Top women's seeds being dispersed out of the tournament - UBITENNIS
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Top women’s seeds being dispersed out of the tournament

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US Open – August 31, 2015 marked the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina which dissipated off the American Gulf Coast back in 2005.  In this time a lot of Americans and folks around the world are remembering the devastation and destruction of that natural disaster. Yet it seems eerily striking that looking at the 2015 US Open women’s draw today, that  one can say that a near similar type of disaster has occurred as so many top seeds are gone from the draw. Of the 32 seeded players in the women’s draw, 10 have not made it out of the first round and all matches have not been completed.

Perhaps it was a sign of things to come when Maria Sharapova (3) pulled out just before the start of the event. She cited a plaguing leg injury as the reason why she could not compete at this year’s event. When actual play began, things only got worse. Ana Ivanovic (7) was dismissed by Dominika Cibulkova in 3 sets 3-6 6-3 3-6. Next came Karolina Pliskova (8) who was just crowned the winner of the 2015 US Open Series winner on the women’s side. She was vying for a chance at $1 million dollar bonus money had she been able to lift the winner’s trophy. However, she was summarily dismissed by American Anna Tatishvili 2-6 1-6 and with it that lucrative opportunity gone.

It might have been no real surprise when Svetlana Kuznetsova (30) was knocked out of the tournament by Kristina Mladenovic 3-6 5-7 as the Kuznetsova has not played a competitive match since the French Open in the spring. However, it was bit of a shock when both Carla Suarez-Navarro (10) and Jelena Jankovic (21) went out of the tournament. Considering all things, Suarez-Navarro losing to Denisa Allertova 1-6 (5)6-7 may not be such a huge upset. The Spaniard came into these championships on a 6-match losing streak, having not won a match at any of the three summer hardcourt tournaments she played. In fact, the last time she won a match was mid-June when she beat Kuznetsova at Birmingham. Therefore this result was not in and of itself surprising. However, Jankovic came into these championships looking good as she made it to the semifinals of Cincinnati before losing to Simona Halep. She went out to French wild card Oceane Dodin 6-2 5-7 3-6. Jankovic was not the only player who came into this tournament with some steam behind their name. Sloane Stephens (29) who just collected her first WTA title at CitiOpen in Washington DC, was looking to make a name for herself. However, she lost in straight sets to fellow American Coco Vandeweghe, 4-6 3-6.

One might have expected that things would have calm down on Day 2 but within 2 hours of he start of play, two more women’s seeds were ousted. Lucie Safarova (6) who recently made it to her first major final at the French Open was knocked out by Lesia Tsurenko. Safavora lost 4-6 1-6 in 65 minutes. She would later state that she was suffering from an abdominal tear which occurred in the New Haven final last Saturday. This affected her ability to serve on the day. Semifinalist Timea Bacsinszky (14) also lost to Barbora Styrcova 5-7 0-6 extending her match losing streak to 4. Olga Govortsova just upset Irina-Carmila Begu (28) 6-1 0-6 7-6.

Interestingly enough, on the men’s side, despite the huge upset of Kei Nishikori (4) going out to Benoit Paire early on the opening day, there has been no major blows to the men’s top seed.  Gael Monfils (16) had to retire from his match due to injury.

The men’s draw just lost another big seed as American Donald Young just knocked out the 11th seed  Gilles Simon (11) 2-6 4-6 6-4 6-4 6-4.

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Andy Murray Makes Retirement Hint After 500th Hard Court Win In Dubai

Andy Murray won his 500th hard court match in Dubai, placing him fifth on the all-time list.

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Andy Murray further hinted at retirement after securing a 500th hard court win of his career in Dubai.

The former world number one picked up his second win of the year with a 4-6 7-6(5) 6-3 victory over Denis Shapovalov.

In typical Andy Murray fashion, the Brit came back from a set down to defeat the out-of-sorts Canadian as he progressed to the second round.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RUVj537F-wQ

The win means Murray now has 500 career wins on a hard court and that is an achievement the world number 67 is proud of, “It’s not bad,” Murray told the ATP website as he sits fifth on the all-time list of hard court wins.

“Obviously hard court has been a great surface for me over the years and 500 is a lot of matches so I’m very proud of that. There are not many players that have done that, so great to get to 500 before I’m done.”

However those post-match comments weren’t the most shocking ones as Murray once again hinted at retirement this season.

The Brit has made subtle remarks that this year may be his last one but Murray’s comments today suggests that he may have already made his decision, “I probably don’t have too long left but I’ll do as best as I can these last few months,” Murray was quoted by ESPN as saying.

“I still love competing and still love the game but it gets harder and harder to compete the older you get, to keep your body fit and fresh.”

If the end is near for Murray than the Brit will look to end his career on a high for the next few months.

Before thinking about retirement Murray will look to go further in Dubai when he takes on either Ugo Humbert or Gael Monfils in the second round.

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Perspective And Fatigue: The Two Sides Of Iga Swiatek’s Dubai Defeat

Iga Swiatek spoke about perspective and fatigue after her semi-final exit in Dubai.

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Iga Swiatek showed two sides to her defeat in Dubai as the world number one surprisingly failed to win the title despite being the favourite in the semi-finals.

Heading into her semi-final in Dubai, Swiatek was heavy favourite to win her second consecutive WTA title after claiming the title in Doha the week before.

However Swiatek was unsuccessful in her bid to reach the final as she lost to Anna Kalinskaya 6-4 6-4.

It was a bitterly disappointing defeat for Swiatek who missed a golden opportunity to establish even more dominance ahead of Indian Wells.

As all champions do Swiatek offered perspective to her defeat as she looks ahead to the rest of the season, “I mean, I’m angry but on the other hand, there aren’t many players that actually survive these kinds of tournaments so I just kind of have to let it go and accept it,” Swiatek was quoted by Tennis Majors.

There was not only perspective offered but also fatigue as expectations and pressure can force simple mistakes from the best players in the world.

The world number one acknowledged Kalinskaya’s performance but did admit her own performance contributed to the defeat, “Today I would say, I mean she [Kalinskaya] played well and for sure she deserves to be in the final, but I feel like it was more about me and my level,” Swiatek told Tennis Majors.

“I wanted to be focused on myself and I wasn’t really able to implement any tactics that I had. Usually, when I tell myself what to do, I can improve my game but today I was so out of power and tired that I just couldn’t. Day by day, it was a little bit worse.”

Swiatek will hope to re-energize herself ahead of the sunshine double in America.

Last year Swiatek lost to eventual champion Elena Rybakina in the semi-finals at Indian Wells before withdrawing from Miami.

The Pole will look to improve last year’s performance when she plays Indian Wells, which starts on the 6th of March.

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‘Speechless’ Mensik Reaches Maiden ATP Final In Doha

Jakub Mensik is into his first ATP final in Doha.

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Jakub Mensik admitted he was left speechless after reaching his first ATP final in Doha.

The 18 year-old continued his remarkable week with a 6-4 1-6 6-3 semi-final victory over Gael Monfils.

The Czech Republican produced clinical tennis as he beat the 2018 champion to reach his maiden ATP final.

After the match Mensik admitted he was left ‘speechless’ and spoke about the influence Monfils had on his career, “It is amazing. Hopefully not the last one [final]. Incredible week so far,” Mensik told the ATP website.

“Today again with Gael, he played unbelievable. I know it is tough to play against him, especially with his good movement. For me every point I have to play my best game.

“I have to say this performance was one of the best in my entire life. I am so glad I reached this level in the semis, so hopefully tomorrow I play like this. An amazing feeling with my first ATP final. I am speechless.

“I told him when I was young I watched him a lot on the TV. One of the biggest showman on court. He is a great guy, so hopefully in the future we will meet once again. The rallies were so fun with him.”

Mensik has so far beaten three former champions this week as he also defeated Andy Murray and Andrey Rublev this week.

Now Mensik will aim to win his first ATP title as he takes on Karen Khachanov in Saturday’s final.

Should Mensik win the title he could climb to 75 in the world as he started the week at 116 in the world.

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