February 28, 2017

Elina Svitolina Reaches Top Ten with Dubai Title Win

(February 25, 2017) DUBAI – Elina Svitolina won the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships title with 6-4 6-2 win over former No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki. This is the biggest title in the Ukrainian’s career, which will place her in the top ten on the WTA Tour when next rankings come out on Monday. She’ll be the first woman from her country to ever reach the top ten since the rankings were introduced in 1975. This is her sixth career title.

 

This was Svitolina’s second title in a month, who also won in Taipei, and a second final in two weeks for Wozniacki after she also finished as runner-up in Doha.

 

“I’ve dreamed for all my life to be in the Top 10,” said the 22-year-old Svitolina. “It’s a very amazing feeling and to do it by winning the tournament – I’m very excited for the season and very excited I could win this tournament.”

“It’s big relief that I could win this match, because I knew that if I gonna win this match, I’m gonna be top 10. There was extra pressure. When I was warming up, added even more pressure because they announce it. It didn’t help! I’m really happy the way I played the match. It was the way I was working on, and I’m really happy that I could play my game today.”

 

 

“She gets a lot of balls back. She mixed up the pace well. She did what she had to do today,” said Wozniacki. “I think I started off really well. I feel like I was inside the court a lot. You know, I was dictating and playing well. Then I kind of felt like I ran out of steam a little bit and she took advantage of that. She stepped it up a little bit.  She played really well, got a lot of balls back. She mixed up the pace when she needed to. She was serving better than me today. I really tried hard. Obviously it’s frustrating when you see what you want to do out there and you just can’t do it. You know, that’s the most frustrating feeling. I feel like if I had gotten, you know, maybe to 5-All or, you know, gotten a little bit closer in that first set, it could have been different.”

 

 

The tournament continues between 27th February and 4th March with the 25th staging of the ATP World Tour event which includes Wimbledon, Olympic and ATP World Tour Finals champion and world No. 1 Andy Murray, seven-time Dubai winner and Australian Open champion Roger Federer, defending Dubai champion Stan Wawrinka, two-time Dubai finalist Tomas Berdych and the Gael Monfils.

 

All photos by Nida Alibhai.

 

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Former Champ Wozniacki and Gold Medalist Puig Advance, While Vandeweghe Loses To Riske in Dubai

Caroline Wozniacki, courtesy of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships

(February 20, 2017) Former champion Caroline Wozniacki began the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships winning 6-2, 7-5 over teenager Daria Kasatkina. Although Wozniacki is just off reaching the final of Doha.

 

“Well, obviously seeing the draw, it’s like, well, could have had an easier first round,” said Wozniacki, who won the title in 2011 and has reached the semifinals in her last four apperances in Dubai. “She’s a good young player. She mixes up the pace a lot. She kind of tries to bring you out of your rhythm and she has great hands. I was really pleased with how I was able to just stay focused out there from the beginning. I didn’t really know how I was going to play to start off with. Generally, I was pleased with my game.”

 

Olympic gold medalist Monica Puig who is nursing a sore back, beat Yaroslava Shvedova 6-3, 4-6, 6-4. Puig had a medical time out after the second set.

 

“It’s just some lower back soreness,” Puig said. “I came from Doha two days ago, so the balls are a bit different. The court is definitely much different than in Doha. It’s just something that I have to go and get treatment with, but it’s really no big deal.”

 

Eleventh seed CoCo Vandeweghe lost 6-4, 6-4 to Fed cup teammate Alison Riske, and 13th seed Kiki Bertens was also upset, losing 6-7 (5), 6-3, 6-4 to Christine McHale. Peng Shuai took full advantage of her wild card, overwhelming Lesia Tsurenko 6-1 6-1 in just 55 minutes, and Elise Mertens became the third qualifier to reach the second round when she defeated Tsvetana Pironkova 6-3 6-2.

 

The top eight seeds received first round byes and will be in action from Tuesday. They include US Open champion and world number two Angelique Kerber, 2017 Brisbane and Doha champion Karolina Pliskova, WTA Finals winner Dominika Cibulkova, French Open champion Garbine Muguruza, and former Dubai winner Agnieszka Radwanska.

 

“There are so many top players competing on Tuesday that not all can be scheduled on Centre Court,” said tournament director Salah Tahlak. “That means spectators will be able to see stars such as Caroline Wozniacki, Olympic gold medal winner Monica Puig and Tunisian qualifier Ons Jabeur free of charge on the outside courts. As an added bonus, they will also be able to catch one of the greatest players of all time, Martina Hingis, in doubles action.”

DUBAI DUTY FREE TENNIS CHAMPIONSHIPS – DUBAI, UAE
$2,666,000
17-25 FEBRUARY, 2017

RESULTS – FEBRUARY 20, 2017
Women’s
Singles – First Round

[10] C. Wozniacki (DEN) d D. Kasatkina (RUS) 62 75
A. Riske (USA) d [11] C. Vandeweghe (USA) 64 64
C. Mchale (USA) d [13] K. Bertens (NED) 67(5) 63 64
C. Bellis (USA) d [17] Y. Putintseva (KAZ) 61 75
M. Puig (PUR) d Y. Shvedova (KAZ) 63 46 64
A. Konjuh (CRO) d S. Zhang (CHN) 60 61
M. Doi (JPN) d M. Brengle (USA) 62 67(4) 63
L. Davis (USA) d [LL] M. Minella (LUX) 26 62 61
K. Bondarenko (UKR) d [Q] A. Sabalenka (BLR) 46 64 63
[Q] E. Mertens (BEL) d T. Pironkova (BUL) 63 62
[WC] S. Peng (CHN) d L. Tsurenko (UKR) 61 61
K. Mladenovic (FRA) d K. Siniakova (CZE) 63 63

Women’s
Doubles – First Round

[6] A. Hlavackova (CZE) / S. Peng (CHN) d C. Liang (CHN) / Z. Yang (CHN) 75 62
V. Golubic (SUI) / Kr. Pliskova (CZE) d R. Atawo (USA) / Y. Xu (CHN) 64 62
A. Groenefeld (GER) / K. Peschke (CZE) d [WC] F. Al Nabhani (OMA) / M. Barthel (GER) 46 61 11-9
R. Olaru (ROU) / O. Savchuk (UKR) d N. Hibino (JPN) / A. Rosolska (POL) 46 76(4) 10-4
A. Klepac (SLO) / M. Martínez Sánchez (ESP) d J. Jankovic (SRB) / A. Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) 64 64

ORDER OF PLAY – TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 21, 2017
CENTRE COURT start 11:00 am
[3] D. Cibulkova (SVK) vs E. Makarova (RUS)
[Q] E. Mertens (BEL) vs [4] A. Radwanska (POL)
[5] G. Muguruza (ESP) vs K. Bondarenko (UKR)
K. Mladenovic (FRA) vs [2] Ka. Pliskova (CZE)

Not Before 7:00 pm
[1] A. Kerber (GER) vs [WC] M. Barthel (GER)
[Q] S. Zheng (CHN) vs [7] E. Svitolina (UKR)

COURT 1 start 12:00 noon
M. Puig (PUR) vs [15] C. Garcia (FRA)
[12] S. Stosur (AUS) vs A. Konjuh (CRO)

Not Before 4:00 pm
V. Golubic (SUI) vs [10] C. Wozniacki (DEN)
[9] B. Strycova (CZE) vs [WC] S. Peng (CHN)

COURT 2 start 12:00 noon
C. Bellis (USA) vs L. Siegemund (GER)
L. Davis (USA) vs Kr. Pliskova (CZE)

Not Before 4:00 pm
A. Sevastova (LAT) vs A. Riske (USA)

COURT 3 start 12:00 noon
M. Doi (JPN) vs [8] E. Vesnina (RUS)
[Q] O. Jabeur (TUN) vs Q. Wang (CHN)
C. Mchale (USA) vs N. Osaka (JPN)
[4] Y. Chan (TPE) / M. Hingis (SUI) vs A. Groenefeld (GER) / K. Peschke (CZE)

COURT 7 start 12:00 noon
[7] A. Spears (USA) / K. Srebotnik (SLO) vs L. Kichenok (UKR) / N. Kichenok (UKR)
D. Jurak (CRO) / A. Rodionova (AUS) vs G. Dabrowski (CAN) / J. Ostapenko (LAT)
A. Klepac (SLO) / M. Martínez Sánchez (ESP) vs [2] E. Makarova (RUS) / E. Vesnina (RUS)
E. Mertens (BEL) / A. Naydenova (BUL) vs [5] H. Chan (TPE) / Y. Shvedova (KAZ)

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Tsonga, Dolgopolov and Harrison Win ATP World Tour Titles

(February 19, 2017) Jo-Wilfried Tsonga won his 13th career title on the ATP World Tour on Sunday, coming back to stop third seed David Goffin of Belgium 4-6, 6-4, 6-1 in the final of the World Tennis Tournament in Rotterdam.

The sixth seed, now ranked at No. 14 is the first Frenchman since Michael Llodra in 2008 to win the title.

“I’m really happy. The last couple of months I put in a lot of effort to come back to this level,” Tsonga said. “It’s a huge reward for me and it gives me new expectations for the rest of the year.”

The victory for the 31-year-old 2008 Australian Open finalist Tsonga was his  401st match win.

David Goffin

“It was a great week in the end,” Goffin said. “There was a lot of emotion this week and I won a lot of matches. I was a bit tired today. I started the final really well, but in the end Jo played better than me, especially in the third set. Of course I’m disappointed, but I played some good tennis and will be in the Top 10 on Monday.”

The 26-year-old Goffin will be the first Belgian to move into the Top Ten when the ranking come out on Monday.

Alexandr Dolgopolov

Alexandr Dolgopolov of Ukraine upset top seed and world No. 5 Kei Nishikori of Japan 7-6(5), 6-4 to win the Argentina Open. It’s Dolgopolov’s third tournament win, with his last title victory coming at the 2012 Washington, DC event.

 

The Ukranian did not drop a set all week beating the second and fourth seeds on the way to the final. Dolgopolov came into Buenos Aires having lost 10 of his last 11 matches tour matches.
“I think you can call it a perfect week,’ said the winner. “I didn’t lose a set here and beat Kei for the first time. The fans were really supporting me and I felt very welcome here.”

Kei Nishikori

“I’m happy to be in the final,” said Nishikori. “Unfortunately I lost today, but Alex played better than me. I didn’t play badly, so hopefully I can keep this level going.”

 

Ryan Harrison

American Ryan Harrison won his first ATP World tour event by capturing the Memphis Open by beating Nikoloz Basilashvili of the Republic of Georgia 6-1, 6-4 in the final.

The 24-year-old is the second first-time winner this year on the men’s tennis tour, joining Sydney champion Gilles Muller.

Harrison won the event without losing a set.

“It’s always going to be special, but it’s even better here in front of a group of people that drove up from your hometown and have known you since you were five years old,” said the winner. “To do it in front of friends and family and people that saw the work I was putting in and my dedication, it definitely makes it more special.

“This was the first place I saw a professional tennis match, driving up from Shreveport. I will always remember Memphis. All those emotions were coming out there at the end. You have dreams and aspirations in life and for me it’s trying to be as great as I can in tennis. For me to come back here and win this title when I had thought it was impossible, it’s amazing.”

“In the first set, I could not find any rhythm, Nikoloz Basilashvili said. “I was not going for my shots and playing very defensive. Ryan was serving really well on the break points. I had a lot of chances in the second set, but the energy wasn’t great today. It hurts so much, but you have to learn from this for the next matches.”

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United States Moves into Fed Cup Semis with 4-0 Win Over Germany

 

(February 12, 2017) The United States moved into its first Fed cup semifinal since 2010 by besting Germany 4-0 at the Royal Lahaina Resort in Maui on Sunday.

Rain shortened play on Saturday with the U.S. up 1-0. Prior to play on Sunday, CoCo Vandeweghe won her second match when Julia Goerges retired with a right knee injury, with the American up 6-3, 3-1 when the match was called for rain.

Vandeweghe began the day coming back to beat Andrea Petkovic for the first time 3-6, 6-4, 6-0, capturing the last 10 games after taking a medical time out for heat illness. This clinched the tie for the U.S.

 

“I just think at 4-2 I had 15-40 and I was playing well.” Petkovic said. “I think she served really well in the decisive moments there. She had four first serves and then I played a bad game at 4-3.
 

“I think in tennis it can change so quickly.

 

“Then she was just serving really well in the third set. I never really got any rhythm to begin with. It was difficult for me to find my way or grind my way back into the match then in the third set.”

 

“It’s really a team effort,” Vandeweghe said of the win. “It’s a home tie for a reason. I think that was a big motivating factor for me to come out there and represent my country. I don’t really need much of a reason more to give everything I have out there on the court.

 

“That was kind of it.”

 

She gave credit to the Maui crowd – “ It’s no secret I was feeling like crap out there. I definitely needed a big pick-me-up. I definitely feed off the crowd and my teammates. This is one of the few times we do have teammates.

 

“I think that is definitely what pushed me through the hump for sure.”

 

Singles match D was skipped and in the doubles rubber, the Germany team had to retire, down 1-4 when Laura Siegemund injured her elbow.

 

The U.S. will host the Czech Republic the weekend of April 22-23 at a place to be announced.

 

U.S. Captain Kathy Rinaldi, making her debut as captain this weekend, spoke about the next tie: “Obviously Czech Republic is a very strong, tough team. They have many, many great players. One of our players knows one well.

 

“So, you know, yes. We’re going to enjoy this one. We’re going to look forward to playing them at home and have the home court advantage.

 

“Again, we’ll put together a strong team. I believe in all our American players. They’re doing great. They started off 2017 extremely strong.

 

“Yeah, we’re going to go for it.”

 

 

FINAL RESULTS

 

Saturday, 11:00 a.m. HST      

Singles A:

Alison Riske (USA) def. Andrea Petkovic (GER) 7-6(10), 6-2

Sunday, 10:00 a.m. HST  

Singles B:

Coco Vandeweghe (USA) def. Julia Goerges (GER) 6-3, 3-1, ret.

Singles C:

Coco Vandeweghe (USA) def. Andrea Petkovic (GER) 3-6, 6-4, 6-0

Singles D:

Alison Riske (USA) vs. Julia Goerges (GER) not played

Doubles:

Bethanie Mattek-Sands/Shelby Rogers (USA) def.

Laura Siegemund/Carina Witthoeft (GER)   4-1, ret.

 

 

WORLD GROUP FIRST ROUND RESULTS

United States def. Germany, 4-0

Czech Republic def. Spain, 3-2

Belarus def. Netherlands, 4-1

Switzerland def. France, 4-1

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Alexander Zverev Doubles Up in Montpellier Winning Singles and Doubles Titles

Alexander Zverev

 

(February 12, 2017) Nineteen-year-old Alexander Zverev defeated two-time defending champion Frenchmen Richard Gasquet 7-6(4), 6-3 to win the Open Sud de France in Mopntpellier on Sunday for his second career ATP World Tour title.

Zverev teamed up with his brother Mischa to also win the doubles title. The brothers Zverev defeated Fabrice Martin and Daniel Nestor 6-4, 6-7(3), 10-7 to win their first team title together.

“I’m very happy to win my first title of the year,” Alexander said. Obviously it was a very tough tournament, only one straight-sets match in the whole tournament, today, and it was not an easy one. I think it was a high-level match and I’m happy to get the win.”

 

“It’s great to win singles and doubles. I’m very happy with the way we played. We only dropped one set in the tournament. I think it was a very successful tournament for the Zverevs.”
Alexander becomes the first player to win singles and doubles titles at the same tournament since Lleyton Hewitt did it in Newport in 2014.

 

“It was an amazing week,” said older brother Mischa. “Congrats to my brother, winning singles and doubles for the first time. It’s always special playing doubles with him, especially playing well and winning. I’m really happy. I didn’t expect it.”

 

It’s also the first time a pair of brothers won a doubles title after one of them had won the singles title since Andy Murray did the double with Jamie Murray in Tokyo six years ago.

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Grigor Dimitrov Wins Home Title in Sofia

Grigor Dimitrov

(February 12, 2017) Hometown hero made good in Sofia Bulgaria on Sunday as third seed Grigor Dimitrov raised his 2017 record to 14-1 beating second seed David Goffin 7-5, 6-4 to raise the Sofia Open trophy for his sixth career ATP World Tour and second of the year. The 25-year-old won last month’s tennis tournament in Brisbane.

“This is my most prestigious title,” said the winner. “Winning it at home is a tremendous success for me. I will treasure this title for the rest of my life. It’s something amazing for me.”

“The crowd has been absolutely magnificent throughout the week. I’m more than thankful for their support.”

“Without you (the Bulgarian fans), I could never win this tournament,” Dimitrov said in an on-court interview.

“This title means a lot to me. Today, after the last point, I felt again like a kid playing in front of a home crowd.”

The Belgian Goffin, ranked No. 11 in the world, is now 0-3 against the Bulgarian.

Dimitrov has seen a resurgence this year, reaching the Australian Open semifinals and winning two tournaments this year. His ranking fell to No. 40 last summer. His ranking will jump up to No. 13 on Monday. His highest career ranking was No. 8.

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Victor Estrella Burgos Three-Peats at Ecuador Open

(February 12, 2017) Victor Estrella Burgos saved a match point to win his third straight Ecuador Open by beating the third seed, Italy’s Paolo Lorenzi 6-7(2), 7-5, 7-6(6) on the clay in Quito.

The Dominican tennis player, ranked at 156 in the world, becomes the lowest-ranked singles champion on the ATP World Tour since No. 192 Florian Mayer won in Halle last June.

Estrella Burgos knocked out top seed Ivo Karlovic and fourth seed Thomaz Bellucci to get to the final.

 

“It’s a great achievement for me to win three titles here,” Estrella Burgos said. “The recipe for my success here will be revealed when I retire [laughing], but for sure I’ll come back here next year. I’ll play in Quito every year until I retire.”

“Without any doubt, this final has been the toughest. Paolo doesn’t give away anything because he is a great fighter.”
“I love playing here and I’m sure I’ll be back next year,” said the losing finalist. I loved the crowd and how they welcomed and supported me during the whole week. I am thankful. I’m leaving with an ATP final and that’s very important to me.”

 

The 36-year-old Dominican becomes the first player in ATP World Tour history to win at least three titles at one event and none anywhere else. He also joins a select group of nine active players to have completed a “three-peat” at a tournament, which includes Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Davis Ferrer, Stan Wawrinka, Kei Nishikori, Milos Raonic, and John Isner.

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U.S. Leads Germany 1-0 in Fed Cup After Outdated Stanza of German Anthem Sung as Day One is Shortened by Rain

U.S. Leads Germany 1-0 in Fed Cup After Outdated Stanza of German Anthem Sung During Opening Ceremony

(February 11, 2017) During the opening ceremonies of day one of the Fed Cup quarterfinal tie between the United States and Germany on Saturday in Maui, Hawaii, a World War II era stanza of the German National anthem was sung.

The United States Tennis Association (USTA) issued an apology for the error in a statement:

“The USTA extends its sincerest apologies to the German Fed Cup team and all of its fans for the performance of an outdated national anthem prior to today’s Fed Cup competition,” the release said. “In no way did we mean any disrespect. This mistake will not occur again, and the correct anthem will be performed for the remainder of this first-round tie.”

 

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Germany’s Andrea Petkovic, who lost in the only completed match on Saturday was very upset about the anthem.

I thought it was the epitome of ignorance, and I never felt more disrespected in my whole life,” she said. “I’ve played Fed Cup for 13 years now, and it was the worst thing that has ever happened to me.”

Alison Riske, who defeated Petkovic 7-6(10), 6-2 also commented: “You know what, as it was happening obviously, we have no idea. News got around to us, and it’s extremely unfortunate. We have nothing but respect for the German team.”

“Obviously, that will not happen again.”

Alison Riske

 

For Riske, this was her first singles victory in Fed Cup.

“It mean(s) a lot when you play for your country. I’m always emotional when I talk about America. We’re lucky to be living here and to represent America. Any time we can, it’s a real honor.”

Petkovic was serving for the first set at 5-3, when Riske came back to force a tiebreak. At 3-3 in the tiebreak, play was suspended due to rain.

“I just tried to be the one that was more aggressive in the tiebreaker, because usually that person is the one who’s going to win the tiebreaker.

“Just tried to get out there after the rain break and go after it. Yeah, I did have four set points to win it. After that, I felt like I was in a better place mentally just to have one set under my belt.”

“I was fighting a lot of nerves,” she said after the match.” Like I said, we all want to win for our country, our team, our captain.”

“Considering all the conditions, it was a good quality match in the first set,” said the former top 10 Petkovic.” I just didn’t close it out. Yeah, maybe a little unlucky in few moments; maybe a little also few mistakes that shouldn’t have happened in the important moments.

“Then, as I said, she played fantastic second set.”

Coco Vandeweghe took a 6-3, 3-1 lead over Julia Goerges before rain halted play for the day.

The United States leads Germany 1-0 after the first day of play. They will resume play at 9:30 AM local time. Vandeweghe-Goerges will be completed, followed by reverse singles – Riske against Goerges,  Vandeweghe takes on Petkovic, and then the doubles match- Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Vandeweghe versus Laura Siegemumd and Carina Witthoeft.

The winner of this tie will take on the winner of the Czech Republic- Spain tie the weekend of April 22-23.

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ATP Tennis Results – Montpellier, Quito and Sofia

ATP World Tour 250 
Montpellier, France (+1 hour GMT)
6-12 February 2017 Surface: Indoor Hard
Open Sud de France
Montpellier, France

RESULTS – SATURDAY, 11 FEBRUARY 2017

Singles – Semi-finals
[4] [WC] A. Zverev (GER) d [2] J. Tsonga (FRA) 67(6) 62 64
[3] R. Gasquet (FRA) d B. Paire (FRA) 62 62

Doubles – Semi-finals
A. Zverev (GER) / M. Zverev (GER) d P. Raja (IND) / D. Sharan (IND) 62 76(1)

SCHEDULE – SUNDAY, 12 FEBRUARY 2017

COURT PATRICE DOMINGUEZ start 2:30 pm
[3] R. Gasquet (FRA) vs [4] [WC] A. Zverev (GER)
After Suitable Rest – A. Zverev (GER) / M. Zverev (GER) vs [2] F. Martin (FRA) / D. Nestor (CAN)

ATP World Tour 250 
Quito, Ecuador (-5 hours GMT)
6-12 February 2017 Surface: Clay
Ecuador Open
Quito, Ecuador

RESULTS – SATURDAY, 11 FEBRUARY 2017

Singles – Semi-finals
[3] P. Lorenzi (ITA) d [2] A. Ramos-Vinolas (ESP) 61 64
V. Estrella Burgos (DOM) d [4] T. Bellucci (BRA) 76(4) 76(3)

Doubles – Final
J. Cerretani (USA) / P. Oswald (AUT) d [2] J. Peralta (CHI) / H. Zeballos (ARG) 63 21 Retired

SCHEDULE – SUNDAY, 12 FEBRUARY 2017

STADIUM start 1:00 pm
[2] A. Ramos-Vinolas (ESP) 
vs [3] P. Lorenzi (ITA) 


ATP World Tour 250 
Sofia, Bulgaria (+2 hours GMT)
6-12 February 2017 Surface: Indoor Hard
Garanti Koza Sofia Open
Sofia, Bulgaria

RESULTS – SATURDAY, 11 FEBRUARY 2017

Singles – Semi-finals
[2] D. Goffin (BEL) d [4] R. Bautista Agut (ESP) 57 64 76(3)
[3] G. Dimitrov (BUL) d N. Basilashvili (GEO) 61 63

Doubles – Semi-finals
V. Troicki (SRB) / N. Zimonjic (SRB) d M. Fyrstenberg (POL) / M. Klizan (SVK) 36 76(5) 10-8

SCHEDULE – SUNDAY, 12 FEBRUARY 2017

CENTER COURT start 3:00 pm
V. Troicki (SRB) / N. Zimonjic (SRB) vs M. Elgin (RUS) / A. Kuznetsov (RUS)

Not Before 5:00 pm
[3] G. Dimitrov (BUL) vs [2] D. Goffin (BEL)

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United States Host Germany in Fed Cup First Round in Maui

Team USA, (Left to right) CoCo Vandeweghe, Bethanie Mattek-Sands, Alison Riske, Shelby Rogers, Captain Kathy Rinaldi at the 2017 Fed Cup tie between the United States and Germany in Maui, HI on February 7.

 

 

(February 10, 2017) The United States takes on Germany in the first round of World Group this weekend in Maui. Day one’s schedule includes two singles matches featuring each country’s No. 1 player against the other country’s No. 2 player. Sunday’s schedule features two “reverse singles” matches, where the No. 1 players square off and then the No. 2 players meet, followed by the doubles match.

 

The Royal Lahaina Resort hosts the tie which will lead off with world No. 40 Alison Riske taking on world No. 51 Andrea Petkovic.

 

Riske is playing in her first Fed Cup tie since 2015 and is competing in her second Fed Cup singles match, holding an 0-1 record. Riske peaked at a career-high No. 38 in the world this January after a strong start to 2017, highlighted by reaching her fifth career WTA singles final in Shenzhen and advancing to the third round of the Australian Open. Petkovic is competing in her 14th Fed Cup tie and holds a 12-6 Fed Cup singles record. She peaked at No. 9 in the world in October 2011 when she reached the quarterfinals of three different Grand Slams (Australian Open, French Open, and the US Open). She also advanced to the semifinals of the 2014 French Open. Riske and Petkovic have never faced each other in WTA competition.

 

The second match-up on Saturday will feature the United States’ top player Coco Vandeweghe against German Julia Goerges. Vandeweghe and Goerges have met three times on the WTA Tour, with Goerges holding a 2-1 record over Vandeweghe. Goerges won the last two meetings at the 2015 French Open (in three sets) and in Brussels in 2013. Vandeweghe defeated Goerges in Tokyo in 2010. Vandeweghe is ranked a career-high No. 20 in the world after advancing to the semifinals of the 2017 Australian Open—her career-best Grand Slam result. In Australia, she upset three seeded players, including then-world No. 1 Angelique Kerber, before falling to Venus Williams in the semifinals. Vandeweghe has played in four Fed Cup ties for the U.S., holding a 1-3 record in singles and a 3-0 record in doubles. Goerges is ranked No. 57 in the world and peaked at a career-high No. 15 in the world in April 2012. She holds two WTA titles and advanced to four additional finals. She is playing in her 14th Fed Cup tie and holds a 4-6 singles record in Fed Cup play.

 

Kathy Rinaldi will be making her debut as Fed Cup Captain in this match-up.Rinaldi was named the 19th U.S. Fed Cup Captain on December 8, succeeding Mary Joe Fernandez after eight years at the post. Rinaldi currently serves as Lead National Coach, Team USA – Pro Women for USTA Player Development, focused on helping American pros achieve Top-100 rankings. She has coached the U.S. to multiple junior international team competition titles and coached the U.S. women in the Pan-American Games in 2015. Rinaldi, 49, was ranked as high as No. 7 in the world in singles (May 1986) and No. 13 in the world in doubles (February 1993).

 

The winner of this matchup will advance to face either the Czech Republic or Spain in the World Group Semifinals, held April 22-23, for a chance to compete for the 2017 Fed Cup title. The losing nation will compete in the World Group Playoffs in April to remain in the World Group.

 

Order of Play

Saturday, 11:00 a.m. HST      

Singles A: Alison Riske (USA) vs. Andrea Petkovic (GER)

Singles B: Coco Vandeweghe (USA) vs. Julia Goerges (GER)

 

Sunday, 10:00 a.m. HST  

Singles C: Coco Vandeweghe (USA) vs. Andrea Petkovic (GER)

Singles D: Alison Riske (USA) vs. Julia Goerges (GER)

Doubles:Bethanie Mattek-Sands/Coco Vandeweghe (USA) vs. Laura Siegemund/Carina Witthoeft (GER)

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