Djokovic finally beat Nadal in Paris! - UBITENNIS
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Djokovic finally beat Nadal in Paris!

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TENNIS -Novak Djokovic beat 9-time French Open Rafa Nadal 7-5 6-3 6-1 in two hours and 26 minutes on Nadal’s 29th birthday in the eagerly awaited quarterfinal at the Roland Garros putting an end to the Spaniard’s winning streak of 39 consecutive matches in Paris  Diego Sampaolo

 

Djokovic is still in contention to become the 8th man to complete the Career Grand Slam. The Serbian player has scored his first win over Nadal at Grand Slam level since his triumph at the 2012 Australian Open. It was also the first time Djokovic has beaten Nadal in 7 meetings here in Paris.

Djokovic won eight of the first nine points to get an early break and then pulled away for 4-0. The crowd was in complete shock at Djokovic’s superior level of play and the sheer flatfootedness of Nadal at the beginning of the match. However, facing the possibility of 0-5, the Spanish legend converted on his 4th break point chance to claw his way back into the match for 5-5. It near appeared as though Djokovic had lost the momentum but he held serve comfortably for 6-5 and force Nadal to come up with spectacular plays to stay in the set. Nadal was able to save 5 set point but Djokovic remained determined and clinched the opening set on his 6th set point, 7-5 in 67 minutes. Djokovic had 19 winners alone in the set.

The second set went on serve until the 8th game when Djokovic broke serve for 5-3 before earning a fourth set point with a half-volley drop-shot which he converted for 6-3. It appeared as though all that energy that Nadal spent attempting the comeback in the first set proved critical as he was a touch slow. From the onset of the 3rd set, it was clear that Nadal was not up to the challenge that was Djokovic on the day. The Serbian again raced out to a 4-0 lead and this time, he remained steadfast in the task at hand. Down 1-5 and serving to stay in the match, Nadal double faulted on match point handing Djokovic the win 7-5 6-3 6-1 after 2 hours and 26 minutes.

Djokovic converted on four of his 11 break points and won 70 percent of his net points. This was his 27th consecutive victory this year. This win for Djokovic is historic as it was only the second defeat in 72 matches for Nadal in the Roland Garros. Before Djokovic the only other player able to beat Nadal in Paris was Robin Soderling in 2009. Nadal’s dominance stretched back to 2005 when he won the first of his 9 titles.

“It started already before the match. You go through more emotions than for any other match. Playing against Rafa at Roland Garros is a special thing. It’s a special mach. Tomorrow is a new day. I have to move on. It’s only the quarter finals and I want to fight for the title. Celebration can wait. I have to direct my thought to the semis”, said Djokovic.

Djokovic will face Andy Murray who became the first British player to reach three semifinals at the Roland Garros after beating David Ferrer in four sets with 7-6(4) 6-2 5-7 6-1 after three hours and 21 minutes. Murray clinched his 15th consecutive match on clay. He won his first two titles on this surface in Munich and Madrid. Djokovic leads 18-8 in their 26 encounters against Murray. It will be the fourth time they clash this year with Djokovic winning the three matches at Melbourne, Indian Wells and Miami.

In the first set where both players got three breaks of serve Murray fended off two set points as he was serving to stay in the set at 5-6 before winning the tie-break on his fourth set point. In the second set Murray broke twice and fended off all the three break points he faced to win 6-2. Ferrer bounced back from an early break down before fending off a match point while serving to stay in the set at 4-5. Ferrer, finalist in Paris in 2013, got the break in the 11th game to take a 6-5 lead before serving out for the third set for 7-5. Murray converted his third match point to cruise to 6-1 in the fourth set

“I was frustrated to lose the third set but I got off to a good start in the fourth set, so my frustration didn’t last long”, said Murray.

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Grigor Dimitrov – ‘Tennis Is A Microscopic Thing In The World Right Now’

The world No.19 speaks out about how he is coping during the tour suspension.

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Former grand slam semi-finalist Grigor Dimitrov has become the latest player to urge the governing bodies of tennis to make a united decision regarding when play will resume again.

 

The ATP and WTA Tours are currently suspended until June due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Although it is likely that the suspension will be extended further with rumours that Wimbledon will be cancelled for the first time since the second world war later this week. Dimitrov’s last tournament was at the Acapulco Open in Mexico, where he reached the semi-finals before losing in straight sets to eventual champion Rafael Nadal.

“Tennis is a microscopic thing in the world right now. The ATP supervisors I’ve talked to in recent days have a variety of theories, but for the time being, we can really only guess if we’re being honest.” Tenniskafe quoted Dimitrov as saying during an interview with bTV.
“The tournaments are cancelled, but we have a big luxury in tennis – there is always next week. Yes, it is very difficult right now, you have seen the Olympics cancelled. The only thing that is at the forefront is to go through this situation we are in, and then start rebuilding. “

The world No.19 is currently residing in California during the lockdown. Describing the situation where he is as ‘more casual’ compared to other parts of the world. California is where the Indian Wells tennis tournament was set to take place earlier this month before it was cancelled.

“In my opinion all federations and players, no matter what rank they are, must come together and make a general decision. Because it’s really not easy at the moment to talk to everyone about points, tournaments, competitions … But now other things are really more important – to be safe, to be healthy and to go through this thing.” He said.

During the suspension, the 28-year-old is keeping himself busy in other ways. Recently he has signed up for an online course with Harvard Business School. Becoming the latest of a series of players to do so. He also manages to keep in touch with his fellow rivals on the tour thanks to the world of social media.

“One of the first players I wrote to was Fabio (Fognini) because he was in Italy. Everyone is on Instagram, we know everyone what they do every minute.”

When the restrictions related to the pandemic comes to an end, Dimitrov has vowed to return back to Europe as he outlines the first thing he would do.

“I just want to go back to Europe. Whether it will be in Bulgaria or in Monaco – I do not know. I certainly want to go home, gather all my relatives and just spend time together. I’ve been in the US for over a month now. As things currently look, there will certainly be another two months. Hopefully it will be faster, but I just want to go home and be with my loved ones.” He concluded.

In the fight against Covid-19 in his home country, Dimitrov has made a donation to a hospital in Haskovo. The city where he was born.

Dimitrov has started the 2020 season with a win-loss record of 7-5. Besides his run to the semifinals in Acapulco, he also reached the second round at the Australian Open and Rotterdam. He has been ranked as high as third in the world.

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Tennis Could Be Suspended For ‘A Long Time,’ Warns Millman

The top 50 player isn’t expecting to play on the tour anytime soon.

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Australian player John Millman has indicated that he believes the current suspension of the ATP Tour is all but certain to be extended in the coming weeks.

 

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, both the ATP and WTA Tour have been suspended until at least June 8th. Although those in change of both of those governing bodies have previously admitted they are uncertain as to when play will resume. ATP chairman Andrea Gaudenzi has said that ‘it is unknown at this time’ as to when men’s tournaments will resume. Meanwhile, Steve Simon has echoed a similar view during an interview with The Tennis Channel.

Speaking about the current situation, world No.43 Millman said the sport is in a difficult situation due to its global reach with both tournaments and players based around the world. For example the Australian started his season by playing four tournaments in four different countries across three continents within five weeks.

“We’re going to have to be pretty unified in terms of our recovery process before the tour can resume,” Millman told The Age.
“Maybe the tournament location has got the COVID-19 situation under wraps and then manage to contain it, but if someone’s flying in from South America, say, and their country hasn’t got a hold of it, then the tournament can’t (go ahead).
“You can’t have the tournament going when only certain players can get there. I think that’s
where the problems lie.”

The 30-year-old didn’t speculate as to when he and his rivals will be returning to the court, but believes it could be a while. During the coming week the fate of Wimbledon will be decided at an emergency meeting. The All England Club is pondering the motion of cancelling this year’s tournament. A move that has never been taken during peacetime. Wimbledon has been scrapped a total of 10 times during the first and second world wars.

“It’s almost like we have to have a vaccine or the virus has to run its course before there’ll be any let-up there.” Millman commented.

Besides trying to maintain fitness, many players like Millman are in a difficult situation financially due to a lack of income. He has managed to earn $290,705 on the tour this year before the suspension. This is the 44th highest total on the men’s tour. In total, 131 players have surpassed the $100,000 mark. Although the earnings don’t take into account travel costs, coaching, accommodation and so on.

“I just can’t see us playing tennis for a long time and now it’s a matter of trying to stay (the) fight, trying to scrape by a little bit while not much is coming in,” he said.
“You’re used to a bit of money coming in and obviously that’s not the case anymore. Yeah, it’s tough. It’s just not easy. You try and make do.
“But I don’t want to be a sob story, that’s for sure, because I know Australians are doing it a lot tougher than me.”

Millman reached the third round of the Australian Open earlier this year before losing to Roger Federer in a five-set thriller.

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Jamie Murray Speaks Out On Wimbledon Dilemma

The two-time mixed doubles champion shares his thoughts about the current situation and the problems that could arise.

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Former world No.1 doubles player Jamie Murray says he is unsure how much longer Wimbledon can be delayed this season ahead of a crucial meeting on its future next week.

 

The All England Club is set to hold an emergency meeting to make a final decision as to what to do with this year’s tournament. Including the possibility of cancelling the event for the first time since 1945. The tennis calendar has been brought to a standstill due to the covid-19 pandemic. There have been more than 500,000 cases of Coronavirus worldwide, according to John Hopkins University.

Speaking about Wimbledon’s potential decision during an interview with BBC Scotland’s The Nine, Murray admits that organisers face a difficult decision. Saying it would pose as a big challenge for them to reschedule the event. Both the ATP and WTA are currently reviewing their calendars with the French Open now taking place a week after the US Open.

“I don’t know how long they could push it back,” said Murray.
“They’re desperate to have their event on, it’s still over three months away and a lot can change in that time,” he added.

Murray has featured in the doubles main draw at Wimbledon every year since his debut back in 2006. He has won the Mixed doubles trophy twice in 2007 (with Jelena Jankovic) and 2017 (with Martina Hingis). The 34-year-old currently has a doubles ranking of 34th.

“For them, optics don’t necessarily look great, I guess, if there’s sporting events all over the world getting cancelled and they’re trying to crack on with things.” He commented on the scheduling difficulties.
“There’s a lot of other stakeholders, a lot of other tournaments to consider. Even things like daylight for the tournament. Once the tournament gets put back, there’s less and less daylight. When you play at Wimbledon normally, you can play until 10 at night.”

The UK is currently in a lockdown with members of the public only allowed to leave their houses for specific reasons. Furthermore, 1.5 million people have been advised to self-isolate for 12 weeks. The government is hopeful that they can flatten the spread of the disease within this period, which is extremely close to the Wimbledon start date.

According to AFP News, any decision to scrap this year’s tournament is likely to have a massive financial impact. Between 2017-2018 Wimbledon made an estimated pre-tax profit of $52 million with over 90% of that invested back into British tennis. Furthermore, the BBC could also suffer a big blow. It is reported that the broadcaster pays in the region of $72 million for the TV rights.

It is unclear as to what day the decision will be made next week. Since its creation in 1877, Wimbledon has been cancelled a total of 10 times before. All of which happened during the first world war (1915-1918) and second (1940-1945). The event has never been delayed or scrapped during peacetime.

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