Stan Wawrinka: “I think my game is there. I'm playing great tennis. Physically I'm there. It's going to be tough, but I need to take the positive from already being in the semifinal” - UBITENNIS
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Stan Wawrinka: “I think my game is there. I’m playing great tennis. Physically I’m there. It’s going to be tough, but I need to take the positive from already being in the semifinal”

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TENNIS AUSTRALIAN OPEN – 30th of January 2015. N.Djokovic d. S.Wawrinka 7-6, 3-6, 6-4, 4-6, 6-0. An interview with Stan Wawrinka

Q. There were a lot of ups and downs in this match. How would you describe it?

STAN WAWRINKA: Describe the match? Strange. Not the best, for sure. I think there were a lot of up and down. Beginning conditions weren’t too good. It’s quite flying a little bit. Balls are not easy to control. Not much. It was not the best match, for sure. I don’t know. Next question (smiling).

Q. At one point you asked for eye drops.

STAN WAWRINKA: Nothing special. Just need it. Didn’t work well just after, but it was okay. Nothing special.

Q. Why do you think there were so many ups and downs? Both you and Novak seemed to have trouble keeping your best level.

STAN WAWRINKA: You know, at the beginning, as I say, was for me the first night session. Had to adapt a little bit the game. It’s quite fast this year. It’s not easy to control. Again, I think I’m physically well, playing well in general. Really happy with my level. It was mentally that I think I’m paying off the price to finish off the season with Davis Cup, not having a bigger off-season, trying to focus really well to start well the year with winning Chennai and being here trying to do the best. I told my coach before the match and already yesterday that I was mentally completely dead and no battery. Tough to focus on what I want to do. Tough to focus on my game. And that’s what happened today.

Q. Is it tough coming into this match knowing the last two times were classic epics so the bar was very high?

STAN WAWRINKA: No, for that, there’s no pressure for that. I’m surprised we went five sets again, even if the last one was 10 minutes. But, no, for sure we had some great battle here last two years. Today was strange match. He was there playing good enough to win and he deserve to win and play the final.

Q. What happened in the fifth set?

STAN WAWRINKA: Had few moments in the match that I could have take a little bit advantage in the game. I had the feeling that I was playing well. But, again, as I say, it’s tough for me to focus on what I wanted to do. In third set I had breakpoint. I should have broke the first game. I had easy backhand that the miss. In the fifth the same. With the wind, I had again chance to take advantage, but I was surprised that I came back in the fourth. I was telling my box it was tough for me to stay with him, to find a way to win points. Because I was just trying to fight and to make some good choice, but today I was just not there.

Q. You did break his serve quite a few times tonight. What was the key there?

STAN WAWRINKA: I’m not that bad as a tennis player. Maybe that’s why (smiling). I don’t know. For sure, you know, when you see the stats, I think he lost his serve once before tonight. Two years ago he didn’t lose his serve before playing, and I broke him in the second serve. It’s just that we know each other so well. We practice so many time together. In Grand Slam we had some big battle. In other tournaments he always killed me in the score. But, again, as I say, I think my game is there. I’m playing great tennis. Physically I’m there. It’s going to be tough, but I need to take the positive from already being in the semifinal.

Q. Do you think you’ll be taking a break since you’re mentally spent?

STAN WAWRINKA: I’m going to go home. I have one week before the next tournament. Should be fine. I’m going to see. I think I have a good schedule for the year. I try to have some moments when I can practice with my coach and fitness trainer, when I can have some holiday. So should be fine for the year again. I think it’s about the schedule for the year. Not what I’m going to do for the next six weeks, but how I see the next six months, nine months.

Q. Are you proud of what you’ve achieved here?

STAN WAWRINKA: As I say, as of right now I’m more disappointed to lose because I had the feeling that in the game I’m there. I’m playing well. Yeah, I have everything to win the match tonight, but I didn’t. That’s the reality. So I will see tomorrow when I wake up, when I’m going to leave. The next few days for sure. I’m happy with the way I start the season, the way I’m focused on the practice court every day, and trying to improve my game. I think I’m playing better than last year. The most important is I need to do everything possible to keep that level all the season and not only few tournaments.

Q. You had a couple of big tiebreaks in this tournament. The first two points in this one, I don’t know if you remember them.

STAN WAWRINKA: I remember my backhand.

Q. Do you think it was a crucial moment for you?

STAN WAWRINKA: In a five-set match, there are some crucial moments, for sure. It could have been crucial. But at the end of the day I lost that tiebreak. I was down very quickly. At the 4-3 break, I lost my serve Love-40. Again, I had the chance to break in the third. I had a chance to break in the fifth. I didn’t. That’s the reality.

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Roland Garros 2024: Rafael Nadal Faces Alexander Zverev In Blockbuster Opening Round

Rafael Nadal and Alexander Zverev will meet at Roland Garros in the first round with Andy Murray taking on Stan Wawrinka in the opening round.

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Rafael Nadal has been drawn against Rome champion Alexander Zverev in the opening round of Roland Garros.

The 14-time Roland Garros champion will most likely be making his last appearance at the event where he has such a great history at.

It’s been a mixed clay court season for Nadal who built gradual momentum in Madrid but suffered an early exit in Rome to Hubert Hurkacz.

Now the Spaniard has been drawn to take on the champion of Rome, Alexander Zverev, in the opening round.

The match is a repeat of the 2022 semi-final where Zverev broke his ankle losing almost a year of his career.

This contest headlines the second quarter of the draw which also features Karen Khachanov, Holger Rune and Daniil Medvedev.

In the other quarter of the top half of the draw, defending champion Novak Djokovic will begin his Roland Garros campaign against Pierre-Hughes Herbert.

There is also a potential third round clash with either Gael Monfils or Lorenzo Musetti for Djokovic, who is currently in Geneva gaining extra match practice ahead of the second Grand Slam of the season.

The Serb could have a repeat of last year’s final in the quarter-finals with Casper Ruud as the Norwegian begins his campaign against Jakub Mensik.

In the bottom half of the draw Jannik Sinner plays his first tournament since suffering a hip injury in Rome as he takes on Christopher Eubanks in the opening round.

Sinner could face Cameron Norrie in the third round with the Brit taking on Pavel Kotov in his opening round before playing the winner of the battle of the Grand Slam champions between Andy Murray and Stan Wawrinka.

Murray and Wawrinka will clash for the fourth time at Roland Garros with Wawrinka leading their head-to-head 2-1 in Paris.

This section also includes in-form players such as Hubert Hurkacz, Alejandro Tabilo and Rome finalist Nicolas Jarry.

Finally Carlos Alcaraz will begin his Roland Garros campaign against a qualifier before potentially playing Jack Draper in the second round.

Another exciting clash awaits Alcaraz in the third round in the form of Sebastian Korda with Andrey Rublev or Stefanos Tsitsipas being potential quarter-final opponents.

This is the full draw with Roland Garros beginning on Sunday.

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Alexander Zverev Secures Return To Top Four After Winning Italian Open

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Alexander Zverev has clinched his first Masters title since 2021 after downing Nicolas Jarry in straight sets at the Italian Open.

The world No.5 surged to a 6-4,7-5, victory at the Faro Italico to become the 10th player in the Open Era to win the Rome trophy on multiple occasions. He also won the tournament in 2017. Zverev’s latest win was aided by an impressive service display from the 27-year-old who also hit 15 winners against eight unforced errors. He is now 22-1 against players ranked outside the top five at the tournament with his only loss being to Matteo Berrettini five years ago.

“It means a lot. Winning my first (Masters) title and winning my first after my injury in Rome. Rome is a very special place for me,” the new champion said afterwards. 
“I said at the beginning of the week if Rome is the place of firsts for me I’m extremely happy about it. It’s a very special week.” 

Playing in his first Masters 1000 final since 2022, Zverev produced a serving masterclass throughout the opening set with the German winning 20 out of 21 points. In contrast, Jarry experienced more difficult but valiantly fought back with the Chilean saving two straight break points at 4-4. Eventually, the third seed sealed the opener two games later with the help of some costly shots coming from across the court. A deep shot towards the baseline was unsuccessfully returned by Jarry, handing Zverev a set point which he converted.

Continuing to pile the pressure on in the second set, Zverev had a double chance to break for a 3-1 lead but failed to capitalise on that opportunity. The opportunities continued to come and go. Back-to-back double faults from Jarry at 4-5 handed Zverev two championship points but once again he failed to take advantage. Eventually, he sealed victory two games later with the help of a forehand shot that Jarry returned out. Prompting Zverev to raise his hands in delight before later paying tribute to his rival. 

“He’s playing huge. You can see that by the opponents he beat and how he beat them,” he said of Jarry. 
“I told him if he continues playing like that he is going to have many more chances. I’m happy to be the winner.”

As a result of his Rome triumph, Zverev has secured a top-four seeding for the French Open. On Monday he will rise in the PIF ATP rankings to No.4 which will be his highest position since August 2022. During that same year, he sustained a serious ankle injury which sidelined him for months. 

“The focus is on Paris, that’s for sure. but let me enjoy this one for a day or so and then I will have my full focus on Paris,” said Zverev.

Zverev has now won six Masters 1000 titles which places him in joint-ninth on the all-time list along with Daniil Medvedev. 

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Novak Djokovic Accepts Geneva Wildcard Ahead Of Roland Garros

Novak Djokovic has accepted a wildcard into next week’s ATP 250 event in Geneva as he looks to improve his form ahead of Roland Garros.

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Novak Djokovic has shockingly accepted a wildcard into next week’s ATP 250 event in Geneva.

The world number one hasn’t had the best season so far having yet to reach a final at any of his events this season.

There was hope for Djokovic that his fortunes would change on clay and the Serb started his clay court season by reaching the semi-finals in Monte-Carlo before losing to Casper Ruud.

However Djokovic’s clay court hopes were dashed in Rome as he lost in the third round to in-form Chilean Alejandro Tabilo.

This has meant that Djokovic risks being undercooked for the second Grand Slam of the season at Roland Garros.

Therefore the Serb has had no option but to take a wildcard into next week’s ATP 250 in Geneva.

Djokovic will join Casper Ruud, Andy Murray, Denis Shapovalov and Taylor Fritz in next week’s event.

Next week’s appearance will be the first appearance in Geneva in Djokovic who will be the top seed in Switzerland.

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