Federer, Clijsters Win Titles; Davenport Back from Bad Back

Posted on October 3, 2005

Federer Continues Record 2005 Year with Bangkok Title

World No. 1 Roger Federer increased a long line of records Sunday by defeating Brit-Scot rookie Andy Murray 6-3, 7-5 Sunday in the final of the ATP stop at Bangkok.

The Swiss increased his current winning streak in finals to 24, extended his match win streak to 31, successfully defended a title for the seventh time in 2005, won a fifth consecutive title for the first time in his career, and won his career-best 11th title on a season.

"He was hanging tough on my service games and broke me at 6-4, 3-2," Federer said. "I had to be careful not to let the momentum shift, and at the end I had to play some tough points to stay in control and close it out...Murray has a big repertoire of shots, a lot of qualities, however, he's got to figure out how he wants to use his potential. If he works hard he'll be a good player. I was impressed by him."

Murray said he got a handle on his game after a nervous start.

"I started erratic. My first service game I was up 40-15 and then lost it for him to race to a 3-0 lead after he held serve," Murray said. "When I won my second game, I started to relax more. You feel like you have to go for it against him and I was going for the lines too much."

In the doubles final, top seeds Paul Hanley and Leander Paes defeated Israel's Jonathan Erlich and Andy Ram 5-6(5), 6-1, 6-2 in the ATP's experimental confusing scoring system to win their first title as a team.

Bjorkman Wins 1st Title in 3 Years at ATP Vietnam Open

Unseeded Swede Jonas Bjorkman kept No. 3-seeded Czech Radek Stepanek winless in three career finals Sunday at the ATP stop in Ho Chi Minh with a 6-3, 7-6(4) win Sunday for his first singles title since 2002.

"Thanks to winning at the Davis Cup in New Delhi two weeks ago, I gained back my confidence," Bjorkman said. "And today I played a perfect match...I would like to say thanks to Thomas Johansson for his encouragement and for his advice and tips, which he could draw from his loss yesterday to Stepanek. It did work today for my game."

Bjorkman avoided getting into rallies with the Czech, keeping Stepanek from getting a rhythm.

"Jonas played a perfect match today," Stepanek said. "I was caught up by his very quick playing from the beginning with his kick serves, his returns, passing shots...all of them were so powerful. He didn't let me play much, he controlled the game and played very aggressively."

In the doubles final Burgsmuller/Kohlschreiber defeated Fisher/Lindstedt for their first title as a team.

Andreev Wins 2nd 2005 Title at ATP Palermo

Unseeded Russian Igor Andreev rebounded from a bagel first set to defeat homecountry Italian and No. 6 seed Filippo Volandri 0-6, 6-1, 6-3 for his second title of the year at the ATP claycourt stop in Palermo.

"I wasn't prepared in the first set, I could not warm up properly," Andreev said. "When I broke him in the first game of the second set, the match turned around. That was the key. I started feeling better and took control of the match."

For Volandri, who has yet to win a title in 2005, it was a second consecutive loss in the Palermo final.

"I will win here one day, I promise," Volandri said. "I am really disappointed as I wanted to win my first ATP title in Italy. I started very well but against someone like him you have to play 100% each point. The third set was very close but I was unlucky on a couple of occasions. He really impressed me in the last two sets, he got everything back."

In the all-unseeded doubles final, Garcia/Hood defeated Fyrstenberg/Matkowski 6-2, 6-3 for their first title of the year as a team. Hood won his fourth doubles title in Palermo and his third consecutive.

Clijsters Wins 4th Straight at WTA Luxembourg

Kim Clijsters won her eighth title of the year and fourth consecutive at the WTA stop in Luxembourg Sunday, dismissing unseeded German riser Anna-Lena Groenefeld 6-2, 6-4.

"I played pretty well today and stayed aggressive because she is a tough opponent," said Clijsters, who is 26-1 career at the Luxembourg event. "This is where it all started for me so I'm really pleased to win again here today. One year ago I was injured, some months ago I was ranked around 130, and right now I am really pleased that I'm healthy and playing well."

Clijsters raised her career record against the German to 2-0.

"It was close in the beginning, and I had many chances in the first three games," Groenefeld said. "She is very experienced and she took her chances...Today maybe I went for it too much, but she puts lots of pressure on you so you have to go for your shots."

In the doubles final American Lisa Raymond and Aussie Sam Stosur won their third consecutive title, and third of the year, when they upset top seeds Cara Black and Rennae Stubbs 7-5, 6-1.

Vaidisova Wins Maiden 2005 Title at WTA Seoul

Czech teen Nicole Vaidisova won her first WTA title of the year Sunday, defeating top seed Jelena Jankovic 7-5, 6-3 in the final of the Hansol Korea Open Tennis Championships at Seoul.

It was the third career title for the 16-year-old.

Jankovic played through the final even though she suffered from illness.

"At one point in the match I thought I was going to throw up, I think maybe it was 6-5," Jankovic said. "If it wasn't a final maybe I would have retired."

In the doubles final the Taipai pair of Yung-Jan Chan and Chia-Jung Chuang won their first title as a team with a win over Jill Craybas and Natalie Grandin 6-2, 6-4.

Zi Zaps Vives for 1st Career Title at WTA Guangzhou

China's Yan Zi won her first career WTA Tour title Sunday at the Guangzhou International Women's Open, defeating No. 6 Spanish seed Nuria Llagostera Vives 6-4, 4-0 when Vives retired with a leg injury.

"I am very, very happy to win my first singles title," said Yan, who had never won even a minor league title. "Until this week, I really didn't think I ever would win one. The conditions were very difficult all week because of the extreme heat, but I managed to hold up against it."

Vives said the leg injury was more an impediment that the extreme heat.

"I just couldn't move today," Llagostera Vives said. "It wasn't the heat, it was because I hurt my leg and I just couldn't play properly. I had a very good week but I am disappointed that I couldn't play better today. Yan played very well and I give all the credit to her for playing a great match."

In the doubles final, Maria Elena Camerin and Emmanuelle Gagliardi captured their first title as a team with a win over Indian sisters Shikha Uberoi and Neha Uberoi 7-6(5), 6-3.

Davydenko Only Top 10 Representative at ATP Metz

Russian Nikolay Davydenko is the only Top 10 representative this week at the Open de Moselle, the ATP stop in Metz, joined by seeds Richard Gasquet, Ivan Ljubicic, Dominik Hrbaty, Robin Soderling, Gael Monfils, Davide Sanguinetti, and Nicolas Massu on the indoor hardcourts.

Early-round matches of interest are (7) Sanguinetti vs. top Romanian Andrei Pavel, (6) Monfils vs. Argentina's Juan Ignacio Chela, and (2) Gasquet vs. the hot-handed Karol Beck.

In last year's all-French final, qualifier Jerome Haehnel defeated the wildcard Gasquet 7-6(9), 6-4.

Scheduled for Monday at Metz are (3) Ljubicic vs. Acasuso, Zib vs. (5) Soderling, (8) Massu vs. Calleri, (1) Davydenko vs. Mello, and (WC) Ascione vs. (4) Hrbaty.

Puerta, Ginepri, Dent Feature at ATP Tokyo

This week the 48-draw at the AIG Japan Open Championships in Tokyo is the place to be on the ATP Tour, featuring only one Top 10 seed in Mariano Puerta, but a host of top wannabees in Radek Stepanek, Americans Robby Ginepri, Taylor Dent and Vince Spadea, Croat Mario Ancic, Russian Mikhail Youzhny, and Finn Jarkko Nieminen among the Top 8 of the 16 seeds.

All 16 seeds receive opening-round byes, but a few potential second-matches demanding closer inspection by punters including (14) Ivo Minar vs. comer Marcos "Bombs Over" Baghdatis, (5) Ancic vs. qualifier Jan-Michael Gambill or Dutchman Peter "Nuclear" Wessels, (3) Ginepri vs. German giant Alexander "My Serve Has" Popp, (13) Gilles Muller vs. Justin Gimel"blog," (7) Nieminen vs. former force Rainer Schuettler, (16) Juan Monaco vs. Wayne "The Serving Machine" Arthurs, and (4) Dent vs. Cali-Russian Dmitry Tursunov.

Czech Jiri Novak sits this one out with injury, last year as the No. 5 seed defeating the No. 7-seeded Dent 5-7, 6-1, 6-3 for the title.

On tap for Monday in Tokyo are (Q) Iwami vs. (Q) Taino, (WC) Ittogi vs. N.Lapentti, Baghdatis vs. Tipsarevic, Tursunov vs. Garcia-Lopez, Gambill vs. Wessels, Koubek vs. Phau, Gremelmayr vs. K.Kim, and Udomchoke vs. Karanusic.

Davenport Heads Loaded Field at WTA Filderstadt

Lindsay Davenport joins three fellow former No. 1s heading the loaded WTA field this week at Filderstadt, with the American attempting to defend her championship from 2004 where she defeated Amelie Mauresmo in the final.

Also among the Top 8 seeds are Kim Clijsters who has won four consecutive titles including the US Open, Mauresmo, former No. 1 Justine Henin-Hardenne, Russians Elena Dementieva, Nadia Petrova and Anastasia Myskina, and Swiss Patty Schnyder.

Maria Sharapova and the Williams sisters were withdrawals due to injury.

The Top 4 seeds receive byes in Filderstadt, but early-round matches of interest remain in (7) Schnyder vs. Serb riser Ana Ivanovic, (6) Petrova vs. last week's Luxembourg finalist Anna-Lena Groenefeld, and a potential (3) Mauresmo vs. last week's Seoul finalist Jelena Jankovic in the second round.

Scheduled for Monday in Filderstadt are Pennetta vs. Schruff, Shaughnessy vs. Hantuchova, and Safina vs. Kloesel.

Life's a Bych This Week at WTA Tashkent

The WTA Tour hits a new low this week with tour-events-that-should-be-challengers, featuring the Tashkent Open and top seed Ekaterna Bychkova, standing at No. 72 on the WTA Rankings.

Also among the seeds are the Ukraine's Alona Bondarenko, Italy's Antonella Serra Zanetti, Finland's Emma Laine, Dutchwoman Michaella Krajicek, France's Emilie Loit, Italian Maria Elena Camerin, and the No. 100-ranked Mara Santangelo.

In last year's final, unseeded Czech teen Nicole Vaidisova surprised No. 9 seed Virginie Razzano 5-7, 6-3, 6-2.

On court Monday are Tulyaganova vs. Savchuk, Strycova vs. Prakusya, Amanmuradova vs. A.Bondarenko, and Voskoboeva vs. Salerni.

Teens Vaidisova, Mirza Featured at WTA Tokyo

Russian Vera Zvonareva leads the seeds this week at the WTA stop in Tokyo, joined by a mix of veterans and up-and-comers in Czech Nicole Vaidisova fresh off her title at Seoul, France's Tatiana "Hot Pants" Golovin, Russian Maria Kirilenko, Japan veteran Ai Sugiyama, Argentina's Gisela Dulko, Japan's Shinobu Asagoe, and Indian Sania Mirza.

Matches of mild interest in the opening round are (3) Golovin vs. American hopeful Abigail Spears, and (5) Sugiyama vs. rising Russian Alina Jidkova.

Maria Sharapova fails to post to defend her title from 2004, when she spanked American Mashona Washington 6-0, 6-1 in the final.

On tap for Monday in Tokyo are Sucha vs. Obata, Asagoe vs. Vento-Kabchi, Nagyova vs. Garbin, and Fujiwara vs. Bammer.

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