Laslo Djere upsets Dominic Thiem to score his first win against a top 10 player - UBITENNIS
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Laslo Djere upsets Dominic Thiem to score his first win against a top 10 player

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Serbia’s Laslo Djere upset 2017 Rio champion Dominic Thiem 6-3 6-3 in 80 minutes in the opening round at the Rio Open in Rio de Janeiro scoring the first win of his career against a top 10 player.

 

Djere converted five of his eight break points and dropped his serve twice to score the best win of his career.

Thiem earned an early break at 15 at the start of the match with a deep return, but he dropped serve at love in the next game. Djere broke serve again in the eighth game and closed out the opening set in the next game 6-3 after 43 minutes, when Thiem netted a return.

Djere went up an early break at the start of the second set and broke again in the seventh game to build up a 5-2 lead after a backhand error from Thiem. Thiem pulled one break back, when Djere was serving for the match, but the Serbian player closed out the match with a break at love in the ninth game with a forehand return.

Thiem dropped to a 3-4 win-loss record this season. In his previous appearances at the Rio Open he won the title in 2017 and never lost before the quarter final in 2016 and 2018.

“It was a great day. It was the biggest win in my career, so I am really happy right now. I hit the ball really well. He played a bit worse than normally I think. I had a great day. I hit the ball really well, hitting well from the baseline and then attacking well when it was time for that. This is my favourite surface. I know that I can play great tennis on clay”,said Djere.

Last week’s Buenos Aires champion Marco Cecchinato lost to Slovenia’s Aljaz Bedene 7-5 7-6 (7-1) in a match delayed by rain. Bedene got an early break at 1-1, but he dropped serve in the next game with two double faults. Cecchinato took a 5-4 lead, but Bedene won 12 of the next 13 points to win the first set 7-5. Bedene went up a 3-1 lead in the second set after saving a break point. Cecchinato broke back in the 10th game to draw level to 5-5 and held his serve at 15, but he was not able to convert a set point at 6-5. Bedene cruised through to 7-1 in the tie-break.

Bedene will face Brazilian player Thiago Monteiro, who beat Portugal’s Thiago Monteiro 6-3 6-2.

Canadian Next Gen player Felix Auger Aliassime beat world number 16 Fabio Fognini 6-2 6-3. Auger Aliassime saved an early break point before breaking serve in the sixth game. The 18-year-old Canadian player rallied from 0-40 down to get a second break closing out the first set 6-3. Auger Aliassime went up a set and a break in the fourth game to open up a 4-1 lead. Fognini earned a break point in the seventh game but Auger Aliassine saved it for 5-2. Serving for the match in the eighth game Auger Aliassime faced two break points, but he held his serve at love to close out the second set 6-3 at deuce on his third match point.

“It’s at the top with my most memorable wins. You come here, you play the second seed, obviously you are not favoured. You just believe in your tennis, you believe in your game. You work for these wins”, said Auger Aliassime.

Norway’s Next Gen player Casper Ruud cruised past Carlos Berloq 6-1 6-2 in one hour and 28 minutes. Ruud broke serve at 15 in the second game and saved four break points in the next two service games to build up a 4-1 lead. Ruud broke serve in the seventh game, when Berloq hit forehand long, and closed out the first set at 5-1 with a good serve.

Ruud went up a double break ad held his next service games before firing four winners at 5-2 to close out the match.

Roberto Carballes Baena saved three match points at 3-6 in the tie-break of the third set to take a hard-fought 6-3 6-7 (5-7) 7-6 (8-6) win after 2 hours and 59 minutes. The Spaniard won the final five points and sealed the tie-break with a service winner at 7-6.

 

 

 

 

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Grigor Dimitrov Blames Poor Monte Carlo Performance On ‘Big Infection’

The 29-year-old reveals the reason behind his error-stricken performance at the Monte Carlo Country Club on Thursday.

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Bulgaria’s Grigor Dimitrov said he simply ‘didn’t play’ in his latest match at the Monte Carlo Masters after winning just two games against Rafael Nadal.

 

The world No.17 fell 6-1, 6-1, to the 20-time Grand Slam champion in less than an hour on Thursday. He won 48% of his first service points and 32% of his second, as he hit 32 unforced errors. A dismal performance from Dimitrov who had beaten Jan-Lennard Struff and Jeremy Chardy earlier in the tournament.

Whilst it was never going to be easy playing somebody of Nadal’s calibre, Dimitrov has revealed that he had been troubled by an issue away from the court. He has been suffering from a ‘big infection’ in his tooth which has had an impact on his preparation for the match.

“I’ve been struggling with a massive tooth problem for the past four or five days,” he said. “I have a big infection in my tooth. It’s been hard. I haven’t been able to sleep well or eat well or anything like that.’
“I was bearing it for a while this whole week.”

It is another case of bad luck for Dimitrov on the Tour this season. At the Australian Open he reached the quarter-finals in what was his best Grand Slam performance since the 2019 US Open. However, in his last eight showdown with Russia’s Aslan Karatsev he was hindered by a back injury.

“It’s straight to the doctor’s, unfortunately,” he commented on his tooth. “Very, very unpleasant moment. It is what it is.’
“At least I’m glad it happened on a home soil so I can go see my dentist and figure this problem as soon as possible.Hopefully it’s not too serious and I’ll be able to come back as soon as possible.”

Speaking in his press conference, Nadal said he ‘felt sorry’ for his opponent who ‘played a bad match.’ During the match the world No.3 wasn’t aware of Dimitrov’s problem but was told about it afterwards.

“I wish him all the best. He’s a great guy, a good friend. I just hope the situation is to improve as soon as possible,” he said.

Nadal, who is seeking a record 12th title in Monte Carlo, will play Russia’s Andrey Rublev next.

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Dan Evans Fires Back At ‘No Manners’ Musetti

30-year-old Evans says he is not happy with recent comments the Italian has said about him.

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British No.1 Dan Evans has branded fellow player Lorenzo Musetti ‘disrespectful’ after recording the most high-profile win of his career at the Monte Carlo Masters on Thursday.

 

The world No.33 stunned Novak Djokovic 6-4, 7-5, in what is his first ever win over a member of the prestigious Big Three. A trio that consists of Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer. What is even more remarkable is that Evan’s victory took place on the clay. A surface which he hadn’t won a Tour match on since 2017 prior to this week.

Speaking to reporters following his win over the world No.1, Evans was questioned about what was the difference between his match against Musetti last week and his performance in Monte Carlo. Prompting the Brit to hit out at the Italian who is dubbed as one of the rising stars of the Tour.

“How he spoke last week was embarrassing,” Evans said. “Let’s not talk about Musetti in my press conference.
“Last week he said some things in the Italian press about me that was disrespectful.
Musetti, if he apologises, I will answer. He’s a good tennis player, but he’s got no manners.”

The fallout between the two started last week after Musetti won their match at the Sardegna Open. Saving four match points in the final tiebreaker en route to the victory. Afterwards, the 19-year-old accused his rival of disrespecting him on the court.

“There are respectful experienced players on the court,” he said. “Others like Evans, they try to use my youth to (win) matches.
“But it’s all experience for me. Evans disrespected me. I don’t want to be treated like a young man.”

Whilst the two tennis players are unlikely to be friends anytime soon, Evans did praise the recent performance of his rival. Musetti is the youngest player in the top 100 on the men’s Tour and is one of only two players aged 19. The other is compatriot Jannik Sinner.

“He played very well last week. I wasn’t good enough. I didn’t take the match points. It’s just tennis. Yeah, he could do with learning some manners.” He concluded.

Evans is through to the quarter-finals of a Masters 1000 tournament for the first time in his career. Awaiting him in the next round is 11th seed David Goffin who defeated Alexander Zverev in his third round match.

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New Setback Forces Dominic Thiem Out Of Belgrade

The Austrian tennis star has written a blog post on his website titled ‘my knee hurts!”

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Dominic’s Thiem’s return to the Tour has been postponed for a second time due to a physical problem which he recently visited a doctor about.

 

The US Open champion has confirmed that he is currently suffering from pain in his knee and has decided to pull out of next week’s Belgrade Open. An ATP 250 event which will be headlined by world No.1 Novak Djokovic. It is unclear as to what kind of injury Thiem is suffering from or when the pain started. Earlier this year he confirmed that he had been suffering from a long-standing foot issue which gives him intermittent pain. Although there is no indication that these are linked in anyway.

“2021 just doesn’t want to get going. Unfortunately I will have to cancel my start at next week’s tournament in Novak Djokovic’s hometown Belgrade,” Thiem wrote in a statement. “My knee hurts and I went to see a doctor. It is not a big issue but I need to take care of it. I am definitely not fit enough to play next week.”

Earlier this month Thiem delayed his expected return to the Tour at this week’s Monte Carlo Masters because he was ‘not 100% yet.’ In a blog post on his website the Austrian admitted that he had ‘a lot of work to do’ and ‘tough weeks’ ahead. Thiem hasn’t played a match since the Dubai Tennis Championships after deciding to take a break from the sport in order to reset himself.

The hope for the world No.4 is that he will be back on track and ready to play at the Madrid Open which will begin on April 30th with the ultimate goal remaining to be back to full fitness at the French Open. Thiem’s most successful Grand Slam where he has reached finals in 2018 and 2019.

“I want to be completely fit at the beginning of May and play proper tennis,” he states.
“There is something positive, though: Coach Nicolas Massu arrived in Austria yesterday, we are going to continue my program even though at the moment we have to be careful. In the meantime I have also been working on my physical fitness with sports scientist Mike Reinprecht.’
“There is no doubt, the big goal till the summer are the French Open – in Paris I must be at my best.”

So far this season Thiem has only won back-to-back matches in one out of four tournaments played. Doing so at the Australian Open where he reached the fourth round before losing to Grigor Dimitrov. Since then he has suffered second round losses in Doha and Dubai. His win-loss record for 2021 currently stands at 5-4.

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