November 27, 2015

Great Britain Takes On Belgium in Davis Cup Final


(November 26, 2015) In 2013 Andy Murray won Wimbledon to end a 77-year drought for British men at the All England Club. The Scot hopes to help collect the Davis Cup title for Great Britain for the first time since 1936 this weekend against Belgium in Ghent this weekend. In 1936, Fred Perry won the decisive singles rubber to give Great Britain the victory over Australia 3-2.

Belgium was a losing finalist to Great Britain in 1904.

The best-of-five match series final between the two countries begins on Friday in the Flanders Expo on clay, with a pair of singles matches which pits players who have never faced each other in head-to-head competition. Top Belgium player, David Goffin ranked 14th in the world will play Kyle Edmund, ranked No. 100. The 20-year-old Edmund, who was born in South Africa, will be making his Davis Cup debut.

The second match on Friday will feature world No. 2 and British No. 1 Andy Murray against No. 108 Ruben Bemelmans. Bemelmans received the nod over No. 84 Steve Darcis to play the second rubber. Belgium’s Captain Johan van Herck has the option of changing players over the weekend.

Murray is not only seeking his first Davis Cup title, but he is trying to become only the third player to win all eight singles matches in a Davis Cup year since the World Group began in 1981.

Due to the Paris attacks and threats in Brussels, security in Ghent has been intensified.

The International Tennis Federation put out a security statement earlier in the week:

Update for those attending the Davis Cup by BNP Paribas Final at Flanders Expo


The ITF and Royal Belgian Tennis Federation (RBTF), in consultation with the relevant officials and our risk assessment and security advisers, are closely monitoring the situation in Belgium and specifically in Ghent. As of today there are no changes to the previously published start times for the Davis Cup by BNP Paribas Final between Belgium and Great Britain.


We are taking every necessary step to ensure the safety of the teams, the spectators, the media and all working staff.


As you would expect, a number of specific, additional security measures have been put in place for this weekend’s tie.


In particular please note:


  • This is a sold out event. There will not be any tickets on sale at the venue and anyone without a ticket will not be allowed access to the venue area.


  • Additional security measures will be in place at all entrances to the venue and will apply to all ticket holders, staff members and visitors.


  • Entry into the event will take longer than usual. Please keep this in mind when planning your arrival to the Flanders Expo. The gates will open two hours in advance of each day’s start time.


  • Bags and backpacks will not be permitted in the Flanders Expo. Ticket holders will be asked to check any bags into available off-site storage facilities.


  • No food or drink will be allowed into the arena. A full selection of refreshments will be available in venue.


  • For those travelling into Belgium for the tie we advise that you liaise directly with your flight or train operator for up to date information on any changes to departure times or protocols.


Any additional updates on the tie including any changes to entry procedures for fans with tickets will be made via:


RBTF website:


The ITF president Dave Haggerty said that they want to make sure the Davis Cup players, fans and staff are safe.

For Great Britain, this will be their 18th final as they look to win their 10th Davis Cup title. They lost their last final in 1972 against the United States. Belgium has never won Davis Cup, losing to Great Britain in their only final in 1904 5-0 at Wimbledon.


This is the 12th meeting between Belgium and Great Britain, but only their second since 1963. Britain leads 7-4. Belgium won their last meeting 4-1 in Europe/Africa Zone Group I in Glasgow in 2012, with 3 members of the Belgium team nominated for this year’s Final – Ruben Bemelmans, Steve Darcis and David Goffin – all winning rubbers. Great Britain has not beaten Belgium since 1963, when it won 5-0 on clay in Brussels.





Venue: Flanders Expo, Ghent (clay – indoors)

David Goffin (BEL) v Kyle Edmund (GBR)

Ruben Bemelmans (BEL) v Andy Murray (GBR)



Kimmer Coppejans/Steve Darcis (BEL) v Andy Murray/Jamie Murray (GBR)



David Goffin (BEL) v Andy Murray (GBR)

Ruben Bemelmans (BEL) v Kyle Edmund (GBR)


Related Article: Tennis Channel to Air Davis Cup Final


Tennis Channel to Air Davis Cup Final Between Great Britain and Belgium

(November 23, 2015 Tennis Channel will provide exclusive live coverage of Britain’s and Belgium’s Davis Cup final competition in Ghent, Belgium this weekend, beginning Friday, Nov. 27, at 7:30 a.m. ET. Two-time Grand slam champion and Olympic gold medalist Andy Murray will lead Britain as it attempts to capture its first title in 79 years. Murray recently defeated top-ranked David Goffin of Belgium at the ATP Masters 1000 in Paris. However, this was on an indoor hard court while the final will be played on indoor clay.
The championship competition will consist of two singles matches on Friday, Nov. 27, at 7:30 a.m. ET, followed by the doubles match Saturday, Nov. 28,at 9 a.m. ET.  Tennis Channel’s coverage concludes with the remaining singles play Sunday, Nov. 29, at 7 a.m. ET. Each of the five matches is worth one point, with the team that wins at least three points winning the Davis Cup title.
Tennis Channel’s live Davis Cup final coverage is as follows (all time ET):
Friday, Nov. 27:
7:30 a.m.– Live Singles
Saturday, Nov. 28:
9 a.m.– Live Doubles
Sunday, Nov. 29:
7 a.m. – Live Singles
Britain holds a 7-4 advantage over Belgium, but Belgium won the most recent competition in 2012. The Belgian team has not reached the Davis Cup final since 1904, when Britain defeated it 5-0. Belgium is bidding to win its first title.
The British team enters this weekend’s final for the first time in 37 years after a 3-2 semifinal victory over Australia in Glasgow, Scotland. Britain has clinched the Davis Cup trophy on nine occasions, but the most recent was in 1936.  Britain’s captain Leon Smith will lead Murray, Kyle Edmund, Jamie Murray and Dominic Inglot into the finals this weekend.
Belgium earned its spot in this weekend’s championship after a 3-2 win over Argentina in its semifinal.  The Belgian team is captained by Johan Van Herck and features Goffin, Steve Darcis, Ruben Bemelmans and Kimmer Coppejans.

Czech Republic Versus Russia Fed Cup Final Coverage on Tennis Channel This Weekend

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(November 12, 2015) LOS ANGELES Tennis Channel will have exclusive, live coverage of the Czech Republic’s and Russia’s Fed Cup championship in Prague, Czech Republic, this weekend, with comprehensive telecasts Saturday, Nov. 14, and Sunday, Nov. 15. Five-time major winner Maria Sharapova of Russia will face two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova after having recently lost to the Czech star at the WTA Finals two weeks ago. Sharapova has the career upper hand, though, holding a 6-4 record against Kvitova.
The final  between reigning Fed Cup titlist Czech Republic and Russia will consist of two singles matches on Saturday, and two singles matches and the doubles match Sunday. Tennis Channel will carry all matches, beginning at 8a.m. ET on Saturday and 6 a.m. ET on Sunday.
The Czech Republic and Russia have faced each other five times in Fed Cup play, with the Czech Republic holding a 3-2 advantage. The most recent competition between the two countries took place in the 2011 Fed Cup championship, when the Czech Republic upset Russia32to win its eighth Fed Cup title. The Czech Republic, with eight titles, is the second-most successful nation on the all-time list of Fed Cup champions, behind only the United States (17).
Tennis Channel’s Fed Cup Final coverage is as follows (all time ET):
Saturday, Nov. 14:
8a.m. –Live Singles #1
10a.m. –Live Singles #2
Sunday, Nov. 15:
6a.m. –Live Singles #3
11a.m. –Singles #4*
(*Digital-subscription service Tennis Channel Plus will carry the doubles match live following Sunday’s singles play, at approximately 11 a.m. ET)
The Czech Republic enters this weekend’s matchup after an impressive 3-1 semifinal victory over France in Ostrava, Czech Republic. Defending Fed Cup champion Czech Republic has not lost a final since 1986, when it competed as Czechoslovakia. The Czech team is captained by Petr Pala and features Kvitova, Lucie Safarova, Karolina Pliskova and Barbora Strycova.
Russia earned its spot in this weekend’s matchup after an impressive 3-2 victory over Germany in its semifinal round, and is in its first final since 2013. The Russians dominated the mid-2000s with two sets of separate back-to-back championships in 2004 and 2005, and again in 2007 and 2008. Russia’s team is captained by Anastasia Myskina and features Sharapova, Ekaterina Makarova, Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Elena Vesnina.

Tennis Channel To Air ATP World Tour Finals Live

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(November 12, 2015) LOS ANGELES – Beginning Sunday, Nov. 15, at 7 a.m. ET, Tennis Channel will again become the television home of the annual season-ending Barclays ATP World Tour Finals. The network’s coverage of the eight-day event between the top-eight singles players and doubles teams in tennis this year will feature live matches throughout the day, followed by 8 p.m.-4 a.m. primetime encores each evening. Tennis Channel will devote close to 60 live hours and more than 120 overall to the most exclusive tournament on the men’s tour, with all 57 matches televised, and all but three of them live.
As men’s tennis crowns its 2015 singles and doubles champions, Tennis Channel’s typical daily lineup begins with a doubles match each morning at 7 a.m. ET, immediately followed by singles play at 9 a.m. ET (a complete schedule is below). The doubles-then-singles format resumes from 1 p.m.-5 p.m. ET, before a primetime recap of the entire day’s matches gets underway at 8 p.m. ET and runs throughout the late night and early morning.
Emmy Award-winning announcer Brett Haber (@BrettHaber) will handle call play-by-play for Tennis Channel during the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals, and be joined by analysts Jim Courier and Paul Annacone (@paul_annacone). Both former players, Hall of Famer Courier has guided the United States Davis Cup team as its captain since 2010, while Annacone has become one of the sport’s most renowned coaches for his successes with all-time greats Pete Sampras and Roger Federer.
The Barclays ATP World Tour Finals takes place in London’s raucous O2 Arena at the end of the men’s tennis season, and is reserved for only the top-eight singles and doubles points earners of 2015. Singles players are split into two groups of four, with a guaranteed three matches for each against every other contender in his division. The top two in each group advance to traditional, single-elimination semifinals with the winners playing for the championship on Sunday, Nov. 22.
With doubles following the same format, the round-robin arrangement ensures match after match of top-ranked players, in battles reminiscent of the latter rounds of any of the four majors.
This year’s singles draw reads like a Who’s Who of Grand Slam champions and future Hall of Famers, with: Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray, Stan Wawrinka, Tomas Berdych, David Ferrer and Kei Nishikori. The strong doubles field includes American twins Bob and Mike Bryan – perhaps the greatest ever – as well as Jean-Julien Rojer-Horia Tecau, Jamie Murray-John Peers, Ivan Dodig-Marcelo Melo, Simone Bolelli-Fabio Fognini, Pierre-Hugues Herbert-Nicolas Mahut, Marcin Matkowski-Nenad-Zimonjic and Rohan Bopanna-Florin Mergea.
Following the second singles semifinal Saturday, Nov. 21, Tennis Channel will air a special half-hour interview with women’s tennis star Maria Sharapova. Holding Serve with Maria Sharapova is slated for 5:15 p.m. ET and offers a revealing look at the global phenomenon’s life and career through a candid one-on-one conversation with Haber.
Mobile users can follow all the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals action via the authenticated linear stream on Tennis Channel’s Tennis Channel Everywhere app. Free to everyone in the United States, most Tennis Channel subscribers can simply enter their pay-TV provider credentials and access the network live at no additional cost. The channel’s website,, will feature articles from veteran reporter and author Steve Flink, as well as real-time scoring from London, and can be accessed via mobile device.
Tennis Channel’s 2015 ATP World Tour Finals Schedule: (All matches are live unless otherwise indicated with * for same-day delay)
                 Date                                             Time (ET)                                       Event
Sunday, Nov. 15
7 a.m. -11 a.m.; 1 p.m.-5 p.m.
Doubles and Singles Round-Robin Matches
Monday, Nov. 16
7 a.m. -11 a.m.; 1 p.m.-5 p.m.
Doubles and Singles Round-Robin Matches
Tuesday, Nov. 17
7 a.m. -11 a.m.; 1 p.m.-5 p.m.
Doubles and Singles Round-Robin Matches
Wednesday, Nov. 18
7 a.m. -11 a.m.; 1 p.m.-5 p.m.
Doubles and Singles Round-Robin Matches
Thursday, Nov. 19
7 a.m. -11 a.m.; 1 p.m.-3 p.m.; 8 p.m.-10 p.m.*
Doubles and Singles Round-Robin Matches
Friday, Nov. 20
7 a.m. -11 a.m.; 12:45 p.m.-2:30 p.m.; 8 p.m.-10 p.m.*
Doubles and Singles Round-Robin Matches
Saturday, Nov. 21
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.*
Double Final; Doubles and Singles Finals

Tennis Channel to Air Davis Cup Semifinals and USA-Uzbekistan Tie


LOS ANGELES, Sept. 16, 2015 -Tennis Channel will provide exclusive live coverage of the U.S. Davis Cup team’s competition against Uzbekistan in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, this weekend, with the telecast beginning at 12:30 a.m. ET, Friday, Sept. 18. The United States must defeat Uzbekistan to qualify for the 2016 Davis Cup tournament. Second-ranked American player Jack Sock will join Sam Querrey, Steve Johnson and Donald Young as they fight for a spot in next year’s Davis Cup tournament, after the Americans lost their first-round match to Britain in March.
In addition to televising the United StatesUzbekistan matchup this weekend, Tennis Channel will cover the 2015 Davis Cup semifinals, with live coverage of Britain-Australia play in Glasgow, Scotland, beginning at 8 a.m. ET. Highlighting the competition, World No. 3 Andy Murray will face Australia’s Lleyton Hewitt in a battle of former Wimbledon and US Open champions.
Viewers can also catch the Belgium-Argentina semifinal live in its entirety on the network’s digital-subscription service, Tennis Channel Plus. Available to everyone in the United States regardless of whether or not they subscribe to Tennis Channel, the platform will also feature live coverage of the Dominican Republic-Germany 2016tournament qualifier in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. Stars set to play in this weekend’s Davis Cup competition include Britain‘s Murray, Australia’s Bernard Tomic and Hewitt, Belgium’s David Goffin and Germany’s Philipp Kohlschreiber.
Tennis Channel’s on-air coverage is as follows (all time ET):
Friday, Sept. 18:
12:30a.m. – Live Singles USA vs. Uzbekistan
8a.m. – Live Singles Britain vs. Australia
Saturday, Sept. 19:
2:30a.m. – Live Doubles USA vs. Uzbekistan
8a.m. – Live Doubles Britain vs. Australia
Sunday, Sept. 20:
12:30a.m. – Live Singles USA vs. Uzbekistan
8a.m. – Live Singles Britain vs. Australia
Tennis Channel’s Davis Cup announcers will include Emmy Award-winning sportscaster Brett Haber (@BrettHaber), former U.S. Davis Cup player Justin Gimelstob (@justingimelstob), former tennis player Leif Shiras (@LShirock) and renowned tennis coach Paul Annacone (@paul_annacone).
The United States and Uzbekistan have never faced each other in Davis Cup play. The Americans must defeat Uzbekistan in order to compete in the 2016 Davis Cup competition. The U.S. squad leads all nations with 32Davis Cup championships.
The team is captained by Jim Courier, who as a player helped the American squad win the Davis Cup in 1992 and 1995. Among its players, Sock won his first career ATP singles title in April at the Men’s Clay Court Championships in Houston. Querrey holds seven ATP singles titles and reached the final at Nottingham and Houston this year. Johnson advanced to the third round at this year’s Australian Open and French Open before falling to eventual champion Stan Wawrinka. Young advanced to his second ATP singles final in Delray Beach, Fla., and reached the semifinals and doubles final in Memphis earlier this year.
If Uzbekistan wins this weekend it will qualify for a chance to play for the 2016 Davis Cup. Uzbekistan’s team is captained by Petr Lebed and features Denis Istomin, Farrukh Dustov, Temur Ismailov and Sanjar Fayziev.

Martina Navratilova Talks French Open on Tennis Channel Media Conference Call


(May 20, 2015) Ahead of the French Open, which begins on Sunday, May 24, Tennis Channel held a media conference call with tennis Hall of Famer Martina Navratilova, who serves as the lead women’s analyst for the network.

Here is the transcript of the conference call, courtesy of the Tennis Channel and ASAPsports:

There’s a lot of increased scrutiny of late for even for minor tournaments. Time was that there was almost no attention paid to them and all attention was paid to the majors. And do you think that that scrutiny on these tune‑ups heightens the stakes for when the majors come out, like Roland‑Garros?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: I’m not sure I understand the question. You’re saying there’s too much media attention on the Grand Slams and not on anything else?

No, I think when you were playing tennis, there wasn’t a lot of attention, media attention ‑‑ they didn’t broadcast minor tennis events.

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: No, it’s the other way around. It’s the other way around, actually. In my opinion we had, it was the Tour that really buttressed the Grand Slams and certainly the players, we didn’t even play some Grand Slams because the Tour was the more important bit of the calendar. And it was only really in the late, maybe, ’80s and the ’90s that the Grand Slams became so powerful and players would schedule their whole year around slams. Nobody would even think of missing a slam now.

And those are the four big focal points of the year, whereas in my time it was Wimbledon and U.S. Open and the Tour as a whole and then the year‑ending championships was the third biggest tournament of the year. So I think the media did pay attention to the other tournaments and certainly the players were thinking that the other tournaments were more important, perhaps, than they are now.

And why was that?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: Why? Because there was more prize money in the regular tournaments than Grand Slams. Once the Grand Slams got bigger and got more money, more people paid attention to where the money is, basically. And also more worldwide television rights and media attention and all that.

So one kind of followed the other. I’m not sure what came first, the chicken and the egg thing, but we would get more money for, I think the prize money at the year‑end championships was like twice as much and that was for one week than what you would get in a Grand Slam for two weeks. You can do some research on the prize money, but it was a lot more on the regular tour.

I made more money winning a tournament in Dallas, Virginia Slims of Dallas, than I would at a Grand Slam ‑‑ than I would Wimbledon. When I won Wimbledon in ’78 I got, I think, $20,000 for winning it.


I suppose, Martina, that the focal point coming into the French Open is the prospects of Rafa Nadal. What have you seen this year in Rafa, what is he lacking that he hasn’t in the past and has age finally taken its toll on him?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: I don’t know how much of it is ‑‑ I think it’s a little bit of everything. He seems to me a little bit less physically looking imposing. And I don’t know if it’s just my imagination. Just doesn’t seem to be as muscular as he was five or six years ago.


But he’s still in the prime of his physical life, maybe he trains differently maybe because of his injuries he can’t train as hard as he used to, but not sure.


Most of all I think it’s the other players are playing better and hitting a lot more top spin on the ball, hitting the ball harder, which does not give him the time to run around his backhand and dictate with the forearm, he has to kind of be more in the middle of the court.


He can’t park himself on the right side of the court. And also by his own admission, he gets more nervous now. And when he does get more nervous, his forehand goes shorter. Even when he does get to hit the forehand, he doesn’t hit it as deep, with as much, with as much depth and maybe power.


I’m not sure. You would have to kind of figure out the revolutions per minute. But I would bet dollars to donuts that the other players are using more spin than they did two years ago, 10 years ago, certainly. So that could be a combination of everything.


Was his effectiveness on clay a factor of how much top spin he could put on the ball and the fact that the ball dug in so great?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: His movement and the top spin, yeah. Because of the top spin, players had a hard time attacking it and getting on top of the ball. And once they get on the defense, it was really hard to get off it. And his unbelievable speed around the court.


But do you still think he’s anywhere near the prime of his career at this point?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: Oh, absolutely. Absolutely. I mean, it could be that he’s just having a bad year or bad six months, whatever. We don’t know if he’s 100 percent healthy because only he knows that and his team.


So people tend to write people off too soon I think in my opinion. I mean, Roger Federer said himself, until Rafa loses at the French he still has to be a favorite. You can’t just throw out the last 10 years based on the last few months.


But certainly he’s, I’m sure, feeling most vulnerable. And he’s looking most vulnerable. And that gives the other guys confidence when they play him. Before it was, like, I don’t want to get embarrassed playing Rafa and now they think they have a chance. That’s a huge edge to them. Now he’s forced to play even better to beat the same guy.


So it’s kind of a nasty spiral that happens. But I still wouldn’t write him off. I mean, you can’t. You just cannot. Three out of five is a different animal as well. It’s harder to keep up that kind of intensity and physical play that it takes to beat Rafa over three out of five sets as opposed to two out of three ‑‑ and gives him some room for his own game as well.


I know we don’t have a draw yet, but who do you favor as winning on the men’s side and the women’s side in singles?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: I think so much will depend on the draw in both of these. But particularly on the men’s side, with Rafa, I believe he’s ranked 7. So he could be playing these top three players in the quarters as opposed to the semis or finals.

That makes it difficult for whosever quarter he lands in and everything else how it plays out as well. Andy Murray now is looking like one of the favorites as well. Novak obviously is a huge favorite to win the event. But I’m sure that he’s not thinking that way, not yet. Not as long as Rafael Nadal is in the tournament.


So it’s really going to depend on who gets hot and how the draw plays out. The same time you only have to play seven guys. You don’t have to play everybody. But still the draw may dictate a lot in how the conditions are, the balls are pretty light. But conditions can get heavy.


So all of that will play out and that’s the beauty of it. We really don’t know. But all in all, if you just look at how this year has played out, Djokovic, it would be hard to, again, bet against Djokovic. And the same thing on the women’s side, Serena Williams, even though she’s had a odd run up to the French.   In years past, the run up the Grand Slam really had nothing to do with how she did at that Grand Slam.


So you still have to go with the world’s number one ‑‑ Novak and Serena.


Can you tell me what you miss from the era that you played tennis, what you miss on the tennis scene now?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: It’s just a different time. You get the pluses and minuses. I do miss more of the clash of styles.

There was more variety in styles with the typical baseliner and the all‑court players and then the more of the serve and volleyers, attacking players. It’s now a more homogenous look, but at the same time on the women’s side particularly I see more variety than they’ve had five years ago, 10 years ago. The guys have been there for a while.


But the women, I think, were more homogenous in that, for example, I keep going back to the final between Kuznetsova and Dementieva in the 2004 U.S. Open final. And I think there was one volley, one drop shot and three slices the whole match.

And now, you know, you get that in one rally. So you have a lot more variety with the actual play, which makes it more fun. I think the spectators are in for better treats nowadays with more variety.

People still play similarly but there’s more variety within that.


Still play similarly to when you were playing ‑‑

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: No, no, they play similar to each other. They play similar style. More of a ‑‑ I mean, there are two basic styles. Ones that really try to play big babe tennis, as Mary Carillo calls it, and then there are the counter puncher’s. But within the big babe tennis you see a lot more people using slices and coming into the net, putting the volley away. And same with the counter punchers, now they just don’t play defense, if they can get on offense they will do so.


And again a lot more slices, a lot more drop shots. You see Maria Sharapova, she’s hitting drop hands from the backhand and the forehand. She never hit a drop shot 10 years ago, now she uses it very well.


She hits them from the baseline.

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: Drop shots are usually hit from the baseline. But she’s usually in an offensive position so she plays them at the right time. And she’s hitting between volley. You won’t see chip and charge, but you will see her, as soon as she hits a deep, good ball, she’ll move in to see if she can knock off the next ball in the air, but she’ll hit swinging volleys rather than punch volleys that we used to hit. But still hitting volleys.


Were you asked about Maria Sharapova in general and what you think her chances are coming in?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: Well, obviously great. And they’re always improved when she ‑‑ well, with Maria, obviously it’s a case whether she has to play Serena Williams or not because she hasn’t beat her in 10 years. But she’s been the best clay court player the last three years, except she hadn’t been able to beat Serena, but she’s beaten everybody else and has the most consistent record on clay than everybody. So she has to be one of the favorites. But it always comes with a caveat ‑‑ what happens if she plays Serena? Serena particularly now is kind of an unknown because of the run‑up that she’s had, not really finishing tournaments or didn’t finish two and one she lost in the semis. So it’s hard to tell.


But Serena always comes out playing her best tennis in the slams. So, yeah, absolutely Maria has to be one of the favorites. She must be pretty well after Rome, kept playing better and better tennis. Although, also the matches were pretty close, particularly the semifinal in Rome. Could have gone either way.


What is it with her and Serena, do you think ‑‑ how much of it is mental and how much of it is just her game, and what do you think she would have to do to finally overcome Serena if they were to meet at the end there?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: She would have to serve extremely well, because that’s what Serena always has on, all things being equal, which they’re not; but Serena serves, wins so many more points off her serve, whereas with Maria the serve has been more of a ‑‑ it’s either neutral or it can even be a negative for her starting the points against Serena.


So she needs to serve really well. But she has been serving better in Rome, particularly she was hitting her second serve in the high 90s, her second serve was coming in.

So she was getting on the offense with her second serve, never mind the first serve. But Serena does everything a little bit better than Maria or some things a lot better, the serving is a lot better.


And the ground stroke she can now sustain a rally, 10 shots, 20 shots, and then go for the ‑‑ when she goes for the jugular she hits it just a little bit harder than Maria.


And Maria’s foot speed hurts her against Serena. She’s gotten so much better. She’s quick enough against most players. But she can’t defend as well. Serena defends better than Maria if she has to. And her foot speed is better around the court. And that hurts Maria. She needs to be on offense. But with Serena she has a hard time getting on offense because Serena tees off so early in the rally, whether the serve or return of serve.


And also Serena, clearly, plays her best Sundays against Maria Sharapova. She totally rises to the occasion where she might be a bit listless against other opponents or maybe give them a set, maybe not the match, but give them a set. With Maria, she doesn’t give away points, never mind sets. She’s always fired up.   You can see how badly both of them want it.


In following up on that, that rivalry seems to really be one, we always talk about how the game, whether it’s men or women, that rivalries is such a big deal in tennis. And this Serena/Maria one is one that still carries after so many years. Would you agree it’s one of the best rivalries in women’s tennis?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: It’s amazing that it carries because it’s so one‑sided. But it’s the personality of the two players involved that makes it so compelling, no matter what the result.

So it’s great for tennis. I mean, tennis is such a one‑on‑one battle that the rivalries are an essential part of that.


You want to identify with the people. You want to identify with the personalities. You want to identify with their game, and the only way to do that is if there’s a rivalry going on.


I mean, people love Rafa Nadal and they love Roger Federer, but they always fall into one camp more than the other, and will cheer for their player against the other, no matter what.

So it’s funny. And obviously you have that with Williams and Sharapova for different reasons. It’s just been a one‑sided result for the most part.


What is the lifetime, is it like 17‑2 or something?



I’d have to look it up, but that sounds close. It’s not close at all, yeah.

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: I mean, it’s been 10 years, but it hasn’t been that much matches. I think 15 matches in a row. I think ‑‑ I don’t have the numbers in front of me. But it’s over a long period of time.


I beat Chris Evert at one point 13 times in a row, but it was like in a two‑, two‑and‑a‑half‑year period. It didn’t seem that insurmountable. It just came in a closer chunk of time. It think it’s more difficult for Maria to deal with it because it’s been over such a long length of time.



She’s probably thinking: Sheesh, I was so young the last time I beat her.



Could you just maybe pick a couple of dark horses on the men’s and the women’s side and kind of like skim off the top, the Djokovic, Nadal, Murray, on the other side, Sharapova and Williams, could you just pick out a few players who you think have a chance to ‑‑

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: To win the whole thing? That’s a tall order. There’s a lot of players that can beat anybody on a given day. But to go all the way? I guess on the men’s side, Murray. Maybe not that dark, because he’s, what, 3 or 4 in the world.

And maybe Berdych also. He’s been playing some good ball but seems to falter still against the top guys. But he certainly looks fit and very focused and on a given day can compete against anybody.


And for just upsets, Kyrgios. Kyrgios, with that serve, can give anybody fits. I’m pretty sure the top players don’t really want to see him too close to them in the draw because he’s a flashy and can be an extremely dominating player the way he plays.

But this is clay, so hopefully it shouldn’t happen. But never know with him.


And on the women’s side, again dark horse, Halep can’t be a dark horse, she was in the finals last year. But she hasn’t broken through yet. So dark horse would be anybody to me that hasn’t won a Grand Slam.


I’m sorry?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: To me, a dark horse would be anybody that hasn’t won a Grand Slam, because then you haven’t done it yet, so we’re not really sure whether it’s going to happen or not.

So Halep would be in that category, certainly, but she’s 3 in the world. So, again, it’s hard to imagine somebody outside of top 10 going all the way on either women or men. They would just have to beat too many quality players.


I mean, there could be an opening in the draw where people kind of somehow scrape their way to the semis. But that’s hard to predict. It’s easier to predict a little bit once the draw comes out.

But it’s been such an up‑and‑down lead‑up to the tournament on the women’s side with Serena not finishing a tournament the last three she played, lost in the semis and defaulted the other two, correct?


And then you have Petra Kvitova winning in Madrid, playing amazing tennis, and then losing to Suárez Navarro easily. Suárez Navarro given that she can beat anybody, but I don’t think she has the firepower to go all the way, but you could see her in the finals as well.


And then there’s a player like Caroline Garcia on a given day can beat anybody. What’s the ‑‑ Pliskova, another Czech, who has got a big game. Perhaps not so suited for clay but grew up on the stuff.


She can hang with anybody. So it’s hard to tell but you still have to go with the favorites. Serena and Novak, obviously.



You were running off some names on the women’s side as possibilities. But one of them isn’t Sloane Stephens. Do you think she’s taken a step or two back from where she was about a year and a half ago?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: I think she’s moving back the right direction now. It seems to me since she’s been working with Nick ‑‑ God, I have a blank now ‑‑ the lefty. Nick Saviano. Complete blank. I see his face.


Since she’s been working back with Nick she’s been playing better tennis. I think she’s feeling more the urgency of not taking her time developing but, rather, making it happen quicker rather than slower.


So, yeah, she doesn’t have the cache and the promise maybe she held two or three years ago, but I think it’s still there if she just believes in it. On clay, her game does not transfer well on clay with her big forehand and a good serve.


It’s better suited for hard courts or grass. And also I’m not sure how well she moves on the clay. She’s such an amazing mover that on the clay she gets a little hampered because she can’t really push off that fast. I think, again, she’s better on grass or a hard court. But certainly looks like to me that she’s going in the right direction again, which is good to see.


Can you talk about the French Open and kind of what you love about that tournament in comparison to the other majors and other tournaments and what you think makes that event special in your eyes?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: The intimacy of it all. You can really get close to the players there, and it’s a smaller venue. So there’s a lot more going on within any area and you just feel, I think, the fans more there because when the Philippe‑Chatrier Court opens up and match finishes, everybody spills out and it gets pretty crowded.


And, of course, the red clay. It’s the only big tournament, well, the only slam that’s on red clay. And just the color makes you smile, you know.

So it’s one of a kind. And you’re in Paris. I mean, how tough can it be?


One off‑beat question. Does that red clay come out in the laundry, like from your socks and ‑‑ or are all the outfits ‑‑

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: Anytime the players fall on the ground, we say, oops, there went that skirt; there went that shirt. Socks, you throw out, because when you sweat and you get the clay on it, it’s goodbye.


So when that tournament’s over, everything just goes in the garbage?



And the shoes, too?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: Well, the shoes, you go on the grass. So, yes, they get pretty ‑‑ I mean, you may save them for other clay court tournaments. But most of the time the players, the shoes last a couple of days. That’s it.

I used to go through two pairs of shoes a week. I think the guys change them every match. And now maybe the women do, too. Depends on the kind of shoe. But they’re gone after a week, for sure. So definitely don’t save those.

Wondered if there was some great laundry detergent that got that clay out?

MARTINA NAVRATILOVA: If it’s there, I don’t know it.



Related article:

Tennis Channel Expands French Open Coverage with Two New Shows


Tennis Channel Expands French Open Coverage with Two New Shows



From Tennis Channel: LOS ANGELES, May 18, 2015 -In its ninth year of French Open coverage, Tennis Channel is launching two new preview shows that dive into the many variables of match ups and outcomes that could happen at the Paris-based major this year. The network will dedicate more than 13 total hours to Racquet Bracket: French Open and Tennis Channel Live at the French Open, premiering Friday, May 22, 8 p.m. ET and Saturday, May 23, 12 p.m. ET, respectively. Starting on Opening Day Sunday, May 24, through the men’s semifinals Friday, June 5, Tennis Channel will take viewers through 12 days of live coverage at the 2015 French Open, followed by same-day encore matches during the championship weekend. During the two-week event in the City of Light, the network will deliver more than 260 total hours of day-to-night coverage of the tournament, with more than 85 hours of live or first-run matches, nearly 45 hours of encore replays, and 122 hours of three-hour nightly primetime show French Open Tonight (37-and-a-half first-run) hosted by Bill Macatee.


“Tennis Channel has consistently added to its French Open coverage both on-air and digitally over the years,” said Jeremy Langer, vice president of programming, Tennis Channel. “We are continuing this with Racquet Bracket: French Open and Tennis Channel Live at the French Open, both of which will provide excellent context for viewers as we go into the tournament.”


Hall of Famer Tracy Austin (@thetracyaustin), 2007 French Open doubles champion Mark Knowles (@knowlzee10s) and award-winning sportscaster Steve Weissman (@Steve_Weissman) begin the network’s coverage, on the eve of the tournament, as hosts of the new one-hour French Open-draw show Racquet Bracket: French Open. The show breaks down the French Open draw, analyzing possible match ups that could take place in each round. Additionally, the show serves as an added boon for fans who partake in the network’s free annual online “Racquet Bracket” French Open prediction game.


Former World No. 1 Lindsay Davenport (@LDavenport76) along with 1998 French Open mixed doubles champion Justin Gimelstob (@justingimelstob) and renowned commentators Brett Haber (@BrettHaber) and Jon Wertheim (@jon_wertheim) will host the network’s new Tennis Channel Live at the French Open, a one-hour preview show, which takes place from the Tennis Channel set on tournament grounds in Paris. They will take the audience through the pageantry and prestige of the French Open as tennis’ top talent prepare to make history in one of the oldest stadiums in the sport – Stade Roland Garros.


The network’s usual daily schedule at the French Open is made up of nine-hour match blocks, which begin at 10 a.m. ET. Within each block, live coverage goes from 10 a.m.-3:30 p.m. ET most days, with encore replays from 3:30 p.m.-7 p.m. ET. Directly following is the nightly recap show French Open Tonight at 7 p.m. ET. After its initial run, the show then re-airs throughout the evening until the following morning. A complete schedule is available below.

French Open Tonight typically premieres from 7 p.m.-10 p.m. ET. It then airs two more times until 4 a.m. ET. Bill Macatee (@Bmacatee) – one of America’s most respected sportscasters – has hosted every season of the show, now in its ninth year. The program provides a nightly discussion of that day’s tournament action, and viewers can see interviews with top players, the day’s best highlights, feature pieces, and full-set and game replays when needed. Macatee talks with many guests on the show, from players fresh from the court to top coaches and tennis officials, as well as Hall of Famers, celebrities, reporters, network analysts and more.


Following early morning encore editions of French Open Tonight, the network will air daily highlights, from 4 a.m.-5 a.m. ET, produced by the French Open’s governing body, the French Tennis Federation. Directly following the highlights, ESPN2 begins its coverage at the start of each day’s play at 5 a.m. ET. As they have done since 2007, Tennis Channel and ESPN2 are offering viewers virtually non-stop, 24-hour coverage of the French Open. Tennis Channel produces all telecasts for both networks, with each cross-promoting the other’s telecast.


The week prior to the start of the French Open, Tennis Channel has a full slate of programming geared toward the tournament. In addition to the two new preview shows, viewers will be able to watch some of the best classic matches from recent French Open history. Starting May 19 through May 21, Tennis Channel will unveil a new classic match each day, ending with last year’s men’s final battle between Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic on May 23. Other matches include: Rafael Nadal versus Roger Federer (2005 semifinal); Serena Williams versus Maria Sharapova (2013 final); and Garbine Muguruza versus Serena Williams (2014 second round).


On-Air Talent

Tennis Channel’s on-air talent for the French Open, in addition to French Open Tonight host Macatee and Racquet Bracket: French Open‘s Austin, Knowles and Weissman, includes lead women’s analyst, Hall of Famer and two-time French Open champion Martina Navratilova (@Martina). Navratilova, who has won more singles titles than anyone who has ever played professional tennis, and Macatee have appeared together on air for every Tennis Channel Grand Slam telecast. They started their dynamic relationship with the 2007 French Open.


Joining Macatee and Navratilova are fellow Hall of Famers and former World No. 1s Lindsay Davenport, a host of Tennis Channel Live at the French Open, and Jim Courier, a two-time French Open winner. This will be Davenport’s sixth and Courier’s second French Open as analysts for Tennis Channel. Also contributing to hosting as well as on-air duties is Mary Carillo, who will be serving as a live desk host, analyst and reporter in her fifth French Open as a part of the Tennis Channel team.


Adding to the talent in the broadcasting booth is Tennis Channel Live at the French Open host Justin Gimelstob and USTA President Katrina Adams (@katadams68) in their ninth and eighth years with Tennis Channel at the French Open. Adams, who won 21 doubles titles on the WTA tour, is the first former professional player to ascend to the top position. Coming to the City of Light for his second year at the French Open with the network is the much storied Paul Annacone (@paul_annacone). Known for his coaching of Pete Sampras, Roger Federer and American star Sloane Stephens, Annacone will continue to part of the Tennis Channel booth.


Tennis Channel’s award-winning commentators will continue to bring their talent and know-how to Paris for the network. They include Ted Robinson (@tedjrobinson) in his ninth French Open for Tennis Channel, Ian Eagle (ninth), and former player and longtime tennis broadcaster Leif Shiras (@LShirock; eighth).


The Tennis Channel on-air team also includes Tennis Channel Live at the French Open hosts Brett Haber and Jon Wertheim. This is award-winning announcer Haber and Sports Illustrated executive editor and senior writer Wertheim’s fourth French Open with the network. Haber will serve as a commentator and announcer while Wertheim will again handle special reports as well as offer commentary for Tennis Channel.


Broadband and Digital Coverage

Tennis Channel’s Tennis Channel Everywhere app is free to all Apple and Android users regardless of whether they subscribe to Tennis Channel, and it contains daily updates, online video highlights, Court Report news updates and player Bag Check and instruction clips for no additional charge. However, most of those viewers who subscribe to the network through a cable provider can watch the channel live whenever and wherever they want, through a TV Everywhere function, also at no extra cost.


Tennis Channel Plus, the network’s groundbreaking digital subscription service launched at last year’s tournament, will have a continuous live feed of multi-court coverage, with up to five courts available to stream the first five days of the tournament, and then three courts the next three days.


Tennis Channel Plus’ more than 360 hours of live coverage includes late-round matches like the women’s singles semifinals.


Again in 2015, veteran tennis reporters Steve Flink and Joel Drucker (@joeldrucker) will be covering all the action on Paris’ clay courts and filing columns directly to Tennis Channel’s website, Besides up-to-the-minute news and detailed analysis from Drucker and Flink, fans will also have access to interactive tournament draws, real-time scoring, photos, daily highlights, interviews, features and segments from French Open Tonight through the Tennis Channel website.


For additional content, Tennis Channel’s social media platforms will offer a multi-platform experience for fans looking to stay engaged across the entirety of the tournament. To connect with Tennis Channel, visit: Facebook (, Twitter (, YouTube (, Instagram ( and Pinterest (


Tennis Channel’s Live 2015 French Open Match Schedule

(Men’s/Women’s Singles Unless Otherwise Specified)


Date                                        Time (ET)                  Event                                     

Sunday, May 24                      10 a.m.-3:30 p.m.        First-Round Action

Monday, May 25                    10 a.m.-3:30 p.m.        First-Round Action

Tuesday, May 26                    10 a.m.-3:30 p.m.        First-Round Action

Wednesday, May 27               10 a.m.-3:30 p.m.        Second-Round Action

Thursday, May 28                   10 a.m.-3:30 p.m.        Second-Round Action

Friday, May 29                       10 a.m.-3:30 p.m.        Third-Round Action

Saturday, May 30                   5 a.m.-Noon                Third-Round Action

Sunday, May 31                      5 a.m.-1 p.m.               Round-of-16 Action

Monday, June 1                      10 a.m.-3:30 p.m.        Round-of-16 Action

Tuesday, June 2                      8 a.m.-1 p.m.               Quarterfinals

Thursday, June 4                     6 a.m.-9 a.m.               Mixed-Doubles Final

Thursday, June 4                 9 a.m.-2 p.m.             Women’s Semifinals (Tennis Channel Plus)

Friday, June 5                         7 a.m.-11 a.m.             Men’s Semifinal


This year, French Open encore match coverage on Tennis Channel will include same-day replays of the men’s and women’s singles quarterfinals, semifinals and finals as well as the men’s and women’s doubles finals, as follows (ET):


Wednesday, June 3 – 1 p.m.-7 p.m.: men’s and women’s singles quarterfinals

Thursday, June 4 – 2 p.m.-7 p.m.: women’s semifinals

Friday, June 5 – 5 p.m.-12 a.m.: men’s semifinals

Saturday, June 6 – 9 p.m.-11 p.m.: women’s final; 11 p.m.-12:30 a.m.: men’s doubles final

Sunday, June 7 – 9 p.m.-12 a.m.: men’s final; 12 a.m.-1:30 a.m.: women’s doubles final


(Additional encores will air subsequent days of the tournament and during the week of June 8.)


Tennis Channel’s French Open Tonight Schedule (ET)

French Open Tonight will premiere from Sunday, May 24 through Friday, May 29, 7 p.m.-10 p.m. Immediately following each premiere are back-to-back replays from 10 p.m.-1 a.m. and 1 a.m.-4 a.m. During the first weekend of the tournament, French Open Tonight will debut from 3 p.m.-6 p.m. and will re-air three consecutive times, 6 p.m. -9 p.m.; 9 p.m.-12 a.m.; 12 a.m.-3 a.m. on Saturday, May 30, and on Sunday, May 31.


For the second week of the tournament, French Open Tonight will premiere Monday, June 1, from 7 p.m.-10 p.m. followed by three encores, 10 p.m.-1 a.m.; 1 a.m.-3:30 a.m.; 4:30 a.m.-7:30 a.m. On Tuesday, June 2, the show will debut from 5 p.m.-8 p.m. followed by four encores from 8 p.m.-11 p.m.; 11 p.m.-2 a.m.; 2 a.m.-4:30 a.m.; 4:30-7:30 a.m. On Wednesday, June 3, French Open Tonight will premiere from 7 p.m.-10 p.m. followed by two encores from 10 p.m.-1 a.m. and 1 a.m.-4 a.m. The final French Open Tonight will debut Thursday, June 4, and will consist of a four-and-a-half hour special edition from 7 p.m.-11:30 p.m. and will run again once, from 11:30 p.m.-4 a.m.






Tennis Channel Launches Streaming Channel on the Roku Platform


LOS ANGELES, March 12, 2015 – Beginning today, Tennis Channel is available to millions of Roku® customers just in time for two of the biggest tournaments of the year: March’s “Fifth Slam” events in Southern California now underway and Miami. Roku customers have two options available to view live and on-demand action from Tennis Channel. Those who already subscribe to Tennis Channel through their satellite, telco or cable provider will have access to Tennis Channel Everywhere on their Roku players and Roku TVmodels. Roku customers also have the option of subscribing to Tennis Channel Plus, the network’s digital subscription service.

Tennis Channel Everywhere gives customers access to incredible live tennis action throughout the year, including more than 180 hours of overall network coverage during Southern California and Miami competitions.  Customers with Tennis Channel Plus are able to watch more than 600 additional live matches from more than 40 tournaments around the world – including the Australian Open and French Open – as well as thousands of hours of classic matches and on-demand programming. This includes archived semifinals and finals at major events like Wimbledon, as well as Grand Slam classics.

Roku customers can access Tennis Channel Everywhere and/or Tennis Channel Plus content with a single, easy-to-use streaming channel on the Roku platform, named Tennis Channel. Tennis Channel is the first, and most extensive, live and archived tennis streaming channel currently available on Roku players and Roku TV models.

“Launching a channel on the Roku platform marks a consistent effort by Tennis Channel to keep our digital offerings at the forefront of today’s media and entertainment innovations,” said Patrick Wilson, senior vice president of distribution, Tennis Channel. “With close to 90 percent of the live tennis on TV, we are constantly striving to give our audiences the convenience and freedom to access Tennis Channel when, where and how they want it on their smartphone, tablet and now on the Roku platform, which reaches millions of consumers. When combined with Tennis Channel Plus, we’re delivering unparalleled options for the in-home tennis viewing experience.”


“Tennis Channel offers our customers an unparalleled amount of live and on-demand tennis content and adds to Roku’s industry-leading lineup of sports channels,” said Ziba Kaboli-Gerbrands, Director of Content Acquisition for Roku. “We focus on providing our customers with choice in how and when they watch entertainment. With the option to stream Tennis Channel Everywhere and/or subscribe to Tennis Channel Plus, Roku customers can get the tennis action that’s best for them.”


A subscription to the Tennis Channel Plus 24/7 service is $69.99 for an annual pass and is available for purchase on Roku players and Roku TV models. Tennis Channel Plus gives fans access to exclusive content that is not available anywhere else – not even on Tennis Channel. The service is accessible to everyone who subscribes, regardless of whether they have a subscription to Tennis Channel through their satellite, telco or cable providers. Subscribers can watch live, exclusive match play from Davis Cup and Fed Cup competitions as well as ATP and WTA Tour events throughout the year, including the Southern California and Miami tournaments. In addition to robust highlights from these events, they can explore thousands of hours of on-demand programming, including current series episodes and viewer favorites Bag Check and Court Report.

Launching on the Roku platform marks a continuation in Tennis Channel’s extensive digital growth in the past year. When the network launched Tennis Channel Plus in May, it was the first to pair a TV Everywhere function with a digital subscription service, all in one app. With digital content ever increasing in its customer popularity, offerings like Tennis Channel Plus and Tennis Channel Everywhere have become invaluable – enabling audiences to choose when, where and how they want to participate, with an enriched viewing experience. This is especially worthwhile in tennis, a sport that often has multiple events in different time zones across different continents in the course of the same day.


Murray seals the deal as GB win their first round tie over the USA again

Murray UnderArmour

(March 8, 2015) GLASGOW, SCOTLAND – If at all possible the applause the loudest it has been for the three days, as the live fourth rubber set up a thrilling conclusion to the Great Britain-US Davis Cup tie.


With a vocal John Isner thundering down six aces in just his second service game, before he closed it out, you had a feeling we could be going to very long tie-breaks. After all if Isner hits six aces he would expect to be up by a couple of games at least, and not requiring that effort just to nab his second.


In fact it was the flat-footed-sounding Isner that flirted with the first break-point opportunities dulling the enthusiasm of the Glasgow crowd for just a little. There would be more drama to come in the eighth game as Murray put the crowd’s loyalty through its paces delivering them two double-faults and fending off three break points before finally grinding out a hold.


Isner might be one big unit but he showed early on how he could keep pace in the kinds of rallies that Murray likes to use. And it’s not as if the Brit was struggling with his movement, even throwing in one of those drop shots at a crunch moment for an audacious winner.


But there was no denying that Isner was beginning to get his eye in. He was less vocal and less slap-footed around the court now as he sensed he could turn the screw. Pushing Andy Murray every step of the way as the Brit was serving at 4-5, Isner forced 3 set points as the weak second Murray serve presented very hittable opportunities. Yet he could not take advantage as Murray dredged up serves to get him out of trouble.


We got to a first set tie-break, but not quite in the manner we thought, and soe terrible shot-making from Isner put GB in front by just enough to keep the advantage, and a collective sigh of relief from 7,700 people.


The second set saw Murray hold his serve much more comfortably, and even if Isner was getting a look at his second serve, much of the American’s pace on his whipping forehand was tempered as Murray earned his first break point on the Isner serve after one hour and 25 minutes. Even then, Murray showed him no less than three looks at a second serve as he worked to consolidate the break, to no avail for the American.

Two sets up, the question was would this go the distance, or even creep over four sets? Again there were moments when it looked as though Isner would steal the upper hand as Murray squandered his challenges and sent a few pleading looks the way of the umpire as Isner’s serves thundered past him.


Pushing up to a tie-break again, there was a huge crescendo of noise which, if anything, was louder than Murray’s entry into the arena. If the first mini-break was enough to get hopes up, as Murray surged ahead to finish it with an ace to book the British team into the quarter-finals. Final score 7-6(4), 6-3, 7-6(4).


Interviewed on court after jumping around with members of the team, Murray did the honours in thanking the crowd as well as hinting that perhaps it might be time for Tennis Scotland to use grass for something other than football.


“The whole week has been so much fun. This is one of the most special atmospheres I’ve ever played in so I would like to say a big thank you to all these guys,“ Murray said.

“With a home tie against France in the summer I’d imagine we would try to put that on a grass court. I don’t know how many they have in Glasgow but if they could lay one that would be great as the atmosphere has been incredible.”

“To be in the quarterfinals for a second year when it hasn’t happened for so long is incredible.”

Last year the British team also knocked out the USA in the first round of Davis Cup on a clay court in San Diego.


“This is a deserved win,” Murray said. “The attitude of everyone was excellent. Everyone fought extremely hard, especially when we were behind in the matches, no one gave up. Every person played extremely hard.

“It was huge momentum for us in winning James’ (Ward) match. We were also so close yesterday to winning 3-0, so I felt some pressure today to close it out. The way John approached the match made it difficult.”

Asked about Great Britain’s chances to win Davis Cup, US Captain Jim Courier said:

“When you have a great champion like Andy, against most teams, they should feel like they are up 2-0 going in. The way their doubles team played was impressive. Bob and Mike played unbelievably well yesterday and they were pushed to the wire. It only takes three to win.”

So where does the US Davis Cup team go from here?

“Our team changes, ‘ Courier said.  “You always try to make some adjustments and go forward. We play again in September, so I have time to assess everything. It takes time to process defeats like this and try to figure out what you can learn from it and improve going forward.”


With the next tie straight after Wimbledon, debates are already taking place as to where possible venues could be, as the prospect of holding an outside tournament in an English summer against the French could be intriguing.

The Davis Cup quarter-finals will take place between July 17 – 19.

As for the United States, they will play for a chance to stay in the World Group the week after the US Open concludes in September in the World Group Play-offs.

Ros Satar is a British sports journalist and a writer at


Bryan Brothers Keep Hope Alive for US with Five-set Win in Davis Cup


(March 7, 2015) GLASGOW, SCOTLAND – If you had asked anyone at the start of the day whether they would expect to be on the edge of their seats once more in Glasgow, you would have been hard pushed to find anyone to agree with you.

For team USA, the Bryan brothers came to play and they ripped through the first two sets in less than an hour, and even had match points to end it all in the fourth set, but somehow the Brits found a way to hang on.

It was not the easiest of comebacks for Jamie Murray, who got the nod to play along with the in-form Dominic Inglot who had already recorded two wins this season over the twins.

Finally holding his serve in the third set, it seemed to spur the Brits on to greater glories as the Bryan’s intensity dropped a little, while Dominic Inglot proved to be on fire at the net and Murray started to paint the lines with burning accuracy,

There was a hint of danger for the scratch pairing in front of an enthusiastic home crowd as the tall rangy Inglot found himself under pressure to hold his serve for the first time but dig himself out of a whole with some very solid serving as Murray dug deep to hold again to force a fourth set tie-breaker.

Two set points came and went for the Brits but they struggled to make it count, and a nifty Bryan poach suddenly brought up match point for the Americans. The threats seemed to come quick and fast for the Brits, and once more the risks paid off for the home team as they forced the decider.

It looked as though this match would be another long one, but at 7-7 a Murray volley found the net to give the Bryans a chance to serve it out, and they took it to set up a thrilling close.

Inglot just catching the edge of his racquet to a stinging return from the Bryan’s spelled danger as they took the mini-break for a 5-3 lead on their serve. A great stretch from Inglot pulled the Brits back on serve as the Brits clung on to bring up their first set point to force a decider. Inglot was poaching once more at the net to bring up their second set point but the pair could not find a way to close once more. A Bryan interception spun the advantage to the visitors, on their serve.

Inglot’s thundering return kept the Brits hanging in and Murray painting the lines brought up a third set point for the Brits, forcing the Americans into a decider.

Despite both Inglot and Murray requiring treatment during the decider, no quarter was being given now by either pairing as the fifth set wound its way on. With the threat of the first break points looming for the Americans on Murray’s serve at 7-7, a nicked edge saved the Brits albeit briefly and Murray’s missed half volley finding the net handing the Bryans a chance to serve for the match as they closed out the visitors’ first win.

The Bryans picked up their first five set win in the Davis Cup, 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 7-6(8), 9-7, previously having been 0-2, but then they had also never lost in the Davis Cup from two sets up.

They admitted how much it meant to get their first five set win in the Davis Cup, saying: “We lost a couple of heartbreakers in 2013 so if we got this opportunity again, we were actually telling each other let’s erase all that pain and this was a great way to do it, is to win an very emotional match, I thought we played a great match, those guys didn’t give us an inch all day. Jamie returned well and served well. They made a ton of first serves and cleaned up the volleys. We had to bring out best stuff to win.”

“We didn’t let up,” Mike Bryan chimed in. “They hit great returns. They were going for it the whole way. We had been playing well all week and we played a great match today and it came down to a few points. The margins were really small. We had a couple of looks in the fourth set. But, all credit to them. They hit some alley shots and lines and served big when they had to. It came down to the wire.”

“The biggest luxury is having these guys on the team,” said US Davis Cup Captain Jim Courier of the Bryan brothers. “They continue to come through for us.”

John Isner will face Andy Murray in the live fourth rubber in reverse singles on Sunday with Great Britain leading the tie 2-1.

Ros Satar is a British sports journalist and a writer at