Davydenko, Bryans Win Year-end Titles; Tennis-X Notes
No. 7-seeded Nikolay Davydenko of Russian eclipsed Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and the elite eight at the ATP World Tour Final, on Sunday defeating Juan Martin del Potro 6-3, 6-4 in the final to capture the title at the O2 Arena in London.
“In 2009, Davydenko forever on this trophy,” said the first Russian to win the year-end championship after finishing runner-up last year. “I think it’s amazing…for my name to be there is something amazing for me.”
Davydenko, who has yet to win a Grand Slam title, beat all four 2009 Slam winners in London — Nadal (Aussie Open), Federer (French and Wimbledon) and del Potro (US Open).
“This tournament has a great champion, like Nikolay,” said del Potro of the Russian, who ironically was brutally investigated for over a year by the ATP for alleged match-fixing.
“He’s very fast,” del Potro said of the Russian. “He plays like PlayStation. He runs down everything. It is very difficult to hit winners. But I think he is a great champion. Nobody knows how we can beat him.”
Davydenko missed the first five months of the 2009 season with a foot injury, but ended up with a perfect 5-0 record in tournament finals.
In the doubles final, Bob and Mike Bryan finished the year No. 1 by defeating Max Mirnyi and Andy Ram 7-6(5), 6-3, for their third year-end championship title.
Last year Daniel Nestor and Nenad Zimonjic finished No. 1 by beating the Bryans in the final, and this year the twins knocked the pair out of the top spot with their win in the final.
“It means so much,” said Bob Bryan. “It’s pretty much what we play for now. That’s the goal. Play well in the Slams, but the ultimate goal is to finish No. 1. We felt like it was stolen from us last year. Now we kind of crept up on those guys and stole it from them this year. We feel like it’s a little bit of a payback.”
It was the 56th career title for the Bryans, leaving them now only five titles behind the all-time tally of 61 by Australians Todd Woodbridge and Mark Woodforde, the “Woodies.”
“It’s in our sights now to catch them,” said Bob Bryan. “To be even considered in the same sentence with the Woodies makes us proud. Those guys are our idols. I assume if we stay healthy, it’s going to happen some day. Definitely want to honor those guys. That’s the standard of doubles. Those guys were the best players ever. To be mentioned with those two is awesome.”
TENNIS-X NEWS, NOTES, HAPPY HOLIDAYS, QUOTES AND BARBS
KANTARIAN REVEALED TO…MAKE BANK — So it was revealed that former USTA CEO of Professional Tennis Arlen Kantarian (who was cut because some in the organization thought he had too much power and was making too much money) made $9+ million in salary and bonuses in 2008 before he was let go. Too much cash? Not in light of what he achieved for the USTA from 2000-2008. “The USTA made a conscious decision to invest in its professional staff, and these investments have paid off,” said USTA spokesman Chris Widmaier. “Revenue at the USTA is up $93 million between 2000 and 2008, and we’ve hit other record benchmarks, including 30 million tennis players, the highest USTA membership in our history, and three consecutive record US Opens in attendance and revenue.” Up $93 million? Enough said. Question is, why did they cut him loose?…
PLAY THAT FUNKY MUSIC — Chris Kermode, managing director of the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals, talking to the Telegraph Sport on letting the players make an entrance on the court to music of their choice. “We asked the eight players’ agents if they would like to come out to their own choice of music. Some didn’t want too, it wasn’t their thing. Other players chose tracks that were unbelievably inappropriate. I can’t say who. I’m a massive Neil Young fan and I think the audience would be disgusted if I started playing that [particular song].”…
Andy Roddick on the knee injury that kept him out the of the ATP year-end championship: “The injury, it’s coming along well. We’re probably a little bit ahead of where we thought we would be. I’ve been able to run in a straight line, and hopefully next week I’ll be able to get back out on the courts and practice. The two weeks after Shanghai were probably about the two most boring weeks of my life. Literally I was on a couch. You went from 20 minutes on ice, 20 minutes off. Not a whole lot. There wasn’t a lot of walking to be done — or a lot of anything else, for that matter. The progress has been very good, especially in the last couple of weeks. I’ve been able to run in straight lines. Now it’s just a matter of getting the lateral movement back. I’m thankful that I’m able to make a full recovery for next season.”…
FOX Business news channel is now advertising on Tennis Channel? Tennis Channel viewers are the demographic for FOX News? Ewwwww….
The ATP Kitzbuhel event is moving to Nice in 2010, the first time Nice has hosted an ATP event since 1995. Reportedly Kitzbuhel local authorities failed to sign a stadium contract for the 65-year-old tournament to go on…
Rafael Nadal went 0-3 at the ATP year-end championship…
Andy Murray has split with his girlfriend of four years Kim Sears…
ANYONE HAVE A CALCULATOR? — From The Telegraph on the ATP’s bungle during the year-end championships: “The ATP was so unsure about how to interpret its own round-robin rules — even though they have been in place for several years — that Juan Mart�n del Potro said he did not receive confirmation that he had qualified for the semi-finals until 25 minutes after he had beaten Roger Federer, and Andy Murray was so bewildered about whether he was in or out that he posted a message on Twitter, the micro-blogging website, asking: “Does anyone know what’s going on?” For almost half an hour, there was no official confirmation that Federer and Del Potro had reached the semi-finals, and that Murray’s season was over — the great majority of the 17,000 spectators would have left the O2 Arena not knowing who had qualified from Group A. The spectators in the stadium received no information about the qualification scenarios.” — Boris Becker said it was a disgrace, and you know it is a low if Boris is dumping on you…
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