Ubitennis Wins Top Sports Media Award - UBITENNIS
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Ubitennis Wins Top Sports Media Award

1,273 candidates from 119 countries: the AIPS has chosen 3 winners for 8 media categories. Ubitennis and its chief editor, Ubaldo Scanagatta, are among the winners and will receive their award in Lausanne. The ground-breaking article “Ramos was right in Serena’s controversy” about the US Open final between Osaka and Serena Williams proved to be the winning piece.

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1,273 candidates submitted their work for a shot at the first international sport media competition organized by the AIPS (the International Sports Press Association) and Ubitennis are pleased to announced that we have won an award. Placing among the top three websites around the world.

The AIPS will hand out awards to the three best journalists in eight different categories: Video Documentary, Video Athlete Profile, Audio, Writing Best Column, Writing Best Colour Piece, Weblog, Photography Sport Action and Photography Portfolio.

I had never submitted my work for an award in my life as I always had very little faith in myself and these type of competitions. The AIPS was founded in 1924 when Paris hosted the Olympic Games. The abbreviation for the name of the association is based on the French spelling of Association Internationale de la Presse Sportive. This year in September my curiosity got the best of me when I received the following video:

I thought that my article about the US Open final, which was surprisingly won by Naomi Osaka over Serena Williams could be a good fit for the Weblog category. The match will be remembered for Serena’s outbursts with chair umpire Carlos Ramos and her words in her post-match press conference, during which Williams accused Ramos of sexism. Naomi Osaka was crowned US Open champion in a very hostile environment with spectators that protested against the outcome of the match and booed the Japanese player without even knowing exactly what happened during Serena’s controversy.

Carlos Ramos, Donna Kelso, Brian Earley and Serena Williams – US Open 2018 (photo by Art Seitz, 2018)

While submitting my article for the AIPS awards, I realized that I wasn’t alone in this journey and I had the strength of a website such as Ubitennis behind me. Ubitennis is the only tennis website available in three different languages with 12 million views per year and 30 million pages viewed and certified by Google Analytics. The website can count on plenty of talented collaborators and interactive readers, whose posts and comments amount to 650,000 per year.

Ubitennis has been a great school for many young (and not so young) aspiring journalists, who have been given the opportunity to cover international tennis events in the most prestigious and historical venues while acquiring the necessary skills to become professional journalists and reporters for different media outlets, such as TV, radio, websites, magazines, press offices and several other platforms.

I am not sure if the 19 AIPS international judges took into account all of those factors while selecting the top 3 nominees, but I would like to think that it might be the case. I have personally covered 150 Grand Slams, 7 Olympic Games, 4 America’s Cup and the Swimming World Championships. Meanwhile, Ubitennis collaborators have covered more than 200 tournaments as a testament to Ubitennis’ quality and value.

My professional history as a journalist has also provided me with a great deal of personal accolades, such as the recognition I received at this year’s US Open.

I am getting ready to cover my 28th Australian Open and also attend the awards ceremony in Switzerland, which happens to be in the middle of the first Slam of the year. Even if the two locations are very far from each other and the jet lag is not easy to deal with, I would like to attend both events.

The 20 articles that have been selected among about 100 in the Weblog category are as follows:

  • AKINBODE OGUNTUYI, Sad Ikeme News and the Hidden Consequences for Nigeria, Booday10.com (Nigeria)
  • ANASTASIA SOLOVYEVA, Золото севера. Обзор полётного чемпионата мира в Оберстдорфе (The Gold of the North. Overview of the FIS Ski FlightWorld Championships in Oberstdorf), Sportsru (Russia)
  • CARLOS HERNÁNDEZ, Argentina Taekwondo Open 2018 causó impacto en su 5 ta edición (Argentina Taekwondo Open 2018 made an impact in its fifth edition), www.mundotaekwondo.com (Venezuela)
  • GIDEON KOFI NYAMEKYE, Stephen Appiah: The Meteoric Rise of an Urchin to a Soccer Churchill , Kickgh.com (Ghana)
  • JAMES M DORSEY, Parallels between Turkish soccer and general elections could prove uncanny, Middeast Soccer (Singapore)
  • JHON OSORIO, Tour 2018 – Día 12: El día que Egan se graduó (Tour 2018 – Day 12: The day in which Egan graduated) , El rincón de JJ/Blogs El Espectador (Colombia)
  • JOSE RODRIGUEZ, Vida en medio de muerte subita (Life in the midst of sudden death), Capitanes de Arecibo BSN (Puerto Rico)
  • JUAN CARLOS ROSALES MIELES, Pierre de Haiti a Francia y al mundo (Pierre of Haiti aims from France and the world) , Gimnasialatina.com (Argentina)
  • KAZUYUKI YAMAGUCHI, Le Journal Sportive, pressports.com (Japan)
  • LUCIAN OPREA, Tenis total: SIMONA HALEP, CAMPIOANA LA ROLAND GARROS (Total Tennis: SIMONA HALEP, ROLAND GARROS CHAMPION), Lucianopreasport (Romania)
  • MA DEXING, 我所亲历的这些年精英青少年足球》系列报道 (The Years of Elite Youth Football I Have Experienced”), Dexingshe-official (China)
  • MARCOS PAULO SOUZA LIMA, Blog Drible de Corpo (Body Dribble), Correio Braziliense (Brazil)
  • MICAELA PISERCHIA, El patín no es cuestión de nenas (Figure skating is not a matter for girls), Argentina Amateur Deporte (Argentina)
  • MIRIAM TERRUZZI, Spirito del Lupo (Spirit of the Wolf), E mi alzo sui pedali (Italy)
  • NICK BUTLER, Nick Butler: There is a gap between the values sport has, wants to have and should have, insidethegames.biz (United Kingdom)
  • ROBERT LIVINGSTONE, BidWeek: As 2026 Olympic Bid Race Begins To Collapse, IOC Must Stop Talking And Do Something, GamesBids.com (Canada)
  • STEFAN NESTLER, Everest-Ski-Permit – eine Farce! (Everest Ski Permit – a farce!), Abenteuer Sport – Blog der Deutschen Welle (DW) (Germany)
  • UBALDO SCANAGATTA, (Ramos was right in Serena’s controversy! Osaka, what a champion!) Ubitennis.com (Italy)
  • YIN MA, Exclusive! A Wechat log between two legendary women, Lang Ping and Li Yan, highlighting their resiliance, We Love Volley (China)
  • YIN MA, Exclusive Interview! The More Splendid, the More Silent. Zhu Ting: With Such Fames, Keep it Better i, We Love Volley (China)

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Past Champions Wozniacki and Kerber Cruise Into Third Round

Caroline Wozniacki and Angelique Kerber continued their search for a second Australian Open with comfortable second round wins.

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Caroline Wozniacki (zimbio.com)

Past Australian Open champions Caroline Wozniacki and Angelique Kerber cruised into the third round with straight sets wins. 

The defending champion Wozniacki made it back-t0-back wins with a crushing 6-1 6-3 win over Sweden’s Johanna Larsson.

While 2016 champion Angelique Kerber proved why she is one of the favourites for the title after a 6-2 6-3 win against Brazilian qualifier Beatriz Haddad Maia.

The German will now play Australian wildcard Kimberly Birrell after she stunned Donna Vekic while Wozniacki could face Maria Sharapova on Friday.

Although it was Wozniacki’s first time of defending a grand slam title, she sure hasn’t looked nervous so far as she went too work against the world number 77.

A break to love in the second game sealed a good start as the Swede was made to pay for early match nerves. In this Scandinavian clash the Dane had 10 break point opportunities as she continued to be aggressive.

After a second break in the sixth, the clinical Wozniacki sealed the opening set in 28 minutes on Margaret Court Arena.

The second set provided fans with a similar pattern as the Dane assumed control by breaking in the third game to love for a 2-0 lead.

Even though Larsson created a couple break points, she wasn’t aggressive in the big moments to capitalise as Wozniacki sealed her fourth break of the match to book her place in the last 32.

A great performance from Wozniacki, who is sending a real message that she has no plans of giving up her title without a fight.

The win from the world number three means she could face Maria Sharapova in the next round, who still has to play Johanna Larsson.

Kerber Continues Good Form

Another player who is sending a real message in world number two and 2016 champion Angelique Kerber who dropped five games in a great win over Beatriz Haddad Maia.

The Brazilian qualifier had to work very hard to keep hold of her serves but was broken three times without reply as the Kerber advanced to the last 32.

In the next round Kerber will now play Australian wildcard Kimberly Birrell after she knocked out 29th seed Donna Vekic 6-4 4-6 6-1.

The world number 200 is making the most of her Aussie summer as she makes the last 32 of her own slam after sealing her first top 10 win in Brisbane earlier this year against Daria Kasatkina.

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Angelique Kerber Eases Past Hercog, Goerges Ousted By Collins

Angelique Kerber set a marker for the rest of the tournament to follow after crushing Polona Hercog 6-2 6-2 in a dominant display in Melbourne.

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Angelique Kerber (zimbio.com)

Angelique Kerber sent a message to the rest of the field after she thrashed Slovenia Polona Hercog 6-2 6-2. 

The world number two has looked impressive all season and continued that form by dropping only four games in her Australian Open opener.

A clinical Kerber converted four of five break point opportunities to seal a comfortable first round win and will face Beatriz Haddad Maia in the next round.

However the Melbourne heat got the better of 14th seed as she was ousted out of the Australian Open by in-form Danielle Collins 2-6 7-6(5) 6-4.

The 2016 champion headed into this year’s Australian Open having won five of her six matches to start the season in Hopman Cup and Sydney, with her only defeating coming to Petra Kvitova.

It was easy to see why she was one of the favourites to win the title early on as she dominated the Slovenian early on with her impeccable groundstrokes.

A 4-1 lead was secured in very quick fashion as the world number 92 was facing a very difficult task to try and outsmart the three time grand slam champion.

The 30 year old was only forced to save one break point in the first set as she won the opener in 38 minutes. Although Hercog had forced the issue a bit more in the second set, the same result was produced as Kerber opened up another 4-1 lead.

The Slovenian failed to convert any of her three break points as her 47 unforced errors would prove costly. Eventually Kerber served out a 74 minute win to progress into the next round.

After the match the German stated that she felt good despite the heat, “I am feeling and my body was feeling good and I’m happy I could play a little more than one hour today.”

The German who will be seen as a favourite for the tournament will now play Beatriz Haddad Maia of Brazil in the next round.

Goerges Stunned By Heat And Collins

However it wasn’t a good day for another German as 14th seed Julia Goerges crashed out in a three set defeat to powerful American Danielle Collins.

The American played a very good last set and a half to take out the Auckland winner 2-6 7-6(5) 6-4 in brutal heat. The loss will be even more frustrating for Goerges who served for the match at 6-5 in the second set.

It’s good news for Kerber though as she was scheduled to play Goerges in the fourth round and will now avoid the big-serving German in the last 16.

As for Danielle Collins she could produce a big threat in the tournament as she has an all-American clash with Sachia Vickery in the next round.

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Serena’s Bid, Halep’s Test and Wozniacki’s Mission: Five Australian Open Storylines To Follow In The Women’s Draw

What will the always unpredictable WTA Tour produce in Melbourne Park this year?

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It has been almost four years since the same woman won two grand slam titles in a row. The WTA Tour is renowned for its unpredictability, which draws an equal amount of criticism and excitement from fans. There is no telling what that this year’s Australian Open will bring, but here are the main topic’s to follow in the women’s draw.

Serena eyes No.24

During her comeback season last year, it was a case of so near, but so far for Serena Williams. Twice the American came within touching distance of equalling Margaret Court’s all-time record for most grand slam titles. At Wimbledon, she suffered a comprehensive defeat to Angelique Kerber. Then at the US Open she was outplayed by Naomi Osaka in a final that was overshadowed by her clash with umpire Carlos Ramos.

“Last year she made an incredible effort to come back in shape after having a baby and actually she came back in a decent shape quite fast,” Williams’ coach Patrick Mouratoglou said.
“It was a big deal. She had a lot of medical issues after the delivery but she definitely was not 100 percent.
“And I think she’s fitter now … she came back (this season) to a very, very high level of fitness.
“So she’s ready. She’s ready to compete and when Serena’s ready to compete, she’s ready to win.”

Already a seven-time Australian Open champion, should she win again Williams would become the most successful female player in the Open Era to ever participate at the tournament. Her first triumph was in 2003 and last was in 2017, when she defeated sister Venus in the final.

“I think it’s possible for Serena to equal me,” Court told Melbourne’s Herald Sun newspaper Sunday. “If anybody’s gonna do it, it’s Serena, but I don’t think there’s a clear-cut favourite.
“I think it’s a pretty open tournament and I think an outsider can win it.”

Williams is yet to play a WTA Tournament this season heading into Melbourne. The only indication her current form occurred on December 27th when she defeated Venus in an exhibition match at Mubadala World Tennis Championships.

The former world No.1 will make her 18th appearance in the main draw. The event where she made her grand slam debut back in 1998. At present she has a 89% winning record at the event (81-10).

Williams will take on Tatjana Maria in the first round.

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