Murray, Wawrinka Rotterdam Winners, Dimitrov Falls; Bouchard Debuts Thursday In Antwerp
by Staff | February 11th, 2015, 6:55 pm
  • 58 Comments

Andy Murray began his brief winter indoor swing with a strong 6-3, 6-2 win over the dangerous Nicolas Mahut in the first round at Rotterdam.

The top-seeded Murray, who won the title in 2009, was playing his first match since the Australian Open final 10 days ago.

“Today I served well when I was behind up until the second to last service game,” Murray said. “I was down break points in the first three service games of the second set and came up with some big serves when I needed them. Hopefully I can do a little bit better tomorrow.”

Murray will face Vasek Pospisil tomorrow.

Stan Wawrinka was also a winner, needing three sets to oust Dutchman Jesse Huta Galung 6-3, 3-6, 6-3.

“It was a tough one,” Wawrinka said. “It’s never easy. You need to adapt to the conditions. It was an up and down match. I didn’t play my best game, but it’s good to win and get one more chance to play better tomorrow.”

Wawrinka, now ranked No. 8, will meet Guillermo Garcia-Lopez in second round play on Thursday.

Grigor Dimitrov saved a handful of matchpoints late against Gilles Muller, but it wasn’t enough as Muller, who never lost serve in the match, overcame a mini-break down to run the last three points of the match to win 6-2, 7-6(8) to advance to the quarterfinals.

Gael Monfils, Sergiy Stakhovsky and Andreas Seppi were also winners.

Tomas Berdych and Milos Raonic are also in action on Thursday.

In Antwerp, top seed Genie Bouchard opens against Mona Barthel. No. 2 seed Angelique Kerber will face former French Open champion Francesca Schiavone.

Bouchard will debut with new coach Sam Sumyk who use to be on Victoria Azarenka’s team.

“I’ve just started working with Sam. We’ve spent some time training in Montréal the past week or so, and now we’re here for our first tournament together,” said Bouchard. “I really respect him as a coach – he’s done great things. Nothing is guaranteed, but I hope he can help me improve and help me reach my goals.

“When I was looking for a coach I wanted someone who’s played or who’s been coaching someone who’d been there, getting to No.1 or winning Grand Slams, and he’s done that. He’s what I wanted.”

Early results in Memphis saw Sam Querrey ending the run of 18-year-old Jared Donaldson while 24-year-old American qaulifier Austin Krajicek stunned Ivo Karlovic in three. Top seed Kei Nishikori was in a third set with Ryan Harrison. John Isner plays tonight.

“It was a great match,” said Krajicek. “Obviously, Ivo has an amazing serve, so you don’t have a whole lot of chances. I played a really good tie-break in the first set… I tried to take what I could control, and I just got a little lucky there at the end.

“I’ve been working really hard for the last couple of years… Just being around the tour more and more, you kind of get some belief and know that you can play with these guys… It’s just a matter of time, just putting in the work and waiting for your time to play well, and today I think I capitalised pretty well and played a good match.”

THURSDAY ROTTERDAM SCHEDULE

CENTRE COURT start 11:00 am
J. Chardy (FRA) vs [8] G. Simon (FRA)
[3] T. Berdych (CZE) vs A. Seppi (ITA)
[1] A. Murray (GBR) vs V. Pospisil (CAN)
A Qureshi (PAK) / N Zimonjic (SRB) vs [3] J Rojer (NED) / H Tecau (ROU)
Not Before 7:30 pm
G. Garcia-Lopez (ESP) vs [4] S. Wawrinka (SUI)
S. Bolelli (ITA) vs [2] M. Raonic (CAN)

COURT 1 start 4:00 pm
[4] R Bopanna (IND) / D Nestor (CAN) vs D Inglot (GBR) / F Mergea (ROU)


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58 Comments for Murray, Wawrinka Rotterdam Winners, Dimitrov Falls; Bouchard Debuts Thursday In Antwerp

SG1 Says:

Austin Krajicek. Any relation?


Daniel Says:

If Murray wins Rotterdam he will pass Nadal and be #3. Nadal defends Rio title next week so can’t win points.
The week after Nadal plays Buenos Aires and can get 250 pts while Murray plays Dubai and will have to defend his QF points from Acapulco last year.
Kei is defending Menphis this week and don’t know if he will play Delray or go to heavy field in Dubai. This are the only possible rankings shift in next 3 weeks.
Wawrinka also have a shot but he would have to win Rotterdam and Dubai to improve his rankings


brando Says:

Good win. Just keep on working on that serve and the rest will just fall into place.


Hippy Chick Says:

First set was good,second was a bit hit and miss,but the win is what counts,as Brando said keep working on the serve Andy….


jane Says:

congrats to andy for the win, but i do love popsicle! :)


Hippy Chick Says:

Jane who do you love more,thought Andy was always your second favorite?….


jane Says:

hippy you’re so funny! :)


Hippy Chick Says:

Jane i dont know if that was meant as a compliment or an insult,but why is it funny when im only asking a question?:)….


jane Says:

not an insult hippy, but just because i said i love vasek now you want to know who i “love more,” ha ha. i just found it funny is all.


Hippy Chick Says:

Jane fair enough,no harm or foul….


RZ Says:

Good wins for Andy and Stan. And nice to see Gilles Muller having a good post-injury run.


Wog Boy Says:

Second favorite player is an replaceable item, Rafa was my second favorite until WTF 2010. I don’t have one now, still looking for one, when ever I think I found one it turns out that’s not the one…maybe I am too demanding.


Brando Says:

‘Rafa was my second favorite until WTF 2010.’:

LOL. I bet a whole lot of Novak fans used to be on Rafa’s side in the pre 2011, primarily fed v rafa era at the top.

I find that usually to be the case and to be honest: and I don’t blame them or find it surprising.

In many ways the qualities that make Rafa who he is and Novak who he is overlap in many ways. I think those 2 plus Andy pretty much are made from the same ilk, represent the same qualities, virtues but show different shades of the same matter, in their own individual way.

In a Rafa aside world, I probably would have been a Novak fan. He was my 2nd favourite actually until 2009, when he seemed like he was going to be like my former fav pre Rafa:

Marat Safin.

I saw alot of similarities between Novak and Safin. And the performance Novak gave in Cincy 08′, 09′ v Rafa were just astounding to watch, thrilling like Safin in his heyday. But today’s Novak and Marat are just 2 completely different entities. It’s kinda crazy how different Novak was then and now.

Being a British Nadal fan makes it easy to have a 2nd fav, but for me actually it’s quite (unusually) easy and generally goes:

1. King Rafa
2. Braveheart Muzza

Then a 3rd place tie between:

- Del Potro: He’d be a easy 3 for me and probably even surpass Andy! Love everything about that guy, but you cannot root for a player who sadly ain’t on court! :-(

- Nishikori: Kei is the man for me. Everything about him, his game is just awesome and so easy to like. One day when Fedal, Novak are done at the top some player will replace them. Inevitable father time stuff. I hope that player would be Kei since he’s a amazing player and perfect heir to their throne.

Then from the 22 or under next generation age it’s not clear really. Have not seen enough of many but Borna Coric was impressive v Rafa at Basel last year for sure.

I cannot see myself liking/rooting for a next generation giant.

Athletic ability that Fedal, Andole showed has to be present for me, or that they have a brilliant, astounding shotmaking of either wing allied with a likable personality like Del Potro or Kei.

It will be interesting to see future fan groups on RX when present generation is done (or close to it)by the end of the decade.


Humble Rafa Says:

Cannot wait for the real tennis season to begin. I am in a very generous mood to hand out bagels and breadsticks.


Sidney Says:

@wogboy, Rafa also was my 2nd favorite (still is by the way). If Novak didn’t come onto the scene, Rafa would be my top fav.

It was amazing how Rafa got to balls that you’d think was impossible for anybody to get. I was rooting for him to get the Rafa slam at the 2011 AO.

Roger is my distant 3rd fav.

I appreciate Murray’s game, however I have never found myself rooting for him. I don’t know exactly why. But I like his chances when he plays Roger, not so much vs Novak or Rafa. He matches up real good with Roger for some reason.


jane Says:

^ do you think it’s because roger doesn’t do quite as well against counterpunchers sidney? i mean some of the people who’ve troubled him tend to play a longer game – rafa, andy, simon (well he has a few wins), and nole too. even robredo and now seppi have slam wins over roger. usually he seems to handle the more aggressive players and/or big servers better than defenders. (ferrer’s an obvious exception.) obviously guys like berdych and delpo and tsonga have some big wins over roger too, so i am not sure if can be reduced to that. but you left that “form some reason” dangling, so i’m curious too.


Tennis Fan Says:

Sickening display by the referee of the Pospisil Murray match today. Penalizing Pospisil of his first serve at the critical point in the match because he was supposedly over his time for serve. If you actually watched this match Murray went over the limit many, many, many time more than his opponent and yet was never penalized. Talk about protecting the first seed who was in obvious trouble throughout this match. Murray was seriously outplayed by Pospisil but made it through with the help of the ump… and didn’t go after the ump after the match like he should of. If Pospisil would get serious enough about his training to raise his fitness level to Raonic’s it would have been lights out for Muzza. Sad Sad Sad all the way around.


Tennis Fan Says:

… and that umpire is a disgrace to tennis IMO


Sidney Says:

@jane, you’re probably right but I don’t know either.

I think it was Rafa who said that when he is able to stay close with Roger, that thats when he (Rafa) more often than not wins the match. Or something to that effect.


Hippy Chick Says:

I was never a fan of Samprass,his big serving game left me feeling cold and i found his matches quite boring,i enjoyed watching Pat and Andre they were my favorites from that era,been a Brit i did root for him,and hankered after a Brit winnig Wimbledon,but it wasnt to be and he flattered to decieve.

When Federer beat Samprass at W i was overjoyed and became a fan,till Rafa came along and something just turned me onto him(shock,horror,i went over to the dark side),i dont know what it was,the rebel with an unconventional game,i dont know?

I have always rooted for our Brit guys and gals for my sins,but more out of hope rather than expectation,Andy when he made top 10 i had a feeling would win a GS,although im doubting we will see another Brit do the same for a very long time.

I do love Kei and hope he is bound for big things in the event of the inevitable decline of Fedalovic,i do love Delpo whom has the big game to trouble the very best,but im wondering if hes ever going to get back to that level where he won the USO in 2009?its been a long time now….


Sidney Says:

@HC, i like Sampras, but i agree regarding his matches being (amazingly) boring. I mostly tuned out when he played (how un-American!) Just wasn’t appealing to me. I rooted for him though when he was trying to beat Emerson’s record of 12 slams.

I think I know why I don’t root for Murray. He was so overhyped but couldn’t quite deliver (until USO 12). I think that hype around him was what turned me off. So I am blaming the media for it. He’s a nice guy and plays similar to my fave’s Novak & Rafa, just not at the same level of intensity and willpower.


calmdownplease Says:

`Sickening display by the referee of the Pospisil Murray match today..`

What a ridiculously biased and over the top post
Popsical did NOT `outplay` Murray
He tried to redline it as many of these kind of top 50 players try to and like many of them he couldn’t sustain it
He simply wasn’t fit enough to hang with Andy and so was taking too long between points.
That’s his problem, not Andy’s. The rules are there for the reason.
Why should Popsicle be exempted from them?


Hippy Chick Says:

Sidney thanks for the feedback,yeah Sampras with one s rather than two lol,well it was the same for me liked him but not his tennis,i loved watching Pat and Andre,both were great returners with alot of variety,Pat was a great volleyer.

Rafa and Andy are my favorites and i would love to see them meet in a GS final at some point,even though it seems most unlikely at this point,i like Novak and have alot of respect for him and his career achievements,and i do believe he will win double digit GS,but he is not my favorite,and i do admit to having annymosity towards him,as my two favorites would probably have more GS and titles otherwise,but winning and losing is all part of the sport,and its not Novaks fault,and me with the problem not him….


calmdownplease Says:

So let’s see if `no one beats Gilles Simon 13 times in a row` then….


Jeez Says:

1st Game
Simon breaks Murray @ Love


Emily Says:

It’s so interesting to see an open discussion about people’s faves w/o animosity, especially the older players. I always liked watched Sampras and respected him, but I lived in England during the Henman era and desperately wanted him to win Wimbledon. I supported him until the end, but I still have some scars, I’ll admit.
I loved Pat and Andre, and I always wished that Pat could have won Wimbledon. I feel so lucky that Andre went as long as he did since we saw how well he was still playing just before Fedal took over.
Stan and Delpo are my two faves, and as much as I loved their games, I really did not expect either of their grand slam wins. Maybe I had lowered my expectations after putting so much faith in Tim’s chances. I respect all of the big 4, but Nadal’s tenacity and amazing game probably puts him at the top. When he came out of almost nowhere to win the Davis Cup in 2004 and the French in 2005 (by beating the dominating Federer in the semis), it was something new and exciting. He remains great for the sport and I hope he has a good season.


calmdownplease Says:

`Jeez` is a timely & appropriate moniker for that abortion of a first game
He will BB at some point however


calmdownplease Says:

Andy is not playing well, lots of shanking
but its clearly a `French net`


Nusi Says:

“No one beat Simon 13 times in a row”
Gille stay true to his word so far


Peter Says:

come on Gille, don’t wake up from this dream


Emily Says:

Simon is dangerous since he’s playing the human backboard


Jeez Says:

Deja Vu!!


Jeez Says:

Trailing 0-3
1st serve won 0/4
2nd serve won 2/6!!


Jeez Says:

Trailing 0-4
1st serve won 0/4
2nd serve won 2/6!!


Jeez Says:

The Audacity : Commentators still feel Murray can pull this one!!


Emily Says:

They are English commentators and this tournament has had its fair share of three setters w/ the top seeds. Doesn’t sound like Murray’s playing well, but I’m just watching the scoreboard


sienna Says:

Murray fans have been suckered by the final Australië result.
Murray is far from slamwinning form.
Mrs 0 and 1 is how I call him.
Losing in a bad bad way against Simon.


calmdownplease Says:

Andy was never really in this one
He’s probably thinking about the food tasting coming up after this tourney for his wedding


calmdownplease Says:

Well no one DOES beat Gilles 13 times in a row after all!
Well done Monsieur!


calmdownplease Says:

terrible stats, esp, you guessed it!
The %&* Serve!


Emily Says:

Just saw video of Berdych falling down and Monfils going over the net to help him up. You have to love this guy’s attitude and class, along w/ his great tennis.


brando Says:

Andy Murray 2nd serve points won in the match? 27%.


jane Says:

in the AO final it was 34%. his second serve is definitely a liability against good returners, but in particular if andy’s first serve is not firing, too, which is what it sounds like was happening today? i didn’t see the match. in australia andy’s first serve was working very well. he was up over 60% most matches, and hitting a number of aces too. but for sure he and amelie should address the second serve.


RZ Says:

All the top players lose to Simon at some point. Until today, Murray was the only Big 4 member Simon hadn’t beaten, and had (and still has) the most losses against.

Murray typically hasn’t done well during this stretch of the season. Most years he does abysmally at Indian Wells. I think his Miami results will be more telling for how his season will go.


jane Says:

yeah, emily i saw that too; very sweet of gael.


jane Says:

rz, i believe simon had had one win over murray before today. but it was back in 2007.


RZ Says:

@Jane – you are right. I thought the ATP site had updated their stats right away but it turns out that Simon had won the very first match he played against Murray, and then lost the next 12.

In any case, I put Simon in the same category as Ivo Karlovic (even though they have very different games) – they are good for pulling an upset over a top player every now and then, but it doesn’t mean much in the grand scheme of things.


jane Says:

i totally agree RZ. it’s not a predictor of future fortunes at all.


Tennis Fan Says:

Justice for Murray after the Posicle match in which he was clearly outplayed …


Hippy Chick Says:

Emily @February 13th 8.43am,completely agree about Pat,i was gutted he never won Wimbledon,as his game did seem quite well suited to grass too,been a Brit i always rooted for Tim to win the title,more out of hope rather than expectation,his best chance was against Goran in that semi,two sets up and then he totally capitulated,he was never the same player after that,as i say flattered to decieve….


Hippy Chick Says:

Funny that the top players are losing to players that they usually own,Federer with Seppi,Nadal with Berdych,Murray with Simon hmm….


Hippy Chick Says:

Funny how posters make such bold statements February 13th 9.58am,and try and pass their opinions off as bona fide facts,seems the trend on this forum,you would think going by past experiences that they might have learned their lessons,anyway its one tournament and one match,and doesnt automatically mean Murrays chances for the rest of the season are all of a sudden detrimental,jeez a bit of perspective wouldnt go a miss,we are only in February for goodness sake….


Hippy Chick Says:

^Meant to add,it sounds like someone is still bitter that Cilic is still injured and out of action, the USO was five months ago now,we have played another GS since then,time to move on,tennis is about the here and the now^….


sienna Says:

Funny how some posters claim to steady themself in the amount of comments they throw up on this site and still keep posting like they want to prove a point. How many posts is allowed before someone is banned for boredom?


Hippy Chick Says:

Pot,kettle,black….


calmdownplease Says:

`Justice for Murray after the Posicle match in which he was clearly outplayed..`

Yes outplayed when he won the first set 6-3
haha
Oh but had all the wheezing and delaying tactics from Popsicle been forgiven that first serve he lost wouldn’t have cost him the whole shebang!
tsk Life is SO unfair, isn’t it?
sniffles
lol
Clearly you’re not from Canada and not biassed


calmdownplease Says:

biased oopps :)


calmdownplease Says:

@HC

Don’t worry about Sienna Hippy
The old wind bag is obsessed with Roger getting his 18th so is praying that Andy will have another bad year and that somehow, after this potential iceberg and a few others (like a Nadal blow out) are out of the way that Fed is going to edge it at some point probably Wimnbledon.
Phew that’s going to be a constellation of stars that will have to align, makes one dizzy and tired even to think about it really.
Well, Ya never know to be fair, But I personally just don’t see it this time.

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