Tennis-X Weekend Wrap, Previews: Djokovic, Tsonga Win
Shanghai ATP Masters 1000
Seeds: Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Juan Martin del Potro, Andy Roddick, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Nikolay Davydenko, Fernando Verdasco, Gilles Simon, Robin Soderling, Fernando Gonzalez, Gael Monfils, Marin Cilic, Radek Stepanek, Tommy Robredo, Tommy Haas, David Ferrer
Floaters: James Blake, Ivo Karlovic, Paul-Henri Mathieu, Lleyton Hewitt, John Isner, Ivan Ljubicic, Richard Gasquet, Juan Carlos Ferrero, (WC) Marat Safin, (WC) Ernests Gulbis, Tomas Berdych
Notes: Openers of interest include Blake vs. Karlovic, (11) Monfils vs. Mathieu in an all-French, Hewitt vs. Isner, (16) Ferrer vs. Gasquet, (13) Stepanek vs. Ferrero, (12) Cilic vs. Berdych; a first-time ATP event.
HP Japan Women’s Open Tennis 2009
Seeds: Caroline Wozniacki, Marion Bartoli, Sam Stosur, Francesca Schiavone, Shahar Peer, Aleksandra Woniak, Melinda Czink, Yaroslava Shvedova
Floaters: Shuai Peng, Sania Mirza, Maria Kirilenko
Notes: Openers of interest include (3) Stosur vs. Peng, (5) Peer vs. Mirza; Wozniacki is the defending champ.
GENERALI Ladies Linz
Seeds: Flavia Pennetta, Aggie Radwanska, Yanina Wickmayer, Carla Suarez Navarro, Iveta Benesova, Sorana Cirstea, Lucie Safarova, Sara Errani
Floaters: Alize Cornet
Djokovic, Bryans Win China Open
No. 2 seed Novak Djokovic fended off No. 8 seed Marin Cilic 6-2, 7-6 on Sunday for the China Open title, while the Bryan brothers defeated Andy Roddick and Mark Knowles in the doubles final.
“So far I’ve had lots of success on Asian soil and in Beijing I have only the best memories,” Djokovic said. “Last year I reached the late stages of the Olympics and won the bronze medal and this year I won the tournament. So I have a great record here.”
Cilic said a rain delay during the match took some of the fight out of him.
“I think the rain delay took something more out of me than from him and he came back really good,” Cilic said. “In the second set I was playing well and was three times a break up, twice serving for the set, but in some moments I missed very easy balls and let him off the hook…Beating Nadal and Davydenko, two matches in a row, was unbelievable for me and coming today in the final I felt really good.”
With the win Djokovic overtakes Andy Murray to rise to the No. 3 ranking.
The Bryans defeated their American compatriot Roddick and the Bahamian Knowles 6-2, 6-4.
“We were ready for a dog fight,” Bob Bryan said. “When you’ve got one of the best singles players of our era playing with one of the best doubles players of our era it’s going to make for a great match up. Mike and I came out focused and played one of the best matches we’ve played in a long time.”
Tsonga Tops Youzhny to Lift Japan Open Title
No. 2-seeded Jo-Wilfried Tsonga turned back unseeded Russian Mikhail Youzhny 6-3, 6-3 on Sunday to capture the Japan Open title.
“I am so happy to win another title and this puts me closer to (qualifying for the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in) London,” Tsonga said. “I just played so well in the semifinals and final here. I don’t know what happened but I just felt so comfortable on court.”
Ranked No. 49, Youzhny ousted three seeded players en route to the final.
Kuzy Beats Aggie for China Open Crown
Svetlana Kuznetsova defeated Agnieszka Radwanska 6-2, 6-4 on Sunday to claim her third title of the year at the China Open.
Radwanska had a perfect 4-0 career record in championship matches entering the final with Kuznetsova.
“Svetlana played really well today,” Radwanska said. “She had nothing to lose either — she’s already going to the Sony Ericsson Championships. I’m happy to come back to the Top 10 after this tournament. I finished last year in the Top 10. I’ve done well in two of the most important tournaments after the US Open.”
The China Open title was sweet relief for the Russian after repeatedly being denied in the past.
“In the finals I lost here, I lost to Serena Williams — who hit so many aces in that match, in 2004 — and Jelena Jankovic last year,” Kuznetsova said. “The other night when we had the official reception, I stood beside Serena and told her I remembered that match. But I love the atmosphere here and I try to bring my best in the big matches.”
Serena Williams, who again this week failed in her quest to win a first WTA Tour event outside of a Grand Slam, nonetheless overtook Dinara Safina to reclaim the No. 1 ranking
TENNIS-X NEWS, NOTES, QUOTES AND GRIT
SERENA SMART, WON’T THREATEN TO KILL LINESPEOPLE IN THE FUTURE — Serena Williams on learning from her US Open outburst: “Obviously I’d be not smart if I were to do the same thing. It’s important for people to learn from things they did in the past, and I learned and I would never do the same thing.” — Is that English, or even an adult speaking?
SAM SEDATED — Bonnie Ford of ESPN reports that Sam Querrey had to be sedated at the hospital in China when they brought him in for emergency surgery to fix him up after his arm was badly cut after falling through a glass table. “I couldn’t stop crying and shaking because I didn’t know how bad it was,” Querrey said. Writes Ford, “The glass left a nearly 3-inch-long gouge in Querrey’s forearm muscle but did not sever it — and also barely missed a nerve that, if damaged, could have compromised Querrey’s chances of ever playing again.”
SAFINA SETS NO. 1 UPSET MARK — Dinara Safina lost the No. 1 ranking to Serena Williams after losing first round at the China Open. Safina set a record of another kind, becoming the singular No. 1-rank holder to lose to the lowest-ranked player a No. 1 has ever lost to in No. 226-ranked Zhang Shuai, a wildcard entry into the event. The loss let Ana Ivanovic off the hook, as the Serb previously held that record when she lost to No. 188-ranked Julie Coin at the 2008 US Open. A sign of greater depth in women’s tennis, as some zealous ESPN female TV personalities would likely exclaim? Hardly. This is Safina and Ivanovic we’re talking about, two players that combined have less self-belief in pressure situations than Roger Federer’s discarded nail clippings. Said Safina after the loss, “I would like to take some break now…I’m very upset with myself.”…
“I’LL F*****G KILL YOU” = “GRITTY” IN WTA TOUR-SPEAK — WTA CEO Stacey Allaster on Serena Williams re-taking the No. 1 ranking: “Serena has achieved great results this year, impressing everyone with her gritty performances, especially at the Grand Slams.” By “gritty” if you mean ‘impressively making a little asian linesperson wet herself and almost have a heart attack by screaming she was going to kill her and shove a f*****g ball down her throat,’ we agree. Gritty. Guess that performance was WTA gritty-approved. Perhaps we’ll see another Serena gritty outburst at the 2010 Australian Open, ‘impressing everyone,’ etc…
“TOP” PLAYERS — Ana Ivanovic on her terrible, injury-ridden 2009 campaign: “On the positive side, I am still No. 11 in the world. I have no clue how I am ranked so highly, but to look on the bright side, I can’t play any worse than I did this year and I’m still in the Top 20!” — and barely out of the Top 10. She is currently 24-14 on the year, since Wimbledon losing second round at LA, Cincy and Toronto, and first round at the US Open and Tokyo…
Andy Murray pulled from Shanghai to give his wrist more time to heal…
RETIRE ALREADY — Amelie Mauresmo, writing on her website about trying to pull the trigger on retirement: “Since I came back from the US Open, I have been trying to practice but I did not find the desire to get back to competition. I do not want to rush things. I still give myself some time before making a decision regarding the remainder of my career.”…
LET’S GO PHOTOSHOPPING — Serena Williams says she loves her nude “classy and not trampy” cover shot for the “Body Issue” of ESPN the Magazine…
DOKIC DAD DIETS — According to ANI, Jelena Dokic’s father has launched a hunger strike to protest against his 15-month jail sentence for threatening Australia’s ambassador to Serbia. Damir Dokic’s lawyer Bosiljka Djukic said she had been informed that her client was no longer taking any food, water or medicines in prison. The 50-year-old Dokic is serving his sentence in the northern Serbia town of Sremska Mitrovica. He was arrested in May after reportedly saying he would blow up Australian ambassador Claire Birgin’s car…
Also Check Out:
Dementieva on Top at Kuala Lumpur; WTA Previews
Davis Cup Wrap: Czechs at Croatia, Israel at Spain in Semis
Serbia Advances, U.S. Beat by Spain in Davis Cup; Wrap & Previews
Almagro, Montanes, Kanepi, Szavay Win Titles: Weekend Wrap
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