2015/01/25

Federer Needs Four Sets to Advance to Australian Open Third Round

Federer fistpump

(January 21, 2015) No. 2 Roger Federer rebounded from dropping his first-ever set to Simone Bolelli, and medical time out for a on his sore right pinky finger, before winning his second round match in Melbourne 3-6, 6-3, 6-2, 6-2 to reach the third round of the Australian Open.

“It felt like a bee stung me” said the Swiss. “I was like `This can’t be possible – I never had this pain before.’ It was disturbing me. I knew that to tape it wasn’t an option.”

Bolelli came out swinging, jumping out to a 4-1 lead over the 4-time Australian Open champion. The Italian captured his first-ever set against Federer.

“Well, I thought he played two really good sets against me in Davis Cup, so I felt like he was really, you know, imposing his strength at the baseline,” said in regard to playing the world No. 48. I could sense there that he had a good forehand; committed, you know, on the return; solid backhand with the option to hit the slice. I wasn’t that surprised, to be honest, you know. I was just surprised how well, how consistently he was doing that, and especially how well he was serving actually. But then again, conditions were fast, which made it easier to serve well and harder to return. Maybe the break, I shouldn’t be broken, but he was really playing very well from the baseline. I guess in these conditions sometimes a break can be a set. That’s when I was under pressure for a while in the second set, but I’m happy I fought my way out of it.

Federer his 36 winners to 23 unforced errors, winning a total of 115 points in the match which lasted two hours and nine minutes.

“It’s always a good feeling fighting your way out of a match,” said the 33-year-old, “like now, and winning the last three sets convincingly and actually playing really positive tennis. I served very well. So, you know, important is that you play the right way early because it’s not always that easy. Today I had to do some adjustments because he was doing things very well. By figuring things out, it’s a great feeling to have once you’ve got it. Then you’re able to play consistently well, because actually he didn’t have many opportunities on my serve. You always expect yourself to create opportunities, which I was finally able to do. Conditions were playing fast, and it’s not so easy if you serve well to break.”
Federer will get another Italian in the third round –  Andreas Seppi. Federer has upped his career match win total to 1002.

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Murray in a Hurry Quickly Advances to Australian Open Third Round

(January 21, 2014) Andy Murray extended his record against Australians to 10-0 by taking down Marinko Matosevic 6-1, 6-3, 6-2 to advance to the third round of the Australian Open on Wednesday.

“I think he fought hard up until the end,” Murray said. Obviously after a tough start for him, he definitely hung in, you know, went a couple of breaks up in the second set. He came back, you know, made it tight sort of end of the second set. You know, there was a lot of long, close games. Even the third set, as well. I just said to him that he fought well. Yeah, he wished me luck. There’s not loads you say at the net straight after a match. There’s only a few seconds.

Murray, who is friends with Matosevic, commented about playing in front of the partisan Australian crowd.

“It was a fun atmosphere to play today. Even if not everyone was supporting me.”

Commenting on her perfect record against Australians, Murray said “I’m sure I won’t be able to hold on to the record with the fantastic players you’ve coming through”

“I played well today,” the Scot said. “The conditions change the way the court plays significantly. It bounces a lot higher. Using variety, using higher balls, you get a lot of success with that; whereas when it’s very cold you don’t get so much success with it. So when the temperature’s like this, I quite like it.”

The three-time Australian Open finalist won the match in 102 minutes with 21 winners and only 12 unforced errors.

The World No. 6 will play Portugal’s Joao Sousa in the third round. Sousa led 4-6, 7-6(4), 6-4, 1-0 when No. 32 seed Martin Klizan retired from the match.

More to follow

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Maria Sharapova Survives Two Match Points to Advance at Australian Open

(January 21, 2015) Maria Sharapova escaped two match points in a win over against No. 150 qualifier Alexandra Panova in the second round of the Australian Open on Wednesday, The world No 2 survived to advance 6-1, 4-6, 7-5.

Sharapova rallied in the final set, trailing 1-4, down two service breaks and two match points. Panova served for the match at 5-4 in the third.

“I was one point away twice today from going out of the tournament,” the Russian said on court after the match. “She played a pretty inspired match.”

“I wasn’t playing my best but it was good enough to get through.”

Playing high-risk tennis Sharapova hit 51 unforced errors to just 38 winners but won 104 total points to Panova’s 83. The 2008 Australian Open winner won 67% of her first serve points.

“I thought my thought process through the match to that point was pretty negative, ” Sharapova said. “I think I was dwelling too much on my mistakes, what I was doing wrong, not really being in the present, something that I’m really usually good at. At that point when you’re behind and you feel like you’re making a lot of errors, you don’t feel like you have a good rhythm out there, I just really tried to take it a point at a time, think positively, and change my thought process a little bit. When other things aren’t working, maybe the mental side of things will help you out. I think in the end maybe that’s what did.”

“I just had to win just another point or something,” Panova said. “She came up with a good shots, with the winners. What could I do? I should played even better or something to keep the momentum. She’s a great fighter. She’s a great champion. To take it from her, you really need some extra.”

“I was down two breaks in the third,” Sharapova added. “I mean, the only belief I had was just try to get into the rallies. She served some really good games out there where I didn’t have much chances. When I did, I thought I could put a little more thought into her mind, get those first serves back. I think that was really important. You know, I think she became a little bit more tentative in that last game. Of course, based on experience, you lift yourself up both mentally and physically.”

AUSTRALIAN – MELBOURNE, AUS
$15,561,973.00
19-31 JANUARY, 2015

Results – Wednesday, January 21, 2015
Singles – Second Round
(2) Maria Sharapova (RUS) d. (Q) Alexandra Panova (RUS) 61 46 75
(3) Simona Halep (ROU) d. Jarmila Gajdosova (AUS) 62 62
(7) Eugenie Bouchard (CAN) d. Kiki Bertens (NED) 60 63
(10) Ekaterina Makarova (RUS) d. Roberta Vinci (ITA) 62 64
(14) Sara Errani (ITA) d. Sílvia Soler-Espinosa (ESP) 76(3) 63
(21) Peng Shuai (CHN) d. Magdalena Rybarikova (SVK) 61 61
(22) Karolina Pliskova (CZE) d. (WC) Océane Dodin (FRA) 75 57 64
(31) Zarina Diyas (KAZ) d. Anna Schmiedlova (SVK) 36 62 86
Caroline Garcia (FRA) d. Stefanie Voegele (SUI) 63 64
Irina-Camelia Begu (ROU) d. Katerina Siniakova (CZE) 75 64
Yaroslava Shvedova (KAZ) d. Monica Puig (PUR) 62 76(6)
Julia Goerges (GER) d. Klara Koukalova (CZE) 63 46 62
Yanina Wickmayer (BEL) d. Lara Arruabarrena (ESP) 64 46 64
Carina Witthoeft (GER) d. Christina McHale (USA) 63 60
Bethanie Mattek-Sands (USA) d. Kristina Mladenovic (FRA) 76(3) 76(6)
(Q) Lucie Hradecka (CZE) d. Polona Hercog (SLO) 46 63 62

Doubles – First Round
(2) Hsieh/Mirza (TPE/IND) d. Irigoyen/Oprandi (ARG/SUI) 62 60
(3) Makarova/Vesnina (RUS/RUS) d. Keys/Riske (USA/USA) 75 61
(4) Hingis/Pennetta (SUI/ITA) d. Bencic/Siniakova (SUI/CZE) 76(3) 62
(6) Muguruza/Suárez Navarro (ESP/ESP) d. Lepchenko/Tatishvili (USA/USA) 63 62
Kuznetsova/Stosur (RUS/AUS) d. (8) Chan/Peschke (TPE/CZE) 63 62
(11) Medina Garrigues/Shvedova (ESP/KAZ) d. Falconi/Martic (USA/CRO) 63 63
(12) Kudryavtseva/Pavlyuchenkova (RUS/RUS) d. Aoyama/Voracova (JPN/CZE) 62 76(5)
(13) Krajicek/Zahlavova Strycova (NED/CZE) d. Erakovic/Puig (NZL/PUR) 67(9) 76(6) 63
(15) Date-Krumm/Dellacqua (JPN/AUS) d. Peng/Xu (CHN/CHN) 46 75 76(5)
Barthel/Minella (GER/LUX) d. Kalashnikova/Nara (GEO/JPN) 63 75
Diatchenko/Niculescu (RUS/ROU) d. Davis/McHale (USA/USA) 62 46 63
Rodionova/Rodionova (AUS/AUS) d. (WC) Bains/Tomic (AUS/AUS) 62 62
Dabrowski/Rosolska (CAN/POL) d. Black/Zheng (ZIM/CHN) 61 64
Jans-Ignacik/Klepac (POL/SLO) d. Jankovic/Parra Santonja (SRB/ESP) 76(5) 57 76(2)
Rogers/Vekic (USA/CRO) d. Cornet/Parmentier (FRA/FRA) 46 62 64
(WC) Adamczak/Rogowska (AUS/AUS) d. (WC) Gavrilova/Sanders (AUS/AUS) 26 63 64

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2015 Australian Open Day 3 Men’s Match Notes and Previews

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2015 AUSTRALIAN OPEN

DAY 3 MEN’S NOTES

Wednesday 21 January

2nd Round Bottom Half

 

 

Featured matches

 

No. 2 Roger Federer (SUI) v Simone Bolelli (ITA)
No. 3 Rafael Nadal (ESP) v (Q) Tim Smyczek (USA)
No. 6 Andy Murray (GBR) v Marinko Matosevic (AUS)

No. 7 Tomas Berdych (CZE) v (Q) Jurgen Melzer (AUT)
No. 10 Grigor Dimitrov (BUL) v Lukas Lacko (SVK)
No. 22 Philipp Kohlschreiber (GER) v Bernard Tomic (AUS)
No. 24 Richard Gasquet (FRA) v (WC) James Duckworth (AUS)

Sam Groth (AUS) v (WC) Thanasi Kokkinakis (AUS)
 

On court today…

  • 2009 Australian Open champion Rafael Nadal opens the night session on Rod Laver Arena against qualifier Tim Smyczek. The 14-time Grand Slam champion has never lost to a qualifier at a major and will hope to avoid a 3rd upset in his last 5 meetings with qualifiers. A shock win for Smyczek would see him become the first American to defeat a Top 3 player at a Grand Slam since Andy Roddick defeated Andy Murray at 2009 Wimbledon.

 

  • Fellow former champion Roger Federer, a 4-time winner at Melbourne Park, is also in action today in the third match on Rod Laver Arena. Federer comes up against Simone Bolelli – a player he has faced twice in Davis Cup, most recently during last year’s semifinal against Italy in Geneva. Bolelli is looking for his first victory over a Top 10 player on his 34th attempt.

 

  • 3-time Australian Open runner-up Andy Murray will look to continue his dominant record against Australians when he faces Marinko Matosevic in the second match on Margaret Court Arena. The Scot has won all of his 9 previous Tour-level meetings with Australian players.

 

  • Matosevic is one of 6 Australian men in action today – the highest number through to the 2nd round at the Australian Open since 2003, when there were 8 [NB Written prior to the Lleyton Hewitt v Zhang Ze match on Tuesday evening]. The last time 6 Australian men reached the 3rd round here was in 1988 when there were 7.

 

  • Sam Groth and wild card Thanasi Kokkinakis will contest just the second all-Australian Grand Slam clash since 2004 when they meet on Hisense Arena. They will be playing for the possibility of another all-Australian meeting in the 3rd round – against the winner of the Philipp Kohlschreiber v Bernard Tomic night match on Margaret Court Arena.

 

 

 

 

 

  1. 2 ROGER FEDERER (SUI) v SIMONE BOLELLI (ITA)

Head-to-head: Federer leads 3-0

2008     Basel                            Hard (I)             QF        Federer             62 63

2009     Davis Cup (WG-PO)      Clay (O)            R2        Federer             63 64 61

2014     Davis Cup (WG-SF)       Hard (I)             R1        Federer             76(5) 64 64

 

FEDERER                                       v                                       BOLELLI

 

33                                           Age                                           29

2                                    ATP Ranking                                   48

83                                         Titles                                          0

280-45                      Career Grand Slam Record                       19-22

74-11                         Australian Open Record                           3-4

1001-227                              Career Record                                89-123

622-127                          Career Record – Hard                           36-63

5-0                                    2015 Record                                    4-2

5-0                               2015 Record – Hard                              4-2

23-19                          Career Five-Set Record                           5-3

9                          Comebacks from 0-2 Down                          1

369-198                        Career Tiebreak Record                         59-52

0-1                             2015 Tiebreak Record                            1-0

 

  • FEDERER is bidding to become the 2nd man in history to win 5 Australian Open singles titles. The only man to do so was Roy Emerson, who went on to win his 6th Australian Open title in 1967 [see Preview page 1].

 

  • At 33 years 177 days, Federer is also looking to become the oldest man to win the Australian Open since Ken Rosewall, who was 37 years 62 days when he lifted the title in 1972.

 

  • Federer is bidding to maintain his record of always having reached the 3rd round He defeated Yen-Hsun Lu 64 62 75 in the 1st round on Monday night.

 

  • Last year here Federer reached the semifinals for the 11th successive year (l. Rafael Nadal). Elsewhere in Grand Slam play in 2014 he reached the round of 16 at Roland Garros (l. Ernests Gulbis), finished as runner-up at Wimbledon (l. Novak Djokovic) and reached the semifinals at the US Open (l. Marin Cilic). His round of 16 defeat at Roland Garros was his earliest defeat in Paris since losing in the 3rd round in 2004.

 

  • This is Federer’s 63rd major appearance and his 61st straight Grand Slam event. He is in joint 2nd place with Lleyton Hewitt for the most Grand Slams played in the Open Era behind Fabrice Santoro (70) [see Preview pages 4-5].

 

  • Federer warmed up for the Australian Open by winning his 83rd career title at Brisbane, defeating Milos Raonic in his 125th Tour-level final to record his 1000th career match-win. He became the 3rd player in the Open Era to record 1000 match-wins after Jimmy Connors (1,253) and Ivan Lendl (1,071).

 

  • Federer won 5 titles in 2014 at Dubai (d. Tomas Berdych), Halle (d. Alejandro Falla), Cincinnati-1000
    (d. David Ferrer), Shanghai-1000 (d. Gilles Simon) and Basel (d. David Goffin). He was also part of the Swiss Davis Cup team that defeated France in the Final to win the title for the first time in its history, winning his 50th Davis Cup rubber to clinch the decisive point against Richard Gasquet. He ended the year with a Tour-leading 73-12 match win-loss record.

 

  • Federer has won 4 titles here – in 2004 (d. Marat Safin 76 64 62), 2006 (d. Marcos Baghdatis 57 75 60 62), 2007 (d. Fernando Gonzalez 76 64 64) and 2010 (d. Andy Murray 63 64 76).

 

  • Federer is a 17-time Grand Slam singles champion. His last title at a major came at 2012 Wimbledon
    (d. Andy Murray). He was one of 6 Grand Slam champions to start in this year’s men’s singles main draw.

 

  • Federer has not lost to a player ranked as low as today’s opponent since losing to No. 60 Lleyton Hewitt in the final at 2014 Brisbane. He has not lost to a player ranked as low as today’s opponent at a Grand Slam since losing to No. 116 Sergiy Stakhovsky at 2013 Wimbledon.
  • Federer is coached by 2-time Australian Open champion Stefan Edberg and Severin Luthi.

 

  • BOLELLI is bidding to reach the 3rd round at the Australian Open for the first time. He defeated Juan Monaco 63 36 63 61 in the 1st round.

 

  • By reaching the 2nd round here Bolelli has equalled his best Australian Open performance. He also reached the 2nd round here in 2008 (l. Novak Djokovic) and 2009 (l. Mardy Fish). This is Bolelli’s 5th Australian Open appearance but first since 2013. He missed the event in 2014 as he was recovering from wrist surgery.

 

  • Bolelli’s best Grand Slam performance is reaching the 3rd round at 2008 Roland Garros (l. Michael Llodra), and at Wimbledon 3 times – in 2008 (l. Lleyton Hewitt), as a lucky loser in 2011 (l. Richard Gasquet) and as a lucky loser in 2014 (l. Kei Nishikori). This is his 23rd appearance at a major.

 

  • Bolelli warmed up for the Australian Open by reaching the 2nd round at Doha (l. Gasquet) and the quarterfinals at Sydney (l. Viktor Troicki).

 

  • Bolelli had wrist surgery after 2013 Wimbledon, returning at the Bergamo Challenger (ITA) in February 2014. Last year he had most success on the Challenger Circuit, winning 4 titles. He climbed 189 places in the year-end rankings to finish 2014 ranked No. 55.

 

  • At the Grand Slams in 2014 Bolelli reached the 3rd round as a lucky loser at Wimbledon and fell in the 2nd round as a qualifier at Roland Garros (l. David Ferrer) and as a direct acceptance at the US Open (l. Tommy Robredo).

 

  • Bolelli is bidding for his first victory over a Top 10 player on his 34th attempt. The best win of his career is defeating No. 13 Gilles Simon at 2012 Queen’s. [NB He also defeated No. 6 Simon at the 2009 Hopman Cup.]

 

  • Bolelli has entered the men’s doubles here with compatriot Fabio Fognini. They will play Steve Johnson/Sam Querrey in the 1st round. Bolelli has won 3 career doubles titles, most recently at 2013 Buenos Aires with Fognini.

 

  • Bolelli is coached by Giancarlo Petrazzuolo.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. 3 RAFAEL NADAL (ESP) v (Q) TIM SMYCZEK (USA)

 

Head-to-head: first meeting

 

Smyczek is looking to become the 3rd lowest-ranked player to defeat Nadal at a Grand Slam. Nadal’s worst Grand Slam defeats have both come at Wimbledon – to No. 135 Steve Darcis in 2013 and No. 144 Nick Kyrgios in 2014.

 

Smyczek is bidding to become the first American to defeat a Top 3 player at a Grand Slam since Andy Roddick defeated No. 3 Andy Murray at 2009 Wimbledon.

 

                            NADAL                                         v                                      SMYCZEK

 

28                                           Age                                           27

3                                    ATP Ranking                                   112

64                                         Titles                                          0

188-25                      Career Grand Slam Record                        6-7

42-8                          Australian Open Record                           2-2

707-141                               Career Record                                23-40

334-96                          Career Record – Hard                           20-32

1-1                                    2015 Record                                    1-0

1-1                               2015 Record – Hard                              1-0

16-5                          Career Five-Set Record                           2-1

3                          Comebacks from 0-2 Down                          0

177-107                        Career Tiebreak Record                          6-20

0-0                             2015 Tiebreak Record                            1-0

 

  • 2009 champion NADAL is bidding to maintain his record of always having reached at least the 3rd round at the Australian Open. Last year here he lost to Stan Wawrinka 63 62 36 63 in the final.

 

  • Nadal advanced to the 2nd round after defeating Mikhail Youzhny 63 62 62 in the 1st round on Monday.

 

  • 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 two or more occasions [see Preview page 1].

 

  • Last year Nadal won Roland Garros for the 9th time to extend his record for the most titles won at any one Grand Slam event. He also won the titles at Doha, Rio de Janeiro and Madrid-1000. He missed 2 months of the season with a right wrist injury and was forced to finish his season early due to appendicitis.
  • Elsewhere at the majors in 2014, Nadal fell to world No. 144 Nick Kyrgios in the round of 16 at Wimbledon. It was the first time a world No. 1 had lost to a teenager at a Grand Slam since Nadal defeated Roger Federer at 2005 Roland Garros aged 19 years 2 days. Nadal missed the US Open with a right wrist injury.
  • Nadal is looking 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). He was one of 6 Grand Slam champions to start this year’s men’s main draw.

 

  • This is Nadal’s 10th Australian Open appearance. His best performance at the Australian Open was 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.

 

  • Nadal has lost 2 of his last 4 matches against qualifiers, falling to Michael Berrer at 2015 Doha and to Martin Klizan at 2014 Beijing. His defeat to Klizan ended a 68-match winning streak against qualifiers. He has never lost to a qualifier at a major.
  • Nadal warmed up for the Australian Open at Doha where he lost in the 1st round to Michael Berrer 16 63 64. However, he won the doubles title there with Juan Monaco (d. Julian Knowle/Philipp Oswald).
  • Nadal is coached by his uncle, Toni Nadal, and his fitness trainer is Rafael Maymo.

 

  • Qualifier SMYCZEK is bidding to reach the 3rd round here and equal his best Grand Slam result.

 

  • Smyczek’s best Grand Slam performance is reaching the 3rd round as a wild card at the 2013 US Open
    (l. Marcel Granollers) – the only time he has recorded back-to-back match-wins at a major.

 

  • By reaching the 2nd round here, Smyczek has equalled his best Australian Open performance. He also reached the 2nd round here on his debut as a lucky loser in 2013 (l. David Ferrer).

 

  • As No. 4 seed, Smyczek defeated Kimmer Coppejans (BEL) 76(3) 75, wild card Marc Polmans (AUS) 62 63 and Maxime Authom (BEL) 57 76(1) 62 in the 3 rounds of qualifying.

 

  • Smyczek is contesting his 3rd Australian Open and his 8th Grand Slam. Last year here he lost to Roberto Bautista Agut in the 1st round. He failed to qualify here in 2011 and 2012.

 

  • Elsewhere at the Grand Slams in 2014, Smyczek reached the 2nd round as a wild card at the US Open
    (l. Roberto Bautista Agut) having failed to qualify at Wimbledon and Roland Garros.

 

  • Smyczek defeated wild card Luke Saville 76(2) 75 64 in the 1st round here. It was just his 2nd victory at a Grand Slam outside the US Open and his 6th Grand Slam match-win overall.

 

  • Smyczek’s best result in 2014 was reaching the final at the Napa Challenger (USA) (l. Sam Querrey) and the semifinals at the Maui Challenger (USA), the Sacramento Challenger (USA) and the Knoxville Challenger (l. Sam Groth). His best Tour-level result was a 3rd round finish at Washington (l. Richard Gasquet).

 

  • Smyczek warmed up for the Australian Open at Brisbane, where he fell to Marius Copil in the 2nd round of qualifying.

 

  • Smyczek lost both of his 2 previous meetings against Top 10 opposition – against No. 4 Andy Murray at 2010 Los Angeles and No. 5 David Ferrer at the 2013 Australian Open. The highest-ranked player he has defeated is No. 19 Jurgen Melzer at 2012 Delray Beach.

 

  • Smyczek is coached by Billy Heiser.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. 6 ANDY MURRAY (GBR) v MARINKO MATOSEVIC (AUS)

Head-to-head: Murray leads 2-0

2013     Queen’s                        Grass (O)          R16      Murray              62 62

2014     Roland Garros              Clay (O)            R64      Murray             63 61 63

2015     Hopman Cup                 Hard (I)             R2        Murray              63 62

 

MURRAY                                        v                                     MATOSEVIC

 

27                                           Age                                           29

6                                    ATP Ranking                                   81

31                                         Titles                                          0

135-33                      Career Grand Slam Record                        3-15

34-9                          Australian Open Record                           1-5

482-151                               Career Record                                61-81

333-95                          Career Record – Hard                           46-57

1-0                                    2015 Record                                    1-2

1-0                               2015 Record – Hard                              1-2

17-6                          Career Five-Set Record                           1-4

7                          Comebacks from 0-2 Down                          0

140-88                        Career Tiebreak Record                         33-30

1-0                             2015 Tiebreak Record                            0-2

 

  • 3-time Australian Open runner-up MURRAY is bidding to reach the 3rd round here for the 7th consecutive year. He is contesting his 10th straight Australian Open and 36th Grand Slam overall.

 

  • Murray is looking to become the first man in the Open Era to win the Australian Open title after losing 3 finals. He finished as runner-up here in 2010 ( Roger Federer), 2011 (l. Novak Djokovic) and 2013
    (l. Djokovic). Marat Safin is the only player to lose 2 or more Australian Open finals before winning the title [see Preview page 2].

 

  • Last year here Murray reached the quarterfinals, falling to Roger Federer 63 64 67(6) 63. Elsewhere in Grand Slam play in 2014 he reached the semifinals at Roland Garros (l. Rafael Nadal) and the quarterfinals at Wimbledon (l. Grigor Dimitrov) and the US Open (l. Djokovic). It was the 4th straight year he had reached the quarterfinals at all Grand Slams in a calendar year. [NB He missed 2013 Roland Garros with a back injury.]

 

  • Also in 2014, Murray won 3 titles – at Shenzhen (d. Tommy Robredo), Vienna (d. David Ferrer) and Valencia (d. Robredo). He saved 5 match points in both of his finals against Robredo. The Valencia final was the longest ATP final in 2014 at 3 hours 20 minutes.

 

  • Murray warmed up for the Australian Open at the Hopman Cup, where he won all 3 of the singles matches he played against Benoit Paire, Jerzy Janowicz and today’s opponent in straight sets.

 

  • Murray was one of 6 Grand Slam champions to start in the men’s main draw here. Murray won the 2012 US Open title (d. Djokovic) and became the first British man to win the Wimbledon singles title in 77 years in 2013 (d. Djokovic).

 

  • Murray has never lost to an Australian opponent. He has a 9-0 Tour-level win-loss record against the 6 different Australian opponents he has faced. [NB He also defeated today’s opponent at 2015 Hopman Cup.]

 

  • Murray has lost to a player ranked as low as No. 81 Matosevic at a Grand Slam just once before – losing to No. 91 Arnaud Clement at the 2005 US Open. Murray has not lost to a player ranked as low as or lower than today’s opponent at Tour-level since he lost to No. 92 Guillermo Garcia-Lopez at 2012 Indian Wells-1000. The lowest ranked player he has lost to at the Australian Open is No. 51 Juan Ignacio Chela on his debut here in 2006.

 

  • Murray is coached by 2006 Australian Open and Wimbledon champion Amelie Mauresmo.

 

  • MATOSEVIC is looking to reach the 3rd round at a Grand Slam for the first time.

 

  • Matosevic defeated qualifier Alexander Kudryavtsev 64 67(5) 46 75 63 in the 1st round on Monday to record his first match-win at Melbourne Park in his 6th appearance here. He fell in the 1st round here on each of his appearances from 2010-2014.

 

  • Matosevic’s 5-set victory over Kudryavtsev was his first 5-set match-win at Tour-level and ended a 4-match losing streak in 5-set matches. He was one of 4 Australian men to win their 1st round match in 5-sets on Monday.

 

  • Matosevic is one of the 6 Australian men (7 if Hewitt wins his 1st round match on Tuesday evening) to reach the 2nd round here – the highest number since 2003, when there were 8 Australian men through to the 2nd round. The last time 6 Australian men reached the 3rd round here was in 1988 when there were 7.

 

  • By reaching the 2nd round here, Matosevic has equalled his best Grand Slam performance. He reached the 2nd round for the first time on his 13th Grand Slam appearance at 2014 Roland Garros (l. today’s opponent) to set an Open Era record for the most Grand Slam appearances before reaching the 2nd round. He also reached the 2nd round at 2014 Wimbledon (l. Jeremy Chardy). This is his 16th appearance at a major.

 

  • As well as winning his first Grand Slam match in 2014, Matosevic reached 6 Tour-level quarterfinals. He fell in the 1st round at the Australian Open (l. Kei Nishikori) and at the US Open (l. Roger Federer).

 

  • Prior to coming here Matosevic lost in the 1st round at both Brisbane (l. Steve Johnson) and Sydney (l. Simone Bolelli). He also stepped in to replace an injured Matt Ebden in Hopman Cup, defeating Benoit Paire but losing to today’s opponent.

 

  • Matosevic is bidding to win his first match against a Top 10 opponent today on his 15th attempt. The highest ranked player that he has defeated is No. 12 Tommy Haas at 2013 Montreal-1000 after Haas retired with a right shoulder injury while trailing 5-0.

 

  • Matosevic has entered the men’s doubles here with Marcos Baghdatis. They will play No. 7 seeds Rohan Bopanna/Daniel Nestor in the 1st round.

 

  • Matosevic is coached by Mark Woodforde, who was an Australian Open singles semifinalist in 1996 and won the men’s doubles title here in 1992 and 1997 with Todd Woodbridge.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. 7 TOMAS BERDYCH (CZE) v (Q) JURGEN MELZER (AUT)

Head-to-head: Berdych leads 3-2

2005     Adelaide                       Hard (O)            R32      Melzer               64 46 63

2005     AMS Montreal               Hard (O)            R64      Berdych            61 63

2007     Sydney                         Hard (O)            QF        Melzer               62 64

2011     Beijing                          Hard (O)            R32      Berdych            75 75

2013     Australian Open           Hard (O)           R32      Berdych           63 62 62

 

A 2nd meeting at the Australian Open in 3 years for these 2 players, who have only met on a hard court.

 

BERDYCH                                       v                                        MELZER

 

29                                           Age                                           33

7                                    ATP Ranking                                   108

10                                         Titles                                          5

104-45                      Career Grand Slam Record                       57-49

30-11                         Australian Open Record                         14-11

490-262                               Career Record                               336-318

298-162                          Career Record – Hard                         173-163

5-1                                    2015 Record                                    1-1

5-1                               2015 Record – Hard                              1-1

17-8                          Career Five-Set Record                          16-18

2                          Comebacks from 0-2 Down                          2

159-141                        Career Tiebreak Record                       141-149

1-0                             2015 Tiebreak Record                            1-1

 

  • BERDYCH is bidding to reach the 3rd round here for the 5th straight year. He defeated Alejandro Falla 63 76(1) 63 in the 1st round on Monday.

 

  • Last year here Berdych reached the semifinals (l. Stan Wawrinka) to complete a set of Grand Slam semifinal appearances. He was the 2nd Czech man in the Open Era after Ivan Lendl to complete the feat.
  • Berdych’s best result at a major is finishing runner-up at 2010 Wimbledon. He defeated Roger Federer in the quarterfinals and Novak Djokovic in the semifinals before losing to Rafael Nadal in the final.

 

  • Berdych warmed up for the Australian Open by reaching the final at Doha (l. David Ferrer).

 

  • In 2014 Berdych won 2 titles to take his career tally to 10. He ended a 16-month title drought by winning at Rotterdam (d. Marin Cilic) and also won at Stockholm (d. Grigor Dimitrov).

 

  • In Grand Slam play in 2014 Berdych reached the semifinals at the Australian Open, the quarterfinals at Roland Garros (l. Ernests Gulbis) and the US Open (l. Cilic), and lost in the 3rd round at Wimbledon
    (l. Cilic).

 

  • The last time Berdych lost to a player ranked as low as No. 108 today’s opponent was at 2013 Roland Garros, when he lost to No. 109 Gael Monfils in 5-sets in the 1st round.

 

  • Berdych is bidding to extend his 20-match winning streak against qualifiers. The last time he lost to a qualifier was against Stephane Robert at 2011 Roland Garros – one of only 2 occasions he has lost to qualifiers at a Grand Slam along with his defeat to Gilles Simon at the 2006 Australian Open.

 

  • Berdych is on a 6-match winning streak against lefthanded players. His last loss to a lefthanded player came against Feliciano Lopez at 2014 Toronto-1000.

 

  • Berdych has been a permanent fixture in the Top 10 since 5 July 2010. He has been seeded at every Grand Slam event he has played since the 2005 US Open.

 

  • This is Berdych’s 12th consecutive Australian Open appearance and his 46th consecutive Grand Slam. He is in joint-7th place for the most consecutive Grand Slam appearances in the Open Era having played at every major since making his debut at the 2003 US Open [see Preview page 4].
  • Berdych started working with Dani Vallverdu, who previously worked with Andy Murray, ahead of the 2015 season. His fitness coach is Azuz Simcich and his physio is Per Bastholt.

 

  • Qualifier MELZER is bidding to reach the 3rd round here for the 6th time.

 

  • Melzer advanced to the 2nd round on his first appearance here since 2013 after defeating Victor Estrella Burgos 61 64 62. He missed the 2014 Australian Open with a shoulder injury.

 

  • Melzer came through qualifying as No. 2 seed, defeating Nicolas Jarry (CHI) 63 64, Daniel Munoz-De La Nava (ESP) 26 76(2) 75 and No. 17 seed Steve Darcis (BEL) 76(6) 16 64 in the 3 rounds of qualifying.
  • This is Melzer’s 12th Australian Open appearance and his 50th Grand Slam overall. His best result at Melbourne Park is reaching the round of 16 in 2011 (l. Andy Murray).

 

  • Melzer’s best Grand Slam result is a semifinal finish at 2010 Roland Garros. He upset No. 3 seed Novak Djokovic 36 26 62 76 64 in the quarterfinals for his first-ever comeback from 0-2 down, before losing to Rafael Nadal 62 63 76 in the semifinals.

 

  • In Grand Slam play last year Melzer won just one match, defeating defeated David Goffin in the 1st round at 2014 Roland Garros before losing to Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. He also lost to Tsonga in the 1st round at Wimbledon and to Marcel Granollers in the 1st round at the US Open.

 

  • Melzer warmed up for the Australian Open at Brisbane, where he lost to Martin Klizan in the 1st round.
  • Melzer finished 2014 ranked No. 113 – the first time he has finished the year ranked outside the Top 100 since 2001. He spent 7 months away from the game with a shoulder injury, returning at 2014 Monte-Carlo. Melzer is a former Top 10 player but plays here ranked No. 108.

 

  • Melzer’s best result in 2014 was reaching the semifinals at ’s-Hertogenbosch (l. Roberto Bautista Agut) – one of only 5 occasions he has won back-to-back Tour-level matches since he reached the semifinals at 2013 Kuala Lumpur.
  • Melzer is bidding to end a 13-match losing streak against Top 10 opposition. The last time he defeated a player ranked in the Top 10 was against No. 3 Roger Federer at 2011 Monte Carlo-1000. He has defeated a Top 10 player on 12 occasions at Tour-level.
  • Melzer is coached by Markus Hipfl, who reached the 2nd round at the Australian Open in 2002.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. 10 GRIGOR DIMITROV (BUL) v LUKAS LACKO (SVK)

Head-to-head: first meeting

2010     Orleans Challenger        Hard (I)             R32      Dimitrov            75 63

 

DIMITROV                                       v                                         LACKO

 

23                                           Age                                           27

11                                    ATP Ranking                                   99

4                                          Titles                                          0

21-17                       Career Grand Slam Record                        9-22

7-4                           Australian Open Record                           5-7

147-95                               Career Record                                72-100

79-59                           Career Record – Hard                           59-69

3-1                                    2015 Record                                    1-1

3-1                               2015 Record – Hard                              1-1

3-3                           Career Five-Set Record                           6-6

0                          Comebacks from 0-2 Down                          1

54-54                         Career Tiebreak Record                         43-36

1-0                             2015 Tiebreak Record                            0-2

 

  • DIMITROV advanced to the 2nd round after defeating Dustin Brown 62 63 62 in the 1st round on Monday.

 

  • Last year here Dimitrov broke through to his first Grand Slam quarterfinal, where he lost to Rafael Nadal. This is his 5th consecutive Australian Open appearance and his 18th major overall.

 

  • Dimitrov’s best Grand Slam result is reaching the semifinals at 2014 Wimbledon. He defeated defending champion Andy Murray in the quarterfinals before losing to Novak Djokovic in the semifinals. He broke into the Top 10 for the first time afterwards at No. 9.

 

  • Dimitrov had a breakthrough season in 2014. As well as reaching the semifinals at Wimbledon and the quarterfinals at the Australian Open, he won the titles at Acapulco (d. Kevin Anderson), Bucharest (d. Lukas Rosol) and Queen’s (d. Feliciano Lopez). He recorded a career-high ranking of No. 8 in August.

 

  • Elsewhere at the Grand Slams in 2014, Dimitrov lost in the 1st round at Roland Garros (l. Ivo Karlovic) and the round of 16 at the US Open (l. Gael Monfils).

 

  • Dimitrov warmed up for the Australian Open by reaching the semifinals at Brisbane (l. Roger Federer).

 

  • Dimitrov finished 2008 as 3 in the ITF Junior Rankings after winning the boys’ singles titles at Wimbledon (d. Henri Kontinen) and the US Open (d. Devin Britton).

 

  • Dimitrov has played Davis Cup since 2008. In 2014 he improved his win-loss record to 15-1 after winning the opening rubber in Bulgaria’s 4-1 victory over Greece.

 

  • Dimitrov was part of the ITF 14 & Under European Team in Europe in 2004-05 and the ITF 16 & Under European A Team in Europe in 2006, funded by the Grand Slam Development Fund.

 

  • Dimitrov is coached by Roger Rasheed, who reached the 2nd round at the Australian Open in 1988 and 1992. His fitness trainer is Stephane Vivier.

 

  • LACKO’S 46 62 75 67(4) 61 victory over Maximo Gonzalez in the 1st round on Monday was his first Grand Slam match-win since the 2013 Australian Open. He lost in the 1st round at the last 7 majors.

 

  • Lacko’s victory over Gonzalez in the 1st round here improved his 5-set singles win-loss record to 6-6. He has a 2-1 win-loss record in 5-set matches at the Australian Open.

 

  • Lacko is bidding to reach the 3rd round here and equal his best Grand Slam result. He reached the 3rd round as a qualifier at the 2012 Australian Open (l. Rafael Nadal) and as a direct acceptance at 2012 Wimbledon (l. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga).

 

  • Last year here Lacko lost to Novak Djokovic in the 1st round. This is his 8th appearance at the Australian Open and his 23rd Grand Slam overall.

 

  • In 2014 Lacko’s best results were reaching the quarterfinals at Atlanta (l. Jack Sock) and Shenzhen (l. Andy Murray). He lost in the 1st round at all 4 Grand Slams last year.

 

  • Lacko went undefeated in 3 Davis Cup singles rubbers to help Slovakia reach the World Group play-offs for the first time since 2008. They lost their play-off tie against USA 5-0 with Lacko losing both his singles and doubles rubber.

 

  • Prior to coming here, Lacko lost in the 1st round at Chennai (l. Aljaz Bedene) and failed to qualify for Auckland.

 

  • The best win of Lacko’s career came against No. 17 Sam Querrey at 2011 San Jose. He goes into today’s match with a 1-30 win-loss record against Top 20 opposition.

 

  • Lacko enjoyed an outstanding junior career, reaching a career-high ranking of No. 3 in 2005. The same year he reached the semifinals of the boys’ singles event at Roland Garros (l. Antal Van Der Duim) and the quarterfinals at the junior Australian Open (l. Sergei Bubka).

 

  • Lacko is coached by Ladislav Simon. His fitness trainer is Juraj Dulik.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. 22 PHILIPP KOHLSCHREIBER (GER) v BERNARD TOMIC (AUS)

Head-to-head: tied 1-1

2009     Roland Garros              Clay (O)            R128     Kohlschreiber  61 62 62

2015     Sydney                         Hard (O)            R16      Tomic               63 64

 

KOHLSCHREIBER                                 v                                         TOMIC

 

31                                           Age                                           22

24                                    ATP Ranking                                   66

5                                          Titles                                          2

57-41                       Career Grand Slam Record                       23-19

18-9                          Australian Open Record                          10-6

328-261                               Career Record                                94-90

163-138                          Career Record – Hard                           66-57

1-2                                    2015 Record                                    5-2

1-2                               2015 Record – Hard                              5-2

14-9                          Career Five-Set Record                           5-1

2                          Comebacks from 0-2 Down                          2

140-129                        Career Tiebreak Record                         58-43

  • 2015 Tiebreak Record                                 2-3

 

  • KOHLSCHREIBER recorded his first match-win of 2015 when he defeated Paul-Henri Mathieu 62 62 61 in the 1st round on Monday. This is his 10th Australian Open appearance and his 42nd Grand Slam overall.

 

  • Kohlschreiber’s best Australian Open performance is reaching the round of 16 on his debut here in 2005
    (l. Andy Roddick), 2008 (l. Jarkko Nieminen) and 2012 (l. Juan Martin del Potro). He withdrew from the event on the morning of his 1st round match last year with a strained left hamstring.

 

  • Kohlschreiber broke through to his first Grand Slam quarterfinal at 2012 Wimbledon (l. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga). It was his 33rd Grand Slam appearance which put him in 4th place for the most Grand Slam appearances before reaching his first quarterfinal at the majors.

 

  • Last year Kohlschreiber won his 5th career singles title at Dusseldorf (d. Ivo Karlovic). He reached the semifinals at Dubai, Halle, Hamburg and Vienna and the quarterfinals at 5 further events. He finished the year ranked No. 24 – the 11th straight year he has been ranked inside the Top 100.

 

  • In Grand Slam play last year, Kohlschreiber missed the Australian Open through injury, reached the 3rd round at Roland Garros (l. Andy Murray), the 2nd round at Wimbledon (l. Simone Bolelli) and the round of 16 at the US Open (l. Novak Djokovic).

 

  • Prior to coming here Kohlschreiber lost in the 1st round at Doha (l. Jan-Lennard Struff) and in the 2nd round at Sydney (l. today’s opponent) following a 1st round bye.

 

  • Kohlschreiber is coached by Stephan Fehske. His fitness trainer is Marco Panicci.

 

  • TOMIC reached the 2nd round after defeating Tobias Kamke 75 67(1) 63 62 in the 1st round on Monday. This is his 7th consecutive appearance at the Australian Open and his 21st Grand Slam overall.

 

  • Tomic’s best Grand Slam result is reaching the quarterfinals as a qualifier at 2011 Wimbledon (l. Novak Djokovic). He was the youngest man since Boris Becker in 1986 to reach the quarterfinals at Wimbledon.
  • Tomic’s best Australian Open performance is reaching the round of 16 in 2012 (l. Roger Federer).

 

  • Last year here Tomic retired with a groin injury when trailing Rafael Nadal 6-4 in the 1st round. He subsequently underwent double hip surgery returning to the Tour at 2014 Miami-1000. In his first match back he lost to Jarkko Nieminen 60 61 in 28 minutes – the shortest completed ATP match on record.

 

  • Also last year, Tomic won his second Tour-level title at Bogota. As a wild card ranked No. 124 he defeated No. 2 seed Ivo Karlovic (CRO) in the final. In 2014 he also finished as runner-up in Sydney (l. Juan Martin del Potro) and the semfinals at Stockholm (l. Grigor Dimitrov).

 

  • At the Grand Slams in 2014, Tomic reached the 2nd round at Wimbledon (l. Tomas Berdych) and the US Open (l. David Ferrer) and lost in the 1st round at the Australian Open and Roland Garros (l. Richard Gasquet).

 

  • Tomic is on a 5-match winning streak in 5-set matches. He lost his first ever 5-set match to Marin Cilic here in 2010. 3 of his 6 career 5-set matches have come at Melbourne Park.

 

  • Tomic warmed up for the Australian Open by reaching the quarterfinals at Brisbane (l. Kei Nishikori) and Sydney (l. Gilles Muller).

 

  • Tomic is one of the 6 Australian men (7 if Hewitt wins on Tuesday evening) to reach the 2nd round here – the highest number since 2003, when there were 8 Australian men through to the 2nd round. The last time 6 Australian men reached the 3rd round here was in 1988 when there were 7.

 

  • Tomic was one of 7 former junior Australian Open champions to start in the draw. He won the 2008 Australian Open boys’ title aged 15 years 3 months, defeating Yang Tsung-Hua in the final. He was the youngest winner of the title since Ken Rosewall in 1950. He also won the 2009 US Open boys’ singles title
    (d. Chase Buchanan).

 

  • Tomic is coached by his father John.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. 24 RICHARD GASQUET (FRA) v (WC) JAMES DUCKWORTH (AUS)

Head-to-head: Gasquet leads 1-0

2014     Wimbledon      Grass (O)          R128     Gasquet           67(3) 63 36 60 61

 

GASQUET                                       v                                    DUCKWORTH

 

28                                           Age                                          23*

28                                    ATP Ranking                                   120

10                                         Titles                                          0

75-40                       Career Grand Slam Record                        3-8

19-11                         Australian Open Record                           3-3

382-228                               Career Record                                 9-18

224-136                          Career Record – Hard                            8-13

3-1                                    2015 Record                                    3-1

3-1                               2015 Record – Hard                              3-1

8-13                          Career Five-Set Record                           2-3

2                          Comebacks from 0-2 Down                          0

128-116                        Career Tiebreak Record                           8-5

0-0                             2015 Tiebreak Record                            2-0

*Turned 23 today

 

  • GASQUET is bidding to reach the 3rd round at the Australian Open for the 5th straight year. He advanced to the 2nd round after defeating Carlos Berlocq 61 63 61 in the 1st round on Monday.

 

  • Last year here, Gasquet lost in the 3rd round to Tommy Robredo.

 

  • Gasquet’s best Australian Open result is reaching the round of 16 on 4 occasions – in 2007 (l. Tommy Robredo), 2008 (l. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga), 2012 (l. David Ferrer) and 2013 (l. Tsonga). This is his 12th Australian Open appearance and his 42nd Grand Slam appearance overall.

 

  • Gasquet’s Grand Slam highlight is reaching the semifinals at 2007 Wimbledon (l. Roger Federer) and the 2013 US Open (l. Rafael Nadal),

 

  • At the Grand Slams in 2014 Gasquet reached the 2nd round at Wimbledon (l. Nick Kyrgios) and the 3rd round at the Australian Open, Roland Garros (l. Fernando Verdasco) and the US Open (l. Gael Monfils). He failed to convert 9 match points in his 10-8 fifth set loss to Kyrgios at Wimbledon.

 

  • Gasquet’s loss to No. 144 Kyrgios at 2014 Wimbledon is one of 3 times he has lost to a player ranked outside the Top 100 at a Grand Slam. He also lost to No. 219 Florian Mayer at the 2004 Australian Open and No. 103 Kenneth Carlsen at 2004 Wimbledon. [NB He gave a walkover to No. 223 Donald Young at the 2007 US Open.]

 

  • Gasquet’s best results in 2014 are finishing runner-up at Montpellier (l. Monfils) and Eastbourne
    (l. Feliciano Lopez). He also reached the semifinals at Marseille and Washington. He finished the year ranked No. 26, his lowest year-end ranking since 2010.

 

  • Gasquet warmed up for this year’s Australian Open by reaching the quarterfinals at Doha, losing to Tomas Berdych. He also played at the Kooyong Exhibition event – defeating Feliciano Lopez 76 36 62 and Kei Nishikori 76 76.

 

  • Gasquet was a member of the French Davis Cup team that reached the Final in Lille last year. He lost the doubles with Julien Benneteau and the 4th rubber against Roger Federer in France’s 3-1 Final loss to Switzerland.

 

  • Gasquet was named ITF Junior Boys’ World Champion in 2002 after winning the boys’ singles at Roland Garros (d. Laurent Recourderc) and the US Open (d. Marcos Baghdatis). He reached the semifinals of the 2002 Australian Open boys’ singles, losing to Todd Reid.

 

  • Gasquet is coached by Sergi Bruguera, who reached the round of 16 here in 1993, and 2001 Australian Open semifinalist Sebastien Grosjean.

 

  • Wild card DUCKWORTH is bidding to reach the 3rd round at a Grand Slam for the first time.

 

  • Duckworth defeated Blaz Kavcic 62 57 76(7) 36 62 in the 1st round on Monday, improving his 5-set win-loss record to 2-3. He has a 2-1 five-set win-loss record at Melbourne Park.

 

  • By reaching the 2nd round here Duckworth has equalled his best Grand Slam result. He also reached the 2nd round at the Australian Open on his Grand Slam debut as a wild card in both 2012 (l. Janko Tipsarevic) and 2013 (l. Kavcic). He has lost in the 1st round on his 6 other appearances at a major.
  • In 2014 Duckworth played primarily on the Challenger Circuit, winning the titles at Lexington (USA)
    (d. James Ward) and Charlottesville (USA) (d. Liam Broady). He reached the final at the Santiago Challenger (l. Thiemo de Bakker). He recorded his best year-end ranking at No. 127.

 

  • At the Grand Slams in 2014 Duckworth failed to win a match. He lost in the 1st round as a wild card at the Australian Open (l. Roger Federer), and as a qualifier at both Roland Garros (l. Leonardo Mayer) and Wimbledon (l. today’s opponent). He failed to qualify for the US Open.

 

  • Duckworth warmed up for the Australian Open by reaching his first Tour-level quarterfinal as a wild card at Brisbane (l. Federer). He recorded a career high ranking of No. 119 as a result and plays here ranked No. 120.

 

  • Duckworth defeated No. 21 Gilles Simon in the 1st round at Brisbane for his first victory over a Top 30 player. He has a 1-7 win-loss record over Top 30 opposition

 

  • Duckworth has entered the men’s doubles here as a wild card with compatriot Luke Saville. They will play Feliciano Lopez/Max Mirnyi in the 1st round.

 

  • Duckworth’s grandmother Beryl Penrose was women’s singles champion at the 1955 Australian Championships. She reached the quarterfinals here in 1955.

 

  • Duckworth reached the quarterfinals of the Junior Australian Open in 2010 (l. Gianni Mina). He reached the semifinals at 2010 Junior Roland Garros (l. Agustin Velotti) and reached a career high junior ranking of No. 7 in July 2010.

 

  • Duckworth is coached by Ben Mathias. His physical trainer is Ian Prangley.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SAM GROTH (AUS) v (WC) THANASI KOKKINAKIS (AUS)

Head-to-head: first meeting

 

Groth and Kokkinakis are 2 of the 6 Australian men (7 if Hewitt won in the night match on Tuesday night) to reach the 2nd round here from the 10 who started the men’s main draw – this is the highest number since 2003, when there were 8 Australian men through to the 2nd round. The last time 6 Australian men reached the 3rd round was in 1988 when there were 7.

 

This is just the 2nd all-Australian men’s clash at a Grand Slam since 2004. The only other all-Australian clash at a Grand Slam in that time was between James Duckworth and Benjamin Mitchell here in 2013.

 

Kokkinakis is bidding to become the lowest-ranked player to defeat Groth at Tour-level since No. 181 Rajeev Ram at 2009 Newport.

 

GROTH                                         v                                    KOKKINAKIS

 

27                                           Age                                           18

82                                    ATP Ranking                                   147

0                                          Titles                                          0

2-4                        Career Grand Slam Record                        2-1

1-2                           Australian Open Record                           2-1

16-21                                Career Record                                  4-8

10-16                           Career Record – Hard                             4-7

3-2                                    2015 Record                                    2-1

3-2                               2015 Record – Hard                              2-1

0-0                           Career Five-Set Record                           1-0

0                          Comebacks from 0-2 Down                          0

18-17                         Career Tiebreak Record                           5-1

  • 2015 Tiebreak Record                                    1-1

 

  • GROTH is bidding to reach the 3rd round here and record his best Grand Slam result. He defeated Filip Krajinovic 63 76(4) 64 in the opening round on Monday for his first match-win at Melbourne Park.

 

  • By reaching the 2nd round here for the first time, Groth has equalled his best Grand Slam performance. He also reached the 2nd round at the 2014 US Open (l. Roger Federer) in his first major as a direct acceptance.

 

  • Groth is making his 3rd appearance at the Australian Open and his 5th at a Grand Slam overall. He fell in the 1st round on his Grand Slam debut here as a wild card in both 2009 (l. Mardy Fish) and last year
    (l. Vasek Pospisil).

 

  • Groth warmed up for the Australian Open by reaching the quarterfinals at Brisbane for the second straight year (l. Milos Raonic). He also played at Sydney as a wild card, losing to Gilles Muller in the 1st round.

 

  • Groth had a breakthrough year in 2014, reaching his first Tour-level semifinal at Newport (l. Ivo Karlovic) and breaking in to the Top 100 for the first time at No. 99 as a result. He reached a career-high ranking of No. 75 in November 2014 and plays here ranked No. 82. He played at 3 of the 4 Grand Slams and made his Davis Cup debut in Australia’s 5-0 World Group play-off victory over Uzbekistan in September.

 

  • Groth is on a 7-match winning streak against wild cards. The last time he lost to a wild card was against Lucas Pouille at the 2013 Australian Open. He has a 9-2 win-loss record against wild cards overall.

 

  • Groth won his first career doubles title with Chris Guccione at 2014 Bogota and reached 3 further finals – at Moscow and Shenzhen with Guccione, and Washington with Leander Paes. He entered the men’s doubles event here as No. 12 seed alongside Eric Butorac. The pair will face Italians Paolo Lorenzi/Andreas Seppi in the 1st round.

 

  • Groth is coached by Ben Mathias.
  • Wild card KOKKINAKIS is bidding to reach the 3rd round here and record his best Grand Slam result.

 

  • Kokkinakis advanced to the 2nd round after saving 4 match points to defeat No. 11 seed Ernests Gulbis 57 60 16 76(2) 86 on Monday evening.

 

  • By reaching the 2nd round here, Kokkinakis has equalled his best Grand Slam performance. Last year here on his Grand Slam debut as a wild card, Kokkinakis defeated Igor Sijsling to record his first Tour-level match-win before losing to top seed Rafael Nadal in the 2nd round.

 

  • Aged 18 years 297 days, Kokkinakis is bidding to become the youngest player to reach the 3rd round at the Australian Open since Bernard Tomic, aged 18 years 101 days, in 2011.

 

  • Kokkinakis is bidding to record his 4th Tour-level win over a Top 100 opponent. Two of his 3 wins over Top 100 opposition have come this year – as well as defeating No. 13 Gulbis in the opening round here and No. 25 Julien Benneteau at 2015 Brisbane, he also defeated No. 73 Igor Sijsling at the 2014 Australian Open.

 

  • This is Kokkinakis’ 2nd Grand Slam appearance. He failed to qualify at the 2013 Australian Open, at 2014 Roland Garros and the 2014 US Open.

 

  • Kokkinakis warmed up for the Australian Open as a wild card at Brisbane, where he reached the 2nd round (d. Benneteau, l. Bernard Tomic). He climbed to a career-high ranking of No. 147 as a result.

 

  • Kokkinakis’ best result in 2014 was reaching the semifinals as a qualifier at the Heilbronn Challenger (GER) (l. Jan-Lennard Struff) and as a wild card at the Lexington Challenger (USA) (l. James Duckworth). He also won the title at the Canada F5 Futures event.

 

  • Kokkinakis was a strong junior. In 2013 he reached the final of the boys’ singles event here (l. Nick Kyrgios 76(4) 63), the junior US Open final (l. Borna Coric) and won the boys’ doubles title at 2013 Wimbledon with Nick Kyrgios.

 

  • Kokkinakis and Kyrgios have entered the men’s doubles here as wild cards. They will play Andrey Golubev/Denis Istomin in the 1st round.
  • Kokkinakis started working with former Wimbledon semifinalist and world No. 19 Jason Stoltenberg in January 2015. Stoltenberg reached the round of 16 at the Australian Open in 1988. His fitness trainer is Rory Sinclair.

* Statistics provided by the International Tennis Federation

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Notes and Quotes from Day 2 of the 2015 Australian Open

Serena Williams

(January 20, 2015) A few of the more off-beat questions and answers from Day 2 news conferences at the Australian Open.

You’ve been well-known to have a lot of off-court activities in your career. Do you think all of that has helped you with your success in tennis or is that a whole other part of your life?

SERENA WILLIAMS: It’s definitely a different part of my life. I’ve always been different and I’ve always liked to plan for my future. I’ve always enjoyed different things. Even when I was younger, I just did so many different things. Inevitably it helps me appreciate what I love to do most, which is play tennis.

 

Your outfit today was pretty awesome.

SERENA WILLIAMS: Thank you.

 

Did you want to do something more adventurous compared to when you were a teenager? Sort of a bold look?

SERENA WILLIAMS: I’ve been more focused on different parts of the body. Throughout the years we went for a more conservative look. This year we really wanted to bring out a powerful woman and a strong woman, like I said. You can be beautiful and powerful at the same time. So what we at Nike wanted to do was to focus on beautiful back. So kind of a lot of my outfits this year are really based on the beauty of and the shape of the back, which a lot of people don’t think about. But it’s so beautiful and powerful on ladies, so we just wanted to focus on that.

 

Do you feel different when you wear something on court more revealing?

SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I definitely feel really different. First of all, I feel like I don’t want to eat too much (smiling). One peanut and I’m going to break the dress, so I try not to eat that much. Other than that, yeah, it depends. Sometimes I’m a little nervous. Yeah, but this one I think is really good. It’s really trendy and young, but at the same time it also has a great message and it’s also really nice. It goes really well. So, yeah.

 

Q. After having ordered the coffee, what are you allowed to order on court and what would you like to order beyond espresso?

SERENA WILLIAMS: Depends. If I’m down, I might want to call my buddy Jack. Maybe that wouldn’t be good (smiling). Yeah, no, I don’t know what’s allowed. A hamburger, French fries.

 

Q. Pizza?

SERENA WILLIAMS: Yeah, I love eating pizza. I can’t have it this fortnight. I don’t want to break my dress (smiling).

 

Q. Do they ever instruct the players that these are the things you can do?

SERENA WILLIAMS: That’s why I asked. I want to be completely honest. Is it okay? I have no idea. I think that might be a new rule in the rule book. We’ll see.

 

Q. Did you watch any of the Kyrgios or Kokkinakis match yesterday?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: It’s great opening matches that they both had, five-setters. The crowd. Could not ask for anything better. I was saying before that they both are very talented. Obviously they have a lot of reasons why they want to perform their best in Australian Open, their home soil. They have a huge support. They have a huge motivation to play their best. I congratulate them both. It’s not easy as an 18-year-old to overcome the challenges and pressure and expectations. Especially Kyrgios, with the amount of attention he got this week, prior to the beginning of the Australian Open. To be able to face that and win the way they both did, it shows the character. So I wish them both well in the rest of the tournament.

 

Q. What do you think of their flair on court?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, that’s what you need to have as a youngster, as a challenger, to all the players basically in the professional world coming up. It seems like, you know, sometimes you’re playing tennis without pressure or without really caring too much for what other people say or who is across the net. That’s what I felt like at that stage of my career. But, you know, there comes a time obviously when people start talking about you more, as they start talking about them. Obviously playing in Australia for them represents something more than playing anywhere else. Nick had a lot of attention in the media. Australia wants to have another big star, top player. I thought Kokkinakis did very well psychologically to win yesterday’s match, facing some match points and so forth. They both have the potential, no doubt about that. It’s still long road ahead of them. I’m sure they’re aware of it.

 

Q. Becoming a parent is a happy time for anybody. Can you share with us your best daddy story you can come up with?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, I can say definitely that it’s the best, most joyful thing that ever has happened to me and my wife. We are so blessed and grateful to have a child. He’s a little angel. They’re not here with me, so I’m trying to stay in touch with them. The technology nowadays helps me to stay connected and see them and watch them on a daily basis. I can’t wait to be with them. Everything that you do as a father is very special. Everything that you see, all the facial expressions, changes on a weekly basis, daily basis, as a matter of fact, is quite remarkable. It’s inexplicable for somebody that hasn’t experienced it before. That is what people were telling me before I became a father. They said, When it happens, you will understand the feeling. I do now. I’m completely fulfilled in every aspect of my life. That gives a whole ‘nother meaning and purpose to my tennis as well. I’m trying to draw that energy and motivation and love that I have for my family and for my boy into the tennis court as well.

 

Q. How would you rate your eye-hand coordination when it comes to diaper changing?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: My wife says I’m pretty good. I can’t say more than that.

 

Q. It was several years ago here you played Roger, you were a young guy. You expressed an opinion you had a good chance to win. What do you think about that younger Novak Djokovic?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: As I said, I understand young players like Kyrgios and Kokkinakis that we’re talking about here, they have this I think necessary flair and energy that I think is directed in a positive way for them to get the crowd on their side, to get themselves rid of any kind of over-respect for the opponent and just be able to perform the best tennis, and then eventually get a big win, as they did, as Kokkinakis did against Gulbis, that is a top 15 player. So it’s a big part of the game and just an approach of a youngster, having that positive drive on the court. This is an ideal place for them to draw that energy and to explore that flair on the court.

 

Q. Serena got a lot of attention for ordering coffee on the court. What can you order on the court? Take-out Chinese? Could you order a beer?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I wasn’t thinking about that, honestly about the Chinese and a beer and the coffee, because I’m not a fan of those three things. But I guess, judging by what she did, it opens up a new chapter of rules I guess on the tennis court. Maybe we need to explore more and see what you’re able and what you’re not able to order. Maybe you can order some delivery service, as you mentioned. I don’t know. Something that comes to your mind. But it’s understandable. Some people can’t live without coffee in the morning. It keeps them going. I guess that helped her in that match. It wouldn’t help me because I’m not a fan of coffee.

 

Q. You would order something gluten free?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Gluten free coffee maybe (smiling).

 

Q. Nadal say he doesn’t feel ready to win. Do you think he’s trying to reduce the pressure on him by saying so?

NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, I don’t know what his intentions are, how he feels. But he is definitely always one of the top favorites in every tournament that he plays. There is no question about it. We always talk prior to the big tournaments, during the first days of the Grand Slams, about who the potential players are for winning the trophy. You know, more or less the same names have been going around for the last seven or eight years. So I don’t think there is any difference in terms of main favorites for this tournament even this year in the Australian Open. There are a few other players that are able to challenge the best.

 

 

Q. Busy with EleVen stuff?

VENUS WILLIAMS: I was busy with EleVen and V Starr and I was in school, so it was a lot, yeah. I’m glad that’s over.

 

Q. Is that something that has sort of continued to drive you, your off-court interests? Does that help you in your tennis to have those other things in your life?

VENUS WILLIAMS: Does it help me with my tennis? I don’t know. I think it maybe makes me more appreciative of tennis because I’ve had to start at the bottom with both of those. Obviously people know your name, but it doesn’t mean that it’s a given. You have to work hard. So I work really hard at both of those businesses. I’m in school because I guess I’m a geek. And other than that, yeah, I love tennis, so it’s always number one.

 

Q. You said a while ago that accounting kind of drove you crazy. What was so hard about accounting?

VENUS WILLIAMS: It’s hard because when you go to school on distance education, you have a ton of tools, but you have to be very disciplined and you have a ton more work. I literally mean an actual ton. It’s very challenging. I don’t like bad grades, so I have to have really good grades. So I put a lot of pressure on myself. It is so much work. It’s a lot of work. So I’m through accounting now, so I feel anything else is going to be a breeze.

 

Q. How are you at school? Is it tougher than tennis?

VENUS WILLIAMS: I love the information. I don’t like to do the work, so… I don’t know. I guess that’s the same thing. Yes, I like matches. Does anyone love practice? Probably not. So it’s probably the same concept.

 

Q. It’s been well-documented you’ve had a few health issues the last couple of years. You seem to have got back into the higher echelons of the game a bit under the radar. Are you feeling very healthy, very good in yourself right now?

VENUS WILLIAMS: You know, I got issues, but so do a lot of people. Everyone has different kind of issues. I deal with my own the best way that I can. I’m creeping closer. I did enter the top 20. But I had some issues. Now I’m back again. I’d like to think that moving forward I have a lot of good days ahead of me in terms of health. I think also learning to manage things, because it’s a mental challenge when you don’t feel well and I think I’m learning to manage that a lot better.

 

Q. Li Na announced her pregnancy. I’m wondering if motherhood is something that you ever think of?

VENUS WILLIAMS: Well, that’s so sweet. I didn’t know that. Maybe there will be twins and a doubles team. I hope I’m still not playing when they’re out (laughter). In any case, I don’t know, I’m still a big kid. I’m still growing up. She’s definitely made the right decision, I think, starting a family. I hope that one day I can get to that level. We’ll see. It’s a big job. It’s like the biggest job in the world. As much responsibility as I’ve taken on in my life, that still seems daunting.

 

Q. 19 Australian Opens now. It’s unprecedented. Are you still having fun? Is it still the same?

LLEYTON HEWITT: Yeah, the motivation, the buzz is still there, absolutely. You know, I love walking through the corridors, the practice sessions on Rod Laver Arena, the week leading up to the slam. The start of the Australian Open, there’s always a real buzz around anyway. But this is one of the things I really miss when I do eventually retire.

 

Q. This isn’t a farewell tour?

LLEYTON HEWITT: I get asked that every day, so…

 

 

Q. Is it weird being here and not being seeded? I think it’s the first time since ’07 or something like that.

VICTORIA AZARENKA: Well, it would be weird if I was playing the whole last year and I wasn’t seeded this year. But since I missed so much, I think it’s kind of what it is. As I said, you just accept that and you just try to do the best as possible. So, you know, if you play against seed or unseeded player, it’s going to be tough. The depth in women’s game I think is really strong right now. You could see from the results from yesterday that it doesn’t really matter. You got to be ready 100% every day no matter who you’re facing.

 

Q. Li Na just said you will definitely win a Master in your career. How encouraging is that to hear from her?

KEI NISHIKORI: Yeah, that’s a good thing to hear from her. It was very sad to see she’s retiring, because I was — she was big, big leadership for especially Asian tennis. I think I’m getting close to — not really — but getting close to her. Hopefully I can win a Masters. For sure that’s going to be my next goal. Hopefully I can come back Grand Slam final again.

 

Q. How long had you been thinking about starting a family with Dennis? In interviews you often talked about wanting to be a housewife. That was on your mind for how long before retirement?

LI NA: I think for my dream is be a housewife. I think every child they learn from the family. I was learn from my mom, so I was feeling the woman has to be like housewife. But I guess I’m not bad to play tennis. So I was feeling, okay, because tennis was take care a lot. I think now is the time to turn back. Yeah.

 

Q. How are you feeling? Do you have any morning sickness or any food cravings?

LI NA: Yes, I do. Until now I still have morning sick. Yeah.

 

Q. Any particular cravings or things you don’t want to eat anymore?

LI NA: No, no. I think I was pretty fine. I was ask my mom what I should care about. She was like, Do whatever you want to do. Don’t care about. She’s strong. So I was, Okay, okay.

 

Q. She’s a she?

LI NA: She or him. I prefer she. (Laughter.)

 

Q. Are you going to teach your kids tennis?

LI NA: I will see if they are interested about tennis or not. Yeah, yeah.

 

Q. If you could have changed one thing in your career, what would that have been?

LI NA: I think I’m perfect for the life. I wouldn’t change anything.

 

Q. Have you heard from any other tennis moms, someone who has reached out to you to congratulate you or give you advice?

LI NA: I got a lot message yesterday, yeah. I got a lot of congrats. So thanks for them.

 

Q. Why did you decide to make the announcement on Rod Laver Arena?

LI NA: I think we decide end of November. Yeah, because I know this is — Melbourne for me is very special area. So I know after that this is big moment for me. So I want to speak to all my fans, my friend. Yeah.

 

Q. Of all the qualities in you that helped you reach and achieve everything you did, what do you want your child to take from you?

LI NA: I try don’t to tell them I was the tennis player, you know. It’s pretty simple. Just like I wish them happy and healthy. That’s it. Yeah.

 

Q. What’s it like to be retired? You once said that you had sort of a lot of beasts within you that you got out on the tennis court and you felt all this pressure to win. What has it been like to leave tennis behind? Are you a different person now?

LI NA: I’m still the same. (Smiling.) Only not with tennis racquet anymore. It’s for me I decide because I cannot play anymore. I still love tennis, so that’s why I always doing the job. Yeah, of course right now I don’t have to worry about win or lose every day. Yeah, it’s less pressure. Yeah.

 

Q. If you could choose, would you still choose tennis as your career?

LI NA: If I have next life, I will still choose tennis, I will still choose the famous Asian as well.

 

Q. Why will you not immediately tell your child that you were a tennis player?

LI NA: I think tennis is my job, it’s not their job, you know. I think everyone has personality. Yeah.

 

Q. You have been the top Asian player for a long time, and in the men’s side, Kei Nishikori got very close to win Grand Slam last year. After you announced your retirement, he said he got a lot of motivation or confidence from you. So you give him any advices like Asian player, what kind of advice would you give him?

LI NA: I saw him play final on TV, of course. I think he’s amazing player. It’s not easy to be in the top. I know how hard working he has. So I will believe he can win Grand Slam. Seriously. Yeah.

 

Q. Will Dennis be changing diapers with you?

LI NA: No, no. The guys, it’s strange, I know how is another guy, but he never change, you know. Yeah.

 

Q. Just your thoughts on the players from China in the draw at the moment. Obviously a few defeats today. What are your thoughts?

LI NA: I even didn’t saw the match. Sorry about that, because I was like make me super busy. Yeah.

 

 

Q. Do you have a special place for your trophy at home?

STAN WAWRINKA: I already said it’s in a safe. It’s not at home yet.

 

Q. So you can’t watch it?

STAN WAWRINKA: No, I’m traveling all the year, so I don’t have time for that. (Smiling.)

 

Q. I have a question about your favorite football team. Where do you stand on Liverpool letting Stevie Gerrard go?

CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: I’m obviously sad. I think Stevie has done so much for the team over the years. He’s a legend. I think if that’s what he thinks is the right time, I have to support that.

 

Q. But you want him to stay?

CAROLINE WOZNIACKI: Yeah. But at the same time he had a talk with the manager and said that maybe he wasn’t going to be playing as much. Yeah, I’m a little sad. I don’t know. I’m going to have my Stevie G jerseys hanging somewhere. Unfortunately he won’t be playing there anymore. I’ll have to make a trip probably to L.A. to have a look again. But, yeah, 17 seasons, 17 years, it’s a long time.

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Top Seeds Williams and Djokovic Lead Charge into Australian Open Second Round

Djokovic melbourne

(January 20, 2015) World No. 1s Serena Williams and Novak Djokovic lead the charge on Tuesday in Melbourne, easily advancing to the second round of the Australian Open.

Serena Williams had an easy 6-0, 6-4 win over Alison Van Uytvanck in the night session. Despite a dominant win, the 18-time major winner admitted to nerves in the early rounds of majors.

“I just focus on holding serve in general, and I focus on breaking,” Williams said. “So I don’t focus on necessarily my nerves. I just think, Okay, I want to hold serve and I want to break. That’s all I do. That kind of helps me to get over it.”

She said the pressure is different in a final versus a first round. “Yeah, usually when you get to a final, you want to win. I just want to do the best I can. Yeah, I think it’s different because at least when you’re in a final, you have a little momentum. When you’re in a first round, you don’t have momentum. Usually the nerves aren’t as bad in general for me in a final. There’s been finals where I’ve been really, really tight.”

“If I could get to 19(th major) in Australia that would be amazing,” said the five –time Australian Open champion.

Meanwhile, four-time Australian Open champion Novak Djokovic had an easy time with No. 116 Aljaz Bedene 6-3, 6-2, 6-4 in his first-round match. Djokovic had been under-the-weather over the past two weeks.

“Just glad to be back competing on the highest level in tennis,” said the Serb. “Australian Open has been very dear to me. My most successful Grand Slam. I’ve been playing some of my best tennis throughout career on these courts. Trying to soak up every joyful moment on the court. Obviously the start was a bit slower performance, weaker performance, from my side. He had a couple of breakpoints. The match could have gone a different way in the first set. Never played him. Watched him only once. He did surprise me. I had a difficult time to read his serve. The courts are playing a little bit faster than they were the last two years than they were in previous years. So if you have a big serve, know how to use it, it’s a big advantage on these courts. He’s a good player obviously. He qualified. Reached the finals in Chennai. Qualified again here. He felt confident. He had nothing to lose. On the other hand, I managed to stay tough, overcome some kind of challenges that I faced in the beginning of the match. I played much more comfortably in the rest of the match.”

Defending Australian Open champion Stan Wawrinka began his quest to with a 6-1, 6-4, 6-2 win over No. 100-ranked Marsel Ilhan, in less than 90 minutes.

“It’s great, bringing me a lot of memories from last year,” Wawrinka said of his return. “It was great to come back here feeling happy, happy with my game.”

“Happy. First Grand Slam never easy, but happy the way I played today. I feel great to come in the court. I play some good tennis and I have confidence with my game in general. That’s what I did today. It was not so hot. A little bit humid, a little bit windy. But, yeah, it was a good match.”

 

Other men advancing on Tuesday were No. 5 Kei Nishikori, No. 8 Milos Raonic, No. 9 David Ferrer, No. 12 Feliciano Lopez saved 3 match points in defeating Denis Kudla 3-6, 6-2, 4-6, 6-2, 10-8, while No. 13 Roberto Bautista Agut, No. 18 Gilles Simon and No. 19 John Isner also advanced. Upsets on the day included No. 16 Fabio Fognini, No. 21 Alexandr Dolgopolov, No. 25 Julien Benneteau and No. 27 Pablo Cuevas.

Two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka making a comeback after injuries sidelined her for most of 2014, defeated Sloane Stephens 6-3, 6-2.

Seeded winners included No. 4 Petra Kvitova, No. 6 Agnieszka Radwanska, No. 8 Caroline Wozniacki, No. 11 Dominika Cibulkova and No. 18 Venus Williams. Upsets on the day included No. 12 Flavia Pennetta, No. 13 Andrea Petkovic and No. 15 Jelena Jankovic. Monday saw 8 women’s seeds bite the dust.

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2015 Australian Open Day 2 Men’s Match Notes and Previews

AustralianOpenLogo

2015 AUSTRALIAN OPEN

DAY 2 MEN’S NOTES

Tuesday 20 January

1st Round Top Half

 

 

Featured matches

 

No. 1 Novak Djokovic (SRB) v (Q) Aljaz Bedene (SLO)
No. 4 Stan Wawrinka (SUI) v Marsel Ilhan (TUR)
No. 5 Kei Nishikori (JPN) v Nicolas Almagro (ESP)

No. 8 Milos Raonic (CAN) v (Q) Illya Marchenko (UKR)

No. 9 David Ferrer (ESP) v Thomaz Bellucci (BRA)

No. 17 Gael Monfils (FRA) v (WC) Lucas Pouille (FRA)

No. 18 Gilles Simon (FRA) v Robin Haase (NED)

Lleyton Hewitt (AUS) v (WC) Zhang Ze (CHN)

On court today…

  • Reigning Australian Open champion Stan Wawrinka begins his title defence today in the second match on Rod Laver Arena. The Swiss No. 2 will look to avoid becoming just the 3rd defending Australian Open champion to lose in the 1st round when he takes on Turkey’s Marsel Ilhan. If Ilhan is to take the scalp of Wawrinka, he will need to end a run of 11 straight Tour-level defeats to Top 100 players.

 

  • Four-time Australian Open champion Novak Djokovic will be looking to preserve his record against players ranked outside the Top 100 when he faces No. 116 Aljaz Bedene on Rod Laver Arena. Djokovic, who is bidding to become the 2nd man in history to win 5 or more Australian Open titles this year, has never lost to a player ranked outside the Top 100 at a Grand Slam.

 

  • Lleyton Hewitt, the only Australian man in action today, takes centre stage by opening the night session on Rod Laver Arena. The 2-time Grand Slam champion is making a record 19th consecutive Australian Open appearance today against wild card Zhang Ze, which puts him in 5th place for the most appearances at a single Grand Slam event. Hewitt’s opponent could make a name for himself – a win today would see Zhang become the first Chinese man to reach the 2nd round at a major since 1959.

 

  • Emerging talents Kei Nishikori and Milos Raonic are also in action today. Nishikori, the 2014 US Open finalist, plays Nicolas Almagro first on Margaret Court Arena, while Raonic plays qualifier Illya Marchenko in the second match on Hisense Arena.

NOVAK DJOKOVIC (SRB) v (Q) ALJAZ BEDENE (SLO)

Head-to-head: first meeting

 

                   DJOKOVIC                                      v                                        BEDENE

 

27                                           Age                                           25

1                              ATP Ranking (19 Jan)                            116

48                                         Titles                                          0

180-33                      Career Grand Slam Record                        0-6

43-6                          Australian Open Record                           0-2

606-141                               Career Record                                26-34

392-82                          Career Record – Hard                           17-14

2-1                                    2015 Record                                    4-1

2-1                               2015 Record – Hard                              4-1

22-8                          Career Five-Set Record                           0-0

3                          Comebacks from 0-2 Down                          0

172-102                        Career Tiebreak Record                         11-10

1-1                             2015 Tiebreak Record                            2-0

 

  • DJOKOVIC is looking to become the second man in history to win 5 or more Australian Open titles. Roy Emerson is the only man who has won more than 5 titles in Melbourne

 

  • Djokovic won his 7th Grand Slam title at Wimbledon last year, defeating Roger Federer in the final. He is a 4-time Australian Open champion having won the titles here in 2008 (d. Jo-Wilfried Tonga), 2011 (d. Andy Murray), 2012 (d. Rafael Nadal) and 2013 (d. Murray).

 

  • Last year here Djokovic’s streak of 14 consecutive Grand Slam semifinal appearances was ended by Stan Wawrinka in the quarterfinals. Elsewhere at the majors in 2014, Djokovic lost to Nadal in the final at Roland Garros and to Kei Nishikori in the semifinals at the US Open.

 

  • The Australian Open is the only Grand Slam event where Djokovic has lost in the 1st round. He fell in the 1st round on his Grand Slam debut as a qualifier here in 2005 (l. Marat Safin) and again in 2006 (l. Paul Goldstein).

 

  • Djokovic won 7 titles in 8 finals in 2014 and in so doing finished the year with a prize money haul of $14,269,462. It was the 4th straight year he had earned over $12 million. He finished the year ranked No. 1 for the 3rd time after winning his 3rd consecutive ATP World Tour Finals crown.

 

  • Djokovic warmed up for the 2015 Australian Open by reaching the quarterfinals at Doha (l. Ivo Karlovic).

 

  • The last time Djokovic lost to a player ranked as low as No. 116 today’s opponent was at 2010 Belgrade when he retired against Filip Krajinovic due to allergy and illness. He has never lost to a player ranked outside the Top 100 at a Grand Slam.

 

  • Djokovic is on a 35-match winning streak against qualifiers. The last time he lost to a qualifier was to Kevin Anderson at 2008 AMS Miami. He has never lost to a qualifier at a Grand Slam.

 

  • Djokovic started working with 2-time Australian Open champion Boris Becker in 2014. He has also been coached by Marian Vajda since June 2006. His wider team includes physios Miljan Amanovic and Gebhard Phil-Gritsch.

 

  • Qualifier BEDENE is looking to record his first Grand Slam match-win today in his 7th appearance at a major.

 

  • Bedene lost in the 1st round on both his previous Australian Open appearances – in 2013 (l. Benjamin Becker) and 2014 (l. Stephane Robert). He failed to qualify here in 2012.

 

  • As No. 7 seed Bedene defeated Guido Andreozzi (ARG) 57 64 64, Tomislav Brkic (BIH) 60 76(2) and Michal Przysiezny (POL) 64 64 in the 3 rounds of qualifying.

 

  • In 2014 Bedene’s best results were reaching the quarterfinals at Chennai (l. Stan Wawrinka) and the 3rd round as a qualifier at Miami-1000 (l. Becker) – the only time he won back-to-back Tour-level matches all year. He also won the Todi Challenger (ITA) (d. Marton Fucsovics).

 

  • Bedene played at 2 Grand Slams last year – losing in the 1st round at the Australian Open and as a lucky loser at Wimbledon (l. Kevin Anderson). He failed to qualify for the US Open and didn’t attempt to qualify for Roland Garros.

 

  • Bedene warmed up for the Australian Open by reaching his first Tour-level final as a qualifier at Chennai (l. Stan Wawrinka). He defeated No. 14 Feliciano Lopez in the 2nd round and No. 15 Roberto Bautista Agut in the semifinals to record back-to-back match-wins over Top 20 players for the first time in his career.

 

  • Bedene’s victory over No. 14 Lopez at Chennai is the best win of his career. He is looking for his first victory over a Top 10 player in his 6th attempt.

 

  • Bedene is coached by James Davidson in London. His physical trainer is Martin Skinner.

 

  1. 4 STAN WAWRINKA (SUI) v MARSEL ILHAN (TUR)

Head-to-head: first meeting

 

WAWRINKA                                     v                                          ILHAN

 

29                                           Age                                           27

4                              ATP Ranking (19 Jan)                            100

8                                          Titles                                          0

82-38                       Career Grand Slam Record                        5-7

23-8                          Australian Open Record                           1-2

342-216                               Career Record                                33-37

177-116                          Career Record – Hard                           15-22

4-0                                    2015 Record                                    0-0

4-0                               2015 Record – Hard                              0-0

21-16                          Career Five-Set Record                           2-2

6                          Comebacks from 0-2 Down                          1

124-143                        Career Tiebreak Record                         11-12

  • 2015 Tiebreak Record                                   0-0

 

  • Defending champion WAWRINKA has never lost in the 1st round here. This is his 10th Australian Open appearance and his 40th Grand Slam overall.

 

  • The last time Wawrinka lost in the 1st round at a Grand Slam was at 2014 Roland Garros, when as No. 3 seed he was defeated by Guillermo Garcia-Lopez.

 

  • Wawrinka is looking to avoid becoming the 3rd defending Australian Open champion to lose in the 1st round. Among all 4 Grand Slam events, a defending champion has lost in the 1st round 4 times, including twice at the Australian Open:

                     Defending Grand Slam champions losing in 1st round (Open Era)

Year/Event Defending Champion 1st round result
1977 (Dec) Australian Open Roscoe Tanner l. Chris Lewis 36 63 62 16 64
1997 Australian Open Boris Becker l. Carlos Moya 57 76 36 61 64
1999 US Open Patrick Rafter l. Cedric Pioline 46 46 75 63 1-0 ret. (shoulder injury)
2003 Wimbledon Lleyton Hewitt l. Ivo Karlovic 16 76 63 64

 

  • Last year here Wawrinka broke through to win his first Grand Slam title in his first Grand Slam final             (d. Rafael Nadal 63 62 36 63). He was the first player to defeat the No. 1 and No. 2 seeds en route to a Grand Slam title since Sergei Bruguera won 1993 Roland Garros.

 

  • Wawrinka had an outstanding 2014 season. As well as winning his first Grand Slam title, he won his first Masters-1000 title at Monte Carlo (d. Roger Federer) and lifted the trophy at Chennai (d. Edouard Roger-Vasselin). He was also a member of the Swiss team that won the Davis Cup title for the first time in its history. Wawrinka recorded a career-high ranking of No. 3 following his Australian Open triumph and plays here at No. 4.

 

  • Elsewhere at the Grand Slams in 2014, Wawrinka reached the quarterfinals at both Wimbledon
    (l. Federer) and the US Open (l. Kei Nishikori).

 

  • Wawrinka warmed up for the Australian Open by successfully defending his title at Chennai. He defeated qualifier Aljaz Bedene in the final. It was his 8th career title and 3rd at Chennai, having also won there in 2011 and 2014.

 

  • The last time Wawrinka lost to a player ranked as low as No. 100 today’s opponent was against No. 103 Tatsuma Ito at 2014 Tokyo. He has lost twice to a player ranked outside the Top 100 at a Grand Slam – to No. 163 Nicolas Lapentti at the 2009 US Open and to No. 116 Simone Bolelli at 2011 Wimbledon.

 

  • Wawrinka is currently working with Magnus Norman, who reached the semifinals here in 2000.

 

  • ILHAN is bidding to reach the 2nd round here and equal his best Grand Slam performance. He has reached the 2nd round at all 4 Grand Slam events.

 

  • Ilhan has played at 8 Grand Slams (including this oen) since making his debut at the 2009 US Open. He has played at the Australian Open twice before – losing in the 2nd round as a lucky loser in 2010 (l. Fernando Gonzalez) and as a direct acceptance in the 1st round in 2011 (l. Mikhail Youzhny). He failed to qualify for the Australian Open in 2009, 2012-14.

 

  • Ilhan’s loss to No. 10 Youzhny at the 2011 Australian Open is his only previous meeting with a Top 10 player. He is currently on an 11-match losing streak against Top 100 players. The last time he defeated a player in the Top 100 was when he defeated No. 78 Philipp Petzschner at 2011 Hamburg.

 

  • Prior to coming here, Ilhan fell in the final round of qualifying for Brisbane (l. Marius Copil).

 

  • In 2014 Ilhan’s best results came on the Challenger Circuit. He won the title at Kazan (RUS) (d. Michael Berrer) and finished as runner-up at Astana (KAZ) and Mouilleron Le Captif (FRA). He qualified for 5 Tour-level tournaments, losing in the 1st round at all of them. He finished the year ranked No. 104 – his highest year-end ranking since 2010.

 

  • At the Grand Slams in 2014, Ilhan lost to Denis Kudla in the 1st round as a qualifier at Wimbledon, and failed to qualify for the Australian Open, Roland Garros and the US Open.

 

  • Ilhan is Turkey’s first representative in a Grand Slam singles tournament. Turkish woman Ipek Senoglu is the only other player from Turkey to feature at a Grand Slam, having played doubles between 2004 and 2011.

 

  • Ilhan is coached by Alberto Lopez Nunez.

 

  1. 5 KEI NISHIKORI (JPN) v NICOLAS ALMAGRO (ESP)

Head-to-head: tied 1-1

2011     Kuala Lumpur                Hard (I)             QF        Nishikori           67(5) 64 64

2013     Tokyo                           Hard (O)            QF        Almagro            76(2) 57 63

 

A 3rd career meeting between the 2 players. Both of their previous meetings have required a deciding set.

 

NISHIKORI                                      v                                      ALMAGRO

 

25                                           Age                                           29

5                              ATP Ranking (19 Jan)                             69

7                                          Titles                                         12

37-21                       Career Grand Slam Record                       56-38

12-5                          Australian Open Record                          15-9

191-106                               Career Record                               347-224

137-72                          Career Record – Hard                           89-92

2-1                                    2015 Record                                    0-1

2-1                               2015 Record – Hard                              0-1

10-2                          Career Five-Set Record                          13-11

2                          Comebacks from 0-2 Down                          2

61-42                         Career Tiebreak Record                       136-152

1-2                             2015 Tiebreak Record                            0-1

 

  • This is NISHIKORI’S 6th Australian Open appearance and his 22nd Grand Slam overall.

 

  • Nishikori’s best result here is reaching the quarterfinals as No. 24 seed in 2012 (l. Andy Murray). He was the first Japanese man to reach the quarterfinals at Melbourne Park in the Open Era.

 

  • At the 2014 US Open, Nishikori became the first Asian male to contest a Grand Slam final after defeating three Top 10 players – Milos Raonic, Stan Wawrinka and Novak Djokovic – in consecutive matches before falling to Marin Cilic in the title match.

 

  • Also in Grand Slam play last year Nishikori reached the round of 16 at the Australian Open (l. Rafael Nadal) and Wimbledon (l. Milos Raonic) and fell in the 1st round to Martin Klizan at Roland Garros.

 

  • Nishikori had a career-best year in 2014. As well as reaching his first Grand Slam final at the US Open, he won 4 titles – at Memphis (d. Ivo Karlovic), Barcelona (d. Santiago Giraldo), Kuala Lumpur (d. Julien Benneteau) and Tokyo (d. Raonic) and finished as runner-up in his first Masters-1000 final at Madrid
    (l. Nadal). It was the first time he had won multiple titles in a season. 6 of Nishikori’s 7 career titles have come on a hard court.

 

  • Nishikori warmed up for the Australian Open by reaching the semifinals at Brisbane, where he lost to Raonic 67(4) 76(4) 76(4). He also reached the doubles final alongside Alexandr Dolgopolov, losing to Jamie Murray/John Peers in the final.

 

  • Nishikori has won 9 of his last 10 matches against Spanish opposition. His only defeat to a Spanish player in that time was when he retired while trailing Nadal 26 64 3-0 in the final at 2014 Madrid-1000.

 

  • Nishikori is the highest-ranked Japanese man in ATP World Tour Rankings history (since 1973). He had the nickname ‘Project 45’ as a major goal was to get him to No. 45 in the rankings, which would be one spot better than the highest by any Japanese man (Shuzo Matsuoka). He plays here on his career-high ranking of No. 5.

 

  • Nishikori is coached by Dante Bottini and Michael Chang. Chang finished as runner-up at the 1996 Australian Open, losing in the final to Boris Becker.

 

  • ALMAGRO is bidding to record his first Grand Slam match-win since 2013 Wimbledon.

 

 

 

  • Almagro is contesting just his 2nd Tour-level match since retiring in the 1st round at 2014 Roland Garros with a left foot injury. He underwent surgery on his left foot on 30 June and didn’t play again for the rest of the season, making his Tour-level return at 2015 Sydney, where he fell to Pablo Cuevas in the 1st round. He also played at the 2015 Abu Dhabi Exhibition event, losing to Stan Wawrinka and defeating Feliciano Lopez.

 

  • Almagro played 10 tournaments in 2014 before injury cut short his season. His best result last year was reaching the final at Houston (l. Fernando Verdasco) and the semifinals at Vina del Mar, Buenos Aires and Barcelona.

 

  • Almagro is a former world No. 9. He dropped as low as No. 73 in the rankings in November – his lowest ranking since April 2006. He plays here ranked No. 69.

 

  • Almagro’s best Australian Open – and Grand Slam – result is reaching the quarterfinals in 2013 (l. David Ferrer). He also reached the quarterfinals at Roland Garros in 2008, 2010 and 2012, losing to Rafael Nadal on all 3 occasions. He missed last year’s Australian Open with a shoulder injury.

 

  • Almagro has lost in the 1st round in each of his last 2 Grand Slam appearances – at the 2013 US Open (l. Denis Istomin) and at 2014 Roland Garros (l. Jack Sock). This is his 10th Australian Open and his 39th appearance at a Grand Slam.

 

  • Almagro has won just 3 of his 36 career matches against Top 5 opposition. His only victories have come against No. 4 Marat Safin at 2005 AMS Rome, No. 5 Robin Soderling at 2010 Bastad and No. 1 Nadal at 2014 Barcelona – all three victories came on clay.

 

  • Almagro is bidding to record just his 3rd Tour-level match-win on a hard court since reaching the semifinals at 2013 Valencia. His only wins in that time came against Ivan Dodig at 2013 Paris-1000 and Sam Querrey at 2014 Miami-1000.

 

  • Almagro’s best surface is clay. Clay is the only surface on which he has a positive career win-loss record. All 12 of his career singles titles have come on clay.

 

  • Almagro started working with coach Samuel Lopez in January 2012. His fitness trainer is Jose Luis Molina.

 

  1. 8 MILOS RAONIC (CAN) v (Q) ILLYA MARCHENKO (UKR)

Head-to-head: first meeting

 

Marchenko is bidding to become the lowest-ranked player to defeat Raonic at a Grand Slam since No. 181 Lleyton Hewitt at the 2012 Australian Open.

 

He is also looking to become the lowest-ranked player to defeat Raonic at Tour-level since No. 168 Jack Sock at 2013 Memphis [NB Raonic lost to No. 288 Grzegorz Panfil at the 2014 Hopman Cup].

 

RAONIC                                        v                                    MARCHENKO

 

24                                           Age                                           27

8                              ATP Ranking (19 Jan)                            144

6                                          Titles                                          0

35-16                       Career Grand Slam Record                        4-8

10-4                          Australian Open Record                           2-3

177-88                               Career Record                                37-48

128-53                          Career Record – Hard                           32-33

3-1                                    2015 Record                                    0-0

3-1                               2015 Record – Hard                              0-0

4-3                           Career Five-Set Record                           1-3

0                          Comebacks from 0-2 Down                          1

118-69                        Career Tiebreak Record                         24-13

5-1                             2015 Tiebreak Record                            0-0

 

  • RAONIC is bidding to maintain his record of always having reached the 2nd round here.

 

  • Last year here as No. 11 seed Raonic reached the 3rd round (l. Grigor Dimitrov). This is his 5th Australian Open appearance and his 17th Grand Slam overall.

 

  • Raonic’s best Australian Open result is reaching the round of 16 on his debut here as a qualifier in 2011 (l. David Ferrer) and as No. 13 seed in 2013 (l. Roger Federer).

 

  • Raonic’s best Grand Slam result is reaching the semifinals as No. 8 seed at 2014 Wimbledon (l. Roger Federer). He became the first Canadian man to reach a Grand Slam semifinal after Robert Powell at 1908 Wimbledon. He reached a career-high ranking of No. 6 as a result but plays here ranked No. 8.

 

  • Also in Grand Slam play in 2014 Raonic reached the 3rd round at the Australian Open, the quarterfinals at Roland Garros (l. Novak Djokovic) and the round of 16 at the US Open (l. Kei Nishikori).

 

  • In 2014, Raonic won the title at Washington (d. Vasek Pospisil) and finished as runner-up in his second Masters-1000 final at Paris (l. Djokovic) and at Tokyo (l. Nishikori). All 6 of Raonic’s career titles have come on a hard court.

 

  • Raonic has won 17 of his 20 career matches against qualifiers. His only defeats to qualifiers came against Igor Andreev at 2010 Kuala Lumpur, Benjamin Becker at 2012 Newport and Ricardas Berankis at 2014 Moscow.

 

  • Raonic warmed up for the Australian Open by reaching the final as No. 3 seed at Brisbane, losing to Roger Federer 64 67(2) 64. It was Federer’s 1000th career match-win.

 

  • Raonic became the first Canadian to be seeded in the men’s singles at a Grand Slam event in the Open Era at 2011 Roland Garros. He plays here seeded No. 8.

 

  • Raonic was born in Montenegro but moved to Canada in 1994. He started playing tennis aged 8.

 

  • Raonic started working with Ivan Ljubicic at 2013 Roland Garros. Ljubicic reached the quarterfinals here in 2006.

 

  • Qualifier MARCHENKO is bidding to reach the 2nd round and equal his best Grand Slam result.
  • Marchenko’s best Grand Slam performance is reaching the 2nd round on his Grand Slam debut at the Australian Open in 2010 (l. Nikolay Davydenko) and in 2011 (l. Andy Murray). He also reached the 2nd round at 2010 Wimbledon (l. Gilles Simon) and as a qualifier at the 2014 US Open (l. Marin Cilic).

 

  • Marchenko has lost in the 1st round on 5 of his 9 previous Grand Slam appearances. This is his 4th appearance at the Australian Open but first since 2012. He didn’t attempt to qualify in 2013 and failed to qualify in 2014.

 

  • Marchenko has qualified for the 2nd consecutive Grand Slam event as No. 26 seed after defeating Benjamin Mitchell (AUS) 76(4) 64, Marton Fucsovics (HUN) 36 64 97 and Lukasz Kubot (POL) 62 62 in the 3 rounds of qualifying. He failed to qualify at the first 3 Grand Slams in 2014, before reaching the 2nd round as a qualifier at the US Open.

 

  • Marchenko warmed up for the Australian Open at Chennai, where he fell in the final round of qualifying to N. Vijay Sundar Prashanth.

 

  • Marchenko played mainly on the Challenger circuit in 2014. His best result was winning the title at Brescia (ITA) (d. Farrukh Dustov). He also reached Challenger quarterfinals at New Delhi (IND), Irving (USA), Savannah (USA), Winnetka (USA), Izmir (TUR) and Bratislava (SVK).

 

  • In 2010, Marchenko finished in the year-end Top 100 for the first time. He recorded a career-high ranking of No. 67 in July that year after reaching his second Tour-level semifinal at St. Petersburg (l. Mikhail Kukushkin). He plays here ranked No. 144.

 

  • Marchenko has yet to win a set from a Top 10 player in 3 previous attempts. The highest-ranked player that Marchenko has defeated is No. 28 Ernests Gulbis at 2010 Washington.

 

  • Marchenko has played Davis Cup for Ukraine since 2008. He helped Ukraine defeat Romania 3-1 to reach September’s World Group play-offs, where they lost to Belgium 3-2 at a neutral venue in Estonia.

 

  • Marchenko is coached by Tibor Toth.

 

  1. 9 DAVID FERRER (ESP) v THOMAZ BELLUCCI (BRA)

Head-to-head: Ferrer leads 5-1

2010     Acapulco                      Clay (O)            R16                  Ferrer                64 61

2010     Barcelona                     Clay (O)            QF                    Ferrer                64 60

2010     Shanghai-1000              Hard (O)            R32                  Ferrer                76(7) 63

2012     Monte Carlo-1000          Clay (O)            R32                  Bellucci             63 62

2014     Rio de Janeiro               Clay (O)            QF                    Ferrer                46 63 63

2014     Valencia                        Hard (O)            QF                    Ferrer                61 62

 

A 7th career meeting between the 2 players. Bellucci has never taken a set off Ferrer on a hard court.

 

FERRER                                        v                                      BELLUCCI

 

32                                           Age                                           27

10                             ATP Ranking (19 Jan)                             65

22                                         Titles                                          3

121-48                      Career Grand Slam Record                       17-23

32-12                         Australian Open Record                           4-6

607-295                               Career Record                               136-138

275-154                          Career Record – Hard                           45-73

5-0                                    2015 Record                                    0-1

5-0                               2015 Record – Hard                              0-1

19-11                          Career Five-Set Record                           7-7

4                          Comebacks from 0-2 Down                          2

136-123                        Career Tiebreak Record                         67-66

2-2                             2015 Tiebreak Record                            0-1

 

  • FERRER is contesting his 13th successive Australian Open and 49th straight Grand Slam.

 

  • Ferrer has not lost in the 1st round at a Grand Slam event since 2005 Wimbledon, where as No. 17 seed he lost to Guillermo Garcia-Lopez. He fell in the 1st round here on his Grand Slam debut in 2003 (l. Hyung-Taik Lee) and again in 2005 (l. David Nalbandian).

 

  • Ferrer’s best Grand Slam result is reaching the final as No. 4 seed at 2013 Roland Garros, where he lost in straight sets to Nadal. At 31 years 68 days, he was the 4th oldest man to reach the Roland Garros final.

 

  • Ferrer’s best Australian Open performance is reaching the semifinals as No. 7 seed in 2011 (l. Andy Murray) and as No. 4 seed in 2013 (l. Novak Djokovic).

 

  • Last year here Ferrer reached the quarterfinals as No. 3 seed, losing to Tomas Berdych. Elsewhere at the Grand Slams in 2014, Ferrer reached the quarterfinals at Roland Garros (l. Rafael Nadal), the 3rd round at the US Open (l. Gilles Simon) and the 2nd round at Wimbledon (l. Andrey Kuznetsov).

 

  • Ferrer warmed up for the Australian Open by winning the title at Doha (d. Berdych). 9 of his 22 career singles titles have come on a hard court.

 

  • Ferrer finished 2014 at No. 10 in the rankings – his lowest year-end finish since 2009. He won one title in 2014 – the fewest titles he has won in one year since 2006 – at Buenos Aires (d. Fabio Fognini). He also finished as runner-up at Hamburg (l. Leonardo Mayer), Cincinnati-1000 (l. Roger Federer) and Vienna
    (l. Andy Murray).

 

  • Ferrer plays here seeded No. 9 – his lowest Grand Slam seeding since the 2010 US Open. He has been seeded at every Grand Slam event since 2005 Roland Garros.

 

  • Since making his debut at the 2003 Australian Open, Ferrer has played at every Grand Slam He is in 5th place for the most consecutive majors played in the Open Era behind Federer (61), Wayne Ferreira (56), Stefan Edberg (54) and Feliciano Lopez (52) with 49 [see Preview page 4].

 

  • Ferrer started working with Francisco Fogues in 2015.

 

  • Lefthander BELLUCCI is bidding to reach the 2nd round and equal his best Australian Open result.

 

  • Bellucci’s best Australian Open performance is reaching the 2nd round in 2010 (l. Andy Roddick), 2011
    (l. Jan Hernych), 2012 (l. Gael Monfils) and as a qualifier in 2014 (l. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga). This is his 7th consecutive appearance at Melbourne Park and his 24th Grand Slam overall.

 

  • Bellucci’s best Grand Slam result is reaching the round of 16 as No. 24 seed at 2010 Roland Garros
    (l. Rafael Nadal). He was the first Brazilian to reach that stage of a major since Gustavo Kuerten at 2004 Roland Garros.

 

  • At the Grand Slams in 2014, Bellucci reached the 2nd round as a qualifier at the Australian Open, and as a direct acceptance at Roland Garros (l. Fabio Fognini) and the US Open (l. Stan Wawrinka). He failed to qualify for Wimbledon.

 

  • Bellucci’s best result in 2014 was a semifinal finish as a wild card at Sao Paulo (l. Federico Delbonis). He reached 5 further quarterfinals to finish the year ranked No. 65, climbing 60 places from the previous year when he struggled with an abdominal injury.

 

  • Prior to coming here, Bellucci lost to Jiri Vesely in the 1st round at Auckland.

 

  • Bellucci is a former Top 30 player, reaching a career-high ranking of No. 21 in July 2010. He has won 3 Tour-level titles, all of which have come on clay, at Gstaad in 2009 (d. Andreas Beck) and 2012 (d. Janko Tipsarevic) and at 2010 Santiago (d. Juan Monaco). Clay is the only surface on which he has a positive win-loss record.

 

  • Bellucci is bidding to end a 7-match losing streak against Top 10 opposition. He has a 5-21 win-loss record against Top 10 players. His best career win came against 4 Andy Murray at 2011 Madrid-1000.

 

  • Bellucci won both of his singles rubbers, including the decisive fourth rubber against Roberto Bautista Agut 64 36 63 62, to help Brazil defeat Spain 3-1 in September’s Davis Cup World Group play-offs in Sao Paulo in September. The result saw Brazil return to the World Group and Spain relegated to zone group competition for the first time since 1996.

 

  • Bellucci was a member of the ITF International Junior Touring Team in 2004, supported by the Grand Slam Development Fund.

 

  • Bellucci is currently without a coach.

 

  1. 17 GAEL MONFILS (FRA) v (WC) LUCAS POUILLE (FRA)

Head-to-head: first meeting

 

Monfils and Pouille go head-to-head in the only all-French clash in the opening round of the men’s draw.

 

Pouille is bidding to record his first Tour-level victory over a fellow Frenchman. He has lost all 4 of his previous meetings against French opposition.

 

MONFILS                                       v                                       POUILLE

 

28                                           Age                                           20

19                             ATP Ranking (19 Jan)                            117

5                                          Titles                                          0

67-32                       Career Grand Slam Record                        1-3

16-9                          Australian Open Record                           0-1

313-186                               Career Record                                  6-9

193-110                          Career Record – Hard                             5-5

0-0                                    2015 Record                                    3-1

0-0                               2015 Record – Hard                              3-1

12-9                          Career Five-Set Record                           0-0

1                          Comebacks from 0-2 Down                          0

126-91                        Career Tiebreak Record                           3-3

0-0                             2015 Tiebreak Record                            0-0

 

  • MONFILS is making his 10th appearance at the Australian Open and his 33rd appearance at a Grand Slam overall.

 

  • Last year here Monfils reached the 3rd round (l. Rafael Nadal). His best result at Melbourne Park came in 2009, when he reached the round of 16 before retiring with a right wrist injury when trailing compatriot Gilles Simon 64 26 61.

 

  • Monfils’ best Grand Slam result is a semifinal finish at 2008 Roland Garros, where ranked No. 59 he lost to Roger Federer 62 57 63 75.

 

  • In Grand Slam play in 2014 Monfils reached the quarterfinals at Roland Garros (l. Andy Murray) and the US Open (l. Federer), the 3rd round at the Australian Open and the 2nd round at Wimbledon
    (l. Jiri Vesely). He led Federer by two-sets-to-love and held 2 match points before eventually losing their US Open quarterfinal.

 

  • Monfils did not play an Australian Open warm-up event for the first time since 2011. He is contesting his first event since the 2014 Davis Cup Final.

 

  • Monfils won all 4 of the Davis Cup singles rubbers he contested in 2014 to help France reach the final in Lille, where they lost 3-1 to Switzerland. Monfils upset Federer 61 64 63 in the second rubber to extend his 6-match winning streak in Davis Cup. Monfils has a 10-2 win-loss record in Davis Cup singles rubbers.

 

  • Monfils’ best result in 2014 was winning his 2nd title at Montpellier (d. Richard Gasquet). 4 of his 5 career titles have come on hard courts at 2009 Metz, 2010 and 2014 Montpellier and 2011 Stockholm. Also in 2014 he finished as runner-up at Doha (l. Nadal) and reached the semifinals at Bucharest and Metz.

 

  • Monfils finished 2014 ranked No. 18 – his highest year-end ranking since 2011. He plays here ranked No. 19.

 

  • Monfils narrowly missed out on achieving the Junior Grand Slam in 2004 after winning the Australian Open, Roland Garros and Wimbledon. His preparation for the junior US Open that year was hampered by a knee injury and he lost in the 3rd round to Viktor Troicki. He was named 2004 ITF Junior Boys’ World Champion. He is one of 7 junior Australian Open champions starting the men’s draw here.

 

  • Monfils is currently without a coach.

 

  • Wild card POUILLE is bidding to reach the 2nd round here for the first time and equal his best Grand Slam result.

 

  • Pouille’s best Grand Slam performance is reaching the 2nd round as a wild card at 2013 Roland Garros
    (l. Grigor Dimitrov). It was his first Tour-level match-win on his Grand Slam debut.

 

  • Last year here on his Australian Open debut as a wild card, Pouille fell to Dusan Lajovic in the 1st round. He failed to qualify here in 2013.

 

  • Pouille fell in the 1st round on his only other appearance at a Grand Slam as a wild card at 2014 Roland Garros (l. Juan Monaco). He failed to qualify for 2014 Wimbledon and didn’t attempt to qualify for the 2014 US Open.

 

  • Pouille warmed up for the Australian Open by reaching his first Tour-level semifinal at Auckland
    (l. Adrian Mannarino). It was just the 2nd time he has won back-to-back matches at Tour-level after 2014 Paris-1000, where he reached the 3rd round (l. Roger Federer). This is the 10th Tour-level event of his career.

 

  • As well as reaching the 3rd round at Paris-1000, Pouille’s best result in 2014 was a runner-up finish at the Meknes Challenger (MAR) (l. Kimmer Coppejans). He also reached the semifinals at the Arad (ROU), Kosice (SVK) and Szczecin (POL) Challengers.

 

  • This is Pouille’s 3rd meeting with a player ranked in the Top 20. He defeated No. 20 Fabio Fognini but lost to No. 2 Federer at 2014 Paris-1000 in his only previous meetings with Top 20 players.

 

  • Pouille reached a career-high ranking of No. 23 on the junior circuit. He reached the quarterfinals of the boys’ event at the 2011 Australian Open and the 2nd round as a wild card at 2010 junior Roland Garros. He was a member of the French team that finished runner-up to USA at the 2008 World Junior Tennis Finals.

 

  • Pouille is coached by Emmanuel Planque.

 

 

  1. 18 GILLES SIMON (FRA) v ROBIN HAASE (NED)

Head-to-head: Simon leads 2-1

2008     Zagreb              Hard (I)             R16      Haase               62 64

2013     Marseille           Hard (I)             R32      Simon               75 75

2014     Wimbledon      Grass (O)          R64      Simon              76(1) 64 64

 

SIMON                                         v                                         HAASE

 

30                                           Age                                           27

20                             ATP Ranking (19 Jan)                             83

11                                         Titles                                          2

56-34                       Career Grand Slam Record                       12-23

15-8                          Australian Open Record                           3-6

329-233                               Career Record                               131-144

191-128                          Career Record – Hard                           61-75

0-1                                    2015 Record                                    0-1

0-1                               2015 Record – Hard                              0-1

14-9                          Career Five-Set Record                           5-7

1                          Comebacks from 0-2 Down                          3

104-106                        Career Tiebreak Record                         40-76

0-0                             2015 Tiebreak Record                            0-0

 

  • SIMON is looking to reach the 2nd round here for the 5th consecutive year.

 

  • Simon has lost in the 1st round here just once before – in 2007 (l. Amer Delic). The last time he lost in the 1st round at a Grand Slam was as No. 19 seed at 2013 Wimbledon when he was defeated by Feliciano Lopez. He is contesting his 9th Australian Open and his 35th Grand Slam overall.

 

  • Simon’s best Grand Slam result came here in 2009, when he reached the quarterfinals as No. 6 seed losing to eventual champion Rafael Nadal.

 

  • Last year here Simon reached the 3rd round, losing to Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. He had defeated Daniel Brands and Marin Cilic in 5-sets in the opening 2 rounds to extend his 5-set record at Melbourne Park to 6-2. He has a 14-9 win-loss record in 5-set matches overall.

 

  • Elsewhere at the Grand Slams in 2014 Simon reached the round of 16 at the US Open (l. Marin Cilic) and fell in the 3rd round at the Australian Open, Roland Garros (l. Milos Raonic) and Wimbledon (l. Novak Djokovic).

 

  • Simon’s best result in 2014 was reaching the final at Shanghai-1000 (l. Roger Federer). He also reached the semifinals at Nice (l. Federico Delbonis) and Tokyo (l. Raonic).

 

  • Prior to coming here, Simon lost to James Duckworth in the 1st round as No. 6 seed at Brisbane. He also played at the Kooyong Exhibition Event, losing to Fernando Verdasco 62 76 but defeating Filip Krajinovic 64 63.

 

  • Simon is a former Top 10 player having reached a career-high ranking of No. 6 in January 2009. He plays here ranked No. 20. He has won 11 career singles titles, most recently at 2013 Metz (d. Tsonga) and is the 2nd most successful Frenchman in the Open Era in terms of titles won (behind Yannick Noah with 23).

 

  • Simon is coached by Jan de Witt. His fitness trainer is Paul Quetin.

 

  • HAASE is bidding to record his first match-win at the Australian Open since 2011. He has fallen in the first round here for the last 3 years.

 

  • Haase reached the 3rd round at the 2011 Australian Open (l. Andy Roddick) and 2011 Wimbledon (l. Mardy Fish), his best Grand Slam result. This is his 7th Australian Open appearance and his 23rd Grand Slam overall.

 

  • Haase won just 2 Grand Slam matches in 2014 – when reaching the 2nd round at Roland Garros
    (d. Nikolay Davydenko, l. Martin Klizan) and Wimbledon (d. Vasek Pospisil, l. Gilles Simon). He lost in the 1st round at the Australian Open (l. Donald Young) and the US Open (l. Andy Murray).

 

  • Last year, Haase’s best performances were reaching the semifinals at Bucharest (l. Lukas Rosol) and Gstaad (l. Juan Monaco), and the quarterfinals at Buenos Aires. He had more success on the doubles court, winning the title at Gstaad with Andre Begemann. He finished the year ranked No. 83, his lowest year-end ranking since 2009.

 

  • Haase has entered the men’s doubles here with Begemann. They will face No. 4 seeds Ivan Dodig/Marcelo Melo in the 1st round. Haase was runner-up in the men’s doubles event here in 2013 with Igor Sijsling (l. Bob Bryan/Mike Bryan).

 

  • Haase is looking for his first match-win of 2015. Prior to coming here, he lost to Borna Coric in the 1st round at Chennai and retired when trailing Jules Marie 76(5) 5-1 in the 2nd round of qualifying at Auckland (following a 1st round bye).

 

  • Haase has won 3 of his last 4 matches against Top 20 opposition. However, he is on a 9-match losing streak against Top 20 players at the Grand Slams. The only Top 20 player he has defeated at a major is No. 19 Ivan Ljubicic at the 2008 Australian Open. He has a 1-10 win-loss record against Top 20 players at the Grand Slams.

 

  • Haase plays right-handed but is actually left-handed.

 

  • Haase is coached by Mark de Jong.

 

LLEYTON HEWITT (AUS) v (WC) ZHANG ZE (CHN)

Head-to-head: Hewitt leads 2-0

2011     Davis Cup (AO1-2R)      Hard (I)             R4        Hewitt               62 62 46 76(2)

2012     Davis Cup (AO1-1R)      Grass (O)          R1        Hewitt               62 61 76(4)

 

 

HEWITT                                        v                                         ZHANG

 

33                                           Age                                           24

87                             ATP Ranking (19 Jan)                            187

30                                         Titles                                          0

145-60                      Career Grand Slam Record                        0-1

30-18                         Australian Open Record                           0-1

611-253                               Career Record                                 9-25

368-153                          Career Record – Hard                            8-19

0-1                                    2015 Record                                    0-0

0-1                               2015 Record – Hard                              0-0

32-22                          Career Five-Set Record                           1-3

6                          Comebacks from 0-2 Down                          1

167-156                        Career Tiebreak Record                           4-6

0-0                             2015 Tiebreak Record                            0-0

 

  • 2005 Australian Open runner-up HEWITT is making his 19th consecutive Australian Open appearance, setting a new record for the most Australian Open appearances ahead of Fabrice Santoro (18) [see Preview page 3]. He is in 5th place in the list for the most appearances at a single Grand Slam.

 

  • Hewitt is also making his 63rd Grand Slam appearance overall, which puts him in joint-2nd place for the most Grand Slams played in the Open Era alongside Roger Federer [see Preview page 5].

 

  • In his 18 previous appearances at Melbourne Park, Hewitt has fallen in the 1st round 7 times.

 

  • Hewitt warmed up for the Australian Open at Brisbane, losing to Samuel Groth 63 62 in the 1st round. It was his first competitive match since defeating Farrukh Dustov 64 64 62 in Australia’s 5-0 victory over Uzbekistan in the Davis Cup World Group play-offs in Perth last September.

 

  • At last year’s Australian Open, Hewitt lost in the 1st round to Andreas Seppi 76(4) 63 57 57 75. He is on a 3-match losing streak in 5-set matches. Hewitt has a 7-5 win-loss record in 5-set matches at the Australian Open and a 32-22 5-set win-loss record overall. He hasn’t won a 5-set match at Melbourne Park since defeating Marcos Baghdatis in the 3rd round in 2008 in a match that finished at 4:34am.

 

  • Elsewhere in Grand Slam play in 2014, Hewitt reached the 2nd round at Wimbledon (l. Jerzy Janowicz) and fell in the 1st round at Roland Garros (l. Carlos Berlocq) and at the US Open (l. Tomas Berdych).

 

  • Hewitt’s best results in 2014 were winning his first hard court title since 2007 at Brisbane (d. Roger Federer) and his 30th career title at Newport (d. Ivo Karlovic). It was the first time he had won 2 titles in the same year since 2004.

 

  • In February 2014 Hewitt broke back into the Top 40 for the first time since October 2010. He plays here ranked No. 87 – his lowest ranking since March 2013.

 

  • Hewitt is a former Grand Slam champion, having won the 2001 US Open (d. Pete Sampras) and 2002 Wimbledon (d. David Nalbandian). He was one of 7 Grand Slam champions to start in the men’s main draw here.

 

  • Hewitt finished runner-up here in 2005, becoming the first Australian to reach an Australian Open final since Pat Cash in 1988. He lost to Marat Safin 16 63 64 64 and had carried a hip flexor injury throughout the whole tournament. Hewitt was one of 10 Australian players to start in this year’s men’s main draw vying to become the first homegrown champion since Mark Edmondson in 1976.

 

  • Hewitt has entered the men’s doubles event here with Chris Guccione. The pair will play Federico Delbonis/Albert Ramos-Vinolas in the 1st round.

 

  • In Davis Cup play in 2014, Hewitt played in Australia’s first World Group appearance since 2007 as they lost 5-0 to France in Rouen. He won a singles and doubles rubber as Australia defeated Uzbekistan 5-0 in the World Group play-offs.

 

  • Hewitt started working with Tony Roche again in 2011.

 

  • Wild card ZHANG is bidding to become the first Chinese man to reach the 2nd round at a Grand Slam since Mei Fu-Chi at 1959 Wimbledon. He is also looking to become the first Chinese man to win a match at the Australian Championships since Lum Pao-Hua in 1927.

 

  • Zhang received a wild card into the 2015 Australian Open after winning the 2015 Asia-Pacific wild card event in Shenzen.

 

  • Last year here as a qualifier he lost to Fernando Verdasco 57 63 62 63 on his Grand Slam debut. It was his the only time he has successfully qualified for a Grand Slam in 9 attempts.

 

  • Prior to coming here, Zhang fell in the 1st round of the Happy Valley Challenger (AUS) (l. Andrew Whittington) and the 2nd round of qualifying at Sydney (l. Jarkko Nieminen).

 

  • Zhang is bidding to record his 3rd Tour-level win over a Top 100 player. He has a 2-15 win-loss record against Top 100 opposition The highest ranked player he has defeated is No. 14 Richard Gasquet at 2012 Beijing.

 

  • Zhang is bidding for the 10th Tour-level victory of his career today. His best Tour-level result is reaching the quarterfinals as a wild card at 2012 Beijing (l. Florian Mayer).

 

  • Zhang’s best result in 2014 was reaching the semifinals at the Prague Challenger (CZE) (l. Jiri Vesely) and the Nan Chang Challenger (CHN) (l. Go Soeda). He also won 2 Futures titles in China.

 

  • Zhang has played 12 Davis Cup ties for China since 2009, with an 8-18 overall win-loss record. He lost both of his singles rubbers in five sets (including the decisive fifth rubber) during China’s 3-2 defeat to Uzbekistan in the Asia/Oceania Group I 2nd round in Tianjin in April 2014.

 

  • Zhang is coached by Joakim Nystrom, who reached the round of 16 at the Australian Open from 1983-85. He trains in Nanjing.

 

 

 * Statistics provided by the International Tennis Federation

 

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Notes and Quotes from Day 1 of the 2015 Australian Open

(January 19, 2015) A few of the more off-beat questions and answers from Day 1 news conferences at the Australian Open.

We’ve seen Milos Raonic debuted a new haircut. Nick Kyrgios has quite the interesting haircut himself. Have you ever thought of doing something like that with your own hair?

GRIGOR DIMITROV: I think I’ve past that phase. I’ve had a lot of haircuts, but I think it’s — visually it looks pretty good. Let’s see how the guys or the people would rate that. I like it. (Smiling.)

 

Gajdasova broke an 0-9 streak at her home major to get her first win.

Did you ever think this day would come?
JARMILA GAJDOSOVA: If I didn’t, I wouldn’t be playing, would I? Yeah, I thought it would, I thought I been playing well, so one of these years it had to come. As I said on the court, I guess I was fortunate for the first time I actually had a draw that I didn’t have a seed in the first round. As much as it was difficult match and every match is hard to win, doesn’t matter if there is a seed or not, at least I had a big opportunity to get through. As I say, it was my ten-year anniversary, so there was going to be celebration or one for the sadness. I’m glad it’s a celebration.
Hradecka knocked off fifth seed Ana Ivanovic

Looks like you can’t wipe the smile off your face. Happy knocking off the fifth seed?

LUCIE HRADECKA: Yeah, definitely. I’m happy. I still don’t believe that I am true. So probably in a couple hours I will know that I am in second round in Australian and I beat Ana. Yeah, whole times, it’s two hours after match, and I’m still smiling.

What did you think after losing that first set where you hadn’t won any of your service games, serving at 40%, then you came out a completely different player?

LUCIE HRADECKA: In the first set I was so nervy. Of course, I have the feeling on the court that the court is so big. I couldn’t hit any balls in the court. When I went outside, I started the serve in second set, I think, Okay, it cannot be the worst. Let’s play every point and let’s see what will happen.

Your shorts seem a lot shorter this year than before. Is that a decision you’ve made or something that’s come from your sponsor?

RAFAEL NADAL: No. To make the shorts shorter is something that I like. I feel more comfortable this way. We make it shorter already last year, and this year a little bit more. I like. I feel more comfortable here, more fresh. Sometimes is good to have some changes, to try different things. But seriously, I prefer this way.

 

You had a bit of an exchange with some of your fans there.  Talk us through that. 

BERNARD TOMIC:  Yeah, no, they kept saying, Australia’s No. 1.  But they got it wrong, you know.  I’m 2.  So I just told them, You know I’m 2 (smiling).

 

Does that mean you feel like there’s less pressure on you not being the No. 1 given there’s so many other Australians in the draw, as well… 

BERNARD TOMIC:  Yeah, I don’t think about those things.  It’s always different.  Obviously now it’s changed a bit.  Like I said, I probably don’t think about those things.  They don’t come across my head.  Today I played good.  I’m happy.  The Fanatics give good support.  I’m happy they came out there.  They’re really nice guys, those people.  They support me really well.  That’s the main thing.

Did you notice a difference in the crowd at Hisense, a general-admission crowd?

BERNARD TOMIC:  Yeah, there is more energy.  It’s more louder.  Does it fit more or not?

Couldn’t tell you. 

BERNARD TOMIC:  I thought Hisense fits more than Rod Laver.  No?  Maybe upgraded seats or something.  Someone told me that a few years ago.  I don’t know.  But it’s a different court.  It’s a different surrounding, so it’s not easy.  Maybe I felt like I should have practiced on that before.  But, yeah, you know, it’s not a bad court.  I really enjoyed playing on it.  The crowd was huge today.  It was positive support.

 

You may remember that article from David Foster Wallace years ago in the New York Times where described you as a religious experience, and then I read, a human beings reconciliation with the fact of having a body. What do you think? Do you recognize yourself? An exaggeration?

ROGER FEDERER: Just a slight exaggeration (laughter). But I guess in sports we have a tendency to — there’s no end. You know, it’s just so unbelievable sometimes, like it’s never been seen before. So I’ve been through this entire phase where I got so many compliments, you just thought, Wow, this is the best feeling in the world. But very quickly you get the feeling as well that not everything’s so great sometimes when you don’t play very well. I’ve been on both sides. That’s why I have no problem accepting criticism, because I’ve gotten so many compliments over the years. It’s part of the game. But clearly some unbelievable pieces have been written about me, about tennis, about other players. It’s interesting to read them. Sometimes just slightly exaggerated, but everybody can judge that the way they want.

 

A lot has been made about Milos Raonic’s haircut. Have you seen it? Thoughts from you?

EUGENIE BOUCHARD: I have not seen it. I made fun of his hair last year. I don’t know how it’s different now. I just think he spends way too much time worrying about his hair.

 

More than you?

EUGENIE BOUCHARD: Yes. Clearly (laughter).

 

Q. What do you make of Li Na’s announcement tonight that she’s expecting? What sort of mom do you think she might be?MARIA SHARAPOVA: I think she’d be a great mom. Yeah, I think it’s a really exciting new chapter in her life. Yeah, it’s something that I believe she’s wanted for a really long time. It’s really nice to be able to settle down and focus on her family and her husband and her future child.Q. Is that something you eventually would like?

MARIA SHARAPOVA: Yeah, definitely. I grew up being very close to — my mom had me when she was very young, but I grew up having her as my best friend. It’s a special — I wish that hopefully one day I’ll be able to have that type of relationship with my mom and with my parents, because I know when you’re younger you’re a bit more rebellious. But I’ve always enjoyed spending time with my parents, even though my dad was a coach of mine for many years. Still is when I’m home. I love having them around. I’m an only child, so they get to spoil me a little bit. But, yeah, it’s a special feeling.

 

Kokkinakis saved four match points in defeating No. 11 seed ERnests Gulbis in five sets.

Q. You had some flashy clothes to match the flashy plays today. Were you inspired at all by Andre Agassi with that outfit?

THANASI KOKKINAKIS: I don’t know. You’ll have to ask Nike. They gave me that package. They were like, We only give this to a few. If you’re up for it, wear it. I was like, Yeah, whatever, I’ll do it. I wore the stripes last year, but that was nothing compared to what I wore this year. So I was out there, and I was like surely in this outfit I’ve got to get the win.

 

Q. Were the shorts comfortable or not?

THANASI KOKKINAKIS: It was a bit annoying. I saw it dangling at the bottom there, so I tried to flick it over. No, that felt fine. I prefer shorter shorts. It makes me run easier.

 

Q. It will probably be on the front pages of the newspapers. Or you don’t care about it?

THANASI KOKKINAKIS: It was exciting. I know it was a good win. There’s more to come. I don’t want to win just one round. Obviously it was my best win yet. I’ll enjoy it for the rest of the night, but tomorrow I’ll need to get prepared for the next match two days away against Sam.

 

Q. Are you going to have a quiet word to Nick about trying to upstage your match?

THANASI KOKKINAKIS: I saw him in the changing rooms. We congratulated each other. It’s a good win for both of us. Hopefully we can go further in the draw.

 

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Sharapova and Bouchard Move into Australian Open Second Round

(January 19, 2015) Second seed Maria Sharapova followed up her recent title in Brisbane with a 6-4, 6-1 win over Petra Martic in the last match of the night session in Rod Laver Arena.

“I had a great start in Brisbane winning the title for the first time in my career – that was great to have those matches coming into such a big match in Melbourne,” she said.

“I played a few night matches in Brisbane with the roof. It was a little cooler out there. Overall the courts have been playing a little faster. Tonight was a little heavier. But I played an opponent that’s capable of playing very good tennis. She’s been injured a little bit I believe in the last year or so, but she can play. She’s got some, you know, big weapons. For a first round against someone that’s already played a few matches, I knew I had to be really strong from the beginning.”

 

Seventh seed Eugenie Bouchard began her campaign for her first major beating Anna-Lena Friedsam of Germany 6-2, 6-4 on Monday in the first round of the Australian Open.

“I think the first round is always tough, especially at the beginning of the season,” said Bouchard. “So I’m happy I was able to stay pretty solid. I think she played pretty well. That’s something I guess I have to expect. Now often players will kind of go for it and play a really good level against me. Yeah, I’m happy I stayed calm out there and pretty solid.”

“I was just kind of focused on every point,” Bouchard continued. “It was definitely kind of a tougher back-and-forth battle in the second. But I just stayed calm and I knew once I got a chance I would try to take it, and that’s what I did at the end of the second. I had to kind of weather the storm a little bit when she’d serve well or go for her shots. A couple times she could string together a couple good points.”

Monday saw eight seeded women’s players fall including No. 5 Ana Ivanovic.

AUSTRALIAN – MELBOURNE, AUS
$15,561,973.00
19-31 JANUARY, 2015

Results – Monday, January 19, 2015
Singles – First Round
(2) Maria Sharapova (RUS) d. (Q) Petra Martic (CRO) 64 61
(3) Simona Halep (ROU) d. Karin Knapp (ITA) 63 62
(Q) Lucie Hradecka  (CZE) d. (5) Ana Ivanovic (SRB) 16 63 62
(7) Eugenie Bouchard (CAN) d. Anna-Lena Friedsam (GER) 62 64
Irina-Camelia Begu (ROU) d. (9) Angelique Kerber (GER) 64 06 61
(10) Ekaterina Makarova (RUS) d. An-Sophie Mestach (BEL) 62 62
(14) Sara Errani (ITA) d. Grace Min (USA) 61 60
Yaroslava Shvedova (KAZ) d. (16) Lucie Safarova (CZE) 64 26 86
Carina Witthoeft (GER) d. (17) Carla Suárez Navarro (ESP)63 61
(21) Peng Shuai (CHN) d. (Q) Tatjana Maria (GER) 64 75
(22) Karolina Pliskova (CZE) d. (Q) Evgeniya Rodina (RUS) 75 61
Yanina Wickmayer (BEL) d. (23) Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) 46 63 63
Caroline Garcia (FRA) d. (27) Svetlana Kuznetsova (RUS) 64 62
Kristina Mladenovic (FRA) d. (28) Sabine Lisicki (GER) 46 64 62
(31) Zarina Diyas (KAZ) d. (Q) Urszula Radwanska (POL) 36 64 62
Julia Goerges (GER) d. (32) Belinda Bencic (SUI) 62 61
Roberta Vinci (ITA) d. Bojana Jovanovski (SRB) 75 61
Klara Koukalova (CZE) d. (WC) Storm Sanders (AUS) 75 64
Magdalena Rybarikova (SVK) d. Ana Konjuh (CRO) 64 64
Christina McHale (USA) d. (Q) Stéphanie Foretz (FRA) 64 16 1210
Monica Puig (PUR) d. (WC) Arina Rodionova (AUS) 60 63
Jarmila Gajdosova (AUS) d. Alexandra Dulgheru (ROU) 63 64
Sílvia Soler-Espinosa (ESP) d. Annika Beck (GER) 75 64
Kiki Bertens (NED) d. (WC) Daria Gavrilova (AUS) 76(8) 57 62
Anna Schmiedlova  (SVK) d. Chanelle Scheepers (RSA) 64 46 62
Katerina Siniakova (CZE) d. Elena Vesnina (RUS) 62 75
Polona Hercog (SLO) d. Wang Qiang (CHN) 36 63 62
Lara Arruabarrena (ESP) d. (Q) Renata Voracova (CZE) 61 62
Stefanie Voegele  (SUI d. Pauline Parmentier (FRA) 61 36 62
Bethanie Mattek-Sands  (USA) d. (WC) Duan Ying-Ying (CHN) 64 36 63
(Q) Alexandra Panova (RUS) d. Sorana Cirstea (ROU) 75 60
(WC) Oceane Dodin (FRA) d. Alison Riske (USA) 76(5) 36 63

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Federer Stops Lu to Advance in Melbourne

 

(January 19, 2015) In the first Night Session match in Rod Laver Arena, four–time Australian Open champion Roger Federer defeated Lu Yen-hsun of Taiwan 6-4, 6-2, 7-5 on Monday to reach the second round at the Australian Open.

Last winning in Melbourne in 2010, the 17-time major champion donning a neon yellow shirt captured a record 74th match in 85 starts at Melbourne Park.

Federer is looking to be the second man to claim five Australian Open titles. Roy Emerson has six.

“I thought I was playing very well through the first couple of sets,” said the Swiss. “I think I was serving very well. I was holding my service games very comfortably. Until probably 5-2 in the second set was the first time he had any play on my service game. I was very happy. I was returning and able to dominate the plays from the back. I think he started to serve better in the third. I think conditions slowed down a bit. Because of the coolness and the night coming in, I felt it was hard to generate stuff. It became a very interesting third set. Gave me, I think, a lot of information. Instead of sort of just steamrolling through him he really made it tough for me. I don’t want to say I got lucky to not be broken early on in the third, but he was playing some really good tennis. I started to mix it up and trying out things because I had to, I felt, towards the end of the third. Started to serve better myself again towards the end of the match. I adjusted to the conditions, because it did play different at 7:00 than it did at 8:30. A drastic change, in my opinion.”

His coach, Tennis Hall of Famer Stefan Edberg who has two Melbourne titles, was in attendance was celebrating his 49th birthday.

For the 33-year-old, it was his 1001st career match win. He claimed 100th, less than two weeks ago when he won the Brisbane International tournament.

Federer has reached the semifinals for the Australian Open for 11 straight years.

Next up for the No. 2 seed is Simone Bollelli who defeated Juan Monaco 6-3, 3-6, 6-3, 6-1.

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