Rogers Cup Wednesday Preview: The Men’s and Women’s Match of the Day - UBITENNIS
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Rogers Cup Wednesday Preview: The Men’s and Women’s Match of the Day

Almost all remaining players in the singles draws are on Wednesday’s Order of Play

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In Montreal, the schedule will include Wimbledon Champion Angelique Kerber in her first match since her third Major title.  World Number One Simona Halep and Number Two Caroline Wozniacki will also make their returns to action. In a Wimbledon rematch, Karolina Pliskova will try to avenge her fourth round loss to Kiki Bertens.  And Maria Sharapova will face an entertaining fellow Russian who is 10 years her junior in Daria Kasatkina.

In Toronto, the Canadians will be on full display on Centre Court, with Denis Shapovalov, Milos Raonic, and 18-year-old birthday boy Felix Auger-Aliassime.  The rest of the men’s schedule is anything but shabby, and features Nadal, Djokovic, Wawrinka, Del Potro, and Zverev.

Elina Svitolina vs. Mihaela Buzarnescu

This will be the third time these two meet in the past three months, and on a third different surface.  But will the result differ? Buzarnescu has defeated Svitolina in straight sets in both of their previous matches, most notably at this year’s Roland Garros.  Mihaela has been one of the best players on tour in 2018, as the 30-year-old is having a career-year. A year ago, she was ranked 139th in the world.  Now Buzarnescu is inside the top 20 for the first time, thanks to already notching 39 match wins this year.  Just last week, she won her first-ever WTA title in San Jose. Svitolina is the defending champion at the Rogers Cup, and has three titles in 2018.  However, she’s had a rough go of it since defending her title in Rome: she’s just 4-3 in her last three events. All the momentum is on Buzarnescu’s side, and the pressure to defend 900 ranking points is on Svitolina.  It’s not often the number five player in the world is considered an underdog in their opening match of a tournament, but that just may be the case here.

Fabio Fognini vs. Denis Shapovalov

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Can Shapovalov repeat his magical run from last year’s Rogers Cup?  He got off to a strong start on Tuesday with a straightforward win over Jeremy Chardy.  But on Wednesday, he’ll face one of the hottest players on tour. Fognini already has three titles this year, two of which came in the past three weeks.  Fabio prevailed on the clay of Bastad, and then just last week upset Del Potro to win the title in Los Cabos on a hard court. When Fabio is on, he’s capable of beating almost anyone, and he’s certainly playing with a lot of confidence right now.  In their first career meeting, Shapovalov may need all the energy from the crowd he can get to take out the talented Italian. Unfortunately for Denis, this match is scheduled for the day session, and likely won’t have the same electric atmosphere as many of Shapovalov’s night matches from a year ago.  That’s advantage Fognini.

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Acapulco Faces Safety Issues Ahead Of ATP 500 Tournament

Acapulco faces safety and infrastructure issues before the ATP 500 tournament next week.

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Acapulco has faced safety concerns ahead of the tournament as players have been advised to stay in the tournament hotels or tennis venues.

As exclusively revealed by James Gray of the i newspaper, Acapulco is facing security and infrastructure concerns ahead of the tournament.

ATP players have reportedly been told in an email to stay confined to the tournament hotels and the tennis venue as crime rates have increased in the city.

Organisers in Mexico have reassured people that players will be able to train safely with the following statement, “The Arena GNP, venue for the Mexican Open of Tennis, and the host hotel are currently operational to carry out the tournament,” the tournament organisers told the i newspaper.

“Since Tuesday, we have been receiving players in Acapulco, and they have already had the opportunity to train at the venue.”

However there are still infrastructural problems including lack of flights to Acapulco as well as other safety concerns which have been affected by Hurricane Otis.

Despite the problems the ATP seem confident that the event will be safe and secure ahead of the ATP 500 event, “It is not uncommon for players to receive security advisories from ATP as a precautionary measure across more than 250 Tour and Challenger Tour events each season,” A spokesperson told the i newspaper.

“The advisory sent for Acapulco factors in the additional complexity of Hurricane Otis’ disruption. There have been major efforts and investment to restore the Acapulco venue in recent months.”

The ATP 500 event in Acapulco will take place next week with Alex De Minaur being the defending champion.

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Ons Jabeur’s Latest Withdrawal Raises Doubts Over Season Ambitions

Ons Jabeur will be hoping to re-energize herself ahead of a big few months in her career.

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Ons Jabeur’s latest withdrawal in Dubai has raised doubts over how successful the Tunisian can be this season.

Despite having high hopes for revitalizing her season in Dubai, Ons Jabeur has had another setback in 2024.

The Tunisian was forced to withdraw from one of her favourite tournaments of the year in Dubai due to a knee injury.

This withdrawal came days after Jabeur said she was ready for the challenge in Dubai and was excited to compete in front of a passionate crowd in Dubai.

In a statement Jabeur explained her injury and why she was unable to compete in Dubai this week, “After consultation of my doctors and team we have decided that I will have to withdraw from Dubai this week and go for more medical treatments,” Jabeur was quoted by tennishead as saying.

“Looking forward to reconnect with all on the courts for the US swing. Thank you for your continuous support.”

This latest setback isn’t a coincidence though as Jabeur has struggled with injuries ever since her Wimbledon final.

The mental and physical toll that the last eight months have taken of Jabeur are starting to show.

There doesn’t seem to be a plan in place as Jabeur has been open about her mental health struggles since that comprehensive defeat to Marketa Vondrousova at Wimbledon.

That’s a potential problem for Jabeur going forwards as it continues to get tougher for the world number six to find motivation going forwards.

A long break away from tennis may be beneficial for Jabeur as it feels like this summer may be the Tunisian’s last opportunity at Grand Slam glory.

An innovative and new approach may be required for Jabeur as her physical and mental stamina continues to fade with every week.

However will Jabeur manage reinvent herself before it’s too late? Only time will tell and SW19 may be the final destination in that bid.

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Iga Swiatek ‘Proud’ After Claiming Doha Title

World number one Iga Swiatek won her 18th career title in Doha.

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Iga Swiatek defeated Elena Rybakina 7-6(8) 6-2 to claim the title in Doha.

The world number one sealed an 18th career title with a straight sets win over Rybakina.

Swiatek had previously struggled to beat the Kazakh and that continued at the start of the opening set with the Pole conceding a double break deficit at 4-1.

However Swiatek was resilient as she won four games in a row to get back on track in the opening set.

Rybakina broke in the eleventh game and had the opportunity to serve for the opening set but couldn’t take the opportunity.

In the tiebreak, Swiatek converted her fourth set point as she claimed a mammoth tiebreak 10-8.

After that Swiatek seized control as she broke twice after saving two break points in the second game.

The Pole held comfortably to claim her maiden title of the 2024 season in what was her first tournament since a third round exit at the Australian Open.

In her-post match speech Swiatek admitted that she is proud of her performance in Doha this week, “You don’t even know hard it was not to think about it,” Swiatek was quoted by France 24 as saying after winning her 13th match in Doha.

“I came here and was pretty stressed because I felt the expectations. I wanted to do everything step by step like I always do. I’m really happy. I’m really proud of myself.”

Swiatek will now look to continue that form in Dubai next week where she takes on either Sloane Stephens or Clara Burel in her opening round match.

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