Sean Randall covered the Federer-Dubai wrap, so here’s the rest of the weekend.
No. 7 seed Kevin Anderson of South Africa stopped the run of Australian qualifier Marinko Matosevic 6-4, 7-6(2) at the ATP Delray Beach International Tennis Championships on Sunday to win his second career title.
Matosevic fought off eight break points in the second set before Anderson benefited from the Aussie’s unforced errors to close it out in the tiebreaker.
“I think at the end, I felt I was mentally composed throughout,” Anderson said. “I didn’t let any patches of bad tennis affect my mindset…It’s my first one in the United States, which is great. I feel apart from South Africa, this is my new home. My wife Kelsey was here for the weekend.”
Anderson improved to 2-1 in career finals, and Matosevic, who had never won back-to-back matches before this week, dropped to 0-1. “My energy levels were pretty low,” said Matosevic. “I just couldn’t serve well today, but credit to Kevin. He was the better player today.”
Chinese Taipei qualifier Hsieh Su-Wei was the surprise winner of the WTA Kuala Lumpur title, outlasting No. 5 seed Petra Martic who retired with heat illness at 2-6, 7-5, 4-1 ret.
Earlier in the day Martic was drained in a three-set semifinal make-up win over No. 2 seed Jelena Jankovic, saving a match point after three hours on court. Su-Wei’s BMW Malaysian Open title was only the second WTA title for a player from Chinese Taipei after six-time winner Wang Shi-Ting.
“I never expected to win this,” said the 26-year-old Su-Wei on her first WTA title. “It wasn’t easy for me as I couldn’t sleep upon arriving and had to play the very next day. In a way I was lucky, but this week will be with me for as long as I can remember.”
In the all-Spanish men’s Acapulco final, David Ferrer improved to 18-1 on the year, defeating Fernando “Hot Sauce” Verdasco 6-1, 6-1 for his third straight Abierto Mexicano Telcel crown.
Ferrer was 3-6 on clay against Hot Sauce entering the match but dominated his compatriot with the giant lefty forehand.
“I felt I was very solid and my game went really well,” Ferrer said. “As Fernando hits so hard, I knew I had to be solid and counter him and I think I did it very well, especially at the beginning. I also know Fernando didn’t play his best tennis today but that’s tennis. You have good days and sometimes bad days.”
Ferrer improved to 14-14 in career finals while Hot Sauce dropped to 5-12.
In the all-Italian women’s final at Acapulco, Sara Errani defeated Flavia Pennetta 5-7, 7-6(2), 6-0 for the Abierto Mexicano Telcel championship, also claiming the doubles title with Roberta Vinci.
Errani improved to 3-3 in career finals, her first title since 2008, while Pennetta fell to 9-13 in career finals. It was the seventh consecutive Acapulco final reached for Pennetta.
“I made a lot of mistakes in the tiebreak and in the third set I was tired physically and it went really fast,” Pennetta said.
TENNIS-X NEWS, NOTES, QUOTES AND BARBS
NADAL, SPANISH ATHLETES NO DOPES? – The Spanish tennis federation says it is going to sue TV channel Canal Plus France for using its logo in a satirical video that suggested Rafael Nadal and other Spanish athletes are dopers. The French satire puppet show “Les Guignols” showed, according to the NYT, “a Nadal-like puppet urinating into his car’s gas tank before speeding off. The video ends with the message, ‘Spanish athletes: they don’t win by chance,’ displayed among the logos of several Spanish sports federations…” Funny stuff. Better lawyer-up. The incident was on the same day the Court of Arbitration for Sport suspended the Spanish cyclist Alberto “I must have eaten some tainted meat” Contador for two years for doping, and after late last year Yannick Noah wrote a column in Le Monde saying Spanish athletes were dopers.
In Dubai, Roger Federer went on a rambling jag on retaking the No. 1 ranking: “I’m a believer that if I do things the right way it will come back. I just have to keep working hard and hopefully I’ll get back to it and break the record. I feel like if I play really well from here ’til the US Open, obviously there’s a shot. But then there’s a shot for probably 10 players to do that. I feel like I’m on a good run right now. I’ve won a lot of tournaments in a short period of time, which obviously gives me a lot of confidence. But the focus right now is to try and play well day-by-day, make sure I get through a tough stretch here between Dubai and Miami. World No. 1 will probably be decided for the majority of players between the French Open and US Open period where there are so many highlights.”…In her recently-release memoir, Spanish Fed Cup captain Arantxa Sanchez-Vicario says her parents mismanaged her $60 million in career earnings and she is now broke, and estranged from her parents and brothers Emilio and Javier. She also says she owes boatloads in back taxes…Kei Nishikori wasn’t born yet when Japan was last in the Davis Cup World Group…Venus Williams is on the entry list for Miami, and has also entered Charleston…Fernando Gonzalez held an emotional press conference in Chile announcing that the ATP event in Miami will be his last. “I realized that I didn’t have the energy that I needed, nor am I prepared to do all I need to in order to be where I want to be,” said Gonzalez, who over the years has fought against back, knee, hip and other injuries. “Given the respect tennis deserves, I have decided to step aside. Tennis has given me some incredible experiences, and I’ve met many admirable, wonderful people.”…Caroline Wozniacki says it’s nice not to be the No. 1-ranked player: “It’s just nice that actually I don’t get the question every press conference, ‘You’re No. 1 but haven’t won a Grand Slam?’ So at least I get that off my back and I can actually just play and people don’t get disappointed if I lose a finals or semifinals, which, you know, would be a disaster before. Now someone else can have that, and I can just play.”…After dealing with so many injuries of late, Andy Roddick tells USA Today he is lowering his expectations in 2012, but still looks to re-enter the Top 10: “My mindset right now isn’t winning Wimbledon. It’s getting healthy and getting right and putting numerous matches together in a row.” Roddick (or his pride) added that his long-time critics who say he shouldn’t stand 10 feet behind the baseline and should go for his forehand more can suck it. “I’m not an idiot. I understand the process of tennis. I know how to play tennis. I’ve done it for a long time. I have been very good at it.”…Here comes the oil money — The USTA announced that (no joke) Emirates Airline is now the “Official Airline of the US Open” and the title sponsor of the “Emirates Airline US Open Series” for the next seven years…Congrats on your new three-year racquet deal with Babolat Sam Querrey, how many first round matches have you lost since picking up that thing? Maybe the cash should have followed the results instead of hoping for the reverse…Kim Clijsters has pulled from Indian Wells due to her ongoing ankle injury…Roger Federer reportedly received $1 million under the table to play Rotterdam…How much did Mardy Fish NOT receive from Memphis to blow off the event and play Marseille (France) the same week?…Lleyton Hewitt will be out of action for roughly four months after foot surgery.
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