Day 3 Wimbledon 2015: Djokovic, Wawrinka, Cilic moved on as Nishikori withdrew - UBITENNIS
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Day 3 Wimbledon 2015: Djokovic, Wawrinka, Cilic moved on as Nishikori withdrew

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 TENNIS – Novak Djokovic (1) beat Jarkko Nieminen 6-4 6-2 6-3 in the 2nd round of Wimbledon on an unusual very hot day with temperatures rising to 34°C. The defending champion will take on Bernard Tomic (27) in the third round. Stan Wawrinka (4) beat Victor Estrella-Burgos in 2 sets with 6-3 6-4 7-5. Grigor Dimitrov (11) also won in three sets with 7-6(8) 6-2 7-6(2) against Steve Johnson Diego Sampaolo

Nieminen, who is playing his last Wimbledon, started the 1st set with a break thanks to 3 winners. Djokovic initially had trouble reading the Nieminen serve but finally managed to break serve in the 6th game. Djokovic closed out the set 6-4 when Nieminen made a couple of double faults. Djokovic broke twice the 2nd set for 6-2 before cruising to 6-3 in the 3rd set.

“I am glad with the way I am playing and I am getting into form. As the tournament progresses, hopefully I will be able to elevate the level of my performances,” said Djokovic

Wawrinka defeated Estrella-Burgos 6-3 6-4 7-5 in an hour and 31 minutes. Wawrinka broke serve at 4-3 in the first set, at 4-4 in the second set and at 5-5 in the third. Wawrinka faced two break point chances at 4-5 0-30 in the third set but Estrella Burgos did not convert them. Shortly afterwards Wawrinka converted his first match point. Wawrinka made 28 unforced errors of which 6 were double faults.

Stan the Man set up a 3rd round match against Fernando Verdasco who battled past Dominic Thiem (32) with 5-7 6-4 5-7 6-3 6-4, the second 5-setter of the tournament for the Spaniard. The 1st set went on serve until 5-5 when Verdasco committed 2 double faults and dropped his serve. Thiem closed out the set. The 2nd set was similar to the 1st as it went on serve until the 10th game when Verdasco broke serve to take the set. Verdasco made too many mistakes in the 3rd set to be broken in the 11th game. Thiem again served it out to take a 2-1 sets lead. Thiem did not convert a break point chance at the start of the 4th set and Verdasco broke in the 6th game to win the 4th set with 6-3. Thiem bounced back in the 5th set to take a 3-1 lead but was broken back in the next game. Verdasco clinched the decisive break in the eighth game before closing out on his next service game with a backhand passing shot.

Grigor Dimitrov (11) overcame Steve Johnson 7-6(8) 6-2 7-6(2). The tie-break of the opening set was a close fight. Both players held serve until Dimitrov got a mini-break as he was leading 9-8. The Bulgarian star broke serve twice to clinch the second set with 6-2. In the third set Johnson earned a set point on Dimitrov’s serve but the Bulgarian saved it with his first serve winner. Dimitrov dominated the tie-break 7-2 points.

“I loved out there. I enjoyed it. It was a great day to play tennis. I knew what to expect from Johnson. We have played each other a couple of times and also practised together,” said Dimitrov. Dimitrov will take on Richard Gasquet (21) who beat fellow Frenchman Kenny De Schepper 6-3 6-0 6-3.

Another semifinalist from last year Milos Raonic (7) battled past Tommy Haas 6-0 6-2 6-7(5) 7-6(4). The Canadian hit a 145 mph, the third fastest serve at Wimbledon, and fended off all three break points he faced. Raonic will face last year’s quarterfinalist Nick Kyrgios (26) who beat Juan Monaco 7-6(5) 6-3 6-4 on a match where he did not face any break point chances.

“Playing on Court 1 in Wimbledon at my age, my career was very special. I am not going to forget it, that’s for sure,” said Raonic

Marcos Baghdatis, Australian Open finalist in 2006, fought back from two sets down to battle past World Number 120 John Millman from Australia 6-7(5) 2-6 6-3 6-2 6-4. Both players traded breaks five times between the 5th and the 10th games. The 1st set came down to the tie-break. Baghdatis got a mini-break at the start of the tie-break but Millman broke twice before closing out on the third set point. Millman broke serve twice in the fifth and the seventh games to take the second set with 6-2. Millman broke serve in the first game of the third set and opened up a 2-0 lead but Baghdatis broke serve twice in the fourth and in the eighth games to clinch the third set with 6-3.

Baghdatis broke at the start of the start of the fourth set and got a double break in the eighth game before closing out on the third set point. In the fifth-set battle Baghdatis broke serve in the third game. Millman failed to convert a break point in the sixth game. Baghdatis wasted two match points on Millman’s serve before closing out the match with 6-4

Marin Cilic (9), last year’s quarterfinalist, battled past Rikardas Berankis 6-3 4-6 7-6 (8-6) 4-6 7-5. Cilic started well winning the first set with 6-3 but Berankis broke serve in the 10th game to win the second set with 6-4. Cilic won the third set at the tie-break with 8-6 but committed too many mistakes allowing Berankis to win the fourth set and force the match to the fifth set. Berankis earned two break points at 5-5 but Cilic saved them. Cilic clinched a hard-fought fifth set with 7-5 setting up a third round match against John Isner.

Kei Nishikori (5) withdrew from the tournament before his match against Santiago Giraldo due to a left calf injury which forced him to retire from the semifinal against Andreas Seppi in Halle.

“It got better last week before the first match. I thought it was going to be okay but in the last match against Simone Bolelli in the fifth set I was hurting too much. I tried to warm up today when I was running and walking. I decided not to play today”, said Nishikori

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Jack Draper Wins In Stuttgart, Potentially Faces Andy Murray in Round Two

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Jack Draper – ATP Monaco di Baviera 2024 (foto via Twitter @atptour)

Britain’s Jack Draper tight first round win headlined the opening day’s results at the Boss Open 2024 in Stuttgart – and possibly faces a second-round match with Andy Murray who takes on Marcos Giron tomorrow.

Less than 24 hours from the last ball being hit at Roland Garros, the ATP Tour had already switched surfaces onto the grass, and 22-year-old Draper was well tested but ultimately came through in two tie-breakers over Sebastian Ofner.

The sixth seed’s 7-6, 7-6 win contained just one break of serve each, both coming in the second set, as serve dominated proceedings on the faster grass courts in Germany.

While the Austrian won 75% on his first serve, Draper won a whopping 89% behind his first delivery as well as hitting eight aces. These kind of service stats will surely take him far during the grass court season.

“I thought it was a really good match,” Eurosport quoted Draper saying after his match. 
“Both of us played really clean tennis, executing really well.
“When it came down to it, I’m glad I competed really well and got over the line – it’s good to be back on the grass as well.”

There were also wins for Germany’s Yannick Hanfmann who won 6-3, 6-3 over wildcard Henri Squire, while compatriot Dominik Koepfer won in three sets over China’s Zhizhen Zhang 4-6, 7-6, 7-6. 

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Carlos Alcaraz Still Owns A Magical Racket

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The legend of Carlos Alcaraz and his magical racket lives on.

The 21-year-old Spaniard executed one magical shot after another with his racket and legs  Sunday afternoon in the French Open final. That bit of magic spelled defeat for Germany’s Alexander Zverev.

This was a final to remember, one of the great matches of all the Grand Slams. It just wasn’t in the cards for the 26-year-old Zverev to finally win a Grand Slam title.

HE HAD IT, THEN HE DIDN’T

Both players seemed to play a game of “he had it and then he didn’t.”

Alcaraz appeared to have everything under control in the first set, but Zverev rushed through the second set and then made a comeback from 5-2 down in the third set to win five straight games.

Zverev had everything going for him when he started the fourth set with a two-set advantage. It appeared that all the 6-6 Zverev had to do was to continue playing his masterful game of big serves and mighty ground strokes.

But Zverev couldn’t get started in the fourth set until he was down 4-0. So much for a smooth and easy ride to a Grand Slam title. By then, the magic of Alcaraz was heating up.

MAGIC OF ALCARAZ HEATING UP

Zverev still had his chances, even when he fell behind 2-1 in the fifth set. He had to feel pretty good about his chances when he took a triple break point lead against Alcaraz’s serve and appeared ready to even the set at 2-2. Even after Carlos came up with a winner to bring the  game score to double break point.

Zverev still was ready to even the entire match.

That’s when everything seemed to go haywire for the German, while all the while, Alcaraz was able to repeatedly come up with his magical shots as the Spaniard made critical shots that looked almost impossible to make.

ALCARAZ HEADED FOR GREATNESS

Everything for Zverev was lost in the magical racket of Alcaraz.

What was then initially called a game-ending Alcaraz double fault and a 2-2 deadlock quicky reversed itself and Alcaraz stayed alive by winning the next three points while taking a 3-1 advantage.

Zverev did get back to a 3-2 deficit and had a break point in the sixth game, but that was it for the hopes of Zverev. The last two games went rather easily in favor of Alcaraz to wrap up a 6-3, 2-6, 5-7, 6-1, 6-2 victory for Alcaraz.

That moved the Spaniard to a higher level of success on the ATP Tour. He became the youngest man to win Grand Slam titles on all of the different surfaces, clay, grass and hard courts.

Carlos Alcaraz and his magical racket appear to be headed for greatness.

James Beck was the 2003 winner of the USTA National Media Award  for print media. A 1995 MBA graduate of The Citadel, he can be reached at Jamesbecktennis@gmail.com. 

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Tsitsipas Brothers Hit With Trio Of Fines At French Open

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Stefanos Tsitsipas and his brother Petros have been fined more than 20,000 euros for multiple violations of the coaching rules at this year’s French Open. 

The brothers received a financial penalty during three different matches that they played in. Two of those were in the second and third rounds of the men’s doubles tournament. Furthermore, Stefanos was also penalised during his singles quarter-final match against Carlos Alcaraz, which he lost in straight sets. According to French newspaper L’Equipe, all three of those fines were issued as a result of coaching rules being broken.

Ironically, coaching is allowed during matches at the French Open but certain rules must be followed. ‘Verbal’ coaching can only be issued from the coaches and their team if they are sitting in the designated player’s box. Instructions must be limited to a few words and can only be given if the player is in the same half of the court as their coach. Although non-verbal coaching is allowed regardless of what side the player is on. Finally, players can’t start a conversation with their coach unless it is during a medical break, a bathroom break or when their opponent is changing clothes.

However, the Tsitsipas brothers have been found in violation of these rules, which is likely due to their animated father in the stands who is also their coach. Apostolos Tsitsipas has been given coaching violations in the past at other events, including the 2022 Australian Open. 

The value of the fines are €4,600 and €9,200 for the Tsitsipas brothers in the doubles, as well as an additional €7,400 just for Stefanos in the singles. In total, the value of their fines is €21,200. However, the penalty is unlikely to have an impact on the duo whose combined earnings for playing in this year’s French Open amount to roughly €495,000. 

So far in the tournament, the highest single fine to be issued this year was against Terence Atmane who hit a ball out of frustration that struck a fan in the stands. Atmane, who later apologised for his actions, managed to avoid getting disqualified from the match. Instead, he was fined €23,000. 

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