US Open Day 7 Preview: Five Must-See Matches - UBITENNIS
Connect with us

Focus

US Open Day 7 Preview: Five Must-See Matches

Published

on

Venus Williams (zimbio.com)

As we begin the fourth round in the singles draws on Sunday, Arthur Ashe Stadium is the place to be for the most high-profile encounters. Here’s a look at the five matches scheduled for the biggest tennis stadium in the world on Day 7.

Pablo Carreno Busta vs. Denis Shapovalov

Embed from Getty Images
Can the dream run for the 18-year-old Canadian continue? Shapovalov has already won six matches in Flushing Meadows, having come through three rounds of qualifying last week. He’s the first men’s qualifier to advance to the fourth round at the US Open in almost a decade, and the youngest player to do so since Michael Chang in 1989. Just a months ago, he was ranked 143rd in the world. With a win on Sunday, he’ll skyrocket into the top 50. Carreno Busta has also ascended to new heights in 2017. He reached his first Masters 1,000 semifinal in Indian Wells, showing he’s capable of great play on American hard courts. He followed that up by winning a clay title in Estoril, and advancing to his first major quarterfinal at Roland Garros with a thrilling victory over Milos Raonic in five sets. His season took a turn from there, as he missed the entire grass court season due to an abdominal injury he suffered on that French Open run. Pablo went just 3-4 this summer heading into the Open, but re-found some form in New York with the help of a kind draw. He has yet to drop a set, though he’ll now face some tougher competition, and on a much bigger stage. I’m interested to see what the crowd is like for this first match of the day: the crowd is usually sparse at 11:00am, and Shapovalov has shown he likes to feed off a crowd’s energy. Hopefully the Next Gen sensation draws people to their seats at the early hour, as this has the potential to be a good one.

Maria Sharapova vs. Anastasija Sevastova

Embed from Getty Images
Much like Shapovalov (and not just in name), Sharapova has surprised and delighted many through three rounds at this year’s US Open. After a terrific opening night victory over second seed Simona Halep, she hasn’t looked as sharp against lesser competition in her last two matches. While Sharapova has survived despite dips in her level of play, she won’t be able to afford as many dips against Sevastova. For those not familiar with the sixteenth seed, the Latvian actually retired back in 2013 due to recurring injuries. She returned to the tour two years later, and had her best-ever major showing last year in New York, going all the way to the quarterfinals. She’s continued to play well in 2017, with one title and 34 wins on the year. Sharapova has only played 12 matches in almost two years, and has dealt with injuries since she returned to tennis in April. It’s hard to imagine her advancing too much farther in this tournament. She’s not the most athletic player on tour, and she usually requires a lot of match play to get into good form. While I would not be surprised to see Sevastova reach her second straight US Open quarterfinal, you cannot dismiss the chances of such a fierce competitor as Sharapova.

Venus Williams vs. Carla Suarez Navarro

Embed from Getty Images
Who would have expected Venus Williams to be the most consistent WTA performer at Grand Slam events in 2017? She already has 18 wins at majors this year, highlighted by reaching the finals at both the Australian Open and Wimbledon. After struggling a bit in Toronto and Cincinnati, the 37-year-old champion has looked better with each passing round in New York. This may be her first true test though, and may be a good indicator of how serious a contender Venus is for this major title. She is 4-3 lifetime against Suarez Navarro, and they have split their four hard court meetings. The Spaniard has seen her ranking drop this year due to a barely-above .500 winning percentage. After reaching a career-high ranking of number six last year, she is actually not even seeded at the Open. Still she is a former US Open quarterfinalist with a beautiful backhand, and will not be an easy out. Venus is favored here, and should look to use the support of her home crowd to lift her game.

Garbine Muguruza vs. Petra Kvitova

Embed from Getty Images
The night session will kick off with this battle of Wimbledon champions. Both have played very impressively this week. Muguruza has only dropped nine games in three matches. Kvitova has had a tougher draw, but has played some of the best tennis of her season. Petra has only once made the US Open quarterfinals, while this is actually the first time Garbine’s advanced past the second round in Flushing Meadows. Muguruza appears to be a different player right now: she’s playing with a ton of confidence after winning Wimbledon as well as Cincinnati. Considering Kvitova is not yet fully recovered from the awful hand injury she suffered during a home invasion, Muguruza should prevail. If both continue their strong play from earlier this week, this will be a prime time slugfest in New York.

Sam Querrey vs. Mischa Zverev

Embed from Getty Images
Querrey will be looking to avenge the loss of his countryman and friend John Isner, who was soundly defeated by Zverev on Friday night. Sam has never advanced past this round at his home major, and will look to draw inspiration from his semifinal appearance at Wimbledon in July. Zverev is having the best season of his career, thanks to pushing himself harder while seeing his younger brother Alexander excel. The two have never faced each other before, so there’s no history to go off here. This match may hinge on how well Querrey reacts to the expectations placed upon him as the only remaining American man in such a truly open draw. He’ll undoubtedly have the full backing of the late night New York crowd.

Order of play

Arthur Ashe stadium (11am local time)
Denis Shapovalov (CAN) v Pablo Carreno Busta ESP (12)
Anastasija Sevastova LAT (16) v Maria Sharapova (RUS)
Carla Suarez Navarro (ESP) v Venus Williams USA (9)

(not before 19:00)
Petra Kvitova CZE (13) v Garbine Muguruza ESP (3)
Sam Querrey USA (17) v Mischa Zverev GER (23)

Louis Armstrong Stadium
After two doubles matches
Julia Goerges GER (30) v Sloane Stephens USA
Paolo Lorenzi ITA v Kevin Anderson RSA (28

Grandstand
After one doubles match
Lucas Pouille FRA (16) v Diego Schwartzman ARG (29)

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Focus

Stefanos Tsitsipas downs Sinner; now aims for Third Title in Monte Carlo

Stylish Greek completes comeback win and re-enters the top ten.

Published

on

(@WeAreTennis - Twitter)

After winning two in a row in 2021-2022, Stefanos Tsitsipas is now in reach of a third title at the prestigious Monte Carlo Rolex Masters, after beating World number two Jannik Sinner in three gruelling sets.

The 25-year-old had to battle hard and come from a break down in the third to win 6-4, 3-6, 6-4 and now plays Casper Ruud in tomorrow’s final. The Greek has had an indifferent start to the year with a 11-6 win-loss record, but today was his first top three victory since the 2022 Cincinatti Masters – where he beat Daniil Medvedev – and ensures a return back into the top ten of the men’s rankings.

Tsitsipas recognised how hard he had to fight and revealed after the match just how satisfied he was of his performance:

“It was tennis at its highest level that I have been able to play. Jannik was an extremely difficult opponent and it can be seen throughout the year so far. He has been very consistent and I could see that throughout today with his game. He is one of the toughest opponents I have faced so far and to find ways when there weren’t that many, I am proud of that. He gave me a very difficult game and the way I overcame it is true excellence.”

Sinner double faulted at 30-40 to gift the break early with the score at one game all. From there, Tsistipas rallied with poise and confidence in a brilliant opening set lasting 44 minutes including a stunning backhand down-the-line winner to open the game when serving at 4-3. He took the first set 6-4 after a tiring 18-shot rally – where both players hit all angles of the court – before Sinner hit a forehand wide.

However, 22-year-old Sinner struck back immediately on his first breakpoint at the start of the second set when he won a close exchange at the net and then took a 3-0 lead.  He later survived a breakback point when 4-2 up and crucially held on for 5-2. He faced more pressure when serving for the set at 5-3 and was taken to deuce but levelled the match at one-set-all on his second set point to give the crowd exactly what they were asking f

Sinner was now in full flow hitting powerfully from the baseline and once again broke early at the start of the final set to take a 3-1 lead. But with the match now entering the third hour he began to tire physically and called for the trainer during the changeover with the score at 4-3.  When the match resumed, he lost the next three games and the Greek had completed a remarkable turnaround, handing his opponent just his second defeat of the season in two hours and forty minutes.

“It helps a lot knowing I have a win like this under my belt. Having a win like this and getting to the levels of tennis again brings a lot of satisfaction to me,” Tsitsipas said. “When there is a lot of work put in each day, these are the type of matches you are aiming for.”

Sinner’s only loss prior to today was against Carlos Alcaraz in Indian Wells semi-finals. He has been the stand out player this year after already winning titles in Rotterdam, the Miami Open, and his maiden Grand Slam in Australia. Despite having won 25 matches overall though, he now trails Tsitsipas 3-6 in their head-to-head rivalry.

Continue Reading

Focus

Casper Ruud Reveals Shock After Knocking Out Novak Djokovic In Monte-Carlo

Casper Ruud is into his second career Masters 1000 final after beating Novak Djokovic for the first time.

Published

on

(@rolandgarros - Twitter)

Casper Ruud is into his second Masters 1000 final of his career after recording his best ever win by beating Novak Djokovic 6-4 1-6 6-4.

The Norwegian defeated the world number one for the first time in his career as he overcame a mini-comeback from Djokovic to seal his place in the Monte-Carlo final.

Having lost his five previous meetings to Djokovic, Ruud played some fearless tennis under pressure as the eighth seed broke to close out a career-best win.

Speaking after the win Ruud admitted he was in a state of shock and was pleased with the victory, “I am super happy,” Ruud told the ATP website.

“This is a day I will remember for a long time. Beating a World No. 1 is something I have never done and beating Novak is something I have never done. I am very, very happy. I am a little bit in a state of shock right now.”

After achieving the seemingly improbable, Ruud will now look to win his first ever ATP title that’s above a Masters 1000 event when he takes on Stefanos Tsitsipas in the Monte-Carlo final.

That’s a prospect Ruud is looking forward to as he prepares for one final challenge, “There is always one more match in tennis,” the Norwegian explained.

“Tomorrow is going to be a special day, playing a final here in Monte-Carlo. It is a great result but I have been chasing a big title for a few years now and tomorrow I will have another shot at it. I am going to give it my all. Stef is playing well. He is a great player on clay and on other surfaces as well, but I guess clay is maybe where he has had the most success and especially this tournament.

“So it is going to be another tough task, but I am up for it.”

The final will take place at 14:00 BST.

Continue Reading

Focus

Rafael Nadal Set For Opening Round Test Against Cobolli In Barcelona

Rafael Nadal will look to make his ATP tour return in Barcelona this week.

Published

on

(@nadalprop_ - Twitter)

Rafael Nadal is set for his return to tennis in Barcelona as he has been drawn against Flavio Cobolli in the opening round.

Nadal has been struggling with injury after being injured again in Brisbane this year.

The tournament in Brisbane was his first tournament back for a year as he suffered a hip injury at the Australian Open last year.

Now Nadal aims to return to competitive action in Barcelona as he has been drawn against Flavio Cobolli in the opening round.

Speaking earlier in the week Nadal was hopeful of a return to the tour in Barcelona, “Excited to be here for a few days before the start of the tournament,” Nadal told the ATP website.

“I’m here to see how it goes… can’t wait to try and play. I’ll let you know. Important to say that I don’t want to confirm I’ll be playing, but I hope so. We’ll see.”

Should Nadal play and win his opening round match then the Spaniard will play fourth seed Alex De Minaur in the second round.

The former world number one has won the title on 12 different occasions but hasn’t won the title since 2021.

Elsewhere in the draw defending champion Carlos Alcaraz will begin against Luca Van Assche or Zhizhen Zhang with the Spaniard projected to meet Borna Coric in the third round.

Alcaraz suffered an injury in Monte-Carlo and will be beginning his clay court campaign in Barcelona.

Also in action in Barcelona are Andrey Rublev, Stefanos Tsitsipas and Casper Ruud.

Main draw action will begin on Monday.

Continue Reading

Trending