Denis Shapovalov: "The goal was just to stay inside the top 50 at the start of 2018" - UBITENNIS
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Denis Shapovalov: “The goal was just to stay inside the top 50 at the start of 2018”

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Denis Shapovalov ended the 2018 season ranked world number 27th after an impressive season, in which he reached three semifinals in the Madrid Masters 1000 tournament, Delray Beach and Tokyo. He scored 35 wins to become the youngest player since Rafael Nadal and Richard Gasquet in 2005 to enter the top 30.

The Canadian teenager born in 1999 in Tel Aviv to Tessa and Viktor Shapovalov is the youngest player in the top 100 and the only player born in 1999 besides this year’s Next Gen ATP Finals runner-up Alex De Minaur. Shapovalov beat De Minaur in the 2016 Wimbledon Junior final.

He made a major breakthrough in July 2017 became the youngest player ever to reach a Masters 1000 semifinal at the Montreal Rogers Cup, where he beat Juan Martin Del Potro, Rafa Nadal and Adrian Mannarino before losing to Alexander Zverev.

Shapovalov reached the third round at the US Open in 2017 and became the third youngest player in history in the last 25 years to break into the top 50 after Lleyton Hewitt and Rafael Nadal.

After skipping the 2018 next Gen ATP Final in Milan due to exhaustion Shapovalov will start his preparation for the 2019 season, where he is aiming to reach the top 20. He will start the 2019 season in Auckland.

“For me the goal was just to stay inside the top 50 at the start of the 2018 season. To be able to finish the year at the 27th position, it’s huge for me. It’s pretty inspiring and motivating to keep going forward, so that next year I can keep growing and keep improving my ranking”, said Shapovalov.

Shapovalov’s mother Tessa played for the Russian tennis team and moved from Russia to Tel Aviv with Denis’ father when the former Soviet Union was collapsing. The family moved to Canada before Denis’ first birthday. Denis started playing tennis at the Richmond Hill Country Club, where his mother got a job as a tennis coach two weeks after arriving in Toronto from Tel Aviv.

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‘You’re A F***ing Disgrace’ – Nick Kyrgios Erupts At The Miami Open

Another tournament, another on-court controversy involving the former top 20 player.

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Nick Kyrgios (photo by Chryslène Caillaud, copyright @Sport Vision)

Australia’s Nick Kyrgios is in line for another hefty fine after blasting the umpire following his doubles match with partner Taylor Fritz.

Kyrgios, who is no stranger to either controversy or fines, completely lost his cool after being edged out of the doubles. Losing 6-7(4), 7-6(3), 8-10, to Guido Pella and Joao Sousa. Throughout the match there was a series of dubious line calls that infuriated the Kyrgios team. Something the racket-smashing 23-year-old complained to the umpire about seconds after the clash.

“What the f**k is wrong with you?” Kyrgios shouted at the umpire. “You’re a f**king disgrace. F**king disgrace.”

Continuing to unleash his rage on the court, Kyrgios interacted with the crowd. Asking them  ‘Do you think that’s alright, yes or no?’ The outburst was caught on camera by one fan, who uploaded in onto his Twitter account.

‘Just give me the answer. He’s a disgrace. ‘I come out and give 100% and I have to deal with idiots like him. Does he get fined for his mistakes? It’s rubbish, man.’ Kyrgios said.

It is not the first time the world No.33 has raised eyebrows for his actions. He previously served a brief ban from the sport in 2016 for unsportsmanlike conduct during the Shanghai Masters. Meanwhile, last June he was fined more than $17,000 for making a lewd gesture during the Fever-Tree Championships in London.

The controversy is a stark contrast to Kyrgios’ opening match in the singles. Taking on Alexander Bublik, he prevailed 7-5, 6-3, with the help of a fairly disciplined and mature performance. He is already a two-time semi-finalist in Miami and has won more matches (11) at the tournament than any other Masters 1000 event.

“I know he’s a player who tries to keep things on his own terms… kind of reminds me of me a little bit,” he said of Bublik. “He just needs to play those bigger points with a little more discipline. Strange me saying that…
“I thought he was going to put me on a couple of highlight reels. I knew he was trying to at some stage. I knew I had to be the disciplined one of the two today.”

Kyrgios will return to the Miami Court’s on Sunday when he play’s Dusan Lajovic in the third round.

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Angelique Kerber Exits Miami By Branding Andreescu A ‘Drama Queen’

It was a very frosty ending to the match between the two at the Hard Rock Stadium.

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Angelique Kerber (photo by Chryslène Caillaud, copyright @Sport Vision)

Angelique Kerber’s run at the 2019 Miami Open won’t be remembered so much for tennis, but for the words she said following her final match.

The two-time grand slam champion bowed out 6-4, 4-6, 6-1, in the third round on Saturday night to Bianca Andreescu. Suffering her second loss to the Canadian in as many weeks following their clash in the final at Indian Wells. During what was a tense encounter between those two, the match was overshadowed by a frosty handshake at the end. During which Kerber called the 18-year-old “the biggest drama queen ever.

Questioned about the comment afterwards, world No.24 Andreescu said she didn’t hear what was said at the time. She is now on a 10-match winning streak and is undefeated against top 10 opposition this year. Andreescu ended 2018 ranked 178th in the world.

“She said something, but I’m not sure what,” New York Times journalist Ben Rothenberg quoted her as saying. “I just didn’t say anything, whatever, I’m not trying to focus on that. I’ll just let my tennis talk.”

It is unclear as to what lead up to the jibe from Kerber. During their match in Indian Wells, Andressce requested a medical time out during the deciding set. Something that might have been interpreted as a tactical time out. However, the teenager did have a couple minor injury issues coming into that match. Nevertheless, Kerber praised her afterwards.

“She played good, especially in the third set. When she had the chances, she just goes for it. Yeah, she put the balls in the court. At the end, she deserved to win.” The German said.
“She played the whole tournament good. I know that I had to play my best tennis. But, yeah, at the end, I was not able to take my chances, but she did it.” Kerber added.

Following her latest loss, Journalist Jannik Schneider described Kerber as ‘downhearted’ as she addressed the media in the mixed zone at the Miami Open. Revealing that the 31-year-old currently has some sort of thigh issue, but it is unclear how severe it is. Could Kerber’s words be out of frustration and nothing other than that?


Next up for Andreescu will be Estonia’s Anett Kontaveit in the fourth round.

 

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David Ferrer Books Showdown With Alexander Zverev In Final Miami Open

The former world No.3 has made a winning start to his last ever appearance at the Masters 1000 event.

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David Ferrer pictured at the 2018 Miami Open (photo by Chryslène Caillaud, copyright @Sport Vision)

Whilst the end of his career is in sight, David Ferrer has illustrated that he still has the ability to compete at the top level of the sport.

The 36-year-old, who will officially retire in May, dropped just five games during his 6-3, 6-2, win over Sam Querrey in the first round of the Miami Masters. Winning 81% of his first service points and dropping serve only once throughout the encounter. Ferrer was also able to capitalize on a mixed display from Querrey, who produced a costly 34 unforced errors. More than three-times his tally of 10.

“I enjoyed it a lot. It’s Miami, a lot of people have supported me all these years. For me, it’s a great experience to play in this new stadium,” Ferrer told TennisTV. “I’m really happy because I played really good… I am doing my goal, and my goal is to be competitive.”

The Spaniard is making his 17th consecutive appearance in Miami this year. Since making his debut back in 2003, Ferrer has won 33 out of 49 matches played at the event. In 2013 he reached the final before being denied the title by Andy Murray. He has also reached the quarter-finals or better on five other occasions.

Ferrer’s next opponent comes in the shape of Alexander Zverev. A player who was only six when Ferrer played his first match in Miami. Their head-to-head is in favour of the German, who leads 4-2 and has won their four most recent meetings on the tour. Their most recent clash occurred last month in Acapulco, where Zverev prevailed in straight sets.

“It’s going to be tough, the last few times I’ve lost (against him).” Ferrer admits. “I know he’s an incredible player, he’s number three in the world. So I will have to play really good to beat him. I will try my best and enjoy every point that I play.”

Currently ranked 155th in the world, Ferrer is set to play his final competitive match at the Madrid Open. He is one of only four active players on the tour to achieve 700 or more wins. During his career, Ferrer has won 27 ATP titles and finished seven seasons in the world’s top 10.

 

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