This weekend will be as much about learning from other players as well as defeating them for Greece’s Stefanos Tsitsipas in the Laver Cup.
The Australian Open semi-finalist will play in the team tournament for the first time this weekend. Named after tennis great Rod Laver, the three-day competition features Team Europe taking on the rest of the world. Similar to that of the Ryder Cup. This year is the third edition of the event, which has a place on the ATP calendar.
“It’s an honour to join such important players in our era.” Tsitsipas said during a press conference on Thursday. “Being part of this unique celebration to celebrate tennis, celebrate the different continents – rest of the world against team Europe. Getting the opportunity to face each other and prove to one and another who’s better.”
Europe, who are yet to lose the event, heads into Geneva as the overwhelming favourites. All seven members of the team are currently ranked in the world’s top 20. Their line-up includes co-founder Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Alexander Zverev. On the other hand, John Isner is the only top 20 player representing the other team.
Tsitsipas is hoping to make his mark in the event. The world No.7 currently has three ATP titles under his belt and has won 41 out of 60 matches played so far this season. Tsitsipas is one of six players playing the Laver Cup for the first time this year.
“What I am aiming for this week is getting experience and learning from you guys (team Europe).” He said. “This event is very important and I think there is plenty of good tennis to be played. People expect a good show and we are here to give it to them.”
The 21-year-old will feature in one of the three singles matches set to take place on Friday. Tsitsipas will play Taylor Fritz in what will be their first meeting at an ATP sanctioned event.
Elsewhere, it is still unclear as to if Nadal and Federer will once again pair up to play in the doubles. Something they did in the inaugural tie back in 2017. Despite Europe’s dominance, that was the only time they won a doubles match to date. Their current win-loss record stands at 1-5.
“It’s a good possibility. We have a lot of players here.” Team captain Bjorn Borg commented about the chances.
“We are talking about who is going to play the doubles. Doubles will be very important every day (of the time), especially to win those points.”
Federer will be in doubles action on Friday, but alongside Alexander Zverev. The duo is set to take on Denis Shapovalov and Jack Sock.
Laver Cup day 1 schedule
Match 1: Dominic Thiem vs Denis Shapovalov
Match 2: Fabio Fognini vs Jack Sock
Match 3: Stefanos Tsitsipas vs Taylor Fritz
Match 4: Roger Federer & Alexander Zverev vs Denis Shapovalov & Jack Sock
Monte Carlo Breakthrough Leaves Andrey Rublev With Mixed Emotions
The world No.8 takes confidence from his latest run but admits it is ‘impossible’ to play at his very top level every week on the Tour.
After achieving a career milestone at the Monte Carlo Masters, Andrey Rublev was sent crashing down to earth on Sunday.
The Russian tennis star broke new territory at the tournament by reaching his first ever Masters 1000 final at the age of 23. However, he was denied the title by Stefanos Tsitsipas who produced a clinical performance to seal victory in just 71 minutes. Ending Rublev’s run of winning seven finals in a row.
“I feel happy with the week, and I feel super sad with the final, that I couldn’t show my game,” he told reporters on Sunday.
“Of course, I’m happy with the week because I beat so many great players and I beat one of the best players in history. It’s a special week.”
Earlier in the tournament Rublev stunned the draw when he upset Rafael Nadal in three sets en route to the semi-finals. Making it the fourth time in his career he has scored a win over a player ranked No.3 in the world. He is also the first player in history to come back from a set down to defeat Nadal at the tournament.
Besides the king of clay, Rublev also dismissed Roberto Bautista Agut and Casper Ruud. He has now won 24 matches on the ATP Tour this season which is more than anybody else. However, he is reluctant to link all of his match play with his latest performance.
“I feel tired after all the matches that I play, exhausted. But this is not excuse. He was just better than me, and that’s it,” he stated.
“Not always everything goes your way. It happened today. I was completely exhausted. Stefanos, he showed great game. He was just better than me, and that’s it.”
Despite his recent success, Rublev is eager to not get too far ahead of himself heading into the French Open. A Grand Slam where he has only played in the main draw twice before, including last year where he reached the quarter-finals.
“I would like to play really good in Madrid and I would like to play really good in Rome. I would like to play all of the weeks good. But it’s impossible,” he explains.
“Some of the weeks for sure will be better, some will be worse and some will be amazing.’
“For the moment I’m playing really consistent. I’m really happy I’m playing my best season so far. We’ll see what’s going to happen.”
Rublev is set to return to action next week at the Barcelona Open where he will be the third seed.
Former Australian Open Semi-Finalist Kyle Edmund Undergoes Surgery
It has been reported that the world No.69 may not be able to return to the Tour for ‘several more months.’
British world No.69 Kyle Edmund is set to be sidelined from the Tour for some time after having surgery to treat a long-standing problem in Switzerland.
The former British No.1 has confirmed he had a ‘small procedure’ on his knee after being hampered with issues in the area ever since 2018 when a scan revealed that he had fluid behind his left knee. Details of the surgery have not been disclosed by the person who conducted the operation was Dr Roland Biedert, according to BBC Sport. A specialist Orthopaedic surgeon who has also operated on Roger Federer, Stan Wawrinka and Juan Martin del Potro.
“I had a small procedure on my knee. I’m currently rehabbing. The recovery is going well and I hope to be back on court as soon as possible.” Edmund said.
Currently ranked 69th in the world, Edmund hasn’t played a competitive match since losing in the first round of qualifying at the Vienna Open last October due to his knee. 2020 saw mixed fortunes for the 26-year-old. After winning the New York Open during February of that year, he lost seven out of 10 matches played during the rest of the season. Including five defeats in a row.
No return date has been outlined by Edmund or his team following the surgery. However, British media have reported that he may be out for ‘several more months.’ Casting doubts over his chances of being ready in time for Wimbledon which starts on June 28th. He hasn’t been absent from a Wimbledon main draw since 2012.
Edmund has been ranked as high as 14th in the world with his best Grand Slam run being to the semi-finals of the 2018 Australian Open. Overall, he has won two ATP titles and has earned more than $5.7 in prize money.
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.
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.
Filip Krajinovic edges Stefano Travaglia to reach the second round at the Serbian Open in Belgrade
Kei Nishikori survives scare to beat Guido Pella at the Barcelona Open
Stefanos Tsitsipas follows in the footsteps of his mother Julia Salnikova in Monte-Carlo
Petra Kvitova starts her title defence against Jennifer Brady at the Porsche Open in Stuttgart
What Stefanos Tsitsipas’ Monte Carlo Win Tells Us About The Upcoming Clay Season
Model Claims She Was Offered 60,000 Euros To Set Up Novak Djokovic
Naomi Osaka And The (Other) Surfaces
Updated Entry Lists For Marbella, Cagliari
Furious Vasek Pospisil Blames Miami Open Meltdown On Heated Meeting With ATP
Novak Djokovic Only Loses Matches When He Allows His Opponents To Beat Him, Claims Father
Steve Flink: “Jannik Sinner Will Be a Top 10 Player by the US Open”
(VIDEO) Miami Open Final Preview: Jannik Sinner Is The Favourite But Don’t Underestimate Hurkacz
Steve Flink: “Naomi Osaka Will Win At Least A Dozen Slams”
Steve Flink: “Djokovic and Nadal will end up with more Slams than Federer”
Steve Flink: “Why would Djokovic fake an injury when he’s two sets up?”
Hot Topics1 day ago
Roger Federer To Skip Two Masters Events But Still Plans To Play French Open
ATP2 days ago
Former Australian Open Semi-Finalist Kyle Edmund Undergoes Surgery
Latest news1 day ago
Italian girls Vittoria and Carola nominated for Laureus Award
Hot Topics1 day ago
Stefanos Tsitsipas Roars To Maiden Masters Title In Monte Carlo
Latest news2 days ago
Elisabetta Cocciaretto secures Italy the decisive 3-1 win against Romania in Billie Jean King Cup Play-off
Focus2 days ago
Monte-Carlo Masters Sunday Preview: Stefanos Tsitsipas and Andrey Rublev Battle for their First Masters Title
Latest news2 days ago
Stefanos Tsitsipas moves into his first final in Monte-Carlo
Focus3 days ago
Ons Jabeur Seeks Revenge On Kovinic In Charleston Semis