June 1, 2016

Roland Garros – Top Seeds Williams and Djokovic Dominate in Opening Wins; Murray Survives in Five

Serena Williams

Serena Williams

(May 24, 2016) Top seeds Serena Williams and Novak Djokovic had easy opening victories at Roland Garros on Tuesday. Williams, the defending champion going for her fourth Paris title destroyed No. 77 Magdalena Rybarikova 6-2, 6-0 in 42 minutes. The 21-time major champion hit 25 winners and made only five unforced errrors.

Sister Venus also advanced in straight sets. The ninth seed defeated No. 82 Anett Kontaveit 7-6 (5), 7-6 (4).

Djokovic is seeking to win his first French Open title to complete a career Grand Slam. The Serb defeated No. 95 Yen-hsun Lu of Taiwan 6-4, 6-1, 6-1. Also reaching the second round easily was nine-time champion Rafael Nadal who blasted past Sam Groth 6-1, 6-1, 6-1.

No. 2 seed completed his first round match which was held over due to darkness, surviving qualifier and former Top 10 player 37-year-old Radek Stepanek 3-6, 3-6, 6-0, 6-3, 7-5.

“It’s unbelievable what he’s doing,” said Murray in an on-court interview. “He had an extremely bad injury last year and was our for eight or nine months. At 37 years old and coming out and fighting like that, playing that way, is unbelievable. I don’t expect to be doing that myself at that age! I’m just glad I managed to get through.”
Australian Open champion and third seed Angelique Kerber was the biggest upset on the day. The German suffering from a left shoulder injury lost to No. 58 Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands. 6-2, 3-6, 6-3. Bertens is fresh off winning a title over the weekend in Nürnberg, where she was a qualifier.

Another major surprise on the women’s side saw No. 5 Victoria Azarenka lose to No. 118-ranked Karin Knapp when she was forced to retire with a knee injury down 6-3, 6-7(6), 4-0.

2010 French Open champion, unseeded Francesca Schiavone lost to Kristina Mladenovic 6-2, 6-4. It was announced on court that Schiavone was retiring, but she set the record straight during her news conference.

“Roland Garros announced my retirement but I didn’t.”

“So you can stand up all of you and go back to work in the office because I didn’t say that. I will announce when I will want to stop.”

 

More to follow…

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Novak Djokovic Could Face Rafael Nadal in the Semifinals of Roland Garros

 

(May 20, 2016) The French Open men’s and women’s singles draws were made in Paris on Friday and No. 1 Novak Djokovic and No. 4 seed, nine-time Roland Garros champion Rafael Nadal could be on a collision course to meet in the semifinals. Nadal moved into the No. 4 seed position when No. 3 Roger Federer withdrew from the tournament on Thursday.

Djokovic comes into Roland Garros seeking the only major tournament he has not won. He’s looking to become the eight man to have a “career slam,” winning each of the four major title at least once. Should the Serb win the French Open, he would hold all four major championships at the same time.

Djokovic has lost in the final of the French Open three out of the past four years. He will begin his quest for the Roland Garros crown against No. 100 in the world Lu Yen-hsun in, while Nadal will play big serving Australian, Sam Groth.

On the other side of the men’s draw, a pair of two-time major champions could meet in the other semifinal – No. 2 Andy Murray and No. 3 seed and defending champion Stan Wawrinka. Murray will play a qualifier in the first round, while Wawrinka will face-off against

The top seed in the women’s draw, Serena Williams is going after her 22nd career major, which would tie her with Steffi Graf on the all-time list, the most in the Open Era. She’s coming off her first tournament win in nine months, winning the Italian Open trophy last weekend on the clay courts of Rome.

A hurdle for the American could come in the quarterfinals, where she is projected to meet No. 5 seed and two-time Australian Open winner Victoria Azarenka. Williams may also have play 2008 French Open champion Ana Ivanovic in the fourth round and reigning Australian Open champion Angelique Kerber in the final four. Williams lost to the German in the Melbourne final.

Williams will open against No. 76 Magdalena Rybarikova.

Williams is the defending champion and is going after her fourth Roland Garros trophy.

In the bottom half of the women’s draw, No. 2 Agnieszka Radwanska could play fourth seed Garbine Muguruza in the semifinals.

Play begins on Sunday, May 22.

Men’s draw

Women’s draw

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“On the Call” with Tennis Channel Analyst and International Tennis Hall of Famer Tracy Austin

(May 16, 2016) On Monday Tennis Channel Analyst and International Tennis Hall of Famer Tracy Austin held a media conference call to talk about the upcoming French Open and other tennis topics.

 

On evaluating Serena Williams game right now going into the French Open:

I think we certainly had a lot of questions about Serena’s game going into Rome because she had to pull out of Madrid with the flu and therefore took seven weeks off.

“And she was only going to have that one warm‑up red clay court tournament before Roland‑Garros.  And Serena came out playing extremely well right from the first match.

“A little bit of hiccup in her early first set against McHale, but for the most part, for the rest of the week, she was moving well.  She was striking the ball cleanly.

“She had a good temperament, because when we saw her lose to Sveta in the fourth round in Miami, Serena didn’t look that happy to be on the court.  She didn’t play well the last two sets.  Won the first set.

“So I think it was a really positive week for Serena, and I think she seems to be in a good place tennis‑wise and mentally prior to Roland‑Garros.

 

On some of the other top women to watch in Paris:

“We’ve called it topsy‑turvy this year on the WTA tour.  And I was possibly expecting or hoping for someone to come through and be more consistent for the red clay court tournaments.

“And we see (Angelique) Kerber come through and win Stuttgart but then lose early the next two tournaments.  And then you see Halep who wins Madrid but then loses early in Rome. (Victoria) Azarenka who obviously won the Sunshine Double in Indian Wells and Miami and beat Serena in the finals of Indian Wells in straight sets.

“You’re thinking, okay, this is building, this is looking good.  She still only lost two times this year.  But she’s been hampered by a back injury that she sustained in Madrid and had to pull out prior to her third round and then didn’t play well against Begu because she was obviously compromised, didn’t have much velocity on her serve.

“So for Vika, who is a former semifinalist at the French, I think it’s all about this week and her preparation.  Only she knows how her back is feeling and whether she’s been able to alleviate that pain and get back on the practice court.

“But Vika, I certainly see, if she’s able to get healthy, you know, get a draw where she can play herself in, maybe give herself a little more time and do a few matches, I think Vika is someone that we all need to pay attention to, because we saw her take Serena to three sets last year three times, had three match points on Serena at Madrid last year, took her to three sets at the French.

“The big question mark is how healthy is Vika and how long has she been healthy.  How many reps has she been able to ‑‑ how much time has she been able to spend on the practice court.

“So as I said, the other ones to look for:  Halep former French Open finalist and won Madrid, looking spectacular, losing just one set to Begu.  Her backhand is always on target.  But her forehand was on target.  Looked positive emotionally, which sometimes can waver and in fact it wavered in Rome.  And Kerber in Stuttgart who just played gutsy there to defend her title for the first time in her career.

“But again lost early the next couple of matches.  But Kerber has been to the quarters, I think, once.  And I think with her newfound success in winning the Australian Open she knows how to navigate her way better through a major and probably feels a lot more confidence in her game that she can problem solve in difficult situations.  So she’ll be interesting.

“And I’ll talk about Muguruza, who is a two‑time quarterfinalist there, obviously beat Serena in the second round a few years back.  And she looked really good.  Madison took her out in the semis in Rome.  But she’s been making improvements.  A slow start to the year for her.

“So I also look for some outliers, Kvitova, who got to the semis of Stuttgart, but early losses or maybe, let’s say, midline losses at the next couple of tournaments.

“And Keys, Keys is somebody who is my outsider, because Madison played spectacular tennis; more importantly, I’m going to take the word “spectacular” out.  I’m going to say smart tennis and remained calm throughout all of her matches in beating two top players Kaviva and Muguruza on the way to the finals.

“And we’ve all been talking about the weapons that Madison has had for years:  Huge serve, the massive forehand, the sheer power that she has.  But it’s always been about shot selection and sometimes not always the smartest shot selection.

“But she was much more patient in building her points; and no matter what the score was, she stayed calm and didn’t pull the trigger too quickly.  So those were huge strides for Madison Keys this week.

On the former No. 1 American Junior Taylor Townsend earning a wildcard into the French:

 

“In February she was .382.  It’s hugely significant.  If I counted the matches correctly, I think it’s 18 matches that she played in those three events.  So getting to the finals of two and winning one.

“I love that consistency.  It wasn’t just like, oh, winning one and then struggling in another and having midline results in another.

“I liked the fact she was so consistent.  Honestly I did not see any of those matches, so I don’t know.  Taylor’s tremendous talent, leftiness is an advantage and asset, and she uses it well.  So I think Taylor is still young.

“It’s very exciting that she’s had the success.  I hope she uses this wildcard well and also uses this success and is a real springboard for her to, I don’t want to use the word “motivated” because I’m sure she’s remained motivated, but to see she’s close and has the talent.  And this confidence will really pay off.

“I think the talent that Taylor has, because she’s ‑‑ I would talk about her game a little bit more and the leftiness.  Obviously a very live arm on her serve.

“Huge forehand.  Can move ‑‑ not move ‑‑ at the net, she’s very handy about the net, which we see so few of the young players that feel comfortable up there.  She’s got good feel as well.

“So really good foundation to build on.  And I think it’s about finding her way and gaining confidence, and these three results will really help.

 

On equal pay in tennis:

“And I don’t think that woman would have a problem playing three out of five sets.  And I think also on the men’s side, oftentimes three out of five is too long.  And so I think women, if they were asked again to play three out of five, that wouldn’t be a problem.

“For me, it’s not about the length.  When you go to a concert, it’s not how long this one plays or a man plays or a woman plays, it’s just about the entertainment value.

“It’s worked for this many years.  I think that until someone comes up with ‑‑ maybe men should go to two out of three.  Maybe it will make it more interesting and feel a sense of urgency.

“I know at the Olympics, I felt that, when I was covering it in London in 2012.  You know, you didn’t have that ability on the men’s side to kind of lose that first set, because there was that sense of urgency.  It was two out of three, I think up until a certain round.  So there’s so many variations that could be thought of.”

 

Thoughts on the men, coming into the French Open:

I do think it’s fascinating because of the results on red clay.  Last week on Tennis Channel I picked Djokovic.  I still pick Djokovic.  But Andy (Murray) winning and the way that he won certainly makes the conversation a lot more interesting.

“Also the fact that Rafa (Nadal) has played at such a high level the last few months, that makes it more interesting as well.

“Rafa, last year, his fluctuations were higher than we have ever seen as far as he would play well and we’d think he’s getting back on track and then he would slip a little bit and then he would play well again.

“It was back and forth, kind of this yo‑yo effect, and he couldn’t really gain traction.  Whereas, I feel like in the last month, on the European red clay, he’s really gained that traction, winning in Monte Carlo and Barcelona.

“And he had a great match this last week in the quarters against Novak.  As Rafa said, it was so very, very close.  That gave him, even though he lost, it gave him a lot of confidence, that he’s now hitting his backhand more firmly, with more penetration.  He’s standing closer to the baseline.

“He’s using a philosophy that he needs to get a lot of first serves in.  He’s serving in the 70s and the low 80s and a couple of his matches, 84 percent, 85 percent of first serves in, serving a little bit further over from the center T on the ad side to get a little bit more angle with his slice.

“Just overall looking a lot more Rafa‑like on clay.  So that’s exciting.  He’s definitely playing at a different confidence level.  Andy Murray might be the biggest surprise.  As he said, he’s finally feeling, in the last couple of years, comfortable moving on the clay.  And he kind of chuckled about it that it took him 10 years to feel this comfortable to slide, to move, and a guy who is such a good athlete with such incredible balance.  We’ve seen his results so consistent each week got better, the semis and then a final, I think it was in Madrid and winning in Rome and beating Rafa along the way.  Beating Djokovic along the way and straight sets no less.

“Let me say one thing, Djokovic might have been beat up a little bit in that final because he had a long match with Rafa and a long match with Kay as well.  But still it’s so impressive the way that Andy was just a lot more penetrating.

“He obviously had a new mindset that he had to strike his ground strokes more powerfully.  I think it was like eight miles per hour faster that he was hitting his ground strokes.  He was hitting his second serve a little bit quicker as well.  Attacking the net was more successful in Rome.  His court positioning.

“So overall he looked very confident.  So I would say those three guys, unfortunately I think Roger has not had enough reps and his back, you know, wasn’t good losing to Thiem.  He really didn’t stretch and change direction and he kind of knew that going in that he was just looking for matches but he didn’t really expect to go to go deep in Rome.  Unfortunately for Roger I think it’s going to be a different Roland‑Garros meaning, I don’t think he’s part of that top tier equation.”

 

On the progress of “young guns” on tour including Taylor Fritz, Nick Kyrgios,Borna Coric, Zverev:

 

“I picked my outlier this year at the French with Kyrgios, the way that he ‑‑ I think he beat Stan.  He beat another top player, like who else did he beat on clay this year?  And then he took Rafa to three sets.

“The way he can hit through the court and just hit winners.  The talent is off the chart.  He’s just dripping with talent.  It’s a question about maintaining that mental balance and he struggled with that.

“I think he’s possibly maturing some.  But I expect him to be a future No. 1, future right at the top of the game.

“I also loved Zverev’s progress.  I think he’s ranked in the 40s now.  And we’ve seen obviously a matchpoint away from beating Rafa at Indian Wells.  Didn’t get it.  But the kid just keeps improving month to month.  It’s not year to year.  It’s not every four months.  It’s just every single time he plays a tournament, seems like he’s gaining valuable experience and knowledge and seems to have pretty all‑court game already.  A huge serve.  Tall.  He’s thin.

“So he’s going to get stronger.  That’s going to take time.  But terrific technically sound ground strokes.  Love his backhand.  Seems in the forecourt pretty comfortable.  Great attitude.

“I love Zverev as well.  Coric to me is very steady.  Talk about him as the mini Djokovic.  And to me I don’t see his high level quite as high because I don’t see the obvious weapons.

“And then Taylor, I think Taylor is ranked about 70 now.  You think about the fact he lost in the Junior Finals last year and now he’s ranked 72 in the world.  That is some incredible progress.  And Taylor has a massive serve.  Unbelievable forehand.  Solid, solid backhand moving much better.

“He grew up with my son.  I’ve seen Taylor since the time he was 10 years old.  Always had great demeanor.  Just a phenomenal kid, by the way.  And I don’t say that about a ton of kids.  I don’t give those compliments out easily.

“Working on his backhand slice, working in his skills in the forecourt, which needs some work.  But the progress has been outstanding.

 

After Andy Murray parted ways with coach Amélie Mauresmo, Austin was asked about if there will be a time when we’ll see more women coaches coaching men or women in the future:

 

As I said on Tennis Channel this week, tennis ball is a tennis ball, and you don’t get anybody out there smarter than Martina (Navratilova), she knows the game, the ins and outs of anybody.

“It’s just a question of how it fits in the schedule.  Andy put it well, and I love Andy, he was such a advocate for Amélie, the fact first of all he hired her, first top male to have a woman coach.  Really says a lot about Andy and the way he was raised by Judy, that he had such confidence they worked well.

“As Andy said, he was struggling when Amélie came on board and he got his game back together.  And I think it was really telling as well when he said since Australia to like where he was at it was two weeks ago, they had spent ten days together.  And that’s just not enough time for a coach to make an impact and therefore he felt probably the need to find someone that could spend more time.

“That was not anything, a knock against Amélie or how she was performing as a coach.  Amélie had a son in August.  And that would be my guess as to where the problem lies; Amélie didn’t want to spend as much time on the road.  So that’s possibly why you don’t see as many women on tour if they have young kids.

“I would not want to coach right now.  I really want to stay home with my kids.  Something possibly for the future.  But I would like to see more women that would like to coach have that opportunity.”

 

Picks for the French Open:

 

“I’ve been talking about it for a week.  As soon as I saw Serena play so well, it’s tough to bet against Serena, three‑time champion there, and Halep is a finalist.

“But other than that, most of the others have been one semis, maybe a quarter or two.  So Serena is my clear favorite the way she’s played so well, was so engaged in Rome.

“The men became more difficult, which makes it exciting.  Because as someone said, I’m picking Djokovic, but yet Nadal is playing so much better and the guy’s won it nine times.  So so much interest there because Djokovic obviously going for his last Grand Slam to achieve the Calendar‑Year Grand Slam.

“So a lot of interest.  I’m very excited to go back to Paris.  I haven’t been there in over a decade.  Very excited to be working with Tennis Channel.  Love the Tennis Channel team and call it the Tennis Channel Family.

“So my son will be playing in the juniors there as well in either the junior qualifying or possibly the main draw.  So that will be of extra interest to me the second week.”

Tracy Austin will part of the broadcast team for Tennis Channel’s coverage of the French Open.

Related article:

Tennis Channel 2016 French Open Coverage Schedule

Tennis Channel 2016 French Open Coverage Schedule

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Andy Murray Gives Himself a Birthday Present While Serena Williams Wins Fourth Rome Title

Andy Murray fh

(May 15, 2016) Andy Murray gave himself a gift for his 29th birthday – a Rome Masters Series 1000 title. The Scotsman beat No. 1 Novak Djokovic 6-3, 6-3 for his 12 Masters title on Sunday.

Joining Murray in the winners circle was No. 1 Serena Williams who won the women’s singles title over Madison Keys 7-6(5), 6-3 in the first All-American women’s clay court final since Serena beat her sister Venus in the 2002 French Open final.

This was Williams’ fourth Rome title, first tournament win of 2016 and first championship title since she won the Cincinnati event last August.

Serena gets ready for bh 3112016

“It feels great,” Williams said. “So it’s not like I was playing every week. So that’s kind of how I look at it. But it feels great to win a title, especially on clay.”

Murray’s victory makes him the first British male player since 1931 to win the Italian Open. He has also secured the No. 2 seed at the upcoming French Open, which begins on May 22.

The Scotsman now is 22-5 in 2016, ending the Serb’s 17-match winning streak against Top 10 opponents.
“”It’s mostly great players have won this event, so I’m very proud to have my name on the trophy,” Murray said. “Today against Novak is nice. I know he didn’t play his best today. But there were still some tough moments for me in the second set. I saved the break points well and held strong. And overall it was a great week for me. I didn’t lose a set.”

“I had a long couple of weeks, especially the last couple of days,” Djokovic said. “I knew it’s going to be very hard for me, an uphill ride against Andy today, who was playing throughout the week at a very high level. To compete with him in long exchanges and rallies that we do have in our encounters, they require a lot more energy and better performance from my side which didn’t happen.

“Not taking anything away from Andy’s win. On the contrary, I think he deserved to win and deserved to win the entire tournament, because he was the best player. He was the player that played in the best form throughout the entire tournament.”
Serena Williams spoke to the crowd in Italian during the trophy presentation. This was her 70th career title.

The Bryan Brothers won their fourth Rome title and 36th Masters 1000 level, defeating Vasek Pospisil and Jack Sock.

“We’re sharing a room this week,,” said Bob Bryan. [Mike] fell asleep around 2:30, 2:45 a.m., because he started snoring. We drank so much coffee last night that I was wired. It was a 12-hour turnaround. Our bodies don’t turn around quickly anymore.”

“The rain delay definitely helped us,” Mike Bryan said. “Our coach [David Macpherson] was back in the locker room, where we had about 15 minutes, and he said, ‘Fire it up!’ We were kind of flat in the first set and weren’t playing with a lot of energy. We had a late match and Bob went to bed at 4 a.m. in the morning. So we were kind of dazed and confused. We were bouncing around in the second set. We played a good Match tie-break, which can go either way.”

This was the Bryan Brothers 112 tournament victory together as a team.

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Djokovic Survives Test From Nadal to Reach Italian Open Semis; Serena Williams Dominates

Djokovic celebrates win-001

(May 13, 2016) Novak Djokovic came back from a break down in both sets and set points down in the second set to fight off Rafael Nadal 7-5, 7-6(4) to reach the semifinals of the Italian Open on Friday in Rome. The dramatic match lasted almost two-and-a-half hours. The world No. 1 has now beaten the 14-time major champion seven straight times and has raised his record to 26-23 over the current No. 5. The Serb has now won 15 straight sets against the Spaniard.

Nadal grabbed opening breaks of serve in both sets and had five set points in the second set  serving at 5-4, but Djokovic kept coming back from adversity.

“I held my nerve at the clutch moments,” Djokovic said in an interview after the match. “Even though I had nervy beginnings to both sets, with some good games and good play in the crucial moments, I managed to win. It’s a straight-sets win, but it feels like we played five sets.

“Winning against Nadal is the ultimate challenge on clay courts and one of the toughest challenges we have in sport. I have to be very pleased with the way I handled myself in the big moments today. I won against one of my biggest rivals on his preferred surface. We must not forget he’s in form. He won Monte-Carlo and Barcelona and has played well the past couple of weeks. That gives me confidence for the rest of this tournament.”

Djokovic said that it was special to be on court playing against Nadal.

Nadal said that he was not disappointed and felt that he played well against the best player.

Djokovic will face-off against Kei Nishikori in his semifinal on Saturday. The sixth seed Nishikori beat 13th seed Dominic Thiem 6-3, 7-5.

No. 2 seed Andy Murray moved into the final four with a 6-1, 7-5 win over David Goffin. Murray will play French lucky loser Lucas Pouille for s spot in the final on Saturday. Pouille advanced when Juan Monaco withdrew with a left hip injury.

On the women’s side, No. 1 ranked Serena Williams, getting a little revenge from her loss in Miami, when she demolished Svetlana Kuznetsova 6-2, 6-0 in 51 minutes. She’ll play Irina-Camelia Begu next who beat Misaki Doi 6-2, 7-6 (3).

On the bottom half of the draw, Garbine Muguruza beat Timea Bacsinszky 7-5, 6-2 and will play Madison Keys, who defeated Barbora Strycova 6-4, 4-6, 6-3.

 

INTERNAZIONALI BNL D’ITALIA – ROME, ITALY
9-15 MAY 2016

RESULTS – MAY 13, 2016
Women’s Singles – Quarterfinals
[1] S. Williams (USA) d [9] S. Kuznetsova (RUS) 62 60
[3] G. Muguruza (ESP) d [11] T. Bacsinszky (SUI) 75 62
I. Begu (ROU) d M. Doi (JPN) 62 76(3)
M. Keys (USA) d B. Strycova (CZE) 64 46 63

Women’s Doubles – Quarterfinals
[1] M. Hingis (SUI) / S. Mirza (IND) d R. Atawo (USA) / A. Spears (USA) 64 62
I. Begu (ROU) / M. Niculescu (ROU) d [3] T. Babos (HUN) / Y. Shvedova (KAZ) 76(4) 63
[4] A. Hlavackova (CZE) / L. Hradecka (CZE) d [5] C. Garcia (FRA) / K. Mladenovic (FRA) 64 64
[7] E. Makarova (RUS) / E. Vesnina (RUS) d A. Klepac (SLO) / K. Srebotnik (SLO) 62 64

Men’s Singles – Quarterfinals
[1] N. Djokovic (SRB) d [5] R. Nadal (ESP) 75 76(4)
[2] A. Murray (GBR) d [12] D. Goffin (BEL) 61 75
[6] K. Nishikori (JPN) d [13] D. Thiem (AUT) 63 75
[LL] L. Pouille (FRA) d [PR] J. Monaco (ARG) w.o. (hip)

Men’s Doubles – Quarterfinals
[5] B. Bryan (USA) / M. Bryan (USA) d [4] J. Murray (GBR) / B. Soares (BRA) 63 64
[6] R. Bopanna (IND) / F. Mergea (ROU) d P. Kohlschreiber (GER) / V. Troicki (SRB) 63 64
[8] V. Pospisil (CAN) / J. Sock (USA) d P. Cuevas (URU) / M. Granollers (ESP) 64 76(4)
[PR] J. Benneteau (FRA) / E. Roger-Vasselin (FRA) d O. Marach (AUT) / M. Matkowski (POL) 46 75 10-8

ORDER OF PLAY – SATURDAY, MAY 14, 2016
CENTER COURT start 12:00 noon
WTA – [3] G. Muguruza (ESP) vs M. Keys (USA)

Not Before 2:30 pm
ATP – [LL] L. Pouille (FRA) vs [2] A. Murray (GBR)

Not Before 5:00 pm
WTA – [1] S. Williams (USA) vs I. Begu (ROU)

Not Before 8:00 pm
ATP – [1] N. Djokovic (SRB) vs [13] D. Thiem (AUT) or [6] K. Nishikori (JPN)
ATP – [PR] J. Benneteau (FRA) / E. Roger-Vasselin (FRA) vs [5] B. Bryan (USA) / M. Bryan (USA)

PIETRANGELI start 12:00 noon
WTA – [4] A. Hlavackova (CZE) / L. Hradecka (CZE) vs [7] E. Makarova (RUS) / E. Vesnina (RUS)

Not Before 1:00 pm
ATP – [8] V. Pospisil (CAN) / J. Sock (USA) vs [6] R. Bopanna (IND) / F. Mergea (ROU)
WTA – After Suitable Rest – [1] M. Hingis (SUI) / S. Mirza (IND) vs I. Begu (ROU) / M. Niculescu (ROU)

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Tennis Channel to Air All 21 of Serena Williams’ Major Title Victories Back-to-Back

tennis_channel_logo

(May 12, 2016) LOS ANGELES – Just ahead of the French Open, Tennis Channel will air each one of Serena Williams’ 21 Grand Slam singles titles back-to-back during a marathon that begins on May 15, at 1 p.m. ET. With Roland Garros (commonly referred to as the French Open) approaching, Williams will have the opportunity to win her 22nd Grand Slam title, which would tie her with Steffi Graf for the most major singles titles in the Open Era. This marks the first time the network has aired this many Grand Slam singles title victories back-to-back for a single player.

On the eve of its Roland Garros coverage, Tennis Channel will showcase Serena’s dominance across three days, wrapping up on Tuesday, May 17 (full lineup below). Tennis Channel will take viewers from her very first singles title at age 17 to her most recent major championship at Wimbledon last year at the age of 33.

All 21 finals matches will also be available on Tennis Channel’s digital subscription service Tennis Channel Plus. Williams’ US Open championships will be available for free on the network’s app, Tennis Channel Everywhere.

“Serena is one of the most popular athletes in sports, and we wanted to offer our viewers a reminder of how she got here as she closes in on history,” said Jeremy Langer, vice president, programming, Tennis Channel.

Over the course of the marathon viewers will see many classic matches from Williams’ decorated career. These include:
Williams’ first Grand Slam victory over Martina Hingis at the 1999 US Open
Her five-straight finals wins over older sister Venus Williams
Her most recent stretch of dominance, winning a second “Serena Slam” starting with the 2014 US Open and culminating with her win at Wimbledon in 2015
During Williams’ historic career she has accumulated numerous accomplishments and records:
She is the only player to win three Grand Slam titles after saving match point during the tournament (2003 Australian Open, 2005 Australian Open and 2009 Wimbledon)
She has won 14 of her 21 Grand Slams in straight sets
She defeated her sister Venus five-straight times in finals and six overall in the majors
She has defeated her opponents in Grand Slam finals by a combined margin of 292-189 games
During her most recent “Serena Slam” she became the oldest player, at age 33, to hold all four titles concurrently
Tennis Channel’s Serena Williams Grand Slam Championship Marathon Lineup.
Matches begin at 1 p.m. Sunday, May 15. Full schedule:
tennischannel.com/tv-schedule/daily-view/

Event/Opponent

1999 US Open/Martina Hingis
2002 French Open/Venus Williams
2002 Wimbledon/Venus Williams
2002 US Open/Venus Williams
2003 Australian Open/Venus Williams
2003 Wimbledon/Venus Williams
2005 Australian Open/Lindsay Davenport
2007 Australian Open/Maria Sharapova
2008 US Open/Jelena Jankovic
2009 Australian Open/Dinara Safina
2009 Wimbledon/Venus Williams
2010 Australian Open/Justine Henin
2010 Wimbledon/Vera Zvonareva
2012 Wimbledon/Agnieszka Radwanska
2012 US Open/Victoria Azarenka
2013 French Open/Maria Sharapova
2013 US Open/Victoria Azarenka
2014 US Open/Caroline Wozniacki
2015 Australian Open/Maria Sharapova
2015 French Open/Lucie Safarova
2015 Wimbledon/Garbine Muguruza

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Serena Williams Begins her Clay Season with Win in Rome

(May 10, 2016) Serena Williams played her first clay court match of the season beating Anna-Lena Friedsam 6-4, 6-3 to reach the round of 16 at the Italian Open on Tuesday. The world No. 1 played her first match since losing at the Miami Open in the round of 16 in March.

Williams hit 27 winners during the 75-minute match.

Williams said after the match that she was happy with her level of play. “I think I was really consistent,” she said. “I think I was mentally consistent.”

“I was really concerned how it would be just running and moving and recovering,” said the three-time Rome winner. “But it was fun.”

Williams is 14-3 on the year.

Flavia Pennetta photo courtesy of the WTA and Getty Images

Flavia Pennetta photo courtesy of the WTA and Getty Images

 

Flavia Pennetta, who won the last year’s U.S. Open and retired at the end of the year, was honored on Pietrangeli court.

 

INTERNAZIONALI BNL D’ITALIA – ROME, ITALY
9-15 MAY 2016

RESULTS – MAY 10, 2016
Women’s Singles – Second Round
[1] S. Williams (USA) d A. Friedsam (GER) 64 63
[8] C. Suárez Navarro (ESP) d T. Pereira (BRA) 61 75
First Round
[9] S. Kuznetsova (RUS) d C. Garcia (FRA) 75 64
[11] T. Bacsinszky (SUI) d Y. Wickmayer (BEL) 62 62
[Q] C. McHale (USA) d [WC] C. Giovine (ITA) 61 26 62
S. Stosur (AUS) d [Q] A. Riske (USA) 46 76(5) 61
D. Gavrilova (AUS) d S. Lisicki (GER) 61 76(3)
[Q] M. Duque-Mariño (COL) d M. Niculescu (ROU) 64 61
J. Konta (GBR) d [Q] J. Larsson (SWE) 61 62
L. Tsurenko (UKR) d [Q] J. Goerges (GER) 16 76(5) 63
J. Ostapenko (LAT) d K. Mladenovic (FRA) 63 61
T. Babos (HUN) d [Q] K. Bertens (NED) 61 64
E. Bouchard (CAN) d J. Jankovic (SRB) 64 26 63

Women’s Doubles – First Round
[5] C. Garcia (FRA) / K. Mladenovic (FRA) d M. Krajicek (NED) / B. Strycova (CZE) 61 06 11-9
[6] Y. Chan (TPE) / A. Groenefeld (GER) d C. Chuang (TPE) / D. Jurak (CRO) 62 61
[7] E. Makarova (RUS) / E. Vesnina (RUS) d L. Kichenok (UKR) / O. Savchuk (UKR) 64 63
I. Begu (ROU) / M. Niculescu (ROU) d [WC] S. Kuznetsova (RUS) / A. Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) 46 63 10-7
L. Arruabarrena (ESP) / S. Errani (ITA) d V. King (USA) / A. Kudryavtseva (RUS) 62 46 10-5

 

Men’s Singles – Second Round
[4] S. Wawrinka (SUI) d B. Paire (FRA) 57 62 61
[6] K. Nishikori (JPN) d V. Troicki (SRB) 57 62 63
[8] T. Berdych (CZE) d A. Ramos-Vinolas (ESP) 63 64
[12] D. Goffin (BEL) d J. Sock (USA) 64 64
[PR] J. Monaco (ARG) d [16] K. Anderson (RSA) 36 63 62
[LL] L. Pouille (FRA) d [Q] E. Gulbis (LAT) 36 64 75
Men’s Singles – First Round
[9] D. Ferrer (ESP) d [Q] F. Volandri (ITA) 46 75 61
[15] R. Bautista Agut (ESP) d [WC] P. Lorenzi (ITA) 63 61
[Q] S. Robert (FRA) d [Q] A. Bedene (GBR) 76(3) 76(8)
N. Mahut (FRA) d P. Cuevas (URU) 76(6) 26 75
P. Kohlschreiber (GER) d [Q] I. Cervantes (ESP) 64 62
J. Chardy (FRA) d [Q] D. Dzumhur (BIH) 26 64 62

Men’s Doubles – First Round
O. Marach (AUT) / M. Matkowski (POL) d [WC] F. Fognini (ITA) / A. Seppi (ITA) 46 75 10-6
[PR] J. Benneteau (FRA) / E. Roger-Vasselin (FRA) d R. Klaasen (RSA) / R. Ram (USA) 64 60
D. Thiem (AUT) / A. Zverev (GER) d F. Lopez (ESP) / M. Lopez (ESP) 63 36 10-6
P. Cuevas (URU) / M. Granollers (ESP) d J. Cabal (COL) / R. Farah (COL) 63 64

ORDER OF PLAY – WEDNESDAY, MAY 11, 2016
CENTER COURT start 12:00 noon
ATP – [3] R. Federer (SUI) vs A. Zverev (GER)
ATP – [1] N. Djokovic (SRB) vs [Q] S. Robert (FRA)
WTA – J. Konta (GBR) vs [7] R. Vinci (ITA)

Not Before 7:30 pm
ATP – P. Kohlschreiber (GER) vs [5] R. Nadal (ESP)

Not Before 9:00 pm
WTA – [5] P. Kvitova (CZE) vs M. Keys (USA)

GRANDSTAND start 11:00 am
WTA – E. Makarova (RUS) vs [3] G. Muguruza (ESP)

Not Before 12:00 noon
ATP – J. Sousa (POR) vs [13] D. Thiem (AUT)
ATP – [Q] M. Kukushkin (KAZ) vs [2] A. Murray (GBR)
WTA – D. Gavrilova (AUS) vs [6] S. Halep (ROU)

Not Before 7:00 pm
ATP – G. Garcia-Lopez (ESP) vs [9] D. Ferrer (ESP)

PIETRANGELI start 11:00 am
WTA – [4] V. Azarenka (BLR) vs I. Begu (ROU)
WTA – E. Bouchard (CAN) vs [2] A. Kerber (GER)
ATP – [11] R. Gasquet (FRA) vs A. Seppi (ITA)
ATP – [10] M. Raonic (CAN) vs N. Kyrgios (AUS)

Not Before 6:00 pm
WTA – T. Babos (HUN) vs [12] V. Williams (USA)

COURT 1 start 11:00 am
WTA – [Q] H. Watson (GBR) vs B. Strycova (CZE)
WTA – [Q] C. Mchale (USA) vs [13] A. Ivanovic (SRB)
WTA – [9] S. Kuznetsova (RUS) vs S. Stosur (AUS)
WTA – [10] L. Safarova (CZE) vs M. Doi (JPN)

COURT 2 start 11:00 am
WTA – [Q] M. Puig (PUR) vs J. Ostapenko (LAT)

Not Before 12:30 pm
WTA – L. Tsurenko (UKR) vs [11] T. Bacsinszky (SUI)
ATP – N. Mahut (FRA) vs T. Bellucci (BRA)
ATP – [15] R. Bautista Agut (ESP) vs J. Chardy (FRA)
ATP – [Alt] D. Inglot (GBR) / F. Martin (FRA) vs O. Marach (AUT) / M. Matkowski (POL)

COURT 4 start 11:00 am
WTA – [Q] M. Duque-Mariño (COL) vs D. Kasatkina (RUS)
ATP – S. Johnson (USA) / S. Querrey (USA) vs [5] B. Bryan (USA) / M. Bryan (USA)
ATP – [8] V. Pospisil (CAN) / J. Sock (USA) vs T. Huey (PHI) / M. Mirnyi (BLR)
ATP – After Suitable Rest – [4] J. Murray (GBR) / B. Soares (BRA) vs D. Thiem (AUT) / A. Zverev (GER)
ATP – P. Cuevas (URU) / M. Granollers (ESP) vs [3] J. Rojer (NED) / H. Tecau (ROU)

COURT 6 start 11:00 am
WTA – R. Atawo (USA) / A. Spears (USA) vs C. Liang (CHN) / Y. Wang (CHN)
WTA – [WC] K. Knapp (ITA) / F. Schiavone (ITA) vs [8] J. Goerges (GER) / K. Pliskova (CZE)
WTA – After Suitable Rest – [7] E. Makarova (RUS) / E. Vesnina (RUS) vs K. Bertens (NED) / J. Larsson (SWE)
ATP – After Suitable Rest – [6] R. Bopanna (IND) / F. Mergea (ROU) vs B. Paire (FRA) / J. Sousa (POR)
WTA – [1] M. Hingis (SUI) / S. Mirza (IND) vs S. Hsieh (TPE) / O. Kalashnikova (GEO)

 

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Svetlana Kuznetsova Upsets Serena Williams at Miami Open; Andy Murray Also Ousted

(March 28, 2016) Serena Williams’ twenty match winning streak at the Miami Open was snapped by Svetlana Kuznetsova 6-7 (3), 6-1, 6-2 in the fourth round on Monday.

It’s the first time since 2000 that the American has not reached the quarterfinals of the Miami event. The world No. 1 was trying to win her fourth straight and ninth title in Key Biscayne.

The 34-year-old, 21-time major champion has not won a tournament since winning the event in Cincinnati last August.

“It’s obviously disappointing, but I’ve won here a lot, so it’s okay,” Williams said in her news conference.

“I did the best that I could. My fans, you know, I did the best I could do. I can’t win every match. The players come out and play me like they’ve never played before in their lives.

“You know, the best that I could do today. I have to be 300% every day, so…”

Russian Kuznetsova made only 15 unforced errors to Williams’ 50.  Kuznetsova broke serve 6 times. The 15th seed won Miami back in 2006.

“I’m too old,” Kuznetsova said in her on-court interview. “I’ve been many times on this court. I love being back here, and I’m really happy with my performance.”

“Physically I’m fine,” Williams said. “I don’t know, I guess I didn’t move today. Maybe that was one of the things that didn’t work out for me.”

Asked about if there are too many expectations placed on her, Williams said: “I don’t think there is expectations. I mean, there obviously is expectations, but I think overall I put a lot of expectations on myself more than anything.

“So that’s pretty hard to live up to, is the expectations I put on myself.

“I have so many people saying congratulations I feel like I won the title already,” Kuznetsova told media. “Not real.

“Now these days the tennis is extremely tough and each opponent is really difficult to play. I’m just focusing for tomorrow’s match. I don’t have too much time to rest.

“Really looking forward to give my best another day tomorrow.”

“I knew I had to go for my serves. I think I barely did double fault. I knew I had to go aggressive. If I would give some easy second serves I would get my ass kicked, you know, out there.”

Asked if she thought Williams was struggling, she said: “I mean, you say drama when somebody, No. 1, which is probably one of the greatest in the history of athletes didn’t win four slams. This is drama. For me this would be miracle of the year. For us it’s drama that she didn’t win the fourth Grand Slam of the year.

“She struggled a little bit probably because she lost Australian Open, but, I mean, she is still No. 1 and she still plays great. I don’t see much to be depressed about.”

“I mean, going into today’s match I knew she is not on her top game, but neither was I. I didn’t feel good. I knew I was hang in there and I will fight for each ball.

“It’s her game, as I said, mentioned earlier. She goes for her shots, and I have to move her as more I can and make her do more unforced errors. This is my goal, how I have to win, because I’m not going to overhit her or do more winners than Serena, or do more aces. This is not my game.

“If I put myself and Serena on the paper, that’s what I fight for: for her to make unforced errors, to bring more returns back, to serve better, and I think it worked really well for me today.”

In addition to the top seed falling, the No. 2 on the women’s side also lost. 2012 champion Agnieszka Radwanska,  lost to No. 19 Timea Bacsinszky 2-6, 6-4, 6-2.

A major upset took place on the men’s side as well when No. 2 Andy Murray lost to No. 26 Grigor Dimitrov 6-7 (1), 6-4, 6-3. Dmitrov won the last five games to close the match.

Murray made 55 unforced errors and had his serve broken six times in the match.

“I got myself up 3-1 in the third set, which is a good position to be in, and then the mistakes started creeping in,” Murray said. “That’s nothing to do with adjustments. A lot were unforced errors and just poor mistakes.”

“I made many more mistakes than usual, especially in the third set, so that was surprising for me.

“But, again, I got myself in a winning position, so it’s not like I came out and played like awful stuff the whole match. Just when you get in winning positions you need to put your foot down. The last two tournaments I certainly haven’t done that.”

“In then the third set managed to get up a break and then a lot of unforced errors. Credit to him. He was more solid than me.”

“I’m happy,” Dimitrov said. “Of course I’m happy with that victory. Every time you beat a top player you know you must have done something good.

“As I said, I’m just very happy with the win and just focusing on the next round. I’m not trying to rank anything right now. I’m still in the tournament. Looking for my next opponent. It’s a good win. Still in a way it’s the beginning of the year. Clay is coming after.

“So just focusing on what I have to do.”

There is only one of the top five men’s seeds left – No. 1 Novak Djokovic.

MIAMI OPEN PRESENTED BY ITAU – MIAMI, UNITED STATES

21 MARCH – 3 APRIL, 2016

RESULTS – MARCH 28, 2016
Women’s Singles – Fourth Round
[15] S. Kuznetsova (RUS) d [1] S. Williams (USA) 67(3) 61 62
[2] A. Kerber (GER) d T. Babos (HUN) 62 36 64
[19] T. Bacsinszky (SUI) d [3] A. Radwanska (POL) 26 64 62
[13] V. Azarenka (BLR) d [4] G. Muguruza (ESP) 76(6) 76(4)
[5] S. Halep (ROU) d [WC] H. Watson (GBR) 63 64
[30] E. Makarova (RUS) d [12] E. Svitolina (UKR) 61 64
[22] M. Keys (USA) d I. Begu (ROU) 63 61
[24] J. Konta (GBR) d [32] M. Niculescu (ROU) 62 62

Women’s Doubles – Second Round
M. Gasparyan (RUS) / M. Niculescu (ROU) d [1] M. Hingis (SUI) / S. Mirza (IND) 64 62
[3] B. Mattek-Sands (USA) / L. Safarova (CZE) d D. Kasatkina (RUS) / E. Vesnina (RUS) 62 63

 

Men’s Singles – Third Round
[26] G. Dimitrov (BUL) d [2] A. Murray (GBR) 67(1) 64 63
[6] K. Nishikori (JPN) d [27] A. Dolgopolov (UKR) 62 62
[17] R. Bautista Agut (ESP) d [9] J. Tsonga (FRA) 26 63 76(3)
[12] M. Raonic (CAN) d [22] J. Sock (USA) 76(3) 64
[16] G. Monfils (FRA) d [23] P. Cuevas (URU) 63 64
[24] N. Kyrgios (AUS) d [Q] T. Smyczek (USA) 64 64
D. Dzumhur (BIH) d [Q] M. Kukushkin (KAZ) 46 61 62
An. Kuznetsov (RUS) d A. Mannarino (FRA) 26 75 60

Doubles – Second Round
[4] B. Bryan (USA) / M. Bryan (USA) d R. Bautista Agut (ESP) / V. Troicki (SRB) walkover
[5] P. Herbert (FRA) / N. Mahut (FRA) d A. Qureshi (PAK) / G. Simon (FRA) 62 63
[WC] O. Jasika (AUS) / J. Smith (AUS) d D. Marrero (ESP) / B. Paire (FRA) 63 64
R. Klaasen (RSA) / R. Ram (USA) d [PR] M. Cilic (CRO) / M. Draganja (CRO) 76(10) 60

ORDER OF PLAY – TUESDAY, MARCH 29, 2016
STADIUM start 11:00 am
ATP – [10] R. Gasquet (FRA) vs [7] T. Berdych (CZE)

Not Before 1:00 pm
WTA – [19] T. Bacsinszky (SUI) vs [5] S. Halep (ROU)
ATP – [1] N. Djokovic (SRB) vs [14] D. Thiem (AUT)
ATP – [16] G. Monfils (FRA) vs [26] G. Dimitrov (BUL)

Not Before 7:30 pm
WTA – [15] S. Kuznetsova (RUS) vs [30] E. Makarova (RUS)

Not Before 9:00 pm
ATP – [6] K. Nishikori (JPN) vs [17] R. Bautista Agut (ESP)

GRANDSTAND start 10:50 am
ATP – [LL] H. Zeballos (ARG) vs [15] D. Goffin (BEL)
ATP – [18] G. Simon (FRA) vs L. Pouille (FRA)
ATP – [24] N. Kyrgios (AUS) vs An. Kuznetsov (RUS)

Not Before 5:00 pm
ATP – D. Dzumhur (BIH) vs [12] M. Raonic (CAN)

COURT 1 start 4:00 pm
WTA – [4] T. Babos (HUN) / Y. Shvedova (KAZ) vs C. Dellacqua (AUS) / S. Stosur (AUS)
WTA – M. Gasparyan (RUS) / M. Niculescu (ROU) vs V. King (USA) / A. Kudryavtseva (RUS)

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Miami Open: Rafael Nadal Retires From Match, Serena Williams and Andy Murray Win

(March 26, 2016) Rafael Nadal retired from this match against Damir Dzumhur. Trailing 2-6, 6-4, 3-0 on Saturday at the Miami Open. The 14-time major winner had to call for the trainer three times during the match. It marked only the third time that the world No. 5 has retired from a match, the last time coming in the 2010 Australian Open.

Asked if the heat got to him, Nadal said to media: “Well, everything was fine until end of the first set. I start to feel myself not very good. It’s getting worse, worse, and worse, so finally in the second set I realize that I was not able to keep playing.

“I tried to resist, but I get a little bit scared to be too dizzy and lose a little bit…….
“So I call the doctor a couple of times, but I felt that I was not safe there so I decided to go. I wanted to finish the match, but I seriously could not.”

Hopefully is nothing,” Nadal continued. “Hopefully is just the extreme conditions out there. Something happen, hopefully is the beginning of a virus, and in combination with the conditions I had this strange feelings.”

“Was tough for me because I felt myself I was playing well; I had good practices after playing a great week in Indian Wells.

“It’s a hard accident, but that’s life and it’s like this. If the health is fine in a couple of days, so nothing important is there — the most important thing is health than any tournament. If I am able to practice in a couple of days I know I was playing well and I hope to be ready for the clay.”

“Definitely not the way I wanted to finish,” said Dzumhur. “It was really tough to play today. I felt also really like tired, heavy, in some moments dizzy on the court. In the first set we played very long second game. After that game I felt like I cannot run that well.

“In the first set I really didn’t have chances. Between the first and second set I call medical. I was thinking really about retirement, but just said to myself, I’m playing big Rafa. I’m not having a chance to play every day these big guys. I want to enjoy this moment. So I tried to continue.

“I felt a little bit better after I started to run better, move better on the court, to play better shots. I had some chances. I used it in the second set.

“The third set, very important game was the first game in the third set. He was 40-Love up. I broke him. After that I guess he was not feeling the best. He probably felt the way I felt in the first set. Unfortunately he retired.

“But anyway, that was a big moment for me, that at least I could play with Rafa, and in the end, not the way I wanted, but I won.”
As for the biggest win of his career, although by retirement, the 94- ranked Dzumhur said:” I tried to keep the celebration in me because I didn’t want anybody to see that I’m celebrating when somebody retired.

“But inside of me I felt really proud after everything. I think all the fighting that I had through all the years back and today that I didn’t want to retire and I wanted to fight, that paid off.”

In addition to the No. 5 seed losing, No. 4 Stan Wawrinka also lost. He fell to Andrey Kuznetsov 6-4, 6-3.

 

Serena Williams Photo courtesy of MiamiTennisNews.com

Serena Williams Photo courtesy of MiamiTennisNews.com

On the women’s side, eight-time champion Serena Williams beat the heat and won her 20th straight match at the Miami Open to reach the round of 16 beating Zarina Diyas 7-5, 6-3.

“For me the biggest adjustment I have to make is I usually never use a towel,” Williams said. “Here I might have to go grab the towel in between points.

“That’s it. I’m from California, but I been living here for over 20 years. I love these conditions actually.
“It was definitely humid today,” said the world No. 1. Rafa (Nadal) played like an hour and a half, two hours before me, so that makes a huge difference.

“So I think that he was in the most intense part of the sun; whereas I was kind of at tail end of it. But I was fine.”

Williams will play two-time major champion and friend Svetlana Kuznetsova for a place in the final eight.

“It’s a great matchup,” Williams said. “She plays well and makes a lot of the great shots. She’s actually been playing well this year. She had a couple big wins and couple good tournaments.

“Yeah, I have my work cut out for me. We’ll see what happens.”
No. 2 Andy Murray advanced to the third round with a 6-3, 7-5 win over Denis Istomin of Uzbekistan. The Scot, a two-time champion had a bit of an issue with a ball used in play, which appeared to be one of the balls the women use in the tournament.

“It was just a women’s ball,” he said. “I saw it just before I was about to serve. It’s quite off putting because I just missed two balls long. I didn’t know if that was one of the balls I used in the last couple points. The women’s balls are very different to the men’s balls. They’re much quicker, smaller, livelier.

“Yeah, when you’re just about to serve at break point down, you know, you don’t want to be using a completely different ball.

“So I was just a bit frustrated with that because I didn’t know potentially if on of the points before I had used it or not.

“It’ll be a tough one,” Murray said of his third round match against former top ten Grigor Dimitrov. “He’s obviously a top-quality player. He had a good win today, a tough win, against Delbonis.

“We played here once before; I managed to win that one. I played a bunch of tough matches against him. I think the last one was in Cincinnati where he had a match point. Had a bunch of chances to win that one and I managed to turn it around.”

“I know I’ll need to play good tennis to beat him. You know, also be a little bit more disciplined than I was tonight.”

Other top seeds advancing were No. 6 Kei Nishikori, No. 9 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and No. 12 Milos Raonic. No. 3 John Isner was an upset victim to U.S. countryman qualifier Tim Smyczek 6-2, 2-6, 7-6 (5). Isner ended the match on a double-fault.

An upset on the women’s side saw No. 8 Petra Kvitova beaten by No. 30 Ekaterina Makarova 6-4, 6-4.

RESULTS – MARCH 26, 2016
Women’s
Singles – Third Round

[1] S. Williams (USA) d Z. Diyas (KAZ) 75 63
[3] A. Radwanska (POL) d M. Brengle (USA) 63 62
[5] S. Halep (ROU) d J. Goerges (GER) 64 61
[30] E. Makarova (RUS) d [8] P. Kvitova (CZE) 64 64
[12] E. Svitolina (UKR) d [23] C. Wozniacki (DEN) 57 64 76(1)
[15] S. Kuznetsova (RUS) d C. Garcia (FRA) 46 62 76(6)
[19] T. Bacsinszky (SUI) d [16] A. Ivanovic (SRB) 75 64
[WC] H. Watson (GBR) d Y. Wickmayer (BEL) 36 75 63

Women’s
Doubles – First Round

E. Makarova (RUS) / B. Strycova (CZE) d [2] H. Chan (TPE) / Y. Chan (TPE) 76(2) 64
[3] B. Mattek-Sands (USA) / L. Safarova (CZE) d [WC] M. Keys (USA) / S. Stephens (USA) 64 62
K. Bondarenko (UKR) / O. Savchuk (UKR) d [6] C. Garcia (FRA) / K. Mladenovic (FRA) 63 67(6) 10-5
M. Gasparyan (RUS) / M. Niculescu (ROU) d [WC] M. Puig (PUR) / H. Watson (GBR) 61 26 10-5
S. Errani (ITA) / C. Suárez Navarro (ESP) d [Alt] B. Bencic (SUI) / S. Vogt (LIE) 61 62
D. Kasatkina (RUS) / E. Vesnina (RUS) d C. Chuang (TPE) / C. Liang (CHN) 62 63

Men’s Singles – Second Round
[2] A. Murray (GBR) d D. Istomin (UZB) 63 75
An. Kuznetsov (RUS) d [4] S. Wawrinka (SUI) 64 63
D. Dzumhur (BIH) d [5] R. Nadal (ESP) 26 64 30 ret. (illness)
[6] K. Nishikori (JPN) d [Q] P. Herbert (FRA) 62 76(4)
[9] J. Tsonga (FRA) d S. Giraldo (COL) 63 61
[12] M. Raonic (CAN) d D. Kudla (USA) 76(4) 64
[Q] T. Smyczek (USA) d [13] J. Isner (USA) 62 26 76(5)
[16] G. Monfils (FRA) d [Q] T. Ito (JPN) 63 62
[17] R. Bautista Agut (ESP) d A. Bedene (GBR) 75 22 ret. (right wrist)
[22] J. Sock (USA) d S. Stakhovsky (UKR) 62 32 ret. (back)
[23] P. Cuevas (URU) d J. Millman (AUS) 75 64
[24] N. Kyrgios (AUS) d M. Baghdatis (CYP) 62 61
[26] G. Dimitrov (BUL) d F. Delbonis (ARG) 76(8) 46 64
[27] A. Dolgopolov (UKR) d A. Seppi (ITA) 64 64
A. Mannarino (FRA) d [29] S. Querrey (USA) 67(5) 62 64
[Q] M. Kukushkin (KAZ) d [30] T. Bellucci (BRA) 57 63 00 ret. (dehydration)

Doubles – Second Round
J. Isner (USA) / N. Monroe (USA) d R. Nadal (ESP) / F. Verdasco (ESP) w/o (Nadal – illness)

Doubles – First Round
J. Chardy (FRA) / F. Martin (FRA) d [1] J. Rojer (NED) / H. Tecau (ROU) 76(7) 76(4)
R. Klaasen (RSA) / R. Ram (USA) d [3] J. Murray (GBR) / B. Soares (BRA) 36 63 10-7
[4] B. Bryan (USA) / M. Bryan (USA) d I. Cervantes (ESP) / D. Ferrer (ESP) 63 75
[WC] O. Jasika (AUS) / J. Smith (AUS) d [7] E. Roger-Vasselin (FRA) / N. Zimonjic (SRB) 61 57 12-10
A. Qureshi (PAK) / G. Simon (FRA) d D. Nestor (CAN) / R. Stepanek (CZE) 64 75
D. Marrero (ESP) / B. Paire (FRA) d [Alt] L. Mayer (ARG) / J. Sousa (POR) 75 64
P. Petzschner (GER) / A. Peya (AUT) d [Alt] T. Bellucci (BRA) / A. Sa (BRA) 64 62
[PR] M. Cilic (CRO) / M. Draganja (CRO) d H. Kontinen (FIN) / J. Peers (AUS) 46 63 12-10

ORDER OF PLAY – SUNDAY, MARCH 27, 2016
STADIUM start 11:00 am
ATP – [31] S. Johnson (USA) vs [7] T. Berdych (CZE)

Not Before 1:00 pm
WTA – [13] V. Azarenka (BLR) vs [Q] M. Linette (POL)
WTA – [22] M. Keys (USA) vs [9] R. Vinci (ITA)
ATP – [1] N. Djokovic (SRB) vs [33] J. Sousa (POR)

Not Before 7:30 pm
WTA – [WC] N. Gibbs (USA) vs [4] G. Muguruza (ESP)

Not Before 9:00 pm
ATP – L. Pouille (FRA) vs [8] D. Ferrer (ESP)

GRANDSTAND start 10:50 am
WTA – [Q] K. Bertens (NED) vs [2] A. Kerber (GER)
ATP – [LL] H. Zeballos (ARG) vs F. Verdasco (ESP)
ATP – [10] R. Gasquet (FRA) vs [20] B. Paire (FRA)
ATP – [11] M. Cilic (CRO) vs [18] G. Simon (FRA)

Not Before 5:00 pm
ATP – J. Chardy (FRA) / F. Martin (FRA) vs F. Lopez (ESP) / M. Lopez (ESP)

COURT 1 start 10:55 am
ATP – [Q] Y. Nishioka (JPN) vs [14] D. Thiem (AUT)
ATP – [19] V. Troicki (SRB) vs [15] D. Goffin (BEL)
WTA – C. Vandeweghe (USA) vs [32] M. Niculescu (ROU)
WTA – [24] J. Konta (GBR) vs [Q] E. Vesnina (RUS)

COURT 2 start 11:00 am
WTA – [WC] N. Osaka (JPN) vs T. Babos (HUN)
ATP – T. Huey (PHI) / M. Mirnyi (BLR) vs [2] I. Dodig (CRO) / M. Melo (BRA)
WTA – [Q] Kr. Pliskova (CZE) vs I. Begu (ROU)
ATP – P. Cuevas (URU) / M. Granollers (ESP) vs P. Petzschner (GER) / A. Peya (AUT)

COURT 7 start 11:00 am
WTA – V. King (USA) / A. Kudryavtseva (RUS) vs [PR] A. Rodionova (AUS) / G. Voskoboeva (KAZ)
WTA – [8] Y. Xu (CHN) / S. Zheng (CHN) vs A. Medina Garrigues (ESP) / A. Parra Santonja (ESP)
WTA – [PR] S. Hsieh (TPE) / S. Peng (CHN) vs E. Makarova (RUS) / B. Strycova (CZE)
WTA – [5] A. Hlavackova (CZE) / L. Hradecka (CZE) vs S. Errani (ITA) / C. Suárez Navarro (ESP)
WTA – A. Rosolska (POL) / L. Siegemund (GER) vs K. Bondarenko (UKR) / O. Savchuk (UKR)

 

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Serena Williams Begins Quest for Ninth Miami Title with Three-Set Win Over Christina McHale

(March 24, 2016) Serena Williams began her quest for a ninth Miami Open title on Thursday, getting past countrywoman Christina McHale 6-3, 5-7, 6-2 in their first meeting. For No. 1 Williams her second round win was her 19th straight victory in Key Biscayne. The last time Williams lost in Miami was in the last eight in 2012.

Williams hit 33 winners to 44 unforced errors in the two-hour nine-minute match. She was 5 for 17 in break point conversions.

Williams had a match point in the second set, was up and lost five straight games.

“She just started playing better and playing tennis that she’s never played before,” Williams said.
I just made a few mistakes and then just had to pull myself back together.”

“She’s an unbelievably sweet girl,” Williams said of McHale. “I’ve had the opportunity to play with her on Fed Cup, and we always have such a good time.

“I think she did a really good job. She can, should, and will be very proud of herself in this match. I think it can also show her how good she is and what a good player she is. She’s a really good player.”

Also advancing on the women’s side of the draw were No. 3 seed Agnieszka Radwanska and No. 7 Petra Kvitova.

Heather Watson

Heather Watson

Wildcard Heather Watson surprised 20th seed Sloane Stephens 6-3, 6-0.

MIAMI OPEN PRESENTED BY ITAU – MIAMI, UNITED STATES
$6,844,139 (WTA)
21 MARCH – 3 APRIL, 2016

RESULTS – MARCH 24, 2016
Women’s Singles – Second Round
[1] S. Williams (USA) d C. McHale (USA) 63 57 62
[3] A. Radwanska (POL) d A. Cornet (FRA) 60 61
[5] S. Halep (ROU) d D. Kasatkina (RUS) 63 75
[8] P. Kvitova (CZE) d I. Falconi (USA) 61 64
Y. Wickmayer (BEL) d [11] L. Safarova (CZE) 62 63
[12] E. Svitolina (UKR) d S. Zhang (CHN) 63 60
[15] S. Kuznetsova (RUS) d C. Witthoeft (GER) 63 46 64
[16] A. Ivanovic (SRB) d T. Pereira (BRA) 63 60
[19] T. Bacsinszky (SUI) d M. Gasparyan (RUS) 63 61
[WC] H. Watson (GBR) d [20] S. Stephens (USA) 63 60
C. Garcia (FRA) d [21] A. Petkovic (GER) 76(5) 36 76(2)
[23] C. Wozniacki (DEN) d V. King (USA) 75 62
J. Goerges (GER) d [26] S. Stosur (AUS) 36 61 64
M. Brengle (USA) d [28] A. Schmiedlova (SVK) 75 64
[30] E. Makarova (RUS) d L. Tsurenko (UKR) 36 64 63
Z. Diyas (KAZ) d [31] D. Gavrilova (AUS) 75 63

Women’s
Doubles – First Round

[1] M. Hingis (SUI) / S. Mirza (IND) d L. Arruabarrena (ESP) / I. Olaru (ROU) 60 64
[4] T. Babos (HUN) / Y. Shvedova (KAZ) d K. Jans-Ignacik (POL) / D. Jurak (CRO) 63 57 10-5
[5] A. Hlavackova (CZE) / L. Hradecka (CZE) d N. Melichar (USA) / A. Spears (USA) 64 61
A. Medina Garrigues (ESP) / A. Parra Santonja (ESP) d [PR] K. Marosi (HUN) / K. Siniakova (CZE) 62 64
[PR] S. Hsieh (TPE) / S. Peng (CHN) d A. Groenefeld (GER) / C. Vandeweghe (USA) 64 62


Men’s Singles – First Round

D. Dzumhur (BIH) d L. Mayer (ARG) 46 63 64
[Q] M. Kukushkin (KAZ) d [PR] B. Baker (USA) 64 62
S. Stakhovsky (UKR) d [WC] N. Jarry (CHI) 76(7) 75
D. Kudla (USA) d H. Chung (KOR) 63 36 61
[Q] T. Smyczek (USA) d [Q] T. Paul (USA) 64 57 75
M. Baghdatis (CYP) d [Q] B. Becker (GER) 63 64
A. Mannarino (FRA) d I. Marchenko (UKR) 26 62 63
An. Kuznetsov (RUS) d [LL] R. Dutra Silva (BRA) 62 63
[Q] P. Herbert (FRA) d L. Rosol (CZE) 75 64
A. Seppi (ITA) d D. Young (USA) 63 61
A. Bedene (GBR) d [WC] R. Carballes Baena (ESP) 46 62 63
S. Giraldo (COL) d P. Mathieu (FRA) 62 26 63
[Q] T. Ito (JPN) d N. Mahut (FRA) 76(3) 62
J. Millman (AUS) d P. Carreno Busta (ESP) 63 62
F. Delbonis (ARG) d [WC] E. Ymer (SWE) 61 46 63
D. Istomin (UZB) d B. Coric (CRO) 46 75 75

Doubles – First Round
P. Cuevas (URU) / M. Granollers (ESP) d [6] R. Bopanna (IND) / F. Mergea (ROU) 26 64 10-4
J. Isner (USA) / N. Monroe (USA) d [8] V. Pospisil (CAN) / J. Sock (USA) 76(3) 63
F. Lopez (ESP) / M. Lopez (ESP) d S. Johnson (USA) / S. Querrey (USA) 36 63 10-6
R. Bautista Agut (ESP) / V. Troicki (SRB) d D. Inglot (GBR) / R. Lindstedt (SWE) 63 75
R. Nadal (ESP) / F. Verdasco (ESP) d S. Bolelli (ITA) / A. Seppi (ITA) 63 64

ORDER OF PLAY – FRIDAY, MARCH 25, 2016
STADIUM start 11:00 am
WTA – B. Strycova (CZE) vs [2] A. Kerber (GER)

Not Before 1:00 pm
ATP – [Q] T. Fritz (USA) vs [8] D. Ferrer (ESP)
ATP – [3] R. Federer (SUI) vs [PR] J. Del Potro (ARG)

Not Before 5:00 pm
WTA – [Q] E. Vesnina (RUS) vs [10] V. Williams (USA)

8:00 pm
ATP – [1] N. Djokovic (SRB) vs K. Edmund (GBR)

Not Before 9:30 pm
WTA – [13] V. Azarenka (BLR) vs M. Puig (PUR)

GRANDSTAND start 11:00 am
ATP – R. Ram (USA) vs [7] T. Berdych (CZE)
WTA – D. Cibulkova (SVK) vs [4] G. Muguruza (ESP)
ATP – F. Verdasco (ESP) vs [28] J. Chardy (FRA)
ATP – [31] S. Johnson (USA) vs A. Zverev (GER)

Not Before 5:00 pm
ATP – [10] R. Gasquet (FRA) vs A. Ramos-Vinolas (ESP)

COURT 1 start 11:00 am
ATP – S. Groth (AUS) vs [14] D. Thiem (AUT)

Not Before 12:30 pm
ATP – [21] F. Lopez (ESP) vs [Q] Y. Nishioka (JPN)
WTA – [6] C. Suárez Navarro (ESP) vs C. Vandeweghe (USA)
ATP – V. Pospisil (CAN) vs [33] J. Sousa (POR)
WTA – [24] J. Konta (GBR) vs D. Kovinic (MNE)

COURT 2 start 11:00 am
ATP – [11] M. Cilic (CRO) vs D. Lajovic (SRB)
WTA – [27] K. Mladenovic (FRA) vs [WC] N. Gibbs (USA)
ATP – [Q] M. Granollers (ESP) vs [15] D. Goffin (BEL)
WTA – [22] M. Keys (USA) vs K. Flipkens (BEL)
ATP – L. Kubot (POL) / M. Matkowski (POL) vs [2] I. Dodig (CRO) / M. Melo (BRA)

COURT 7 start 11:00 am
WTA – T. Babos (HUN) vs [17] Ka. Pliskova (CZE)
ATP – J. Monaco (ARG) vs [18] G. Simon (FRA)
ATP – M. Youzhny (RUS) vs [20] B. Paire (FRA)
WTA – [7] B. Bencic (SUI) vs [Q] Kr. Pliskova (CZE)

COURT 8 start 11:00 am
ATP – [32] G. Garcia-Lopez (ESP) vs L. Pouille (FRA)
WTA – [14] S. Errani (ITA) vs [WC] N. Osaka (JPN)
WTA – I. Begu (ROU) vs [29] S. Lisicki (GER)
ATP – [19] V. Troicki (SRB) vs I. Cervantes (ESP)

COURT 9 start 11:00 am
WTA – [25] A. Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) vs [Q] K. Bertens (NED)
WTA – [Q] M. Linette (POL) vs [18] J. Jankovic (SRB)
WTA – S. Peng (CHN) vs [32] M. Niculescu (ROU)
WTA – L. Hradecka (CZE) vs [9] R. Vinci (ITA)

COURT 10 start 11:00 am
ATP – [WC] E. Butorac (USA) / S. Lipsky (USA) vs T. Huey (PHI) / M. Mirnyi (BLR)
WTA – G. Dabrowski (CAN) / L. Kichenok (UKR) vs A. Rosolska (POL) / L. Siegemund (GER)

Not Before 2:00 pm
ATP-After Suitable Rest – O. Marach (AUT) / D. Thiem (AUT) vs [5] P. Herbert (FRA) / N. Mahut (FRA)
WTA – K. Bertens (NED) / J. Larsson (SWE) vs C. Dellacqua (AUS) / S. Stosur (AUS)

COURT 5 start 11:00 am
WTA – [PR] A. Rodionova (AUS) / G. Voskoboeva (KAZ) vs [7] A. Klepac (SLO) / K. Srebotnik (SLO)

Not Before 2:00 pm
WTA-After Suitable Rest – [8] Y. Xu (CHN) / S. Zheng (CHN) vs [WC] S. Kuznetsova (RUS) / A. Pavlyuchenkova (RUS)
WTA – V. King (USA) / A. Kudryavtseva (RUS) vs J. Goerges (GER) / K. Pliskova (CZE)

 

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