev has won all of their four meetings against Ruud and will be facing him for the third time this year. Ruud has managed to take a single set in the four meetings, he took the opening set when they met for the first time at Hamburg in 2019.
In doubles, top seeds Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic booked the semifinal spot with a win over Ivan Dodig and Filip Polasek. Mektic and Pavic defeated Dodig and Polasek 6-4, 7-6(8-6). The pair of Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballo who had first secured the semifinal spot lost their final group stage match to Horia Tecau and Kevin Krawietz. Granollers and Zeballo defeated Tecau and Krawietz 6-3, 6-7(1-7), 10-6.
Alexander Zverev and Andrey Rublev eyeing last two semifinal spots at Nitto ATP Finals
(Tennis news) Novak Djokovic was in compelling form again as he advanced to his 10th semi-final in the Nitto ATP Finals after a straight-set victory over Andrey Rublev in Turin. The Serbian didn't have everything he wanted for much of the first set as Rublev's thunderous forehand posed a lot of problems, but that all changed in 8th game as Djokovic made the most of rublev's backhand error and rushed inside to nail a cross pass and gained a crucial break. The five-time champion then served while not giving a single point to take the lead in 36 minutes before going ahead with another break to lead 2-1 early in the second set.
Djokovic's characteristic elasticity in defensive positions was once again the key as he produced a devastating pass down the stretch to outclass the world No.5 and ensure a win. Djokovic defeated Rublev 6-3, 6-2.
Cameron Norrie couldn't bring out the first set as his ATP Finals debut ended in a three set loss to Casper Ruud. Norrie has become the fourth British player to play singles in the history of the event, he has come in to replace Stefanos Tsitsipas after the Greek player pulled out of the tournament with a right elbow injury but failed to win in his debut. Norrie was eager to make the most of his opportunity and got off to a strong start and was rarely put to the test until he served for the set while defending a breakpoint before finishing the job in just 33 minutes.
In the second set, both players served strong as Norrie was the first to falter with a few unforced errors on the forehand and a failed volley which allowed the world number eight to grab the crucial breakpoint and go ahead for a final set. Ruud started to hit faster groundstrokes which put stress on Norrie's serve and paid huge dividends in the fifth game when a double fault on a third breakpoint gave the advantage to the Norwegian. Chances of victory stayed solid with Ruud from that point on as he once again got the better of the Briton by serving a tough battle in one hour and 52 minutes on his fourth match point to secure his first victory in the tournament. Ruud defeated Norrie 1-6 6-3, 6-4.
In doubles, Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah beat Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares as they will try to reach the semifinals for a third time when they face Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury in the final group match. Juan and Farah defeated Jamie and Bruno 6-4, 7-5.
US Open champions Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury were almost out of the event as they saved two match points to beat Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut. The final set saw the pair saving a matchpoint at 9-8 and at 10-9 as they will need to win their final match to stand a chance to enter the semi finals. Rajeev and Joe defeated Herbert and Mahut. 6-7(7-9), 6-0, 13-11.
Also read: Jannik Sinner makes dream debut at Nitto ATP finals, Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic suffer shock defeat
Jannik Sinner makes dream debut at Nitto ATP finals, Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic suffer shock defeat
(Tennis news) Jannik Sinner made his dream debut at the the Nitto ATP Finals with a straight set victory over Hubert Hurkacz. The 20 year old was expected to qualify for the event over a month ago but fell short of qualifying and was the first alternate for the event. He is the youngest player at the event since Juan Martin del Potro in 2008 who was at the same age when he played at Shanghai. Matteo Berrettini had to withdraw from the event which brought in another young Italian as Sinner lit up the court and was charged up by the spectators. Sinner has a chance of becoming the first alternate to qualify for the Nitto ATP Finals semi-finals if he manages a win against Daniil Medvedev and if Alexander Zverev loses against Hurkacz.
Sinner was out of form in the last two events he played but was in his own world when he took over Hurkacz. Sinner broke him early on the first set and his retrieval skills also put on a show which Hurkacz couldn't decode. Sinner battled from the baseline as his groundstrokes were too powerful for Hurkacz to handle, the second set saw nothing change as Sinner continued his rampage to mark his first victory at the event. Sinner defeated Hurkacz 6-2, 6-2.
“At the moment I’m just happy about today's match. Tomorrow I will go on court to practise, and then we’ll see what’s coming,” Sinner said. “Of course, you want to go on to the semi-finals, you’re trying to do your best but on the other hand, these are the best eight players in the world. And with me, nine. Everyone is tough to beat here, so let’s see what’s coming.”
Daniil Medvedev booked his place in the semifinal with a fifth consecutive victory over Alexander Zverev. The match saw Medevedev meddling with Zverev’s defense as both of them did not want to slow down at any point. Medvedev looked for the winners as Zverev tried blocking them which made Medvedev come at the net to set things in order. The first set did not involve much hassle as Medvedev came strong from the opening game.
The second set was filled with breathtaking rallies and shots as Zverev also made few successful appearances at the net and even saved a break point in the seventh game with an overhead smash. The scores were level at 6 all as a tiebreak and Medvedev sarcastically clapped towards the crowd when he lost a point at 3-5 which gave Zverev the set point then went on to win the set. In the final set, both the players held their serve as Medvedev came back from 2-4 in the tie breaker and had two match points at 6-4 until it was Zverev’s turn to come back. Medvedev then got his third matchpoint at 7-6 as he won the set and will face alternate Jannik Sinner in the final round robin match for both. Medvedev defeated Zverev 6-3, 6-7(3-7), 7-6(8-6).
“Definitely one of the matches to remember,” Medvedev said. “When you win 8/6 in the tie-break in the third, it was 4/2 for him so I was like okay, he serves a few aces it’s done. I made it 6/4 and I was like okay, that’s my moment now. It’s back to 6/6, you get really tight, because I wanted to make a brave move on the 6/5 second serve and volley, but it didn't work out at all.
In doubles, the top seeded pair of Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic were beaten by Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos. The pair had lost to the top seeds in the final of Wimbledon a few months ago and have now booked their place in the semifinals. Zeballos denied the second set for Pavic and Mektic with two powerful serves as they will have to win the next match to stand a chance to qualify for the semifinals. Marcel and Horacio defeated Pavic and Mektic 6-4, 7-6(7-4).
Ivan Dodig and Filip Polasek kept their semifinal chances afloat as they beat Kevin Krawietz and Horia Tecau who have now lost both their opening matches. Dodig and Polasek combined strong serves and quick but precise returns as they will now face the top seeds Nikola and Mate for a place in the semifinals. Dodig and Polasek defeated Kevin and Horia 7-6(7-2), 7-5.
Daniil Medvedev battles past Hubert Hurkacz in Nitto ATP finals, Matteo Berrettini withdraws midway due to injury
(Tennis news) Daniil Medvedev began his title defense with a three set victory over Hubert Hurkacz on the first day of Nitto ATP Finals. Medvedev had to use his all wits to tackle Hurkacz’s volleys as the first set went to the tie breaker as Hurkacz took the set in a dream debut. Medvedev made sure that was the last hope for Hurkacz as he made no mistakes in the second set, in the final set Medvedev was determined to take the match and did what he had in mind. Medvedev joined Stefanos Tsitsipas for the second most wins this season with 55 as Alexander Zverev has 56. Medvedev defeated Hurkacz 6-7(5-7), 6-3, 6-4.
“I had zero break points to save, so in a way I was never under pressure," Medvedev said in his on-court interview. "I had only two games on Hubert’s serve where I had breakpoints. Super happy to make this work and that I managed to get both breaks.”
Alexander Zverev looked like a man on a mission as the crowd broke the sound barrier against Matteo Berrettini. The Italian found great support from the crowd as Zverev saved a matchpoint at 5-6, Zverev took it to tiebreak and took the set on the first chance. In the second set, Berrettini appeared to be in tears when he dropped the racquet after hitting a forehand into the net. A medical time out was called as the physio came in and checked his abdomen, Berrettini played one more point but he could not go play any longer. Zverev came across the net to hug Berretini as he was visibly broken and the crowd too encouraged the Italian who was making his second appearance at the event. If Berrettini is unable to play the next two matches, the second alternate Jannik Sinner will be called in for the remaining matches. Zverev defeated 7-6(9-7), 1-0.
“It is mentally really tough for me because I used to have an injury close to the same area, so it is tough to play," Berrettini said. "Also, I don’t know what it is. I have to figure out what it is and then if it is nothing really big, maybe I can play. Tomorrow with my team and the doctor I will do some checks and I hope it won’t be something that won’t let me play the next two matches.
In doubles, US Open champions Joe Salisbury and Rajeev Ram had a good start as they won against Bruno Soares and Jamie Murray in straight sets. Joe and Rajeev defeated Bruno and Jamie 6-1, 7-6(7-5). This season’s top doubles pair of Mate Pavić and Nikola Mektić recorded their 60th victory of the year as they defeated Horia Tecău and Kevin Krawietz 6-4, 6-4.
Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos recorded the first upset of the event as they defeated Ivan Dodig and Filip Polášek 4-6, 7-6(12-10), 10-6.
Carlos Alcaraz and Sebastian Korda leading the young field at Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals
(Tennis news) The Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals will begin from tomorrow as the young superstars will battle with each other for the crown. The withdrawal of defending champion Jannik Sinner has made way for Holger Vitus Nodskov Rune making his debut at the event as Felix Auger Aliassime has also skipped the event since he is playing at the ongoing Stockholm Open. This year all the 8 players will be making their debut and these are the top four players to watch out for.
The Spaniard is the highest ranked player in the field and also the youngest player. The 18 year old had reached the fourth round at Paris Masters by beating world number 9 Jannik Sinner in the third round, he also reached the semifinals at Vienna by beating Mario Berrerttini on the way. One of the rising stars this year, Carlos became the youngest quarterfinal at the US Open in the open era and can make it big here this time. Carlos won his first ATP tour title at Umag this year. Carlos is an aggressive baseliner who uses his raw power in his groundstrokes.
The 21 year old is the oldest player in the draw, Korda started the year with a runner up finish at Delray Beach and reached the quarterfinals at Miami Masters 1000. Korda won his first ATP tour title at Parma without dropping a set and went on to reach the fourth round at Wimbledon. One of the most skillful players in the draw, Sebastian can play from the baseline as well as come up on the net for some neatly played volleys.
Brandon made a breakthrough this year when he reached two consecutive finals in two weeks at Los Cabos and Atlanta. He defeated John Isner in straight sets at Los Cabos and lost to him in the finals at Atlanta, he again defeated the giant server at the US Open. Brandon also defeated Fabio Fognini at San Diego and also reached the quarterfinals at Antwerp. Brandon has the ability to play well in pressure along with returning strong serves which was clearly evident in matches against Isner.
Gaston was ranked 103 in the world before his quarterfinal run at Paris Masters which pulled his ranking to 67. He was the final player to qualify for the event and with his current form is the dark horse. Gaston has incredible court coverage although he is one of the shortest players on tour as he is 5 feet 8 inches and defeated Alcaraz at Paris which involved coming back from 0-5 to take the next seven games to win the match. Gaston is the second oldest player after Sebastian and can manage more upsets when he lands in Italy.
Alexander Zverev defeats Frances Tiafoe 7-5 6-4 in the Vienna Open final
(Tennis news) Alexander Zverev claimed his fifth tour level title this season after defeating 23 year old American qualifier Frances Tiafoe 7-5, 6-4. Despite very little to separate the two, it was Germany’s Zverev who took the lead in the 12th game of the first set and went on to dominate the match which saw the 24 year old hitting eight aces.
“He didn’t let me play the way I wanted to play, tactically he was very good,” Zverev said. “But I am happy with the win and I am happy with my fifth title of the year and I am happy with my first in Vienna, so it was a good day. I think the Olympics gave me a lot of confidence and I believe I can compete for any title that I play in,” Zverev added. “I am happy with the form I am in but I have got two more massive weeks ahead of me and I hope I can do well.”
Frances Tiafoe had a fantastic comeback from a set and 2-5 down against Italian Jannik Sinner was unable to match the sheer aggressiveness of Zverev to get a victory. The World Number 49 has had a good season with 29 tour-level victories and was looking forward to his first tour-level trophy since Delray Beach in 2018. “I knew I was capable of a week like this,” Tiafoe said. “It is not easy to beat good player after good player. These guys are so good. To have a week like this and know you can do it and not just beat one top player but three great guys is great.”
In other results, Former US Open champion Marin Cilic defeated Taylor Fritz 7-6 (7-3) 4-6 6-4 in the St. Petersburg final. Donna Vekic won her first title in more than four years by defeating Danish teenager Clara Tauson 7-6 (7-3) 6-2 at the Courmayeur Ladies Open while former World Number 1 Simona Halep lost to Anett Kontaveit 6-2 6-3, at the Transylvania Open.
Marin Cilic beats Taylor Fritz to triumph at St. Petersburg after a decade
(Tennis news) Marin Cilic won his second title of the season with a three set win over coming of age Taylor Fritz at St. Petersburg Open. Cilic had last won the title in 2011 when he defeated Janko Tipservic which was his only title that year. Cilic broke Fritz in the sixth game of the opening set with forehands that kept going faster at every return but Fritz came back in the end to take it to tiebreak.
Cilic continued his attacking play to take the first set, in the second set two crucial breaks earned Fritz a set point as he leveled up his defense game to take the set and force the match to a decider. In the final set, a double fault in the ninth game by Fritz gave Cilic the lead as he went on to win the match with a stylish forehand volley. Cilic defeated Fritz 7-6(7-3), 4-6, 6-4.
Cilic now has won twenty titles in his career which makes him the 6th active player to win 20 or more titles in the game and the last time he won two titles in a year was in 2016 when he won at Basel and Cincinnati. He has now reached two finals in a row as he had finished as runner up at Moscow and also has two semi final finishes.
Fritz had defeated Cilic in their previous meeting at Indian Wells in 2017. Fritz is yet to win a title this year even though he has reached the semifinal stage five times and this has been his fifth runner up finish in his career. The 24 year old had all his energy used up as Cilic mixed his aggressive groundstrokes with dropshots and backhand slices.
"During the whole week I think my level was really good. I felt that I can still get my game to a better level, and it was a little bit similar today," Cilic said. "I was playing great on some occasions, missing some opportunities, serving for the first set, not making that first set more comfortable. As things went on, obviously Taylor started to play better. But in the end, it was a great mental battle from my side."
Cilic was playing here for the fifth time and the first time since 2011, he had first played here in 2006 when Fritz was nine years old. Fritz was playing here for the second time after losing his first match last year to Cameron Norrie.
Also read: Casper Ruud and Jannik Sinner hoping to gain crucial points at Paris
Carlos Alcaraz continues his run at Vienna by entering semifinals
(Tennis news) Carlos Alcaraz Garfia beat Matteo Berrettini in a war of forehands as the teenager took out the world number seven at Vienna Open. Carlos has entered the semifinals of the Masters 500 event for the first time and will face Alexander Zverev for a place in the finals. The teenager had beaten Daniel Evans, Andy Murray in the earlier rounds and will have a big test ahead against Zverev. Carlos defeated Berrettini 6-1, 6-7(2-7), 7-6(7-5).
“This is one of my best performances on Tour so far,” Alcaraz said. “I am really happy for that and it was amazing. I just tried to play aggressively all the time. In the tough moments it was important to be able to do that.”
Frances Tiafoe was having a below average year until he played at Vienna as he reached his first semifinal of the year by beating Diego Schwartzman in the quarterfinals. Tiafoe showed skill and speed to defeat the Argentine who is known for his court coverage. Tiafoe earlier had defeated top seed Stefanos Tsitsipas and completed the match against Schwartzman under 2 hours. Tiafoe defeated Schwartzman 6-4, 7-6 (8-6).
“I was playing great tennis, I was happy where I was at. New balls came and I got a little lackadaisical that game. Then Diego just kind of started locking in,” Tiafoe said. “I started rushing, I started trying to hit everything as hard as I could. It was not fun. I don’t know what to tell you, it was not fun. There was not one part of it that was fun."
Alexander Zverev made no mistakes this time as he went past Felix Auger-Aliassime, Felix had defeated Zverev in their previous meeting at Wimbledon a few months ago. Zverev was hitting the ball well in the first set and took it in 40 minutes but in the second set he seemed a bit rusty as Felix took the second set in half an hour. Zverev regained his energy and form in the decider as he broke Felix in the sixth game with a strong backhand which was enough to take the lead and win the match. Zverev defeated Felix 6-4, 3-6, 6-3.
“I did make it difficult for myself once again, that needs to stop happening,” Zverev said. “One easy mistake and the second set went away. But I am proud of myself because at the beginning of the second set it could have gone his way easily.” Zverev will next face Alcaraz and will be meeting the young Spaniard for the second time after their third round match up in Acapulco which Zverev won in straight sets.
“Alcaraz has improved a lot," Zverev added. "He has made big steps forward and is a great player, so I am looking forward to that match.”
Jannik Sinner made a big breakthrough as he beat Casper Ruud in the quarterfinals as he increased his chances to compete at the ATP year end finals. Sinner had beaten Casper last year at Vienna in the third round on straight sets and now he has the same points as Casper in the race to the season finale. Sinner broke Casper in the 11th game of the first set with a huge down the line forehand to eventually take the set with another scintillating forehand.
Sinner’s groundstrokes were fast and furious which Casper was unable to catch up on. The first set lasted for 57 minutes and the second got over in 20 minutes as Sinner did not let time affect his form or stamina but it did get to Casper. Sinner defeated Ruud 7-5, 6-1.
“I think today there was not a lot of rhythm, not so many exchanges. I served well today, I have to say, especially on the important points," Sinner said in his post-match interview. "Obviously there was a lot of pressure on both sides. I’m happy how I controlled the match emotionally and everything together. I would say it was a good match.” Sinner will next face Tiafoe in the semifinals.
Casper Ruud and Jannik Sinner hoping to gain crucial points at Paris
(Tennis news) The final Masters 1000 Rolex Paris event will be held from 1st November and all the top players will be playing to end the year with some valuable points in their pocket. This is the 8th Master 1000 event since the Shanghai tournament was cancelled due to the pandemic.
Novak Djokovic is expected to play in the event since his defeat to Daniil Medevedev at the US Open final. The Serbian will be leading the field along with Medvedev, Stefanos Tsitsipas and Alexander Zverev. The Paris Masters has seen five different winners in the last five editions, Medevedev is the defending champion and had defeated Zverev in the final.
Zverev has already won two Masters 1000 titles this year and will aim to win a third one to reach the top three of the rankings. Medvedev has a chance to inch closer to the number 1 rankings if Djokovic is out early, Matteo Berrettini can enter the top five if he can reach deep in the event. Andrey Rublev is still looking for a Masters 1000 title as he has reached two finals this year.
Djokovic has won the most titles here with five wins including a hat trick of titles from 2013- 2015. He won his last title in 2019 defeating Denis Shapovalov in the final and will be looking to win a 6th title in his comeback. Since 1986, only three left handers have won the event and Greg Rusedski was the last one to win it in 1998. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga was the last Frenchman to win it as he had lifted the title in 2008 and was also the last one to reach the final in 2011.
Jannik Sinner now has chances of qualifying in the year end championships if he performs well in France. Sinner and Casper Ruud are now level in points as Hubert Hurkacz is just behind them both. The event has a history of players jumping up the rankings to qualify for the season ending championship with the most memorable one coming in 2017 when Jack Sock won the event which saw his rankings jump from 24 to 9 and qualified for the Nitto ATP finals.
Cameron Norrie had won in Indian Wells and will be looking to win here as Rusedski was also a left handed player from Britain. Norrie is just behind Hubert in the race to the season finals and both of them fell early at Vienna. This year there are a handful of players who can spring a surprise and climb up the rankings to enter the top eight.
Looking back at Rafael Nadal’s record breaking run at the 2020 French Open
(Tennis news) The 2020 French Open was played from September to October instead of its usual schedule due to the pandemic. Rafael Nadal had won the last three editions and was looking for a 13th title here and 20th Grand Slam overall. Roger Federer was leading the list with 20 Slams, Nadal had 19 and Novak Djokovic came in third with 17 slams.
Nadal had lost in the quarterfinals of the Australian Open to Dominic Thiem in four sets and was looking to win his first title of the year after winning two slams the previous year. Nadal recorded two bagels in the first four matches and faced stiff competition in the quarterfinals from Jannik Sinner as the first set went till tiebreak. In the semifinals he faced Diego Schwartzman and had lost to him for the first time at Rome, the first two sets went in favour of Nadal and in the third set a tie break was needed in which the Spaniard prevailed to head into the final for a 13th time.
Nadal and Djokovic were meeting at Roland Garros for the seventh time. Djokovic had handed Nadal his second defeat at the French Open when they met last time five years ago and had beaten Nadal at the ATP finals in the beginning of the year. Beating Nadal at the French Open has been one of the most difficult tasks in the sport since 2005 and Djokovic was the favourite to do so.
Nadal began his title defense by taking the first six games as he recorded his third bagel of the tournament and went on to win the next two to take his 13th French Open and join Federer with 20 Grand Slams. Nadal had not dropped a set while winning the title and did it for the fourth time and the first time since the 2017 French Open. This has been Nadal’s last slam till date and is currently recovering from an injury in his left foot having played three slams this year.
Nadal will be 36 next year and is still the favourite to win the French Open. Given his record at the Slam in the past 16 years there is little chance anyone can topple the “King of clay” other than Djokovic as even Federer has failed in multiple attempts even at his prime he could not defeat Nadal at Roland Garros. The left hander undoubtedly is the best when it comes to the clay surface and the French Open has his name written all over, Nadal has every chance to take the crown in 2022.
Top players who can make their debut at the Next Gen ATP Finals
(Tennis news) The fourth edition of Next Gen ATP Finals is set to begin from next month as the top eight players aged 21 or under will fight for the title. Defending champion Jannik Sinner, Felix Auger-Aliassime, Carlos Alcaraz and Sebastian Korda have already qualified for the event with four spots remaining and a month left there are players who are close to qualifying for the prestigious event.
The 18 year old Spaniard secured his place in the event when he made the quarterfinals at the US Open and defeated Stefanos Tsitsipas in the third round. He also reached the semifinals at Winston Salem and Marbella Open and won his first tour level title at Umag while defeating Richard Gasquet in the final. Carlos also made his debut in all the Slams this year, he reached the second round at Wimbledon and Australian Open and the third round at French Open. He has an aggressive style of play which is well suited at hard courts and can bring out his powerful forehand.
Korda had reached the fourth round of the French Open as a qualifier last year and had defeated John Isner on the way. This year he started with a runner up finish at Delray Beach and defeated John Isner at the quarterfinals, Korda then reached the quarterfinals at Miami Masters 1000 defeating Fabio Fognini, Aslan Karatsev and Diego Schwartzman on the way.
His biggest win came at Parma Open when he won the title without dropping a set the whole tournament. He also reached the fourth round at Wimbledon losing to Karen Khachanov in a thrilling four hour battle. Korda is 6 feet five inches tall which gives him good reach and also is a defensive player with great control over the ball.
Jenson had reached the fourth round of the US Open losing to world number one Novak Djokovic in four sets while defeating Karatsev and Taylor Fritz on the way. He was the runner up at Newport and had reached the last four at Washington. Jenson has a powerful cross court forehand and pulls out a sudden backhand dropshot which looks like a typical double handed backhand.
The 19 year old Italian will be eager to prove himself in front of his home crowd. Lorenzo first came into the spotlight last year when he reached the round of 16 at Rome while defeating Stan Wawrinka and Kei Nishikori in straight sets and later won to reach the semifinals at Sardinia. This year he reached the semifinals at Acapulco Open losing to Tsitsipas while defeating Frances Tiafoe and Grigor Dimitrov on the way and then reached the semifinals at Lyon again losing to Tsitsipas. He has a classic one handed backhand which has been quite lethal and has quite a bit of trickshots up his sleeve.
Jannik Sinner wins the Sofia Open for the second time
(Tennis news) Jannik Sinner defended his title at the Sofia Open as he beat Gael Monfils in straight sets. Sinner has won three titles this season and all of them in hardcourts, he has now entered the top ten rankings and is the youngest of the group.
Sinner has faced Monfils at the US Open in the third round and has three victories over Monfils in four matches. Sinner played aggressively right from the start in the final as Gael kept returning the ball, Sinner kept hitting forehands across the court to take the first set. In the second set, Monfils came into form as he hit speeding forehands and even slam dunked a smash but Sinner’s form was not affected as he came into the net to finish off points against Monfils. Sinner defeated Monfils 6-3, 6-4.
Monfils has had a rough year as he is yet to win a title, his last title came a year back at Rotterdam. The 35 year old has reached the finals for the first time this year and his best performance at Metz where he reached the semifinals losing to Pablo Carreno Busta. As for Sinner, his first title came at the same tournament a year back and has won multiple titles this year and now has a chance to play in the world tour finals given his performance at the handful of tournaments left in the season.
Sinner started the year with a title at Melbourne and then reached the quarterfinals in Dubai but his highlight was reaching the finals of the Miami Masters 1000 where he lost to Hubert Hurkacz. He also reached the semifinals in Barcelona and the fourth round of the French Open. The 20 year old has already qualified for the Next Gen ATP finals which will begin next month, he won it in 2019 and can continue his winning streak at home in Italy.
Sinner had won the title here last year beating Vasek Pospisil in the final and this time had not dropped a set while capturing the title. With his third title of the year, Sinner has slowly transformed himself into a probable for the majors next year. This season has seen the youngsters play the major role in most of the events, especially in the second half of the year. With one more month to go in the tennis calendar, Sinner will look to climb up the rankings ladder.
Top four players who can qualify for the ATP World Tour Finals for the first time
(Tennis news) The Nitto ATP finals will be held from November second week which will feature the top 8 players in the world. With the Sofia and San Diego Open going on, the players will look to capitalize on the two Masters 1000 series which will bring them closer to the top 8 rankings. There are a few players who have the chance to make it to the tournament for the first time.
Hubert won the Moselles Open in singles and doubles, he has won three titles this year and looks in great form. Hubert is currently in 7th position in the race for the year end championships and so far will not have trouble qualifying. All of his titles have come in hard courts and will be an added advantage for the polish number one. On his way to winning a first Masters 1000 title at Miami he recorded successive wins over Stefanos Tsitsipas and Andrey Rublev. His game does not allow him to commit many unforced errors and has excellent control at the net.
Casper is having the best year in his career as he has won four titles and all of them have come on clay. He has won 43 matches with 12 losses and recently played in the Laver Cup where he defeated Reilly Opelka in straight sets. He had reached the quarterfinals in Toronto and Cincinnati where he lost to Stefanos Tsitsipas and Alexander Zverev respectively. Casper had reached the last four in Madrid and Monte Carlo while defeating two top 10 players on the way. He won three successive titles in the month of July with a winning streak of fourteen matches which ended at Toronto. He is currently in 8th position to qualify for the Tour finals.
Jannik has won two titles this year both in hardcourts and reached the finals in Miami Masters 1000 losing to Hubert in two sets. He has defeated Gael Monfils in the US Open and Andrey Rublev at Barcelona, he has an attacking game as he is always looking for winners. Jannik last played in the US Open reaching the fourth round, he has already qualified for the ATP next Gen where he is the defending champion. Jannik had won the first title of the year at Melbourne where he defeated Karen Khachanov in a marathon semifinal which involved two tie breaks.
He is the youngest player in the race for the Tour Finals and along with Jannik has qualified for the ATP next Gen with his record breaking performance at the US Open. The 21 year old has progressed to the fourth round in all Slams except the French Open this year and has two runner up finishes. He had defeated Roger Federer at the Halle Open and has four wins over top ten players this year. Felix has shown great composure while playing at the Grand Slams and will be needing the same when he qualifies in the final tournament of the year.
The 21st Slam in 2022 or the end of the big three reign, two groups on two different missions
(Tennis news) With the end of the final Grand Slam this year, the big three will start next year with 20 Grand Slams and there will be pressure on each of them when they face their younger rivals who are also on a mission. The US Open final saw youngsters all over the place as the older players just couldn’t match the energy with their juniors.
Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer, the three greatest players whose rivalry has a new target. Federer and Nadal are plagued by injuries as they would not be competing this year, something which was supposed to clear the route for Djokovic but the next generation came in the way. The Australian Open next year will be a must watch as now the draw is hard to predict.
Focusing on the big three’s mission, Djokovic is the youngest as he is 34 years old with Nadal being a year older and Federer at 40 being the oldest. Djokovic is aging gracefully as he has reached the last four finals at the Grand Slam and won three of them which means that he is the clear favourite on any surface. Djokovic is the third man to win all the Grand Slams twice and the first one in over four decades, he defeated Nadal in the semifinals at the French Open this year and also saved two match points in the final at Wimbledon against Federer two years back.
Nadal has his best chances at the French Open which he has won a record 13 times. Even though he is affected by injury a comeback is never off the charts and is a fighter off court too. Nadal’s attacking style has cost him multiple times but he has the never give up spirit which even troubled Federer at his prime. Nadal has struggled in Wimbledon and also in Australian Open, French Open has been his home and the US Open also has been kind to him in recent times.
Federer was written off by critics 4 years back as he had not won a Slam since 2012. In the 2017 season he came back from an injury and made one of the most inspiring comebacks by winning two slams in the year which included a record 8th Wimbledon title. Federer is always a contender even though his last Slam was the Australian Open which he won three years ago and will hope to come back next year to further add more records in his glittering career. Maybe even a dream US Open clash facing Rafael Nadal as both of them have never played at Flushing Meadows.
The second mission is spearheaded by the newly crowned US Open champion Daniil Medvedev followed by Alexander Zverev, Dominic Thiem and Stefanos Tsitsipas. These players are most likely to take the game ahead in the coming years when the big three step out of the court. They have the potential to win slams even if the big three is on the way and even if the odds are against them as seen at the US Open.
Dominic Thiem and Daniil Medvedev are the only players to win a Slam in their pack. Zverev and Tsitsipas have reached the finals of a Slam and are expecting to open their tally next year. This year there were a lot of matches where these players made up for the absence of the veterans. Players like Matteo Berrettini who made the Wimbledon final, Andrey Rublev, Felix Auger Aliassime, Denis Shapovalov are also not far behind in troubling the big three and the emergence of even younger players like Carlos Alcaraz Garfia, Jannik Sinner, Lorenzo Musetti and Jenson Brooksby add more woes to the seniors.
Next year it might not even be about who will win the 21st Slam. It will be about who’s going to take the baton or to rephrase who’s going to grab it as the chances are high that the younger generation start their dominance and assert their presence on court. These players are ready to make history and take what is rightfully theirs, the courts are going to get messy but that's what happens in an invasion.
Also read: Daniil Medvedev’s groundbreaking run at the US Open gives hope to the next generation of stars
Top four seeds into the last four in Cincinnati, Jil Teichmann upsets Belinda Bencic
Cincinnati (Tennis news): In Men’s Singles, the top four seeds entered the semifinals of the Cincinnati Masters 1000. Andrey Rublev registered his second victory in as many meetings over Benoit Paire. The pair had met in the same stage in the Toronto Open, Rublev with his powerful strokes got off to a good start. Paire later used his defensive skills and trick shots as he took the second set. In the final set Rublev continued to use his hammer forehand and reached his third masters 1000 final of the season. He will face Daniil Medvedev for a place in the final.
Daniil Medvedev also got his second victory over Pablo Carreno Busta after the pair had met in the Toronto Open. Medvedev took just 54 minutes to secure a place in the semifinal, he beat Pablo 6-1, 6-1 with just seven unforced errors and twenty winners. Medvedev played a flawless battle as he was also serving great against the Spaniard. Medvedev seems to be a serious contender in the US Open as he has shown exceptional form over the past two weeks.
Alexander Zverev had a great outing as he beat Casper Ruud 6-1, 6-3 to set up a blockbuster semifinal against Stefanos Tsitsipas. Zverev is also a major contender who can stop Novak Djokovic in the US Open as he showed what he's capable of during the Tokyo Olympics. Casper was also in great form but couldn't withstand Zverev’s attack.
Stefanos Tsitsipas beat Felix Auger Aliassime 6-2, 5-7, 6-1 as he suffered a setback in the second set. He had 2 match points in the second set when Felix suddenly made a glorious comeback and won the next three games to take the set. Stefanos was playing exceptionally level till then but didn't let that affect his game as he stormed in and took the final set.
Also read: Injuries piling up this season as Rafael Nadal becomes latest casualty
In Women’s Singles, Angelique Kerber defeated Petra Kvitová 6-4, 3-3. Kvitova had to retire midway as she was suffering from stomach issues and began struggling in the second set. Kerber will face Ashleigh Barty who defeated Barbora Krejcikova in straight sets. Barty was simply unstoppable in the match as she played calm and rallied hard to take the first set 6-2 and in the second set Barbora was leading 4-2 until Barty took four straight games to take the match. Barty has been too good in the last few matches as her patience paid off in this match.
Karolina Pliskova also proceeded into the semifinals as Paula Badosa had to retire in the second set. Paula had to pull out as she suffered a shoulder injury, injuries are becoming a major concern as the schedule is getting tighter for the players. Pliskova will next face Jil Teichmann who put up an excellent performance against Olympic champion Belinda Bencic. She sent a warning for the semifinal clash with a resounding 6-3, 6-2 victory over Belinda. Belinda simply couldn't match her opponent’s intensity.
In Men’s Doubles, Fabio Fognini and Marcelo Arévalo shocked Toronto champions Joe Salisbury and Rajeev Ram as they defeated them in straight sets. They will now play against Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballo for a place in the final. Hubert Hurkacz and Jannik Sinner after defeating the top seeds Nikola Mektić and Mate Pavić in round 16 couldn't repeat their upset as they lost to American pair of Austin Krajicek and Steve Johnson.
In Women’s Doubles, Zhang Shuai and Samantha Stosur overcame Anna Blinkova and Allaksandra Sasnovich in three sets to book a place in the final. In the second semifinal Gabriela Dabrowski and Luisa Stefani who also had a tough time against Barbora Krejčíková and Kateřina Siniaková. Gabriela Dabrowski and Luisa Stefani are into their second consecutive title match as they captured the Toronto Title last week.
Benoit Paire continues to impress in Cincinnati, Ashleigh Barty shines bright with a stellar performance
Cincinnati (Tennis news): In Men’s Singles, the big three have been missing here in the Cincinnati Masters 1000 but the action continues in the sport. Daniil Medvedev continued his impressive run as he ousted Grigor Dimtrov in straight sets. Daniil beat Dimitrov 6-3, 6-3 as he won 74 percent of his first serves and saved three breakpoints out of four as he looks to win the title here for a second time. Medvedev is looking in great form as it will be interesting to see how things turn out in the US Open.
Benoit Paire barely scraped through in his match against John Isner as he served 20 double faults but smashed 16 aces for victory. The first set saw Paire winning the tiebreak 1-7, in the next the tables turned as Isner took it 7-2 but in the third set the Frenchmen proved why on his best day he just couldn't be beaten as he took it 6-1 for a place in the quarterfinals.
Stefanos Tsitsipas showed why he is the Greek God as he rallied past Lorenzo Sonego to advance to the quarterfinals. Tsitsipas roared as he won the last point, showing how much it meant to him. Sonego played pitch perfect tennis as he hit 15 winners to three unforced errors and won 87 per cent of first serve points. There was hard hitting by both the players as there were 59 winners in total.
Andrey Rublev fiercely fought against Gael Monfils and the Cincinnati heat to advance into the quarterfinals. It was an entertaining match as Rublev showed his power and Monfils displayed his usual coverage of the court. Monfils was not well during the start of the set as threw up in a courtside can. Few words were exchanged as Rublev was not happy with the delay and the calling of physios between the matches.
Also read: Defending champion Dominic Thiem out of the U.S Open due to injury
In Women’s Singles, Ashleigh Barty booked a place in the quarterfinals with a ruthless performance against defending champion Victoria Azarenka. She beat Azarenka 6-0, 6-2 as the two time champion had no answer to Barty who will be looking into bringing this form of play to the US Open.
Naomi Osaka was not in her best form as she lost to Jil Teichmann in the round of 16, she had faced an early exit in the Tokyo Olympics as doubts arose over her form in recent tournaments. Jil Teichmann will certainly celebrate the biggest win of her career yet as she will look to replicate it in her next match.
Karolina Pliskova finally got revenge over Jessica Pegula as she had lost her last four matches against her. Pliskova made two sensational comebacks in the match, one better than the other. In the first set Pliskova was down 4-1 but turned around the game as she won five straight games to steal the set from Pegula. In the second set Pliskova was again in danger as she was down 0-5 and again won five consecutive games but Pegula took the next game and was looking to win the set but Pliskova managed to save that well as she took it to tiebreak and finished the match in over an hour and 24 minutes.
In Men’s Doubles, Juan Sebastián Cabal and Robert Farah defeated Fabrice Martin and Filip Krajinović 7-6(7-3), 6-4 and will face Michael Venus and Tim Pütz in the quarterfinal. Hubert Hurkacz and Jannik Sinner will face top seeds and Toronto finalists Nikola Mektić and Mate Pavić in the round of 16. The top seeds will be playing their first match here and will expect to lift the trophy here.
In Women’s Doubles, Zhang Shuai and Samantha Stosur went past Květa Peschke and Ellen Perez in the round of 16. The pair took the first set 6-3 but lost in the second set with a similar score and in the third set they closed it out with a 10-6 victory. Gabriela Dabrowski and Luisa Stefani are into the semifinals as they beat Ena Shibahara and Shuko Aoyama 6-3, 6-3 to remain favourites in the tournament.
Jannik, Opelka and Murray stumble in Cincinnati, Halep withdraws due to injury
Cincinnati (Tennis news): In Men’s Singles, Reily Opelka failed to advance to the round of 16 as Casper Ruud emerged winner in a three set battle which involved two tie breaks in the Cincinnati Masters 1000. It took two hours and 25 minutes for Casper to record his 100th career win and even bageled the 6 foot 11 inch American. In the first set, there was nothing to separate the two as a tie break saw Opelka marching ahead and in the second set Casper was unstoppable as his opponent could not win a single game. With one set a piece, the decisive set was bound to test them both as Casper finally won the match with a tiebreak. Andy Murray will have to wait for a third title here as he was beaten by Hubert Hurkacz 7-6(7-4), 6-3 in the round of 32.
Jannik Sinner fell to John Isner in the round of 32, Sinner started well by taking the first set 7-5 but Isner fought back in the next set by winning the tiebreak 7-4. In the third set, Isner took off well and continued the rhythm to win the match. Gael Monfils became the 11th active player to secure 500 career wins as he sprinted past Alex de Minaur with a 6-3, 7-5 victory. He is second to Richard Gasquet in most career wins by a Frenchman in the tour and will be facing hard hitter Andrey Rublev in round of 16. Daniil Medvedev will be facing Grigor Dimitrov for a place in the quarterfinal as both the players secured straight set victories over Mackenzie McDonald and Alexander Bublik respectively. The pair has met thrice with Medvedev coming out on top on the last two occasions.
Also read: Mental health taking a toll on athletes as Osaka leaves press conference in tears in Cincinnati
In Women’s Singles, Simona Halep had to issue a walkover to Jessica Pegula as she suffered a leg injury in the previous round. She hopes to be fit for the US Open which starts in 11 days. Garbiñe Muguruza advanced to the round of 16 as she swept past Caroline Garcia while conceding just seven games. She will be up against Barbora Krejčíková for a place in the quarterfinals, Belinda Bencic beat Shelby Rogers in straight sets, the first set was settled by a tiebreak and the second was lopsided as Bencic won 6-1 to set up a match against Karolína Muchová in round of 16. Paula Badosa continued her fightback as she beat third seed Aryna Sabalenka in a two hour three set encounter. Sabalenka took the first set 7-5 but Paula came back strong in the second set by taking it 6-2. The third set finally saw Paula reaching the finishing line and setting up a clash against Elena Rybakina. Ons Jabeur defeated Iga Swiatek in an hour and eighteen minutes, she had beaten Swiatek in Wimbledon and dominated her opponent with a 6-3, 6-3 victory as she will next face Petra Kvitova.
In Men’s Doubles,Hubert Hurkacz and Jannik Sinner beat Dan Evans and Neal Skupski 6-3, 3-6, 10-3 to proceed into the round of 16. Horacio Zeballos and Marcel Granollers had to struggle a bit as they overcame Andrey Rublev and Karen Khachanov 7-6(9-7), 7-5 as they advanced into the quarterfinals. Joining them will be the pair of Fabio Fognini and Marcelo Arévalo who beat Kevin Krawietz and Horia Tecău. They had lost the first 6-3 but finished strong as they took the next two sets 7-5, 10-7.
In Women’s Doubles, Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Iga Świątek went through to the quarterfinals as they emerged victorious against Darija Jurak and Andreja Klepač in a three set encounter. The first set saw them losing 5-7, but then the two renaming sets saw them finishing on top. Zhang Shuai and Samantha Stosur recorded a win against Bernarda Pera and Magda Linette to enter the round of 16 where they will be up against Květa Peschke and Ellen Perez.
Dimtrov and Berrettini notch up victories as Giorgi gets knocked out in Cincinnati
Cincinnati (Tennis news): In Men’s Singles, John Isner had a rough start in his opening match against Cameron Norrie in Cincinnati Masters 1000. Norrie raced off to take the first set as Isner was looking at an early exit, in the second set both were players going head to head and a tiebreak was needed to separate the two. Isner took the tiebreak 7-5 as he avoided defeat and in the final set the American made no mistake as he won the match 4-6, 7-6(7-5), 6-4. Isner served his way into the record books as he became the second player to cross the 13,000 aces mark in the match. Ivo Karlovic leads the chart with 13,709 aces followed by Isner and Roger Federer. Isner will next face Jannik Sinner in the next round while another huge server Reily Opelka also needed three sets to advance against Corentin Moutet.
Opelka started strong as he took the first set 7-6(7-3), Corentin fought back to take the second set 6-4. The final set saw Opelka securing victory as he took it 6-4 and will next take on Casper Ruud. Wimbledon runner up Matteo Berrettini made a return to the tour by defeating Albert Ramos-Vinolas 6-7(5-7), 6-3, 7-5 in his first match since his incredible run on grass. Grigor Dimtrov defeated Roberto Bautista Agut in straight sets to set up an exciting contest against Alexander Bublik, this will be their third meeting and they last met in Wimbledon this year where Bublik prevailed. Benoit Paire secured his third win against Denis Shapovalov, he overcame Denis 6-3, 4-6, 7-5 as he looks in form this time around. The young Canadian had an early exit in the Toronto Open as well in the same round of 32 and will look to be his old self as he comes back for the US Open.
Also read: Paire and Shapovalov battle in round three as Murray advances in Cincinnati
In Women’s Singles, Jessica Pegula was in incredible form when she demolished Camila Giorgi when she secured victory as Camila could only win four games in total. Jessica will next face former world number Simona Halep, Halep had earlier defeated Magda Linette and had issues in the second set. Halep won the first set 6-4 and Magda came back with equal power by taking the second set 6-3 but the decisive set saw the two time grand slam winner conceding just a single to take it 6-1. Belinda Bencic also announced her return with a victory after winning the Gold in Singles at the Tokyo Olympics. She won her match against Markéta Vondroušová 6-3,7-5 to set up a round of 32 match against Shelby Rogers. Markéta Vondroušová had upset Naomi Osaka in the third of the Tokyo Olympics, Osaka who finished as runner up last year to Azarenka will start her campaign against teenager Coco Gauff who breezed past Hsieh Su-wei. Victoria Azarenka beat Ludmilla Samsonova 6-2,6-3 in her opening match, Azarenka had won here last year and back in 2013.
In Men’s Doubles, Rohan Bopanna and Ivan Dodig exited in their opening match as they lost 1-6, 6-4, 10-7 to Filip Krajinović and Fabrice Martin. It was a tough defeat as they took the first set and things looked set for a victory. They lost the second set and could not stage a dramatic run down the finish line in the final set. John Peers and Filip Polasek shook off a first set setback and took the next two sets against Luke Saville and Matwe Middelkoop to confirm a showdown with Alex de Minaur and Cameron Norrie.
In Women’s Doubles, Japanese pair of Ena Shibahara and Shuko Aoyama toppled Jeļena Ostapenko and Jil Teichman without much trouble with a 6-3, 6-3 victory. Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Iga Świątek won a marathon match against Petra Martić and Shelby Rogers when finally the scorecard read 2-6, 7-5, 10-5 and they will next face the pair of Darija Jurak and Andreja Klepač in the round of 16.
Paire and Shapovalov battle in round three as Murray advances in Cincinnati
Cincinnati (Tennis news): In Men’s Singles, Denis Shapovalov will face Benoit Paire for a fourth time as the pair last met two years ago, this is the second time they are meeting in a Masters 1000 after their Madrid clash three years ago and Paire leads their head to head with two victories as the Canadian has one which was the first time they met in Madrid. Andy Murray started his Cincinnati Open in style as he defeated Richard Gasquet in straight sets to enter the third round. Alex de Minaur had to come back strong as he was bageled by Filip Krajinović in the first set but the young Aussie did not back down and took the next two sets to set up a third round encounter with Jannik Sinner. Jannik had earlier beaten Federico Delbonis in straight sets to proceed to the third round. Karen Khachanov beat Kevin Anderson 6-2, 6-4 and will lock horns with Felix Auger Aliassime. Felix had to struggle a bit against Márton Fucsovics in the first set as it went till tiebreak, Fucsovics even had a set point at 5-4 only to be broken and in the tiebreak Felix took seven consecutive points to take the first set and in the second set he had it easy.
Also read: Cincinnati Open looks promising as two weeks left for the final Slam of the year
In Women’s Singles, Paula Badosa saved 5 matchpoints against Petra Martic in the second round. Martic had three match points while she was serving 5-4 and even Paula had two match points when she was leading 6-5 but both of them couldn’t finish it. It eventually led to the tiebreak with each one having more than one match points and finally after 2 hours and 34 minutes, Paula sealed with 10-9 in the tiebreak. With her heroics she will next face Aryna Sabalenka in the third round. Toronto Open winner Camila Giorgi will face Jessica Pegula for the second consecutive time as the pair met in the semifinals of the Toronto Open, Angelique Kerber had it easy against Maria Sakkari as she came out on firing with 6-2, 6-2 victory and will face Tokyo Olympics Bronze medallist Elina Svitolina in the fourth round. Coco Gauff will start her campaign against Hsieh Su-wei, an opponent twice her age. Simona Halep will also begin today she is up against Magda Linette who reached the semifinals in doubles of the Toronto Open.
In Men’s Doubles, Rohan Bopanna and Ivan Dodig are set to face Filip Krajinović and Fabrice Martin in their opening match. The American pair of Frances Tiafoe and Nicholas Monroe defeated Andrey Golubev and Andreas Miles 7-6(7-5),7-5 in the third round. They will be facing Toronto champions Joe Salisbury and Rajeev Ram for place in the Quarterfinals.
In the Women’s Doubles, Gabriela Dabrowski and Luisa Stefani fresh off from their Toronto title will begin here by competing against Anna Danilina and Yarslova Shvedova in the third round.
Sania Mirza is back as this is her first event after the Olympics, she is paired up with Ons Jabeur and they will be up against Veronika Kudermetova and Elena Rybakina in their first match.
Canadians crash out in Toronto as Medvedev looks to reach second final
Toronto (Tennis news): In Men’s Singles, Daniil Medvedev defeated Alexander Bublik in three sets to reach the round of 16 in the Toronto Masters 1000. Bublik started off strong as he took the first set but could not carry on the momentum as Medvedev began to find his form and took the next two sets. He will be facing James Duckworth who caused an upset when he defeated Jannik Sinner in the round of 32. The 2018 runner up Stefanos Tsitsipas will face Karen Khachanov in round of 16, Khachanov earlier recorded a straight set victory over Aslan Karatsev to set up a match against the Greek god. Canadians Denis Shapovalov and Felix Auger Aliassime fell in round 2 as they suffered losses against Frances Tiafoe and Dušan Lajović respectively. The tournament saw its second withdrawal as Hubert Hurkacz did not need to step on court to progress to the next round when he received a walkover from Kei Nishikori who pulled out of the tournament with a shoulder injury. Frenchmen Gael Monfils looked in good form when he defeated John Millman in three sets as he will play Frances Tiafoe in the round of 16.
Also read: Shanghai Masters 1000 cancelled this year as COVID-19 cases rise in China
In the Women’s Singles, Danielle Collins staged an emphatic victory over Simona Halep in three sets as she will face Jessica Pegula in the round of 16. Elina Svitolina was also knocked out in the round of 32 as she lost to Britain’s Johanna Konta.
In Men’s Doubles Ivan Dodig and Rohan Bopanna emerged victorious over Simone Bolelli and Máximo González in the round of 16. In the Women’s doubles Ellen Perez and Květa Peschke are into the Quarterfinals and will be facing Bernarda Pera and Magda Linette.
Serena, Venus Williams and Sofia Kenin have pulled out of the Cincinnati Open as injuries are piling up before the US Open. Serena Williams is out with a leg injury and Sofia Kenin is down with a foot injury. Serena has been suffering with injury this year as she had to withdraw in the beginning of the season in Yarra Valley Classic as well as recently in Wimbledon.
Rafael Nadal looking for a Hatrick in Toronto, chases record Masters 1000 title
The Canadian Open, which is currently known as the National Bank Open will be getting underway today in Toronto. The 5th masters 1000 of the season is coming back as it was not played last year due to the pandemic. First started in 1881, the Canadian Open is the second oldest tennis tournament in the world after Wimbledon. Rafael Nadal has won the tournament five times with his first title coming in 2005 when he beat Andre Agassi in the final. The top players will be seen in action as double defending champion Rafael Nadal will be looking to make up for his early exit in the Washington Open. The Spaniard will also be looking to win a record 37th Masters 1000 title and is currently on par with Novak Djokovic with 36 titles. Daniil Medvedev will be looking to make up for his 2019 final loss to Nadal and Stefanos Tsitsipas will also be looking to win here as he was the runner up in 2018 after losing to Nadal.
Also read: Bopanna retains place in Indian team for Davis Cup tie against Finland in September
Nick Kyrgios has been given a wildcard and will be looking to improve from his last two outings here, as he failed to win a match in both. He will be seen playing his first match against big server Reilly Opelka. Jannik Sinner, fresh off from winning the Washington Open will be looking to continue his fine run here. There can be a lot of surprises as Grigor Dimitrov will be playing and will be looking to come up good as he has had a rather tough year, Gael Monfils is also in contention as he has also struggled this year and will be looking for his first title of the season. Kei Nishikori is back on tour as he reached the semifinal of the Washington Open and was beaten by Mackenzie McDonald. Lloyd Harris caused an uproar when he beat Rafael Nadal on his route to winning the title in the Washington Open.
In Tennis news, Novak Djokovic will not be playing this time as he is resting after his Olympic heartbreak due to a hectic schedule. Roger Federer who turned 40 yesterday will not be playing as he is suffering from a knee injury. Tokyo Olympics Singles Gold medalist Alexander Zverev is resting as he needs to recover for the US Open which starts on 30th. Dominic Thiem will also not be seen in action as he is still recovering from a wrist injury while other big names like Stan Wawrinka have withdrawn from the tournament because of a surgery on his left foot in July and David Goffin would not be seen on court because of an ankle injury. Lorenzo Musetti was not allowed to play as he had left his Covid bubble and it was considered as a breach of protocol.
Interesting fact: Ramanathan Krishnan won the Canadian Open in 1968, he remains the only Indian player to do so.