The X Blog - Dysfunctional Tennis Blogging at its Finest

Right Hand Injury Forces No. 1 Naomi Osaka Out Of Rome

Posted by Staff on May 17th, 2019 @ 10:18 am

The carnage from a back-logged Thursday schedule continued today in Rome. After injuries/retirements to Grand Slam champions Simona Halep, Petra Kvitova and Garbine Muguruza, today Naomi Osaka pulled out because of a right hand issue.

The Japanese, who won two matches yesterday, was scheduled to face Madrid champion Kiki Bertens. The Dutchwoman now gets the walkover into the semifinals.

“I woke up this morning and couldn’t really move my thumb,” Osaka said. …

Roger Federer Withdraws From Rome Due To Right Leg Injury

Posted by Staff on May 17th, 2019 @ 10:12 am

After a busy Thursday, Roger Federer withdrew from the Rome Masters today ahead of his quarterfinal clash with Stefanos Tsitsipas.

Playing just his second clay event, the 37-year-old was forced to take the court twice yesterday, and saved two match points in a thrilling win over Borna Coric. During the match, Federer complained of the wet lines and admitted afterward that he felt something in his leg.

“The lines are wet,” Federer …

Osaka Wins 2 In Rome, Secures French Top Seed; Konta Upsets Stephens, Venus; Halep, Kvitova Ailing

Posted by Staff on May 16th, 2019 @ 10:17 pm

On a very busy double-up day in Rome, world No. 1 Naomi Osaka locked up the top seed at the French and moved in to the quarterfinals after identical 6-3, 6-3 wins over Dominika Cibulkova and Mihaela Buzarnescu.

It’s her first clay quarterfinal and puts the 21-year-old up against Madrid champ Kiki Bertens. The Dutchwoman ran her win streak to eight straight after Thursday wins over Amanda Anisimova and Carla Suarez …

Federer Saves 2 MPs v Coric In Rome, Gets Tsitsipas Fri.; Nadal, Djokovic Roll In 2 Wins

Posted by Staff on May 16th, 2019 @ 9:50 pm

For the second straight week Roger Federer went right to the edge of elimination, saving 2 match points to Borna Coric 2-6, 6-4, 7-6(7).

Because of the Wednesday washout, nearly all of the top players were forced to win two matches today to make the quarterfinal.

Federer earlier cruised past Joao Sousa 6-4, 6-3 and was far from his best against the Croat. Coric broke the Swiss twice in the first, …

Nick Kyrgios Tosses Chair, Walks Off Court, Fined Euro 20,000 [Video]

Posted by Tom Gainey on May 16th, 2019 @ 4:21 pm

Bad boy Nick Kyrgios is again back in the news for all the wrong reasons. Today in Rome, the Australian had dropped dropped serve to make it 1-all in third and then all hell broke loose. He began arguing with someone in the stands, then smashed his racquet and tossed a chair for which he received a game penalty making it 2-1 Ruud.

Disgusted, he packed up his belongings and left …

Rain Washes Out Wed. Schedule In Rome Forcing Big 3 To Double-up Thurs.

Posted by Staff on May 15th, 2019 @ 8:35 pm

For the first time in tournament history, a fully day of play was washed out in Rome today. Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Noami Osaka and my other were scheduled to play their first matches at the Italian Open, now they will be forced to not only play tomorrow, but also play their second match as well.

With a massive schedule today that included the return of Federer, tournament organizers …

Roger Federer Hints Next Year Could Be Complicated For The Big 3

Posted by Tom Gainey on May 15th, 2019 @ 10:33 am

Did Roger Federer just say this year could be it for the Big 3’s domination? Speaking yesterday in Rome, Federer seemed to say that the young guys will have this to gain more experience, then next year they will make their move.

“The young guys are pushing through nicely the last year,” Federer said. “You look at the move that Tsitsipas has done, or Medvedev or Khachanov, Felix, Denis, so forth. …

Among The Reasons Roger Federer Chose To Play Rome Was The Weather!

Posted by Tom Gainey on May 15th, 2019 @ 10:27 am

As the rain pounds down in Rome, Roger Federer said yesterday that one of the reasons he added Rome to his schedule was the weather! Whoops!

Federer, who’s had a history of back issues in the cold, said that staying and practicing in Switzerland would have been tough due to the bad weather back home.

“I felt like playing somewhat maybe more sea level conditions would be good for me,” Federer …

No Serena-Venus In Rome; Svitlova Blows 5-2 Lead v Azarenka

Posted by Staff on May 14th, 2019 @ 10:52 pm

From 5-2 up in the third set against Victoria Azarenka, Elina Svitolina somehow couldn’t must another game, missing two match points and dropping five straight games to lose 4-6, 6-1, 7-5 in rainy Rome second round encounter.

Svitolina was the 2-time defending champion who had won her last 10 matches in Rome, but now had lost her last four matches on the tour since beating Marketa Vondrousova at Indian Wells. Though …

Former Champ Zverev Ousted In Rome; Big 3 – Federer, Nadal, Djokovic – On Big Wednesday

Posted by Staff on May 14th, 2019 @ 7:03 pm

Things are continued to spiral downward for Alexander Zverev. The German who won Rome in 2017 and made the finals a year ago, was bounced in his first match by home favorite Matteo Berrettini in straight sets 7-5, 7-5.

The 23-year-old Berrettini was no slouch after winning Budapest and Munich back-to-back in the last month. This was his first Top 10 win and it thrilled his Italian crowd.

Zverev will drop out …

Ahead Of Clash With Venus, Serena Williams Withdraws From Rome

Posted by Tom Gainey on May 14th, 2019 @ 12:28 pm

Just 24 hours before a much-anticipated showdown with sister Venus, Serena Williams has withdrawn from the Italian Open in Rome due to continued left knee issues.

“I must withdraw from the Italian Open due to pain in my left knee,” Serena said. “I will miss the fans and competition at one of my favorite tournaments.

“I’ll be concentrating on rehab and look forward to seeing you all at the French Open and …

Dominic Thiem On New Coach Nicolas Massu: He’s Made My Game More Unpredictable

Posted by Tom Gainey on May 14th, 2019 @ 12:11 pm

Under new coach Nicolas Massu, Dominic Thiem has caught fire taking his first Masters title at Indian Wells over Roger Federer, then last month beating Rafael Nadal again on the clay. And last week he beat Federer again in Madrid.

So what’s Massu brought to the table for the Austrian?

“I think that my game got more unpredictable,” Thiem said of the Chilean’s influence. “That’s one big part. I …

Rafael Nadal: I Haven’t Won A Title But I Am Feeling Good

Posted by Tom Gainey on May 14th, 2019 @ 11:57 am

Despite failing to win a title entering Rome for the first time since forever, Rafael Nadal is worried about where his game is at, that he made clear yesterday speaking in front of the media in Italy.

“I feel good,” Nadal said. “Is true that I didn’t win a title, but is true that my feeling is, for example, maybe in 2015 I won Buenos Aires, I think, but the feeling …

Fognini, Coric, Shapovalov Rome Winners; Cilic, Wawrinka Tues

Posted by Staff on May 13th, 2019 @ 8:06 pm

The young Canadians had a mixed day in Rome on Monday as Denis Shapovalov scored a terrific win beating Pablo Carreno Busta 6-3, 7-6(5); however, his friend and countryman Felix Auger-Aliassime fell to Borna 6-7(4), 6-3, 6-4.

In the evening Fabio Fognini thrilled the home crowd crushing former Top 5 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 6-3, 6-4.

““To play first round against Jo – really tough match, because of course he was injured. He …

Venus Needs 9 MPs To Beat Mertens In Rome, Serena Next; Azarenka v Svitolina Tues

Posted by Staff on May 13th, 2019 @ 7:47 pm

In one of her craziest matches of her long career, Venus Williams needed a total of nine match points to finally beat a pesky Elise Mertens 7-5, 3-6, 7-6(4) to reach the Rome second round where she will face sister Serena on Wednesday.

Seemingly in control, the 38-year-old Venus led in the third 5-1 then serving for it at 5-2 she blew six match points, a few off double faults. Mertens …