2015/02/27

After Opening Win in Dubai, Federer Says He Plans to Skip Davis Cup in 2015

Photos by Nida Alibhai

(February 23, 2015) DUBAI, UAE – No. 2 Roger Federer told media in Dubai after his first round 6-3, 6-1 win over Mikhail Youzhny, that he will be taking a pass on playing Davis Cup this year.

Federer and teammate Stan Wawrinka led Switzerland to its first Davis Cup title in 2014. Switzerland will face Belgium in the first round of the World Group March 6-8.

Federer said that it wasn’t a difficult decision for him and noted that by finally winning it he can do what he pleases.

“It’s been a big burden for me throughout my career and one of the things that have caused more difficulties in my life than many other things, I must say,” Federer said to press.

“I always feel there is so much guilt put on you from the federation or from the ITF more so than anybody else. So I’m happy I was able to finally tick that off and do it altogether.”

Federer improved his record against Youzhny to 16-0 in his first round 56 minute win.

Fifth seed and world No. 14 Ernests Gulbis is still winless in 2015. He fell to Denis Istomin 7-5, 6-2.

RESULTS – MONDAY, 23 FEBRUARY 2015

Singles – First Round
[2] R. Federer (SUI) d M. Youzhny (RUS) 63 61
D. Istomin (UZB) d [5] E. Gulbis (LAT) 75 62
A. Golubev (KAZ) d [Q] F. Martin (FRA) 75 64
J. Sousa (POR) d [WC] J. McGee (IRL) 61 62
R. Gasquet (FRA) d A. Seppi (ITA) 64 67(1) 64

Doubles – First Round

[4] R. Bopanna (IND) / D. Nestor (CAN) d [WC] L. Djere (SRB) / N. Djokovic (SRB) 62 75
D. Inglot (GBR) / F. Mergea (ROU) d F. Lopez (ESP) / F. Verdasco (ESP) 76(3) 76(5)
SCHEDULE – TUESDAY, 24 FEBRUARY 2015

CENTRE COURT start 2:00 pm
[4] T. Berdych (CZE) vs J. Chardy (FRA)
Not Before 4:00 pm
G. Muller (LUX) vs [3] A. Murray (GBR)
Not Before 7:00 pm
[1] N. Djokovic (SRB) vs V. Pospisil (CAN)
F. Verdasco (ESP) vs G. Garcia-Lopez (ESP)

COURT 1 start 2:00 pm

S. Stakhovsky (UKR) vs L. Rosol (CZE)
[Q] J. Ward (GBR) vs [6] F. Lopez (ESP)
Not Before 5:00 pm
Possible Court Change – [WC] R. Federer (SUI) / M. Lammer (SUI) vs [2] J. Rojer (NED) / H. Tecau (ROU)
R. Lindstedt (SWE) / M. Matkowski (POL) vs [LL] A. Golubev (KAZ) / D. Istomin (UZB)

Share

Draws Announced For 12-City PowerShares Series Tennis Events In 2015

AgassiSamprasPostMatch

LOS ANGELES, Feb. 23, 2015 – InsideOut Sports & Entertainment today announced
the draws for its 2015 PowerShares Series champions tennis circuit. The
PowerShares Series, the North American tennis circuit for champion tennis
players, will visit 12 cities in 2015 starting March 24 in Salt Lake City, Utah
and concluding Saturday, May 2 in Vancouver, Canada. Players competing on the
2015 PowerShares Series are John McEnroe, Pete Sampras, Andre Agassi, Jim
Courier, Andy Roddick, Michael Chang, James Blake and Mark Philippoussis.

Each one-night event will feature two one-set semifinal matches, followed by a
one–set championship match. For more information: www.PowerSharesSeries.com.

The full 2015 PowerShares Series schedule with event match-ups are as follows:

Tuesday, March 24: Salt Lake City, Utah (Huntsman Center) “Champions Shootout”
James Blake vs. Mark Philippoussis, Andre Agassi vs. Jim Courier

Wednesday, March 25: Los Angeles, Calif., (Galen Center at USC) “SoCal Honda
Dealers Helpful Cup”
Pete Sampras vs. Jim Courier, Andy Roddick vs. James Blake

Wednesday, April 1: Lincoln, Neb., (Pinnacle Bank Arena at Univ. of Nebraska)
“Champions Cup Presented by Woods Park Tennis”
Andy Roddick vs. Jim Courier, James Blake vs. John McEnroe

Thursday, April 2: Chicago, Ill. (Sears Centre) “PowerShares QQQ Challenge”
John McEnroe vs. Jim Courier, Andy Roddick vs. James Blake

Thursday, April 16: Austin, Texas (Cedar Park Center) “Champions Shootout”
John McEnroe vs. Jim Courier, Andy Roddick vs. James Blake

Friday, April 17: Little Rock, Ark. (Jack Stephens Center at the UALR)
“Champions Cup”
Andy Roddick vs. Jim Courier, John McEnroe vs. Mark Philippoussis

Saturday, April 18: Dallas, Texas (Moody Coliseum at SMU) “Champions Showdown”
John McEnroe vs. Jim Courier, Andy Roddick vs. Mark Philippoussis

Wednesday, April 22: Boston, Mass. (Agganis Arena at Boston University)
“Champions Cup”
John McEnroe vs. Jim Courier, Andy Roddick vs. James Blake

Thursday, April 23: Richmond, Va., (Siegel Center at VCU) “Champions Challenge”
Jim Courier vs. Andy Roddick, John McEnroe vs. James Blake

Wednesday, April 29: Minneapolis, Minn. (Target Center) “Champions Shootout”
John McEnroe vs. James Blake, Andy Roddick vs. Michael Chang

Thursday, April 30: Cincinnati, Ohio (Cintas Center at Xavier) “Champions
Showdown”
Andy Roddick vs. James Blake, John McEnroe vs. Michael Chang

Saturday, May 2: Vancouver, Canada (Doug Mitchell Thunderbird Sports Centre at
UBC) “Champions Showdown”
Michael Chang vs. Mark Philippoussis, Pete Sampras vs. John McEnroe

In 2014, McEnroe won the points title for the first time in the nine-year
history of Champions Series tennis by winning events in Kansas City,
Indianapolis, Nashville and Charlotte. McEnroe was followed in the points
standings by Blake in second place and Roddick in third place.

Share

Thirty-Somethings David Ferrer, Ivo Karlovic, and Gilles Simon Claim ATP Titles This Week

Ferrer wins Qatar

(February 22, 2015) It’s been said in the past few years that 30 has become the new 20 on the ATP tour with 20 of the top 100 players at least 30-years-old or older. This was very evident as all this week’s winners on the ATP World Tour were at least 30-years-old – Gilles Simon (30), Ivo Karlovic (35) and David Ferrer (32).

Gilles Simon

Gilles Simon

Thirty-year old Frenchman Gilles Simon won his 12 career title on Sunday, defeating countryman Gael Monfils 6-4, 1-6, 7-6 (4) to win the Open 13 tournament in Marseille.

Simon is now No. 2 on the list for most titles won by a Frenchman in the Open Era, behind French Open winner Yannick Noah, who won 23 titles in his career.

“It was a great week, but a tough one physically,” Simon said. “I left a lot of energy against [Borna] Coric (in the second round) and then it was hard to recover from this one. I’m happy I won here since I won my first tournament in Marseille. I hope it won’t be the last one.” Simon spent almost nine hours on the court during the tournament.

Monfils is now 5-17 in ATP finals “I’m disappointed,” said Monfils. “It was a great match and we both played really well.”

Ivo Karlovic

In Delray Beach, just six days shy of his 36th birthday, Ivo Karlovic beat Donald Young 6-3, 6-3 to win his sixth ATP World Tour title and become the oldest ATP singles champion since Jimmy Connors won the Tel Aviv tournament back in 1989 at the age of 37.

The almost seven-foot Croatian Karlovic did not lose his serve throughout the tournament.

“It is unbelievable.” said Karlovic. “It was really satisfying also for me to do this at my age, and it gives me a boost of confidence when I go into the other tournaments at Indian Wells and Miami.”

David Ferrer claimed his second tournament trophy for 2015 winning the Rio Open for his 23rd career ATP World Tour title. Ferrer dismissed Fabio Fognini on Sunday 6-2, 6-3 in 83-minutes. Fognini upset Ferrer’s Spanish countryman, top seed Rafael Nadal in the semifinals on Saturday night.

Ferrer kept his record perfect against Fognini at 8-0 with the win.

“It was my best match of the tournament and I’m very happy having won two tournaments this season,” said Ferrer.

“I’m really happy. It’s my 23rd tournament win and I never won here before in Rio. I’m very happy for that. I had the chance to be in the Carnaval this week and all the facilities are good. This week is very special. I have a lot of confidence with my game. I won two tournaments this year. It’s very important for me being with the best players in the world.”

“When you lose in a final, you’re always disappointed,” said Fognini. “It’s a big week for me. Yesterday I beat Rafa. It’s a big tournament and I’m happy because I put in a lot of work mentally and physically. To be 100 per cent against David, it is difficult.”

Share

Nadal Knocked Out of Rio by Fognini

Nadal at changeover

(February 21, 2015) Fabio Fognini stunned world No. 3 Rafael Nadal in the semifinals of the Rio Open on 1-6, 6-2, 7-5. The fourth seeded Italian will face David Ferrer in the final on Sunday. Ferrer beat Andreas Haider-Maurer in the other semifinal 7-5, 6-1.

Fognini snapped Nadal’s 52-match win streak in tournament semifinals on clay with the win.

“Everybody knows he is the best on this surface,” Fognini said. “I don’t have words to describe this moment. I am super happy. It’s the best match I have won so far in my career.”

Near the end of the match, Nadal appeared to be cramping. He is scheduled to participate in next week’s tournament in Buenos Aires.

Nadal said he was happy with the way he played in the first set, but he “got tired too early.” The Spaniard was on the court until 3:18 on Saturday morning before defeating Pablo Cuevas, returning to the court less than 17 hours later.

Fognini will be attempting to win his fourth ATP title on Sunday, while Ferrer is going after tournament trophy number 23.

The loss for Nadal means his ranking will fall to No. 4 behind Andy Murray when next week’s rankings are released.

Rio Open

RESULTS – SATURDAY, 21 FEBRUARY 2015

Singles – Semi-finals
[4] F. Fognini (ITA) d [1] R. Nadal (ESP) 16 62 75
[2] D. Ferrer (ESP) d A. Haider-Maurer (AUT) 75 61

Doubles – Final
M Klizan (SVK) / P Oswald (AUT) d P Andujar (ESP) / O Marach (AUT) 76(3) 64
SCHEDULE – SUNDAY, 22 FEBRUARY 2015

CENTRE COURT start 3:00 pm
WTA – [1] S. Errani (ITA) vs [6] A. Schmiedlova (SVK)
Not Before 6:00 pm
ATP – [4] F. Fognini (ITA) vs [2] D. Ferrer (ESP)

 

Delray Beach

RESULTS – SATURDAY, 21 FEBRUARY 2015

Singles – Semi-finals
[4] I. Karlovic (CRO) d [5] A. Mannarino (FRA) 63 64
D. Young (USA) d B. Tomic (AUS) 46 64 62

Doubles – Semi-finals
[1] B Bryan (USA) / M Bryan (USA) d E Butorac (USA) / R Ram (USA) 46 63 10-4
[2] R Klaasen (RSA) / L Paes (IND) d B Tomic (AUS) / V Troicki (SRB) 64 64
SCHEDULE – SUNDAY, 22 FEBRUARY 2015

STADIUM start 1:00 pm
[1] B Bryan (USA) / M Bryan (USA) vs [2] R Klaasen (RSA) / L Paes (IND)
3:00 pm
[4] I. Karlovic (CRO) vs D. Young (USA)

 

Marseilles

RESULTS – SATURDAY, 21 FEBRUARY 2015

Singles – Semi-finals
[7] [WC] G. Monfils (FRA) d [4] R. Bautista Agut (ESP) 64 62
[5] G. Simon (FRA) d S. Stakhovsky (UKR) 36 63 62

Doubles – Semi-finals
C Fleming (GBR) / J Marray (GBR) d L Rosol (CZE) / D Thiem (AUT) 46 63 10-4

SCHEDULE – SUNDAY, 22 FEBRUARY 2015

COURT CENTRAL start 1:00 pm
C Fleming (GBR) / J Marray (GBR) vs [2] M Draganja (CRO) / H Kontinen (FIN)

Not Before 3:00 pm
[7] [WC] G. Monfils (FRA) vs [5] G. Simon (FRA)

Share

Simona Halep Wins Dubai Tennis Championships for Second Title of the Year

Photos by Nida Alibhai

(February 21, 2015) DUBAI, UAE – Simona Halep defeated Karolina Pliskova 6-4, 7-6(4) on Saturday to win the Dubai Tennis Championships for her 10th WTA title of her career, second title of 2015 and her second Premier 5-level victory. Halep won a title in Shenzen, China in January.

Halep won the first set in 41 minutes breaking the Czech’s serve in the seventh game.

Pliskova got off to a 2-0 start in the second set, but Halep rebounded to get back on serve, then get ahead to serve for the match at 5-4. Halep failed to close out the match serving at both 5-4 and 6-5, reaching match points in both service games. The last six games in the set were breaks of serve.

“I was trying to turn it around, but even if I won the second set, I don’t know if I would have won the whole match,” Pliskova said. “It would still have been hard because she doesn’t give up on any point. She runs really, really well, and it’s hard to kill the ball against her. She really gets everything back.”

“She played very well, it’s hard to explain how I feel, it’s a big title for me,” Halep said on court.

“I knew she had a big serve, I believe I have a good return. I stayed focused on every point.”

Halep won the last four points of the tiebreak to claim the match.

“I did two double faults at 6‑5,” said Halep. “I cannot imagine how I could serve with 100 kilometers just to put the ball on court but I couldn’t. But in tiebreak I was strong and I stayed very focused and I was fighting till the end. That was the most important, I think.”

“She played very well….it’s hard to explain how I feel, it’s a big title for me,” Halep said.

“I’m very happy now, and I cannot explain words how I feel,” said Halep. “It’s just an amazing title for me. It’s very important for my career. I’m really happy, and I just want to enjoy this moment.”

“Of course I lost so I’m not really happy, but obviously I’m happy for the week and for the last two or three weeks,” said Pliskova.

For the 23-year-old Romanian, the win moves her ranking back up to No. 3 in the world. Pliskova is expected to rise to No. 12 when the rankings are released on Monday.

“At the beginning of the tournament some people asked me if I felt pressure because I was the No.1 seed,” Halep said. “I said no, because I wasn’t thinking about it, and I just wanted to go on court and play match by match, because everyone would play really well here. And I played with big players like Makarova, Pliskova, Wozniacki – she was No.1 two years. So it’s honestly just an amazing victory for me.”

The doubles title went to Timea Babos and Kristina Mladenovic, who beat Garbine Muguruza and Carla Suarez Navarro 6-3, 6-2. It was their fourth final together, and their first title.

Share

Halep and Pliskova Reach Dubai Final

Photos by Nida Alibhai

(February 20, 2015) DUBAI, UAE – Top seed Simona Halep will play Karolina Pliskova in the final of the Dubai Tennis Championships on Saturday.

Halep rebounded after dropping the opening set to defeat Caroline Wozniacki 2-6, 6-1, 6-1, while Pliskova came through an almost three hour match with a 6-4, 5-7, 7-5 win over Garbine Muguruza.

“I was trying everything,” Wozniacki said of the match. “I was just making so many errors, and I don’t really know where they came from. I think I was just tired. You know, it’s been a long week for me.””

“I started the match with a bad tactic,” Halep said. “I just wanted to hit every ball, and I did many mistakes. I couldn’t find the rhythm. So in the second set I said that I have to change it and just to play with a good length and to open the court more. I didn’t want to force too much like in first set. That worked very well for me.”

 

“It was a really long match,” said Pliskova. “There was so many close points and close games. I was losing. She had some break points in the third set, as well. There’s just few points which is deciding.”

“I think the key was her serve,” said Muguruza. “She served so good. I couldn’t break her serve. I mean, obviously when you cannot break the other one’s serve you feel a lot of pressure with your serve. But it was a very good week. I won incredible matches.”

Halep is looking to win her second title of the year, the Romanian won in Shenzen in January. Pliskova will be playing in her second final of the year, losing in the final at Sydney.

 

DUBAI DUTY FREE TENNIS CHAMPIONSHIPS – DUBAI, UAE
$ 2,513,000.00
15-21 FEBRUARY 2015

RESULTS – FEBRUARY 20, 2015
Women’s
Singles – Semifinals

[1] S. Halep (ROU) d [3] C. Wozniacki (DEN) 26 61 61
[17] Ka. Pliskova (CZE) d G. Muguruza (ESP) 64 57 75

Women’s
Doubles – Semifinals

[6] G Muguruza (ESP) / C Suárez Navarro (ESP) d A Kudryavtseva (RUS) / A Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) 62 63
[8] T Babos (HUN) / K Mladenovic (FRA) d [7] C Garcia (FRA) / K Srebotnik (SLO) 36 61 10-5

ORDER OF PLAY – SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 21, 2015
CENTRE COURT start 5:00 pm
DOUBLES FINAL – [6] G Muguruza (ESP) / C Suárez Navarro (ESP) vs [8] T Babos (HUN) / K Mladenovic (FRA)

Not Before 7:00 pm
SINGLES FINAL – [1] S. Halep (ROU) vs [17] Ka. Pliskova (CZE)

 

Share

Nadal Reaches Rio Quarters

Nadal 2 16 2013 Brasil Open William Lucas Inovafoto

(February 19, 2015) Rafael Nadal has reached the quarterfinals of the Rio Open with a 7-5, 6-3 victory on Thursday night over fellow Spaniard Pablo Carreno Busta.

Naal was tested in the first set, needing five set points to claim it. In the second, Nadal broke serve in the eighth game and closed out the match on his serve in the ninth.

“Tough conditions, a difficult, young opponent and I’m just content to be in the quarterfinals,” Nadal said after the match. “For me every victory is important, and even more so on clay.”

Next up for Nadal will be No. 6 seed Pablo Cuevas of Uruguay on Friday.

 

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (-3 hours GMT)
16-22 February 2015   Surface: Clay

Rio Open presented by Claro

RESULTS – THURSDAY, 19 FEBRUARY 2015

Singles – Second Round
[1] R. Nadal (ESP) d P. Carreno Busta (ESP) 75 63
[4] F. Fognini (ITA) d P. Andujar (ESP) 63 62
[6] P. Cuevas (URU) d A. Montanes (ESP) 62 62
F. Delbonis (ARG) d [8] M. Klizan (SVK) 62 61

Doubles – Quarter-Finals
[1] A Peya (AUT) / B Soares (BRA) d P Lorenzi (ITA) / D Schwartzman (ARG) 75 61
[2] J Cabal (COL) / R Farah (COL) d C Berlocq (ARG) / L Mayer (ARG) 61 36 10-7
M Klizan (SVK) / P Oswald (AUT) d [4] P Cuevas (URU) / D Marrero (ESP) w/o (Marrero – illness)
P Andujar (ESP) / O Marach (AUT) d [WC] A Sa (BRA) / J Souza (BRA) 63 62
SCHEDULE – FRIDAY, 20 FEBRUARY 2015

CENTRE COURT start 1:00 pm
WTA – [1] S. Errani (ITA) vs [WC] B. Haddad Maia (BRA)
Not Before 3:30 pm
ATP – J. Monaco (ARG) vs [2] D. Ferrer (ESP)
ATP – [WC] J. Souza (BRA) vs A. Haider-Maurer (AUT)
ATP – [4] F. Fognini (ITA) vs F. Delbonis (ARG)
ATP – [1] R. Nadal (ESP) vs [6] P. Cuevas (URU)

COURT 1 start 1:00 pm
WTA – J. Glushko (ISR) vs [2] I. Begu (ROU)
WTA – [6] A. Schmiedlova (SVK) vs [Q] V. Cepede Royg (PAR)
Not Before 3:30 pm
WTA – After suitable rest – Y Bonaventure (BEL) / R Peterson (SWE) vs B Haddad Maia (BRA) / T Pereira (BRA)
ATP – M Klizan (SVK) / P Oswald (AUT) vs [2] J Cabal (COL) / R Farah (COL)
ATP – [1] A Peya (AUT) / B Soares (BRA) vs P Andujar (ESP) / O Marach (AUT)

COURT 3 start 1:00 pm
WTA – D. Pfizenmaier (GER) vs [5] J. Larsson (SWE)
Not Before 3:30 pm
WTA – After suitable rest – [1] I Begu (ROU) / M Irigoyen (ARG) vs C Hsu (TPE) / E Kostova (BUL)

 

No. 1 seed Milos Raonic of Canada was knocked out of the Open 13 in his opening match on Thursday falling 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 (3) to Simone Bolelli, For the Italian Bolelli, he survived 21 aces against him for the biggest win of his career, his first top ten win in 35 attempts.

ATP World Tour 250  €565,735 (€632,840 Total Financial Commitment)
Marseille, France (+1 hour GMT)
16-22 February 2015   Surface: Indoor Hard

Open 13

Marseille, France

RESULTS – THURSDAY, 19 FEBRUARY 2015

Singles – Second Round
S. Bolelli (ITA) d [1] M. Raonic (CAN) 64 36 76(3)
[2] S. Wawrinka (SUI) d [WC] B. Paire (FRA) 62 63
J. Chardy (FRA) d [3] E. Gulbis (LAT) 63 64
[5] G. Simon (FRA) d [WC] B. Coric (CRO) 62 36 63
D. Thiem (AUT) d [6] D. Goffin (BEL) 51 ret. (back pain)

Doubles – Quarter-Finals
[2] M Draganja (CRO) / H Kontinen (FIN) d M Emmrich (GER) / A Siljestrom (SWE) 67(4) 63 10-7
L Rosol (CZE) / D Thiem (AUT) d A Golubev (KAZ) / D Istomin (UZB) 46 64 10-8
R Junaid (AUS) / A Shamasdin (CAN) d K Skupski (GBR) / N Skupski (GBR) 64 76(7)

SCHEDULE – FRIDAY, 20 FEBRUARY 2015

COURT CENTRAL start 12:00 noon
[1] P Herbert (FRA) / N Mahut (FRA) vs C Fleming (GBR) / J Marray (GBR)
Not Before 2:00 pm
[4] R. Bautista Agut (ESP) vs D. Thiem (AUT)
S. Bolelli (ITA) vs [7] [WC] G. Monfils (FRA)
Not Before 6:30 pm
S. Stakhovsky (UKR) vs [2] S. Wawrinka (SUI)
Not Before 8:30 pm
[5] G. Simon (FRA) vs J. Chardy (FRA)

COURT 1 start 12:00 noon
R Junaid (AUS) / A Shamasdin (CAN) vs [2] M Draganja (CRO) / H Kontinen (FIN)

 

ATP World Tour 250  €565,735 (€632,840 Total Financial Commitment)
Delray Beach, U.S.A. (-5 hours GMT)
16-22 February 2015   Surface: Hard

Delray Beach presented by the Venetian Las Vegas

RESULTS – THURSDAY, 19 FEBRUARY 2015

Singles – Second Round
[3] A. Dolgopolov (UKR) d T. Smyczek (USA) 62 64
B. Tomic (AUS) d [8] V. Troicki (SRB) 63 67(2) 64
D. Young (USA) d A. Gonzalez (COL) 63 62
[Q] Y. Nishioka (JPN) d M. Matosevic (AUS) 61 63

Doubles – Quarter-finals
[2] R Klaasen (RSA) / L Paes (IND) d T Huey (PHI) / S Lipsky (USA) 63 64
E Butorac (USA) / R Ram (USA) d [3] I Dodig (CRO) / M Mirnyi (BLR) 64 57 10-4
SCHEDULE – FRIDAY, 20 FEBRUARY 2015

STADIUM start 11:00 am
D. Young (USA) vs [3] A. Dolgopolov (UKR)
Not Before 12:30 pm
[1] B Bryan (USA) / M Bryan (USA) vs J Smith (AUS) / M Venus (NZL)
Not Before 2:30 pm
B. Tomic (AUS) vs [Q] Y. Nishioka (JPN)
6:00 pm
Y. Lu (TPE) vs [5] A. Mannarino (FRA)
Not Before 8:00 pm
[4] I. Karlovic (CRO) vs [7] S. Johnson (USA)

Share

Halep and Wozniacki Reach Dubai Semifinals

Photos by Nida Alibhai

(February 19, 2015) Dubai UAETop seeded Simona Halep will play third seeded Caroline Wozniacki, and 17th seed Karolina Pliskova will play unseeded Garbine Muguruza in the semifinals of the Dubai Tennis Championships on Friday.

 

It took Halep two hours and seven minutes to beat Etkaterina Makarova 6-3, 1-6, 7-5 and avenge her defeat by in the quarter-finals of the Australian Open last month. Wozniacki withstood a competitive first set to beat Flavia Pennetta 7-5, 6-0.

 

Pliskova needed two hours 26 minutes to rally past Lucie Safarova 3-6, 7-6(5), 6-1 and Muguruza took two hours 19 minutes to overcome Carla Suarez Navarro 6-7(4), 6-3, 6-3.

 

Halep failed to serve out the match at 5-3 and then needing five match points to clinch the win.

 

“I didn’t believe in my serve at that moment, and I just tried to finish very quickly and wasn’t good idea,” said Halep. “I was very nervous, and I wanted just to hit winners. It’s not possible at this level, and she’s a good player. I’m really happy that I could finish in the right way and to win, because it was a tough match.”

 

Wozniacki has been struggling with a sore throat this week.

 

“I knew that when I’m out there I need to focus 100% on each point,” said Wozniacki. “I can’t just give loose ones away, because that means longer time on court which means I have less of a chance of winning, so especially like now. I think that’s definitely helped me focus.”

 

Pliskova’s win was her second in two weeks over Safarova after she also won their quarter-final match in Antwerp, but she had to work hard to gain an advantage.

 

“I would say that she deserved to win as well. I’m a little bit sorry for her,” said Pliskova, “I called coach and he really helped me, and that’s probably the main thing why I won the second set, and then why I won the third set as well.”

 

Muguruza beat her friend, doubles partner and fellow Spaniard Suarez Navarro.

 

“I was sad because I lost the first set, but I said, ‘If I want to win this match I cannot play bad the second set’,” said Muguruza. “My only chance is to win the second set and try to have chances to win the match. So I said, Okay, the second set I’m going to give it all, and if I win I will have options to win the match.”

 

DUBAI DUTY FREE TENNIS CHAMPIONSHIPS – DUBAI, UAE
$ 2,513,000.00
15-21 FEBRUARY 2015

RESULTS – FEBRUARY 19, 2015
Women’s
Singles – Quarterfinals

[1] S. Halep (ROU) d [6] E. Makarova (RUS) 63 16 75
[3] C. Wozniacki (DEN) d [10] [WC] F. Pennetta (ITA) 75 60
[17] K. Pliskova (CZE) d [11] L. Safarova (CZE) 36 76(5) 61
G. Muguruza (ESP) d [13] C. Suárez Navarro (ESP) 67(4) 63 63

Women’s
Doubles – Quarterfinals

[7] C Garcia (FRA) / K Srebotnik (SLO) d [2] E Makarova (RUS) / E Vesnina (RUS) 75 62
[6] G Muguruza (ESP) / C Suárez Navarro (ESP) d A Rodionova (AUS) / A Rodionova (AUS) 75 64
[8] T Babos (HUN) / K Mladenovic (FRA) d M Niculescu (ROU) / A Panova (RUS) 76(6) 64
A Kudryavtseva (RUS) / A Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) d J Goerges (GER) / A Groenefeld (GER) 75 76(1)

ORDER OF PLAY – FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 20, 2015
CENTRE COURT start 2:00 pm
[8] T Babos (HUN) / K Mladenovic (FRA) vs [7] C Garcia (FRA) / K Srebotnik (SLO)

Not Before 5:00 pm
[17] K. Pliskova (CZE) vs G. Muguruza (ESP)

Not Before 7:00 pm
[1] S. Halep (ROU) vs [3] C. Wozniacki (DEN)
A Kudryavtseva (RUS) / A Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) vs [6] G Muguruza (ESP) / C Suárez Navarro (ESP)

Share

Venus Williams, Kvitova, Ivanovic and Radwanska suffer early exits in Dubai

Photos by Nida Alibhai

(February 18, 2015) DUBAI, UAE – Wednesday marked a day of upsets at the Dubai Tennis Championships. Defending champion Venus Williams was beaten 6-4, 6-2 by Lucie Safarova in the third round along with No. 2 Petra Kvitova, fourth seed Ana Ivanovic, fifth seed Agnieszka Radwanska and seventh seed Angelique Kerber.

 

For three-time champion Williams, it snapped her 16-match win-streak, her first loss in Dubai since 2005.

 

“I think she played awesome,” said Williams of her conqueror Safarova. “There were a couple of games there that I didn’t even get my racquet on the ball. What can I say to that? I don’t think I played badly, but I couldn’t afford to make any errors today. The errors that I made were really costly, so, you know, credit to her. I wish her the best of luck the rest of the tournament.”

 

“I was firing the ball, serving really well,” Safarova said. “I put the pressure right away from the first point. My lefty serve into her body and mixing the lefty serve with the really flat and fast serves, that seems give her a little trouble.”

 

Second seed Kvitova fell to Carla Suarez Navarro 6-3, 4-6, 6-3.

 

“Yeah, everybody can beat everyone in the top,” The Czech said. “And, yeah, maybe it’s nice for the fans that they can see something new and some surprises, but not every time it’s nice for us.”

Radwanska was upset 6-4, 6-2 by Garbine Muguruza after arriving in Dubai struggling with her health.

 

“I think when you’re not playing your best tennis then it’s hard to compete with those kind of players,” said Radwanska. “I think I didn’t serve enough, you know, to win that. I think that was really important part in that match.”

 

Muguruza believes there is always a chance to upset the top players if you work hard and keep your concentration.

 

“I think that nowadays there are so many girls that play so good that the difference between the top players and the other ones are really small,” she said. “So I think that you have a chance if you work and play and be concentrate and do your game, I think you can beat them.”

 

The day was not all about upsets as top seed Simona Halep beat Tsvetana Pironkova 6-4, 6-3, third seed Caroline Wozniacki overcame 2014 Dubai finalist Alize Cornet 6-4, 6-0 and Ekaterina Makarova also advanced, beating Zarina Diyas 6-3, 6-4.

DUBAI DUTY FREE TENNIS CHAMPIONSHIPS – DUBAI, UAE
$ 2,513,000
15-21 FEBRUARY 2015

RESULTS – FEBRUARY 18, 2015
Singles – Third Round
[1] S. Halep (ROU) d T. Pironkova (BUL) 64 63
[13] C. Suárez Navarro (ESP) d [2] P. Kvitova (CZE) 63 46 63
[3] C. Wozniacki (DEN) d [15] A. Cornet (FRA) 64 60
[17] K. Pliskova (CZE) d [4] A. Ivanovic (SRB) 62 46 64
G. Muguruza (ESP) d [5] A. Radwanska (POL) 64 62
[6] E. Makarova (RUS) d Z. Diyas (KAZ) 63 64
[10] [WC] F. Pennetta (ITA) d [7] A. Kerber (GER) 62 36 61
[11] L. Safarova (CZE) d [8] V. Williams (USA) 64 62

Doubles – Second Round
A Kudryavtseva (RUS) / A Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) d [1] S Hsieh (TPE) / S Mirza (IND) 64 46 10-7
[2] E Makarova (RUS) / E Vesnina (RUS) d K Koukalova (CZE) / K Siniakova (CZE) 76(0) 64
A Rodionova (AUS) / A Rodionova (AUS) d [3] M Hingis (SUI) / F Pennetta (ITA) 63 76(2)
M Niculescu (ROU) / A Panova (RUS) d [4] S Peng (CHN) / K Peschke (CZE) 76(8) 76(7)
[6] G Muguruza (ESP) / C Suárez Navarro (ESP) d J Jankovic (SRB) / A Parra Santonja (ESP) 64 64
[7] C Garcia (FRA) / K Srebotnik (SLO) d M Erakovic (NZL) / H Watson (GBR) 63 64
[8] T Babos (HUN) / K Mladenovic (FRA) d [WC] F Al Nabhani (OMA) / M Barthel (GER) 61 62
J Goerges (GER) / A Groenefeld (GER) d C Dellacqua (AUS) / S Stosur (AUS) 64 62

ORDER OF PLAY – THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 19, 2015
CENTRE COURT start 2:00 pm
[11] L. Safarova (CZE) vs [17] K. Pliskova (CZE)
G. Muguruza (ESP) vs [13] C. Suárez Navarro (ESP)

Not Before 7:00 pm
[1] S. Halep (ROU) vs [6] E. Makarova (RUS)
[3] C. Wozniacki (DEN) vs [10] [WC] F. Pennetta (ITA)

COURT 1 start 2:00 pm
[8] T Babos (HUN) / K Mladenovic (FRA) vs M Niculescu (ROU) / A Panova (RUS)
A Kudryavtseva (RUS) / A Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) vs J Goerges (GER) / A Groenefeld (GER)

Not Before 6:00 pm
After suitable rest – A Rodionova (AUS) / A Rodionova (AUS) vs [6] G Muguruza (ESP) / C Suárez Navarro (ESP)
After suitable rest – [7] C Garcia (FRA) / K Srebotnik (SLO) vs [2] E Makarova (RUS) / E Vesnina (RUS)

Share

ITF Confirms Dates for 2016 Davis Cup

DCshowyourcolours

(February 18, 2015) The International Tennis Federation’s Davis Cup Committee confirmed the calendar dates for the 2016 Davis Cup:

 

World Group first round                         4-6 March

World Group quarterfinals                      15-17 July

World Group semifinals and play-offs    16-18 September

World Group Final                                 25-27 November

 

The Committee had previously confirmed the following weeks for the 2017-18 competition:

 

World Group first round                         week after Australian Open

World Group quarterfinals                      week after Miami

World Group semifinals and play-offs    week after US Open

World Group Final                                 week after ATP World Tour Finals

 

The 2015 Davis Cup by BNP Paribas World Group first round ties are taking place next month on March 6-8.

Share