The X Blog - Dysfunctional Tennis Blogging at its Finest

Roger Federer Is Undecided On Playing Madrid Or Rome

Posted by Tom Gainey on April 18th, 2016 @ 10:24 am

Just because Roger Federer played Monte Carlo doesn’t mean we’ll be seeing the Swiss at more French Open warm-up events this spring.

Federer, who didn’t have any pre-French clay events on his original schedule, told the press after losing Friday in Monte Carlo that he doesn’t have a set schedule before Paris.

“I definitely won’t play the next couple of weeks,” Federer said Friday. “And Madrid I’ll decide probably like 10 …

Andy Murray Suspicious Of Players Who Don’t Get Tired, Boris Becker Hits Back On Doping Claims

Posted by Tom Gainey on April 18th, 2016 @ 9:53 am

Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic’s coach, Boris Becker, are at odds over allegations the Scot made. Murray spoke to the Daily Mail last week and urged authorities to step-up its war on doping.

“I have played against players and thought, ‘They won’t go away’ or ‘They don’t seem to be getting tired’,” Murray told the paper. “Have I ever been suspicious of someone? Yeah. You hear things.

“It’s harder to tell …

Fed Cup Playoffs: Former Powerhouse Russia Out of World Group I, as is 4-time Champ Italy

Posted by Staff on April 17th, 2016 @ 5:59 pm

The halcyon days of Russian Fed Cup are no more. With no players in the Top 30 representing, the Russians are pounded into zonal play by former world No. 1 Victoria Azarenka, who won her first two singles matches before Belarus’ No. 100-ranked Aliaksandra Sasnovich beat Russia’s Margarita Gasparyan to put Belarus into World Group I for 2017. It is the first time in Belarus Fed Cup …

France v Czech in Fed Cup Final, Capsules; Falconi Wins Bogota

Posted by Staff on April 17th, 2016 @ 5:55 pm

Fed Cup World Group Semifinals

The Dutch couldn’t hold a lead as Kiki Bertens twice put them out ahead, but got no support as France clinches in the deciding doubles. Bertens beat France’s Caroline Garcia and Kristina Mladenovic, but the Netherlands couldn’t get singles wins out of either Richel Hogenkamp or Arantxa Rus.

In the deciding doubles Garcia/Mladenovic bore down to defeat Bertens/Hogenkamp 4-6, 6-3, 6-3.

“It’s difficult …

Rafael Nadal Back on Top of Clay Heap with Monte Carlo Title Over Gael Monfils

Posted by Staff on April 17th, 2016 @ 2:05 pm

Rafael Nadal survived a brutal tournament late goings, defeating former French Open champ Stan Wawrinka in the quarters, No. 2 seed Andy Murray from a set down in the semis, and No. 5 seed Gael Monfils 7-5, 5-7, 6-0 to win a ninth Monte Carlo title on Sunday.

Nadal seemed in control until 5-5 in the second set when he dropped serve, allowing Monfils to claim the second set, but the …

Radwanska Leads 6 of Top 10 Women at Stuttgart; Istanbul; WTA Previews

Posted by Staff on April 17th, 2016 @ 11:57 am

Stuttgart, Germany; Surface: clay

Seeds: Agnieszka Radwanska, Angelique Kerber, Garbine Muguruza, Simona Halep, Petra Kvitova, Roberta Vinci, Carla Suarez Navarro, Lucie Safarova

Floaters: Andrea Petkovic, Sara Errani, Ana Ivanovic, Karolina Pliskova, Alize Cornet, Ekaterina Makarova, Sabine Lisicki, Annika Beck

Notes: Strong field featuring six of the Top 10…The Top 4 seeds receive opening-round byes…Lots of floaters in the draw and tough opening-round match-ups including (1) Radwanska vs. Petkovic, (8) Safarova …

Rafael Nadal Comes Back To Beat Andy Murray, Meets Gael Monfils In Monte Carlo Final; Who’s The Pick?

Posted by Sean Randall on April 16th, 2016 @ 7:19 pm

Turns out this week in Monte Carlo wasn’t about Roger Federer’s comeback, but instead about Rafael Nadal’s! Nadal came into the European clay season with just one single solitary Top 40 win on what had been a dismal season. But after today’s win over Andy Murray in the semifinals, that’s three straight Top 15 victories. Rafa is back! Or is he?

Today, Nadal was simply overwhelmed by the big-hitting, aggressive-minded Murray …

Nishikori, Not Nadal, the New King of Clay in Barcelona?; Bucharest; ATP Previews

Posted by Staff on April 16th, 2016 @ 11:30 am

Barcelona, Spain; Surface: clay

Seeds: Rafael Nadal, Kei Nishikori, David Ferrer, Richard Gasquet, Roberto Bautista Agut, Benoit Paire, Feliciano Lopez, Viktor Troicki, Pablo Cuevas, Philipp Kohlschreiber, Alexandr Dolgopolov, Fabio Fognini, Jeremy Chardy, Joao Sousa, Thomaz Bellucci, Andrey Kuznetsov

Floaters: Ernests Gulbis, Nicolas Almagro, Alexander Zverev

Notes: Nadal leads the four Top 10 players in his homecountry event that boasts a 64 draw including opening-round byes to all 16 seeds…The tournament courted …

Resurgent Rafael Nadal Takes On Rival Andy Murray In Monte Carlo SFs Saturday

Posted by Staff on April 15th, 2016 @ 6:35 pm

Enjoying his best week of what has been a tough season, Rafael Nadal seeks a third straight win over a Top 15 player Saturday when he meets rival Andy Murray for a spot in the Monte Carlo finals.

“He played a great match today,” said Nadal of Murray’s win over Milos Raonic. “We’ll see. I need to be ready to play the way I am playing the past two matches. If …

Tsonga Sends Off Federer; Nadal Returns To Form, Dominates Wawrinka In Monte Carlo

Posted by Staff on April 15th, 2016 @ 6:06 pm

Roger Federer’s comeback this week ended at the hands to Jo-Wilfried Tsonga who sent off the Swiss 3-6, 6-2, 7-5 to reach the semifinals at the Monte Carlo Open.

Federer was returning off knee surgery in February. He had won both matches this week in straight sets before letting things slip after the first set.

“Definitely had some twists and turns. I’m not sure how come. Maybe we were both a bit …

Rafael Nadal v Stan Wawrinka, Roger Federer v Jo-Wilfried Tsonga In Friday Monte Carlo QF Play

Posted by Staff on April 14th, 2016 @ 8:54 pm

The final eight are set at the first Masters clay event of the season. With Novak Djokovic out in a shock upset, the field is wide open with two former champions Rafael Nadal and Stan Wawrinka squaring off.

Nadal has won 14 of 17 against Wawrinka (including their first 12) but the Swiss has won three of their last five. On clay, Nadal is ahead 5-1.

“Stan, he’s always very dangerous opponent …

Rafael Nadal Gets Revenge On Dominic Thiem In Monte Carlo; Roger Federer Continues Sharp Return

Posted by Staff on April 14th, 2016 @ 8:35 pm

Rafael Nadal got revenge on youngster Dominic Thiem Thursday in Monte Carlo for a loss the youngster handed him in Buenos Aires in February. Nadal, the 8-time Monte Carlo champion, saved 15 of 16 break chances against the Austrian to pull out a tough 7-5, 6-3 win.

“I think I played a good match,” said Nadal. “In terms of level of tennis, was great I think. In terms of fighting …

Aljaz Bedene Says Rafael Nadal’s Forehand Is Now A Weakness!

Posted by Tom Gainey on April 14th, 2016 @ 10:04 am

Aljaz Bedene had an interesting critique of Rafael Nadal. After losing to the Spaniard yesterday in Monte Carlo, the Brit commented that he thinks Nadal’s forehand isn’t what it once was.

“A few years ago when he was ripping his forehand, that was his best shot,” Bedene said. “But now when you press his forehand, that’s his weaker side.

“You can see he’s not feeling great on the forehand side, which is …

Is Rafael Nadal Dealing With A Wrist Issue?

Posted by Tom Gainey on April 14th, 2016 @ 9:53 am

Following an opening round 63, 63 win over Aljaz Bedene, Rafael Nadal explained why he was spotted earlier with tape on his left wrist.

Footage of Nadal after Miami with his left wrist heavily bandaged:

And the former No. 1 admitted he’s had an issue with the wrist since Australia. But good news is he doesn’t think it’s a problem.

Q. There was pictures of you with …

Novak Djokovic Rode The Bicycle Home After Losing In Monte Carlo Tuesday

Posted by Tom Gainey on April 14th, 2016 @ 9:40 am

Would you believe after suffering a shock loss to Jiri Vesely Tuesday in Monte Carlo, Novak Djokovic rode a bicycle back home?

On his bike. Pedaling home.

— TroubleFault (@troublefault) April 13, 2016

No helmet for the Monte Carlo resident?

The loss was just Djokovic’s second of the season, and first at a Masters event since last summer. Djokovic credited the 22-year-old but …