Refreshed Grigor Dimitrov Aims High In 2016 - UBITENNIS
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Refreshed Grigor Dimitrov Aims High In 2016

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Grigor Dimitrov competes against Benoit Paire during the men’s singles first round match on day two of the 2015 Rakuten Open. (Oct. 5, 2015 – Source: Atsushi Tomura/Zimbio.com)

Bulgarian tennis sensation Grigor Dimitrov has spoken about his high amount confidence for 2016 after experiencing a troublesome year on the tour.

 

This year the former world No.8 failed to reach a final on the ATP Tour with his best performance being a duo of semifinal appearances in Brisbane and Istanbul. At the Grand Slam events Dimitrov failed to progress to the last eight at all four tournaments, a sharp contrast to 2014 where he reached the quarterfinal at the Australian Open and the semifinal at Wimbledon. The 24-year-old has also experienced issues off the court after ending his relationship with Maria Sharapova.

Dimitrov’s below-par year has also been discussed extensively in the media. Recently he was named ‘disappointment of the year’ by Sports Illustrated. According to the magazine “expectation is continuing to trounce achievement” in regards to the 24-year-old.

After enduring a difficult year on the tour, the Bulgarian has spoken about the positive things he has learned from the experience during an interview with Fox Sports Australia.

I’ve experienced both worlds now — it’s been a great contrast being No.8 and then I’m 28.” Dimitrov said.

Next year Dimitrov have confirmed that he will continue working with Juan Martin Del Potro’s former coach Franco Davin as well as Swedish coach Johan Ortegren. The work with the two coaches are starting to pay off for the world No.28 who has rediscovered his passion for the sport. During the off-season Dimitrov attended two training camps to help him prepare for his first tournament of 2016, the Brisbane International. At the 2013 edition of the tournament Dimitrov reached his first ever ATP Final before losing to Andy Murray. Speaking about his off-season preparations, Dimitrov has said that has the ‘spark’ back in his game.

“That was to try to get maximum preparation for the Australian swing,’’ he said.
“It’s good to finally feel alive again a little bit, I feel like I’ve got the spark again and I’m feeling motivated”.

The Brisbane International will get underway next Monday. At 28th in the world, Dimitrov will be unseeded at the event.

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Updated Entry Lists For Vienna And Nur-Sultan

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The indoor season continues on the ATP World Tour with the Erste Bank Open in Austria and the new Astana Open in Kazakhstan.

 

The Erste Bank Open in Vienna is an ATP 500 and one of the biggest events of the hard-court indoor season. Having a prize money of $ 1.409.510, it regularly shows a very high-level entry list. This year, seven of the top-10 players are committed to play, as Dominic Thiem, Stefanos Tsitsipas, Daniil Medvedev and Andrey Rublev are just some of the stars in the entry list. Word’s number one Novak Djokovic has received a Wild-Card and will compete as well. John Isner and Fabio Fognini have withdrawn from the main draw.

With the Swiss Indoors Basel cancelled for this year, the Astana Open, an ATP 250 tournament, will be the second event of the week. France’s Benoit Paire, Serbia’s Miomir Kecmanovic and USA’s Tennys Sandgren will be some of the main draw’s seeds. Richard Gasquet, Laslo Djere and Juan Ignacio Londero have pulled out and they have been replaced by Federico Delbonis, Radu Albot and Egor Gerasimov.

ATP 500 Vienna (AUT, Hard indoor), entry list:
Thiem, Dominic (AUT)
Tsitsipas, Stefanos (GRE)
Medvedev, Daniil (RUS)
Rublev, Andrey (RUS)
Schwartzman, Diego (ARG)
Berrettini, Matteo (ITA)
Monfils, Gael (FRA)
Shapovalov, Denis (CAN)
Goffin, David (BEL)
Carreno Busta, Pablo (ESP)
OUT Fognini, Fabio (ITA)
Khachanov, Karen (RUS)
Wawrinka, Stan (SUI)
Raonic, Milos (CAN)
Dimitrov, Grigor (BUL)
Garin, Cristian (CHI)
Auger-Aliassime, Felix (CAN)
OUT Isner, John (USA)
Coric, Borna (CRO)
Lajovic, Dusan (SRB)
Ruud, Casper (NOR)
Nishikori, Kei (PR, JPN)
Anderson, Kevin (PR, RSA)
WC Djokovic, Novak (SRB)
(WC)
(WC)
(WC)
(SE)
Alternates:
IN De Minaur, Alex (AUS)
IN Krajinovic, Filip (SRB)

Alt.1 Fritz, Taylor (USA)
Alt.2 Hurkacz, Hubert (POL)
Alt.3 Struff, Jan-Lennard (GER)


ATP 500 Vienna, Qualifying:
OUT Fritz, Taylor (USA)
Hurkacz, Hubert (POL)
Struff, Jan-Lennard (GER)
OUT Opelka, Reilly (USA)
OUT Pella, Guido (ARG)

Basilashvili, Nikoloz (GEO)
Evans, Daniel (GBR)
Pella, Guido (ARG)
Humbert, Ugo (FRA)
OUT Cilic, Marin (CRO)
OUT Ramos-Vinolas, Albert (ESP)

Sonego, Lorenzo (ITA)
Edmund, Kyle (GBR)
Querrey, Sam (USA)
(WC)
(WC)
(WC)
Alternates:
IN Nishioka, Yoshihito (JPN)
IN Bedene, Aljaz (SLO)

OUT Lopez, Feliciano (ESP)
IN Davidovich Fokina, Alejandro (ESP)
IN Sinner, Jannik (ITA)
IN Pospisil, Vasek (CAN)

Alt.1 Herbert, Pierre-Hugues (FRA)
Alt.2 Monteiro, Thiago (BRA)
Alt.3 Caruso, Salvatore (ITA)
Alt.4 Balasz, Attila (HUN)
Alt.5 Novak, Dennis (AUT)

ATP 250 Nur-Sultan (KAZ), entry list:
Paire, Benoit (FRA)
Kecmanovic, Miomir (SRB)
Mannarino, Adrian (FRA)
Millman, John (AUS)
Sandgren, Tennys (USA)
Bublik, Alexander (KAZ)
OUT Gasquet, Richard (FRA)
Andujar, Pablo (ESP)
Simon, Gilles (FRA)
Paul, Tommy (USA)
Thompson, Jordan (AUS)
Verdasco, Fernando (ESP)
Tiafoe, Frances (USA)
Vesely, Jiri (CZE)
OUT Londero, Juan Ignacio (ARG)
Norrie, Cameron (GBR)
Travaglia, Stefano (ITA)
Moutet, Corentin (FRA)
OUT Djere, Laslo (SRB)
WC Seppi, Andreas (ITA)
(WC)
(WC)
(SE)
(SE)
Alternates:
IN Albot, Radu (MDA)
IN Delbonis, Federico (ARG)
IN Gerasimov, Egor (BLR)

IN McDonald, Mackenzie (USA)
Alt.1 Kukushkin, Mikhail (KAZ)
Alt.2 Harris, Lloyd (RSA)
Alt.3 Duckworth, James (AUS)


ATP 250 Nur-Sultan, Qualifying:
Harris, Lloyd (RSA)
Hanfmann, Yannick (GER)
Duckworth, James (AUS)
Ruusuvuori, Emil (FIN)
Sugita, Yuichi (JPN)
Popyrin, Alexei (AUS)
Karatsev, Aslan (RUS)
Dzumhur, Damir (BIH)
Donskoy, Evgeny (RUS)
Polmans, Marc (AUS)
Jung, Jason (TPE)
Ivashka, Ilya (BLR)
Safwat, Mohamed (EGY)
Gulbis, Ernests (LAT)
Alternates:
Alt.1 Ito, Tatsuma (JPN)
Alt.2 Ofner, Sebastian (AUT)
Alt.3 Istomin, Denis (UZB)
Alt.4 Diez, Steven (CAN)
Alt.5 Ymer, Elias (SWE)

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‘I Love Tennis Because Of Him’ – Argentine Football Sensation Praises Roger Federer

The forward for Juventus F.C. Speaks out about the 20-time Grand Slam champion as well as other topics concerning the world of tennis.

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Roger Federer is used to various public figures praising him for his record-breaking career with his latest compliment coming from a star of Argentinian football.

 

Paulo Dybala, who has played for Serie A club Juventus since 2015, says he always tries to watch tennis because of him. The 26-year-old spoke out about the Swiss Maestro during a video Q and A session with the Tennis Channel for whom he is currently an ‘athlete analyst’ for. When asked ‘who was the player that made you fall in love with the game?’ he replied with Federer.

“Well at home, we used to watch a lot of sports, the TV was always on, and the sport we watched the most was football, followed by tennis,” Dybala said. “I always had a lot of admiration and respect. I liked Roger Federer’s style… I believe that I and many people have him as a tennis reference. We try to watch his matches, he has a style and elegance that makes everyone want to be like him. I always tried to watch him play so I love tennis because of him.”

Although Federer isn’t the only tennis player to have drawn praise from Dybala, who was part of his country’s national football team for the 2018 World Cup. He also speaks about his ‘great relationship’ with Diego Schwartzman. Schwartzman recently broke into the world’s top 10 for the first time in his career after reaching the semi-finals of the French Open.

“I have a great relationship with Diego, I have known him for years,” he said. “We always talk and I am very happy with what he is achieving.’
“I text him after some of his matches to congratulate him for what he has done.”

It was at the French Open this year where Rafael Nadal won the tournament for a historic 13th time in his career after defeating Novak Djokovic in straight sets. Dybala says that there are ‘no words’ to describe the latest achievement by the world No.2.

“Rafael Nadal won Roland Garros in a match in which he gave no chance to Novak Djokovic,” Dybala reflected. “I think it was more than well-deserved to win his 13th Roland Garros in his career. Something amazing. He matched Roger Federer with 20 Grand Slams. There are no words for this player, no words.”

Dybala is currently dating Oriana Sabatini who is the niece of 1990 US Open champion Gabriela Sabatini.

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Dan Evans On The Look Out For New Coach

The 30-year-old has come to a surprise decision to end his current coaching agreement despite achieving a career ranking high earlier this year.

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British No.1 Dan Evans is making a big change to his team after confirming that he will part ways with coach Mark Hilton at the end of the season.

 

The world No.35 reunited with Hilton just last year after also previously working with him prior to his drugs ban in 2017. Under his guidance Evans has achieved several wins over top 10 players, reached his first ever semi-final of an ATP 500 event in Dubai and peaked at a ranking best of 28th in March.

“I want to take this opportunity to thank Mark for his work and efforts over the past 12 months and we are both excited for what is next for each of our respective careers,” Evans said.

Evans’ announcement came on the same day he ended his five-match losing streak on the Tour. In the first round of the European Open on Tuesday he defeated Italy’s Salvatore Caruso in three sets. Making it his first win since the US Open when he defeated Brazil’s Thiago Seyboth Wild.

Hilton will now return to working for the British LTA. A former player himself he reached the semi-finals of the 2009 Wimbledon boys doubles championships and peaked at a ranking high of 202 on the ATP Tour in singles. His best performance at a Grand Slam occurred at Wimbledon when as a wild card he stunned Spain’s Albert Costa in the first round of the 2004 tournament. Besides Evans, he has also previously worked with the likes of Liam Broady and Kyle Edmund.

“After discussing our plans for 2021, Dan and I have made the mutual decision to part ways at the end of November,” Hilton said in a statement.
“Both of us are very proud of our collaboration this year, helping Dan achieve a career-high ranking of number 28, seven wins over top-20 players and reaching his first ATP 500 semi-final.
“I’m looking forward to taking the experience I have gained over the last three years at the highest levels of the ATP Tour and re-investing that back into the LTA’s Performance Team for the benefit of our British players and coaches.”

It is unclear as to who may step in as Evans’ next coach. The Brit will return to action on Wednesday when he plays Frances Tiafoe in the second round.

Evans’ win-loss for 2020 currently stands at 14-11 on the ATP Tour.

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