Former McEnroe Mentor Blasts Nicolas Massu’s Collaboration With Thiem - UBITENNIS
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Former McEnroe Mentor Blasts Nicolas Massu’s Collaboration With Thiem

Larry Stefanki has also slammed current players Grigor Dimitrov and Eugenie Bouchard.



Nicolas Massu all'angolo di Dominic Thiem - Indian Wells 2019 (foto @Sport Vision, Chryslène Caillaud)

The man responsible for overseeing two players rise to world No.1 during the late 1990s has launched an attack on Dominic Thiem’s new coach.


Larry Stefanki, who has worked alongside a series of top players on the men’s tour, has said that Nicolas Massu is a ‘cheerleader’ and does not class him as a coach. Massu joined Thiem’s team earlier this year during the North American hard court swing. During their time together, the Austrian has won his first Masters 1000 title in Indian Wells, as well as the Barcelona Open.

“The coach is not just a good cheerleader, but he sees the basics of the game, the movement of the legs, the physical theme, what is needed to get to the top. I do not call Nicolas Massu a coach.” Stefani reportedly said earlier this week.

Continuing with his criticism, the American said that Massu should not receive any recognition if Thiem tops the world rankings. The 25-year-old is currently at a ranking best of fourth in the world. So far in his career, Thiem has won 13 ATP titles and reached his first grand slam final at the French Open last year.

“Maybe Dominic is going to be the next number one and I think he will be … but do not say it was because of the coach because he does not have that experience,” he stated.

Stefanki guided both Marcelo Rios and Yevgeny Kafelnikov to the world No.1 place on the men’s tour. His resume also includes stints working with John McEnroe, Tim Henman, Andy Roddick and Fernando Gonzalez.

Besides attacking Massu’s coaching abilities, he has also criticised his career as a player. The Chilean is a former top 10 player best known for winning a gold medal at the 2004 Olympic Games. He is also a former French Open semi-finalist and won six ATP trophies before retiring in 2013.

“If he looks at his history, he indicates that he could have been a much better player if he had learned to hit the backhand well.”

Dimitrov, Bouchard also slammed

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Massu wasn’t the only person to fall victim to unflattering comments from the 61-year-old. He has also accused Grigor Dimitrov and Eugenie Bouchard of both caring more about their appearance than playing tennis. Both are former top 10 players, but neither have won a grand slam. Dimitrov’s biggest achievement yet was winning the 2017 ATP Finals. Meanwhile, Bouchard was a Wimbledon finalist back in 2014.

“Grigor Dimitrov wanted to train with me, but I did not see him with the willingness to work that was required. He was more concerned to look like Federer. Much worse was the case of Eugenie Bouchard, who preferred the photo sessions to trainING. Number 5 in the world, then, a player can not prefer to pose in a bikini to hit the ball, you’re a tennis player or a model, you can not do both.” He said.

When asked to compare McEnroe with Rios, Stefanki ranks his fellow American as the better player of the two. They were childhood friends before Stefanki became McEnroe’s coach on the tour.

“Both have an incredible talent, but I put McEnroe over Rios for the number of tournaments he won and the time he remained as number one. McEnroe played with admirable ease, like Rios, but he stayed in the elite for much longer, McEnroe was a special guy, but he loved tennis, Rios was more unpredictable, although he was a very intelligent guy,” he concluded.

Stefanki achieved a ranking high of 35th on the ATP Tour in 1985.

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Nicolas Jarry Breaks New Ground To Win The Swedish Open

The 23-year-old has become the latest player to win their first ATP title in 2019.



Nicolas Jarry (@FOXSport_Chile - Twitter)

Chilean fifth seed Nicolas Jarry has won his first ATP title at the Swedish Open after prevailing in straight sets on Sunday.


The world No.64 held his nerve to edge his way past Argentina’s Juan Inacio Londero 7-6(3), 6-4. Playing in only his third ATP final, Jarry dropped serve once as he blasted 10 aces and won 76% of the points behind his first serve. Becoming the first person his country to win the tournament since Luis Ayala back in 1960.

“I’m very happy to be able to have this (the title). I know it is not very easy to get the first one in anything that you do. I’m really happy.” Jarry said during the trophy presentation.
“I want to say thank you to my team. I have a big team back home and we are very united. This is for all of them and all of my family who has been there since I was born.”

Jarry achieved his career milestone without dropping a set during the entire tournament. Earlier in the week he also scored wins over Jeremy Chardy and Frederico Delbonis. Londero was the only seeded player he faced in Sweden this year. Overall, he was broken eight times in six matches played.

The 23-year-old isn’t the first member of his family to win a title on the men’s tour. His grandfather is Jaime Fillol, who is a former top 20 player that reached the quarter-finals of the 1975 US Open. During his career, Fillol claimed eight trophies and was the former president of the ATP.

“He is one of the best Chilean tennis players. He taught me the sport since I was little,” Jarry told earlier this week. “He took me to great tournaments. I remember Wimbledon when I was 12 and I remember going to the US Open a couple of times. There used to be an ATP [tournament] in Santiago, so I was always involved in the tennis.”

The new Swedish Open champion is the second player from Chile to win a title in 2019. Christian Garin claimed his maiden title back in April at the US Men’s Clay Court Championships in Houston. He then went on to win the Munich Open, which is also a clay-court event.

Jarry exits Sweden with 250 ranking points and €90,390 in prize money earnings. He will next travel to Germany to play in the Hamburg Open.

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REPORT: Roger Federer Set To Play South American Exhibition Tour

Details about what the Swiss maestro plans to do during the off-season later this year is emerging.



20-time grand slam champion Roger Federer will play in South America during November as part of an exhibition tour, according to various sources.


The world No.3 is reportedly set to play a tennis match at the Plaza de Toros México in Mexico City. The venue is the largest bullring in the world with a capacity of approximately 42,000 people. Excelsior, which is a daily newspaper in the country, has reported that the match will take place on November 23rd. It is not yet known who Federer will be playing. The report, which cites a source linked to Mexican media conglomerate Grupo Imagen, has also been reported by Argentine journalist Sebastian Torok.

Federer is also set to play in Chile prior to Mexico as part of the tour. A report by 24 Horas, which is linked to the national broadcaster of the country, claims that match will take place on November 20th at the Movistar Arena. A building with a mixed history in the world of tennis. Back in 2000, Chile was stripped of hosting Davis Cup ties for two years after members of the crowd threw fruit, coins and plastic chairs at the Argentinian camp during a tie that was played at the venue.

Other countries rumoured also to be part of the tour could be Argentina and Colombia. However, the media in those countries have been less confident about stating whether or not he will be visiting.

Federer has won 102 ATP titles so far in his career, however, none of those have ever occurred in South America. It is rare that he plays tournaments in that region due to his scheduling commitments. Since making his professional debut back in 1996, he has never played a tournament in Chile, Argentina, Colombia or Mexico.

There is yet to be any official comment from either Federer or his management team about the November Tour. Should it happen, it will take place shortly after the conclusion of the ATP Finals.


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Serena Williams Named Most Stylish Athlete Of 2019 As She Brushes Off Critics

The 37-year-old says she ‘doesn’t care’ about what people think about what she wears.



23-time grand slam champion Serena Williams has been awarded with another accolade in her record-breaking career.


The 37-year-old has come top in this year’s Most Fashionable list by Sports Illustrated in partnership with the Council of Fashion Designers In America. The honour recognizes athletes who have stood out from the crowd with what they wear. Those who make the shortlist are selected by a panel of stylists, fashion editors and executives and other influencers across the sports and fashion industries.

“My whole career has been really about tennis and fashion. I always try to make a statement when I walk out on the court—to be bold and to be unique and to kind of transcend. I always try to send the message of just being confident and being fierce.” Williams told Sports Illustrated.

Williams has made headlines on the court for the outfits she wears. After wearing a catsuit at last year’s French Open, she opted for a more straightforward design in this year’s tournament. Wearing a zebra-striped outfit decorated with the words ‘mother, champion, queen, goddess’ in French. It was designed by Virgil Abloh, who was named in Time’s 100 most influential people in the world back in 2018. At Wimbledon, the Nike tick on her all-white clothing was made up of 34 Swarovski ® crystals to mark the last time she won the title at the age of 34.

The fashion sense of the American wasn’t a hit with everybody. Her catsuit triggered criticism from the head of the French Tennis Federation. Bernard Giudicelli told France’s Tennis Magazine in 2017 ‘I believe we have sometimes gone too far. Serena’s outfit this year, for example, would no longer be accepted. You have to respect the game and the place.’ Williams later played down those comments.

“People always have things to say when you’re wearing fashion. It could be good things. It could be bad things. I don’t care what people say. I’m like just so past it—you could say whatever you want to say.” She said.
“Honestly, you’re allowed to have your opinion. My life is far too complicated to worry about people that want to say mean things. I have a daughter, I have a family, I have a career. I have too much to worry about.”

Williams recently finished runner-up at Wimbledon after losing to Simona Halep in the final. She is set to play at both the Rogers Cup in Canada and Cincinnati Open before the next grand slam tournament.

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