Rogers Cup Thursday Preview: The Men’s & Women’s Match of the Day - UBITENNIS
Connect with us

Focus

Rogers Cup Thursday Preview: The Men’s & Women’s Match of the Day

All round of 16 singles matches will be played on an extremely busy day in Canada.

Avatar

Published

on

Felix Auger-Aliassime - Indian Wells 2019 (Luigi Serra)

Overall 49 Major singles titles are represented by the players remaining in the men’s and women’s singles draws, with 41 of them belonging to Serena Williams and Rafael Nadal.  They’ll both be considerable favorites in their matches on Thursday. The day’s most intriguing matchups involve two Canadian teenagers who are in the midst of breakout seasons, and pursuing further glory at their country’s biggest tournament.

 

Karen Khachanov (6) vs. Felix Auger Aliassime

This will be the first career meeting between the 23-year-old Russian and the 19-year-old Canadian, who is celebrating his birthday today.  This is the teenager’s first time playing in the city he was born. Felix already has solid wins this week over two veteran countrymen, Vasek Pospisil and Milos Raonic, though Raonic was forced to retire after they split the first two sets.  Khachanov yesterday notched his first win over Stan Wawrinka with some high quality play. He’ll be a step up in competition for the young Canadian. I’m surprised this was not scheduled for the evening session, which would allow Felix the opportunity of playing in front of an enthusiastic crowd in prime time.  Still, the day session folks will be exuberantly behind the birthday boy. And Felix may need all their energy to overcome a confident Khachanov, who has rediscovered his form after a slow start to 2019. Karen will be the favorite in what could be the beginning of a rivalry to play out for many years to come.

Kiki Bertens (5) vs. Bianca Andreescu

19-year-old Andreescu shocked the tennis world by winning Indian Wells back in March.  But this is only her third tournament since, as she’s given her body time to recoup from injuries.  Bianca was already pushed to three sets in both of the last two days, and yesterday had to battle back from 5-3 down in the third before winning the last four games to take out Daria Kasatkina.  She did so despite looking physically spent during that third set, so how much will she have left today? Meanwhile Bertens has only spent one hour on court this week, dropping just three games to an American qualifier yesterday.  The fifth seed should prevail here, but as we’ve learned this season, count out the ultra-competitive Andreescu at your own peril. That’s especially true on North American hard courts, where she owns 20 match wins at all levels this year.

Other notable matches on Thursday:

Serena Williams (8) vs. Ekaterina Alexandrova (Q).  Serena looked pretty impressive yesterday against Elise Mertens.  This will be her first meeting against the 24-year-old qualifier from Russia.

Rafael Nadal (1) vs. Guido Pella.  Rafa is 3-0 against Guido having never dropped a set.

Naomi Osaka (2) vs. Iga Swiatek (Q).  The 18-year-old from Poland defeated Caroline Wozniacki just last night.

Dominic Thiem (2) vs. Marin Cilic (14).  Thiem earned his first-ever Rogers Cup win yesterday against Denis Shapovalov.  Cilic has really been struggling this season, with almost as many losses as wins.

In a battle of former French Open champions, Simona Halep (4) vs. Svetlana Kuznetsova (WC).  Halep just barely survived yesterday over Jennifer Brady in a third set tiebreak, and was clearly less than 100%.

2017 champion Sascha Zverev (3) vs. Nikolaz Basilashvili (13).  Basilashvili defeated Zverev two weeks ago on clay in a third set tiebreak.

Karolina Pliskova (3) vs. Anett Kontaveit (16).  Pliskova took both previous meetings, including a hard court match earlier this year in Indian Wells.

Gael Monfils (16) vs. Hubert Hurkacz (Alt).  Hurkacz upset last year’s finalist, Stefanos Tsitsipas, in the last round.

In a match between two former Rogers Cup champions, both of whom won when the WTA tournament was staged in Toronto, Elina Svitolina (6) vs. Belinda Bencic (11).

 

ATP

Laver Cup Daily Preview: Team Europe Goes for a Fifth Straight Laver Cup

Avatar

Published

on

The lineup for Day 3 (twitter.com/lavercup)

Heading into Day 3, the 2022 Laver Cup is feeling extremely familiar.  Team Europe has an 8-4 advantage, and only needs two wins on Sunday to secure their fifth consecutive Laver Cup.  Team World needs to win three matches to pull off the upset and obtain their first. 

 

Sunday’s play gets underway in London at 12:00pm local time.  And each match on Sunday is worth three points.


Matteo Berrettini and Andy Murray (Team Europe) vs. Felix Auger-Aliassime and Jack Sock (Team World) – 12:00pm

Berrettini was victorious in both singles and doubles on Saturday, defeating Auger-Aliassime in singles, and teaming with Djokovic to overcome Sock and de Minaur in doubles.  So Matteo gained victories over both of his Sunday opponents on Saturday.  Murray lost to de Minaur in singles on Friday.  Andy and Jack are the most accomplished doubles players in this match, as Sock is pretty much Team World’s doubles specialist.  If he and Felix cannot pull of the victory on Sunday, it could be a pretty short day.


Novak Djokovic (Team Europe) vs. Felix Auger-Aliassime (Team World)

Like Berrettini, Djokovic won in singles and doubles on Saturday, comfortably dispatching of Tiafoe in singles.  While it was his first match in over two months, Novak showed no rust whatsoever.  Auger-Aliassime’s loss to Berrettini on Saturday will not help his confidence against the 21-time Major champion.

Novak and Felix have only played once before, and that occurred four months ago in Rome on clay.  It was a pretty tight affair, but Djokovic prevailed 7-5, 7-6(1).  And there’s not much evidence to support a different outcome on Sunday.  Novak is surely eager to re-assert his authority after missing so much of this season due to his vaccination status.


Stefanos Tsitsipas (Team Europe) vs. Frances Tiafoe (Team World) – If Necessary

Tsitsipas easily beat Diego Schwartzman on Friday, dropping just three games.  He is 3-2 against Tiafoe, and 3-1 on hard courts.  However, Frances claimed their most recent encounter, last fall in Vienna, which was also on an indoor hard court.


Casper Ruud (Team Europe) vs. Taylor Fritz (Team World) – If Necessary

Ruud defeated Sock on Friday, while Fritz defeated Norrie on Saturday.  If this match takes place, it will be their first career meeting.


The full Laver Cup schedule is here.

Continue Reading

Focus

Roger Federer Claims Happiness Over Tennis Retirement In Emotional Last Match

It was an emotional evening in London as Roger Federer said goodbye to tennis.

Avatar

Published

on

Roger Federer (@LaverCup - Twitter)

Roger Federer has said that his retirement from tennis was full of joy not sadness after an emotional occasion at the Laver Cup.

 

The career of one of the greatest tennis players of all time is over after 20-time Grand Slam champion Roger Federer played his last match of his career at the O2 Arena in London.

Federer teamed up with Rafael Nadal to take on Frances Tiafoe and Jack Sock with the American pairing claiming victory 4-6 7-6(2) 11-9 to level the tie for Team World at 2-2.

However celebration was limited as the whole venue celebrated, cried and soaked up the emotion that Roger Federer’s career was over.

There were tears from Federer, his family as well as rivals Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic as the end of an era was upon Tennis.

Even a performance from Ellie Goulding saw the Arena’s emotion get stronger as the Swiss maestro said goodbye to a sport he has played since he was a kid.

However despite the tears Federer claimed after the match that it was a day of celebration not sadness as he closed a big chapter of his life, “It’s been a wonderful day. I’m happy, not sad. It feels great to be here. I’m happy I made it through,” Federer told the BBC website.

“It’s been the perfect journey. I’d do it all again. Everyone’s here, the boys and girls. My wife has been so supportive. She could have stopped me a long, long time ago but she didn’t.

“Being with the guys and having family and friends, I didn’t feel the stress so much even if I felt something would go during the match. I am so glad I made it through and the match was great. I couldn’t be happier.”

After 1,750 matches in his career, Federer now faces the prospect of leaving the sport he has know for over 20 years as a professional tennis player.

But Federer gave the biggest hint yet that he wants to continue to be apart of the sport for the future.

Speaking to the press Federer claimed that he wants to travel around the world to say thanks to those who didn’t have a chance on Friday evening, “Hopefully we’ll see each other again on a different type of tennis court, somewhere around the world,” Federer was quoted as saying by the BBC website.

“I think the message from me was just making sure I relay my passion for the sport to the fans. I have no plans whatsoever, where, how, when. All I know, I would love to go and play places I have never played before or go say thank you for years to come to all the people that have been so supportive of me.

“The hard part about the Laver Cup was that tickets were already sold out. The people who maybe would have also loved to be here couldn’t make it. Maybe there is another way down the stretch we can party all together.”

An incredible career was celebrated, rejoiced and soaked in by the whole of Tennis and now Federer gets to reflect on a once in a lifetime career.

Continue Reading

ATP

Laver Cup Daily Preview: Novak Djokovic to Play Singles and Doubles on Saturday

Avatar

Published

on

The lineup for Day 2 (twitter.com/lavercup)

In the wake of Roger Federer’s incredibly emotional retirement on Day 1, the focus of this event shifts to the rest of the competitors on Day 2.  And for the first time in the five-year history of the Laver Cup, Team World goes into Day 2 without a deficit.  With both Federer and Rafael Nadal replaced by alternates for Day 2 and Day 3, is this Team World’s opportunity to capture their first Laver Cup? 

 

Each day, this preview will look at all four scheduled matches, while taking an extended look at the most notable match of the day.  Saturday’s day session gets underway in London at 1:00pm local time, and the night session at 7:00pm.  And each match on Saturday is worth two points.


Matteo Berrettini (Team Europe) vs. Felix Auger-Aliassime (Team World) – 1:00pm

These two good friends have played four times, with Berrettini winning on three of those occasions.  Matteo’s wins came three years ago in the final of Stuttgart on grass, in the quarterfinals of last year’s Wimbledon, and a year ago in this event.  Auger-Aliassime’s only win occurred last summer in Cincinnati.  Matteo is coming off a quarterfinal run in New York, as well as three victories last week in Davis Cup.  Felix was upset in the second round of the US Open by Jack Draper, and went 2-1 in Davis Cup.


Cameron Norrie (Team Europe) vs. Taylor Fritz (Team World) – Second in the Day Session

Norrie was also an alternate in last year’s Laver Cup, but did not play.  Fritz was a part of Team World in 2019, when he went 1-1 in singles, defeating Dominic Thiem during Sunday’s play in a must-win match to keep his team alive.  Cam is now 45-22 on the year, while Fritz is 36-17.  Both men achieved their best-ever Major performances two months ago at Wimbledon.  They played each other just last week in Davis Cup, with Norrie prevailing after three tight sets.  Overall they have split 10 previous meetings.


Novak Djokovic (Team Europe) vs. Frances Tiafoe (Team World) – 7:00pm

Is Tiafoe ready to upset another member of “The Big Three” on Saturday?  He earned the biggest win of his career by taking out Rafael Nadal at the US Open, and defeated Nadal and Federer in doubles on Day 1 alongside Jack Sock.  Meanwhile, this will be the first match for Djokovic in over two months, since he won the Wimbledon final over Nick Kyrgios.  The unvaccinated Novak was unable to travel to North America for the hard court summer season.

Djokovic has only played seven tournaments this year, amassing a record of 23-5.  Tiafoe is 26-19, and is coming off his exciting semifinal run in New York.  Their only previous matchup was at the 2021 Australian Open, when Novak defeated Frances in four sets.  Frances is certainly the much more match-tough player on this day.  But despite his recent inactivity, Djokovic should still be considered the favorite.


Matteo Berrettini and Novak Djokovic (Team Europe) vs. Alex de Minaur and Jack Sock (Team World) – Second in the Night Session

Novak will have only a few minutes of rest ahead of this doubles match, so the length of his match with Tiafoe could impact the result here.  This will be Novak’s first time playing doubles since last year’s Davis Cup finals.  Berrettini played three doubles matches this past January at the ATP Cup, going 1-2.  De Minaur overcame Andy Murray in singles on Friday in what was a grueling contest, while Sock was defeated in singles and victorious in doubles.


The full Laver Cup schedule is here.

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Trending