Fearless Bianca Andreescu Stuns Williams To Win Historic US Open Title - UBITENNIS
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Fearless Bianca Andreescu Stuns Williams To Win Historic US Open Title

The tennis sensation produced a ruthless display to become the first ever Canadian woman in the Open Era to win a grand slam title.

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Bianca Andreescu has continued Serena Williams’ recent trend of heartbreaks in major finals as she roared to a 6-3, 7-5, win over the lacklustre American to clinch the US Open title.

The world No.15, who had previously never gone beyond the second round of a major tournament until this year’s New York event, showed no signs of intimidation throughout the 99-minute encounter. Despite playing in the biggest final of her career against one of the all-time greats. Andreescu hit 18 winners to 17 unforced errors, compared to Williams’ tally of 33 and 33. Overall, she won eight more points than her opponent in the final.

 

“It’s so hard to explain in words, but I’m just beyond grateful and truly blessed. I’ve worked really, really hard for this moment.” Andreescu said during the trophy ceremony.
“This year has been a dream come true and being able to play on this stage against Serena, a true legend of this sport, is amazing.”

The clash on the Arthur Ashe Stadium was one between a tour veteran and a teenage rising star. 23-time grand slam champion Williams is more than 18 years older than her rival. Making it the largest ever age gap between two grand slam finalists in the Open Era. Despite the disparity in experience, it was the 19-year-old Andreescu who dominated from the onset with a combination of her fearless play and tactic of hitting numerous body serves. The Canadian got her first breakthrough in the opening game after a Williams double fault handed her an early break. In the driving seat, Andreescu managed to maintain her stronghold. Silencing the usually animated New York crowd.

Williams continued to fight hard with glimpses of her best tennis. Best illustrated by a 10-minute service game where she saved five break points. However, she was constantly on her back footing against some sublime play coming from across the court. Unfortunately for Williams, the set ended like the first game of the match with a double fault to send Andreescu nearer to the title.

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The clinical start to the encounter by the 15th seed scrambled Williams’ mind as her error tally continued to hurt her. Within the blink of an eye, Andreescu moved to a set and 2-0 up after dismantling the former world No.1s service game yet again by breaking to love.

Eventually, Williams managed to break back, but she failed to gain any momentum. Cries of frustration started to erupt on the court as the American made some baffling shots. As she began to fall apart on the court, Andreescu stuck to her game plan and refused to be overwhelmed by the occasion.

Leading 6-2, 5-1, Andreescu looked set for a comprehensive victory. However, Williams refused to back down as she staged a remarkable resurgence. Saving a match point with a clean forehand return, she managed to turn her fortunes around by claiming four games in a row.

“I just tried to fight at that point, tried to stay out there (on court) for a little bit longer.” Said Williams. “Honestly, the fans started cheering so hard it made me play a little bit better and fight a little bit more.”

Facing a new dimension in the match, Andreescu found herself contending with a very different player compared to that at the start of the final. Still, she continued to weather the storm. 23 minutes after losing her first match point, she worked herself to another two after a Williams backhand drifted wide. Eventually, the victory was sealed after a tentative Williams serve was punished with a Andreescu forehand winner. Giving her the title as Canada’s first singles grand slam champion.

“Obviously it was expected for Serena to fight back. She’s done that so many times in the past.That’s why she is a true champion on and off the court.” Andreescu reflected.
“I just tried to block everything out. The last game wasn’t easy. She started serving well better too, the balls were flying everywhere. I’m just glad with how I managed (the situation) really.”

It is now the fourth time Williams has lost in the final of a grand slam since becoming a mother. Her previous losses were to Angelique Kerber at Wimbledon 2018, Naomi Osaka in their infamous clash at the US Open last year and Simona Halep at Wimbledon a couple of months ago. Ensuring that Margaret Court’s all-time grand slam record remains solely hers until at least 2020.

“Bianca played an unbelievable match. I’m so proud and happy for you.” The former champion stated. “There was some incredible tennis, but I wished I could have played a bit better.”

Andreescu is now eight out of eight against top 10 players on the tour this season. Her triumph at Flushing Meadows follows up on titles won at the Rogers Cup and in Indian Wells. She will rise to fifth in the world rankings on Monday in what will be her top 10 debut.

“I tried to prepare my best like I do with every other match. I try to  step onto the court and not focus on who I’m playing. I’m really proud with how I have dealt with everything.“ She concluded.

https://twitter.com/usopen/status/1170463512491114497

 

Grand Slam

US Open To Allow Full Capacity Crowds A Year After Being Held Behind Closed Doors

The announcement is the latest step in a gradual return to normality in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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The US Open will become the first Grand Slam to take place without any restrictions on the number of spectators attending since the COVID-19 crises turned into a worldwide pandemic.

 

The Associated Press has confirmed that the USTA, who are in charge of the tournament, will allow 100% fan capacity throughout the entire two weeks. Something that hasn’t happened at a major event in tennis since the 2020 Australian Open. The announcement is a dramatic contrast to last year when Flushing Meadows was held behind closed doors amid a surge of cases in the region.

Earlier this week New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said the state had reached their target of issuing 70% of the population at least one COVID-19 vaccination. He has now lifted ‘state-mandated’ restrictions across both commercial and social settings with immediate effect. However, masks will still need to be worn at large venues for the time being. According to the latest COVID-19 figures, New York reported 450 new cases last week which was the lowest-level since the pandemic began.

The development is a major boost for the USTA who suffered big financial losses last season. According to information provided in September, US Open revenue fell by an estimated 50% and the USTA expected their net operating profit to decline by roughly 80%. To put this into perspective the 2018 event generated $300M in revenue.

In 2019 a total of 737,872 fans attended the US Open over a two-week period and a further 115,355 attended during the fan week. Making it the first time the tournament has welcomed more than 850,000 people to the event.

Tickets for the 2021 tournament are set to go on sale next month with all court tickets and ground passes being available. No information on the pricing of those tickets have been released yet.

There has been a steady rise of fans allowed to attend major tournaments in the sport. At the French Open 5000 spectators were allowed to attend daily to begin with before the number increased to 13,000 later in the tournament. Meanwhile, Wimbledon will start at 50% capacity and rise to 100% for the finals.

The US Open takes place from Aug. 30 to Sept. 12 in Flushing Meadows, New York.

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Wimbledon Award Wild Cards To Former Champions Andy Murray, Venus Williams

Here is a list of which players have received passes into this year’s tournament.

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Three-time Grand Slam champion Andy Murray will make his 13th appearance in the main draw at Wimbledon after being awarded a wild card on Wednesday by The All England Club.

 

Murray, who won the men’s title in 2013 and 2016, is currently on the comeback from a groin injury which forced him to miss three months of the Tour this season. The latest setback for the Brit who has also undergone two hip surgeries in recent years in order to prolong his career. Murray is currently participating at the Cinch Championships in Queen’s where he beat Benoit Paire in his first round match on Tuesday.

“Look, I love playing tennis,” an emotional Murray said following his win over Paire.
“Obviously, competing is why you put in all the hard work.
“The last few years, I’ve not go to do that as much as I would have liked so, yeah [it’s] just great that I’m out here and able to compete again.”

Another player to receive one of the initial wild cards is Spanish rising star Carlos Alcaraz who is currently ranked 78th in the world. The 18-year-old recently reached the third round of the French Open as a qualifier and won a Challenger title on clay. Last month he broke into the ATP top 100 for the first time to become the youngest player to do so since Borna Coric in 2014.

As for the women, Venus Williams has been given entry into the main draw. At the age of 40, Williams is one of the oldest players on the WTA Tour and she has only won three out of 18 matches played since the start of 2020. She is a five-time champion at Wimbledon with her most recent triumph taking place back in 2018. It will be her 23rd main draw appearance at Wimbledon.

Regarding the British players, Jay Clarke, Liam Broady, Katie Boulter and Harriet Dart have all been awarded wild cards. So has youngster Jack Draper, who stunned Jannik Sinner at Queen’s earlier this week.

Full list of wild cards

GENTLEMEN’S SINGLES

  1. Carlos ALCARAZ (ESP)
  2. Liam BROADY (GBR)
  3. Jay CLARKE (GBR)
  4. Jack DRAPER (GBR)
  5. Andy MURRAY (GBR)
  6. To be announced
  7. To be announced
  8. To be announced

LADIES’ SINGLES

  1. Katie BOULTER (GBR)
  2. Jodie BURRAGE (GBR)
  3. Harriet DART (GBR)
  4. Francesca JONES (GBR)
  5. Samantha MURRAY SHARAN (GBR)
  6. Venus WILLIAMS (USA)
  7. Not used – Next direct acceptance
  8. Not used – Next direct acceptance

GENTLEMEN’S DOUBLES

  1. Liam BROADY (GBR) and Ryan PENISTON (GBR)
  2. Jay CLARKE (GBR) and Marius COPIL (ROU)
  3. Lloyd GLASSPOOL (GBR) and Harri HELIOVAARA (FIN)
  4. Alastair GRAY (GBR) and Aidan MCHUGH (GBR)
  5. Stuart PARKER (GBR) and James WARD (GBR)
  6. To be announced
  7. To be announced

LADIES’ DOUBLES

  1. Naiktha BAINS (GBR) and Samantha MURRAY SHARAN (GBR)
  2. Harriet DART (GBR) and Heather WATSON (GBR)
  3. Sarah Beth GREY (GBR) and Emily WEBLEY-SMITH (GBR)
  4. Tara MOORE (GBR) and Eden SILVA (GBR)
  5. To be announced
  6. To be announced
  7. To be announced

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Wimbledon Finals To Be Played In Front Of Full Capacity Crowd In UK first Since Lockdown

The grass-court Grand Slam has been granted a special exemption from the government which will allow them to welcome thousands to the tournament over a two-week period.

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The Wimbledon Championships received a major boost after being listed as a pilot event by the British Government which allows them to welcome more spectators than the current restrictions.

 

Under the agreement, The All England Club will start the tournament welcoming 50% of it’s ground capacity to the venue which is more than double what was estimated a few weeks ago. The limit will gradually increase as the tournament progresses until finals weekend when both the women’s and men’s title matches will be played in front of 15,000 fans. Making it the first outdoor sporting event in the country that will take place in front of a full capacity crowd since the country went into it’s first lockdown last year.

The announcement coincides with the British government announcing a four-week extension to their plans of ending all restrictions currently in place due to the pandemic. The delay has been triggered due to concerns related to the Indian variant and its transmission rate. However, Wimbledon has been added to the Events Research Program which is a series of pilot events being used to monitor the spead of COVID-19 at sporting and entertainment events.

“We are continuing to work closely with the Government to finalise the details including the requirements for Covid-status certification for spectators,” the All England Club said in a statement.
“We are pleased to have worked closely with the government, public health bodies, and our local authority in Merton, to confirm that, as part of this next phase of pilot events, the Championships 2021 will begin on Monday 28 June with 50% capacity across the grounds, building to full capacity crowds of 15,000 on Centre Court for the finals weekend.
“This will enable us to fulfil our aspiration of staging the best Wimbledon possible within the current circumstances, with the health and safety of all those who make Wimbledon happen – our guests, competitors, members, staff, media, officials, local residents, and partners – remaining our highest priority.”

Last year Wimbledon was cancelled for the first time in the Open Era and was the only major not to take place. However, the grass-court major had the luxury of having pandemic insurance which substantially helped cover their costs. The tournament does not have such a policy this year however.

The Wimbledon Championships will start on June 28th. Novak Djokovic and Simona Halep are the defending champions.

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