2015/03/06

Davis Cup in Glasgow: Communication Key for Courier

(March 5, 2015) GLASGOW, SCOTLAND – While it was a jolly British team, joking amongst themselves who took to the round of interviews first, it was an altogether more thoughtful Unites States team that offered their thoughts after the Davis Cup first round draw was made.

 

Donald Young will be the first to face the home crowds in Andy Murray’s old stomping grounds, and having scored a famous victory over Murray during his 2011 post-Australian Open final walkabout, Young has hardly troubled the Brit since, but after being pulled in last year in San Diego to replace an injured John Isner, this time he was picked in his own right. His results over the past month have lent some much-needed consistency to his play, and this in turn has given him some confidence.

 

Leading the news conference questions, Young said: “I feel more comfortable and confident than last year. Last year was my first time competing in Davis Cup. I had a ton of nerves starting the match off. It will be a tough match either way because Andy is a great player, but I feel like I am playing well and I look forward to seeing what happens.”

 

With Isner having made some measure of James Ward, as they play the second rubber, he acknowledged that the Brits have chosen a surface and speed to perhaps dull his chances as well as making the transition for Murray a little easier.

 

He said: “It may neutralise my serve a little bit. But I’m happy with the court. The British team chose it, we have no control.”

 

Of course he is the favourite to steam through and put the pressure back on the Brits. While Murray played down his chances of partnering with his elder brother Jamie, Bob and Mike Bryan know that a match up between them and the Murrays is what the Saturday crowd will really want. But while Jamie Murray’s consistent play earned him a spot back in the Davis Cup side over stalwart Colin Fleming, it is Dominic Inglot who has the upper hand so far over the Bryans.

 

Bob said: “Dom Inglot has the hot hand, he’s played us well in the last couple of matches so we’re prepared for him.” Mike agreed, adding, “He’s aggressive, he’s a big guy – not really lob-able. He’s all over the net. He plays with a lot of power, which is the kind of the new age of doubles, the power game. So you’ve got to find a way to break him, which is tough. You know if I was the coach, it would tough to leave a guy who has a hot hand off the team so he’s got a tough decision.”

 

Above all though Courier knows that his communication with the team will be key – something he feels he has learned to improve in every tie.

Courier said: “I think, from my experience with Donald on the bench in San Diego now, we have some communication that we can rely on because we’ve been through a match and the fire together. It’s important he and I are comfortable together because these guys need to feel comfortable because they’re used to playing their whole lives without someone sitting next to them talking to them during the match.

“It’s important that I stay out of their or get in their way when I need to interject and do it at the right times, and that’s a judgment call based on experience.

“Now Donald and I have some, John, Bob and Mike and I have a lot of experience in that realm so far, so I’m feeling more comfortable, I hope they are.”

The time for talking though is now over, and come 1pm in UK time Young will walk out to a ferociously passionate crowd and a home hero in every sense of the word.

Ros Satar is a British sports journalist and a writer at Livetennis.com.

Order of Play for the tie:

Friday, March 6 – 1:00 p.m.   

Singles A: Donald Young (USA) vs. Andy Murray (GBR)

Singles B: John Isner (USA) vs. James Ward (GBR)

Saturday, March 7 – 1:00 p.m.                      

Doubles: Bob and Mike Bryan (USA) vs. Jamie Murray/Dominic Inglot (GBR)

Sunday, March 8 – 1:00 p.m.                         

Singles C: John Isner (USA) vs. Andy Murray (GBR)

Singles D: Donald Young (USA) vs. James Ward (GBR)

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Tennis Channel to Broadcast Great Britain – US Davis Cup Tie

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(March 5, 2015) -Tennis Channel will provide exclusive live coverage of the U.S. Davis Cup team’s first-round competition against Britain in Glasgow, Scotland, this weekend, with the first match underway Friday, March 6, at 8 a.m. ET. The United States and Britain, whose rivalry began Davis Cup in 1900 – when the tournament field consisted of just the two of them – find themselves in a rematch of last year’s first round, when the British team defeated the Americans 3-1 in San Diego. Highlighting the matchup, top-ranked American John Isner will face former Wimbledon champion and Olympic gold medalist Andy Murray. Although Murray holds a 3-0 record against Isner, the pair have never faced each other in Davis Cup play. Rounding out the United States team is Donald Young and World No. 1 doubles brothers Bob and Mike Bryan.

 

The meeting will consist of two singles matches on Friday, followed by the doubles match Saturday, March 7, at 8 a.m. ET. Tennis Channel’s coverage concludes with the remaining singles play Sunday, March 8, at 9 a.m. ET. Each match is worth one point, with three victories enough to secure a trip to the July quarterfinals to face either France or Germany.

 

Tennis Channel will also offer live coverage of the France-Germany competition in Frankfurt, Germany on Tennis Channel’s digital subscription service, Tennis Channel Plus, Friday-Sunday. Stars set to play include France’s Gilles Simon, Gael Monfils and Richard Gasquet; and Germany’s Philipp Kohlschreiber.Tennis Channel will also offer select live coverage of Belgium-Switzerland play in Liege, Belgium, Friday, March 6, beginning at 8 a.m. ET.

 

Emmy Award-winning announcer Brett Haber (@BrettHaber) will handle play-by-play responsibilities during Tennis Channel’s United States-Britain Davis Cup coverage this weekend, with former U.S. Davis Cup player Justin Gimelstob (@justingimelstob) in the analyst’s role. Former tennis player Leif Shiras (@LShirock) and renowned tennis coach Paul Annacone (@paul_annacone) will call action for the France-Germany tie airing on Tennis Channel Plus. Following all Davis Cup action this weekend, all Tennis Channel’s on-air talent members will discuss the day’s action.

 

Tennis Channel’s Live Davis Cup coverage is as follows (all time ET):

Friday, March 6:

8 a.m. – Singles #1 United States v. Britain / Belgium v. Switzerland

11 a.m. – Singles #2 United States v. Britain / Belgium v. Switzerland

 

Saturday, March 7:

8 a.m. – Doubles United States v. Britain / Belgium v. Switzerland

 

Sunday, March 8:

8:30 a.m. – Singles #1 Belgium v. Switzerland

9 a.m. – Singles #1 United States v. Britain

11:30 a.m. – Singles #2 Belgium v. Switzerland

12 p.m. – Singles #2 United States v. Britain

 

The United States holds an 11-8 advantage over Britain. The two countries’ rivalry dates back to 1900, when a group of Americans led by Harvard tennis player Dwight Davis, who won the intercollegiate singles championship as a student in 1899, challenged Britain in what became the first Davis Cup competition. The most recent meeting between the two nations was during the same stage of Davis Cup play last year, when Britain beat the United States in San Diego. The American squad is bidding to win its first Davis Cup crown since 2007 and leads all nations with 23 Davis Cup titles.

 

The U.S. Davis Cup team is captained by Jim Courier, who as a player was on the 1999 team that beat Britain. Isner, the tallest player in U.S. Davis Cup history, at 6-foot-10, won his ninth career singles title at last year’s Emirates Airline US Open Series in Atlanta and reached the third round at the Australian Open this year. Young, who made his debut appearance for the U.S. Davis Cup team during the first round last year, enters this weekend’s competition after advancing to his second ATP singles final in Delray Beach, Fla. Twin brothers Bob and Mike Bryan, the world’s top-ranked doubles team, hold the all-time Open era record with 16 Grand Slam men’s doubles titles and captured an Olympic gold medal in doubles at the London games in 2012.

 

After defeating the United States in the first round last year, Britain lost to Italy in the quarterfinals last April. This year’s team is captained by Leon Smith and features Murray, James Ward, Jamie Murray and Dominic Inglot. Britain has clinched the Davis Cup trophy on nine occasions.

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Tennis Channel to Air Live Coverage of US versus Argentina Fed Cup Tie

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LOS ANGELES, Feb.5, 2015 -Tennis Channel will provide exclusive live coverage of the U.S. Fed Cup team’s first-round competition against Argentina in Buenos Aires this weekend, beginning at 9 a.m. ET Saturday, Feb. 7, and Sunday, Feb. 8. The United States must defeat Argentina to keep its hopes alive to qualify for the 2016 Fed Cup tournament. World No. 1 and reigning Australian Open champion Serena Williams will join her sister Venus, Coco Vandeweghe and Taylor Townsend as they fight for a spot in next year’s competition after losing matches to Italy and France last year.

 

In addition to televising United States-Argentina this weekend, Tennis Channel will cover the 2015 Fed Cup first-round competition between Poland and Russia live, in Krakow, Poland, beginning at 6 a.m. ET Saturday and SundayAustralian Open finalist and World No. 2 Maria Sharapova will lead the charge against Poland and World No. 6 Agnieszka Radwanska.

Tennis Channel’s live Fed Cup coverage is as follows (all time ET):

Saturday, Feb. 7:

6a.m. -Singles #1 Poland v. Russia

8a.m. -Singles #2 Poland v. Russia

9a.m. -Singles #1 USA v. Argentina

11a.m. -Singles #2 USA v. Argentina

 

Sunday, Feb. 8:

6a.m. -Singles #3 Poland v. Russia

8a.m. -Singles #4 Poland v. Russia

9a.m. -Singles #3 USA v. Argentina

11a.m. -Singles #4 USA v. Argentina

1p.m. - Doubles USA v. Argentina

 

The United States and Argentina have faced each other four times in Fed Cup play, with the United States winning all but one of those meetings. The most recent competition was during the 2009 Fed Cup first round, when the U.S. team beat Argentina 3-2 in Surprise, Ariz. Argentina captured its sole victory against the United States in 1993 in the quarterfinalThe American squad must defeat Argentina and then win another head-to-head Fed Cup competition in April in order to qualify for the 2016 tournament. This weekend’s match marks the second time in its history that the American squad will be playing outside of the Fed Cup’s top division. The United States leads all nations with 17 Fed Cup championships, the most recent in 2000.

 

Retired tennis star Mary Joe Fernandez, a member of the winning U.S. Fed Cup team in 1996, will lead the United States team for her seventh year as captain. Serena Williams captured her 19th Grand Slam singles title at this year’s Australian Open after defeating Sharapova in the final. Williams is now tied for third place on the all-time singles list, breaking her former tie with fellow Americans Martina Navratilova and Chris Evert. She also holds four Olympic gold medals, including one in singles and three in doubles with her sister Venus.  Vandeweghe recently advanced to the quarterfinals in Auckland, New Zealand, and enters this weekend’s match after a third-round appearance at the Australian Open. Townsend, Fed Cup newcomer and World No. 1 ranked junior in 2012, climbed the rankings last year after an impressive third-round performance at the French Open and won two $50,000 USTA Pro Circuit events.

 

If Argentina wins this weekend it will advance to the Fed Cup playoff in April and compete for a chance to qualify for the 2016 Fed Cup tournament. Argentina’s team is captained by Maria- Jose Gaidano and features Paula Ormaechea, Maria Irigoyen, Nadia Podoroska and Tatiana Bua.

 

In addition to daylong Fed Cup coverage this weekend, Tennis Channel will also periodically look in at the men’s tournaments in Montpellier, France; Zagreb, Croatia and Quito, Ecuador, this weekend, as part of its world-whip around telecast.

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2015 Australian Open TV Schedules for ESPN and Tennis Channel

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Australian Open TV Schedule (All times ET)

Sunday, Jan. 18, 6 p.m.-7 p.m.
Pre-Tournament Tennis Channel

Sunday, Jan. 18, 7 p.m.–7 a.m.
Early round play, ESPN2

Monday, Jan. 19, 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
First Round, Tennis Channel

Monday, Jan. 19, 9 p.m.–7 a.m.
Early round play, ESPN2

Tuesday, Jan. 20, 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Second Round, Tennis Channel

Tuesday, Jan. 20, 9 p.m.–7 a.m.
Early round play, ESPN2

Wednesday, Jan. 21, 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Second Round, Tennis Channel

Wednesday, Jan. 21, 9 p.m.–7 a.m.
Early round play, ESPN2

Thursday, Jan. 22, 6 p.m.-11 p.m.
Third Round, Tennis Channel

Thursday, Jan. 22, 11 p.m.–7 a.m.
Early round play, ESPN2

Friday, Jan. 23, 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Third Round, Tennis Channel

Friday, Jan. 23, 9 p.m.–7 a.m.
Early round play, ESPN2

Saturday, Jan. 24, 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Round of 16, Tennis Channel

Saturday, Jan. 24, 9 p.m.–7 a.m.
Round of 16, ESPN2

Sunday, Jan. 25, 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Round of 16, Tennis Channel

Sunday, Jan. 25, 9 p.m.–2 a.m., 3 a.m.-6:30 a.m.,
Round of 16, ESPN2

Monday, Jan. 26, 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Men’s and Women’s Quarterfinals, Tennis Channel

Monday, Jan. 26, 9 p.m.–2 a.m., 3 a.m.-6 a.m.
Quarterfinals, ESPN2

Tuesday, Jan. 27, 6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Men’s and Women’s Quarterfinals, Tennis Channel

Tuesday, Jan. 27, 9 p.m.–2 a.m., 3:30 a.m.-6 a.m.
Quarterfinals, ESPN2

Wednesday, Jan. 28, 6 p.m.-9:30 p.m. TBA
Tennis Channel

Wednesday, Jan. 28, 9:30 p.m.–2 a.m., 3:30 a.m.-6 a.m.
Semifinals, ESPN2

Thursday, Jan. 29, 10 p.m.-3:30 a.m.
Mixed Doubles Semifinal/Women’s Doubles Final, Tennis Channel

Thursday, Jan. 29, 3:30 a.m.-6 a.m.
Semifinals, ESPN2

Friday, Jan. 30, 3:30 a.m.-6 a.m.
Semifinals, ESPN2

Saturday, Jan. 31, 3 a.m.-5:30 a.m.
Women’s Final, ESPN2

Saturday, Jan. 31, 5:30 a.m.-8 a.m.
Men’s Doubles Final, Tennis Channel

Sunday, Feb. 1, 3 a.m.-6 a.m.
Men’s Final, ESPN2

Sunday, Feb. 1, 12 a.m.-2 a.m.
Mixed Doubles Final, TennisChannel

ESPN

ESPN2 will present daily, marathon, overnight telecasts from Melbourne (primarily starting at 9 p.m.) through the women’s semifinals, when the action switches to ESPN.

Approximately 40 additional hours will be aired on ESPN2 during the afternoon with action from the overnight telecasts.

ESPN3 will offer nearly 800 hours from up to 13 courts, both the most ever for an ESPN tennis event, adding nearly more than 300 hours and from six additional courts than in 2013.  ESPN3’s coverage starts at 7 p.m. over the first 11 days of the tournament with the first ball each day of all TV court matches.  Additionally, ESPN3 will offer live the men’s, women’s and mixed doubles championships and the finals of the boys and girls divisions.

All the action on ESPN and ESPN2 is also available through WatchESPN online at WatchESPN.com, on smartphones and tablets via the award-winning WatchESPN app, and streamed on televisions through Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick, Apple TV, Chromecast, Roku, Xbox 360 and Xbox One to more than 75 million households nationwide via an affiliated video or internet provider.

Tennis Channel

Since its coverage of last year’s Australian Open, Tennis Channel has introduced a new digital subscription service – Tennis Channel Plus – that allows fans to access even more content than the network is capable of fitting on air. Available on the free Tennis Channel Everywhere app to all Apple and Android users, regardless of whether or not they subscribe to Tennis Channel, the service will supplement the network’s televised Australian Open coverage this year with daily highlights, interviews and other segments from Australian Open Today. Tennis Channel Plus also provides access to archived matches from other major events like Wimbledon and the French Open, as well as thousands of hours of on-demand programming.

 

Beyond Tennis Channel Plus, most viewers who get Tennis Channel at home are able to take the Australian Open with them live on their mobile devices through the Tennis Channel Everywhere app at no additional cost. Simple subscription authentication with select distribution partners enables the app’s TV Everywhere function, and lets fans tune into the network’s round-the-clock coverage from Melbourne throughout the workday back in the United States.

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“Miracle Coffee” Lifts Serena Williams at Hopman Cup

(January 5, 2015) Sluggish and apparently jetlagged, Serena Williams needed a coffee break after dropping the first set 6-0 to Flavia Pennetta at Hopman Cup on Monday.

“I am a coffee drinker. I didn’t have mine this morning and I was just feeling it, so I just had to get some coffee into me,” said the world No. 1.

“I just asked them to get me a shot of espresso. I asked them if it was legal, because I’ve never done it before.

“I needed to wake up – it’s just the jetlag. It gets you all the time.”

The coffee did the trick. Williams rebounded and went on to win the match 0-6, 6-3, 6-0.

“It’s miracle coffee,” Williams said jokingly after the match.

“I wanted coffee with my bagel and whatever coffee it was, it was really good.”

Team USA won the face-off against Italy 3-0 with John Isner beating Fabio Fognini 5-7, 7-5, 7-6 (4) in men’s singles and Williams and Isner finished with a win in mixed doubles.

Next up for Team USA will be Team Canada.

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Safarova Leads Czechs to Victory in Hopman Cup Opener

Safarova

(January 4, 2015) Team Czech Republic defeated Canada 2-1 on day one of Hopman Cup on Sunday in Perth. Lucie Safarova lead the charge for the Czechs with a 6-0, 6-4 win over No. 7 in the world Eugenie Bouchard and later combined with Adam Pavlasek to win the mixed doubles.

“It’s the best way I could imagine and I started really strong and was pressuring her from the first point,” the 16th ranked Safarova told media.

Serena Williams and John Isner representing team USA will play their first match against Italy on Monday. Andy Murray, fresh off his Abu Dhabi exhibition tournament win, will lead Great Britain against France.

“If anything it’s going to help me for Melbourne,” Williams said of the 106 degree Fahrenheit temperature in the forecast for her Monday matches. “Perth is one of the hottest places I’ve ever played, so it will be really good for the preparation in Melbourne, which is always super-hot.”

 

Hopman Cup

Day 1 – Final results

Czech Republic d Canada 2-1

Lucie Safarova (CZE) d Eugenie Bouchard (CAN) 6-0 6-4

Vasek Pospisil (CAN) d Adam Pavlasek (CZE) 7-6(5) 6-2

Lucie Safarova / Adam Pavlasek (CZE) d Eugenie Bouchard / Vasek Pospisil (CAN) 6-4 6-2

 

Poland d Australia 3-0

Agnieszka Radwanska (POL) d Casey Dellacqua (AUS) 6-2 6-3

Jerzy Janowicz (POL) d Matt Ebden (AUS) 3-6 7-5 6-0

Agnieszka Radwanska / Jerzy Janowicz (POL) d Casey Dellacqua / Ben Mitchell (AUS) 8-6

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Tennis Channel Begins 2015 Hopman Cup Coverage January 4

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Serena Williams and John Isner to Represent United States in Mixed-Doubles Tournament

(December 30, 2014) LOS ANGELES, – Tennis Channel will bring viewers exclusive tournament coverage from the 2015 Hyundai Hopman Cup beginning Sunday, Jan. 4, at 8 p.m. ET. Serena Williams, World No. 1, will partner with top-ranked American man John Isner in the annual mixed-doubles tournament. The network’s telecast will include action from around the world as well as U.S. competitions. All Hopman Cup matches, which feature teams consisting of one man and one woman, will take place at the Perth Arena in Australia, Jan. 4-Jan. 10.

 

The United States leads all nations in Hopman Cup titles, claiming its sixth crown in 2011; when Isner played for the team. This year he won titles at Auckland and Atlanta, and helped the U.S. Davis Cup team beat Slovakia 5-0 in September. Williams captured her 18th Grand Slam singles title at this year’s US Open and has won four Olympic gold medals, including one in singles and three in doubles with her sister Venus. She also holds 13 Grand Slam doubles titles and two mixed doubles titles. Williams has contributed to two American Hopman Cup championships during her career.

 

Tennis Channel’s 2015 Hopman Cup coverage begins with Canada’s Eugenie Bouchard and Vasek Pospisil, who will face the Czech Republic’s Lucie Safarova and Adam Pavlasek. Bouchard, World No. 7, made Canadian tennis history this year at Wimbledon when she defeated World No. 3 Simona Halep to become the nation’s first women’s singles finalist. In 2014, the Czech Republic’s Safarova advanced to her first Grand Slam semifinal at Wimbledon before falling to fellow Czech and Fed Cup teammate Petra Kvitova.

 

Coverage from Perth, Australia (all times ET):

Sunday, Jan. 4:

8 p.m. – Canada v. Czech Republic

 

Monday, Jan. 5:

8 p.m. – Italy v. USA

 

Tuesday, Jan. 6:

8 p.m. – Canada v. USA

 

Sunday, Jan. 11:

10 a.m. – Championship

 

The Americans will take on Italy’s Flavia Pennetta and Fabio Fognini. Pennetta, World No. 12, reached to the quarterfinals at the Australian Open and US Open in 2014 and won her 10th WTA title at Indian Wells. In doubles, Pennetta and partner Martina Hingis made it to the finals at the US Open before falling to Russia’s Ekaterina Makarova and Elena Vesnina. Italy’s top-ranked male player, Fognini reached a career-high ranking this year of World No. 13, and won his third ATP title at Vina del Mar, while also advancing to the finals at Buenos Aires and Munich.

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Tennis Channel to Air Federer vs Wawrinka Charity Exhibition – “The Match for Africa 2,” on December 21

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(December 18, 2014) LOS ANGELES - Tennis Channel has exclusive live coverage of 17-time Grand Slam winner Roger Federer as he faces off against Australian Open champion Stan Wawrinka on Dec. 21 at 2:30 p.m. ET in a battle benefiting Federer’s charity. The Match for Africa 2 is an exhibition between the two friends and Swiss compatriots to benefit The Roger Federer Foundation.

The Roger Federer Foundation supports children living in poverty, helping them realize their potential through education. With seven countries running programs, 136,000 children currently benefit from the foundation. It hopes to reach 1 million by 2018.

 

The match will be held at Zurich’s Hallenstadion, Switzerland’s largest multifunctional hall. For more information about additional Tennis Channel programming events in December visit www.tennischannel.com/schedule.

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Breadstick Day in Notes and Quotes from Day 2 of the ATP World Tour Finals

(November 10, 2014) LONDON – Notes and quotes from the Day 2 news conferences of the ATP World Tour Finals. Monday’s matches included a pair of 6-1, 6-1 victories for Group A players Stan Wawrinka and Novak Djokovic who demolished opponents Tomas Berdych and year-end rookie Marin Cilic respectively.

Stan Wawrinka

“I didn’t expect to win that easy in the score, for sure. But I was ready to play well. I did a great week of preparation. I did work really, really hard since few weeks with Magnus. Even if the result wasn’t there in Basel and Paris, I was feeling the ball really well at the practice court.”

 

“I’m happy with my performance. I’m happy the way I was playing. Serving really well. Returning almost everything. It seems it’s not usual. And, yeah, feeling good on the court.”

 

Q. Do you know the score of the first set was the same as the Federer/Raonic match yesterday?
STAN WAWRINKA: Good start for the Swiss.

Q. Good for the Davis Cup.
STAN WAWRINKA: Exactly. I try to show him that I’m going to be ready for the Final.
Q. You have the best record on tour against the top 10 this year, you’re 7 1. Against everyone else, you win two thirds of the time. You’re winning more against the top 10. Why is that?
STAN WAWRINKA: I had, what, six win against top 10 in the first three months of the year, then I never played them again because I lose early in the tournament, so it was a tough six months after (smiling).

 

 

Tomas Berdych

 

“Unfortunately it was my worst match of the whole season, and I kept it for the start here in the World Tour Finals. So that’s not the best one at the start.

“But, yeah, there are days like that. Now it’s over of that. Really, I mean, it’s just matter of, you know, looking forward, trying to find a way for next few days. Just try to leave this somewhere very far and try to come up with some better tennis.”

 

My game is about hitting the ball nice, clean, then you can create something. But that’s the beginning what I didn’t have today at all. I hit so many frames. You know, just was not there. It’s the thing that I have to sit with my team and find out and make the right things for the future days.

 

How did you find the court surface today? How does it compare to the previous four years you qualified?

TOMAS BERDYCH: Well, honestly, I don’t know if I’m in the right mood, the right feeling just to judge the court. Because today I didn’t really feel anything right.

 

 

Novak Djokovic

“It was a great performance. I was hoping I could play this way. I was preparing myself for this match. I knew already one week ago that I’m going to play Marin at 8 p.m. on Monday.

“My team did a good scouting. We thought about, you know, what’s the game plan. I stepped in and executed really well.”

 

His debut in the World Tour Finals has gotten best out of him in terms of his nerves. You could see that he didn’t feel so comfortable. Tried to use my experience playing on this stage, the stadium, which is pretty different from any other.

 

“How do I feel returning indoors comparing to outdoors. It is different and it’s better for the returner. It’s better for the server, but I feel it’s better for the returner because the ball more or less bounces the same every time, so you can anticipate better.”

 

Which is your most memorable memory with Grigor Dimitrov this year?

” I know what it was last year. When we took off our shirts at the exhibition event in Boodles before Wimbledon. We had a lot of fun there.

“He’s a great guy. A very good player that has the potential definitely to be a Grand Slam winner one day. He’s already working his way through. Played semifinals of Wimbledon. I think that’s our most memorable, let’s say, day of this year, of this season, where we played each other over three hours match, pushed each other to the limit.

“He’s got a lot of talent. He’s good‑looking. He speaks good English. He has Maria Sharapova for a girlfriend. What more can you ask for (laughter)? And he’s Bulgarian.”

 

 

Marin Cilic

 

Well, I mean, from my own side, it’s also first time being here. Also I felt that Novak played really, really solid today. In some matches, the score just keeps running. You are sinking a lot. You are, you know, always trying to find something. But whatever you try, it’s not working.

“That’s what I felt today. I felt a little bit uncomfortable on the court, rusty. In some situations where I felt I was, you know, having a chance to get in the score. Also in the beginning of the second set where I broke back to come back to level the score, you know, played pretty sloppy service game.

“In some situations, you know, the score just goes, and it’s difficult to stop it.”

 

 

“It’s medium‑paced court. It’s difficult to get the ball past the opponent. I mean, especially Novak. I didn’t have too many winners today.

“Also he was able to, you know, dictate the rallies. He was also able to return very well.

“That was a difficult part for my game to get some advantages at the beginning of the points.

“You know, when we are at the rallies, Novak starts to dictate, he’s always in a much better position. So that was, you know, a difficult part for me to get out of.

“Considering the court, it’s, I mean, a solid court, but you have to be able to, you know, keep the ball away from the opponent. If you are hitting the ball well, it’s going to pay off.

“But today I felt that I was not hitting it clean. That’s always difficult, especially against Novak, to get away with a win when you’re not playing so good.”

 

Tennis Panorama News is covering the ATP World Tour Finals at the O2 Arena in London.  Follow on twitter for live updates on @TennisNewsTPN.

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Tennis Channel to Air Coverage of the ATP World Tour Finals

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LOS ANGELES, Nov. 4, 2014 – Tennis Channel has complete coverage of the 2014 Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in London, Nov. 9-16. The seven-day season-ending tournament will see Novak Djokovic attempt to fend off Roger Federer’s bid to reclaim the World No. 1 ranking as well as famed doubles brothers Bob and Mike Bryan chase a fourth doubles crown. The network will feature more than 120 total hours of match coverage, with over 50 live hours, of the best-eight singles players and doubles teams of the 2014 season. The first tournament telecast airs at 7 a.m. ET, Sunday, Nov. 9, with the initial matches of the day.

The Barclays ATP World Tour Finals hosts the world’s top-eight qualifying singles players and doubles teams. Separated into two groups of four, each singles player and doubles team will compete in a round-robin format, playing a minimum of three matches before the top two of each group advance to the single-elimination semifinals in the O2 Arena in London.

Tennis Channel’s coverage of the finals will begin each day at 7 a.m. ET, except Sunday, Nov. 16, the last day of the championship when play begins at 10:30 a.m. ET. The network’s typical daily schedule will consist of two match blocks of live on-air play – a morning session beginning at 7 a.m. ET and an afternoon session at 1 p.m. ET. After each session, Tennis Channel will feature match encores, which will be telecast from 11 a.m.-1:00 p.m., 5:30 p.m.-8 p.m., and 4:30 a.m.-7 a.m. most days of the week. For a complete schedule or for more information, visit www.tennischannel.com\schedule.

World No. 1 Djokovic leads the rest of the qualifiers by more than 1,300 points. However, he will have to contend with Federer, who is challenging his year-end No. 1 spot, as well as Australian Open champ Stanislas Wawrinka and US Open winner Marin Cilic. World No. 3 Rafael Nadal was forced to pull out from the tournament with appendicitis, opening up the field for additional year-end challengers. Also stepping onto the court in London will be Andy Murray, Kei Nishikori, Tomas Berdych and Milos Raonic, setting the stage for a battle of Grand Slam proportions. Spaniard David Ferrer will serve as the tournament’s first alternate

In addition to the Bryan brothers, the seven other teams that have qualified to compete in the men’s finals are: Daniel Nestor and Nenad Zimonjic; Alexander Peya and Bruno Soares; Julien Benneteau and Edouard Roger-Vasselin; Jean-Julien Rojer and Horia Tecau; Marcel Granollers and Marc Lopez; Ivan Dodig and Marcelo Melo; and Lukasz Kubot and Robert Lindstedt.

Tennis Channel’s 2014 ATP World Tour Finals Schedule: (All matches are live unless otherwise indicated.)

 

Date                                             Time (ET)                                       Event

Sunday, Nov. 9 7 a.m. -11 a.m.; 1 p.m.-5 p.m. Doubles and Singles Round-Robin Matches
Monday, Nov. 10 7 a.m. -11 a.m.; 1 p.m.-5 p.m. Doubles and Singles Round-Robin Matches
Tuesday, Nov. 11 7 a.m. -11 a.m.; 1 p.m.-5 p.m. Doubles and Singles Round-Robin Matches
Wednesday, Nov. 12 7 a.m. -11 a.m.; 1 p.m.-5 p.m. Doubles and Singles Round-Robin Matches
Thursday, Nov. 13 7 a.m. -11 a.m.; 1 p.m.-3 p.m. Doubles and Singles Round-Robin Matches
Friday, Nov. 14 7 a.m. -11 a.m.; 12:45 p.m.-2:30 p.m. Doubles and Singles Round-Robin Matches
Saturday, Nov. 15 7 a.m. -11 a.m.; 1 p.m.-5 p.m. Doubles and Singles Semifinals
Sunday, Nov. 16 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.; 8 p.m.- 12 a.m.*(Delay) Doubles and Singles Final

 

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