July 31, 2016

Novak Djokovic Wins Madrid for Record 29th Masters Title

 

(May 8, 2016) Novak Djokovic won his second Madrid Open title on Sunday beating Andy Murray 6-2, 3-6, 6-3 for a record 29th Masters title and 64th career ATP World Tour title. The world No. 1 is now tied with Pete Sampras and Bjorn Borg for sixth place for titles won in the Open Era.

This win raises the Serb’s record against the Brit to 23-9, victorious in 12 of the last 13 matches.

“This came at the right time,” Djokovic said. “I had an amazing opening four months of the season. Then an early exit in Monte-Carlo, but it happened for a reason, because I needed some time to really recharge my batteries. Three weeks was more than enough to get some freshness and new breath and get ready for Madrid. I came here early, got used to the conditions, and played a really fantastic tournament that will definitely serve as a great confidence boost before Rome and the French Open.”

“I started very well,” Djokovic explained. “Played terrific tennis in the first set. Couple of close games in the second, beginning of the second set, and then I made some unforced errors and double faults in the game when I dropped my serve in the second set. I couldn’t get back.

“He started serving very well, especially down the T and deuce side. Very precise and very strong, and he was backing that serve up with aggressive first shots, and then just about an hour it was split sets.

“Then the match really could have gone either way, but we exchanged some breaks of serves early in the third. Then when it seemed like I was closing out the match and having a match point at 5-2, he came up with some big serves again. The last game obviously got myself out of some trouble with some good serves, with some good forehands, but was very, very close. Very close.”

Andy Murray

Andy Murray

“I obviously fought hard today,” Murray said. “Yeah, disappointed because from like two games, like 2-All to 4-2, 5-2, I was making him work hard in the second set and then beginning of the third and then at the end of the third set.

“I just think I’m definitely moving better. That’s for sure. It makes a huge difference. Like I said, on the other surfaces it’s a massive strength of mine, a big part of my game, and for a number years I didn’t move well on the clay. It was a hindrance, and that makes you uncomfortable. If you took Ivo Karlovic’s serve away he would feel uncomfortable going on the court. For me, take my movement away.

“When I was having the problems with my back it was difficult for me when stepping on the court; whereas now my body feels great. I feel like I’m moving a lot better. So I’m not going on the court sort of a little bit nervous or apprehensive. I believe I can play well on clay now.

“There was a period there – if you watch it back – the game I got broken [in the third set], I made three unforced errors in that game. That was disappointing. Then obviously the last game I don’t know how many break point chances I had, but must have been six or seven.

“Both of us were pretty clinical on the break points up until the last game for me. That’s why he’s No. 1 just now. He fought very hard in that game and served well when he was a bit nervous. At the end he came up with some big serves and got himself some free points and did well.”

 

“Then the match really could have gone either way, but we exchanged some breaks of serves early in the third,” noted the world No. 1. “Then when it seemed like I was closing out the match and having a match point at 5-2, he came up with some big serves again. The last game obviously got myself out of some trouble with some good serves, with some good forehands, but was very, very close. Very close.”

“I’m very pleased that I have developed a great rivalry with somebody that I’ve known since very long time and somebody that I have a very good and friendly relationship with on and off the court,” Djokovic said.

 

Since Murray did not defend his Madrid title from last year, he will slip to No. 3 in the world on Monday. Roger Federer will move up to No. 2.

In the men’s doubles final Jean-Julien Rojer and Horia Tecau won their first Masters 1000 title as a team, beating defending champions Rohan Bopanna and Florin Mergea 6-4, 7-6(5). It was their 12th trophy overall.

“They are a great team, and also friends,” Rojer said. “It’s never easy to play these matches and it’s difficult for all four guys.”

“I want to thank my partner for having another great week,” said Tecau. “We were struggling for a few weeks, couldn’t win a lot of matches… It feels great to play well together and get another title.

“We’ve been chasing this one for almost three years. We’re really excited to get this one because it comes after having a few early exits in Masters 1000 events this year. So it means a lot to us.”

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Halep wins Madrid Open; Murray Beats Nadal and Will Meet Djokovic in the Final

Simona Halep

Simona Halep

(May 7, 2016) Calling her win “the best day in my life,” Romania’s Simona Halep won her second career WTA Premier Mandatory event when she beat Slovakia’s Dominika Cibulkova 6-2, 6-4 to claim the Madrid Open title.

“I saw always that it’s a special tournament because of Mr. (Ion) Tiriac, because of many Romanians that are coming here. I feel like home,” Halep said. Tiriac, also a Romanian, is a member of the tennis Hall of Fame is the Tournament Director of Madrid and gave Halep a wildcard into the tournament three years ago.

The victory for Halep marks her 12th career WTA tournament title. She will now move up to No. 5 in the rankings. Cibulkova will rise to No. 26.

Kei Nishikori and Novak Djokovic at GR8 Fundraiser in Miami in 2011

Kei Nishikori and Novak Djokovic at GR8 Fundraiser in Miami in 2011

Novak Djokovic will meet defending champion Andy Murray in the Madrid Open final on Sunday. No. 2 Murray saved 11 break points in holding off four-time Madrid winner No. 5 Rafael Nadal 7-5, 6-4, snapping the Spaniard’s 13-match winning streak. Murray beat Nadal in last year’s Madrid final.

“Not loads of players have won against Rafa on clay throughout his career,” Murray said. “To beat him in Spain on a clay court is obviously a big, big challenge for any player. Very pleased to have beaten him this year.”

“Murray was not unbeatable today,” Nadal said in press. “It was an open match, an even match,”

“I didn’t play my best level, but I didn’t play badly. I played a medium level, which was not enough to beat Murray.”

Djokovic beat Kei Nishikori 6-3, 7-6(4) in the other men’s semifinal. The Serbian had some trouble serving out the match leading 6-4, 5-4 40-0. The man from Japan came back and held off four match points against him to even the set at 5-5. Both men held and went to a tiebreak, which Djokovic won 7-3.

“It wasn’t easy to play in these very windy conditions, but overall I’m very pleased,” Djokovic said.”

Going into the final Djokovic leads Murray 22-9, winning 11 of the last 12 matches, winning all four matches on clay. Murray needs to win on Sunday to keep his No. 2 ranking ahead of the French Open or Roger Federer will move up to the second spot.

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Murray and Nadal Advance in Madrid

Andy Murray fh

(May 3, 2016) Defending Madrid Open champion Andy Murray and four-time titlist Rafael Nadal moved into the third round on Tuesday. Fifth seed Nadal easily beat Andrey Kuznetsov 6-3, 6-3, while Murray passed a 7-6, 3-6, 6-1 test over veteran qualifier 37-year-old Radek Stepanek.

“I’m happy with the way I started the clay-court season,” Monte- Carlo and Barcelona winner Nadal said. “Today, another victory, so that’s great news. I’m excited about this tournament.”

“I served well both in Monte Carlo and in Barcelona. And it’s going to be vital to serve well here as well to have a good tournament.”

“He played very well, it was not easy,” Murray said of his two-hour and 16-minute match against the former world No. 8. “He was hitting the ball big up the lines. There was nothing I could do.”

2009 U.S. Open champion Juan Martin del Potro, currently ranked 274th after returning from injuries and surgery, beat 14th seed Dominic Thiem 7-6 (5), 6-3.

“I have just played my best match since I came back to tennis after my surgeries,” Del Potro said. “I’ve had a great test against a very high-level player.”

 

RESULTS – TUESDAY, 3 MAY 2016

Men’s Singles – Second Round
[2] A. Murray (GBR) d [Q] R. Stepanek (CZE) 76(3) 36 61
[5] R. Nadal (ESP) d A. Kuznetsov (RUS) 63 63
[10] R. Gasquet (FRA) d [WC] F. Verdasco (ESP) 64 36 61
[11] M. Raonic (CAN) d A. Dolgopolov (UKR) 64 67(3) 62
First Round
[13] G. Monfils (FRA) d K. Anderson (RSA) 64 61
[PR] J. del Potro (ARG) d [14] D. Thiem (AUT) 76(5) 63
[15] R. Bautista Agut (ESP) d [Q] S. Giraldo (COL) 63 75
B. Coric (CRO) d [WC] N. Almagro (ESP) 62 62
A. Ramos-Vinolas (ESP) d J. Chardy (FRA) 63 64
N. Kyrgios (AUS) d G. Pella (ARG) 76(7) 64
P. Cuevas (URU) d P. Kohlschreiber (GER) 63 36 76(5)
F. Fognini (ITA) d B. Tomic (AUS) 62 64
J. Sock (USA) d B. Paire (FRA) 26 62 76(5)
[Q] D. Kudla (USA) d I. Karlovic (CRO) 67(7) 76(5) 76(4)
[WC] P. Carreno Busta (ESP) d G. Dimitrov (BUL) 76(3) 63

Doubles – First Round
T. Bellucci (BRA) / L. Mayer (ARG) d J. Cabal (COL) / R. Farah (COL) 67(3) 76(3) 10-7
[WC] M. Bhupathi (IND) / F. Martin (FRA) d G. Pella (ARG) / G. Simon (FRA) 67(3) 75 10-7
R. Klaasen (RSA) / R. Ram (USA) d F. Lopez (ESP) / M. Lopez (ESP) 64 67(6) 10-5
P. Cuevas (URU) / M. Granollers (ESP) d S. Johnson (USA) / S. Querrey (USA) 64 62

SCHEDULE – WEDNESDAY, 4 MAY 2016

MANOLO SANTANA start 12:00 noon
ATP – F. Lopez (ESP) vs [15] R. Bautista Agut (ESP)
Not Before 2:00 pm
WTA – [6] S. Halep (ROU) vs [10] T. Bacsinszky (SUI)
Not Before 4:00 pm
ATP – [1] N. Djokovic (SRB) vs B. Coric (CRO)
Not Before 8:00 pm
WTA – [8] C. Suárez Navarro (ESP) vs S. Stosur (AUS)
Not Before 9:30 pm
ATP – A. Ramos-Vinolas (ESP) vs [7] J. Tsonga (FRA)

ARANTXA SANCHEZ start 12:00 noon
WTA – D. Gavrilova (AUS) vs [5] P. Kvitova (CZE)
Not Before 2:00 pm
ATP – F. Fognini (ITA) vs [6] K. Nishikori (JPN)
ATP – [Q] D. Kudla (USA) vs [9] D. Ferrer (ESP)
ATP – P. Cuevas (URU) vs [13] G. Monfils (FRA)
Not Before 8:00 pm
ATP – [PR] J. del Potro (ARG) vs J. Sock (USA)
Not Before 9:30 pm
WTA – [Q] P. Tig (ROU) vs M. Keys (USA)

ESTADIO 3 start 12:00 noon
ATP – [8] T. Berdych (CZE) vs [Q] D. Istomin (UZB)
ATP – [4] S. Wawrinka (SUI) vs N. Kyrgios (AUS)
WTA – [4] V. Azarenka (BLR) vs [Q] L. Chirico (USA)
WTA – D. Cibulkova (SVK) vs A. Pavlyuchenkova (RUS)

PISTA 4 start 12:00 noon
WTA – C. Mchale (USA) vs I. Begu (ROU)
ATP – S. Querrey (USA) vs [Q] L. Pouille (FRA)
ATP – J. Sousa (POR) vs [LL] M. Granollers (ESP)
WTA – [Q] L. Siegemund (GER) vs [WC] S. Cirstea (ROU)
Not Before 5:00 pm
WTA – TBA after rest – [5] C. Garcia (FRA) / K. Mladenovic (FRA) vs Y. Xu (CHN) / S. Zheng (CHN)

PISTA 5 start 12:00 noon
WTA – [4] H. Chan (TPE) / Y. Chan (TPE) vs M. Gasparyan (RUS) / K. Siniakova (CZE)
Not Before 2:00 pm
ATP – [16] G. Simon (FRA) vs [WC] P. Carreno Busta (ESP)
ATP – T. Huey (PHI) / M. Mirnyi (BLR) vs D. Nestor (CAN) / R. Stepanek (CZE)
ATP – R. Klaasen (RSA) / R. Ram (USA) vs [4] I. Dodig (CRO) / M. Melo (BRA)
ATP – TBA after rest – F. Fognini (ITA) / V. Troicki (SRB) vs L. Kubot (POL) / M. Matkowski (POL)

PISTA 6 start 12:00 noon
WTA – L. Arruabarrena (ESP) / S. Errani (ITA) vs [3] T. Babos (HUN) / Y. Shvedova (KAZ)
WTA – [8] E. Makarova (RUS) / E. Vesnina (RUS) vs A. Klepac (SLO) / K. Srebotnik (SLO)
ATP – H. Kontinen (FIN) / J. Peers (AUS) vs A. Dolgopolov (UKR) / B. Tomic (AUS)

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Madrid: Federer Withdraws with Back Injury, Upsets Continue

227 Federer in press 1-001

(May 2, 2016) Roger Federer withdrew from the Madrid Masters on Monday with a back injury. The No. 3 player in the world said that he hurt himself in practice over the weekend.

“I arrived and I was OK, and then I practiced on Saturday and hurt my back a little bit in practice and then stopped early,” Federer said. “I just didn’t feel like I could practice.”

The 34-year-old Swiss was off the tour for almost two months after the Australian Open after knee surgery and he withdrew from the Miami Open due to a stomach virus.

“I rather play it safe and rest up now,” said the three-time Madrid winner to media. “I’m very disappointed to say the least.”

Federer is hoping to play the Rome Masters before playing the second major of the year, Roland Garros, which begins on May 22.

“It’s been a tough year,” Federer said. “I hope it gets better from here.”

Also missing from Madrid is Serena Williams, who withdrew from the tournament last week due to illness.

The upsets continued on the women’s side of the draw. Sunday saw the top two women’s seeds – Agnieszka Radwanska and Angelique Kerber lose. Monday, Madrid favorite, the No. 3 seed from Spain Garbine Muguruza was knocked out of the tournament along with 14th seed Ana Ivanovic, 12th seed Elina Svitolina, 13th seed Karolina Pliskova and 16th seed Sloane Stephens.

On the men’s side, French qualifier Lucas Pouille saved four match points to upset 12th seed David Goffin 7-6 (4), 2-6, 7-6 (7).

MUTUA MADRID OPEN – MADRID, ESP

 

RESULTS – MAY 02, 2016
Women’s Singles – Second Round
I. Begu (ROU) d [3] G. Muguruza (ESP) 57 76(4) 63
[4] V. Azarenka (BLR) d A. Cornet (FRA) 63 62
[5] P. Kvitova (CZE) d [Q] E. Vesnina (RUS) 63 63
D. Gavrilova (AUS) d [12] E. Svitolina (UKR) 62 76(4)
C. Mchale (USA) d [13] Ka. Pliskova (CZE) 76(3) 64
[Q] L. Chirico (USA) d [14] A. Ivanovic (SRB) 57 61 63
[Q] P. Tig (ROU) d [16] S. Stephens (USA) 62 63
M. Keys (USA) d B. Strycova (CZE) 63 63

Women’s Doubles – First Round
[6] A. Hlavackova (CZE) / L. Hradecka (CZE) d K. Bondarenko (UKR) / O. Savchuk (UKR) 64 76(1)
A. Medina Garrigues (ESP) / A. Parra Santonja (ESP) d [WC] P. Badosa Gibert (ESP) / M. Martínez Sánchez (ESP) 46 63 10-7
M. Gasparyan (RUS) / K. Siniakova (CZE) d [WC] K. Peschke (CZE) / B. Strycova (CZE) 57 62 10-6
V. King (USA) / A. Kudryavtseva (RUS) d J. Goerges (GER) / K. Pliskova (CZE) 64 62
L. Arruabarrena (ESP) / S. Errani (ITA) d S. Hsieh (TPE) / O. Kalashnikova (GEO) 64 63
A. Klepac (SLO) / K. Srebotnik (SLO) d [WC] S. Soler-Espinosa (ESP) / S. Sorribes Tormo (ESP) 60 75
[WC] S. Kuznetsova (RUS) / A. Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) d M. Irigoyen (ARG) / C. Liang (CHN) 62 64

Men’s Singles – First Round
[9] D. Ferrer (ESP) d G. Garcia-Lopez (ESP) 36 61 62
[10] R. Gasquet (FRA) d [Q] R. Carballes Baena (ESP) 61 76(5)
[11] M. Raonic (CAN) d T. Bellucci (BRA) 76(4) 61
[Q] L. Pouille (FRA) d [12] D. Goffin (BEL) 76(4) 26 76(7) – saved 4 M.P.
[16] G. Simon (FRA) d M. Baghdatis (CYP) 63 36 64
F. Lopez (ESP) d L. Mayer (ARG) 76(5) 46 64
A. Kuznetsov (RUS) d V. Troicki (SRB) 64 64
S. Querrey (USA) d [Q] P. Herbert (FRA) 67(5) 76(5) 64
J. Sousa (POR) d N. Mahut (FRA) 64 64
[Q] D. Istomin (UZB) d T. Gabashvili (RUS) 61 64
[Q] R. Stepanek (CZE) d V. Pospisil (CAN) 61 67(4) 64

Men’s Doubles – First Round
[WC] P. Carreno Busta (ESP) / F. Verdasco (ESP) d K. Anderson (RSA) / J. Chardy (FRA) 64 64

ORDER OF PLAY – TUESDAY, MAY 03, 2016
MANOLO SANTANA start 12:00 noon
WTA – [6] S. Halep (ROU) vs K. Knapp (ITA)
WTA – [8] C. Suárez Navarro (ESP) vs S. Lisicki (GER)

Not Before 4:00 pm
ATP – [5] R. Nadal (ESP) vs A. Kuznetsov (RUS)

Not Before 8:00 pm
ATP – [Q] R. Stepanek (CZE) vs [2] A. Murray (GBR)

Not Before 9:30 pm
WTA – [WC] S. Cirstea (ROU) vs D. Kovinic (MNE)

ARANTXA SANCHEZ start 12:00 noon
ATP – [Q] S. Giraldo (COL) vs [15] R. Bautista Agut (ESP)
ATP – [14] D. Thiem (AUT) vs [PR] J. del Potro (ARG)

Not Before 4:00 pm
WTA – D. Cibulkova (SVK) vs C. Garcia (FRA)
ATP – [11] M. Raonic (CAN) vs A. Dolgopolov (UKR)
ATP – [10] R. Gasquet (FRA) vs [WC] F. Verdasco (ESP)

ESTADIO 3 start 12:00 noon
ATP – K. Anderson (RSA) vs [13] G. Monfils (FRA)
WTA – S. Stosur (AUS) vs [11] L. Safarova (CZE)
ATP – [WC] P. Carreno Busta (ESP) vs G. Dimitrov (BUL)
ATP – [WC] N. Almagro (ESP) vs B. Coric (CRO)

Not Before 8:00 pm
WTA – [Q] L. Siegemund (GER) vs [Q] M. Lucic-Baroni (CRO)

PISTA 4 start 12:00 noon
WTA – E. Makarova (RUS) vs [10] T. Bacsinszky (SUI)
ATP – F. Fognini (ITA) vs B. Tomic (AUS)
ATP – A. Ramos-Vinolas (ESP) vs J. Chardy (FRA)
ATP – P. Cuevas (URU) / M. Granollers (ESP) vs S. Johnson (USA) / S. Querrey (USA)
ATP – TBA – T. Huey (PHI) / M. Mirnyi (BLR) vs D. Nestor (CAN) / R. Stepanek (CZE)

PISTA 5 start 12:00 noon
ATP – G. Pella (ARG) vs N. Kyrgios (AUS)
ATP – P. Cuevas (URU) vs P. Kohlschreiber (GER)
WTA – A. Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) vs C. Giorgi (ITA)

Not Before 4:00 pm
WTA – after suitable rest – V. King (USA) / A. Kudryavtseva (RUS) vs [7] G. Muguruza (ESP) / C. Suárez Navarro (ESP)

PISTA 6 start 12:00 noon
ATP – J. Sock (USA) vs B. Paire (FRA)
ATP – [Q] D. Kudla (USA) vs I. Karlovic (CRO)
ATP – R. Klaasen (RSA) / R. Ram (USA) vs F. Lopez (ESP) / M. Lopez (ESP)

Not Before 4:00 pm
ATP – [WC] M. Bhupathi (IND) / F. Martin (FRA) vs G. Pella (ARG) / G. Simon (FRA)
ATP – T. Bellucci (BRA) / L. Mayer (ARG) vs J. Cabal (COL) / R. Farah (COL)

PISTA 7 start 12:00 noon
WTA – [1] M. Hingis (SUI) / S. Mirza (IND) vs C. Chuang (TPE) / D. Jurak (CRO)
WTA – A. Medina Garrigues (ESP) / A. Parra Santonja (ESP) vs [6] A. Hlavackova (CZE) / L. Hradecka (CZE)

Not Before 3:00 pm
WTA – TBA after suitable rest – [8] E. Makarova (RUS) / E. Vesnina (RUS) vs R. Atawo (USA) / A. Spears (USA)

Not Before 4:00 pm
WTA – TBA after suitable rest – [WC] S. Kuznetsova (RUS) / A. Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) vs [2] B. Mattek-Sands (USA) / L. Safarova (CZE)

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Andy Murray Beats Rafael Nadal to Earn Madrid Masters Title

Andy Murray with Madrid trophy

(May 10, 2015) Andy Murray defeated Rafael Nadal on clay for the first time in his career on Sunday, 6-3, 6-2 to win his second Madrid Open. Just six days ago Murray claimed his first career clay tournament in Munich.

For Murray it was his 10th Masters Series title, first on clay and 33rd overall career tennis title.

Murray is undefeated since getting married on April 11 to his long-time girlfriend Kim Sears.

After his victory, Murray signed the TV camera glass with the words “Marriage Works.”

“Obviously the tennis has gone well (since the marriage),” Murray said. “You’re happy and that helps your performances on the court.”

“Today I was just more consistent, Murray said of the match. “In the second set Rafa was starting to play better at the beginning and the middle part. But I stayed strong in that period of the match and he started to make some mistakes at the end that he wouldn’t normally make. That obviously helped me finish the match.

“I wasn’t expecting this a couple of weeks ago, so when things are unexpected, it feels nicer. I didn’t feel like I put too much pressure on myself the last couple of weeks, which is a good thing. But obviously to win a Masters 1000 on clay is a step in the right direction. It’s something I had never done before. So that’s good progress there.”

“For me it was obviously a very tough match, you know winning against Rafa on clay is extremely difficult, one of the hardest things in tennis,” Murray added. “From my side it was a very good performance. I’m sure Rafa feels he could have played much better. But from my side, I couldn’t have done much more.”

“This wasn’t the game I wanted to play, but I tried to the very end,” Nadal explained. “Still, it was a very important and positive week for me, I recovered sensations that I hadn’t felt in a long time.”

“I’ve pushed Rafa on the clay a few times,” Murray said. “This (win) obviously gives me confidence.”

“I’ve played a couple good matches [this week], especially yesterday’s match,” Nadal said. “It’s one of the best matches I have played in a long time. So I cannot leave Madrid not happy. I have to leave happy and just delete what happened today. I will just stay with the good things that happened this week, and there are a lot of them, more good than bad. I will try to recover the good feelings in Rome. I think I’ve made a step forward and I’m playing better. My game is better.”

With the loss, Nadal’s ranking will fall to No 7 as of Monday. Murray’s ranking remains at No. 3. Both men will play the Rome Masters this week.

Petra Kvitova won the women’s title on Saturday beating Svetlana Kuznetsova 6-1, 6-2. The world No. 4 ended the 27-match unbeaten of Serena Williams on Friday.

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Rafael Nadal Wins Madrid Open After Kei Nishikori Retires

 

(May 11, 2014) Rafael Nadal is back on track for the clay season. World No. 1 Nadal won his fourth Madrid Open on after Kei Nishikori was forced to pull out of the match with a back injury with Nadal leading 2-6, 6-4, 3-0 in the final on Sunday.

“I’m very sorry for Nishikori,” Nadal said. The No. 1 Japanese player was leading the Spaniard 6-2, 4-2 when he first felt pain.

“He’s an unbelievable player that will fight to be in London (ATP World Tour Finals),” Nadal added. “I am sure of that. I really hope that the injury is not too bad and he will be able to compete in Roland Garros.”

“I suffered a similar situation in Australia this year,” said Nadal who lost this year’s Australian Open final to Stanislas Wawrinka. “So I know what I’m talking about and how bitter it is, especially when you’re playing an important match.”

Nishikori, 24, who was participating in his first Masters Series final, said that despite the injury he has a positive look at the future.

“There is a lot of confidence I get from this tournament by beating (Ferrer) in three sets and playing well in the final today. It’s going to be very exciting at (Roland Garros) because I never feel like this on clay. I’m very confident of whatever I hit going for winners. I can hit from either side – forehand or backhand – so it’s a very good feeling that I have on clay right now.”

The loss ended Nishikori’s consecutive win streak at 14. He has already withdrawn

The victory gives Nadal his 27th ATP World Tour Masters 1000 title and his 63 ATP career title. Nadal now is alone in sixth place in tournament wins in the Open Era.

“Winning at home is always more special than winning anywhere,” said the 27-year-old. “Having the chance to play in front of your home crowd… is unforgettable for me. This city gives me a lot. This is a very important victory for me.”

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Maria Sharapova Rallies to Win Her First Madrid Open Title

 

(May 11, 2014) Last year’s Madrid Open bridesmaid is this year’s bride as last year’s losing finalist Maria Sharapova rebounded from being dominated in the first set 6-1 to claim her first Madrid Open title over Simona Halep, 1-6, 6-2, 6-3.

 

“What a week,” Sharapova said emphatically. “Last year I lost in the finals and I really wanted to go one extra step this year, and it’s just been such a fantastic week. Simona and I had played a couple of times before, but she’s really on a different level now. I don’t know how I pulled it off. In the first set I wasn’t doing much to hurt her, and that’s the tennis she’s capable of playing – I knew I had to do some different things after the first set to win this match.”
“I don’t have regrets because it was an amazing week for me and it was my biggest final,” said the Romanian Halep. “But I’m really happy that I could play the final here in Madrid. I played really well all week and I beat top players and I played a very high level of tennis. Maria is a great player and a great champion. She played really well, and I think she deserved to win this title. ”

 

“I don’t take any finals for granted, and every tournament means a lot to me,” Sharapova continued. “I came close last year, and I didn’t have a great first set today, but I knew it wasn’t over until the last point was played.”

 

For No. 9 Sharapova the victory marks her 31st WTA title of her career. It extends her current won streak on a lay court to 11. She also captured a tournament in Stuttgart this year.

 

She has now won 46 of her last 49 matches on clay, with all three of the losses coming to No. 1 Serena Williams.

 

The 27-year-old Russian will see her ranking rise to No. 7 and Halep will remain at No. 5. Next stop for both women on the tour will be Rome which began on Sunday.

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