TENNIS AUSTRALIAN OPEN – 1st of February 2015. Bolelli/Fognini d. Mahut/Herbert 6-4, 6-4. An interview with Simone Bolelli and Fabio Fognini
Q. The first Italian win in a men’s double final in more than 50 years. Talk about what this win means for Italian tennis.
SIMONE BOLELLI: Well, is a very good win. Do this with Fabio is unbelievable. I think we did something amazing. Maybe we didn’t realize what we made today, but maybe tomorrow we’re going to realize better. For our nation, for our Federation, for the people follow us, who support us, all Italian people, I think we made a very good things. When we were on court, me and Fabio, I think we have a very good relationship. This is very important things when you play doubles because you’re not alone on court. We play many times. Maybe two, three years that we play almost together every doubles. We play very good matches also in Davis Cup. Now I think we’re thinking about the ATP Finals is one of our goal.
Q. You’re both great singles players. Is it a surprise to have this billing success come in doubles suddenly?
SIMONE BOLELLI: Yeah, we are surprised. Obviously we are a single player and then we play doubles with second priority. Let’s say like this. When we are out of the single, obviously we try to do our best also in doubles. Is very important for our confidence, for improve our game. So I think now we’re going to play more matches.
Q. So you’re practicing with Errani and Vinci?
FABIO FOGNINI: We play men. Woman tennis is different.
Q. Is it your biggest success in your career?
SIMONE BOLELLI: Yeah, I think one of the best moment in my career, for sure. I have very good sensation Davis Cup, but this one, I mean, we won a Grand Slam title. Is a big thing.
Q. And for you, Fabio?
FABIO FOGNINI: For sure is something that is completely different when you won a tournament. Yeah, the feeling is great because you won tournament, but now we talking about Grand Slam. Even if it’s doubles and you say, okay, our priority, it’s singles, but we have to recognize we won a Grand Slam. It’s not everything like you can win every day or every year, so at the moment we are really happy. We would like to enjoy this trophy as soon as we can. Of course tomorrow is going to be another day. We going to try — we going to work for another thing and do our best on singles. Of course, Simone say that the goal now is going to be the ATP Finals in London if it’s still in London. Of course we have to work on singles first, and then when we have the chance to play doubles, especially in the 1000 event, of course we are going to try to do our best on that. It’s everything in our hands now. It’s a big tournament. It’s 2000 points. We have to recognize we have a chance to go to the ATP Tour Final.
Q. After this controversial point in the opening game of the second set, you were so angry with the French players.
SIMONE BOLELLI: We were right. I mean, the umpire make the unbelievable mistake. He realize it after, but after was too late.
FABIO FOGNINI: Is the truth that the chair umpire recognize the mistake.
SIMONE BOLELLI: Yeah, was really clear.
FABIO FOGNINI: Even if he make a mistake, he recognize after. The first time happen in my life. Sometimes I have the problem with the chair umpire.
Q. What did he say to you?
FABIO FOGNINI: No, he say sorry. My coach went there.
SIMONE BOLELLI: I mean, they saw the video.
FABIO FOGNINI: They saw the video later. The supervisor, he say to me I was right. So I am happy. One of the first time that he say that.
Q. How do you celebrate tonight?
FABIO FOGNINI: He have the wife (laughter). No, for sure we going to celebrate. I mean, we have to change. Maybe some party for sure.
SIMONE BOLELLI: Yeah, drink. I don’t know.
FABIO FOGNINI: And tomorrow we fly back.
Q. Will you play together in the next tournaments?
SIMONE BOLELLI: We’re going to play Davis Cup, Indian Wells, and Miami. February no, because I play indoor Europe, he play South America. But then all slam, all Masters, for sure.
Q. Fabio, do you feel like you’re walking in the footsteps of Flavia Pennetta? Do you feel like you’re following her?
FABIO FOGNINI: Is the first thing I have to say that I won something like her, because she won 10 tournaments. I won only three. She was top 10; I was 13. I was asleep, but is one thing we are tight.
‘He Needs To Bulk Up’ – Tennis Great Cast Doubt On Alex De Minaur’s French Open Chances
John Newcombe believes it will be a few more years before the world No.27 reaches his peak.
One of Australia’s most decorated Grand Slam champions of all time believes compatriot Alex de Minaur still has a way to go before he poses a threat at the French Open.
Former world No.1 John Newcombe believes the 21-year-old needs to improve on his physicality before reaching his peak on the surface. De Minaur comes into the Grand Slam high in confidence after reaching the quarter-finals of the US Open in what was his best performance at a major so far in his career. He was knocked out of the tournament by eventual winner Dominic Thiem.
Although De Minaur’s preparations for the clay took a blow last week after he lost the first round of the Italian Open to German qualifier Dominik Koepfer. The world No.27 had a set and 3-0 lead over Koepfer before losing. He is not playing in any tournament this week leading up to Roland Garros.
“I’d have to see the draw, how it comes out, but it will be hard work for him,” Newcombe told the Australian Associated Press about de Minaur’s chances in Paris.
“He’s going to have to do a hell of a lot of work. If he got to the quarters, it would be a terrific effort.
“He’s not going to be physically where he needs to be, just bulking up a bit, until he’s 25, 26.
“But he’s got a good all-court game and he understands the game well, so there’s no reason he can’t be a pretty good late maturer (on clay).”
This year’s clay-court major will be the fourth time the Australian has played in the main draw. In his three previous appearances, de Minaur has only won one match which was against Bradley Klahn last year.
During a recent interview with atptour.com, the Next Gen star gave little away about his expectations for the clay this year given the revised schedule. The French Open is taking place just two weeks after New York due to the COVID-19 pandemic which brought the sport to a five-month standstill earlier this year.
“Realistically, you never know until you step out and play matches. It’s a very quick turnaround, something that has never happened to play such an important event after a slam. I’m taking it all in, doing as best as I can and we will have to see,” he said.
De Minaur has won three ATP titles and has scored four wins over top 10 players so far in his career. He is currently the only player from his country ranked in the world’s top 40 on the ATP Tour.
Novak Djokovic claims his 36th Masters 1000 title in Rome
Novak Djokovic came back from 0-3 down in the first set to beat Diego Schwartzman 7-5 6-3 after 1 hour and 53 minutes in the final of the Internazionali BNL d’Italia at the Foro Italico in Rome. Djokovic claimed his fifth title in the Eternal City and his 36th Masters 1000 trophy and his 81st career title. Djokovic has become the oldest Rome champion.
The World number 1 player extended his record in 2020 to an impressive record of 31 wins in 32 matches, including four titles at the Australian Open, Dubai, the Western and Southern Open in New York and Rome.
Djokovic dropped his serve three times and earned five breaks of serve.
Djokovic wasted a game point and dropped his serve, when he netted his backhand. Schwartzman hit four service winners in the second game to consolidate the break for 2-0.
Djokovic made a backhand error to face a break point in the third game. Schwartzman earned his second break to open up a 3-0 after 18 minutes, as Djokovic netted another backhand. Djokovic earned a break point chance and conveted it after a double fault from Schwartzman.
Djokovic held serve at 15 with an ace in the fifth game to claw his way back to 2-3. The Serbian star forced an error from Schwarzman to earn a breka point in the sixth game and got the break, when the Argentine netted a forehand. Djokovic held serve at 15 to take a 4-3 in the seventh game. Schwartzman hit a forehand down the line winner at 30-15 in the eighth game and held serve with a service winner to draw level to 4-4.
Djokovic saved a break point in the ninth game with a volley winner and held serve to take a 5-4 lead. Schwartzman saved a set point with a forehand winner and drew level to 5-5 after two deuces with a backhand the line winner.
Djokovic held serve after a deuce to take a 6-5 lead forcing Schwartzman to serve to stay in the set for the second time. Djokovic converted his third set point to win the opening set 7-5 after 70 minutes.
Schwartzman earned an early break at the start of the second set. Djokovic got the break back to draw level to 1-1 when Schwartzman sent a forehand wide.
Djokovic hit a winner at the net to hold serve in the third game. Schwartzman hit four winners in the fourth game to draw level to 2-2.
Djokovic saved two break points in the fifth game and held serve with a service winner to take a 3-2 lead. Schwartman held serve with a drop shot. Djokovic won his service game at love to take a 4-3 lead and broke serve at love in the eighth game with a backhand down the line winner. Djokovic held serve at love to close out the final.
“”It was a great week. A very challenging week. I don’t think I played my best tennis throughout the entire week, but I think I found my best tennis when I needed it the most in the decisive moments today, yesterday and in every match. That definitely makes me very satisfied and proud that I managed to find that fifth gear when it was most needed. Turning to Paris, I could not ask for a better tournament here in Rome. Another big title and i super pleased with it”, said Djokovic.
Stan Wawrinka Parts Way With Long-Time Coach Norman
Stan the man is on the look out for a new coach for the first time in almost a decade.
It is the end of an era for three-time Grand Slam champion Stan Wawrinka after he announced his split from coach Magnus Norman.
The former world No.3 confirmed on Monday that the two have decided to end their collaboration with ‘mutual consent’ following eight years working together on the Tour. Norman was last with Wawrinka at the Italian Open last week where the Swiss player lost his opening match to rising star Lorenzo Musetti. It is unclear as to exactly when the decision was made.
“After 8 great years together Magnus Norman and I have decided to part ways by mutual consent. We have had an amazingly strong, enjoyable and hugely successful partnership. We reached the height of this sport together and I want to thank him for helping me win everything that I could ever dream of winning,” Wawrinka said in a statement posted on Instagram.
44-year-old Norman is a former world No.2 player himself who reached the final of the French Open back in 2000. During his coaching career, he guided Wawrinka to various milestones in his career that includes 13 ATP titles with three of those being at Grand Slam level. The Swede has also been recognized by the ATP for his work with Wawrinka after winning the inaugural Coach of the Year award back in 2016.
“He’s been a great coach, friend and mentor and will always be a dear friend,” Wawrinka said in a tribute.
“I want to publicly thank him for all his hard work, dedication and commitment in making me a better player over the years. Winning three grand slams have been a life changing experience for me and I could not have done that without him. I wish him all the best in his next chapter in his life.”
The announcement from the world No.17 comes a week before the French Open starts. Wawrinka has been training on the clay for the past few weeks after deciding against travelling to North America to play in the US Open. Instead, he played in a couple Challenger events and won a trophy in Prague last month. Overall, he has achieved a win-loss record of 15-3 so far in 2020.
It is unclear as to who will be replacing Norman in Wawrinka’s team.
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