June 28, 2017

Australian Open Smashes TV Ratings Records Around the World

 

 

 

Australian Open smashes TV ratings records around the world

 

Australian Open 2017 has smashed TV ratings records both in Australia and around the world.

 

(February 4, 2017) Tennis Australia – On Sunday night (29 January), more than 3.5 million people in Australia tuned in to watch the historic final between Roger Federer (SUI) and Rafael Nadal (ESP), with the audience peaking at 4.4m and making it the most watched Australian Open match in more than  a decade, beating the combined shares on Channel Nine, Network 10, ABC and SBS.

 

The men’s singles final also topped the AFL and NRL 2016 grand finals in audience viewership, stealing the NRL’s title as the most watched final in Australia, with 9.63 million hours viewed.

 

Serena Williams’ seventh Australian Open victory in the women’s final delivered a peak domestic TV audience of 2.42 million, and was the most watched program that day, beating men’s Big Bash Cricket final by 360,000 combined viewers.

 

Around the world  both ESPN USA and Eurosport celebrated record figures, with the men’s final dubbed the most-watched tennis match of all time by Eurosport, while the Williams sisters spectacular drew the biggest AO women’s audience on ESPN since moving to a 3.00am ET start time.

 

Australian Open Tournament Director Craig Tiley said he was pleased, but t not surprised, by the record ratings.

 

“The numbers speak for themselves, people love great tennis”, Tiley said.

 

“We witnessed history on Saturday and Sunday night. Serena and Venus in the ultimate showdown, 14 years since they last played each other at Melbourne Park, and Roger and Rafa, two legends with a compelling comeback story that is unprecedented.

 

“Through theTennis Australia in-househost broadcast and production teams, we will continue to ensure that world class tennis is produced to a high standard and available to all, both here in Australia and around the world.  it’s historic moments such as these that capture the imagination of the sporting world,” Australian Open Tournament Director Craig Tiley said.

 

Australian Open 2017 domestic broadcast ratings statistics:

 

  • Broadcast reached 6.5m viewers nationally on final day, taking cumulative reach to 11.8m for tournament

 

  • The men’s singles final claimed Channel Seven the No. 1 network with 54.5% FTA metro share at night, beating the combined shares on Networks Nine, TEN, ABC and SBS

 

  • Men’s singles final ranked the most watched program on the night, taking top spot for 2017 YTD

 

  • Men’s Final averaged 3.6m combined (metro + regional) and peaked at 4.4m, making it the most watched finals match in over a decade
  • Men’s singles final match was up 63% year-on-year  for combined (metro + regional) viewing, and up 64% for metro markets

 

  • The men’s singles final beat both the AFL and NRL 2016 grand finals in audience viewership, with an 81% audience increase over the 2016 NRL grand final and a 19% audience increase over the 2016 AFL grand final, making Federer and Nadal’s match the most watched Australian final with 9.63 million hours viewed

 

  • At 3hrs 38min, the Roger / Rafa match lasted nearly twice as long as the NRL grand final (2hrs), and 1hr more than the AFL grand final

 

  • The final showdown between the Williams sisters made Seven the No.1 network with a 31.8% free-to-air metro share at night (Nine 23.0%, TEN 24.0%)

 

  • Serena Williams’ seventh Australian Open victory in the women’s final delivered a peak domestic TV audience of 2.42 million, and was the most watched program that day, beating men’s Big Bash Cricket final by 360,000 combined viewers

 

  • A peak domestic TV audience of 2.1 million tuned into Rafael Nadal’s semifinal victory over Grigor Dimitrov while a peak of 2.2 million tuned into watch Roger Federer play Stan Wawrinka in the other men’s semifinal.

 

Australian Open 2017 international broadcast ratings statistics:

 

·                The men’s singles final was aired live in more than 220 territories on more than 65 different TV channels, reaching more than 900 million homes

 

·                The men’s singles final was the most watched Australian Open men’s final in 13 years in the US on ESPN, with an average 1.13m viewers between ESPN (1.085m) and WatchESPN (48k) from 3.00AM ET – 107% up on 2016

 

·                In Europe, the men’s singles final was Eurosport’s highest rating tennis match of all-time and second most watched sport event in Eurosport’s history, reaching 20.7m via Eurosport and Discovery-owned Free-to-Air channels. It was the most-watched Eurosport programme in both Spain and the Netherlands

 

·                The women’s singles final had an average 953,000 viewers on ESPN, up 37% on 2016 and attracted the biggest AO women’s audience since moving to a 3.00am ET start time. It was the second most watched sport programme of all programs aired on US cable TV that day

 

·                Eurosport’s audiences for the tournament were up 26% from 2016, including dedicated feeds into eleven countries including UK, France, Germany, Spain and Italy.

 

·                In the USA, live coverage on ESPN and ESPN2 ranked each day within the top five and top ten of the most watched live sports programs in the country

 

·                In Japan, Kei Nishikori’s matches were broadcast live by free-to-air broadcaster NHK and generated a market share of more than 20 per cent. It peaked higher than Japan’s most watched event, the New Year Grand Sumo Tournament

 

·                In China, up to Day 10, the main terrestrial channel CCTV5 reached more than  400 million households and aired more than 32 hours of coverage

 

·                All 411 main draw matches were streamed live to over 175 territories including, for the first time, China and Japan – a Grand Slam first.  In addition, the Tennis Australia media rights team delivered live encoded feeds of all match courts to selected broadcasters including Sky New Zealand, Fox Sports Asia, IQIYI China, Sony India and SuperSport Africa

 

·                SuperSport Africa and beIN Sports Middle East also took from BT Tower London the permanent host broadcast feeds of Rod Laver Arena and Margaret Court Arena for the entire tournament. Sportsnavi Live from Japan took, in addition, the Hisense Arena host broadcast feed whilst main draw matches were played.

 

Fast facts on Australian Open 2017 host broadcast

 

  • Tennis Australia’s Host Broadcast team produced more than 840 matches live, up from 641 in 2016, including all main draw, juniors, legends and wheelchair matches plus countless practice sessions

 

  • In its third year of managing the Australian Open host broadcast, Tennis Australia provided the most comprehensive broadcast coverage of any Grand Slam, including up to 16 match courts boasting coverage of all matches in all draws – including main draw singles, doubles, mixed doubles, juniors, qualifying, wheelchair and legends

 

  • The host broadcast team covered 12 practice courts – eight outside courts with dedicated cameras plus one camera inside across four indoor courts

 

  • In a first for any tennis tournament worldwide,  and any sporting event in Australia, Australian Open 2017 featured Hawkeye 4K Ultra Motion in all three stadiums

 

  • More than 130 individual host broadcast cameras across Melbourne Park captured all the action on and off the court more than previous years and more than  any other Grand Slam

 

  • Total 362 staff and freelance crew plus 20 talent working across the host broadcast and world feed productions on-site

 

  • Both the women’s and men’s singles finals featured access to 47 cameras – including three Extreme Slo Mo NAC cameras and seven Super Slo Mo cameras, an RF techno crane, Spidercam and the first-ever use of Eye Cam, a stadium lens embedded in the umpire’s chair, never before used in tennis coverage.

 

 

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Roger Federer Defeats Rafael Nadal To Win Australian Open for 18th Major Championship

 

 

(January 29, 2017) No. 17 seed Roger Federer defeated No. 9 seed Rafael Nadal 6-4, 3-6, 6-1, 3-6, 6-3 to win his fifth Australian Open title, his 18th major championship.

 

The 35-year-old Swiss rallied from 1-3 down in the final set, winning the last five straight games to close out the match. This was the first time that Federer had ever beaten the Spaniard at the Australian Open, losing three times before.

 

Winning a major as the 17th seed, equals 14-time major winner Pete Sampras, who won his last major as the 17th seed at the 2002 U. S. Open.

Federer also is the first to win a major, beating four Top Ten players along the way since 1982. He beat (10) Tomas Berdych in the third round, (5) Kei Nishikori in the fourth round, (4) Stan Wawrinka in the semifinals and (9) Rafael Nadal in the final.

 

Each of the first four sets swayed with whoever broke serve. Federer took a medical time out, off court after the fourth set. However in the fifth set Nadal took a 3-1 lead and never won another game in the match.

With the victory, Federer will move up to No. 10 in the world and the 30-year-old Nadal will climb to No. 6.

“For me it’s all about the comeback, about an epic match with Rafa again,” Federer said in his news conference. Doing it here in Australia, that I’m so thankful to Peter Carter and Tony Roche, and just people… I guess my popularity here, their support, that I can still do it at my age after not having won a slam for almost five years.

“That’s what I see. The last problem is the slam count. Honestly, it doesn’t matter.”

“I told myself to play free. That’s what we discussed with Ivan and Severin before the matches. You play the ball, you don’t play the opponent. Be free in your head, be free in your shots, go for it. The brave will be rewarded here. I didn’t want to go down just making shots, seeing forehands rain down on me from Rafa. I think it was the right decision at the right time.

“I had opportunities early on in the fifth, as well, to get back on even terms. I could have been left disappointed there and accepted that fact. I kept on fighting. I kept on believing, like I did all match long today, that there was a possibility I could win this match.

“I think that’s what made me play my best tennis at the very end the match, which was actually surprising to me. I went through a little bit of a lull in the fourth and the beginning of the fifth set.
 

“It was a long shot for both men reaching the final as both men were coming back to the tour from injuries. Federer was off the tour for six months to rehabilitate his knee, while Nadal took off the last few months due to a wrist injury.”

“I think have been a great match,” said Nadal. “I enjoy to be part of it. I fight to try to have the trophy with me. I had some chances in the fifth with break up.

“But is true that after I had the break, he played very aggressive, hitting a lot of great shots. So was tough to hold the serve every time, no?

“I had the chance to keep holding the serve. If I hold that one, you never know. You are two games, just two games away. But I didn’t, so…

“Well, that’s it, no? I believe that he played super aggressive during the whole match. Tough chances to play the way I wanted to play. But still like this, I played, I think, with the right attitude, trying to do my things, fighting for every ball.

“Is true that probably remain a little bit of speed today compared to the last day in my legs probably, little bit. But that’s normal after what happened one day and a half ago.

“Like this I think I tried. I didn’t play bad. But is true was difficult to play a lot because he really went for the shots, almost for every shots.”

Federer was asked about his great rivalry with Nadal: “We go furthest back, you know. Novak also has been one of my biggest rivals. So have Roddick and Hewitt. I don’t like to leave anybody out, to be honest. But I’m sure I’ve left a couple out. They know who they are.

“But Rafa definitely has been very particular in my career. I think he made me a better player. Him and a couple more players have done the most to do that to me because the way his game stacks up with me, it’s a tricky one. I’ve said that openly. It remains for me the ultimate challenge to play against him. So it’s definitely very special.

“I said that also before the finals: if I were to win against Rafa, it would be super special and very sweet because I haven’t beaten him in a Grand Slam final for a long, long time now. Last time I guess was 2007 at Wimbledon in a five-setter. Now I was able to do it again.

“We’re both on a comeback. Like I said on the court, it would have been nice for both of us to win, but there’s no draws in tennis. It’s brutal sometimes.

“He should be happy. I would have been happy again to be in the finals, like I said on the court. I think this one will take more time to sink in. When I go back to Switzerland, I’ll think, Wow.

“The magnitude of this match is going to feel different. I can’t compare this one to any other one except for maybe the French Open in ’09. I waited for the French Open, I tried, I fought. I tried again and failed. Eventually I made it. This feels similar”

 

“At the end of the day is another title, ” said Nadal. “There is a winner, there is a loser. In these kind of matches, anyone can”win. Being honest, in these kind of matches, I won a lot of times against him. Today he beat me. Just congratulate him. Is not more than another important title for him, another important two weeks for me. Even if didn’t finish the way that I wanted, have been an important two weeks for me.

“The only thing that I can do is congratulate him and go back home with very positive feelings for me.
Federer last won in Melbourne in 2010. The win sets for biggest gap between claiming Australian Open titles.”

 

 

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Serena Williams Defeats Sister Venus for Australian Open Title for Open Era Record 23rd Major

(January 28, 2017) Serena Williams has won an Open Era record 23rd major title when she defeated her older sister Venus 6-4, 6-4 to win her seventh Australian Open title on Saturday night in Melbourne.

Serena, who just passed Steffi Graf with 22 majors, is just one major behind Margaret Court for the all-time record which is 24.

The win puts Serena back at the top spot in the WTA rankings as of Monday. Venus will move up to No.11.

Serena did not drop a set in the tournament. She now holds the record for the most number Australian Open singles titles for a woman.

This is the 35-year-old Williams’ tenth major title since turning 30. This was the oldest major woman’s final in terms of combined age at 71 years, 11 months between them.

She is now 23-6 in major finals and 7-2 in major finals against her sister. Serena is now 17-11 against Venus overall.

“This was a tough one. I really would like to take this moment to congratulate Venus,” Serena Williams said during the trophy presentation. “She’s an amazing person. There’s no way I’d be at 23 without her. She’s my inspiration and the only reason I’m standing here today. Thanks for inspiring me to be the best player I can be.”

 

The match itself was not an instant classic. The match began with four straight breaks of serve/ Both women committed a total of 48 unforced errors in the 1 hour and 22-minute match.

“I feel like I had opportunities, for sure. Just missed some shots,” Venus said. But it’s not like I missed shots that I wasn’t going for. I went for those shots. It’s a matter of inches.

“So, you know, some errors here or there can mean the difference between a break of serve or a hold.”

“It’s such a great feeling to have 23,” Serena said. “It really feels great. Yeah, I’ve been chasing it for a really long time. It feels like, really long time. When it got on my radar, I knew I had an opportunity to get there, and I’m here. I’m here.

“It’s a great feeling. No better place to do it than Melbourne.”

“My first Grand Slam started here, and getting to 23 here, but playing Venus, it’s stuff that legends are made of. I couldn’t have written a better story.

“I just feel like it was the right moment. Everything kind of happened. It hasn’t quite set in yet, but it’s really good.”

“It was great to have an opportunity to play for the title,” Venus said discussing her rn to the final. “That’s exactly where I want to be standing during these Grand Slams, is on finals day, having an opportunity. That’s the highlight of all this, is to be in that moment.”

“A lot of great performances, you know. I didn’t lose a set until the semifinals. Played against a lot of players who were in form. So it’s a good thing.

“It’s a great start to the year. I’m looking forward to the rest of year. This is like tournament number two and it’s already a lot of work. I’m looking forward to tournament number three and four. It’s going to be awesome.”

For the No. 13 seed Venus this was just her second Australian Open final, the last won coming in 2003, when she lost to her sister.

“I feel motivated to continue, to continue to go out there and hit the ball the way I know I can,” Venus said about her year so far. “There’s only things I can improve on, to be honest, and to build on.

“I feel I played very well this week, pulled a lot of things out of my pocket. I got more stuff in my pocket. Get it out.”

On going after major No. 24, Serena said:”One thing I learned in the past is you have to enjoy it. That’s the beauty of winning Australia, you have a few months to relax. If you win the French, it’s like back-to-back-to-back-to-back. Australia, you have time to enjoy the moment before the next Grand Slam.”

“Well, so far I’ve been celebrating by doing non-stop press. But, you know, it’s fine. I feel good. Just to even talk about it is great. But it’s getting late. I don’t know how I’ll celebrate. I don’t know.

“I’m just still excited. Hopefully I’ll be able to sleep.”

The victory for Serena marks the 30th major title for the Williams family.

“We are just so proud,” said the winner. “We feel so fortunate to have this opportunity to be the ones that can do it, you know. Venus and I work so hard. Still to this day we work side-by-side each other at practice. We motivate each other. Like I said on the court, every time she won her match, I felt obligated to win, I’ve got to win, too.

“The motivation she gives me, it’s really second to nothing. It’s amazing.”

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Fedal XXXV – Tale of the Tape – Roger Federer vs Rafael Nadal

2017 AUSTRALIAN OPEN

DAY 14 MEN’S NOTES

Sunday 29 January

 

Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal at 2010 Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day

Singles Final

9 RAFAEL NADAL (ESP) v NO. 17 ROGER FEDERER (SUI)

This is the 105th edition of the Australian Championships, which began in 1905, as well as being the 49th Australian Open and the 196th Grand Slam tournament of the Open Era. Melbourne Park has hosted the tournament for the 30th year. It was first played here in 1988, when the venue was known as Flinders Park.

(Seed) Player Country Age Ranking Best Australian Open performance Best Grand Slam performance
(9) Rafael Nadal ESP 30 9 W 2009 14 Grand Slam titles
(17) Roger Federer SUI 35 17 W 2004, 2006-07, 10 17 Grand Slam titles

 

 

At stake for the finalists, in addition to the prestige of the Australian Open title, is the following:

 

 
AUD$
ATP Ranking Points
Champion 3,700,000 2000
Finalist 1,850,000 1200

ATP Rankings update…

If he wins the title, Federer will re-enter the Top 10, at No. 10, when the new ATP Rankings are released on Monday 30 January. If Nadal wins, he will rise to No. 4. By reaching the final here, Federer has ensured he will climb to No. 14, while Nadal has ensured he will move up to No. 6.

 

 

Who has the advantage?
For 5 out of the past 9 years, the man who played his semifinal second has been the one who won the final, so recent history would suggest that Nadal has the slight advantage in winning the 2017 Australian Open title.

Record-breakers
Federer is looking to become the first man in history to win 5 or more titles at 3 different Grand Slam events. He has won a total of 4 Australian Opens, 7 Wimbledons, 5 US Opens and one Roland Garros. Victory today would also see him take sole ownership of 3rd place on the list for most Australian Open titles and close the gap on Novak Djokovic and Roy Emerson, who have each won 6 Australian titles.

 

Nadal is bidding to become the first man in the Open Era – and only the 3rd man in history – to win each of the 4 Grand Slam titles twice. Emerson and Rod Laver are the only players to have won each Grand Slam on 2 or more occasions. [NB while Laver completed the feat in 1969, some of the titles were won before the start of the Open Era].

 

The winner of today’s match will set the record for the longest wait between Australian Open titles in the Open Era. Nadal is bidding to end an 8-year wait for the Australian Open crown and win here for the for the first time since 2009, while Federer is looking to end a 7-year wait and win here for the first time since 2010. The longest gap between winning Australian Open titles in the Open Era is 5 years – Boris Becker (1991 and 1996) and Andre Agassi (1995 and 2000). The longest gap between winning a Grand Slam title in the Open Era at the same event is 8 years – Jimmy Connors won Wimbledon in 1974 and again in 1982.

 

Head-to-head: Nadal leads 23-11

2004     AMS Miami                   Hard (O)           R32      Nadal                63 63

2005     AMS Miami                   Hard (O)           FR        Federer             26 67(4) 76(5) 63 61

2005     Roland Garros             Clay (O)            SF        Nadal               63 46 64 63

2006     Dubai                           Hard (O)           FR        Nadal                26 64 64

2006     AMS Monte Carlo          Clay(O)             FR        Nadal                62 67(2) 63 76(5)

2006     AMS Rome                   Clay (O)            FR        Nadal                67(0) 76(5) 64 26 76(5)

2006     Roland Garros             Clay (O)            FR        Nadal               16 61 64 76(4)

2006     Wimbledon                  Grass (O)         FR        Federer            60 76(5) 67(2) 63

2006     Tennis Masters Cup      Hard (I)             SF        Federer             64 75

2007     AMS Monte Carlo          Clay (O)            FR        Nadal                64 64

2007     AMS Hamburg              Clay (O)            FR        Federer             26 62 60

2007     Roland Garros             Clay (O)            FR        Nadal               63 46 63 64

2007     Wimbledon                  Grass (O)         FR        Federer            76(7) 46 76(3) 26 62

2007     Tennis Masters Cup      Hard (I)             SF        Federer             64 61

2008     AMS Monte Carlo          Clay (O)            FR        Nadal                75 75

2008     AMS Hamburg              Clay(O)             FR        Nadal                75 67(3) 63

2008     Roland Garros             Clay (O)            FR        Nadal               61 63 60

2008     Wimbledon                  Grass (O)         FR        Nadal               64 64 67(5) 67(8) 97

2009     Australian Open           Hard (O)           FR        Nadal               75 36 76(3) 36 62

2009     Madrid-1000                  Clay (O)            FR        Federer             64 64

2010     Madrid-1000                  Clay (O)            FR        Nadal                64 76(5)

2010     ATP World Tour Finals   Hard (I)             FR        Federer             63 36 61

2011     Miami-1000                   Hard (O)           SF        Nadal                63 62

2011     Madrid-1000                  Clay (O)            SF        Nadal                57 61 63

2011     Roland Garros             Clay (O)            FR        Nadal               75 76(3) 57 61

2011     ATP World Tour Finals   Hard (I)             RR        Federer             63 60

2012     Australian Open          Hard (O)           SF        Nadal               67(5) 62 76(5) 64

2012     Indian Wells-1000          Hard (O)           SF        Federer             63 64

2013     Indian Wells-1000          Hard (O)           QF        Nadal                64 62

2013     Rome-1000                   Clay (O)            FR        Nadal                61 63

2013     Cincinnati-1000              Hard (O)           QF        Nadal                57 64 63

2013     ATP World Tour Finals   Hard (I)             SF        Nadal                75 63

2014     Australian Open           Hard (O)           SF        Nadal               76(4) 63 63

2015     Basel                            Hard (I)             FR        Federer             63 57 63

 

This is Nadal and Federer’s 12th Grand Slam encounter, putting them in 3rd place for the most matches played at the majors in the Open Era.

           Most Grand Slam match-ups (Open Era)

Players No. of match-ups Win-loss
Roger Federer v Novak Djokovic

 

15 Djokovic leads 9-6
Novak Djokovic v Rafael Nadal

 

13 Nadal leads 9-4
Roger Federer v Rafael Nadal 12 Nadal leads 9-2
Novak Djokovic v Andy Murray 10 Djokovic leads 8-2
Ivan Lendl v John McEnroe 10 Lendl leads 7-3

 

This is the 9th meeting between these 2 players in a Grand Slam final which extends their lead for the most match-ups in a Grand Slam final in the Open Era.

 

Most head-to-heads in Grand Slam finals (Open Era)

Head-to-head Grand Slam final meetings
Roger Federer v Rafael Nadal 9
Novak Djokovic v Rafael Nadal

Novak Djokovic v Andy Murray

7

7

Andre Agassi v Pete Sampras

Ivan Lendl v Mats Wilander

5

5

Nadal has won 6 of their previous 8 Grand Slam final meetings – including here in 2009, when he won in 5 sets to win his only title at the Australian Open.

 

This is the 35th meeting between Federer and Nadal. This is the joint 6th-most matches played in a head-to-head at Tour-level in the Open Era:

 

Novak Djokovic v Rafael Nadal 49
Roger Federer v Novak Djokovic 45
Ivan Lendl v John McEnroe 36
Jimmy Connors v Ivan Lendl 36
Novak Djokovic v Andy Murray 36
Jimmy Connors v John McEnroe 35
Boris Becker v Stefan Edberg 35
Roger Federer v Rafael Nadal 35

 

Federer ended a 5-match losing streak against Nadal in their most recent meeting, the final at 2015 Basel. Last year was the first year since the pair’s first meeting in 2004 that they have not contested at least one match.

 

Nadal is on a 6-match winning streak against Federer at the Grand Slams, having not lost to the Swiss at a major since falling in 5 sets in the final at 2007 Wimbledon. Federer has won just two of their 11 previous meetings at the Grand Slams.

 

Of the pair’s 34 previous meetings, 21 have been finals. Nadal leads the head-to-head in finals 14-7.

 

Nadal leads the hard court head-to-head 9-7, and has won all 3 of their meetings at the Australian Open. As well defeating Federer in the final here in 2009, he also won their semifinal encounters in 2012 and 2014.

 

Nadal is one of just 3 active players who have had more than one career meeting with Federer to hold a winning head-to-head – the others are Djokovic (23-22) and Dominic Thiem (2-1).
Federer has a losing head-to-head against just 4 players at the Grand Slams where multiple matches have been played – Nadal, Alex Corretja (0-2), Arnaud Clement (1-2) and Djokovic (6-9).

 

Federer is aiming to win his 18th Grand Slam singles title and extend his all-time record for the most Grand Slams won. Nadal is bidding to win his 15th major title and claim sole ownership of 2nd place on the all-time list.

 

Grand Slam titles won

Roger Federer 17
Rafael Nadal

Pete Sampras

14

14

Novak Djokovic

Roy Emerson

12

12

Bjorn Borg

Rod Laver

11

11

Bill Tilden 10

 

By reaching his 6th Australian Open final, Federer has become the 2nd man in the Open Era to reach 6 Australian Open finals after Novak Djokovic. Nadal has moved into joint-5th position on the list after reaching his 4th final here.

 

                       No. of Australian Open final appearances (Open Era)

Novak Djokovic

Roger Federer

6

6

Stefan Edberg

Andy Murray

5

5

Andre Agassi

Rafael Nadal

Ivan Lendl

Mats Wilander

4

4

4

4

 

Federer is through to his 28th Grand Slam final, extending the all-time record that he took sole ownership of at 2009 Wimbledon. By reaching the final here, Nadal has tied Djokovic in 2nd place on the all-time list for most Grand Slam finals reached with 21.

 

Grand Slam finals reached (all-time)

Player No. of GS finals
Roger Federer 28
Novak Djokovic

Rafael Nadal

21

21

Ivan Lendl 19

 

Federer is looking to claim his first hard court title since defeating Nadal to win 2015 Basel and his 61st hard court title overall. He is aiming to extend his record for most hard court titles won in the Open Era. Nadal – who last won a hard court title at 2014 Doha – has won a total of 16 hard court titles, the 4th highest among active players (behind Federer, Djokovic and Murray).

Hard court title leaders (Open Era)

Player No. of hard court titles
Roger Federer

Novak Djokovic

Andre Agassi

Pete Sampras

Andy Murray

60

51

46

36

32

Active players in bold

 

This is just the 5th occasion in the Open Era that a Grand Slam final has been contested by a pair of 30-somethings. The last time 2 players aged 30 or over contested a final at a major was at the 2002 US Open when 31-year-old Pete Sampras defeated 32-year-old Andre Agassi to win the title. The last time it happened here was in 1972, when 37-year-old Ken Rosewall defeated 36-year-old Mal Anderson.

 

With 36-year-old Venus Williams and 35-year old Serena Williams contesting the women’s singles final, this is the first Grand Slam in the Open Era where all 4 singles finalists have been aged 30 or over.

 

With No. 9 Nadal and No. 17 Federer through to the final here, the winner of today’s match will be the lowest-ranked man to win the Australian Open since No. 18 Thomas Johansson won the title here in 2002.

 

Road to the Final

NADAL Time   Time FEDERER
d. Florian Mayer 63 64 64 2:04 1st round 2:06 d. (Q) Jurgen Melzer 75 36 62 62
d. Marcos Baghdatis 63 61 63 2:13 2nd round 2:03 d. (Q) Noah Rubin 75 63 76(3)
d. No. 24 Alexander Zverev 46 63 67(5) 63 62 4:06 3rd round 1:30 d. No. 10 Tomas Berdych 62 64 64
d. No. 6 Gael Monfils 63 63 46 64

d. No. 3 Milos Raonic 64 76(7) 64
d. No. 15 Grigor Dimitrov 63 57 76(5) 67(4) 64

2:56

2:44

4:56

Round of 16
Quarterfinals

Semifinals

3:24

1:32

3:05

d. No. 5 Kei Nishikori 67(4) 64 61 46 63

d. Mischa Zverev 61 75 62

d. No. 4 Stan Wawrinka 75 63 16 46 63

         
total time on court 18:59  (IBM time) 13:40 total time on court

 

NADAL                                         v                                       FEDERER

 

30                                          Age                                          35

6’1”/1.85m                                  Height                                   6’1”/1.85m

9                                    ATP Ranking                                   17

78,737,293                     Career Earnings (US$)                      98,830,819

69                                         Titles                                         88

209-31                     Career Grand Slam Record                     313-51

14 titles                       Best Grand Slam Result                      17 titles

51-10                        Australian Open Record                        86-13

814-175                              Career Record                             1086-245

389-118                        Career Record – Hard                         670-135

8-1                                   2017 Record                                   6-0

8-1                              2017 Record – Hard                              6-0

19-8                          Career Five-Set Record                         26-20

3                         Comebacks from 0-2 Down                        10

202-133                      Career Tiebreak Record                       396-216

2-2                            2017 Tiebreak Record                            1-1

 

 

  • 2009 Australian Open champion NADAL is bidding to win his 2nd Australian Open title and become the first man in the Open Era – and only the 3rd man in history – to win each of the 4 Grand Slam titles twice. Roy Emerson and Rod Laver are the only players to have won each Grand Slam on 2 or more occasions. [NB: While Laver completed the feat in 1969, some of the titles were won before the start of the Open Era.]

 

  • Nadal is bidding to win his 15th Grand Slam title and close the gap on Federer in the list of all-time Grand Slam title holders. He is currently joint-2nd with Pete Sampras on the list behind Federer (17).

 

  • Nadal is bidding to win his first Grand Slam title since 2014 Roland Garros – when he defeated Novak Djokovic in the final. This is his first appearance in a major final since then.

 

  • The Australian Open is Nadal’s 2nd most successful Grand Slam in terms of match-wins, but his least successful in terms of titles won.
     Titles won   Win-loss record     Finals reached
Australian Open   2??   51-10 4
Roland Garros   9   72-2 9
Wimbledon   2   40-9 5
US Open   2   46-10 3

 

  • This is Nadal’s 21st Grand Slam final. He has a 14-6 win-loss record in Grand Slam finals, going into today’s match:

     Nadal in Grand Slam finals

Event Result
2005 Roland Garros d. Mariano Puerta 67(6) 63 61 75
2006 Roland Garros d. Roger Federer 16 61 64 76(4)
2006 Wimbledon l. Roger Federer 60 76(5) 67(2) 63
2007 Roland Garros d. Roger Federer 63 46 63 64
2007 Wimbledon l. Roger Federer 76(7) 46 76(3) 26 62
2008 Roland Garros d. Roger Federer 61 63 60
2008 Wimbledon d. Roger Federer 64 64 67(5) 67(8) 97
2009 Australian Open d. Roger Federer 75 36 76(3) 36 62
2010 Roland Garros d. Robin Soderling 64 62 64
2010 Wimbledon d. Tomas Berdych 63 75 64
2010 US Open d. Novak Djokovic 64 57 64 62
2011 Roland Garros d. Roger Federer 75 76(3) 57 61
2011 Wimbledon l. Novak Djokovic 64 61 16 63
2011 US Open l. Novak Djokovic 62 64 67(3) 61
2012 Australian Open l. Novak Djokovic 57 64 62 67(5) 75
2012 Roland Garros d. Novak Djokovic 64 63 26 75
2013 Roland Garros d. David Ferrer 63 62 63
2013 US Open d. Novak Djokovic 62 36 64 61
2014 Australian Open l. Stan Wawrinka 63 62 36 63
2014 Roland Garros d. Novak Djokovic 36 75 62 64
2017 Australian Open v Roger Federer

 

  • Nadal is bidding to become the first No. 9 seed in the Open Era to win the Australian Open. The No. 9 seed has finished runner-up at Melbourne Park on 7 occasions – with Marat Safin the last No. 9 seed to reach the final here in 2002.

 

  • Nadal is bidding to become the first No. 9 seed to win a Grand Slam title since Jim Courier at 1991 Roland Garros. By reaching the final here, he has become the first No. 9 seed to contest a Grand Slam final since Andy Roddick fell to Federer at the 2006 US Open.

 

  • Ranked at No. 9, Nadal is bidding to become the lowest-ranked man to win the Australian Open since No. 18 Thomas Johansson won the title here in 2002. He would be the lowest-ranked man to win a Grand Slam since No. 9 Stan Wawrinka won 2015 Roland Garros.

 

  • Nadal’s best performance at the Australian Open is winning the title in 2009 (d. Federer). He also reached the final in 2012, losing to Djokovic in the longest men’s Grand Slam final on record at 5 hours, 53 minutes, and in 2014
    (l. Stan Wawrinka).

 

  • By defeating Dimitrov in Friday’s semifinals, Nadal improved his win-loss record in Grand Slam semifinals to 21-3. He has a 4-1 win-loss record in semifinals here.

 

  • By defeating Milos Raonic in the quarterfinals here, Nadal recorded his 50th Australian Open match-win and became the 4th man in the Open Era to record 50 Australian Open match-wins after Federer, Djokovic and Edberg.

 

Most Australian Open match-wins (Open Era)

Player Win-loss
Roger Federer 86-13
Novak Djokovic 58-7
Stefan Edberg 56-10
Rafael Nadal 51-10
Andre Agassi

Ivan Lendl

Andy Murray

48-5

48-10

48-12

Active players in bold.

 

  • By defeating No. 6 Gael Monfils in the round of 16 and No. 3 Raonic in the quarterfinals here, Nadal recorded back-to-back match-wins over Top 10 opposition at a Grand Slam for the first time since 2014 Roland Garros, when he defeated No. 5 David Ferrer in the quarterfinals, No. 8 Andy Murray in the last 4 and No. 2 Djokovic in the final. His win over Monfils here ended a 4-match losing streak against Top 10 players and was his first Top 10 win since he defeated No. 6 Kei Nishikori to win the title at 2016 Barcelona.

 

  • By winning 5-set matches against Zverev in the 3rd round and Dimitrov in the semifinals here, Nadal ended a 3-match losing streak in 5-set matches and improved his 5-set record to 19-8. He has a 7-3 win-loss record in 5-set matches at Melbourne Park.

 

  • Last year here Nadal lost in the 1st round for the first time in his career, falling to Fernando Verdasco in 5 sets. It was just the 2nd time that he had lost in the 1st round at a Grand Slam, having also lost his opening match at 2013 Wimbledon (l. Steve Darcis).

 

  • Elsewhere at the Grand Slams in 2016, Nadal reached the round of 16 at the US Open (l. Lucas Pouille), but gave a walkover in the 3rd round at Roland Garros and missed Wimbledon due to a left wrist injury. This is his 12th appearance at Melbourne Park and his 47th Grand Slam overall.

 

  • Away from the majors, Nadal’s best results in 2016 came during the clay court season when he won back-to-back titles at Monte Carlo-1000 (d. Monfils) and Barcelona (d. Nishikori). It was his 9th title at both events, and took his career total to 69 titles. Nadal also reached the final at Doha (l. Djokovic) and the semifinals at 5 other tournaments.

 

  • Also in 2016, Nadal won his 2nd gold medal at the Olympic Tennis Event after clinching the men’s doubles title alongside Marc Lopez at Rio 2016. He narrowly missed out on a medal in singles, falling to Nishikori 62 67(1) 63 in the bronze medal play-off.

 

  • Nadal is the only lefthander to have contested an Australian Open final since 1998 when Petr Korda defeated fellow lefthander Marcelo Rios.

 

  • Nadal is aiming to win his first hard court tournament in over 3 years. He has not won a hard court tournament since defeating Monfils to win the title at 2014 Doha. His total of 16 hard court titles is the 4th highest among active players (behind Federer, Djokovic and Murray).

 

  • Nadal warmed up for the Australian Open by reaching the quarterfinals at Brisbane (l. Raonic). It was his first tournament since October, when he lost to Viktor Troicki at Shanghai-1000, after he pulled out of Basel, Paris-1000 and the ATP World Tour Finals with a wrist injury.

 

  • At the 2010 US Open, Nadal became the 7th man in history to win all 4 Grand Slam titles. He was the 3rd-youngest in history and the youngest man in the Open Era, to do so.

 

  • Nadal has been coached by his uncle, Toni Nadal, for his entire career. He added former Australian Open finalist Carlos Moya to his team ahead of the 2017 season. His fitness trainer is Rafael Maymo.

 

  • At 35 years 174 days, FEDERER is looking to become the 2nd oldest man in the Open Era to win a Grand Slam title after Ken Rosewall, who won 3 Grand Slam titles after turning 35. Rosewall won the 1970 US Open (aged 35 years 315 days) and the Australian Open in 1971 (aged 36 years 73 days) and 1972 (aged 37 years 62 days).

 

  • Federer, who won 2012 Wimbledon aged 30 years 335 days, is looking to become the sixth man in the Open Era to win 2 or more Grand Slams titles after turning 30. Stan Wawrinka was the last man to achieve the feat, winning 2015 Roland Garros aged 30 years, 71 days and the 2016 US Open aged 31 years, 167 days.

 

Players aged over 30 to win 2 or more Grand Slams (Open Era)

Player Titles won aged over 30 Years
Rod Laver 4 1969
Ken Rosewall 4 1968, 1970, 1971, 1972
Andre Agassi 2 2001, 2003
Jimmy Connors 2 1982, 1983
Stan Wawrinka 2 2015, 2016

 

  • Federer is looking to win his 5th Australian Open title – in his first final here since 2010 – and become the 3rd man in history to win 5 Australian titles:

 

Australian Open title leaders (all-time)

Player     Titles won Years
Novak Djokovic 6 2008, 2011-13, 2015-16
Roy Emerson 6 1961, 1963-67
Andre Agassi 4 1995, 2000-01, 2003
Jack Crawford 4 1931-33, 1935
Roger Federer 4 2004, 2006-07, 2010

 

  • Federer is bidding to win his 18th Grand Slam title and tie Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova in equal 5th place on the all-time list for most Grand Slam singles titles by a man or woman.

All-time Grand Slam singles title leaders (men and women)

Rank Player No. of titles
1. Margaret Court 24
2. Serena Williams 23??*
3. Steffi Graf 22
4. Helen Wills Moody 19
5= Chris Evert

Roger Federer??

Martina Navratilova

18

18??
18

*Serena Williams could win her 23rd Grand Slam title if she wins the title here. Written prior to Saturday’s women’s final.

 

  • Federer has a 17-10 record in Grand Slam finals, going into today’s match:

 

Federer in Grand Slam finals

Event Result
2003 Wimbledon d. Mark Philippoussis 76(5) 62 76(3)
2004 Australian Open d. Marat Safin 76(3) 64 62
2004 Wimbledon d. Andy Roddick 46 75 76(3) 64
2004 US Open d. Lleyton Hewitt 60 76(3) 60
2005 Wimbledon d. Andy Roddick 62 76(2) 64
2005 US Open d. Andre Agassi 63 26 76(1) 61
2006 Australian Open d. Marcos Baghdatis 57 75 60 62
2006 Roland Garros l. Rafael Nadal 16 61 64 76(4)
2006 Wimbledon d. Rafael Nadal 60 76(5) 67(2) 63
2006 US Open d. Andy Roddick 62 46 75 61
2007 Australian Open d. Fernando Gonzalez 76(2) 64 64
2007 Roland Garros l. Rafael Nadal 63 46 63 64
2007 Wimbledon d. Rafael Nadal 76(7) 46 76(3) 26 62
2007 US Open d. Novak Djokovic 76(4) 76(2) 64
2008 Roland Garros l. Rafael Nadal 61 63 60
2008 Wimbledon l. Rafael Nadal 64 64 67(5) 67(8) 97
2008 US Open d. Andy Murray 62 75 62
2009 Australian Open l. Rafael Nadal 75 36 76(3) 36 62
2009 Roland Garros d. Robin Soderling 61 76(1) 64
2009 Wimbledon d. Andy Roddick 57 76(6) 76(5) 36 1614
2009 US Open l. Juan Martin del Potro 36 76(5) 46 76(4) 62
2010 Australian Open d. Andy Murray 63 64 76(11)
2011 Roland Garros l. Rafael Nadal 75 76(3) 57 61
2012 Wimbledon d. Andy Murray 46 75 63 64
2014 Wimbledon l. Novak Djokovic 67(7) 64 76(4) 57 64
2015 Wimbledon l. Novak Djokovic 76(1) 67(10) 64 63
2015 US Open l. Novak Djokovic 64 57 64 64
2017 Australian Open v. Rafael Nadal

 

  • Federer is contesting his 100th match at the Australian Open today. Jimmy Connors is the only other man to have played 100 matches at one Grand Slam event in the Open Era – at both Wimbledon (102) and the US Open (115). Federer has played 95 matches at Wimbledon, 89 at the US Open and 81 at Roland Garros.

 

  • Ranked No. 17, Federer is bidding to become the lowest-ranked man to win the Australian Open since No. 18 Thomas Johansson won the title here in 2002. He would be the lowest-ranked man to win any Grand Slam since No. 44 Gaston Gaudio won 2004 Roland Garros. By reaching the final here, he has become the lowest-ranked man to reach the Australian Open final since No. 38 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in 2008. He is the lowest-ranked man to reach any Grand Slam final since No. 25 Robin Soderling at 2009 Roland Garros.

 

  • Federer is bidding to become the first No. 17 seed to win a Grand Slam title since Pete Sampras won the title as No. 17 seed at the 2002 US Open. Sampras was also the last No. 17 seed to reach a Grand Slam final.

 

  • By reaching the final here aged 35 years 174 days, Federer has become the oldest man to reach a Grand Slam final since Ken Rosewall (39 years 310 days) at the 1974 US Open.

 

  • By reaching the final here aged 35 years 174 days, Federer has become the 3rd different man in the Open Era to reach the Australian Open final aged 35 or over. He is the 4th oldest Australian Open finalist overall:

 

                                              Oldest men to reach Australian Open final (Open Era)

Age Player Year
37 years 62 days Ken Rosewall 1972
36 years 306 days Mal Anderson 1972
36 years 73 days Ken Rosewall 1971
35 years 174 days Roger Federer 2017

NB Player ages are calculated at the end of the tournament

 

  • The Australian Open is Federer’s most successful Grand Slam event in terms of matches won. He has an 86-13 win-loss record here:

 

  Titles won Win-loss record Finals reached
Australian Open 5?? 86-13 6
Roland Garros 1 65-16 5
Wimbledon 7 84-11 10
US Open 5 78-11 7

 

  • By winning 5-set matches against both Kei Nishikori and Stan Wawrinka here, Federer improved his career 5-set win-loss record to 26-20. He has a 7-5 win-loss record in 5-set matches at the Australian Open.

 

  • By defeating No. 10 Tomas Berdych, No. 5 Nishikori and No. 4 Wawrinka here, Federer has recorded consecutive match-wins against Top 10 opposition for the first time since he recorded 4 straight wins against Top 10 opponents at the 2015 ATP World Tour Finals.
  • Federer played just 7 Tour-level events in 2016 after injuring his knee the day after his Australian Open semifinal. He underwent arthroscopic knee surgery to repair a torn meniscus on 2 February and withdrew from tournaments at Rotterdam and Dubai. He returned with a quarterfinal finish at Monte Carlo-1000 (l. Tsonga) but, despite playing 4 further tournaments, announced on 26 July that he would miss the rest of the season, including the Olympic Games in Rio, due to the knee injury.

 

  • Federer dropped out of the world’s Top 10 for the first time in 734 weeks (over 14 years) in November 2016 and did not qualify for the ATP World Tour Finals for the first time since 2001. He plays here ranked No. 17 – his lowest position since May 2001.

 

  • Federer made his comeback from injury at the 2017 Hopman Cup, defeating Daniel Evans 63 64 and Richard Gasquet 61 64, but losing to Alexander Zverev 76(1) 67(4) 76(4).

 

  • In Grand Slam play in 2016, Federer reached the semifinals at both the Australian Open (l. Djokovic) and Wimbledon (l. Milos Raonic), where he saved 3 match points to recover from 0-2 down and defeat Marin Cilic in the quarterfinals. It was his 10th career-comeback from 0-2 down, equalling Aaron Krickstein and Boris Becker’s record for the most career comebacks from 0-2 down. He withdrew from Roland Garros, ending his record streak of 65 Grand Slam appearances, with a back injury.

 

  • Elsewhere in 2016, Federer finished runner-up at Brisbane (l. Raonic). He also reached back-to-back semifinals at Stuttgart (l. Dominic Thiem) and Halle (l. Alexander Zverev) and the 3rd round at Rome-1000 (l. Thiem). He failed to win a title during a season for the first time since winning his first at 2001 Milan.

 

  • This is Federer’s 69th major appearance. He is in 2nd place on the list for the most Grand Slams played in the Open Era behind Fabrice Santoro (70) [see Preview page 5].

 

  • Federer is a 17-time Grand Slam singles champion. His last title at a major came at 2012 Wimbledon
    (d. Murray).

 

  • Federer is coached by 2006 Australian Open quarterfinalist Ivan Ljubicic, and Severin Luthi.

 

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Rafael Nadal Defeats Grigor Dimitrov in Five Sets to Face Roger Federer in Australian Open Final

(January 27, 2017) Rafael Nadal defeated 15th seed Grigor Dimitrov 6-3, 5-7, 7-6(5), 6-7(4), 6-4 in four hours and 56 minutes to reach his fourth Australian Open final and 21st major final of his career. The ninth-seeded Spaniard will face Roger Federer for the title on Sunday. Nadal will be seeking his second title in Melbourne. He owns a 23-11 career record against Federer and is 6-2 against Federer in major finals. Should Nadal win the final he will join an exclusive club of players winning all four majors at least twice. Only Rod Laver and Roy Emerson have done this.

“Is special play with Roger again in a final of a Grand Slam,” said the 30-year-old Nadal of his 35-year-old rival. “I cannot lie. Is great. Is exciting for me and for both of us that we still there and we still fighting for important events. So that’s important for us, I think. That’s very special.

“After that, you know, is a final. Is a very important match for both of us. I hope to be ready to compete well again. I need to go back to the hotel, to rest well, and to recover from now.”

In the first set the 14-time major winner broke the Bulgarian’s serve in the fourth game to get control of the set. Nadal hit eight winners to only two unforced errors, winning 91 percent of his points on his first serves in the set.

The second set saw Dimitrov break Nadal in the fourth game, with a chance to serve out the set at 5-3. Nadal broke back and staved off four set points against him in the 10th game. The No. 15th seed held and broke Nadal in the 12th game to capture the set 7-5.

Dimitrov broke Nadal’s serve three times in the set, hitting 14 winners to 14 unforced errors.

Nadal went ahead by capturing the third set as both men exchanged breaks in the fifth and sixth games. There was a delay before the eleventh game of the match due to a medical emergency with a spectator. Nadal won the tiebreak 7-5. The Spaniard was a perfect 6 for 6 on points won at the net

Both men stayed even in the fourth set, with no breaks of serve. In the tiebreak, Dimitrov took a 5-2 lead and never looked back, capturing the tiebreak 7-4.

In the opening game of the fifth set Dimitrov fought off three break points to hold serve. Nadal saved a break point in the second game, but held for 1-1. Dimitrov saved a break point in the fifth game to hold for 3-2.

In the eighth game, with Nadal serving at 3-4, the 2009 champion battled back from 15-40 to hold for 4-4.

At 4-4 double fault put Dimitrov in the hole at 0-30. He won the next two points for 30-30, but Nadal broke him at 30 to serve for a place in the final.

Nadal won the match on his third match point.

“I think Grigor played great,” Nadal said in his news conference. “I played great. So was a great quality of tennis tonight. So just for me, is amazing to be through to a final of Grand Slam again here in Australia at the first of the year. Means a lot to me. I feel the love of the people here. They give me a lot of positive energy.

“Just I think I feel very happy to be part of this match, no? Arrive moment in the fifth set that for sure I wanted to win. I say to myself, I am giving my best, I am playing very well. If I lose, that’s it. Grigor deserves, too.

“I think both of us deserve to be in that final. Was a great fight. Finally was me. I feel lucky. I am very happy for that.”

 

More to follow……

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Australian Open Day 12 Schedule of Play for January 27, 2017

Australian Open Day 12 Schedule of Play for January 27 2017

ROD LAVER ARENA 3:00 PM

Mixed Doubles – Semifinals
Samantha Stosur(AUS) /Sam Groth(AUS) vs. Sania Mirza (IND) [2]/Ivan Dodig (CRO) [2]
Not Before: 4:00 PM
Women’s Doubles – Final
Andrea Hlavackova (CZE) [12]/Shuai Peng (CHN) [12] vs. Bethanie Mattek-Sands (USA) [2]/Lucie Safarova (CZE) [2]

Not Before: 7:30 PM
Men’s Singles – Semifinals
Rafael Nadal (ESP) [9] vs. Grigor Dimitrov (BUL) [15]

MARGARET COURT ARENA 3:00 PM

Junior Boys’ Singles – Semifinals
Yibing Wu (CHN) [1] vs. Yshai Oliel (ISR) [4]
Mixed Doubles – Semifinals
Elina Svitolina (UKR)/Chris Guccione (AUS) vs. Abigail Spears (USA)/Juan Sebastian Cabal (COL)

Men’s Legends’ Doubles
Wayne Arthurs (AUS)/Richard Fromberg (AUS) vs. Michael Chang (USA)/Todd Martin (USA)

SHOW COURT 3 3:00 PM

Junior Girls’ Singles – Semifinals
Rebeka Masarova (SUI) [1] vs. Bianca Vanessa Andreescu (CAN) [7]
Junior Boys’ Singles – Semifinals
Corentin Moutet (FRA) [5] vs. Zsombor Piros (HUN) [15]
Junior Boys’ Doubles – Final
Finn Reynolds (NZL)/Duarte Vale (POR) vs. Yu Hsiou Hsu (TPE) [4]/Lingxi Zhao (CHN) [4]

COURT 5 3:00 PM

Junior Girls’ Singles – Semifinals
Marta Kostyuk (UKR) [11] vs. Elena Rybakina (RUS) [16]
Quad Wheelchair Singles
Heath Davidson (AUS) vs. Andy Lapthorne (GBR)
Junior Girls’ Doubles – Final
Bianca Vanessa Andreescu (CAN) [3]/Carson Branstine (USA) [3] vs. Maja Chwalinska (POL)/Iga Swiatek (POL)

COURT 7 3:00 PM

Quad Wheelchair Singles
Dylan Alcott (AUS) [1] vs. David Wagner (USA) [2]
Men’s Wheelchair Doubles – Final
Gustavo Fernandez (ARG)/Alfie Hewett (GBR) vs. Joachim Gerard (BEL) [2]/Gordon Reid (GBR) [2]
Women’s Wheelchair Doubles – Final
Jiske Griffioen (NED) [1]/Aniek Van Koot (NED) [1] vs. Diede De Groot (NED) [2]/Yui Kamiji (JPN) [2]

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Roger Federer Reaches His Sixth Australian Open Final

 

Roger Federer

(January 26, 2017) No. 17 seed Roger Federer defeated fellow Swiss Stan Wawrinka 7-5, 6-3, 1-6, 4-6, 6-3 to reach his sixth Australian Open final and 28th major final on Thursday.

At 35-years old, the 17-time major winner has become the oldest man to reach a major final since 39-year-old Ken Rosewall did it at the 1974 U.S. Open.

Federer will be going for his 18th major title on Sunday against the winner of the Rafael Nadal – Grigor Dimitrov semifinal which will be played on Friday night.

Federer’s last major championship came when he captured the 2012 Wimbledon title. Since then his countryman, Wawrinka has won three major titles – 2014 Australian Open, 2015 French Open and the 2016 U.S. Open.

Federer injured his knee after last year’s Australian Open, had surgery and returned to the tour. After Federer lost in the semifinals of Wimbledon, he called it quits for the season to rehabilitate his knee. This is his first major since his layoff.

Federer won the first two sets and looked to have the momentum all in his favor.

Warwinka’s frustration showed when in the second set when he broke his racquet over his knee.

At the end of the second set, Wawrinka took a medical time out to get tape under his right knee. After the first couple of games in the third set, the 31-year-old came back with a new determination which saw him dominate the next two sets.

After the fourth set Federer took a medical time out for a leg injury.

 

Stan Wawrinka

Each man saved multiple break points in the early part of the fifth set, but Federer converted in the sixth game and held the rest of the way to close out the match.

 

“I felt like everything happened so quickly,” Federer said after the match. “It feels amazing. I never, ever in my wildest dreams thought I was going to be coming this far here in Australia. It’s beautiful.”

 

“In the fifth, I just knew I had to find my energy again,” Federer said. Play with intensity, play more aggressive, take the ball early, believe in myself, serve good, try not to get in too many tough moments early on, which then I did.

 

“It was an awkward match. Always against Stan, it was always never going to be easy. Especially how the third and fourth set went by, I needed to react really, because he had the upper hand from the baseline.

 

“I thought it was going to be tough in the fifth. I think he gave me a cheap break in the fifth. After that, I never looked back.

 

“I’m happy with my attitude in the fifth. So I’m very pleased, of course.”

 

“I cannot just be happy to win two sets against Roger,” Wawrinka said. “I just lost a five-set match in semifinal of Australian Open.
“I never think about the past or what I did before. I’m proud of myself, of the fight I give tonight and all the tournament. I think there is a lot of positive from this tournament, from Brisbane, from the month already.

 

“For sure I’m really sad and disappointed with a loss like that because to be that close to have won a semifinal, it can be only sad.
“But at the end I know I tried everything on the court. I came from two sets down. I change completely the momentum. I start to be extra aggressive because I had to change few things also physically. So I change my game with that.

 

“At the end I had a great battle against Roger. He’s great fighter. He’s always been amazing in Grand Slam, in five-set match. I’m for sure sad to lose a match like that.

“But, yeah, I know there is a lot of positive.”

Federer on possibly playing Dimitrov in the final: “If going in, he’s easier because I don’t think I’ve ever lost to him. There you have it. But that doesn’t buy me anything. That doesn’t give me the trophy.

“I think he’s playing totally different now to how he was playing 12 months ago when I beat him in Brisbane and here back-to-back. I think he’s got the confidence. Like I said, you never want to play a guy with confidence because he believes he can rip trees out, you feel like Superman for a second. Rightfully so, he worked super hard. He probably believes he’s worked harder than anybody right now.

“I think he has a legit shot against Rafa. If he won that, then clearly also against me. I think he’s doing a nice job with his game right now. He’s cleaned it up nicely. He came from a tough place.

“I’ve given him some advice, too, because he came to me last year at some point. He was having all sorts of issues. We were just having a simple conversation. I’m happy he took some things onboard. He seemed to turn it around somehow. I’m really happy for him.

“Now if the match were to come up, I know I have to play a good match because he does present different things. He brings different things to the table because of the way he plays. Not many guys can do what he can do. He might be similar to me, but I was similar to Pete, too. I always told people, I’m not Pete Sampras. He’s not me. He is his own guy. He’s his own identity. Different character. Just because he played with Nike and Wilson like I did with Sampras doesn’t make us in any way the same. I think you got to give him that, please.”

 

“I just think he’s an incredible tennis player,” Federer said of Nadal. “He’s got shots that no other one has. When you have that, you are unique and special. Plus he’s got the grit. He’s got the mental and physical ability to sustain a super high level of play for years and for hours and for weeks. He’s proven that time and time again. He’s come back from many injuries, you know, time and time again. He made it seem easy, and it’s not.

“I think he’s been tremendous for the game. I have a lot of respect for him on many levels.”

 

“I’m in the finals, I know that. I know I will have a chance to win on Sunday now,” Federer said. “That’s a great position to be in. Regardless of who it’s going to be against, I think it’s going to be special either way. One is going to go for his first slam or it’s the epic battle with Rafa.

 

“All I care about is that I can win on Sunday. Doesn’t matter who’s across the net. But I understand the magnitude of the match against Nadal, no doubt about it.”

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An All-Williams Australian Open Final as Serena Beats Lucic-Baroni

 

(January 26, 2017) It will be the ninth all-Williams final for a major title on Saturday night. Serena Williams joined her sister Venus in the Australia Open final by easily defeating Mirjana Lucic-Baroni 6-2, 6-1 in fifty minutes to reach her eighth final in Melbourne.

“It felt really good because I felt like it was in my hands to force this Williams final,” Serena told media. “Believe it or not, I was feeling a little pressure about that, but it felt really good to get that win.”
“She’s my toughest opponent – nobody has ever beaten me as much as Venus has,” Serena Williams said about the match-up in her on-court interview. “I just feel like no matter what happens, we’ve won.”
“She’s been through a lot, I’ve been through a lot. To see her do so well it’s great. I look forward to it. A Williams is going to win this tournament.”

Serena will be attempting to make history on Saturday, trying to win her 23rd major, which would be an Open Era record. Should she win the title, she would also retake the No. 1 ranking, jumping over Angelique Kerber.

Serena holds a 16-11 record against her older sister Venus. She also leads her sister head-to-head in major finals 6-2.

“Obviously I was really proud of Venus, a total inspiration, my big sister,” Serena said. “She’s basically my world and my life. She means everything to me. I was so happy for her. For us both to be in the final is the biggest dream come true for us.”

“After everything that Venus has been through with her illness and stuff, I just can’t help but feel like it’s a win-win situation for me,” she said. “I was there for the whole time. We lived together. I know what she went through.

“It’s the one time that I really genuinely feel like no matter what happens, I can’t lose, she can’t lose. It’s going to be a great situation.”

It will be a battle of the thirty-somethings when 36-year-old Venus faces off against 35-year-old Serena.

More to follow…..

 

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Venus Williams Reaches Australian Open Final, Her First Major Final Since 2009

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Venus Williams Reaches Australian Open Final, Her First Major Final Since 2009

Venus Williams

(January 26, 2017) Playing in her 21st major semifinal, the seven-time major winner Venus Williams advanced to her first Australian Open final since 2003, when she beat her American countrywoman CoCo Vandeweghe 6-7(3), 6-2, 6-3.

The last major final in which Williams competed was in 2009 at Wimbledon when she lost to her sister Serena.

At 36-years-old, the No. 13 seed will be the oldest female major tournament finalist in the Open Era.

The 25-year-old Vandeweghe, playing in her first major final four, opened the match with a break of serve, which Williams returned the favor in the next game. Both women held on to their serves to reach the tie break in which the younger American Vandeweghe dominated.

Vandeweghe reached the semifinals with back-to-back victories over reigning major tournament winners – in the round of 16 she took down No. 1 seed and Australian Open defending champion Angelique Kerber and in the quarterfinals she stopped French Open winner Garbine Muguruza.

“The way she’s been playing this tournament, it’s like knock-out, not missing, just playing beautifully,” Williams said. “Unless the nerves get to you or you just have a bad day, I had to expect that she was going to be able to execute that once again, and she did.”

CoCo Vandeweghe

“I mean, to be honest, the way she was playing the match, it was like I was just going to have to play defense, try to play offense whenever I had an opportunity,” Williams said.

“I want to dictate, but the way she was playing, it was almost impossible to do so. So it was just about trying to control the point in whichever way that was. If that meant that defensively I controlled the point, or I was able to get a little offense, whatever it was.

“I mean, just be the one winning the point at the end somehow.”

In the second set, Williams broke Vandeweghe to take a 2-1 lead, then broke her again to go up 4-1 when Vandeweghe hit two double-faults in a row.

Vandeweghe then had four break chances in the sixth game but could not convert.

Williams leveled the match winning the second set 6-2.

Williams opened the third set with a break. In her next game, she had to fight off two break points to hold for 2-0. Williams ended the match by breaking her opponents serve in the ninth game.

 

Williams hit 30 winners against 35 errors  with 11 aces. Vandeweghe had 37 winners, 50 errors, 10 aces and 11 double-faults. A key statistic for Vandeweghe was failing to convert on break points – she was 1 for 13.

“Everyone has their moment in the sun,” Venus said in her on-court interview. “Maybe mine has gone on a while. I’d like to keep that going. I’ve got nothing else to do.”

Venus Williams will play her sister Serena, ranked No. 2-ranked in the final.

Venus was asked about possibly playing her sister Serena in the finals: “I would more than anything love to see her across the net from me on Saturday.”

“I think Venus is an unbelievable competitor,” Vandeweghe said. “Putting age aside, age is just a number. For her to be the great champion that she is is a great accomplishment. It doesn’t matter if she’s 36 or 18 or anything like that.

“For me, I appreciate her as an athlete, as a competitor, as well as I would probably be feeling joy and glee if I had won the match today.

“I think it shows kind of the human aspect of sports. I think that’s a very important factor that sometimes gets pushed to the side. We’re all human. We’re not perfect out there. We’re going to have some screw-ups. You’re also kind of watching us have our high moments and low moments, as well.

“I think it’s great for her to make a final. To have an American in the final is a great achievement for American tennis. Hopefully Serena makes it there, as well, so we can have two Americans into the final.”

Venus was asked about her post-match celebration: “I know, that moment was just joy,” she said. “It was a heartfelt match. If the match is 6-2, 6-2, you know, the moment is kind of clear that it’s going to happen. But she played so well. There was never a moment where she wasn’t just hitting the ball amazing and striking the ball with just such precision.

“It’s always very satisfying to be able to get through in such a big match against an opponent who was just on fire.”

Venus talked about how she will play the final: “Honestly, I probably just need to continue playing like I’m playing. I haven’t played badly. I lost a set today. I was not happy about it. But my opponent deserved that set. So what else could I do? Try to get the next two.

“I will try to do the same.”

“At the end of the day, my main goal will be to execute my game. I’ve had to do that in the first round. I had to do it in this round. In the final, too.

“If I can achieve that, that’s more or less what I’ll be thinking of, not necessarily that it’s the final. Of course, you think of that, too. I mean, that’s normal. But if you’re especially mentally strong, you can block that out, too, so I’ll try.”

What would winning the final mean to Venus: “It would be beautiful. It would be beautiful. I have to earn it, so… It’s not a given. I’m going to do what I can to earn it. I’m not thinking about, Oh, what would it be like to win? I’m thinking about, What do I have to do to earn that? That’s my mentality right now.

“I’m so excited after that last match. But my mind changes over quickly into what’s at stake next, so that’s where I am.”

 

Related Articles:

An All-Williams Australian Open Final as Serena Beats Lucic-Baroni

Thirty-Somethings Serena Williams and Mirjana Lucic-Baroni to meet in Australian Open Semifinal

Venus Williams Reaches Australian Open Semifinals

 

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Australian Open Day 11 Schedule of Play for January 26, 2017

Australian Open Day 11 Schedule of Play for January 26, 2017

ROD LAVER ARENA 11:00 AM

Men’s Doubles – Semifinals
Bob Bryan (USA) [3]/Mike Bryan (USA) [3] vs. Pablo Carreno Busta (ESP)/Guillermo Garcia-Lopez (ESP)
Not Before: 2:00 PM
Women’s Singles – Semifinals
CoCo Vandeweghe (USA) vs. Venus Williams (USA) [13]
Women’s Singles – Semifinals
Mirjana Lucic-Baroni (CRO) vs. Serena Williams (USA) [2]
ROD LAVER ARENA 7:00 PM

AUSTRALIA DAY CEREMONY

Not Before: 7:30 PM
Men’s Singles – Semifinals
Roger Federer (SUI) [17] vs. Stan Wawrinka (SUI) [4]

Men’s Legends’ Doubles
Pat Cash (AUS)/Goran Ivanisevic (CRO) vs. John McEnroe (USA)/Patrick McEnroe (USA)

MARGARET COURT ARENA 11:00 AM

Junior Girls’ Singles – Quarterfinals
Rebeka Masarova (SUI) [1] vs. Mai Hontama (JPN) [10]

Men’s Legends’ Doubles
Wayne Arthurs (AUS)/Richard Fromberg (AUS) vs. Wayne Ferreira (RSA)/Henri Leconte (FRA)
Men’s Legends’ Doubles
Thomas Johansson (SWE)/Todd Woodbridge (AUS) vs. Mansour Bahrami (FRA)/Fabrice Santoro (FRA)

Not Before: 4:00 PM
Men’s Doubles – Semifinals
Marc Polmans (AUS)/Andrew Whittington (AUS) vs. Henri Kontinen (FIN)[4] /John Peers(AUS)[4] or Sam Groth(AUS) /Chris Guccione(AUS)

SHOW COURT 3 11:00 AM

Junior Boys’ Singles – Quarterfinals
Yibing Wu (CHN) [1] vs. Alexey Zakharov (RUS)
Junior Boys’ Singles – Quarterfinals
Matteo Martineau (FRA) vs. Zsombor Piros (HUN) [15]
Junior Girls’ Singles – Quarterfinals
Marta Kostyuk (UKR) [11] vs. En Shuo Liang (TPE)
Junior Boys’ Doubles – Semifinals
Toru Horie (JPN) [1]/Yibing Wu (CHN) [1] vs. Finn Reynolds (NZL)/Duarte Vale (POR)

COURT 5 11:00 AM

Men’s Wheelchair Singles – Semifinals
Joachim Gerard (BEL) vs. Nicolas Peifer (FRA)
Quad Wheelchair Singles
Heath Davidson (AUS) vs. David Wagner (USA) [2]
Junior Boys’ Singles – Quarterfinals
Corentin Moutet (FRA) [5] vs. Emil Ruusuvuori (FIN)
Junior Girls’ Doubles – Semifinals
Maja Chwalinska (POL)/Iga Swiatek (POL) vs. Anri Nagata (JPN)/Thasaporn Naklo (THA)

COURT 7 11:00 AM

Women’s Wheelchair Singles – Semifinals
Jiske Griffioen (NED) [1] vs. Sabine Ellerbrock (GER)
Women’s Wheelchair Singles – Semifinals
Lucy Shuker (GBR) vs. Yui Kamiji (JPN) [2]
Men’s Wheelchair Doubles – Semifinals
Maikel Scheffers (NED)/Ben Weekes (AUS) vs. Joachim Gerard (BEL) [2]/Gordon Reid (GBR) [2]
Women’s Wheelchair Doubles – Semifinals
Jiske Griffioen (NED) [1]/Aniek Van Koot (NED) [1] vs. Marjolein Buis (NED)/Lucy Shuker (GBR)
Junior Boys’ Doubles – Semifinals
Yu Hsiou Hsu (TPE) [4]/Lingxi Zhao (CHN) [4] vs. Alexei Popyrin (AUS) [5]/Kacper Zuk (POL) [5]

COURT 8 11:00 AM

Men’s Wheelchair Singles – Semifinals
Gustavo Fernandez (ARG) vs. Stephane Houdet (FRA) [2]
Quad Wheelchair Singles
Dylan Alcott (AUS) [1] vs. Andy Lapthorne (GBR)
Men’s Wheelchair Doubles – Semifinals
Stephane Houdet (FRA) [1]/Nicolas Peifer (FRA) [1] vs. Gustavo Fernandez (ARG)/Alfie Hewett (GBR)
Women’s Wheelchair Doubles – Semifinals
Sabine Ellerbrock (GER)/Katharina Kruger (GER) vs. Diede De Groot (NED) [2]/Yui Kamiji (JPN) [2]
Quad Wheelchair Doubles – Final
Andy Lapthorne (GBR) [1]/David Wagner (USA) [1] vs. Dylan Alcott (AUS) [2]/Heath Davidson (AUS) [2]

COURT 10 11:00 AM

Junior Girls’ Singles – Quarterfinals
Emily Appleton (GBR) [4] vs. Bianca Vanessa Andreescu (CAN) [7]
Junior Boys’ Singles – Quarterfinals
Yshai Oliel (ISR) [4] vs. Menelaos Efstathiou (CYP)
Junior Girls’ Singles – Quarterfinals
Zeel Desai (IND) vs. Elena Rybakina (RUS) [16]
Junior Girls’ Doubles – Semifinals
Caty McNally (USA) [5]/Natasha Subhash (USA) [5] vs. Bianca Vanessa Andreescu (CAN) [3]/Carson Branstine (USA) [3]

TBA
5:00 PM
Not Before: 5:00 PM
Mixed Doubles – Quarterfinals
Bethanie Mattek-Sands (USA) [1]/Mike Bryan (USA) [1] vs. Elina Svitolina (UKR)/Chris Guccione (AUS)
Not Before: 5:00 PM
Mixed Doubles – Quarterfinals
Martina Hingis (SUI)/Leander Paes (IND) vs. Samantha Stosur (AUS)/Sam Groth (AUS)

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