Rafa Heads Hamburg, Isner in Atlanta; ATP/WTA Previews
by Staff | July 25th, 2015, 11:47 pm

Hamburg, Germany; Surface: red clay

Seeds: Rafael Nadal, Tommy Robredo, Roberto Bautista Agut, Andreas Seppi, Pablo Cuevas, Juan Monaco, Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, Fabio Fognini
Floaters: Fernando “Hot Sauce” Verdasco, Borna Coric, Nicolas Almagro

Notes: Time for the tournament sponsored by an online betting site as the tour fights rampant match-fixing…Loaded dirt field…Rafa makes his first appearance since being upset at Wimbledon…Tough starts for (1) Rafa vs. Hot Sauce, and (3) Bautista Agut vs. Coric…Wildcards went to Germans Florian Mayer and Alexander Zverev, and Spaniards Jaume Munar and Nadal…Withdrawing from the event were David Ferrer and former champ Gilles Simon…Wildcards Nadal and Munar are playing doubles together…Leo Mayer upset David Ferrer in last year’s final…Former champs in the field are Fognini (2013), Monaco (2012), Nadal (2008), and Robredo (2006).

Atlanta, Ga., USA; Surface: hard

Seeds: John Isner, Vasek Pospisil, Jack Sock, Adrian Mannarino, Marcos Baghdatis, Steve Johnson, Gilles Muller, Benjamin Becker

Floaters: Radek Stepanek, Mardy Fish

Notes: Tough start for (1) Isner after a bye versus the mercurial net-rushing lady-killing Radek “The Worm” Stepanek…Fish on his goodbye tour starts against last year’s finalist Dudi Sela…Wildcards went to Americans Christopher Eubanks of Georgia Tech, the struggling Ryan Harrison and Frances Tiafoe…The Top 4 seeds receive opening-round byes…Pulling from the tournament were Kevin Anderson, Chung Hyeon, and Janko Tipsarevic…Wimbledon juniors champ Reilly Opelka lost in the first round of qualifying…Isner beat Sela in last year’s final…Former champs in the field are Isner (2014-13) and Fish (2011-10).

Gstaad, Switzerland; Surface: red clay

Seeds: David Goffin, Feliciano Lopez, Dominic Thiem, Pablo Andujar, Thomaz Bellucci, Joao Sousa, Pablo Carreno Busta, Santiago Giraldo

Floaters: none

Notes: Guess they couldn’t afford Roger, and Stan pulled from the event, so a pretty thin field with a title up for grabs…Wildcards went to Swiss Marco Chiudinelli and Henri Laaksonen, and Russian Andrey Rublev…Andujar beat Juan Monaco (who is in Hamburg this week) in last year’s final…Former champs in the field are Andujar (2014), Youzhny (2013), Bellucci (2012,’09), and Granollers (2011).

Florianapolis, Brazil; Surface: red clay

Seeds: Tatjana Maria, Ajla Tomljanovic, Annika Beck, Teliana Pereira, Bethanie Mattek-Sands, Louisa Chirico, Laura Siegemund, Paula Kania

Floaters: none

Notes: No seeds in the Top 50! Should this be a tour-level event?…Wildcards were awarded to Brazilians Carolina Alves, Maria Fernanda Alves and Luisa Stefani…No former champs are in the field.

Baku, Azerbaijan; Surface: hard

No draw available as of Saturday

Projected Seeds: Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, Karin Knapp, Dominika Cibulkova, Kurumi Nara, Bojana Jovanovski, Lesia Tsurenko, Vitalia Diatchenko, Francesca Schiavone

Projected Notes: No seeds in Top 40…Highlights of the nine players pulling so far are Klara Koukalova, Monica Niculescu, Roberta Vinci and Yanina Wickmayer…In last year’s final the Ukraine’s Elina Svitolina won her second consecutive title, beating Serbian 2012 champ Bojana Jovanovski.


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10 Comments for Rafa Heads Hamburg, Isner in Atlanta; ATP/WTA Previews

Michael Says:

It is good that Rafa has moved to Clay. He needs to rediscover his confidence. Clay is his best surface and a tournament win can be a huge tonic at this point in time !!

Gypsy Gal Says:

^Michael It surely makes a change to see none fans that have his best interests,rather than pushing him off to retirement,its Alison BTW,this is my new monikor^….

MMT Says:

I’m not so sure moving to clay is a good thing for Rafa – ultimately Rafa’s biggest problem this year has been his inability to consistently hit deep. He moved to a different racquet that was supposed to help him do just that, but then just before the Roland Garros he returned to his old stick, and promptly started hitting even shorter in the court than he normally does. Clay will only allow him to continue to do that, so I’m not sure this will help him with the rest of the year.

jane Says:

that’s true MMT, and his court positioning has only added to that problem. he’s often way back behind the baseline, and then if he’s leaving balls short due to his racquet as well … it kind of sets up a dustin brown-like situation. i really felt like rafa helped brown look really good at wimbledon because brown was able to charge forward repeatedly with rafa so far back.

jane Says:

congrats to thiem on winning at umag! that’s some 80s hairdo he’s sporting!

nole turned up to watch the final; i guess he’s missing tennis. good sign methinks. ;-)

Wog Boy Says:

Yes jane, and Croatian President couldn’t resist to have a photo with Nole and to proudly post it later on:)


Margot Says:


Check out the worst hat and the worst trophy EVER here.
But well done Atomic putting the disagreement with Aussie officials right behind him.
I know he gets a lot of “hate” on here, but I have a soft spot. How he’s half way normal with his mad dad, beats me. And I really like his languid style of tennis.

jane Says:

i kinda like him too margot, but the hat has got to go. ;)

Okiegal Says:

The trophy is weird, the hat is weirder! But the trophy isn’t as weird as the “spiked” one. You talk about strange looking…..that one takes the cake!! Ummm, cake?? I think I’ll go bake one !! :)

Okiegal Says:

Why doesn’t Rafa move in closer to the baseline? Every knowledgeable tennis person on here and commentators thinks he should. I don’t understand that. Why doesn’t Tony see it?? I’ve harped on this issue many times. Any explanation?? Maybe he’s more comfortable back there? Does anyone know of any matches he’s played where he was closer to the baseline? I don’t get it????

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