January 6th, 2013
Notes: Weak field with no Top 10 and only two Top 20 participants…wildcards went to Aussies James Duckworth, Matthew Ebden and John Millman…Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Richard Gasquet pulled from the event…Aussie intrigued with Tomic opening against countryman Marinko Matosevic…Top-seeded Isner a question mark after inuring his knee at the Hopman Cup…No. 2 Simon after a bye likely looking at a tough match-up against veteran and 2012 winner Jarkko Nieminen…Returning champions in the field are Nieminen (2012) and Simon (2011).
June 13th, 2012
“Grass is for the cows.”
– Ivan Lendl on skipping Wimbledon in 1982 to instead take a vacation.
December 21st, 2011
Jelena Jankovic attributed her plummet after reaching No. 1 to over-training going into the next season. Here’s Jankovic talking to Sky Sports on her off-season training for 2012: “I’m training more than I ever have…7 hours a day…I start at 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. everyday but Sunday…day off…tennis is five hours and fitness is two hours a day…I’m getting in great shape!” Good luck with that.
August 28th, 2011
“It was a tough one,” Lisicki said. “I really had to hang in there in the beginning. Aravane’s a tough player. You can’t have any letdowns or else she’ll play very well — she can really go for her shots. I had to make sure I went for mine today.”
July 24th, 2011
An exhausted Isner, apparently also suffering abdominal cramps, served in the tiebreak at 6-4 before Fish won four straight points to force the third set. In the third the withering Isner, broken early on serve and out of gas, had no chance.
July 24th, 2011
American Andy Roddick still in seclusion during Week #2 of the US Open Series, not making an appearance since the U.S. Davis Cup debacle vs. Spain…
July 17th, 2011
Notes: Interesting openers include (1) Fish vs. the Mahut-Richard Bernakis winner after a bye, (8) Devvarman vs. Ryan Sweeting, Blake vs. Gulbis in a battle of strugglers, (7) Bogomolov vs. Muller, (WC) Haas vs. (WC) Robby Ginepri, and (WC) Donald Young vs. “Iron” Mike Russell (winner to face (2) Anderson); Fish beat Isner in last year’s final.
May 15th, 2011
Notes: Why “Qualifier” and Victor Hanescu as floaters? Because one of those will likely send the struggling No. 4 seed Roddick out of the tournament in his first match; interesting opening-round match-ups include (6) Baghdatis vs. (WC) Benneteau, and (8) Fognini vs. (WC) Gulbis; Roddick is making his debut in Nice, looking for some last-minute clay preparation after going winless this dirt season, and extending his losing record to four straight matches; the Top 4 seeds in Nice this year are all making their tournament debuts; Richard Gasquet won the title last year.
May 1st, 2011
The title lifted Djokovic’s win-loss record on the year to 27-0, the best season start by a player since Ivan Lendl began the 1986 year 29-0.
April 5th, 2011
Americans went 1-for-3 in the final round of qualifying play on Monday as American Donald Young lost to Ivo Karlovic in straights, Americna Rajeev Ram lost to Chile’s Paul Capdeville in three, American Alex Bogomolov Jr. lost to Croat Franco Skugor in three, and American Tim Smyczek gained the main draw after defeating Canadian Frank Dancevic in three sets.
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March 6th, 2011
Andy “The Closer” Roddick clinches for the U.S. in the first match on Sunday, beating Paul Capdeville in four sets. Chile got its only live point on Day One when Capdeville turned his match against John Isner into a fitness contest, beating Big John from two sets down. Roddick opened with a win over Nicolas Massu on Day One, and the Bryan brothers won the Saturday doubles point for the U.S., which will next host Spain.
February 27th, 2011
Notes: Troubled former No. 1 Dinara Safina floats seedlessly in the draw, starting against China’s Xinyun Han, then a possible meeting with (5) Safarova; (8) Jovanovski a tough start against Tanasugarn, and (1) Schiavone vs. Dokic; last year Kleybanova beat the now-retired Elena Dementieva to win her first WTA title in Kuala Lumpur.
February 19th, 2011
After last week winning his first ATP title at San Jose, this afternoon Raonic beat Mardy Fish 6-4, 4-6, 6-3 to advance to the Memphis final. Only breaking on the scene last month at the Australian Open by reaching the round of 16, Raonic seemingly has no weaknesses. His serve is a monster. He batters forehand and two-handed backhand winners from the back court, and has variety with a slice backhand that is at his height is like playing ping pong. He is aggressive and doesn’t hesitant to push in and end the point at the net. His return of serve is big. His volley is solid. He hammered 23 aces on Fish. This kid is a nightmare for anyone he faces. Ask Top 10er Fernando “Hot Sauce” Verdasco, who lost to Raonic in the San Jose finals, then lost to him again a couple days later in the first round at Memphis.
January 8th, 2011
Notes: (8) Lu opens against Simon, and (6) Lopez vs. (WC) Del Potro; other wildcards to Brit James Ward and Aussie Matthew Ebden; Baghdatis beat Gasquet in last year’s final; Del Potro makes his first tournament appearance since October and only his third in the last 11 months after a right wrist injury that required surgery; American Donald Young lost in the qualifying as did Aussie Carsten Ball; seeds Querrey, Gulbis and Lopez have losing career records in Sydney; the Bryan brothers, winners in 2009, are the top seeds in the doubles; Baghdatis, the only returning champ in the field, is looking to become the first back-to-back winner since James Blake (2007-06); Pete Sampras and Lleyton Hewitt (twice) won back-to-back titles, but no one has one three in a row in Sydney in the Open Era.
November 20th, 2010
At Wimbledon this year the 2010 Sportsman Nadal was warned by the chair umpire not to receive coaching from or talk to his uncle in the crowd. Yet later in the same match Nadal was slapped with a code violation for talking to his uncle, who was in the player’s box.