May 31, 2016

Djokovic and Azarenka Two Wins Away From an Indian Wells – Miami Double

(March 30, 2016) No. 1 Novak Djokovic is a match closer to claiming his sixth Miami Open title and third in a row. The Serb, dealing with back spasms on Wednesday night stopped No. 7 seed Tomas Berdych 6-3, 6-3 to reach the semifinals. His opponent will be No. 15 David Goffin of Belgium. Goffin, reaching his second straight Masters 1000 semifinal rallied past Frenchman and No. 18 seed Gilles Simon 3-6, 6-2, 6-1.

Djokovic is now 26-1 on the year. He stand two wins away from pulling off a fourth career Indian Wells – Miami double.

David Goffin

David Goffin

“Yeah, the first set it was tough because it was a good set with a good level,” Goffin said. “Gilles was really solid on his baseline, but I didn’t serve really well in the first set. I didn’t have any free points with my serve, so it was tough.

“I had so many opportunities to come back in the set. I didn’t take, yeah, any occasions to come back. I knew that the level was there and I had to keep going like this, just to stay more focus on some shots just to finish the points, some volleys, some smash, maybe some easy forehands. Maybe just be more precise, because I knew that I was feeling really good.

“Then game after game I was feeling much better. The serve was there in the third set. Yeah, I think with the serve it was the key to win the third.”

Goffin talked about his good run over the past few weeks: “I had a good level all this year during practice. I just had to reproduce my level during a match.

“I think match after match — you know, the first one against Frances Tiafoe in Indian Wells was not the best, but I won that one. Match after match was feeling much better.

“After the Davis Cup of course when I won against Marin Cilic, then match after match I was feeling much better. I won many matches in Indian Wells and here in Miami continued to win, so, yeah, I think the level is here. I have just to keep going like this. Stay aggressive.

“I worked a lot when I practiced with my coach, my two coaches. I think it’s already pays off.”

As for playing Djokovic in semifinals: “I have nothing to lose,” Goffin said. He won almost everything this year. He’s playing unbelievable tennis at the moment. But I played a great match against him last year in Cincinnati, and it could be interesting to watch the match.”

Victoria Azarenka

Victoria Azarenka

Victoria Azarenka stands two wins away from achieving the rare Indian Wells- Miami double. The 13th seed and two-time major winner defeated Britain’s Johanna Konta 6-4, 6-2 to reach the semifinals of the Miami Open on Wednesday.

Only two women have won Indian Wells and Miami in the same year and they are Kim Clijsters in 2005 and Steffi Graf in 1994 and 1996.

“If I’m able to make it, it’s great,” Azarenka said after the match. “It seems so close, but it’s really far. I want to stay in the present. I want to continue to fight and keep getting better.”

“Great player,” Azarenka said of Konta. “I was very impressed with her improvement taking from last year and seeing how well she’s handling the pressure and going in big stages and playing really well. That’s impressive. I’m sure we’re going to see a lot more of her in the future.

“I think especially for England not having women player stand out, she’s going to be the one, I think.”

I think it’s exciting to watch her journey and see happens. She’s definitely playing top 10 level right now.”

The Belarusian who has struggled with injuries the last few years said that she always believed in herself but she still hasn’t reached her peak. “I never doubt my abilities,” said the 2009 and 2011 Miami Open winner. “What came to my mind is definitely after being for so long injured, the doubt was to get healthy. So always been a little bit on my mind.

“But I still feel that I’m far from my best, and that’s what’s really exciting for me, to be motivated, to keep improving. Everybody has doubts. We’re human beings. I always trust my ability and I believe in myself.”

Azarenka will face-off against No. 2 seed Angelique Kerber who defeated No. 22 Madison Keys 6-3, 6-2 in the evening session.

For the reigning Australian Open champion, Kerber this will be her first semifinal in Miami.

Kerber dominated her American opponent, Keys made 39 unforced errors during the match. Kerber rushed need just a little over an hour to complete the victory.

“It’s nice to play a match like this,” Kerber said. “I was feeling good. Madison is always a tough opponent. I know this because we had a lot of tough battles in the past.

“I knew that I must play very good to beat her because she played very well here in the last few matches. So it’s good. It’s good.”

She continued: “I was really trying to stay focus(ed) and stay really concentrate point by point and actually trying to really only focusing on points, on point by point.

“Because I know the tennis game, and sometimes one ball can change and turn around the match. That was my goal: to be focus(ed) and playing my game until the last point.”

Kerber notched her first win over Azarenka in the most recent quarterfinals of the Australian Open. Coming into that match, the Belarusian had a 6-0 advantage over the German.

“I went out there and trying to be really aggressive from the first point, trying to really believe in myself, because until this time I never won the match against her,” Kerber said. “It was 0-6; now it’s 1-6. I will try to go out there again like in Australia and try to believe in my game and myself and, yeah, trying to challenge her.

“It will be not easy. It will be tough match. But this is for what I am practicing, for the big matches out there, to really show what, yeah, we can do and playing the best tennis.

“So I’m really looking forward to play against her again this year.”

As for playing Azarenka in the next round, Kerber said: “She had a great start of the year, of course. She is like, yeah, on fire I think right now. I will just trying to play my game go out and try to beat her. I mean, we played two times already this year and that’s the third time.

“Yeah, I will try to enjoy it. I know that I must play really my best tennis to beat her because she won Indian Wells; she’s here now in the semis.

“Yeah, I will try to take this challenge against her.”

The other semifinal which will take place on Thursday will pit No. 15 Svetlana Kuznetsova, who defeated No. 1 Serena Williams in the third round, against No. 19 seed Timea Bacsinszky who knocked out two straight top 5 seeds to reach the final four.



21 MARCH – 3 APRIL, 2016

RESULTS – MARCH 30, 2016
Women’s Singles – Quarterfinals
[2] A. Kerber (GER) d [22] M. Keys (USA) 63 62
[13] V. Azarenka (BLR) d [24] J. Konta (GBR) 64 62

Women’s Doubles – Quarterfinals
[3] B. Mattek-Sands (USA) / L. Safarova (CZE) d [5] A. Hlavackova (CZE) / L. Hradecka (CZE) 75 63
[4] T. Babos (HUN) / Y. Shvedova (KAZ) d K. Bondarenko (UKR) / O. Savchuk (UKR) 62 64
[8] Y. Xu (CHN) / S. Zheng (CHN) d E. Makarova (RUS) / B. Strycova (CZE) 62 62

Men’s Singles – Quarterfinals
[1] N. Djokovic (SRB) d [7] T. Berdych (CZE) 63 63
[15] D. Goffin (BEL) d [18] G. Simon (FRA) 36 62 61

Doubles – Quarterfinals
[4] B. Bryan (USA) / M. Bryan (USA) d [WC] O. Jasika (AUS) / J. Smith (AUS) 76(5) 63
[5] P. Herbert (FRA) / N. Mahut (FRA) d J. Chardy (FRA) / F. Martin (FRA) 67(5) 76(5) 10-7
R. Klaasen (RSA) / R. Ram (USA) d P. Petzschner (GER) / A. Peya (AUT) 76(5) 57 10-7
T. Huey (PHI) / M. Mirnyi (BLR) d J. Isner (USA) / N. Monroe (USA) 61 75


STADIUM start 1:00 pm
WTA – [15] S. Kuznetsova (RUS) vs [19] T. Bacsinszky (SUI)

Not Before 3:00 pm
ATP – [6] K. Nishikori (JPN) vs [16] G. Monfils (FRA)

7:00 pm
ATP – [12] M. Raonic (CAN) vs [24] N. Kyrgios (AUS)

Not Before 9:00 pm
WTA – [13] V. Azarenka (BLR) vs [2] A. Kerber (GER)

GRANDSTAND start 1:00 pm
ATP – [5] P. Herbert (FRA) / N. Mahut (FRA) vs [4] B. Bryan (USA) / M. Bryan (USA)

Not Before 5:00 pm
ATP – R. Klaasen (RSA) / R. Ram (USA) vs T. Huey (PHI) / M. Mirnyi (BLR)


Nadal Survives Zverev; Wawrinka Ousted at BNP Paribas Open

Rafael Nadal

Rafael Nadal

(March 16, 2016) INDIAN WELLS, California – No. 5 Rafael Nadal came back from 2-5 down and a match point at 3-5 in third set to take down up-and-coming  18-year-old German No. 58 Alexander Zverev 6-7(8), 6-0, 7-5 to reach the quarterfinals of the BNP Paribas Open.

Zverev had a match point at 5-3 in third, but he hit a forehand olley into the net and never recovered from his mistake. The Spaniard lost only two points in his Last two service games to close the match.

“I had match point, so I think I did well there. On match point I sucked, so that was it,” Zverev said.

“I missed probably the easiest shot I had the whole match. That’s what happened.”

“I think it was a great match. I mean, Rafa did what he does best; he was fighting. I mean, he’s known for that. So, you know, I still had chances to win. I had an easy shot at match point and I missed it.”

“Look, in the last three weeks I lost 7-5 in the third to Berdych; 6-4 in the fifth to Berdych; and 7-5 in the third with match point to Nadal. So I know how tough losses feel right now.

” Look, I mean, I think it was a great match. I mean, Rafa did what he does best; he was fighting. I mean, he’s known for that. So, you know, I still had chances to win. I had an easy shot at match point and I missed it.

“I’m out and he’s in the quarterfinals.”

“Very happy for the victory, obviously,” Nadal said. “I have been fighting during the whole match. First set I had big chance with not a difficult forehand down the line that I missed. So that first set probably will be the key, if I was able to hit that forehand right place, no?

“But after that, I think I played a great second set. But at the beginning, sometimes when win a set that easy is dangerous for the beginning of the next one, no?

“The beginning of the third he played aggressive, and I think I stopped a little bit the rhythm, so I was in trouble, no?

“Was a great victory. You know, it’s obvious that I played against a great player, a player who was serving unbelievable, at the beginning especially. He served well whole match apart from some double faults.

“”But you think when somebody is serving with that speed in the second serve, some double faults are the normal thing, no?

Is a great victory, as I said before. I’m very happy about it. I am especially happy about the mentality on court, the spirit of fight during the whole match, believing that I can win a match during the whole time even in the tougher situations.”

Nadal talked about the adjustments he needed to make against Zverev.

“Well, beginning of the match he was serving over 133 first serves and second serves over 120.

“I was trying to return inside the court, as I did every day, but with the second serve 120 miles with a lot of spin, 124, 123, 120, was impossible, no?

“At the beginning when that happened I was in a little bit of trouble, because I felt like I cannot lose my serve, because if I lose my serve and he was serving that way, is impossible. So I felt a little bit the pressure at the beginning.

“But then I think I returned really well during the whole match, no? First serve. Second serve I decided to go back three, four meters behind the baseline, because from inside he was — he’s young, ready to take the risks, and if the opponent wants to take the risk on the second serve and he’s having success, it’s difficult to make something, no?

“”I decided to go back and tried to put more balls in, and I think worked well. I think I had enough breaks to win the match.

“Negative thing is I lost my serve twice in the third, something that cannot happen, especially after having the break back. But that’s it. No, no, no, the match was tough. I think any player can win, and is true he had a big chance with match point and that volley.

“Sorry for him. I think at the same time, I deserve victory like this after couple of loses with big chances to win, too.”

Belgian’s David Goffin, ranked 18th in the world, stunned third seed Stan Wawrinka 6-3, 5-7, 7-6 (5) to reach the quarterfinals of Inidan Wells on Wednesday. The victory for Goffin ended a 14- match losing streak against top 10 players.

Wawrinka came back from 0-4 down in the second set to 4-4. Goffin served for the match at 5-4, but failed to close and Wawrinka won the next three games to even the match at a set all. In the third set, Goffin against served for the match and could not hold. The match went on to tiebreak. Wawrinka hit a crucial overhead out at 5-5 to give Goffin match point which capitalized on.

There were 13 breaks of serve in the match.

“I was struggling with my serve and it was difficult with the heat,” Goffin said in press. “In the third, it’s tough to fight again with the heat and with the level of Stan. The tiebreaker is like you flip a coin.”

“Well, not too great day, not too great level,” Wawrinka said smiling. “I didn’t have the rhythm yet. Was a match without brain, let’s put it that way.

“Have some tough time to focus, have some tough time to find what I wanted to play and stay calm. Still try to fight. Got lucky to come back twice. Had the chance to finish the tiebreak. I didn’t, and quite simple.”

“I think he got a bit tired and nervous also,” Wawrinka continued. “He start to miss easy shots. Gave me the chance to come back. Can lose quickly, eh?

“Two time I come back. I had the chance in the third set to finish it also at 5-5 to break him again. I didn’t. I didn’t.

“But in general, he deserved to win. You know, it was the time of. Should have finish before.”
Goffin will play No. 10 seed Marin Cilic, who defeated No. 8 Richard Gasquet, 7-5, 5-7, 6-2. Another upset saw No. 12 Milos Raonic beat No. 6 Tomas Berdych 6-4, 7-6 (7).

“A match where you sort of say you felt great but you went out there and you tried to put the pieces together, Raonic said.

“I got ahead a few service games. He served well. He got ahead. I served well. That was pretty much only one point that I would sort of have played differently. Maybe just be a little bit sharper in the second serves in the beginning service games.

“Other than that, it was all good.”

Top seeds Serena Williams and Novak Djokovic advanced easily. Williams defeated defending champion Simona Halep 6-4, 6-3.

“It feels really good to get that win,” Williams said. “She obviously has been in good form the past couple years. So, yeah, I feel really good just to get under there and buckle down and to win that.

No. 3 seed Agnieszka Radwanska, who will move up to No. 2 in the rankings, defeated Petra Kvitova 6-2, 7-6 (3) to reach the semifinals. She’ll face Serena Williams in the semifinals.

Asked about returning to No. 2 in the world, Radwanska said: “It’s always a good feeling to be back in this position. I wasn’t long last time, but I think that was a few years ago. It’s always good to be back in that position. Now it’s difficult to be No. 1.

“There is always opportunity, but it’s not about one or two tournaments. To be No. 1 you really have to play the whole season very good, and obviously catch Serena. But she is also playing very good tennis and she will want to play good and be there at No. 1.

“Well, I will try my best, and now I have the opportunity that I’m definitely not really defending much points till the grass, so, well, that’s definitely my spot that I can do that. We’ll see if I can.”

Williams said of the match-up: “She knows how to play in big stadiums and big matches, big games.

“Obviously she does everything so well, including running, and this is a good surface for her because it’s a slow surface. I think I expect there will be a lot of long rallies.

“Honestly, I will be ready. I really like Aga on and off the court. I think she’s super exciting to watch on the court, and off the court I think she’s really one of the nicest people.

“Regardless, I think it will be a really good matchup. Whoever wins will go into the final.”

Novak Djokovic defeated Feliciano Lopez 6-3, 6-3 to reach the quarterfinals.

“I’m actually glad to have a match like this with not much complications,” Djokovic said.

“I think we both started to play well on our service games, and he was 30-Love on that game when I broke him. Then he missed four first serves. I managed to step in and return very well on those four second serves that I got and just used the opportunity.

“You know, after that I was feeling more comfortable also on the return games even though Feliciano is a very difficult player to play against. He’s left handed and he has a big first serve and he can hit angles, comes to the net, so very strong, physically moves well.

“But I was very solid. I didn’t allow him to come to the net too many times. It was a good performance.”

Kei Nishikori beat John Isner 1-6, 7-6 (2), 7-6 (5) plays Nadal in the quarterfinals.


BNP Paribas Open Photo Gallery from Saturday, March 12, 2016

(March 12, 2016) INDIAN WELLS, California – Photo gallery from around the grounds of the BNP Paribas Open. All photos by Curt Janka.



Murray, Wawrinka and Berdych Lead Seeded Men into Third Round

Andy Murray

Andy Murray

(March 12, 2016) INDIAN WELLS, California – Whereas the women’s seeds keep falling, the men up until Saturday have had fewer upset victims at the BNP Paribas Open. No. 2 Andy Murray of Scotland beat Marcel Granollers 6-4, 7-6 (3). The Scot talked about the windy conditions on court.

“It was tough because obviously the ball travels through the air pretty quick here. And then it was very windy, so blowing from — so the end we walk on to the court from you were playing into the wind. It’s such a huge contrast from one end to the other because of how the air is here.

“So when you’re playing with the wind it’s really flying on you and you feel like if you barely touch the ball it’s flying a lot. Then from the other side, you know, it’s completely opposite. You really need to give the ball a big, big hit to get it deep.

“And, yeah, much different conditions to what I have obviously been practicing and playing in in the last five weeks against a, you know, tough sort of unorthodox player. He’s got quite a different game. He’s very smart player, as well, intelligent player, and often makes the right decisions. Yeah, made it tough for me.”

Stan Wawrinka had a straight forward 6-3, 6-2 victory over Illya Marchenko.

Juan Martin Del Potro

Juan Martin Del Potro

No. 6 Tomas Berdych faced off against wildcard, former U.S. Open champion Juan Martin Del Potro 7-6 (4), 6-2. Del Potro had been sidelined until last month with a third wrist surgery.

The Argentine said he’s making progress.

“But I think this will be my first match against a top-10 player was okay,” he said. “I played a great first set. I had my opportunities to win that set and I miss it.

“I think of course I’m sad for my lose, but I’m in a good way to get better in the future. It’s not easy play against Tomas. Even if I’m 100%, he’s a great player. He plays so aggressive all the time, and I had to run a lot today.

“But I think the positive thing is I’m in a good way to improve my game.”

Other men’s seeds advancing included No. 8 Richard Gasquet, No. 12 Milos Raonic and No. 13 Gael Monfils.

Nick Kyrgios

Nick Kyrgios

The biggest upset on the men’s side was No. 24 Nick Kyrgios beaten by Albert Ramos-Vinolas of Spain 7-6 (4), 7-5.

Kyrgios did not play Australia’s Davis Cup tie against the United States due to a virus, but he would not blame his loss on his illness.

“I’m not going to take anything away from Ramos. Every time I have played him it’s been a tough match.

“Matchup-wise I think it’s great for me, but he always goes out there and competes. I thought that these conditions probably suit him. He likes to rip his forehand a little bit.

“But, you know, I’m nowhere near where I was. I was feeling great in Marseilles and the start of Dubai, but obviously the year hasn’t been great. I have had a lot of travel. Trying to get better. I was trying to force practice sessions here, trying to push, but body wasn’t letting me do it.”


Djokovic Retires from Dubai Match with Infection in his Eyes

Novak Djokovic

Novak Djokovic

(February 25, 2016) Top seed Novak Djokovic was forced to retire with an infection in both eyes after losing the first set 6-3, which gave sixth seed Feliciano Lopez a place in the semifinals of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships on Thursday.


“It’s an eye problem,” Djokovic said. “I have had it ever since I arrived to Dubai. Started with an infection and then severe allergy. That’s what I was told. It’s gotten worse in the last two days, unfortunately. It’s the first time that I have had such a problem with the eye. It was unfortunate. It was ultra sensitive today, the lights, and just wasn’t to be.

“I’m really sad to finish the tournament this way. I apologise of course. I apologise to all the people who came in to watch the match. I apologise to the tournament director and everybody who came out to support me. You know, I’m really sad to end out the tournament this way, but I was forced to.”


“I just hope that this problem with the eye will fade away in the next couple of days. I got a lot of important events waiting for me in the next period. Of course Davis Cup back home and Indian Wells, Miami, and of course clay court season.

“So, you know, physically I feel fine. Mentally, as well. It’s just something that I hope that is gonna, you know, vanish after several days, but in contrary, it was getting worse. I have to deal with it.”


“I was instructed not to wear contact lenses because of the fact that lenses are actually not helping this situation actually. They are making it worse. So I was wearing contacts only on the match yesterday night. And today, other than that, I was not wearing them at all.

“That’s all. You know, that’s all I can say. If I had a third eye I would, you know, play the tournament. I’m sorry that I’m talking to you now with my sunglasses at 10:00 p.m. It’s not a usual sight, but that’s what it is and just hoping it’s going to get better.”


“It’s very sad when you play against one of the best players in the history of the sport and he has to retire the way he did,” said Lopez. “He told me he had an infection in the eyes since a few days already. I had no idea and I just went on court without knowing about his illness.


“I felt that he was taking risks a little bit more than normal in some of the points that we played, especially when I made the break. Then he was trying to be more aggressive. Seems like he was not taking care of his shots sometimes. He was very aggressive where he normally don’t. So that’s why I kind of realized that something was going on.”


Second seed Stan Wawrinka beat Philipp Kohlschreiber 7-5, 6-1 and he now takes on unseeded Nick Kyrgios, who beat third seed and two-time Dubai finalist Tomas Berdych 6-4, 6-4.


“Quite happy with the match today,” Warinka said. “Was feeling better on the court. Better tennis in general. I still had some up-and-down. Not always serving well, not always playing my best tennis, but in general it was a good match. I’m happy to get through in two sets. I start to feel much better physically, so it’s positive.”


“I wasn’t in the greatest shape,” Kyrgios said of the victory. “I was really surprised with the performance I gave out there today, to come out there and beat a quality player and in tough conditions. It’s probably my favourite win over the last couple of weeks.”


“I think we have talked a lot, obviously, since the incident, “ Kyrgios said in regard to Wawrinka. “I think we have both moved on from it.

“We played on the same team in IPTL. That was actually really good. I got to know him a little bit more. He played great there. He’s one of the best players in the world, no doubt. He’s playing great tennis.

“I’m not going to do anything different,” Kyrgios continued. “I’m just going to go out there and see what happens.”




Singles – Quarter-finals
[6] F. Lopez (ESP) d [1] N. Djokovic (SRB) 63 ret. (eye)
[2] S. Wawrinka (SUI) d [8] P. Kohlschreiber (GER) 75 61
N. Kyrgios (AUS) d [3] T. Berdych (CZE) 64 64
M. Baghdatis (CYP) d [4] R. Bautista Agut (ESP) 75 60

Doubles – Quarter-finals
S. Bolelli (ITA) / A. Seppi (ITA) d J. Murray (GBR) / T. Robredo (ESP) 64 63
L. Kubot (POL) / M. Matkowski (POL) d D. Nestor (CAN) / R. Stepanek (CZE) 36 63 10-5

CENTRE COURT start 2:30 pm
S. Bolelli (ITA) / A. Seppi (ITA) vs L. Kubot (POL) / M. Matkowski (POL)

Not Before 5:00 pm
N. Kyrgios (AUS) vs [2] S. Wawrinka (SUI)

Not Before 7:00 pm
[6] F. Lopez (ESP) vs M. Baghdatis (CYP)
After Suitable Rest – F. Lopez (ESP) / M. Lopez (ESP) vs [Q] H. Chung (KOR) / J. Vesely (CZE)


Brasil Open


Singles – Second Round
D. Lajovic (SRB) d [1] [WC] B. Paire (FRA) 60 46 63
[LL] R. Carballes Baena (ESP) d [2] T. Bellucci (BRA) 26 64 63
[3] P. Cuevas (URU) d [Q] F. Bagnis (ARG) 63 75
[4] F. Delbonis (ARG) d D. Schwartzman (ARG) 36 64 62
[Q] G. Elias (POR) d S. Giraldo (COL) 64 63
[WC] T. Monteiro (BRA) d D. Munoz de la Nava (ESP) 46 63 62
I. Cervantes (ESP) d [Q] B. Rola (SLO) 76(4) 76(1)
P. Carreno Busta (ESP) d D. Gimeno-Traver (ESP) 62 36 63

Doubles – Quarter-finals
J. Peralta (CHI) / H. Zeballos (ARG) d [WC] R. Dutra Silva (BRA) / J. Souza (BRA) 64 63

Doubles – First Round

[1] M. Melo (BRA) / B. Soares (BRA) d [WC] N. Almagro (ESP) / E. Russi Assumpcao (BRA) 61 63
[3] M. Gonzalez (ARG) / A. Sa (BRA) d M. Cecchinato (ITA) / P. Lorenzi (ITA) 76(4) 61
P. Carreno Busta (ESP) / D. Marrero (ESP) d T. Daniel (JPN) / D. Gimeno-Traver (ESP) 64 64
A. Martin (SVK) / H. Podlipnik-Castillo (CHI) d [Alt] P. Bernardi (BRA) / G. Clezar (BRA) 63 36 10-2

CENTRE COURT start 12:30pm
[P. Carreno Busta (ESP) vs [LL] R. Carballes Baena (ESP)
Not Before 3:00 pm
I. Cervantes (ESP) vs [4] F. Delbonis (ARG)
Not Before 5:00 pm
D. Lajovic (SRB) vs [Q] G. Elias (POR)
Not Before 6:30 pm
[1] M. Melo (BRA) / B. Soares (BRA) vs G. Duran (ARG) / A. Molteni (ARG)
[3] P. Cuevas (URU) vs [WC] T. Monteiro (BRA)

COURT 1 start
After Suitable Rest – P. Carreno Busta (ESP) / D. Marrero (ESP) vs [3] M. Gonzalez (ARG) / A. Sa (BRA)
After Suitable Rest – F. Delbonis (ARG) / D. Schwartzman (ARG) vs A. Martin (SVK) / H. Podlipnik-Castillo (CHI)




Singles – Quarter-finals
[4] D. Thiem (AUT) d [7] G. Dimitrov (BUL) 75 62
[5] B. Tomic (AUS) d I. Marchenko (UKR) 75 75
A. Dolgopolov (UKR) d R. Haase (NED) 63 63
S. Querrey (USA) d [Q] T. Fritz (USA) 26 64 64

Doubles – Quarter-finals
[1] J. Cabal (COL) / R. Farah (COL) d A. Bedene (GBR) / G. Muller (LUX) 16 61 10-4
[3] P. Petzschner (GER) / A. Peya (AUT) d [WC] J. Erlich (ISR) / C. Fleming (GBR) 64 62
[4] T. Huey (PHI) / M. Mirnyi (BLR) d M. Fyrstenberg (POL) / S. Gonzalez (MEX) 75 62
O. Marach (AUT) / F. Martin (FRA) d E. Butorac (USA) / S. Lipsky (USA) 46 64 12-10

CANCHA CENTRAL start 4:00 pm
WTA – D. Cibulkova (SVK) vs C. Mchale (USA)
Not Before 6:00 pm
ATP – A. Dolgopolov (UKR) vs [5] B. Tomic (AUS)
Not Before 8:00 pm
WTA – [8] Y. Wickmayer (BEL) vs [2] S. Stephens (USA)
Not Before 10:00 pm
ATP – [4] D. Thiem (AUT) vs S. Querrey (USA)

GRANDSTAND start 6:00 pm
WTA – [1] A. Medina Garrigues (ESP) / A. Parra Santonja (ESP) vs M. Irigoyen (ARG) / P. Kania (POL)
ATP – [3] P. Petzschner (GER) / A. Peya (AUT) vs O. Marach (AUT) / F. Martin (FRA)
ATP – [1] J. Cabal (COL) / R. Farah (COL) vs [4] T. Huey (PHI) / M. Mirnyi (BLR)



Novak Djokovic Joins 700-Win Club with Victory in Dubai

Novak Djokovic

Novak Djokovic

(February 24, 2016) DUBAI, UAE – No. 1 Novak Djokovic joined the 700-win club on Wednesday by defeating Malek Jaziri 6-1, 6-2 in 65 minutes to reach the quarterfinals the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships.

The 28-year-old four-time Dubai champion is only the 12th player in the Open Era to reach the 700-win milestone. He is one of only three active players with this record, joining Roger Federer with 1,067 victories, and Rafael Nadal with 775.

“The first set and a half I enjoyed it, and then I started missing a lot of forehands, easy forehands from midcourt,” said Djokovic. “It frustrated me, honestly, a little bit.

“But I managed to win the match. I will take the positives out of tonight’s match and hopefully I will be able to raise my game even more.”

Djokovic will take on sixth seed Feliciano Lopez in the round of 8 and hopes to extend his perfect record against the Spaniard.

“We have had many quarterfinals playing each other, quite a few quarterfinals,” said the 10-time major champion. “The only time I played him in this tournament was actually a quarterfinal three, four years ago.

“I know he likes playing here and likes the conditions. He slices, and the ball travels through the air quickly and you’ve got to be very reactive, very quick with the baseline shots, especially when you play somebody like Feliciano who comes in very often.

“I’m sure he’s going to try to use every opportunity given to chip and charge, come to the net, serve and volley, going to try to not let me give the same look on the ball. I know that. I know what to expect.

“I’m going to try to prepare for this match well, and, as I said, you know, raise the game a little bit more than tonight.”

Stan Wawrinka

Stan Wawrinka

Second seed Stan Wawrinka advance to the quarterfinals with a 7-5, 6-1 win over Croatian qualifier Franko Skugor.

Wawrinka was two points away from departing the tournament on Tuesday against Sergiy Stakhovsky, so he was a little happier about his play on Wednesday.

“(Played) a little bit better, I think,” Wawrinka said. “I was feeling a little bit better the balls. I adapt a few things with my racquet, also with the tension.

“I think it wasn’t amazing but it’s a good win. Happy to get through to playing in the quarter tomorrow, winning in two sets tonight. There’s a lot to improve, but in general I’m happy to win.”

Warwrinka will next face eighth seed Philipp Kohlschreiber.

223 Berdych in press 2 DDT

Two-time Dubai finalist, third seed Tomas Berdych dismissed Italian qualifier Thomas Fabbiano 6-2, 6-2. Berdych will play Nick Kyrgios. Kyrgios defeated the Czech en route to winning the Marseille tournament last week, his first ATP title.

“He’s part of really like fireworks on the court,” Berdych said of Kyrgios. “I mean in a good way. He’s playing really aggressive. He’s going for a lot of shots that they are not really, you know, with, I would say, on the safe side, you know.

“So he’s risking a lot. If couple of those shots are going in and he makes those extra points, then it can really make a difference.

“But overall he’s been serving incredibly well, and I think he’s been much more solid on the return side, as well.

“Of course, I mean, the conditions of playing indoors, the court, which is quite small, you know, feels like with all the side boards and everything, so, you know, that’s how it is.

“So here it’s again all kinds of different, you know, fast court, fast balls, playing outside. The court is very big. So let’s see.”


Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships

ATP World Tour 500  

Dubai, U.A.E. (+4 hours GMT)
22-27 February 2016   Surface: Hard


Singles – Second Round
[1] N. Djokovic (SRB) d [WC] M. Jaziri (TUN) 61 62
[2] S. Wawrinka (SUI) d [Q] F. Skugor (CRO) 75 61
[3] T. Berdych (CZE) d [Q] T. Fabbiano (ITA) 62 62
[4] R. Bautista Agut (ESP) d H. Chung (KOR) 60 61
[6] F. Lopez (ESP) d L. Rosol (CZE) 63 76(7)
[8] P. Kohlschreiber (GER) d B. Coric (CRO) 62 76(5)
M. Baghdatis (CYP) d V. Pospisil (CAN) 64 62
N. Kyrgios (AUS) d M. Kukushkin (KAZ) 63 62

Doubles – Quarter-finals
F. Lopez (ESP) / M. Lopez (ESP) d [1] J. Rojer (NED) / H. Tecau (ROU) 64 64
[Q] H. Chung (KOR) / J. Vesely (CZE) d R. Bautista Agut (ESP) / J. Sousa (POR) 67(2) 76(6) 11-9

Doubles – First Round
D. Nestor (CAN) / R. Stepanek (CZE) d [2] R. Bopanna (IND) / F. Mergea (ROU) 36 76(6) 10-4
J. Murray (GBR) / T. Robredo (ESP) d [4] H. Kontinen (FIN) / J. Peers (AUS) 26 64 10-8
L. Kubot (POL) / M. Matkowski (POL) d I. Dodig (CRO) / M. Draganja (CRO) 46 64 10-7


CENTRE COURT start 3:00 pm
N. Kyrgios (AUS) vs [3] T. Berdych (CZE)
[4] R. Bautista Agut (ESP) vs M. Baghdatis (CYP)

Not Before 7:00 pm
[8] P. Kohlschreiber (GER) vs [2] S. Wawrinka (SUI)
[1] N. Djokovic (SRB) vs [6] F. Lopez (ESP)

COURT 1 start 4:00 pm
S. Bolelli (ITA) / A. Seppi (ITA) vs J. Murray (GBR) / T. Robredo (ESP)
L. Kubot (POL) / M. Matkowski (POL) vs D. Nestor (CAN) / R. Stepanek (CZE)



Singles – First Round
A. Dolgopolov (UKR) d [1] D. Ferrer (ESP) 64 64
S. Querrey (USA) d [2] K. Nishikori (JPN) 64 63
[4] D. Thiem (AUT) d D. Tursunov (RUS) 67(5) 63 64
[5] B. Tomic (AUS) d A. Mannarino (FRA) 64 64
[7] G. Dimitrov (BUL) d D. Young (USA) 63 64
R. Haase (NED) d A. Bedene (GBR) 64 67(3) 64
I. Marchenko (UKR) d [Q] R. Harrison (USA) 76(3) 46 76(5)
[Q] T. Fritz (USA) d V. Estrella Burgos (DOM) 61 63

Doubles – First Round
[1] J. Cabal (COL) / R. Farah (COL) d T. de Bakker (NED) / R. Haase (NED) 64 76(5)
E. Butorac (USA) / S. Lipsky (USA) d [2] R. Klaasen (RSA) / R. Ram (USA) 76(8) 60
[WC] J. Erlich (ISR) / C. Fleming (GBR) d M. Pavic (CRO) / M. Venus (NZL) 46 76(5) 11-9
O. Marach (AUT) / F. Martin (FRA) d J. Chardy (FRA) / L. Paes (IND) 62 64


CANCHA CENTRAL start 4:00 pm
ATP – I. Marchenko (UKR) vs [5] B. Tomic (AUS)
ATP – A. Dolgopolov (UKR) vs R. Haase (NED)
Not Before 8:00 pm
ATP – [7] G. Dimitrov (BUL) vs [4] D. Thiem (AUT)
Not Before 10:00 pm
ATP – [Q] T. Fritz (USA) vs S. Querrey (USA)

GRANDSTAND start 4:00 pm
WTA – D. Cibulkova (SVK) vs [6] J. Larsson (SWE)
WTA – [8] Y. Wickmayer (BEL) or M. Puig (PUR) vs [3] A. Pavlyuchenkova (RUS)
WTA – [WC] N. Osaka (JPN) vs [2] S. Stephens (USA)
ATP – [4] T. Huey (PHI) / M. Mirnyi (BLR) vs M. Fyrstenberg (POL) / S. Gonzalez (MEX)

CANCHA 4 start 5:00 pm
WTA – M. Lucic-Baroni (CRO) vs C. Mchale (USA)
WTA – [3] L. Arruabarrena (ESP) / P. Goncalves (BRA) vs M. Irigoyen (ARG) / P. Kania (POL)
WTA-After Suitable Rest – [WC] A. Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) / Y. Wickmayer (BEL) vs [2] K. Bertens (NED) / J. Larsson (SWE)

CANCHA 3 start 5:00 pm
ATP – [WC] J. Erlich (ISR) / C. Fleming (GBR) vs [3] P. Petzschner (GER) / A. Peya (AUT)
ATP – O. Marach (AUT) / F. Martin (FRA) vs E. Butorac (USA) / S. Lipsky (USA)
ATP – [1] J. Cabal (COL) / R. Farah (COL) vs A. Bedene (GBR) / G. Muller (LUX)

CANCHA 2 start 6:00 pm
WTA – [1] A. Medina Garrigues (ESP) / A. Parra Santonja (ESP) vs T. Maria (GER) / M. Sanchez (USA)
WTA-After Suitable Rest – X. Han (CHN) / C. Mchale (USA) vs [PR] A. Rodionova (AUS) / G. Voskoboeva (KAZ)

Brasil Open


No matches completed due to rain.


CENTRE COURT start 12:00 noon
[1] M. Melo (BRA) / B. Soares (BRA) vs [WC] N. Almagro (ESP) / E. Russi Assumpcao (BRA)
[Q] B. Rola (SLO) vs I. Cervantes (ESP) 67(4) 12
[LL] R. Carballes Baena (ESP) vs [2] T. Bellucci (BRA)
[1] [WC] B. Paire (FRA) vs D. Lajovic (SRB)
Not Before 6:30 pm
D. Munoz de la Nava (ESP) vs [WC] T. Monteiro (BRA)
[WC] R. Dutra Silva (BRA) / J. Souza (BRA) vs J. Peralta (CHI) / H. Zeballos (ARG)

COURT 1 start 11:00 am
P. Carreno Busta (ESP) vs D. Gimeno-Traver (ESP) 62 36 10
D. Schwartzman (ARG) vs [4] F. Delbonis (ARG)
S. Giraldo (COL) vs [Q] G. Elias (POR)
[3] P. Cuevas (URU) vs [Q] F. Bagnis (ARG)

COURT 2 start 11:00 am
M. Cecchinato (ITA) / P. Lorenzi (ITA) vs [3] M. Gonzalez (ARG) / A. Sa (BRA)
A. Martin (SVK) / H. Podlipnik-Castillo (CHI) vs [Alt] P. Bernardi (BRA) / G. Clezar (BRA)
P. Carreno Busta (ESP) / D. Marrero (ESP) vs T. Daniel (JPN) / D. Gimeno-Traver (ESP)

Tournament Information


Wawrinka Breaks a Racquet But Rallies for a Win in Dubai, ATP Results

223 Wawrinka broken racquet

(February 23, 2016) No. 2 seed and reigning French Open champion Stan Wawrinka rallied to defeat Sergiy Stakhovsky 5-7, 6-3, 7-5 to reach the second round of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships on Tuesday.


The Swiss saved a match point against Stakhovsky in the Marseille tournament last week, and he came within two points of losing on Tuesday. Wawrinka led 5-3 in the first set but lost the next four games. The Swiss broke his racquet in the 11th game of the set.


“It’s good for confidence but tough first match,” said Wawrinka. “I wasn’t playing well at all. I was playing not too great today. I was struggling with the condition, with my game. Quite fast condition. Flying. I was hesitating, always being behind, staying aggressive. And it’s tough to play especially against him who doesn’t give you too much rhythm.


“But it’s a good win, great win for me. Not playing well, still winning, still fighting, still finding a way, playing a little bit better at the end, trying to be the aggressive player on the court. It’s good to have a chance to play better tomorrow.”


“I play him in Marseilles. I saved match point to beat him. I expected a tough match, but I wasn’t expecting to play that bad.”


Third seed Tomas Berdych and fourth seed Roberto Bautista Agut also advanced. Berdych bested Joao Sousa 6-1, 6-4, and Bautista Agut beat Simone Bolelli 6-2, 6-4.


Borna Coric also advanced, defeating Jiri Vesely 6-4 6-4.


Last week Nick Kyrgios won his first career ATP title in Marseille, becoming the first player in the Open Era to do so without surrendering his serve, and he continued his winning ways by beating seventh seed Martin Klizan 3-6, 6-3, 6-2.


“Thought that both of us were playing really average today,” said the Australian. “I thought we both struggled with the conditions. Obviously it was really fast and the ball was flying a lot. But for me it was, you know, completely opposite conditions to what I played last week.

“So I barely hit at all here. Hit for about half an hour today, and I wasn’t feeling great. So I’m just happy I got through. But at the other end of the spectrum, you know, I played pretty bad today.”


Next up for Kyrgios will be Mikhail Kukushkin.


“Yeah, I think it’s dangerous,” Kyrgios said of the match-up. “I think this surface for him is probably his best. He likes to play on a fast surface. Hits very flat.

“I know serving is going to be key. I need to definitely play a lot better than I played today.”


All photos by Nida Alibhai


getwellsoonrf dubai photo by Nida alibhai

ATP World Tour 500
Dubai, U.A.E. (+4 hours GMT)
22-27 February 2016   Surface: Hard


Singles – First Round
[2] S. Wawrinka (SUI) d S. Stakhovsky (UKR) 57 63 75
[3] T. Berdych (CZE) d J. Sousa (POR) 61 64
[4] R. Bautista Agut (ESP) d S. Bolelli (ITA) 62 64
N. Kyrgios (AUS) d [7] M. Klizan (SVK) 36 63 62
[8] P. Kohlschreiber (GER) d [WC] M. Ilhan (TUR) 61 75
L. Rosol (CZE) d [WC] Y. Bhambri (IND) 26 76(2) 60
M. Kukushkin (KAZ) d D. Istomin (UZB) 75 76(3)
[Q] T. Fabbiano (ITA) d L. Mayer (ARG) 63 64
B. Coric (CRO) d J. Vesely (CZE) 64 64
[Q] F. Skugor (CRO) d T. Gabashvili (RUS) 62 63

Doubles – First Round
[1] J. Rojer (NED) / H. Tecau (ROU) d G. Garcia-Lopez (ESP) / V. Troicki (SRB) 62 75
[Q] H. Chung (KOR) / J. Vesely (CZE) d [3] V. Pospisil (CAN) / N. Zimonjic (SRB) 64 64
F. Lopez (ESP) / M. Lopez (ESP) d D. Inglot (GBR) / R. Lindstedt (SWE) 76(3) 63
S. Bolelli (ITA) / A. Seppi (ITA) d [WC] M. Bhupathi (IND) / A. Qureshi (PAK) 64 62


CENTRE COURT start 2:00 pm
[4] R. Bautista Agut (ESP) vs H. Chung (KOR)
Not Before 4:00 pm
[Q] T. Fabbiano (ITA) vs [3] T. Berdych (CZE)
Not Before 7:00 pm
[1] N. Djokovic (SRB) vs [WC] M. Jaziri (TUN)
[Q] F. Skugor (CRO) vs [2] S. Wawrinka (SUI)

COURT 1 start 2:00 pm
V. Pospisil (CAN) vs M. Baghdatis (CYP)
[8] P. Kohlschreiber (GER) vs B. Coric (CRO)
Not Before 5:00 pm
N. Kyrgios (AUS) vs M. Kukushkin (KAZ)
[1] J. Rojer (NED) / H. Tecau (ROU) vs F. Lopez (ESP) / M. Lopez (ESP)

COURT 2 start 2:00 pm
J. Murray (GBR) / T. Robredo (ESP) vs [4] H. Kontinen (FIN) / J. Peers (AUS)
I. Dodig (CRO) / M. Draganja (CRO) vs L. Kubot (POL) / M. Matkowski (POL)
[Q] H. Chung (KOR) / J. Vesely (CZE) vs R. Bautista Agut (ESP) / J. Sousa (POR)

COURT 3 start 3:00 pm
L. Rosol (CZE) vs [6] F. Lopez (ESP)
D. Nestor (CAN) / R. Stepanek (CZE) vs [2] R. Bopanna (IND) / F. Mergea (ROU)


Brasil Open
Sao Paulo, Brazil (-3 hours GMT)
22-28 February, 2016 Surface: Clay


Singles – First Round
P. Carreno Busta (ESP) d [5] A. Ramos-Vinolas (ESP) 06 64 76(2)
[Q] B. Rola (SLO) d [6] P. Lorenzi (ITA) 76(3) 36 76(5)
[WC] T. Monteiro (BRA) d [7] N. Almagro (ESP) 63 75
[Q] G. Elias (POR) d [8] P. Andujar (ESP) 16 64 ret. (right elbow)
D. Lajovic (SRB) d L. Vanni (ITA) 62 62
S. Giraldo (COL) d M. Cecchinato (ITA) 62 62
[Q] F. Bagnis (ARG) d P. Mathieu (FRA) 64 61
I. Cervantes (ESP) d M. Granollers (ESP) 63 64
D. Schwartzman (ARG) d H. Zeballos (ARG) 63 42 ret. (dehydration)

Doubles – First Round
G. Duran (ARG) / A. Molteni (ARG) d T. Bellucci (BRA) / M. Demoliner (BRA) 64 62
J. Peralta (CHI) / H. Zeballos (ARG) d M. Kowalczyk (POL) / A. Siljestrom (SWE) 76(3) 75


CENTRE COURT start 12:00 noon
[Q] B. Rola (SLO) vs I. Cervantes (ESP)
D. Schwartzman (ARG) vs [4] F. Delbonis (ARG)
M. Cecchinato (ITA) / P. Lorenzi (ITA) vs [3] M. Gonzalez (ARG) / A. Sa (BRA)
Not Before 6:30 pm
[1] M. Melo (BRA) / B. Soares (BRA) vs [WC] N. Almagro (ESP) / E. Russi Assumpcao (BRA)
[LL] R. Carballes Baena (ESP) vs [2] T. Bellucci (BRA)

COURT 1 start 12:00 noon
P. Carreno Busta (ESP) vs D. Gimeno-Traver (ESP)
A. Martin (SVK) / H. Podlipnik-Castillo (CHI) vs [2] P. Cuevas (URU) / M. Granollers (ESP)
P. Carreno Busta (ESP) / D. Marrero (ESP) vs T. Daniel (JPN) / D. Gimeno-Traver (ESP)

Albierto Mexicano Open
Acapulco, Mexico (-6 hours GMT)
22-27 February 2016 Surface: Hard


Singles – First Round
[1] D. Ferrer (ESP) d J. Millman (AUS) 64 62
[Q] R. Harrison (USA) d [3] M. Cilic (CRO) 63 36 62
[4] D. Thiem (AUT) d D. Dzumhur (BIH) 76(3) 63
[5] B. Tomic (AUS) d R. Ram (USA) 75 63
A. Bedene (GBR) d [6] I. Karlovic (CRO) 64 12 ret. (knee)
[7] G. Dimitrov (BUL) d D. Kudla (USA) 75 61
[Q] T. Fritz (USA) d [8] J. Chardy (FRA) 64 36 63
A. Dolgopolov (UKR) d S. Johnson (USA) 75 76(4)
D. Tursunov (RUS) d S. Groth (AUS) 64 36 75
S. Querrey (USA) d D. Sela (ISR) 62 60

Doubles – First Round
A. Bedene (GBR) / G. Muller (LUX) d W. Koolhof (NED) / M. Middelkoop (NED) 63 36 10-7
M. Fyrstenberg (POL) / S. Gonzalez (MEX) d S. Johnson (USA) / S. Querrey (USA) 64 46 10-6


CANCHA CENTRAL start 4:00 pm
ATP – [1] D. Ferrer (ESP) vs A. Dolgopolov (UKR)
WTA – [1] V. Azarenka (BLR) vs D. Cibulkova (SVK)

Not Before 8:00 pm
ATP – S. Querrey (USA) vs [2] K. Nishikori (JPN)
ATP – D. Tursunov (RUS) vs [4] D. Thiem (AUT)

GRANDSTAND start 4:00 pm
WTA – [Q] J. Glushko (ISR) vs [3] A. Pavlyuchenkova (RUS)
WTA – O. Govortsova (BLR) vs [2] S. Stephens (USA)
ATP – [7] G. Dimitrov (BUL) vs D. Young (USA)
WTA – [8] Y. Wickmayer (BEL) vs M. Puig (PUR)

CANCHA 4 start 4:00 pm
WTA – M. Duque-Mariño (COL) vs [WC] N. Osaka (JPN)
WTA – S. Rogers (USA) vs [6] J. Larsson (SWE)
WTA – [4] J. Konta (GBR) vs M. Lucic-Baroni (CRO)
WTA – M. Irigoyen (ARG) / P. Kania (POL) vs [Alt] J. Glushko (ISR) / R. Peterson (SWE)

CANCHA 3 start 4:00 pm
ATP – A. Mannarino (FRA) vs [5] B. Tomic (AUS)
ATP – [Q] R. Harrison (USA) vs I. Marchenko (UKR)
ATP – [Q] T. Fritz (USA) vs V. Estrella Burgos (DOM)
ATP – J. Chardy (FRA) / L. Paes (IND) vs O. Marach (AUT) / F. Martin (FRA)

CANCHA 2 start 4:00 pm
ATP – [WC] J. Erlich (ISR) / C. Fleming (GBR) vs M. Pavic (CRO) / M. Venus (NZL)
WTA – C. Mchale (USA) vs [7] D. Kovinic (MNE)
WTA – A. Mestach (BEL) / D. Schuurs (NED) vs T. Maria (GER) / M. Sanchez (USA)
WTA – M. Erakovic (NZL) / S. Soler-Espinosa (ESP) vs X. Han (CHN) / C. Mchale (USA)

CANCHA 1 start 5:00 pm
ATP – R. Haase (NED) vs A. Bedene (GBR)
ATP – E. Butorac (USA) / S. Lipsky (USA) vs [2] R. Klaasen (RSA) / R. Ram (USA)
ATP-After Suitable Rest – [1] J. Cabal (COL) / R. Farah (COL) vs T. de Bakker (NED) / R. Haase (NED)


Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer Set Up Semifinal Clash at the Australian Open

Novak Djokovic

Novak Djokovic

(January 26, 2016) Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer will clash in the semifinals of the Australian Open as both men advanced with straight set victories on Tuesday.

The No. 3 seed Federer moved into his 12th Australian Open semifinal beating Tomas Berdych 7-6(4), 6-2, 6-4. No. 1 seed and defending champion Novak Djokovic bested No. 7 seed Kei Nishikori 6-3, 6-2, 6-4 in the night session in Rod Laver Arena.

“I think I played well overall,” said the 17-time major champion. “You know, wished maybe I didn’t get a break here or there. At the same time Tomas was pushing for it, he was looking for it, so clearly it can happen.

“He’s got a lot of power. He knows how to do it. So I was happy that on both occasions, first and third, I was able to react quickly. The second set, when I did have the break, I was able to roll with it.

“Yeah, I think the first set was tough. It was the one that took the longest, had the most importance of all the sets, in my opinion. It was definitely key to the rest of the match because I think it maybe might’ve taken some energy out of Tomas. Who knows? If not physical, also mental. It’s always tough to lose the first set in best of five in a breaker in my opinion.”

The match was the 80th win at the Australian Open for Federer. He became the oldest player at 34, since Colin Dibley at 35 to reach the semifinals at Melbourne.

Djokovic is hoping to win the tournament for a record sixth time – only Rod Laver has accomplished that feat.

For the 28-year-old Djokovic this will be his 29th Grand Slam semifinal and sixth in Melbourne. The Serbian has gone on to win the tournament the each of the five previous times he’s reached the final four.

228 Federer smiles-001

Federer was asked about what it would mean to him to win one more major in the “Djokovic” era: “I mean, a lot, yeah. It’s part of the reason why I guess I’m still playing. I feel like I’m competitive at the top. I can beat all the guys on tour. It’s nice now that in the last three slams that I’ve been as consistent as I have been.

“I’m playing good tennis, fun tennis for me anyway. I really enjoy being able to come to the net more like back in the day. So I’m very pleased.

“It would mean a lot to me, no doubt about it.”

“Roger is playing really terrific tennis in last two years,” Djokovic said as he’ll play the Swiss for the 45th time in his career on Thursday. “We played two Grand Slam finals last year. I know very well how good he plays, especially in the later stages of a major event.

“He always makes you play your best. My best is what is going to be necessary to win against him. Hopefully I’ll be able to deliver.”


“It’s obvious that he’s a very complete player. He’s trying lately to come to the net more, kind of shorten up the rallies. I mean, he definitely has the game for that. He’s got a great variation from the backhand side with the slice, short slice. He’s got great defense, amazing offense. He’s very complete. He puts constant pressure on the opponent. You have to be aware at all times. You got to be tough. You got to be concentrated.”

Djokovic and Federer are tied in their head-to-head record at 22-22.


Djokovic Survives Five Set Test Against Simon; Federer Cruises Past Goffin to Reach Australian Open Quarterfinals

(January 24, 2016) Novak Djokovic survived a five-set test from Gilles Simon, while Roger Federer routed David Goffin to reach the quarterfinals of the Australian Open on Sunday.

No. 1 Djokovic made 100 unforced errors in his 6-3, 6-7 (1), 6-4, 4-6, 6-3 win in four hours, 32 minutes over Simon.

“I made a lot of unforced errors today,” Djokovic said after the win. “Nevertheless, he was fighting. He was playing well. Physically very demanding. I’m just happy to get through this one.”

The defending champion’s victory puts him in his 27 consecutive quarterfinal at a major equaling Jimmy Connors and behind Roger Federer with 36.

“These are the tournaments that we value the most and to be able to always come up with the best performance in the Grand Slams, of course I’m very proud of it and hopefully I can keep going,” Djokovic said.

“I don’t feel good,” Simon said about the loss.

“It’s always a bad feeling when you lose in five also. Always like when you play so long, you feel so many things are happening on the court. So many things could have been different. Just had, like, couldn’t make it today.”

“Gilles is a great defender,” the world No. 1 explained. “Always makes you play an extra shot. You have days like this, but fortunately you manage to fight your way through. I think in important moments the serve was getting me out of trouble. That’s what I take as a positive from today.”

No. 7 Kei Nishikori will be playing Djokovic in the quarterfinals. He defeated No. 9 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 6-4, 6-2, 6-4.

“It’s gonna be big challenge to play Novak, for sure,” said Nishikori.

So what’s the most difficult thing when playing Djokovic?

I think the biggest thing is he doesn’t miss,” Nishikori said. “He doesn’t give you easy points, any free points. I have to, you know, be the one to dictate. I think he’s serving well, too.

“It always makes tough player.”

Nishikori upset Djokovic in the 2014 semifinals at the U. S. Open.

“That (win) gives me a lot of confidence to play against him again, but we played in London and he, you know, kind of destroy me,” explained Nishikori. “It wasn’t easy match for me. It’s different condition, but I hope I can make some changes and try to play better.

“Yeah. I’m ready to beat him again.”

Roger Federer’s win over David Goffin lasted less than 90 minutes with a 6-2, 6-1, 6-4 score.

“It was good,” Federer said. “Surprised it went as fast as it did. You know, to win the first two sets within 50 minutes is the best thing that can happen out there, especially with a late start and against a quality player. So I was very happy.

“It was important to keep the momentum going, keep staying aggressive and, you know, trying to get the match done in three. I was able to do that. I was very pleased.

“There were some great moments in the match which I can take a lot away from. I was happy to, which after the Dimitrov match, which wasn’t so straightforward, wasn’t so easy, I was able to find an extra gear, I guess.”

Federer will match up against No. 6 Tomas Berdych in the quarterfinals. Berdych defeated Roberto Bautista Agut 4-6, 6-4, 6-3, 1-6, 6-3.

“I have to play well,” said the Swiss about his upcoming match against the Czech. “I think the court suits him. I think this sort of flatter bounce and faster court is good for his serves, good for his returns. It’s a fast court. I think for his kind of game it’s good.

“I think I matched up well against him as of late. Then again, we haven’t played that much. He played very well here last year in exactly these conditions. I was very impressed how he played against Nick (Kyrgios). Today I didn’t see that much against Bautista Agut. It was about switching to a different court, day session, beating a different kind of player, beating him in five sets, which gives him, I’m sure, a lot of confidence, as well, even though maybe the scoreline doesn’t suggest that.

“I would assume he’s exactly where he wants to be and he’ll recover and make it a tough match for me, no doubt about it.

“It’s going to be a good match. We’re both going to play aggressive. This court pays off when you do play good and aggressive tennis.”

“I think he’s playing really well, especially in the last season,” Berdych said of his next opponent. “He’s become a very, very danger(ous) opponent, as always he is. I mean, it’s always difficult to say something else or something new. I mean, it’s Roger, so it’s always going to be a huge challenge to play him. It’s the quarterfinal of a slam.

“Yeah, I like it. I like my chances. I’m just looking forward to that match.”



ATP World Tour Finals – Djokovic Reaches Semis While Federer 3-0 in Group Play

(November 20, 2015) LONDON, UK – With Roger Federer installed at the top of the Stan Smith group at the ATP World Tour Finals, and a tight head-to-head with the Japanese No. 1, it would be interesting to see how this match unfurled. Federer was quick to deliver the first blow, only to be pegged right back.


Kei Nishikori may have had a slow start but he was not going to go quietly into the night, taking the initiative to put Federer on the back foot, only to lose the advantage.


It was a tight finish to the first set, with Federer finally taking it, and the momentum stayed with him as he quickly left Nishikori standing with a 4-1 lead. The comeback from the Japanese player was remarkable, winning the next five games.


Again Federer was the quicker off the blocks in the decider but there is something about that 1-4 score-line that spurred Nishikori into access once more, but this time his three-game run was as far as he would go, with Federer winning 7-5, 4-6, 6-4.


After the match Federer praised his opponent, who last year reached the semi-final on his debut.


Federer said: “It’s amazing what [Nishikori]’s able to produce on the court. Today was another showcase of that. It was impressive. It wasn’t easy, but somehow I got it done.”


Novak Djokovic needed just a single set to advance, having weathered a bearded Federer storm, and put the Czech Tomas Berdych under immediate pressure. While he wasn’t able to hold on to the advantage, there was always a sense that the push would come from the Serbian as he chipped away at Berdych before finally getting a break at the end of the set.


While Djokovic took the early initiative once more, he made pretty hard work for himself, giving Berdych a route back in to the match. Still it was not enough for the Czech, and he blinked first, with Djokovic closing out a 6-3 7-5 win and he will go on to face Rafael Nadal in the semi-final.


“I’ve played him so many times on different surfaces, two or three on this very court,” he said after his victory. “Hopefully I’ll be able to perform my best, that’s what’s needed to compete against him.”


With all eyes on the evening match on Friday, it is a straight shoot out between Stan Wawrinka and Andy Murray for a place to fight Federer.


Play will start for the final day of round robin matches at 12pm.