Teenage Qualifier Bianca Andreescu Stuns Venus Williams In Auckland - UBITENNIS
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Teenage Qualifier Bianca Andreescu Stuns Venus Williams In Auckland

The fairytale run of the 18-year-old continues at the ASB Classic.

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Prior to this week, 18-year-old Bianca Andreescu had never defeated a top 10 player in her career. Now she has achieved two within as many days.

 

Following up on her shock win over Caroline Wozniacki on Thursday, qualifier Andreescu has knocked out former world No.1 Venus Williams 6-7(1), 6-1, 6-3, in the quarter-finals at the ASB Classic. The world No.152 looked on course to defeat after trailing the match by a set and a break. Then an extraordinary turn of events saw the Canadian break a lacklustre Williams six consecutive times as she won 11 games in a row.

“I believe that anything is impossible and tonight I think I did the impossible.” Andreescu said during her on-court interview. “I don’t know what to say, It’s such an amazing feeling.”

Andreescu’s tenacious play on the court was one that drew numerous mistakes from her 38-year-old rival, who made her professional debut almost six years before she was born. Williams produced almost four times more errors than winners. Ending the match with a tally of 46 unforced errors to 12 winners. In comparison, Andreescu’ achieved a ratio of 53 to 39.

“My goal was to qualify and maybe get a couple rounds in.” She said.
“I believed in myself until the end. I fought and I really enjoyed myself.”

Born in Mississauga, Ontario and of Romanian descent, Andreescu is a two-time grand slam doubles champion in the juniors that was ranked as high as third in the world. Her win over Williams moves the teenager into her first WTA semi-final and she is set to crack the top-115 for the first time in her career.

Andreescu will play either third seed Hsieh Su-Wei or Spain’s Sara Sorribes Tormo in the next round.

Goerges survives

Earlier in the day, defending champion Julia Goerges battled her way past Eugenie Bouchard 3-6, 6-3, 7-6(6), after more than two-and-a-half hours of play. The German second seed trailed 0-3 in the decider and then had to save a match point before snatching the win from Bouchard in the decisive tiebreaker.

“For these conditions it was a pretty good match. We both made the best out of it and overall I’m very satisfied,” Goerges said afterwards.
“I think the best part of my game today was finding solutions, trying to find way to come back in that third set, which I did really well.
“Overall, with these conditions sometimes you can’t do something and it looks amateur, because some balls you just don’t know where they’re coming, they’re just flying somewhere.
“For the conditions, it was a good match, especially the third set and the tiebreak.”

Next up for Goerges will be Slovakia’s Viktoria Kuzmova, who will be bidding to reach her first WTA final at the age of 20. The world No.50 overcame American wildcard Amanda Anisimova 6-3, 2-6, 6-4, earlier in the week.

The two players have played against each other three times last year with Goerges winning all of those matches in straight sets.

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Alexei Popyrin and Alex Bolt crown a perfect day for Australian tennis at Wimbledon’s first qualifying round

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All eight Australian players came through the first Wimbledon qualifying round at Roehampton.

 

Teenager Alexei Popyrin defeated Argentina’s Federico Coria 6-2 7-5. The Aussie 19-year-old Next Gen player is currently in 11th place in the ATP Race to Milan and reached the third round at last January’s Australian Open, where he lost to eventual semifinalist Lucas Pouille. Popyrin has not played a match on grass since playing the Wimbledon Junior tournament in 2016.

Former Australian star Pat Cash, who won at Wimbledon in 1987, has joined Popyrin’s team at Wimbledon and was in his corner.

“I slipped a couple of times here and there, but I like the grass. It suits my game pretty well and we have got a few things to work on with the team, but we will get there”, said Popyrin.

Alex Bolt came back from a set and a break down to beat Italian 17-year-old rising star Jannik Sinner 2-6 7-5 12-10 after 2 hours and 36 minutes.

“I got out of jail free card there. I don’t know how I won that. For a set and and a half Jannik completely outplayed me and I could not have a play on the ball. He was by far the better player on court. He played some quality tennis and I just weathered the storm”, said Bolt.

Jason Kubler overcame Switzerland’s Henri Laaksonen 6-2 5-7 7-5. Kubler was just two points away from losing the match, as he was serving at 4-5 0-30, but he reeled off 12 points to clinch a hard-fought win.

 Germany’s Dustin Brown beat China’s Zhe Li 7-6 (7-2) 6-3 after 1 hour and 21 minutes. The German player of Jamaican origin recently beat Alexander Zverev to reach the quarter final in Stuttgart. Four years ago he upset Rafael Nadal at Wimbledon.

 

 

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Simona Halep Threatens To Boycott Fed Cup If Revamp Takes Place

The 27-year-old has criticised proposals to change the format of the team competition.

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Simona Halep (photo by chryslène caillaud, copyright @Sport Vision)

Former world No.1 Simona Halep has said she will stop playing in the Fed Cup if the International Tennis Federation removes home and away ties from the competition.

 

In recent months there has been speculation that the women’s team event will soon follow the path of the Davis Cup, which has undergone a controversial reform. Where the finals will take place at the end of a year over a week in a neutral location. The driving force behind the changes to the Davis Cup is Kosmos. An investment company founded by Barcelona footballer Gerald Pique. Kosmos has pledged to invest $3 billion over 25 years.

“I love the Fed Cup and I would never change that,” Reuters News quoted Halep as telling reporters in Eastbourne on Monday.
“If Fed Cup changes I won’t play any more. I like the format now so if they change, it will be tough because Fed Cup means to play home and away.”

Halep helped guide Romania to the semi-finals of the Fed Cup this year in what has been their best performance since 1973. Overall, she has won 22 out of 32 matches played since her debut back in 2010.

“To play at home, it’s the best feeling,” she said.
“I’ve played many years in Fed Cup and the best feeling is to be at home with all the people that come to support and also away you have to manage the emotions and the pressure.”

Earlier this month, ITF president Davis Haggerty vowed to revamp the Fed Cup in order to keep it in line with the men’s equivalent. Although he hasn’t outline an exact date as to when this will take place. Haggerty is seeking re-election this year and has outlined his plans in his manifesto.

“Fed Cup reform is a key focus of the Board in 2019, with the ambition to implement a similar Fed Cup World Cup of Tennis with a minimum of 16 teams in the World Group 2020 and to play one round of qualifying and an eight or 12-team Fed Cup Final in April 2020 in one location. This also aligns with the ITF Gender Equality initiative that we introduced in 2018 and continues to ensure tennis is a welcoming sport.” Sport Business quoted Haggerty as saying.

On Thursday an announcement is expected to be made about the future of the Fed Cup by the ITF in a press conference.

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‘Devastated’ British No.3 Katie Boulter Withdraws From Wimbledon

There is bad news for home fans at this year’s Wimbledon Championships.

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Katie Boulter (photo by Chryslène Caillaud, copyright @Sport Vision)

One of Britain’s top female players has said they are ‘absolutely devastated’ to withdraw from the Wimbledon Championships after failing to recover in time from injury.

 

Katie Boulter confirmed on Sunday that she has decided to withdraw from the grand slam following medical advice. The world No.127 hasn’t played a match since the Fed Cup back in April due to a back injury. Pulling out of French Open, where she still received a payment of £20,000, as well as a series of grass-court events.

‘As you are all aware, I’ve recently been recovering from a back injury that I suffered during Great Britain’s Fed Cup victory back in April,’ Boulter said in a statement published on social media.
‘The road to recovery has had its ups and downs; at various points along the way I’ve been very close to getting back on court and competing, but unfortunately I’m not quite ready in time for Wimbledon, and on the advice of my medical team, I’ve made the decision to give my recovery a couple more weeks.”

Boulter has been ranked as high as 82nd in the world and claimed two ITF titles in 2018. However, she is yet to achieve such success so far this season. Failing to win back-to-back main draw matches at six consecutive tournaments prior to her back injury.

‘I am absolutely devastated to be missing my home Grand Slam and the opportunity to play in front of our incredible fans but sadly I won’t be 100% fit.’ Boulter explained.
‘Wimbledon is the most special tournament of the year for me and I can’t wait to get back on the grass courts next year. I’d like to thank everyone for their support over the past few months; it’s only motivated me to come back stronger.’

The 22-year-old made her main draw grand slam debut in Wimbledon back in 2017 where she lost in the first round to Christina McHale. 12 months later she won her first ever grand slam match at the All England Club when she defeated Aleksandra Krunic.

The Wimbledon Championships will get underway a week on Monday.

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