How Eugenie Bouchard Beat Bethanie Mattek-Sands in Hobart - UBITENNIS
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How Eugenie Bouchard Beat Bethanie Mattek-Sands in Hobart

How Eugenie Bouchard beat in straight sets Mattek-Sands in her debut match in Hobart. Details of the match.

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Math reports by Giovanni Vianello

 

 

Osaka b. Wolfe

A spectacular match opened the centre court program in Hobart today, even though it didn’t involve high ranked players. The match was between Jarmila Wolfe, an Australian Wild Card, and Naomi Osaka, born in 1997 from Japan and who came from the qualification draw. The match saw both players displaying nice strokes, with the Australian coming sometimes to the net and the Japanese hitting hard with her forehand. In the first set, Jarmila Wolfe conquered an early break and served for the set on 5-3, but was then broken. The set ended in a tie-break, which saw Wolfe wasting three set point from the score of 6-3 on, but she, in the end, won the set concluding the tie-break 8-6. In the second set Wolfe again went up of a break, but this time wasn’t able to serve for the set, Osaka counter-broke her before it could happen. The second set too finished in a tie-break, this time with the Asian prevailing 10-8 after saving two match points, with one of those on Wolfe’s serve. In the third set the quality of the match lowered a bit, especially with Wolfe starting to hit unforced errors in big quantity. Osaka went up of a break in two occasions, one on 2-1 and one on 3-2, with this last one being the deciding one. Wolfe fought until the end, saving three match points, two with her serve on 5-3 and one on Osaka’s serve, but eventually the younger Japanese prevailed 6-4.

Cibulkova b. Konta

In the second match on centre court, Dominika Cibulkova and Johanna Konta competed one against the other. Competition, though, is quite a big word, the two players looked like they challenged each other on who played worst. The match was filled up with unforced errors and double faults. In the first set, the Slovakian gained a 5-1 lead, but then lost 4 games in a row. The set finished in a tie-break, which saw Konta having 5 consecutive set-points on the 6-1 score, but incredibly Cibulkova eventually won the breaker 8-6 and so the set. In the second set Konta was twice leading with a break of advantage, but was both of the times caught by Cibulkova, who in the end broke definitively her opponent on 5-5 (with Konta having led 40-0). Cibulkova, after failing a first match point with a double fault, won the match at the second chance.

Bouchard b. Mattek-Sands

The most waited match of the day, Eugenie Bouchard against Bethanie Mattek-Sands, resulted in a delusion. The encounter saw the Canadian dominating from the beginning to the end, being always in advantage in terms of score. Bouchard looked today in bright form, certainly not the player who lost at last year’s Wimbledon first round. Mattek-Sands tried to do something by coming often to the net, especially with the serve and volley, but most of the times was passed by the brilliant Bouchard of today, who also dominated baseline rallies. Bouchard only had a little black-out while leading 3-0 in the first, when she lost her serve and let the American regain up to 2-3 down, but then won 9 out of the ten following games

Watson b. Pereira

The evening session match was between Heather Watson, from U.K. and Teliana Pereira, from Brasil. The match, after a battled start, saw the British easily winning over the Brasilian, whose game looks more effective on clay, given that she often uses high and top-spun balls. In the first set, Pereira broke Watson on the score of 1-1, but Watson immediately caught her opponent back. On 2-2, Watson struggled again on her serve, but this was the last time. On 3-2 in advantage of the British, Watson broke again the Brasilian, and this was the deciding game, since the player from that game on held their own serve and the first set ended 6-3. Heather Watson grew up in form in the second set, and Pereira didn’t seem to have a clue of what she was doing, so the set, about which there isn’t anything more to tell, finished 6-0.

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Croatia beats Italy to book semifinal spot in the Davis Cup

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Croatia upset Italy 2-1 in the quarter finals of the Davis Cup by Rakuten Finals at the Pala Alpitour in Turin to reach the semifinal, as Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic beat Fabio Fognini and Jannik Sinner 6-3 6-4 in the decisive double match. 

 

Borna Gojo gave Croatia an early 1-0 lead over Italy in the quarter finals of the Davis Cup quarter finals at the Pala Alpitour in Turin after his 7-6 (7-2) 2-6 6-2 win against Lorenzo Sonego after 2 hours and 19 minutes. 

Sonego went up a 4-1 lead with a break in the fourth game, but he did not convert a double break point in the sixth game. Gojo broke back at 30 in the seventh game. The Croatian player won five consecutive points from 2-2 to win the tie-break 7-2. 

Sonego went up a 4-0 lead with a double break in the second set. The world number 27 player saved three break-back points. He held serve in the seventh game with two aces to seal the set 6-2. 

Gojo earned a break in the fourth game of the third set to take a 3-1 lead and held serve for 4-1. Sonego earned two break-back points in the seventh game, but Gojo saved them with a backhand volley and a first serve. The world number 279 held serve with an ace to open up a 5-2 lead and sealed the decisive set 6-2 with his second break.

“It feels amazing. We knew we had to get one point from the two singles.The support was unbelievable. They are so loud. Some of my best friends and family are here and I want to thank them with all my heart for comng”, said Gojo. 

Jannik Sinner came back from one set down to edge Marin Cilic 3-6 7-6 (7-4) 6-3 drawing level the tie to 1-1. 

Cilic rallied from 15-40 down to break serve on his second opportunity in the fourth game of the opening set. Both players held their next service games. Cilic served out the first set 6-3 in the ninth game after recovering from 0-30 down.

Sinner battled back from a set and a break down. Cilic served for the match when he was leading 5-4 in the second set. Sinner fought back from the brink, breaking to love before winning the tie-break 7-4. 

Sinner broke serve to love at the start of the third set. Cilic converted his third break-back point in the second game to draw level to 1-1. Both players went on serve until the seventh game, when Sinner earned his second break to take a 4-3 lead. The Italian star held his serve before earning two match points at 5-3. Cilic saved the first chance with a forehand inside-out. Sinner broke serve on his second match point.  

“The most important thing is that we are are still here. It is the most important amazing feeling. We will try to do the best in the doubles. I just tried to stay there. It was not easy trying to break him for the match, but I just tried my best”, said Sinner. 

Olympic champions Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic beat Fabio Fognini and Jannik Sinner 6-3 6-4 after 1 hour and 20 minutes to secure Croatia a spot in the semifinals. 

The Croatian team earned the first break in the fourth game at deuce to take a 3-1 lead. Sinner and Fognini saved five set points to hold serve at deuce in the eighth game. Mektic and Pavic did not face any break points to close out the first set 6-3 after 38 minutes. 

The Italian team saved a break point in the third game of the second set. Croatia earned the break in the seventh game to take a 4-3 after Fognini made a double fault and did not face a break point in their next service games to win the 42-minute second set 6-4 on their first match point, as Pavic fired an ace.  

Italy did not earn any break points, while Croatia converted two of their eight chances.

Croatia will face either Serbia or Kazakhstan in the semifinal in Madrid. 

“Honestly, it feels incredible. I don’s think anyone expected us to get this far and it feels amazing to be going in Madrid”, said Mektic. 

Croatia is bidding for a third Davis Cup title and the second in three editions after claiming this tournament in 2018. 

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The Russian Tennis Federation scores come-back win over Spain to secure quarter final spot in the Davis Cup

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Andrey Rublev and Aslan Karatsev fought back from one set down to beat Marcel Granollers and Feliciano Lopez 4-6 6-2 6-4 in front of a capacity crowd at the Madrid Arena securing a spot in the quarter final for the Russian Tennis Federation in Group A at the Davis Cup by Rakuten. 

 

The Russian Tennis Federation set up a quarter final clash against Sweden. Spain has been eliminated and will not defend the title won in 2019. 

Spain earned the only break when Lopez hit a forehand return into the tramlines. The Spanish 40-year-old veteran player served out the first set 6-4 when Rublev hit a return long. 

The Russian team earned two breaks to win the second set 6-2. Karatsev earned the decisive break in the 10th game with a backhand winner down the line in the 10th game at 00:40 in the night. 

“We are really happy to be in the quarter finals. We are going to do our best to go further. Two years ago we were in the semifinals so we will see if we can do this result, but every player from usi s giving 100% so that’s the most important thing”, said Rublev. 

In the opening singles match Lopez came back from one set down to beat Rublev 2-6 6-3 6-4. Lopez hit 14 aces and won 82% of his first serve points. 

Rublev earned an early break in the first game and broke again to open up a 4-1 lead after two double faults in the first set. 

Lopez hit a crosscourt volley at 15-15 and broke serve to take a 4-2 lead. The Spaniard held serve after four deuces in a long seventh game to race out to a 5-2 lead. Lopez hit a huge ace out wide to close out the second set 6-3. Lopez went up a 2-1 lead with a break in the third game of the decisive set and held his next three service games. He did not convert two match points on Rublev’s serve at 5-3 and was forced to save a break point on his own serve, but he was able to hold serve at deuce with an unreturnable serve out wide. 

“This is over any espectation to be honest. For me it was already amazing to be here represening my country at 40 years old.  I did not expect to be the one playing the singles and I had to take the role. Playing against Andrey at this stage of my career in my home town, it’s over any expectations”, said Lopez. 

Danil Medvedev beat Pablo Carreno Busta 6-2 7-6 (7-3) in just an hour and a half in the second singles match to draw level the tie to 1-1. Medvedev hit 14 winners and broke five times. 

Medvedev raced out to a 5-0 lead with three breaks. Carreno Busta pulled one of the breaks back in the sixth game and saved three break points to hold serve in the seventh game. Medvedev rallied from one break down with a break back in the fifth game. Medvedev broke for the second time to take a 5-3 lead. Carreno Busta converted his fourth break-back in the 10th game to draw level to 5-5. Medvedev cruised through to a 5-0 lead with three mini-breaks. Carreno Busta saved two match pointsa at 6-3, but Medvedev sealed the tie-break 7-3 on his third opportunity. 

“Everybody is super happy, because that’s how we all are in the team, all five players. If I am not mistaken, we needed to win just one game to be through. Yet we won a match, and that’s all you need to know about us. We want to win, no matter it’s an exhibition match, a match that doesn’t count maybe for the tie, or an important match. Our goal is to win. It’s very important for the confidence of the team to win against such team as Spain. Even if they didn’t have their best line-up, they are playing at home, and to beat them means a lot”, said Medvedev. 

Serbia sets up quarter final over Germany

Two-time Roland Garros doubles champions Kevin Krawietz and Tim Puetz beat the Austrian team formed by Phillp Oswald and 2018 Australian Open doubles champion Oliver Marach 6-3 6-4 with a break in each set in Group F to secure a spot in the quarter finals for Germany in the Davis Cup by Rakuten Finals. 

Krawietz and Puetz won 82% of his first serve points and did not face a break point to beat Oswald and Marach in 85 minutes sealing a 2-1 win for Germany over Austria. The German team had beaten Novak Djokovic and Nikola Cacic in a crucial match against Serbia on Saturday. 

Germany will take on Great Britain in the quarter finals on Tuesday in a repeat of the match of the 2019 Davis Cup last eight match in Madrid. 

“I am not sure about being on top of the world but we are pretty happy right now and deservedly so. We deserve to be happy right now and to enjoy tonight. Tomorow we will start preparing for Great Britain”, said Puetz. 

Earlier world number 139 Jurij Rodionov beat Dominik Koepfer 6-1 7-5 in 87 minutes to give an early lead. Rodionov, who was making his first appearance in the Davis Cup, hit six aces and saved four of the five break points he faced. 

Rodionov broke twice in the second and sixth games to win the first set 6-1. Rodionov went up a break to take a 2-1 lead. Koepfer, who beat Filip Krajinovic during Germany’s victory over Serbia on Saturday, broke back in the eighth game to draw level to 4-4, but he was not able to convert two set points before Rodionov broke serve in the 12th game to close out the second set 7-5.  

“Winning my first Davis Cup match is really a dream come true. It was one on the biggest goals in my career and it is always very special playing for my country and representing Austria in Davis Cup”, said Rodionov. 

Jan Lennard Struff hit eight aces to beat Dennis Nowak 7-5 6-4 in 74 minutes. Struff earned his first break in the opening game. Novak broke back in the 10th game to draw level to 5-5. Struff earned a second break to win the first set 7-5. Struff broke once in the third game and held his next service games to win the second set 6-4. 

“I am very happy. It is tough as expected against Austria. Dennis is a good friend of mine, but I am very happy with my performance today. I played aggressively and I tried to put a pressure on Dennis from the beginning”, said Struff.

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‘We Competed Like Animals’ – Defending Champions Spain Knocked Out Of Davis Cup Finals

The Spanish team reacts to missing out on a place in the last eight of the team event.

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MADRID, SPAIN - NOVEMBER 28: Davis Cup by Rakuten Finals 2021 at Madrid Arena on November 28, 2021 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Mateo Villalba / Quality Sport Images / Kosmos Tennis)

The captain of the Spanish Davis Cup team says he is proud of his players’ performances after their 2-1 loss to the Russian Tennis Federation (RTF) on Sunday.

 

Spain, who won the last edition of the Davis Cup Finals back in 2019, narrowly missed out on a place in the last eight after losing a decisive doubles match against Russia. The host nation got off to a strong start with 40-year-old Feliciano Lopez stunning Andrey Rublev 2-6, 6-3, 6-4. However, Russia battled back with world No.2 Daniil Medvedev levelling the tie with a 6-2, 7-6(3), win over Pablo Carreno-Busta. Then in the doubles Rublev and Aslan Karatsev battled back from a set down to prevail 4-6, 6-2, 6-4, over Lopez and Marcel Granollers.

Despite the defeat, captain Sergi Bruguera has hailed his team after experiencing what he describes as ‘issues.’ Their rising star Cartlos Alcaraz was forced to withdraw from the competition after testing positive for COVID-19. Meanwhile, Roberto Bautista Agut, who was part of the winning team two years ago, was also forced to pull out after suffering a training accident.

“The truth is I couldn’t be more proud of my team. We have been through a lot of issues. I think we competed like animals both days,” said Bruguera.
“We won 3-0 (against Ecuador) and we lost 2-1, 6-4 in the third in the doubles. Because of that, and we are out, we still like don’t understand.’
“But my team competed incredibly both days. Today (Sunday) was excellent. I mean, I couldn’t put one bad in anything, 10 points the attitude, the compromise, how they play, the level of game of all my players. I couldn’t be prouder.”

Lopez, who made his Davis Cup debut back in 2003, shared his captain’s disappointment with them narrowly losing out of a place in the last eight due to the format. The 18-team event has been split into six groups of three. The winner of each group will progress to the quarter-finals along with the two highest-scoring second place teams.

“Unfortunately playing in this format, sometimes you do what you have to do, and you don’t get the price,” said Lopez. “This is what happened, winning 3-Love and losing 2-1 the way we lost is really rare not to qualify. This is why we are so disappointed now, especially myself giving one point to my team and then going one set up in the doubles. We were very close, but it was not enough.”
“I don’t want this to sound as an excuse, of course, because there’s no excuses when you lose in any sport, but it’s really disappointing to be out of the Davis Cup the way we are.”

As for the Russian Tennis Federation, they will take on Sweden who are the lowest-ranked team remaining in the competition. The country is seeking only their third Davis Cup title and first since 2006.

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