2014/10/25

Marion Bartoli – “No Regrets”

 

(June 22, 2014) WIMBLEDON – Last year’s Wimbledon Ladies’ champion Marion Bartoli says she has no regrets about retiring shortly after winning the tournament.  At 28-years-old, she retired six weeks after Wimbledon after losing in Cincinnati.

“Literally I can’t even lift my arm every morning,” the Frenchwoman said.  “It was the same last year, and didn’t improve from a year after, even without playing much tennis.

“So definitely no regrets at all.  I totally moved on into something different.  I just launched my shoe line three weeks ago during the French Open.  Designing jewelry, too.

“So many things going on in my life right now, but just extremely honored to be still the 2013 Wimbledon champion and reigning champion just for the last two weeks.”

Bartoli participated in the defending champion’s news conference on Sunday despite being retired. This was the first time since 1997 that the Wimbledon’s defending champion, declined to defend her title.

So what does Bartoli miss about not playing on the tennis tour?

“What I miss the most is probably the last five seconds of my (Wimbledon) final, which is when I’m about to serve and I serve and I ace,” said the Frenchwoman.  “Kind of showing it’s an ace and knowing it’s an ace and knowing I won Wimbledon, that’s probably what I’m missing.”

“Other than this, I don’t miss every morning having to wake up and not being able to lift my arm; having my whole body terribly sore; having to travel; pack and unpack; all the practice time you have to book; make sure you’re just having your schedule ready.  Everything has to be ready every single day.

“I really enjoy every single second of my tennis career.  It was not heavy for me.  I was so driven.  I was ready to do everything I need to do in order to fulfill my dream.  I was extremely fortunate to do so last year, especially in this magical place as it is in Wimbledon.

“So, you know, I knew when I finished, I was kind of escaping or putting on the side.  I didn’t know what was in front of me.  Now I know what is in front of me, which is great.”

 

Karen Pestaina at The Championships, Wimbledon

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WTA Mobilizes Tennis Community to Support “Rally For Bally”

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WTA – ST PETERSBURG, FL, USA — The Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) is encouraging tennis fans worldwide to pledge their support for the fundraising efforts for “Rally For Bally,” a series of exhibition tennis matches staged on Sunday, June 15, in memory of former British No.1 tennis player Elena Baltacha, who was affectionately known as “Bally” by her friends and those within the tennis community.

 

The “Rally For Bally” will feature a variety of current tennis stars and legends including Andy Murray, Martina Navratilova, Marion Bartoli, Agnieszka Radwanska and Petra Kvitova taking part in mixed doubles exhibition matches across Great Britain at the Aegon Championships at Queen’s Club, the Aegon Classic in Birmingham and the Aegon International in Eastbourne. All funds raised will go to the Royal Marsden Cancer Charity and the Elena Baltacha Foundation, the charity attached to the Elena Baltacha Academy of Tennis.

 

“‘Rally For Bally’ is a great way to celebrate the never ending contributions Elena Baltacha has made to the game of tennis,” said WTA Chairman and CEO Stacey Allaster. “The WTA family is committed to keeping Bally’s dream, memory and legacy alive and through our efforts we hope to mobilize our fan base to give generously to this vitally important cause.”

 

In addition to “Rally For Bally”, the WTA fundraising initiative will see players, tournaments and staff worldwide donating directly to the Elena Baltacha Foundation, the charity founded four years ago to give more children from all backgrounds the opportunity to play tennis.  WTA players will have the opportunity to donate a percentage of their prize money at upcoming grass court events at Birmingham, Eastbourne, ‘s-Hertogenbosch and The Championships, Wimbledon.

 

Baltacha was diagnosed with liver cancer just two months after retiring from professional tennis and just a few weeks after marrying longtime coach and partner Nino Severino. The former British No.1 succumbed to the disease on May 4, 2014, at 30 years of age.

 

Fans worldwide can donate to “Rally For Bally” by visiting http://www.justgiving.com/rallyforbally.

 

Related articles:

Former British No. 1 Elena Baltacha Dies from Liver Cancer

Tennis Reacts to the Passing of Elena Baltacha

Wimbledon Champions Marion Bartoli and Andy Murray Unite at Rally for Bally

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Wimbledon Champions Marion Bartoli and Andy Murray Unite at Rally for Bally

Andy Murray Courtesy of adidas

(June 6, 2014) LTA – Marion Bartoli will share a court with fellow Wimbledon singles champion Andy Murray as part of the Rally For Bally on June 15th.

 

Bartoli and Murray, both of whom lifted Wimbledon trophies at The Championships in 2013, will join with Ross Hutchins at The Queen’s Club, which hosts one of three Rally For Bally fundraising matches all being held that day.

 

The Rally For Bally is part of a national fundraising effort being held in memory of former British number one Elena Baltacha, who died of liver cancer on 4th May this year. As well as a host of fundraising events all over the country, mixed doubles exhibition matches are being held on June 15th as part of the Aegon Championships at The Queen’s Club, Aegon Classic in Birmingham and the Aegon International in Eastbourne.

 

Bartoli, Murray and Hutchins – plus one or more other female players yet to be announced – will entertain the crowds at The Queen’s Club. Anne Keothavong, Tim Henman, Martina Navratilova and Jamie Murray will be in action in Birmingham, and Eastbourne will see Petra Kvitova, Greg Rusedski, Agnieszka Radwanska and Johnny Marray and others all take to the courts as tennis unites behind the Rally For Bally cause.

 

The Rally For Bally, via the Just Giving page, has already raised almost £45,000 in text and online donations. All money raised will be split between the Royal Marsden Cancer Charity (which successfully treated Ross Hutchins last year) and the Elena Baltacha Academy of Tennis, the charity attached to Elena’s tennis academy in Ipswich.

 

Marion Bartoli said: “Bally was my friend and I want to do everything I can to help the Rally For Bally. She was a lovely person and she always wanted to help other people, so everybody coming together like this is a really great tribute to her.”

 

“I’m looking forward to being back on a grass-court again, especially with Andy. I’m sure it will bring back lots of good memories of Wimbledon for both of us.”

 

A Rally For Bally JustGiving page has been set up, and donations can be made quickly and easily here: www.justgiving.com/RallyForBally. Or, text “EBAL60 £10″ to 70070, to make, for example, a £10 donation via your mobile phone.

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Tennis News & Net Notes

Most clicked-on players: The WTA Tour rounds up the Top 20 most clicked-on players of 2013… #20 to #11 can be seen here.

Marion Bartoli Day 2 Press Conference

Marion Bartoli: #15 of the top 20 most clicked on WTA players in 2013

Year End Stats: From ATP World Tour: 2013 by the Numbers: First-time Winners, Qualifiers, and Doubles.

Djokovic 9 228

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Junior Orange Bowl, Day 3: Results and match reports from ITF Tennis.

Waiting for the Murray effect: LTA tennis funding at risk in Britain after decline in players via The Telegraph

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Marion Bartoli Announces Retirement After Loss at Western & Southern Open

 

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(August 14, 2013) 2013 Wimbledon Ladies’ champion Marion Bartoli has announced her retirement from tennis after losing her match to Simona Halep 3-6, 6-4, 6-1 at the Western & Southern Open on Wednesday night in Mason, Ohio.

“Well, it’s never easy and obviously there is never a time to say it or whatever, but that was actually the last match of my career, ” Bartoli said to open her post-match news conference.  “Sorry.”

“It’s time for me to retire and to call it a career.  I feel it’s time for me to walk away actually.”

The 28-year-old Frenchwoman ranked No. 7 in the world continued: “I made my dream a reality and it will stay forever with me, but now my body just can’t cope with everything.”

Bartoli said her achilles heel, shoulder, hips and lower back hurt constantly when she played.

“My body just can’t do it anymore.  I’ve been already through a lot of injuries since the beginning of the year.  I’ve been on the tour for so long, and I really push through and leave it all during that Wimbledon.

“I really felt I gave all the energy I have left inside my body.  I made my dream a reality and it will stay forever with me, but now my body just can’t cope with everything.”

So what does Bartoli plan on doing in the future? “Oh, gosh, I don’t know,” she said.  “I haven’t think about it so much.  There is so many things to do in life rather than playing tennis, so I’m sure I will find something.  I just need a bit of time to kind of settle down.”

“It’s been a tough decision to take.  I don’t take this easily.  I mean, I’ve been a tennis player for a long time, and I had the chance to make my biggest dream a reality.  I felt I really, really push through the ultimate limits to make it happen.

“But now I just can’t do it anymore.”

 

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Tennis News Net Notes for for Wednesday, August 14, 2013

A brief look at the news headlines of the day in the tennis world.

Marion-Bartoli-Day-2-Press-Conference1-e1342178509523

– Wimbledon champion Marion Bartoli has announced her retirement from tennis after losing her match to Simona Halep 3-6, 6-4, 6-1 at the Western & Southern Open on Wednesday night in Mason, Ohio.

The 28-year-old Frenchwoman said in a post-match news conference: “I made my dream a reality and it will stay forever with me, but now my body just can’t cope with everything.”

Bartoli said her Achilles, shoulder, hips and lower back hurt when she plays.

“but my body just can’t do it anymore.  I’ve been already through a lot of injuries since the beginning of the year.  I’ve been on the tour for so long, and I really push through and leave it all during that Wimbledon.

“I really felt I gave all the energy I have left inside my body.  I made my dream a reality and it will stay forever with me, but now my body just can’t cope with everything.”

-The United States Tennis Association has called a news conference for Thursday to reveal plans for a makeover for the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center.

Plans include a retractable roof over Arthur Ashe Stadium, along with two other stadiums and a plaza where spectators can view the practice courts.

Nicole Gibbs

Nicole Gibbs

-The USTA has announced the women’s wild cards for the US Open. Spots in the main draw will go to ttwo-time NCAA singles champion Nicole Gibbs, U.S. Fed Cup team member Vania King, rising young Americans Alison Riske, Shelby Rogers and Maria Sanchez and USTA Girls’ 18s national champion Sachia Vickery. Australia’s Ashleigh Barty and France’s Pauline Parmentier also will receive US Open main draw wild cards.

Players receiving 2013 US Open qualifying wild cards are: Jan Abaza, Brooke Austin, a USTA Girls’ 18s National Championships semifinalist; local teenager Louisa Chirico who reached the girls’ singles semifinals at both the French Open and Wimbledon this year; Victoria Duval, the 2012 USTA Girls’ 18s national champion; Allie Kiick, this USTA Girls’ 18s National Championships singles runner-up and doubles champion each of the last two years; local teenager Jamie Loeb, a 2013 Wimbledon junior singles quarterfinalist; Brianna Morgan, a freshman at Florida this year who won her first pro singles title in June; and Taylor Townsend, who made history in 2012 as the first American girl in 30 years to hold the year-end No. 1 world junior ranking.

– According to L’Equipe, Jo-Wilfred Tsonga has withdrawn from the US Open with a knee injury which has kept him off the tour.

Jack Sock

Jack Sock

-Former Top 10 player Fernando Verdasco and up-and-coming American Jack Sock have joined the singles field for the 2013 Winston-Salem Open.

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For Wimbledon Champion Marion Bartoli a Focus on One Match at a Time

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By Brodie Elgin

(August 7, 2013) TORONTO – Every player deals with winning their first grand slam in different ways. For some, the pressure of becoming the hunted is a daunting proposition. For others, it’s a relief. On Monday, Marion Bartoli admitted that the month of attention following her Wimbledon crown was exciting, and allowed her to participate in off court activities she might have never had a chance to do otherwise. If there were to be fears of complacency from Bartoli following such great success and the perks that come with it, she started the process of erasing those Wednesday afternoon in Toronto.

 

Taking on young American Lauren Davis (who beat Svetlana Kuznetsova twice to reach the second round, once in qualifying and once again after Kuznetsova won a lucky loser into the first round), Bartoli took no time to race to a commanding 6-0 lead. Her two handed forehand and backhand appear to have the same zip as they did a month ago at Wimbledon, even in the slower Toronto conditions. These extreme grips allow her to sometimes create obscure angles which put Davis consistently into a defensive mode.

 

Bartoli admitted to being surprised at how well she was playing considering the pressure surrounding the match. “Yeah, I was surprised that I [started] so well, honestly. I didn’t play on the hard court since Monterrey in Mexico, which I believe was [in] the beginning of April. I didn’t want to put too much pressure on myself, because the last two times I played in Toronto, I lost first round.” While Davis managed to find her way into the second set, she was still largely overwhelmed by the recent Wimbledon champion, falling 6-0, 6-3. “I just wanted to enjoy myself on the court and try my hardest, said Bartoli. ” Obviously being able to win 6-0, 6-3 was pretty good for me. I played well, and I’m very pleased with the way I handled everything.”

 

For Bartoli, the goal is to focus on one match at a time, with an eye at making a serious run at the US Open. While the hamstring is still a concern for her, she seemed confident that it should not become a serious issue. “My hamstring is getting better and better. The summer is a grueling season. You have to be really fit and ready. I’m just working on a daily basis to make sure I’m getting stronger and stronger on it so I don’t feel the same pain as I did in Wimbledon.”

 

Bartoli takes on Magdalena Rybarikova in her third round match on Thursday.

 

Brodie Elgin is the writer of mindtheracket.com. You can also follow him on Twitter at @MindTheRacket. He is covering the Rogers Cup in Toronto for Tennis Panorama News, follow @TennisNewsTPN for updates.

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Bartoli Pulls Out of Stanford

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(July 18, 2013) Three-time Stanford finalist and reigning Wimbledon champion Marion Bartoli has announced that she is withdrawing from the 2013 event due to a hamstring strain.

“During Wimbledon I developed a strain in my hamstring which has not healed over the past two weeks,” said Bartoli. “I have been receiving therapy and was optimistic that I would be able to participate in the Bank of the West Classic as it is one of my favorite tournaments on the circuit.  Unfortunately, the injury has not completely healed and I will be unable to participate.”

With the withdrawal former Stanford All-American Mallory Burdette automatically moves into the main draw. Burdette, who turned professional shortly after last year’s Bank of the West Classic, reached the third round of last year’s US Open and has risen quickly up the world rankings. She is currently No. 78.

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Wimbledon Dream Comes True for Marion Bartoli as she Captures 2013 Title

 

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(July 6, 2013) Back when she was a 6-year-old girl, Marion Bartoli pretended to play match point on the Wimbledon Centre court. She dreamed of winning what she deemed the most coveted Grand Slam trophy. As Don Quixote had a quest and dreamed the impossible dream, Bartoli’s impossible dream came true on Saturday at Centre Court at Wimbledon when as the 15th seed she defeated No. 23 Sabine Lisicki 6-1, 6-4 to capture the title, her first Grand Slam crown.

“(Wimbledon) has been my dream,” Bartoli said.  “I wanted that so badly.  I felt the achievement of my career was to win a Grand Slam.  Every time I was just saying my goal was to win a Grand Slam.

 

Bartoli fist pump

 

“It was like, yeah, dare to dream.  I kept dreaming.  I kept my head up.  I kept working hard, and it just happened.”

It wasn’t a match filled with precision and accuracy, it was mostly error-ridden, with a total of 39 unforced errors combined, but the Frenchwoman will take it.

 

10062012 China Open Bartoli smiles in press

“I was there in 2007 and I missed it,” said Bartoli, who lost in the final of Wimbledon that year to Venus Williams. “I know how it feels, Sabine, and I’m sure you will be there one more time. I have no doubt about it.”

Bartoli led off the match having her serve broken, but then stormed back winning the next six in succession and 11 of the next 12, which took her to a 6-1, 5-1 lead.

Bartoli had three match points on Lisicki’s serve at 5-1, but the German rallied to hold and win the next two games, forcing Bartoli to serve for the match a second time. Bartoli took the game at love, clinching the title with an ace.

After falling to her knees in exultation, Bartoli, after shaking hands with her opponent climbed into the “Friend’s Box” and hugged 2006 Wimbledon champion and France’s Fed Cup Captain and sometimes coach Amelie Mauresmo, her father, friends and supporters.

“I’ve been practicing my serve for so long,” Bartoli said of closing the match with an ace. “At least I saved it for the best moment.”

Bartoli gets $2.4 million for winning The Championships, her biggest-ever paycheck and her first title of any sort since 2011.

“It will not change me as a person because I will always remain the same: very humble, very low‑key and easygoing, down‑to‑earth,” Bartoli said in regard to winning Wimbledon.

”But just hearing ‘Wimbledon champion,’ that kind of sounds good to me,” she said with a smile.

And so Bartoli has reached what was an unreachable star.

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Lisicki Fights Off Radwanska while Bartoli Dominates Flipkens to Reach Wimbledon Final

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(July 4, 2013) Germany’s Sabine Lisicki has made her first Wimbledon final with a hard-fought match win over No. 4 seed Agnieszka Radwanska 6-4, 2-6, 9-7. For Lisicki who had the upset of women’s draw when she beat No. 1 Serena Williams in the round of 16, will play France’s Marion Bartoli next for the title. Bartoli beat Kirsten Flipkens of Belgium 6-1, 6-2 reaching her second Wimbledon final. The Frenchwoman lost to Venus Williams in 2007 in straight sets.

Saturday’s final will be only the second women’s major final in the Open era to feature two women who have never claimed a Grand Slam title.

Lisicki’s game demonstrates power and aggression, on both her serve and her groundstrokes. Lisicki fortunes turned in the second set as her service games were not as dominant and Radwanska’s game of retrieval and variety pushed past the German 6-2.

Radwanska zoomed to a 3-0 lead in the third set, the Lisicki rallied to equal the set three-all. Both women held serve until the ninth game when the Pole was broken. Lisicki, serving for the match at 5-4 could not complete the task with Radwanska breaking for 5-5. A break by Lisicki in the 15th game followed by a hold gave Lisicki game, set, match and her first crack at a chance to win a Wimbledon crown.

“I’m just so happy,” Lisicki said.  “Couldn’t be any better, and couldn’t be any better place to play the first Grand Slam final.”

“Fought out there.”

Lisicki admitted that her win over Serena Williams helped her make it through her match today.

“I thought, `I’ve done it against Serena so you can do it today as well, just hang in there,'” Lisicki said. “It gave me so much confidence and I’m just so, so happy I was able to finish it.”

Lisicki who has come back from many an injury talked about those who gave her inspiration:

“Hermann Maier.  You know, I read his book while I was injured.  You know, almost losing his leg and then to come back and be the world champion in his sport, I think was an unbelievable story.

“Also Drew Brees, an American football player, quarterback.  Nobody believed he could come back after almost his shoulder ‑‑ he has torn everything there was in the shoulder, and he still came back and was one of the best, so… “

Bartoli’s semifinal was not very dramatic – from start to finish she crushed her shots and pushed her opponent all over the court in 62 minutes.

“I played great. I executed very well. I hit lobs, passing shots, winners, returns, everything worked out perfectly,” said Bartoli. “When I fell on the grass after match point, it was just so emotional. I dreamed about that moment, about returning to the Wimbledon final.”

Bartoli reflected reaching the final this year versus back in 2007.

“The last time I was so young, in a way,” said the 28-year-old Bartoli.  “I was every time the underdog coming out on the court, which this time it was totally the opposite.  I was this time the highest ranked player and I needed to put out a great performance in order to go through.”

“I think I’ve been able to deal with the pressure really well and keep improving throughout the Championships and keep playing better.  Especially I think today I think I played a great match.”

Going into Saturday’s final the 23-year-old Lisicki holds a career 3-1 lead over Bartoli.

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