Tennis Australia To Launch Fundraisers For Fire Victims As Players Dismiss Air Quality Concerns - UBITENNIS
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Tennis Australia To Launch Fundraisers For Fire Victims As Players Dismiss Air Quality Concerns

The tennis tour is set to get underway in a country currently experiencing devastating bushfires that have forced thousands to flee their homes.

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The Rod Laver Arena (source: sportinglife.com)

The head of Tennis Australia has confirmed that a series of fundraising events will take place during the ATP Cup and Australian Open to help those affected by bushfires in the country.

 

CEO Craig Tiley has said details will be released in the coming days about what will be taking place in the coming weeks. The motion comes on the same day the Premier of New South Wales declared a week-long state of emergency due to the threat posed. Since September, 18 people have been killed and more than 1200 homes have been destroyed across the region, as well as Victoria.

“For weeks we’ve been watching the devastation caused by bushfires across Australia and the people affected are constantly in our thoughts,” Tiley said in a statement.
“We want to help these communities in a meaningful way and will announce a number of fundraising and support initiatives that will be rolled out across the ATP Cup, Australian Open and our other events over the coming weeks.”

The intuitive have already been backed by Nick Kyrgios, who called for a charity exhibition to take place the day before Tiley’s announcement. In a Twitter post, the world No.30 tweeted directly to Tennis Australia and urged them to help raise money.

Tennis Australia, obviously, has been pretty proactive about it,” The AFP quoted Kyrgios as saying on Thursday.
“I’m sure something will happen. I’m sure all of us will be involved in some way,” he added

There are concerns about how the haze from the fire will affect players during the Australian swing of the tour, which will officially start tomorrow with the ATP Cup. On New Year’s Day the country’s capital of Canberra recorded its worst air quality since ratings began and those in the city were advised against doing any physical activity.

Across tournaments in the country, officials will be monitoring the air quality but they are not expected to be affected. In Sydney at the ATP Cup, British Team captain Tim Henman told reporters that he doesn’t expect there to be a problem.

“In the context of what this country is going through with the bushfires and for us having to deal with perhaps slightly poor air quality, I think right there is the perspective,” said Henman. “I don’t envisage it being a problem at all.”

Grigor Dimitrov, who will also be playing in Sydney, also played down the situation earlier this week. Saying that the situation is out of his hands.

“If it’s not healthy, it’s not healthy,” he said. “It’s the passion that drives us through moments like that.”

World No.11 David Goffin mirrored Dimitrov by describing the conditions as ‘okay.’

“I think we are in a safe area for smoke and the air is okay for us,” said the Belgian.
“We didn’t feel it that much for the moment, the quality of the air. I think it should be okay for the matches.”

The temperature in New South Wales is expected to exceed 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit) this weekend.

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Adrian Mannarino sets up quarter final match against Radu Albot at the Singapore Open

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Top seed Adrian Mannarino beat Roberto Marcora 6-3 7-5 to advance to the quarter finals at the Singapore Tennis Open. 

 

Mannarino converted his second break point at deuce in the fifth game of the opening set after six deuces to take a 3-2 lead, as Marcora hit his forehand into the net. The Frenchman earned three set points in the ninth game. Marcora saved the first two chances, but Mannarino sealed the first set on his third chance after 50 minutes. 

Marcora went down 0-40 in the second game of the second set, but he saved all three break points to hold serve at deuce. Mannarino held his serve in the next games and earned two match points on return in the 12th game. He sealed the win, as Marcora sent his backhand into the net. 

“At this stage there is no easy match. I never played against Marcora before, but I knew he had a couple of good games before. In the second set, he got used to the pace and was winning points in the big moments and it looked like it could go either way. I am pretty happy that I managed to keep my focus and win the second set”, said Mannarino. 

Mannarino set up a quarter final against Moldova’s Radu Albot, who fended off three match points to beat Yannick Hanfmann after 2 hours and 42 minutes. Albot fended off match points at 4-5 15-40 and in the second set and at 6-7 in the tie-break. 

Australia’s Matthew Ebden cruised past his compatriot John Millman 6-4 6-1 in 72 minutes. Soonwoo Kwon won 31 of his 38 first service points to beat Yasutaka Uchiyama 6-3 6-4 setting up a quarter final against Marin Cilic. Soonwoo Kwon claimed his third ATP Challenger Tour title in Biella beating Italian Next Gen star Lorenzo Musetti.

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Benoit Paire beats Nicholas Jerry to move into the quarter final at the Cirdoba Open

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Benoit Paire claimed a 6-2 6-4 win over Nicholas Jarry after 1 hour and 17 minutes to advance to the quarter finals at the Cordoba Open. Paire has improved his head-to-head record against Jarry to 4-0. 

 

The Frenchman fended off the eight break points he faced and broke twice in the third and fifth games and once in the second set. 

“I am really happy because I didn’t make too many double faults. I saw I was number one at the Australian Open with only one match and 23 double faults, so I am really happy to save it. Even when I was under pressure in the second set, I tried to push a little bit more. I am really happy about how I saved my break points in the second set. He made some mistakes on a few, but I was happy to fight. I did not say anything”,said Paire. 

Paire set up a quarter final against Federico Coria, the younger brother of former world number 3 Guillerrmo Coria. 

Federico Coria came back from one set down to beat Francesco Cerundolo from Argentina, who won three ATP Challenger titles in 2020. Coria reached the quarter final at Rio Open and qualified for his first Masters 1000 main draw in Rome. Slovakia’s Jozef Kovalik rallied from one set down to beat Chilean qualifier Marcelo Tomas Vera 4-6 6-2 6-3 after 2 hours and 12 minutes setting up a quarter final match against Argentina’s Facundo Bagnis, who beat his compatriot Federico Delbonis 6-4 7-5. 

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Iga Swiatek reaches her first WTA Tour semifinal since her Roland Garros triumph

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Iga Swiatek has advanced to her first semifinal since her Roland Garros title last October, when Danielle Collins was forced to retire as she was trailing 2-6 0-3 in the second set. 

 

The 19-year-old Polish player fired 17 aces and and won all 10 points on Collins’ second serve. She held three hard fought service games at deuce at 2-0 and 5-2 in the first set and 1-0 in the second set. 

Swiatek earned an early break to open up a 3-0 lead. Collins broke back in the fifth game for 2-3, but Swiatek broke twice in the sixth and eighth games of the first set and once in the second game of the second set to build up a 6-2 3-0 lead, before Collins was forced to retire following a medical time-out. 

Swiatek set up a semifinal clash against Jill Teichmann, who battled past Anastasjia Sevastova 6-4 6-7 (8-10) 7-5 after 2  hours and 57 minutes. Sevastova saved five match points in the tie-break of the second set. Teichmann faced two match points, as she was serving at 4-5 in the third set. 

Sixteen year-old qualifier Coco Gauff came back from 2-6 2-4 down to beat Shelby Rogers 2-6 6-4 6-4 after 1 hour and 50 minutes. 

Rogers broke twice in a row in the fifth and seventh games to win the first set 6-2 and earned two of the three breaks at the start of the start of the second set to take a 2-1 lead. Gauff rallied from 2-4 down by winning four consecutive games with two consecutive breaks to take a 6-4 lead. The third set started with a trade of breaks. Rogers broke at love in the fifth game to take a 4-2 lead. Gauff reeled off four games with two consecutive breaks to close out the third set 6-4. The 16-year-old US player won 14 of her 38 WTA main draw and qualifying matches in three sets and came back from one set down in 10 matches.

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