Wawrinka and Tsonga score upsets to play French semis - UBITENNIS
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Wawrinka and Tsonga score upsets to play French semis

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TENNIS – Stan Wawrinka (8) beat Roger Federer (2) 6-4 6-3 7-6(4) on the Suzanne Langlen Court on a sunny but windy afternoon in Paris to qualify for the semifinals of the Roland Garros. The Lausanne player has reached the semifinals of the French Open for the first time in his career and his second semifinal of the year after the Australian Open last January. Diego Sampaolo

 

“Stan the Man” as he is commonly known amongst his fans, had won just 2 of his previous 18 head-to-head matches with his countryman. Most recently, he lost their last match in the Rome semifinal in May and had never beaten his compatriot in their previous three Grand Slam matches including the quarterfinals at Wimbledon last year.

This time Wawrinka took control of the match from the start and never relinquished until the end. Wawrinka earned a break point in the opening game of the match but Federer managed to save it as it took him near 7 minutes to hold serve. Federer again had to face break points in the 3rd game. This time around Wawrinka broke serve to love in the third game and pulled away for a 4-2 lead. Federer never recovered from this early deficit. Federer saved the first set point with a serve-and volley but Wawrinka converted the second set point to take it 6-4.

Wawrinka won four consecutive games from 2-3 in the second set with a break at 3-3. The 2014 Australian Open champion got a double break to clinch the second set with 6-3. Through 2 sets, Federer had yet to break serve. The third set went on serve with Federer serving to stay in the match down 4-5 and 5-6. The decider came down to the tie-break where Federer took a 2-1 lead. This is about as much of a lead Federer would get as Wawrinka was on a roll and raced out to a 6-3 lead. The end was drawing near for Federer who only save one of the match points. Wawrinka converted on his second opportunity to score a rare straight sets victory over Federer at a major.

Federer, who fought back from two sets down nine times in his career, never broke Wawrinka for the entire match. He was 0/4 on break points whereas Wawrinka broke Federer 3 times for the match. This was the first time Federer has failed to break serve in a Grand Slam match since his defeat in the fourth round of the 2002 US Open; near 13 years ago. It was the first time that Wawrinka beat Federer in a Grand Slam tournament. Federer now leads 4-1 in their Grand Slam matches.

Stan made it tough. When you lose there is always a bunch of things, the opponent, the conditions, the court and it’s the same for both guys. I am looking forward to what’s coming ahead now.There is nothing positive about losing today because I don’t need the extra days but I will use them with my family and have a great time with them and recover my body. I am looking forward to Halle and Wimbledon. I want to win it and I feel like my game is good. It’s been solid. I have just got to keep it up now”, said Federer

In the semifinal Wawrinka will face Jo-Wilfried Tsonga who edged past Kei Nishikori in five sets with 6-1 6-4 4-6 3-6 6-3. Nishikori fought back from two sets down to draw level and force the match to the fifth set. Wawrinka and Tsonga are tied 3-3 in their head-to-head matches. It will be the third time that Wawrinka and Tsonga played at the Roland Garros. In both matches they played the fifth set. Wawrinka won in 2011, while Tsonga prevailed one year later.

Tsonga held his serve to 15 on his opening service game before breaking serve in the next game. The Frenchman got his second break to open up a 4-0 lead. Nishikori won his first game but was broken again to lose the first set 6-1.

Tsonga broke again at the start of the second set. The Frenchman got the double break en route to winning three consecutive games to serve for the set at 5-2.  However, the match was interrupted for near 30 minutes at this point when piece of metal sheeting from an advertisement board fell down into a section of the crowd. There were a few minor injuries. Upon resumption of the match, Nishikori recovered one of the breaks and held serve to be down 4-5. Tsonga had another chance to close out the set and he recovered from a 0-30 hole by winning 4 consecutive points and took the set 6-4.

The third set went on serve until the ninth game. After saving three break points Nishikori held his serve in a hard-fought ninth game which lasted 13 minutes and featured 18 points for 5-4. He then went on to break Tsonga in the 10th game as he served to stay in the set. The match was now 2-1 sets Tsonga. Finally it looked like Nishikori was ready to play a match as for most of it, he looked lethargic and uninterested as he committed error and error. In the 4th set, Nishikori continued building the momentum as he broke Tsonga early for 3-1. Tsonga earned a break point chance at 5-3 but Nishikori saved it. Nishikori hit an inside-in forehand to force the match to the fifth set. Tsonga recovered from 15-40 to get the break for 3-1 in the fifth set, At 5-3 Tsonga clinched the win with an inside-out forehand

Tsonga, who beat Tomas Berdych in four sets in the fourth round, beat two top-5 players in a Grand Slam for the first time in his career. Tsonga will play his second semifinal here two years after losing to David Ferrer in 2013.

Tomorrow Novak Djokovic will take on Rafa Nadal in a blockbuster quarter final. The other quarter final match will be played between David Ferrer and Andy Murray

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Christian Garin extends his winning streak to ten consecutive matches in Santiago de Chile

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Chile’s Christian Garin beat Alejandro Davidovich Fokina 6-2 0-6 7-6 (7-4) in the quarter final in Santiago de Chile after two hours to extend his winning streak to 10 consecutive matches including six three-set matches. Garin, who won two titles this year in Cordoba and Rio de Janeiro, will take on Brazil’s Thiago Seyboth Wild in the quarter final.

 

Garin converted on six of his seven break points. The Chilean started the opening set with three consecutive breaks and closed it out with a hold at love thanks to an ace in the eighth game.

Davidovich Fokina broke three times to take a bagel in the second set. Garin fended off two break points at 2-3 and earned a break at 15 in the seventh game to take a 4-3 lead. Garin wasted two match points at 5-4 as he was serving at 5-4. Alejandro Fokina broke back with a drop shot to draw level to 5-5. Garin got another break in the 11th game after a double fault from Davidoch Fokina. The Spanish Next Gen player broke back in the 12th game to set up a tie-break. Garin clinched the breaker 7-4 with a forehand winner.

“This is a very important tournament for me. I hope I can play here every year. I want to compete well here after winning in the past two tournaments. I have won several matches. I have a lot of confidence. I feel the responsibility of always winning and much more in Chile. The crowd’s support helped me a lot. After the second set I started to feel pain in my back. I wasn’t feeling good, but the people’s support was important. It was nice to see the crowd helping me when I came down”,said Garin.

Thiago Seyboth Wild edged Argentina’s Juan Ignacio Londero 7-6 (9-7) 6-4 in 1 hour and 45 minutes. Seyboth Wild never faced a break point and converted one of his six break points to clinch the win in straight sets. Londero saved all three break points in the opening set, including two set points at 5-6 to set up a tie-break. The Argentine earned a set point with a service winner.

Seyboth Wild fended off the set point with an ace. Londero did not convert a second set point at 7-7 after a forehand error. Thiago Seyboth sealed the tie-break with a backhand down the line winner. The Brazilian player earned a break in the third game of the second set with a forehand down the line winner and lost six points in five service games and closed out the match with a service winner in the 10th game.

Seyboth Wild reached the second round in Rio de Janeiro earlier this month

Brazil’s Thiago Monteiro beat Roberto Carballes Baena 6-1 6-4 after 1 hour and 23 minutes. The Brazilian player saved all three break points chances and broke three times to reach his second quarter final of the season after Buenos Aires.

Monteiro will face Spain’s Albert Ramos Vinolas, who beat lucky loser Juan Pablo Varillas 7-6 (7-3) 6-2 in one hour and 39 minutes. The Spanish player rallied from 3-5 down in the first set and fended off a set point at 4-5 to clinch the tie-break of the opening set 7-3.

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Novak Djokovic saves three match points to reach the final in Dubai

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This year’s Australian Open champion and four-time Dubai winner Novak Djokovic came back from losing the first set to beat Gael Monfils 2-6 7-6 (10-8) 6-1 after 2 hours and 35 minutes at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Tournament. He will face Stefanos Tsitsipas in tomorrow’s final.

 

Monfils wasted a chance of defeating Djokovic for the first time in 16 head-to-head matches, when he did not convert three match points at 6-3 in the tie-break of the second set.

Djokovic dropped his serve three times in the first and second set and went down a set and a break in the second set.

Monfils dropped six points on his serve and broke Djokovic twice to win the first set 6-2. Djokovic saved a break point in the first game of the opening set before dropping his serve in a marathon third game, when he hit his backhand long. Monfils hit a service winner to open up a 3-1 lead. The Frenchman earned another break in the seventh game after a drop shot error from Djokovic. Monfils sealed the opening set 6-2 with a service winner in the eighth game after 45 minutes.

Monfils went up a set and a break in the third game of the second set at love after a loose forehand from Djokovic. Monfils earned a break with a forehand crosscourt winner. Djokovic broke straight back to draw level to 3-3 in the sixth game after Monfils netted a forehand. Djokovic held serve with an ace for 4-3. Monfils won his service game in the eighth game to draw level to 4-4. Djokovic held his third consecutive service game to take a 5-4 lead, but he wasted a set point in the next game with a loose forehand.

Djokovic earned five set points in the second set, but Monfils saved them to set up a tie-break. Monfils forced an error from Djokovic to take a 4-2 lead and hit a backhand down the line winner in the eighth game. Monfils brought up three match points with a forehand winner, but Djokovic saved them to draw level to 6-6.

Monfils fended off a set point at 6-7 with a service winner. Djokovic earned a mini-break, but he made a forehand error in the next point. Djokovic earned his eighth set point at 8-8 and converted it, as Monfils made his sixth double fault.

Djokovic earned two consecutive breaks in the third and fifth games and closed out the match with his third break at 5-1 in the seventh game with a forehand winner to complete the come-back setting up a final against Stefanos Tsitsipas.

“It’s anybody game really. Stefanos has won eight matches in a row now from last week in France winning the Marseille title, now playing more or less every single day, which is quite impressive. It’s not easy. I hope I can recover. I hope I can be atm y best be at my best because I need to start better than I have tonight. Hopefully I can get a title. Today I just wasn’t taking my chances when I was having rallies on those first five set points. That kind of turned around from 3-6 in the tie-break. From that moment onwards I felt I was going through the ball better”, said Djokovic.  

 

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Stefanos Tsitsipas reaches the final in Dubai for the second consecutive year

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Stefanos Tsitsipas beat Daniel Evans 6-2 6-3 in 1 hour and 21 minutes in the semifinal of the Dubai Duty Free Championships to reach the final at this tournament for the second consecutive year. Tsitsipas will play his second consecutive final one week after lifting the Open 13 Trophy in Marseille.

 

Tsitsipas converted on four of his ten break points and did not face a break point. The Greek player has dropped just one of the 17 sets he has played since arriving in Marseille last week.

Tsitsipas earned his first break with a backhand winner in the fifth game of the opening set to take a 3-2 lead and consolidated it with a hold at love. Tsitsipas converted his second break point in a three-deuce seventh game after a forehand error from Evans before claiming the first set in the eighth game with an ace after 34 minutes.

Evans saved four break points at the start of the second set. Tsitsipas earned an early break in the third game of the second set to take a 2-1 lead and backed it up with a service winner for 3-1.

Tsitsipas held serve for 5-3 before closing out the second set with his fourth break in the ninth game.

Tsitsipas finished runner-up to Roger Federer in the final of last year’s edition of the Dubai tournament. Tomorrow the Athens native player will face either Novak Djokovic or Gael Monfils.

“I just managed to stay solid throughout the whole match. I didn’t have massive breakdowns and just played a quality of tennis which I enjoyed. I am really impressed by the quality of my game today and I really hope to bring the same and probably better in the next round”, said Tsitsipas.

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