2014/10/01

Li Na’s Retirement Ceremony in Around the Grounds Beijing Photo Gallery

(September 30, 2014) BEIJING – Photos by Natalie Ho from around the grounds to the main interview room on Tuesday of the China Open including Li Na’s retirement ceremony.

Abigail Hinto and Natalie Ho are in Beijing, China covering the China Open for Tennis Panorama News. Follow their twitter updates on @TennisNewsTPN.

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Final Push to London Starts in Asia

Tomas Berdych

Tomas Berdych

By Abigail Hinto

(September 30, 2014) BEIJING, CHINA – It’s a tight race to the season-ending World Tour Finals in London with 3 more slots remaining (Stan Wawrinka and Marin Cilic are almost guaranteed in as grand slam champions and are 4th and 5th in the race respectively) and 6 players with a little over 500 race points separating No. 6 Kei Nishikori to No. 11 Grigor Dimotrov.  This week, with Tokyo and Beijing offering 500 points to the winner, could boost a player’s chances of qualifying to the prestigious season-ending event.  And here at the China Open, three of those players are fighting for their spot.

 

Monday night, Dimitrov started his campaign to qualify for the first time to the World Tour Finals with a 3-set victory over Fernando Verdasco.  He faces Pablo Andujar next, a good draw for him in a very loaded field.

 

Tuesday afternoon, Tomas Berdych took his step to once again be part of the 8-player field in London with a comfortable 6-1, 6-2 win over Feliciano Lopez.  Berdych only needed to be solid and steady against a poorly playing Lopez.  Lopez especially had trouble with his serve throwing in double faults in all service games that he was broken.  Twice he double faulted in games when he was down break point.  Berdych has not been playing well in a while, so a solid win plus a win in doubles too, could help him recover his form from earlier in the season when he reached the semis of the Australian Open and won his ninth title in Rotterdam.

 

Another player finding his form is Andy Murray.  He started his Asian swing a week earlier than the other two winning the inaugural title at the Shenzhen Open, his first after his back surgery, where he managed to get through some tough matches.  Murray would like to continue his winning ways to qualify for the 7th straight year for the World Tour Finals held in his home country.  He eked out another tough match Tuesday night against Jerzy Janowicz winning in 3 sets 6-7(9), 6-4, 6-2 in 2 hours and 28 minutes.

 

So who out of these three will make it to London?

 

World No. 1 Novak Djokovic, who already has qualified for the year-end championship, demolished Guillermo García-López 6-2, 6-1 in his opening match.

Abigail Hinto and Natalie Ho are in Beijing, China covering the China Open for Tennis Panorama News. Follow their twitter updates on @TennisNewsTPN.

 

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Rafael Nadal Returns with a Win in Beijing

 

By Abigail Hinto

(September 30, 2014) BEIJING – What rust?  Rafael Nadal didn’t show any rust in his first singles match back to the competition after being sidelined with a right wrist injury for three months.  In a comfortable 6-4, 6-0 win over Richard Gasquet.

Nadal was playing aggressively off both his forehand and backhand, hitting winners all over the court.  Once Gasquet was pushed off the court with Nadal dictating play, and there was nothing more the Frenchman could do to get back in to the point.  His only other option was to be as aggressive as Nadal, which he managed to do well in the first set earning him a couple of break points but which unfortunately for him, he was unable to convert especially in the crucial tenth game as Nadal saved the break point with an ace while serving for the set.

 

The second set saw Gasquet’s frustration boil over as he started making more errors with overly aggressive play while Nadal was as steady as rock both offensively and defensively.

 

There were no signs of the wrist injury from Nadal, “the wrist is much, much better,” according to Nadal.  “Is almost recovered hundred percent.  I cannot say ‘hundred percent’ because when you have some feelings on it when you warm up at the beginning, it’s not hundred percent.  But let’s say 90 something percent.  The most important thing is the wrist is not limiting me to play my tennis, to hit the normal backhand.”

 

Overall, Rafael Nadal is happy to be back on court playing again.  “I have to be happy the way that I played, no?  Three months without a match, winning against a player who is a good player like Richard, is a very positive comeback for me.”

 

“More important than win, lose, is spend time on court.  And winning, I have another chance to play another match after tomorrow, no?”

 

“That’s the key for me today:  spend time on court, play matches.  At least I going to play two matches minimum here.  That’s a positive thing.  I’m going to try my best to play three.”

 

Next up for Nadal is Peter Gojowczyk who took him to three sets earlier this year in Doha in their only meeting so far.

Abigail Hinto and Natalie Ho are in Beijing, China covering the China Open for Tennis Panorama News. Follow their twitter updates on @TennisNewsTPN.

 

Photos by Natalie Ho.

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Marin Cilic is Still Getting Used to being a Grand Slam Champion

Marin Cilic

Marin Cilic

(September 29, 2014) US Open champion Marin Cilic of Croatia opened his quest for the China open in Beijing on Monday with a struggled with a 6-3, 6-4 win over Chinese wild card, world No. 462 Bai Yan.

Cilic who is three weeks removed form capturing his first major title said that he still getting used to being a Grand Slam winner.

“Most of the guys at the top are dealing with that already for few years,” he said. “It’s a bit new thing for me, so I’m learning day to day.

“It’s going to be a process for me, for sure, on all the tournaments to keep my level of the game at the high point where I want it to be.

“I have been dealing little bit with this in the past. I learned couple of lessons. Most important for myself is also not to put too many expectations on my own shoulders from my own side, not to ask too much out of myself. That can be dangerous in a process if things are not working the best I want them to.

“I know it’s always difficult to start tournaments. You know, players are always looking at you much more. I think it’s important for me to keep focusing on improvement of my game and try to, of course, recreate the game I was playing in the US Open.”

Cilic who turned 26 on Sunday and celebrated with four birthday cakes, spoke about returning home to Croatia after Davis Cup weekend, his first trip back since winning Flushing Meadow.

“In Croatia it was extremely special. When I came back after Davis Cup, the country, everybody was very, very happy. You could see whoever I met, they were really happy for me and also proud because Croatia is really small country. In the tennis world, everybody knows everybody. Especially now they follow me already since the beginning of my career. So everybody was just excited about this success.

When I was in my hometown, it was just amazing memory. Huge amount of people. It was, I don’t know, 30,000, 40,000 people on a square. Just was very special.”

China Open Results for ATP
Singles – First Round
[4] M Cilic (CRO) d [WC] Y Bai (CHN) 63 64
[5] G Dimitrov (BUL) d F Verdasco (ESP) 61 36 63
V Pospisil (CAN) d L Rosol (CZE) 64 63
J Sousa (POR) d [Q] T Gabashvili (RUS) 16 76(4) 64
[WC] V Troicki (SRB) d M Youzhny (RUS) 63 64

Doubles – First Round
F Fognini (ITA) / L Mayer (ARG) d [1] D Nestor (CAN) / N Zimonjic (SRB) 36 63 10-6
T Berdych (CZE) / J Isner (USA) d P Andujar (ESP) / R Nadal (ESP) 75 46 10-4

SCHEDULE – TUESDAY, 30 SEPTEMBER 2014

NATIONAL TENNIS STADIUM start 12:30
WTA – E Svitolina (UKR) vs [4] M Sharapova (RUS)

Not Before 2:30 pm
ATP – [1] N Djokovic (SRB) vs G Garcia-Lopez (ESP)
ATP – R Gasquet (FRA) vs [2] R Nadal (ESP)

Not Before 7:45 pm
WTA – [1] S Williams (USA) vs [Q] T Pironkova (BUL)

Not Before 9:00 pm
ATP – [7] E Gulbis (LAT) vs F Fognini (ITA)

LOTUS COURT start 12:30
ATP – [WC] F Lopez (ESP) vs [3] T Berdych (CZE)

Not Before 2:30 pm
WTA – [WC] L Zhu (CHN) vs [2] S Halep (ROU)
WTA – C Garcia (FRA) vs [16] V Williams (USA)

Not Before 6:30 pm
ATP – J Janowicz (POL) vs [6] [WC] A Murray (GBR)

MOON COURT start 12:30
WTA – R Vinci (ITA) vs [5] A Radwanska (POL)
WTA – C Chuang (TPE) / O Govortsova (BLR) vs [5] A Hlavackova (CZE) / S Peng (CHN)
WTA – [8] E Bouchard (CAN) vs S Lisicki (GER)
WTA – R Oprandi (SUI) vs [9] A Ivanovic (SRB)

BRAD DREWETT COURT start 12:30
WTA – K Mladenovic (FRA) / A Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) vs Y Xu (CHN) / J Zheng (CHN)
ATP – [8] J Isner (USA) vs S Giraldo (COL)
ATP – T Robredo (ESP) vs A Seppi (ITA)
ATP – [Q] M Klizan (SVK) vs L Mayer (ARG)

COURT 3 start 12:30
WTA – [15] A Petkovic (GER) vs M Keys (USA)
WTA – [7] A Kerber (GER) vs Z Diyas (KAZ)
WTA – [14] F Pennetta (ITA) vs C Suárez Navarro (ESP)

COURT 4 start 12:30
WTA – [3] K Peschke (CZE) / K Srebotnik (SLO) vs J Gajdosova (AUS) / A Tomljanovic (CRO)
WTA – S Kuznetsova (RUS) vs K Nara (JPN)
ATP-After suitable rest – F Lopez (ESP) / M Mirnyi (BLR) vs L Kubot (POL) / R Lindstedt (SWE)
ATP – J Cabal (COL) / R Farah (COL) vs [2] A Peya (AUT) / B Soares (BRA)

COURT 7 start 12:30
WTA – [12] E Makarova (RUS) vs [Q] P Hercog (SLO)
ATP – [Q] J Brunstrom (SWE) / N Monroe (USA) vs M Cilic (CRO) / S Gonzalez (MEX)
ATP – J Benneteau (FRA) vs P Andujar (ESP)
ATP – [Q] M Kukushkin (KAZ) vs P Cuevas (URU)

COURT 8 start 12:30
ATP – I Karlovic (CRO) vs [Q] P Gojowczyk (GER)

Not Before 2:00 pm
ATP – [3] D Marrero (ESP) / F Verdasco (ESP) vs J Rojer (NED) / H Tecau (ROU)
WTA – [Q] M Barthel (GER) vs [13] L Safarova (CZE)

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Serena Williams Escapes A Bagel Set to Win Opening Round in Beijing

Serena Williams in press

(September 29, 2014) No. 1 Serena Williams escaped a bagel set against her by Spanish qualifier Silvia Soler-Espinosa when she trailed 0-5 in the first set but then reeled off 13 of the next 15 games to win her first round match at the China Open on Monday 7-5, 6-2.

The holder of 18 major titles lost her serve three times in the first 15 minutes of the match to trail 5-0.

“I just didn’t want to lose ‑‑ I didn’t want to lose 6‑Love,” Williams said. “I just started fighting. I was like, Just let me at least try to break here.”

The last player to dish out 6-0 set against the 33-year-old was another Spaniard, Anabel Medina Garrigues, in Madrid last year. Williams won that match 6-3, 0-6, 7-5.

Williams who was forced to retire last week in Wuhan against Alize Cornet due to dizziness, said that she’s better this week.

“I felt good today,” Williams said. “I definitely feel like I was over it.

“This week I’ve been okay. I wasn’t sure if I was going to play or not. You know, I just started hitting a couple days ago, taking it day by day. Finally I decided I’m here, I may as well see what happens. Here I am.”

 

CHINA OPEN 2014 – BEIJING
USD 5,427,105
27 SEP – 5 OCT 2014

RESULTS – SEPTEMBER 29, 2014
Singles – First Round
[1] S Williams (USA) d [Q] S Soler-Espinosa (ESP) 75 62
[9] A Ivanovic (SRB) d [Q] B Bencic (SUI) 62 61
A Cornet (FRA) d [10] J Jankovic (SRB) 75 36 64
[13] L Safarova (CZE) d C Giorgi (ITA) 76(3) 64
[14] F Pennetta (ITA) d C McHale (USA) 76(3) 64
[Q] T Pironkova (BUL) d [WC] M Kirilenko (RUS) 64 61
[Q] M Barthel (GER) d [Q] B Mattek-Sands (USA) 46 61 64
L Davis (USA) d [Q] Y Xu (CHN) 63 63
S Peng (CHN) d [WC] K Zhang (CHN) 64 61
C Garcia (FRA) d S Zhang (CHN) 61 64

Doubles – Second Round
[2] C Black (ZIM) / S Mirza (IND) d C Dellacqua (AUS) / L Raymond (USA) w/o (Dellacqua: lower leg injury)

Doubles – First Round
[7] G Muguruza (ESP) / C Suárez Navarro (ESP) d C McHale (USA) / C Scheepers (RSA) 62 62
[Alt] M Barthel (GER) / M Minella (LUX) d [WC] B Mattek-Sands (USA) / S Zheng (CHN) 76(7) 63
[WC] S Halep (ROU) / I Olaru (ROU) d O Kalashnikova (GEO) / K Koukalova (CZE) 64 76(4)

ORDER OF PLAY – TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 30, 2014
NATIONAL TENNIS STADIUM start 12:30 pm
WTA – E Svitolina (UKR) vs [4] M Sharapova (RUS)

Not Before 2:30 pm
ATP – [1] N Djokovic (SRB) vs G Garcia-Lopez (ESP)
ATP – R Gasquet (FRA) vs [2] R Nadal (ESP)

Not Before 7:45 pm
WTA – [1] S Williams (USA) vs [Q] T Pironkova (BUL)

Not Before 9:00 pm
ATP – [7] E Gulbis (LAT) vs F Fognini (ITA)

LOTUS COURT start 12:30
ATP – [WC] F Lopez (ESP) vs [3] T Berdych (CZE)

Not Before 2:30 pm
WTA – [WC] L Zhu (CHN) vs [2] S Halep (ROU)
WTA – C Garcia (FRA) vs [16] V Williams (USA)

Not Before 6:30 pm
ATP – J Janowicz (POL) vs [6] [WC] A Murray (GBR)

MOON COURT start 12:30
WTA – R Vinci (ITA) vs [5] A Radwanska (POL)
WTA – C Chuang (TPE) / O Govortsova (BLR) vs [5] A Hlavackova (CZE) / S Peng (CHN)
WTA – [8] E Bouchard (CAN) vs S Lisicki (GER)
WTA – R Oprandi (SUI) vs [9] A Ivanovic (SRB)

BRAD DREWETT COURT start 2:00 pm
ATP – [8] J Isner (USA) vs S Giraldo (COL)
ATP – T Robredo (ESP) vs A Seppi (ITA)
ATP – [Q] M Klizan (SVK) vs L Mayer (ARG)

COURT 3 start 12:30
WTA – [15] A Petkovic (GER) vs M Keys (USA)
WTA – [7] A Kerber (GER) vs Z Diyas (KAZ)
WTA – [14] F Pennetta (ITA) vs C Suárez Navarro (ESP)
WTA – K Mladenovic (FRA) / A Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) vs Y Xu (CHN) / J Zheng (CHN)

COURT 4 start 12:30
WTA – [3] K Peschke (CZE) / K Srebotnik (SLO) vs J Gajdosova (AUS) / A Tomljanovic (CRO)
WTA – S Kuznetsova (RUS) vs K Nara (JPN)
ATP-After suitable rest – F Lopez (ESP) / M Mirnyi (BLR) vs L Kubot (POL) / R Lindstedt (SWE)
ATP – J Cabal (COL) / R Farah (COL) vs [2] A Peya (AUT) / B Soares (BRA)

COURT 7 start 12:30
WTA – [12] E Makarova (RUS) vs [Q] P Hercog (SLO)
ATP – [Q] J Brunstrom (SWE) / N Monroe (USA) vs M Cilic (CRO) / S Gonzalez (MEX)
ATP – J Benneteau (FRA) vs P Andujar (ESP)
ATP – [Q] M Kukushkin (KAZ) vs P Cuevas (URU)

COURT 8 start 12:30
ATP – I Karlovic (CRO) vs [Q] P Gojowczyk (GER)

Not Before 2:00 pm
ATP – [3] D Marrero (ESP) / F Verdasco (ESP) vs J Rojer (NED) / H Tecau (ROU)
WTA – [Q] M Barthel (GER) vs [13] L Safarova (CZE)

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Doubles for Singles, Nadal Returns to the Court After Wrist Injury

By Abigail Hinto

(September 29, 2014) BEIJING – Rafael Nadal was back on the court on Monday for the first time since injuring his right wrist in July to play a doubles match at the China Open. He partnered with Spanish compatriot Pablo Andujar in his return.

 

The ever enthusiastic crowd of Chinese fans greeted all four singles players, Rafael Nadal and Pablo Andujar versus Tomas Berdych and John Isner, playing their first matches here at the China Open as doubles players with their usual zeal and passion.  Along with the return of Rafael Nadal to competition after being out for 3 months with a wrist injury, a first round doubles match brought out a full and noisy crowd to the Moon Court of the Beijing National Tennis Center with numerous Spanish flags swaying with the cool breeze under a hot sun.

 

Meanwhile, who cares for a team uniform for these singles players when no one bothered to coordinate with their teammates. Andujar, Berdych and Isner were all in white shirts with varying designs with Berdych sporting printed grey and orange shorts.  Nadal, on the other hand was the standout in an aquamarine/teal shirt with orange highlights and grey shorts.

 

As for the match, both the first and second sets were close with only one break each deciding the winner of the sets.  Andujar was broken in the first set serving 5-6 down, deuce, when Nadal, eager to win the point for his team crossed for a volley, cut it too close and netted the ball.  The second set break came on against Isner’s serve thanks to Andujar’s returning.  No wonder Andujar was chosen by the team to receive Isner’s serve when the first game reached the deciding point. Another good return from Andujar and the break was the Spaniards’.  Nadal then served out the set for 6-4 but not before facing 2 break back points.  A poor return by Berdych off a second serve from Nadal, then another error netting a volley while approaching the net, saw Nadal hold to take the second set.

 

The match was then decided in a match tiebreak which Berdych and Isner ran away with after being down 1-3 with great plays from both players winning 8 consecutive points until eventually winning the match tiebreak 10-4. Final score: 7-5, 4-6, 10-4.

 

A fun, competitive atmosphere for these single players who probably played doubles for match practice but definitely went out there to win.

Nadal begins his quest for the singles title Tuesday, when he faces Richard Gasquet in the opening round.

 

Abigail Hinto and Natalie Ho are in Beijing, China covering the China Open for Tennis Panorama News. Follow their twitter updates on @TennisNewsTPN.

 

Photos by Natalie Ho.

 

 

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Davis Cup Results for September 14, 2014

 

davis_cup_logo_

(September 14, 2014) France will be at home to Switzerland in the 2014 World Group Final on 21-23 November, with details of the venue confirmed later this month.

 

Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Croatia and USA all won their World Group play-off ties to qualify for the 2015 World Group. The World Group play-off losers, Colombia, Israel, Netherlands, Slovakia, Spain, Ukraine and Uzbekistan will contest their respective Zone Group I competitions in 2015.

 

The World Group play-off tie between India and Serbia in Bangalore has been suspended overnight due to rain and will resume at 12:00 local time (06:30 GMT) on Monday.

 

The Draw for the 2015 Davis Cup by BNP Paribas will be held during the ITF AGM in Dubai on Thursday 18 September at 19:00 local time (15:00 GMT). The draw will be live streamed on www.daviscup.com.

 

There is still one tie to be played in both Asia/Oceania Zone Group I and Europe/Africa Zone Group I in October. An announcement will be made on Monday on whether the draws for 2015 Asia/Oceania Zone Groups I and II, and Europe/Africa Zone Groups I and II can be held on 18 September.

 

The seeds for the 2015 Davis Cup Draw will also be announced on Monday. The top two seeds in the 2015 World Group will be the two finalists from 2014, while the remaining seeds will be based on the new Davis Cup Nations Ranking of 15 September.

 

 

WORLD GROUP SEMIFINALS

 

FRANCE defeated CZECH REPUBLIC 4-1

Venue: Roland Garros, Paris, FRA (clay – outdoor)
Richard Gasquet (FRA) d. Tomas Berdych (CZE) 63 62 63
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (FRA) d. Lukas Rosol (CZE) 62 62 63
Richard Gasquet/Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (FRA) d. Tomas Berdych/Radek Stepanek (CZE) 67(5) 64 76(5) 61

Jiri Vesely (CZE) d. Julien Benneteau (FRA) 64 63
Gael Monfils (FRA) d. Lukas Rosol (CZE) 57 64 75

 

SWITZERLAND defeated ITALY 3-2

Venue: Palexpo, Geneva, SUI (hard – indoor)
Roger Federer (SUI) d. Simone Bolelli (ITA) 76(5) 64 64
Stan Wawrinka (SUI) d. Fabio Fognini (ITA) 62 63 62
Simone Bolelli/Fabio Fognini (ITA) d. Marco Chiudinelli/Stan Wawrinka (SUI) 75 36 57 63 62

Roger Federer (SUI) d. Fabio Fognini (ITA) 62 63 76(4)
Andreas Seppi (ITA) d. Michael Lammer (SUI) 64 16 64

 

WORLD GROUP PLAY-OFFS

 

SERBIA level with INDIA 2-2

Venue: KSLTA Tennis Stadium, Bangalore, IND (hard – outdoor)

 

Dusan Lajovic (SRB) d. Yuki Bhambri (IND) 63 62 75
Filip Krajinovic (SRB) d. Somdev Devvarman (IND) 61 46 63 62

Rohan Bopanna/Leander Paes (IND) d. Ilija Bozoljac/Nenad Zimonjic (SRB) 16 67(4) 63 63 86

Somdev Devvarman (IND) d. Dusan Lajovic (SRB) 16 64 46 63 62

Filip Krajinovic (SRB) leads Yuki Bhambri (IND) 63 4-4 (play suspended due to rain)

 

BRAZIL defeated SPAIN 3-1

Venue: Ginasio Estadual Geraldo Jose de Almeida, Sao Paulo, BRA (clay – indoor)

 

Roberto Bautista Agut (ESP) d. Rogerio Dutra Silva (BRA) 60 61 63
Thomaz Bellucci (BRA) d. Pablo Andujar (ESP) 36 67(6) 64 75 63

Marcelo Melo/Bruno Soares (BRA) d. Marc Lopez/David Marrero (ESP) 63 75 75

Thomaz Bellucci (BRA) d. Roberto Bautista Agut (ESP) 64 36 63 62
Rogerio Dutra Silva (BRA) v Pablo Andujar (ESP) not played

 

 

ARGENTINA defeated ISRAEL 3-2

Venue: Sunrise Tennis Club, Sunrise, FL, USA (hard – outdoor)

 

Leonardo Mayer (ARG) d. Bar Tzuf Botzer (ISR) 64 36 62 61

Dudi Sela (ISR) d. Carlos Berlocq (ARG) 63 67(5) 62 62
Jonathan Erlich/Andy Ram (ISR) d. Federico Delbonis/Horacio Zeballos (ARG) 63 36 61 36 63

Leonardo Mayer (ARG) d. Dudi Sela (ISR) 62 61 64
Carlos Berlocq (ARG) d. Bar Tzuf Botzer (ISR) 62 63 60

 

CANADA defeated COLOMBIA 3-2

Venue: Halifax Metro Centre, Halifax, Canada (hard – indoor)

 

Vasek Pospisil (CAN) d. Santiago Giraldo (COL) 63 76(2) 63
Milos Raonic (CAN) d. Alejandro Gonzalez (COL) 63 63 62
Juan-Sebastian Cabal/Robert Farah (COL) d. Daniel Nestor/Vasek Pospisil (CAN) 76(4) 76(7) 64
Milos Raonic (CAN) d. Santiago Giraldo (COL) 61 76(2) 75
Alejandro Gonzalez (COL) d. Frank Dancevic (CAN) 46 75 62

 

 

USA defeated SLOVAKIA 5-0

Venue: Sears Centre Arena, Chicago, IL, USA (hard – indoor)

 

John Isner (USA) d. Norbert Gombos (SVK) 76(5) 64 62
Sam Querrey (USA) d. Martin Klizan (SVK) 76(6) 63 63
Bob Bryan/Mike Bryan (USA) d. Norbert Gombos/Lukas Lacko (SVK) 61 62 61
John Isner (USA) d. Lukas Lacko (SVK) 63 60
Sam Querrey (USA) d. Norbert Gombos (SVK) 64 46 64

 

AUSTRALIA defeated UZBEKISTAN 5-0

Venue: Cottesloe Tennis Club, Perth, AUS (grass – outdoor)

 

Nick Kyrgios (AUS) d. Denis Istomin (UZB) 64 75 64

Lleyton Hewitt (AUS) d. Farrukh Dustov (UZB) 64 64 62
Chris Guccione/Lleyton Hewitt (AUS) d. Farrukh Dustov/Denis Istomin (UZB) 63 76(5) 62

Samuel Groth (AUS) d. Temur Ismailov (UZB) 63 62

Nick Kyrgios (AUS) d. Sanjar Fayziev (UZB) 61 61

CROATIA defeated NETHERLANDS 3-2

Venue: Ziggo Dome, Amsterdam, NED (clay – indoor)

 

Mate Delic (CRO) d. Igor Sijsling (NED) 46 64 75 62

Robin Haase (NED) d. Borna Coric (CRO) 76(4) 61 64
Marin Cilic/Marin Draganja (CRO) d. Robin Haase/Jean-Julien Rojer (NED) 62 36 63 64

Robin Haase (NED) d. Mate Delic (CRO) 36 46 64 61 64

Marin Cilic (CRO) d. Thiemo de Bakker (NED) 67(4) 64 62 75

 

BELGIUM defeated UKRAINE 3-2

Venue: Tere Tennis Centre, Tallinn, EST (hard – indoor)

 

Sergiy Stakhovsky (UKR) d. Steve Darcis (BEL) 67(5) 64 62 62
David Goffin (BEL) d. Illya Marchenko (UKR) 76(1) 63 61
Ruben Bemelmans/Olivier Rochus (BEL) d. Sergei Bubka/Sergiy Stakhovsky (UKR) 62 63 26 36 62
David Goffin (BEL) d. Sergiy Stakhovsky (UKR) 63 61 62
Illya Marchenko (UKR) d. Steve Darcis (BEL) 76(2) 64

AMERICAS ZONE GROUP I – SECOND ROUND PLAY-OFF

URUGUAY defeated VENEZUELA 4-1
Venue: Cancha Central, Caracas, VEN (hard – outdoor)

Pablo Cuevas (URU) d. Jesus Bandres (VEN) 63 62 61
Martin Cuevas (URU) d. Ricardo Rodriguez (VEN) 75 62 63
Martin Cuevas/Pablo Cuevas (URU) d. Luis David Martinez/Roberto Maytin (VEN) 75 62 62
Ricardo Rodriguez (VEN) d. Ariel Behar (URU) 2-1 ret.
Rodrigo Senattore (URU) d. Jesus Bandres (VEN) 46 75 63

ASIA/OCEANIA ZONE GROUP I – FIRST ROUND PLAY-OFF

KOREA, REPUBLIC defeated CHINESE TAIPEI 3-1
Venue: Kaohsiung Yangming Tennis Courts, Kaohsiung City, TPE (hard – outdoor)

Lim Yong-Kyu (KOR) d. Hung Jui Chen (TPE) 62 62 60
Chung Hyeon (KOR) d. Wang Chieh Fu (TPE) 64 75 62
Chen Ti/Peng Hsien Yin (TPE) d. Chung Hyeon/Lim Yong-Kyu (KOR) 76(3) 36 16 75 63
Chung Hyeon (KOR) d. Chen Ti (TPE) 60 36 67(3) 63 3-0 ret.
Wang Chieh Fu (TPE) v Lim Yong-Kyu (KOR) not played

EUROPE/AFRICA ZONE GROUP I – FIRST ROUND PLAY-OFF

ROMANIA defeated SWEDEN 3-1
Venue: Arenele BNR, Bucharest, ROU (clay – outdoor)

Christian Lindell (SWE) d. Adrian Ungur (ROU) 75 76(2) 64
Marius Copil (ROU) d. Elias Ymer (SWE) 62 63 62
Florin Mergea/Horia Tecau (ROU) d. Isak Arvidsson/Johan Brunstrom (SWE) 76(2) 76(5) 63
Adrian Ungur (ROU) d. Elias Ymer (SWE) 36 64 76(4) 63
Marius Copil (ROU) v Christian Lindell (SWE) not played

AUSTRIA defeated LATVIA 4-1
Venue: Vidzemes Olimpiskaos Centrs, Valmiera, LAT (hard – indoor)

Martin Fischer (AUT) d. Andis Juska (LAT) 63 63 62
Jurgen Melzer (AUT) d. Janis Podzus (LAT) 63 61 64
Ernests Gulbis/Mikelis Libietis (LAT) d. Philipp Oswald/Alexander Peya (AUT) 75 76(3) 64
Jurgen Melzer (AUT) d. Mikelis Libietis (LAT) 62 62 64
Martin Fischer (AUT) d. Janis Podzus (LAT) 76(6) 64


EUROPE/AFRICA ZONE GROUP I – SECOND ROUND PLAY-OFF

RUSSIA defeated PORTUGAL 4-1
Venue: Olympic Stadium, Moscow, RUS (hard – indoor)

Andrey Kuznetsov (RUS) d. Gastao Elias (POR) 62 64 64
Evgeny Donskoy (RUS) d. Joao Sousa (POR) 76(7) 64 36 61
Konstantin Kravchuk/Andrey Rublev (RUS) d. Gastao Elias/Joao Sousa (POR) 63 64 64
Rui Machado (POR) d. Konstantin Kravchuk (RUS) 67(4) 64 61

Andrey Rublev (RUS) d. Frederico Ferreira Silva (POR) 64 64

AMERICAS ZONE GROUP II – THIRD ROUND

BARBADOS defeated MEXICO 3-2
Venue: National Tennis Centre, St Michael, BAR (hard – outdoor)

Tigre Hank (MEX) d. Haydn Lewis (BAR) 75 64 63
Darian King (BAR) d. Miguel-Angel Reyes-Varela (MEX) 64 64 62
Santiago Gonzalez/Tigre Hank (MEX) d. Darian King/Haydn Lewis (BAR) 64 64 36 46 64
Darian King (BAR) d. Tigre Hank (MEX) 62 62 75
Haydn Lewis (BAR) d. Lucas Gomez (MEX) 26 63 61 63

ASIA/OCEANIA ZONE GROUP II – THIRD ROUND

THAILAND defeated PAKISTAN 4-1
Venue: The National Tennis Development Center, Nonthaburi, THA (hard – outdoor)

Pruchya Isarow (THA) d. Aisam Qureshi (PAK) 36 63 63 62
Danai Udomchoke (THA) d. Samir Iftikhar (PAK) 60 64 61
Sanchai Ratiwatana/Sonchat Ratiwatana (THA) d. Aqeel Khan/Aisam Qureshi (PAK) 75 62 62
Danai Udomchoke (THA) d. Muhammed Abid (PAK) 60 61
Samir Iftikhar (PAK) d. Pruchya Isarow (THA) 46 63 1-1 ret.

EUROPE/AFRICA ZONE GROUP II – THIRD ROUND

LITHUANIA defeated BOSNIA/HERZEGOVINA 3-2
Venue: Mojmilo Sports Hall, Sarajevo, BIH (hard – indoor)

Ricardas Berankis (LTU) d. Mirza Basic (BIH) 57 36 64 64 64
Damir Dzumhur (BIH) d. Laurynas Grigelis (LTU) 67(5) 61 61 1-0 ret.
Ricardas Berankis/Laurynas Grigelis (LTU) d. Mirza Basic/Tomislav Brkic (BIH) 63 63 76(4)
Ricardas Berankis (LTU) d. Damir Dzumhur (BIH) 64 64 64
Nerman Fatic (BIH) d. Lukas Mugevicus (LTU) 67(6) 63 64

DENMARK defeated MOLDOVA 3-2
Venue: Bramdrupdam Hallerne, Kolding, DEN (carpet – indoor)

Radu Albot (MDA) d. Martin Pedersen (DEN) 75 63 62
Frederik Nielsen (DEN) d. Maxim Dubarenco (MDA) 62 62 63
Thomas Kromann/Frederik Nielsen (DEN) d. Radu Albot/Maxim Dubarenco (MDA) 62 64 64
Radu Albot (MDA) d. Frederik Nielsen (DEN) 75 63 63
Martin Pedersen (DEN) d. Maxim Dubarenco (MDA) 36 76(1) 64 36 75

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DAVIS CUP: U.S. SHUTS OUT SLOVAKIA – Isner, Querrey victories give Americans a 5-0 win in the World Group Play-off

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DAVIS CUP: U.S. SHUTS OUT SLOVAKIA
Isner, Querrey victories give Americans a 5-0 win in the World Group Play-off

By Junior Williams

(September 14, 2014) HOFFMAN ESTATES, Illinois – John Isner and Sam Querrey closed out the Davis Cup World-Group Play-off by winning their respective matches, giving the United States a 5-0 victory over Slovakia at Sears Center Arena in suburban Chicago.

Both matches were dead rubbers, since the U.S. clinched a spot in the World Group for 2015 courtesy of Bob and Mike Bryan’s doubles victory on Saturday.

In the first match, Isner – the No. 1 American and 16th ranked player in the world – defeated Lukas Lacko 6-3, 6-0 in only 42 minutes, converting four out of eight break points and posting 22 total winners to Lacko’s four.

In the post-match interview, Isner said he was happy the match went “pretty quickly” and was looking forward to watching some football.

In the second match, Slovakia’s Norbert Gombos did his best to prevent his team from being shut out, but the world’s 126th-ranked player was outlasted by Sam Querrey 6-4, 4-6, 6-4 in a hard-hitting, fast-serving contest.

After Gombos broke Querrey to win the second set — the only set Slovakia won during the three days of competition — the number-two American broke Gombos to go up 4-3 in the third set, and went on to close out the match with a service winner.

Here’s how close the match was: Querrey scored 96 points, Gombos 92.

Despite Gombos’ three defeats (including one to Isner in singles, another to the Bryans in doubles) , U.S. Davis Cup captain Jim Courier had nothing but good things to say about the Slovak during the post-match interview, expressing how impressed he was with Gombos’ play.

The U.S. victory marks the first time the Americans shut out their opponent in a Davis Cup tie since 2012 — a first-round victory in Switzerland against a team featuring 17-time major champion Roger Federer, and Stan Wawrinka — who has since gone on to win the 2014 Australian Open.

Slovakia is now 0-3 against the U.S. in Davis Cup competition and is headed back to Europe/Africa Zone Group I. Both countries will learn about their next opponents when the Davis Cup draw for 2015 takes place Thursday in Dubai.

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France to Host Switzerland in Davis Cup Final

 

(September 14, 2014) For the first time in 22 years, Switzerland is in the Davis Cup final. No. 1 singles player from Switzerland, Roger Federer clinched the tie versus Italy on Sunday, defeating Fabio Fognini 6-2, 6-3, 7-6 (4) for an unassailable 3-1 lead in Geneva.

France will play host to Switzerland in the Davis Cup final November 21-23. France clinched their berth in the final on Saturday, winning the doubles rubber to take a 3-0 lead. They completed the tie on Sunday 4-1 over the Czech Republic at Roland Garros, site of the French Open.

“It’s nice sharing the emotions with your fans and team members,” Federer said in an on-court interview after the match.

“It was a pretty quick court, so if you’re not serving so well there are always going to be errors – it wasn’t the best performance for either of us.

“Some of the best match-ups I’ve had have been against France, but we’re very pleased to be in the final.”

The French team is looking for their first Davis Cup title since 2001, while Switzerland is seeking their first-ever Davis Cup crown.

Team France says they are ready for the challenge.

“Everybody speaks about a dream final against Switzerland, but for me the dream is just that France will be there,” said French Davis Cup captain Arnaud Clement said. “With Federer and Stan Wawrinka, It’s obviously a big contest but the important thing is that we are in the final.”

“Federer is a monument of tennis, this is a dream final,” said Richard Gasquet in press on Sunday.

“There is no need for motivation when you are in the final, but hosting Federer adds an extra something to a sumptuous final,” Julien Benneteau said.

Although not official, it’s been reported that the northern French city of Lille will host the final.

The French have a 10-2 record versus Switzerland in Davis Cup play.

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Davis Cup: U.S. Remains in the World Group, Bryan twins clinch for Americans in straight sets over Slovakia

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DAVIS CUP: U.S. REMAINS IN WORLD GROUP

Bryan twins clinch for Americans in straight sets over Slovakia

 

By Junior Williams

 

(September 13, 2014) HOFFMAN ESTATES, Illinois — World No. 1 doubles team Bob and Mike Bryan made quick work of Slovakia’s Norbert Gombos and Lukas Lacko, winning 6-1, 6-2, 6-1 in one hour 16 minutes — giving the United States an unassailable 3-0 lead in the Davis Cup World Group Play-off at Sears Centre Arena in suburban Chicago, assuring the Americans will remain in the World Group in 2015.

 

Early in the first set, the Bryans broke Slovakia to go up 2-1 after Gombos hit a backhand volley wide. After that, it was full steam ahead for the U.S team, which won 21 out of 26 points at the net and 83-percent of its first-serve points.

 

Slovakia captain Miloslav Mecir went with Gombos instead of the originally scheduled doubles specialist Michal Mertinak.

 

The Bryans capped off their victory with an ace, to the delight of the U.S. fans in the crowd.

 

For Slovakia, it’s wait ’til next year as the team will once again attempt to re-join the Davis Cup elite for the first time since 2006.

The Bryans just came off winning their 16h major and 100th title by capturing the US Open doubles title said that Saturday’s win felt better than the US Open..

“It feels like it’s all part of the same summer,” Mike Bryan said.  “We had our goals, which was to win the US Open and come in here and help the team get to the World Group.
“Just feels it’s all one emotion.  We can kind of exhale and kind of enjoy it.  Yeah, when we won the Open it was great, but we shifted our focus very quickly to this tie.
“We never really relaxed.  Now we can exhale and enjoy the next couple weeks before we go over to Asia.
“But this is a really sweet feeling to finish the summer like this.”

 

Sunday’s dead rubber matches are scheduled to feature number one American John Isner versus Martin Klizan, and Sam Querrey versus Gombos. But with U.S. having clinched the tie, it is unlikely those pairings will hold.

 

===========

 

EXTRAS: After their victory, the Bryans celebrated by hitting lots of autographed balls in the crown, and also engaged in a mini-exhibition match with two of the “Team Bryan” kids. Bob and Mike’s dad Wayne Bryan served as the umpire.

 

Junior Williams is a long-time journalist and tennis fan.  At a moment’s notice he can give you a list of all the Davis Cup match-ups that would give the US home ties. He is in Illinois covering the Davis Cup first round World Group Play-off tie between the United States and Slovakia for Tennis Panorama News.

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