Master 1000 Paris: Berdych secures his place in the ATP Finals. Raonic beats Federer - UBITENNIS
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Master 1000 Paris: Berdych secures his place in the ATP Finals. Raonic beats Federer




TENNIS MASTER 1000 PARIS – Milos Raonic kept his hopes of qualifying for the ATP Finals alive by beating Federer 7-6, 7-5 for the first time in his career. Earlier in the day Tomas Berdych secured his berth for the World Tour Finals by beating Kevin Anderson 6-7, 6-4, 6-4.


In the first two quarter finals of the day at the Master 1000 Paris-Bercy Tomas Berdych secured his place for the World Tour Finals in London and Milos Raonic remained in contention for the last available place for the end-of-year tournament. The Czech won his quarter final match against Kevin Anderson coming back from a set down extending his winning streak against the South African to 12 matches and no defeats. The Canadian won his first ever match against the Swiss at his sixth attempt. Tomorrow Berdych and Raonic will face each other for a place in the final.

Raonic d. Federer 7-6(5), 7-5

Milos Raonic finally cancelled the zero in the head to head statistics with Roger Federer. The Swiss had won all the six previous meetings with the Canadian, but this it was the seventh seed who came out victorious. Raonic won 7-6(5), 7-5 in one hour and thirty two minutes of play keeping himself in the race for a place at the ATP Finals and moving the pressure now on Ferrer to beat Nishikori.

Federer lost harming his chances to return to the number one spot in the rankings, but today he was almost powerless to stop Raonic who played one of his best matches, certainly it was one of his most determined performances.

In the first set, as easily predictable, there were few chances for breaks. The only one happened to the Canadian in the sixth game. He earned the first and only break point of the set with a deep forehand return to the feet of Federer who couldn’t return the ball in the court. The Swiss saved the break point with a forehand winner. The set was decided at the tie-break which started with three consecutive mini-breaks which left Raonic ahead 3-1. The Canadian didn’t relinquish the lead earning himself three set points at 6-3. The first two set points were on Federer’s serve and the Swiss saved both, the third was on Raonic’s serve and he ended the set with his 11th ace of the match.

The drama in the second set all came at the end in the last three games. With the score at 5-4 for the Swiss, Raonic was serving to stay in the set. At 30 all the Canadian tried a stop volley but Federer reached the ball and passed with a passing shot in the ample space left by his opponent. It was Federer’s first break point of the match and a set point, but Raonic ended the Swiss’ hopes with his favoured weapon, his serve. In the next game Raonic broke serve. He got to break point with an outstanding return and then punished Federer with a backhand cross court passing shot. The seventh seed served for the match at 6-5 and he didn’t falter ending the contest after 1 hour and thirty two minutes with ace number twenty one of his match.

Federer’s chances to recapture the World Number one spot have been dented, but all is not lost. “I always thought it was going to get solved in London. What this means is I will have a good preparation for London.” said Federer, “It’s not that I didn’t want to win here, but I knew it was going to be tough from the start. I accept that. Now I will continue to prepare for London. I’m going to stay on indoors now. Obviously two days more is big. So I’m looking forward to some days off right now, really resting my body to the max in a short period of time. I have plenty of days now to get ready for London, which is kind of nice, as well. So I can actually properly practise for a change as well again.”

“Clearly he served well when he had to. I mean, it was a classic indoor match. Few shots here and there went his way today Really credit to him. When I did have the chance, he was there, as well. I didn’t do much wrong, either. It hurts to lose that way. Clearly he served well when he had to. I mean, it was a classic indoor match. Few shots here and there went his way today Really credit to him. When I did have the chance, he was there, as well.”

“I think this was the biggest win for me,“ said Raonic after the match. “I’m very motivated (to qualify for the ATP Finals). I think I have been sort of trying to find this level, fortunately I have been able to do so this week. I definitely struggled the last few weeks. If it wasn’t sort of me biting away the whole time and having that kind of motivation to need and to want to do well here, I don’t think I’d find the answers that I have this week.”

Berdych d. Anderson 6-7(4), 6-4, 6-4

Tomas Berdych booked his place for the ATP Finals by winning his quarter finals match against Kevin Anderson 6-7(4), 6-4, 6-4 in two hours and thirty-three minutes. The Czech player made life difficult for himself and could ave won this match more comfortably, but as in previous matches he struggled to kill the match when he had the opportunity. Berdych’s difficulties in closing the match should not detract from the good match played by the South African who was still unable to beat his rival after 12 matches.

In the first set the fifth seed took an early break, but he couldn’t hold onto his lead and ended up losing the set at the tie-break 7-4. In the second set Berdych was again the first to break serve and this time he didn’t give up the advantage and won the second set 6-4 without giving Anderson a break point. The third set saw the South African make the first break in the fourth game, but his lead was short lived as Berdych broke back immediately. The Czech made a second break in the ninth game which then allowed him to serve out for a place in the semifinal which he did.


Diego Schwartzman Receives Threats On Social Media Following Shock Davis Cup Defeat

The world No.15 is the latest player to speak out about recieving abusive messages on social media.




The weekend has been an emotional rollercoaster for Diego Schwartzman, who suffered ‘one of the worst’ losses of his career before helping secure victory for his country in their Davis Cup tie against Belarus.


On Saturday the world No.15 was stunned by unranked 18-year-old Daniil Ostapenkov who is yet to play a professional match on the pro Tour. Ostapenkov is currently ranked 63 in the world on the junior circuit. The comprehensive victory shocked the Argentinian team who was hosting the tie at the Buenos Aires Lawn Tennis Club.

Despite the shock upset, Schwartman managed to redeem himself the following day when he defeated Alexander Zgirovsky 6-1, 6-2. That victory handed his country an unassailable 3-1 lead in their tie and secured their place in the 2022 Davis Cup qualifiers which will take place next March.

Not only playing Davis, but in Buenos Aires, with a lot of people you don’t see, it’s not easy. My level can be and has to be much better. After the game on Saturday I had a difficult day in the spirit of being able to get up and enjoy with the group,” La Nacion quoted Schwartzman as saying.
“The most normal thing was that we won the series. It’s what everyone expected. But when you have a very difficult day at work like it was on Saturday and then you win, it excites you because you have some internal things withheld.”

Between those two matches, Schwartzman revealed that he was trolled on social media by some people unhappy about his loss in the tie. The 2020 French Open semi-finalist said he received criticism and even threats from some asking him to leave his home country. Something he admits affected him at times.

“It was one of the worst days of my career,” Schwartzman commented on his loss to Zgirovsky. “I lost to an unranked, inexperienced player. All that already affects (me) a lot. Although 80 or 90 percent of the people are always encouraging (me), there was a minority who criticized me with bad intentions.’
“I received threats, insults and requests not to return to Argentina. More or less, it affects (me)”.

Schwartzman is not the first player to speak out about online abuse. During the US Open Shelby Rogers said she was expecting to receive ‘death threats’ following her loss to Emma Raducanu who went on to win the title. Sloane Stephens has also previously spoken out about being the victim of racism online.

The 29-year-old says he has previously tried to interact with those who have trolled him on social media to find out why they are doing so.

Sometimes I start to answer some messages and I ask those people if they realize what they are sending,” Schwartzman said during his press conference. “The vast majority apologize and say they had not realized it. But at the moment it hurts. That very ill-intentioned criticism is the only bad thing about social networks.”

Schwartzman has won four ATP titles and earned more than $10M in prize money so far in his career.

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Spanish Veteran Feliciano Lopez Addresses Future On The Tour

23 years after he played his first main draw match on the ATP Tour, Lopez says his longevity in the sport has been achieved with the help of of some luck.




Feliciano Lopez of Spain is pictured during the semi-final of ATP Fever-Tree Championships tennis tournament at Queen's Club in west London on June 20, 2019.

Feliciano Lopez has dismissed any speculation that he could retire in the coming weeks after saying he is taking life on the Tour in his stride.


The 39-year-old Spaniard is currently the second oldest player in the world’s top 200 after Roger Federer, who is a year older than him. Lopez made his ATP Tour debut at the 1998 Barcelona Open which was before the birth of Jannik Sinner and Carlos Alcaraz. In June he became the 10th active player to record his 500th win on the Tour.

Currently ranked 111th in the world, some are starting to wonder how much longer Lopez will continue playing. So far this season he has achieved a win-loss record of 9-19 with his best performance being a run to the quarter-finals of the Mallorca Open which was held on the grass. It was in Mallorca where he defeated Karen Khachanov who is the only top 30 player he has beaten so far in 2021.

I play year-by-year, the last 6-7 years have been like this, a tennis player at that age cannot think about extending his career. After turning 30 I have been lucky, I have obtained the best results of my career,” Lopez told reporters on Friday.
It is not very common for players my age, at (almost) 40 years to continue playing in the best tournaments.” He added.

Throughout his career, Lopez has impressively played in a record 78 consecutive Grand Slam tournaments dating back to the 2002 French Open. During that period he has reached the quarter-finals of a major tournament on four occasions.

“I don’t play to break records, what makes me most excited is to continue playing Grand Slams. For me, maintaining that record (78 consecutive Grand Slams played) is very nice, but more to follow. Being competitive,” he commented on the milestone.
“It is difficult for someone to overcome it because it is 20 years in a row without missing a great one. I have had continuity and enormous luck. Those of my generation are practically all retired.”

Away from the court, the former world No.12 is the current tournament director of the Madrid Open. Making him one of a few players historically to both be playing on the Tour and managing a tournament at the same time. Recently it was confirmed that Madrid will continue hosting it’s combined event until at least 2030 following a renewed agreement between the city council and the Madrid trophy promotion.

Lopez has won a total of seven ATP titles so far in his career and has earned more than $18M in prize money.

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ATP Moves Closer To Staging Five More 12-Day Masters 1000 Events After Board Approval

Changes are coming to the men’s Tour which includes a brand new ‘profit-sharing formular’ for players.




Masters tournaments in North America, Europe and Asia are set to be expanded over the coming months after the ATP Board recently approved some ‘key aspects’ of their strategic plan.


In a letter issued to players, ATP chairman Andrea Gaudenzi said an agreement has been reached concerning a variety of topics, which include the expansion of various Masters 1000 events. It is understood that the plan is for Rome, Madrid, Canada, Cincinnati and Shanghai to be increased to 12-day events instead of just one week. Putting them more in line with Indian Wells and Miami. reports that under the new structure, ATP 250 events will also take place during the second week of those tournaments and they could receive a subsidy from the ATP Tour, provided by extra fees paid by the Masters tournaments.

Masters 1000 events are the third highest-ranked category events in men’s tennis after Grand Slams and the ATP Finals in terms of prize money and ranking points on offer. The series was first introduced back in 1990 but it wasn’t until 2009 that the name ‘Masters 1000’ was born. The number represents how many ranking points the winner receives.

Besides the proposed changes to the Masters series, the Board has also given a green light to “a new Profit-Sharing formula” and “long-term prize money levels.” The prize money increase is reportedly said to be 2.5 percent of a base level, plus a bonus pool with a 50 percent share of the collective profit of the Masters events.

“This represents significant progress for our sport and the way our player and tournament members operate under the equal partnership of the ATP Tour. It is only through the spirit of this partnership, transparency, and alignment of interests that we can truly maximise your potential and switch our focus to the competition we face in the border sports and entertainment landscape,” Gaudenzi wrote in his letter to players.

Part of the plan also include making changes to ATP Media, who are in charge of broadcasting the events. At present it is currently jointly owned by the Tour and each of the Masters 1000 events. However, in the future it has been proposed that those tournaments trade in their ownership rights for shares in ATP media. Exact details about this process have not been publicly disclosed and it is unclear if all of the tournaments would agree to such a move.

The ATP also wants to create a ‘Tennis Data Innovations’ which will be an independent entity.

All of these proposed changes are still subject to further agreement around additional matters. The ATP have been working on details of their strategic plan for the past 18 months.

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