Is It Slow Or Not? - Players Disagree With Roger Federer Over Court Speed At ATP Finals - UBITENNIS
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Is It Slow Or Not? – Players Disagree With Roger Federer Over Court Speed At ATP Finals

Marin Cilic and Alexander Zverev give their opinion about the playing conditions in London this year.

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Roger Federer’s suggestion that his fellow rivals at the ATP Finals are making ‘minor adjustments’ to their game to accommodate the speed of the court has generated a mixed response.

Federer, who has won the season-ending championships six times during his career, said with confidence that the court at The O2 Arena was playing slower than previous tournaments. He made the comment following his shock loss to Kei Nishikori on Sunday. A lackluster performance that saw him produce 34 unforced errors as he won only 29% of return points throughout the match.

“I think it plays different or it’s definitely slower than I think the last three tournaments that I’ve played. So I think everybody’s making a minor adjustment, you know. So am I.” Said Federer.

It is tough to argue against the world No.3 given his experience in the tournament. He has won a record 55 matches and made 16 appearances at the ATP Finals. Overall he has featured in 10 finals at the tournament so far in his career. Nevertheless, some do doubt the assessment of the court speed made by Federer.

“I think this kind of court is, when you get a few matches on it and when it gets used, becomes a bit quicker. I think it’s just normal.” Said Marin Cilic, who is making his fourth appearance at The o2.
“I don’t think it (the court) is much different from last year, it is more or less the same. It can vary from the air conditioning inside the stadium. Generally, it plays quite the same.” He added.

Alexander Zverev kicked-off his campaign on Monday with a victory over Cilic. Like his Croatian rival, he also believes the court is quick. Hitting a series of aces that exceeded the 140 mph mark. Weighing in on the debate over court speed, he describes the surface as ‘weird.’ The court is made up of acrylic placed on top of wood.

“The court is very weird.” Said Zverev. “When you hit it flat and hard like Cilic does, the court is very fast. When you hit it with more topspin, the court takes it away and it bounces up. It’s more different than other tournaments.”
“For me, it is pretty quick.” He added.

Federer will return to action on Tuesday when he takes on Dominic Thiem in what is a crucial match in the round-robin event. Leading up to the clash, he has canceled a scheduled practice session at The Queen’s Club with no official word given about the reason.

The 37-year-old has only ever failed to the semifinal stage of the ATP Finals once before.

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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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