Monfils Tops Raonic To Reach Stockholm Final; Serbians Battle In Moscow; WTA Champs Field Set
by Sean Randall | October 22nd, 2011, 6:19 pm

Gael Monfils founds himself against the wall today to promising youngester Milos Raonic. The Canadian Raonic led Monfils a set and serving 4-3 before Monfils mounted his comeback to win 6-7(6), 6-4, 6-3 to reach the Stockholm final where he will face Jarkko Nieminen.

“I had some opportunities in the first set and I didn’t make them. Maybe I got a bit nervous at the end of the tie-break,” said Monfils who keeps his distant London hopes alive. “But I kept going, which was good. I felt he was a bit tired and my game plan worked.”

Credit to Raonic who just missed three months but had a great event beating Grigor Dimitrov and then having enough game to lead Monfils. It’s a great sign for the kid that he’s winning matches again.

The lefty Nieminen also was a three set winner turning away former champion James Blake 7-6(5), 5-7, 6-2.

It was also a good week for Blake who upset Juan Martin Del Potro and earned a spot in the semifinals when David Nalbandian withdrew – contrast to a not so good week for Argentina!

In Moscow, we are guaranteed another title for Serbia this season. The final features Viktor Troicki against Janko Tipsarevic in the first ever all-Serbian final on the ATP tour.

“Janko is the player I know the best on the circuit and is playing his best tennis this year. Mentally it won’t be easy to play him,” said Troicki.

Added Janko, “Viktor is one of my closest friends outside of tennis, we know each other’s game so well.”

Troicki beat Chardy, Tipsarevic knocked out Russian Davydenko. Like Monfils, Janko still harbors some outside chances at London as well.

And the field is set for 2011 WTA Championship in Istanbul, Turkey. Caroline Wozniacki, Maria Sharapova, Petra Kvitova, Victoria Azarenka, Li Na, Vera Zvonareva, Sam Stosur and Agnieska Radwanska will battle for the $5 million in prize money starting on Tuesday. Who’ll win is anyone’s guess!

With the WTA ending up a full month or so before the ATP tour, I’m sure we’ll be hearing more talk from the men about the season being too long. If the women can end there circuit the last week in October, why can’t the men?

CENTRE COURT start 12:45 pm
[1] R Bopanna (IND) / A Qureshi (PAK) vs [4] M Melo (BRA) / B Soares (BRA)

Not Before 3:00 PM
[1] G Monfils (FRA) vs J Nieminen (FIN)

CENTRE COURT start 1:00 pm
[8] D Cibulkova (SVK) vs K Kanepi (EST) – WTA

Not Before 3:00 PM
[1] J Tipsarevic (SRB) vs [2] V Troicki (SRB) – ATP
[1] F Cermak (CZE) / F Polasek (SVK) vs C Berlocq (ARG) / D Marrero (ESP) – ATP

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23 Comments for Monfils Tops Raonic To Reach Stockholm Final; Serbians Battle In Moscow; WTA Champs Field Set

Kimmi Says:

ah! missed the match, a very close one but congrats to cibulkova. apparently it is her first title, kind of surprising. She seem to be a very good player, you would think she has won a few by now.
First time she is beating kanepi too, must be a happy day for her.

Next, let see who is a really serbian number 2.

Kimmi Says:

* real serbian number 2*

Kimmi Says:

troicki started slow, got broken in his first service game. now he is playing much better, manage to break right back. we have a match.

dari Says:

Wow, I didn’t know that this was Dominica’s first title.
We will see if janko can get title no.2 w/in a few weeks.
I must say I miss seeing that guy Roger play :(

Kimmi Says:

hi dari, yeah me too. two weeks more rest for roger till basel.

tipsa breaks again, serving for the set now.

Kimmi Says:

tipsa with the first set.

Kimmi Says:

troicki making too many errors now. saved two break points in the first game of second set. if tipsa breaks here it will be over i think.

double faults give tipsa another break chance

Kimmi Says:

Troicki holds. a very long game that one..

Kimmi Says:

tough for troicki to save all these break points, he saved 6 in the second. but one too many, tipsa breaks. I think this is it..

grendel Says:

” She seem to be a very good player” – she’s a wonderful player, Kimmi, but is handicapped by a mediocre serve.

Kimmi Says:

tipsa breaks again. no chance for troicki now. next he serves for the match

Kimmi Says:

tipsa wins. In august he breaks into top 20 for the first time. three weeks ago wins his first title in kuala lumpur and now he wins his second title in moscow.

he is also one of the guys who has a chance to qualify for london but still a very long shot.

Kimmi Says:

grendel – i think for cilbukova it must be more than just a serve. she hasnt been mentally strong in a lot of matches she had a chance to win, she breaks down a lot imo. Good to see her winning one at last.

Kimmi Says:

monfils vs nieminen looking interesting. since i started watching in the second set, there have been 3 breaks.

Kimmi Says:

nieminen takes the second set. one set all. monfils needs to play aggressive now or nieminen will take it. he is been the aggressor in the second.

Kimmi Says:

La monf breaks :)

grendel Says:

“i think for cilbukova it must be more than just a serve. she hasnt been mentally strong in a lot of matches she had a chance to win, she breaks down a lot imo” You may well be right, Kimmi.

There is another possibility. Cibulkova takes huge risks – I don’t know anything about her, but I would imagine this all pervading risk taking is a calculated strategy, designed to offset her small stature from which in particular derives the weak serve. It is in the nature of risk that it doesn’t always come off, especially when it is so bound up in the player’s game. Just how many of those insane shots can a player pull off in a match? Opt for more caution, on the other hand then, given the weak serve, the player may be handing over the iniative to her opponent.

Kimmi Says:

la monf with three match point, one saved. and another. and another..duece.

error from nieminen..match point no. 4 to monfils and he wins.

Congrats la monf. title no. 4

jane Says:

Congrats to la Monf and Tipsy!

Kimmi Says:

great matches today. congrats to all winners. azarenka wins in luxembourg too.

grendel Says:

all quiet on the western front. re-read my post and didn’t like it. too many elephants. so am taking the liberty of rephrasing it. might as well. nothing else doing.

re Cibulkova: Serve: crap

but: can’t be helped

so: take a chance and smash the ball

and: sometimes works.

I think that conveys more or less what I wanted to say. Can be read with just the one sip of brandy, too.

Kimmi Says:

there was an earth quake in turkey and WTA year end championships starts this week. I wonder if the tournament will be effected…

Kimberly Says:

Hope not. I was really looking forward to it. Have been watching the world series. Although originally I could care less I find myself pulling for the cardinals. I think I like the bird on their uniform and for some reason pujols reminds me of rafa

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