Queen's: The Curse Of The Seeds Claims Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, But He Remains Undeterred - UBITENNIS
Connect with us


Queen’s: The Curse Of The Seeds Claims Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, But He Remains Undeterred




Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (zimbio.com)

LONDON: Jo-Wilfried Tsonga has become the latest casualty at The Queen’s Club after crashing out to Gilles Muller in the second round of the Aegon Championships.


Facing a player renowned for his blistering serve, Tsonga knew of the danger he faced. On the other hand, the Frenchman previously triumphed over his rival by winning three out of their four meetings since 2014, including one this year.

Muller proved Statistics to be irrelevant in the match as he outclassed Tsonga 6-4, 6-4, on the grass. He was more aggressive, more confident and crucially had the better consistency of the two. This was illustrated in the opening set when he dropped just four points behind his serve.

“He just played good tennis. You know, sometimes you cannot do anything, because the guy in front of you is playing well and he’s doing the right things to make you play in a bad way. And that’s it.” An upbeat Tsonga reflected during his press conference.

Tsonga, who is seeking redemption following his first round loss at the French Open, continued to battle during what was an intriguing encounter. Still, it was not enough to disrupt Muller’s momentum as he secured the early break at the start of set two with a backhand volley at the net. A couple games later, the fifth seed had two chances to break back and level, but was denied by a Muller ace following by a cross-court winner at the net. It was if the Luxemburg player was toying around with the world No.10. Strolling towards the finish line, the upset was completed with the help of a Muller slice serve down the line.

“I played him a few times. He won; I won. It’s always close. Before the match, when you go on, you just think about to win no matter what happen. But today he was just too good and me not enough good, you know, to play at this level.

The loss comes a day after the top three seeds (Andy Murray, Stan Wawrinka and Milos Raonic) crashed out of the tournament. With so many of his key rivals out of the draw, some speculated that extra pressure contributed towards Tsonga’s second round performance. A theory swiftly dismissed by 32-year-old, who instead pointed out Muller’s recent triumph in s-Hertogenbosch.

“No, not at all, because I knew before that it’s going to be difficult. Gilles is playing well. He just won a tournament.” He explained.

Down, but not out

Refusing to be too critical of his performance at The Queen’s Club, Tsonga’s focus will now switch to Wimbledon. A two-time semifinalist at SW19, the Frenchman plans to put ‘a little more energy’ in his game.

Since Indian Wells, the world No.10 has only managed to win back-to-back matches in one out of six tournaments. A sharp contrast to February, who he won two tournaments within two weeks. The recent results might be disheartening for some, but Tsonga is relying on his experience to guide him through the patchy period.

“I’m used to be in that kind of position. I won only 15 tournaments in my career and I played maybe 200. Maybe more, I don’t know. So most of the time I’m going home with a loss.” Tsonga concluded.



Grigor Dimitrov Blames Poor Monte Carlo Performance On ‘Big Infection’

The 29-year-old reveals the reason behind his error-stricken performance at the Monte Carlo Country Club on Thursday.




Bulgaria’s Grigor Dimitrov said he simply ‘didn’t play’ in his latest match at the Monte Carlo Masters after winning just two games against Rafael Nadal.


The world No.17 fell 6-1, 6-1, to the 20-time Grand Slam champion in less than an hour on Thursday. He won 48% of his first service points and 32% of his second, as he hit 32 unforced errors. A dismal performance from Dimitrov who had beaten Jan-Lennard Struff and Jeremy Chardy earlier in the tournament.

Whilst it was never going to be easy playing somebody of Nadal’s calibre, Dimitrov has revealed that he had been troubled by an issue away from the court. He has been suffering from a ‘big infection’ in his tooth which has had an impact on his preparation for the match.

“I’ve been struggling with a massive tooth problem for the past four or five days,” he said. “I have a big infection in my tooth. It’s been hard. I haven’t been able to sleep well or eat well or anything like that.’
“I was bearing it for a while this whole week.”

It is another case of bad luck for Dimitrov on the Tour this season. At the Australian Open he reached the quarter-finals in what was his best Grand Slam performance since the 2019 US Open. However, in his last eight showdown with Russia’s Aslan Karatsev he was hindered by a back injury.

“It’s straight to the doctor’s, unfortunately,” he commented on his tooth. “Very, very unpleasant moment. It is what it is.’
“At least I’m glad it happened on a home soil so I can go see my dentist and figure this problem as soon as possible.Hopefully it’s not too serious and I’ll be able to come back as soon as possible.”

Speaking in his press conference, Nadal said he ‘felt sorry’ for his opponent who ‘played a bad match.’ During the match the world No.3 wasn’t aware of Dimitrov’s problem but was told about it afterwards.

“I wish him all the best. He’s a great guy, a good friend. I just hope the situation is to improve as soon as possible,” he said.

Nadal, who is seeking a record 12th title in Monte Carlo, will play Russia’s Andrey Rublev next.

Continue Reading


Dan Evans Fires Back At ‘No Manners’ Musetti

30-year-old Evans says he is not happy with recent comments the Italian has said about him.




British No.1 Dan Evans has branded fellow player Lorenzo Musetti ‘disrespectful’ after recording the most high-profile win of his career at the Monte Carlo Masters on Thursday.


The world No.33 stunned Novak Djokovic 6-4, 7-5, in what is his first ever win over a member of the prestigious Big Three. A trio that consists of Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer. What is even more remarkable is that Evan’s victory took place on the clay. A surface which he hadn’t won a Tour match on since 2017 prior to this week.

Speaking to reporters following his win over the world No.1, Evans was questioned about what was the difference between his match against Musetti last week and his performance in Monte Carlo. Prompting the Brit to hit out at the Italian who is dubbed as one of the rising stars of the Tour.

“How he spoke last week was embarrassing,” Evans said. “Let’s not talk about Musetti in my press conference.
“Last week he said some things in the Italian press about me that was disrespectful.
Musetti, if he apologises, I will answer. He’s a good tennis player, but he’s got no manners.”

The fallout between the two started last week after Musetti won their match at the Sardegna Open. Saving four match points in the final tiebreaker en route to the victory. Afterwards, the 19-year-old accused his rival of disrespecting him on the court.

“There are respectful experienced players on the court,” he said. “Others like Evans, they try to use my youth to (win) matches.
“But it’s all experience for me. Evans disrespected me. I don’t want to be treated like a young man.”

Whilst the two tennis players are unlikely to be friends anytime soon, Evans did praise the recent performance of his rival. Musetti is the youngest player in the top 100 on the men’s Tour and is one of only two players aged 19. The other is compatriot Jannik Sinner.

“He played very well last week. I wasn’t good enough. I didn’t take the match points. It’s just tennis. Yeah, he could do with learning some manners.” He concluded.

Evans is through to the quarter-finals of a Masters 1000 tournament for the first time in his career. Awaiting him in the next round is 11th seed David Goffin who defeated Alexander Zverev in his third round match.

Continue Reading


New Setback Forces Dominic Thiem Out Of Belgrade

The Austrian tennis star has written a blog post on his website titled ‘my knee hurts!”




Dominic’s Thiem’s return to the Tour has been postponed for a second time due to a physical problem which he recently visited a doctor about.


The US Open champion has confirmed that he is currently suffering from pain in his knee and has decided to pull out of next week’s Belgrade Open. An ATP 250 event which will be headlined by world No.1 Novak Djokovic. It is unclear as to what kind of injury Thiem is suffering from or when the pain started. Earlier this year he confirmed that he had been suffering from a long-standing foot issue which gives him intermittent pain. Although there is no indication that these are linked in anyway.

“2021 just doesn’t want to get going. Unfortunately I will have to cancel my start at next week’s tournament in Novak Djokovic’s hometown Belgrade,” Thiem wrote in a statement. “My knee hurts and I went to see a doctor. It is not a big issue but I need to take care of it. I am definitely not fit enough to play next week.”

Earlier this month Thiem delayed his expected return to the Tour at this week’s Monte Carlo Masters because he was ‘not 100% yet.’ In a blog post on his website the Austrian admitted that he had ‘a lot of work to do’ and ‘tough weeks’ ahead. Thiem hasn’t played a match since the Dubai Tennis Championships after deciding to take a break from the sport in order to reset himself.

The hope for the world No.4 is that he will be back on track and ready to play at the Madrid Open which will begin on April 30th with the ultimate goal remaining to be back to full fitness at the French Open. Thiem’s most successful Grand Slam where he has reached finals in 2018 and 2019.

“I want to be completely fit at the beginning of May and play proper tennis,” he states.
“There is something positive, though: Coach Nicolas Massu arrived in Austria yesterday, we are going to continue my program even though at the moment we have to be careful. In the meantime I have also been working on my physical fitness with sports scientist Mike Reinprecht.’
“There is no doubt, the big goal till the summer are the French Open – in Paris I must be at my best.”

So far this season Thiem has only won back-to-back matches in one out of four tournaments played. Doing so at the Australian Open where he reached the fourth round before losing to Grigor Dimitrov. Since then he has suffered second round losses in Doha and Dubai. His win-loss record for 2021 currently stands at 5-4.

Continue Reading