Andy Murray, Victoria Azarenka Take Cincinnati Wild Cards - UBITENNIS
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Andy Murray, Victoria Azarenka Take Cincinnati Wild Cards

Both have won the hard court event in their careers.

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Three-time major champion Andy Murray and two-time winner Victoria Azarenka, both of whom have played limited schedules of late, will play the final major US Open tuneup in Cincinnati after receiving wild cards.

 

They are the first wild cards distributed by the promotionally-known Western and Southern Open, an ATP Masters event and WTA Premier 5 tournament.

“The resumes for Vika and Andy really speak for themselves,” tournament director Andre Silva said in a news release. “I think many tennis fans are eager to see each of them back on the court, and we are pleased to offer them both wild cards to play the Western & Southern Open.”

Murray, a two-time Cincinnati champion, received a wild card for a third successive tournament; he is slated to begin his summer hard-court swing in Washington next week before playing in Toronto immediately after. The Scotsman is continuing his return from a lengthy hip injury; he pulled out of Wimbledon just before the tournament started.

His ranking has fallen to No. 838, but he can use his protected ranking and continue to receive wild cards to reach tour-level events.

Azarenka, who defeated Serena Williams to win the Cincinnati title five years ago, is likely to begin her hard-court season in San Jose next week. She has played a limited schedule since giving birth in 2016 and dealing with an ensuing custody battle, though she reached the semifinals in her last hard court event, in Miami.

Williams and Roger Federer headline the fields in Cincinnati, where play begins Aug. 13.

Grand Slam

(VIDEO) Australian Open Day Four: American Men Continue To Exceed Expectations

Ben Rothenberg from The New York Times joins Ubitennis to discuss the unexpected run of good fortune for American players in the men’s draw at Melbourne Park. The two also discuss why Roger Federer will not be looking forward to his third round match.

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Taylor Fritz (image via https://twitter.com/AustralianOpen)

The fourth day of the Australian Open saw few surprises. Both Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer progressed to the third round with straight sets victories. Nick Kyrgios was in solid form during his triumph over Gilles Simon. As for the women’s draw, Simona Halep and Karolina Pliskova experienced little difficult during their second round matches.  

 

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ATP

Daniil Medvedev Eyes Further Improvement Despite Straight Sets Win At Australian Open

The world No.4 rates his performance so far in the grand slam tournament.

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Daniil Medvedev (image via https://twitter.com/AustralianOpen)

Fourth seed Daniil Medvedev believes he is yet to reach full throttle at the Australian Open after cruising into the third round of the tournament with a straight sets victory.

 

The US Open runner-up eased to a 7-5, 6-1, 6-3, win over Spanish qualifier Pedro Martinez Portero. Who was playing in the main draw of a grand slam for only the second time in his career at the age of 22. Dropping serve only one during the match, Medvedev blasted 19 aces and 40 winners past his rival. He also won 74% of his first service points.

Through to the last 32 in Melbourne Park for the second year in a row, the 23-year-old still believes that he could improve further on the court. Earlier in the week he also defeated Frances Tiafoe, who was a quarter-finalist at the Australian Open last year.

“I think there are still some things to improve. I think I could be more aggressive few moments of the match.” Said Medvedev.
“At the same time when you win three sets, you don’t want to discuss too much your level or something.’
“Of course, my next match is going to be completely different, so I’m happy with the win and happy to finally win in three sets without a tiebreak.”

As well as battling Martinez on the court, Medvedev was also forced to temporarily halt his match due to a nose bleed. Which occurred during the second set when he was leading 5-0. The Russian insisted that his bleed was not tension related and is something he has gotten used to.

“Let’s say it happens maybe two times a year or maybe once.” He said.
“I remember it actually happened last year Australian Open in first round. I think it was the only time last year, so it can happen sometimes but it’s nothing.”

Medvedev is one of a group of players who have been tipped to break the dominance of the Big Three in grand slam tennis this year. A group consisting of Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer. Last year he won 59 matches on the ATP Tour, which was more than anybody else.

Despite the high expectations, the world No.4 is playing down the hype surrounding him. Branding the Australian Open as ‘just another slam.’ It was during the last major at New York, where he reached his first final before losing to Nadal in three sets.

“I don’t know about other people, but for me, it’s just another slam where I have to win round by round again and again, where I had two tough rounds in my opinion in terms of games, especially the first one against Frances.” He stated.
“So I just take it as any new tournament, as an ATP one, any tournament I play. I just take it round by round. I try to win my matches.”

This year, Medvedev is seeking to go beyond the round round in Melbourne for the first time in his career.

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(VIDEO) Australian Open Day Three: Roger Federer Gains Momentum As Wind Causes Havoc

It was a blustery day at Melbourne Park but it failed to derail the big names in the tournament.

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Playing in only his second competitive match of 2020, Roger Federer has reminded his rivals of the threat he posed with a clinical win over Filip Krajinović where he dropped only five games. Meanwhile, Novak Djokovic was in equally impressive shape during his victory over Japan’s Tatsuma Ito. In the women’s draw a fiery Serena Williams also blasted her was into the third round.

 

Ubitennis’ Ubaldo Scanagatta reviews all the action that took place on Wednesday.

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