Dominic Thiem beats Jannik Sinner to claim the title in the Berlin Tempelhof Airport - UBITENNIS
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Dominic Thiem beats Jannik Sinner to claim the title in the Berlin Tempelhof Airport




Dominic Thiem won his second Berlin tournament in the hangar 6 of the Airport Tempelhof beating Jannik Sinner 6-4 6-2 on the hard-court of the Tempelhof Airport in Berlin a few days after winning the grass tournament final at the Steffi Graf Stadium. Thiem won 25 of his 28 matches during the tour suspension.


Thiem did not face any single break points in the whole match and converted three of his six break points (one in the first set and two in the second set).

Sinner saved a break point in the third game of the first set with his serve. Thiem broke serve in the seventh game in 37 minutes after a backhand unforced error from Sinner.

Thiem converted his third break point in the third game of the second set after a 21-shot rally and earned his double break in the seventh game to claim the second set 6-2.

“It was probably my best match during the coronavirus break. I was feeling every ball, so I am super happy and it was probably the best I have played in the last four months. I hope that my next tournament will be the US Open. I am still not 100 % sure if it’s going to happen, but the plan is to go there middle of August. If this is happening then the normal tour is coming back which is what we are all hoping for. I hope it was my last exhibition match for a while”, said Thiem.

Sinner beat Roberto Bautista Agut and Karen Khachanov en route to the final during a very good week.

Sevastova beat Kvitova in the women’s final

Anastasja Sevastova came back from one set down to beat Petra Kvitova 3-6 6-3 10-5 to win the women’s final at the Bett 1 Aces tournament. Kvitova lost her second consecutive final this week after losing against Elina Svitolina on grass court at the Steffi Graf Stadium, which was postponed due to rain and played on hardcourt at the Berlin Tempelhof Airport.

Sevastova earned the first break in the first game of the opening set after 32 minutes. Kvitova broke back in the fourth game to draw level to 2-2. Kvitova broke for the second time at 15 in the eighth game to win the opening set 6-3.

Sevastova got the only break of the second set in the eighth game to win the second set 6-3 The Latvian player claimed the super tie-break 10-5.

Earlier this week Sevastova beat Kiki Bertens and Elina Svitolina to reach the final.

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Roberto Bautista Agut apologizes after comparing the Australian Open bubble to prison




Roberto Bautista Agut compared the quarantine in the bubble in Melbourne ahead of the Australian Open to a jail. 


Bautista Agut criticised the 2021 Australian Open bubble. 

“It’s the same to prison, but with WIFI. These people have no idea about tennis, about practice courts. It’s a complete disaster because of the control of everything. It’not Tennis Australia, it’s the people from the government”, said Bautista Agut. 

The former world number 10 and reigning Davis Cup champion issued an apology saying that his words were taken out of context. 

“I want to apology to everyone who has been offended by the video that was posted about me recently. It is a private conversation taken of contect that has unfortunately been released to the media without my knowledge or consent”, wrote Bautista Agut on his twitter account. 

The Spanish player said that he is following the strict guidelines issued by the Australian Government. 

“Both my coach and I are following the protocols designed by the Australian Government and Tennis Australia to avoid any risk and guarantee to compete again in a safe way. These are hard times for athletes and society in general.”

Bautista Agut made his Australian Open debut in 2012 as a qualifier, when he was still ranked outside the world number 100 spot. He won his first match at Melbourne Park in 2013 against Italy’s Fabio Fognini in five sets and reached the fourth round in 2014 after a hard-fought win over Juan Martin Del Potro in just under four hours. 

Bautista Agut reached the round of 16 in 2016 and 2017 and the quarter final in 2019 after beating Greece’s Stefanos Tsitsipas in four sets. In 2020 Bautista lost to Marin Cilic in five sets in the third round. He clinched nine ATP titles and reached a career-high of world number 9. He earned his 300th win when he beat Tennys Sandgren in the US Open first round. He reached his first Grand Slam semifinal at Wimbledon in 2019.

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Veronika Kudermetova builds up to the Australian Open with confidence after her breakthrough tournament in Abu Dhabi




Veronika Kudermetova recently made a major breakthrough when she reached the final in Abu Dhabi WTA 500 tournament finishing runner-up to Aryna Sabalenka. 


In the first WTA tournament of the 2021 season Kudemertova knocked out Anett Kontaveit, Bianca Turati, Paula Badosa, world number 5 Elina Svitolina and Ukrainian 18-year-old rising star Marta Kostyuk en route to reaching her first WTA singles final after four previous semifinal defeats. Kudemertova scored her fifth career Top 5 win over Svitolina, with whom she has a 100% record, as she had already beaten her Ukrainian rival in Moscow in 2019. After Abu Dhabi the 23-year-old Russian player improved her best ranking to world number 38. 

Kudemertova has risen close to 200 ranking spots in the last two years. Many experts predict that Veronika could be a candidate for a top 10 spot in the WTA Ranking in the near future. 

“I did not any specific goals with my team for the 2021 season, but I have to admit I am a very ambitious person, so I have very high expectations from my tennis career. The final in Abu Dhabi will give me more confidence and more motivation to keep working hard and reach my potential”, said Kurdemetova.

Kudermetova is building up to the Australian Open with high hopes. 

“I am coming in with confidence and feeling good physically and mentally. If I keep up the hard work and improve my level during the next 14 days of quarantine and practice, I believe I can play good”. 

Kudermetova beat Sabalenka in the doubles final in Wuhan 2019. 

“Aryna is really good. She has won the last three tournaments she has played, so she obviously has a lot of confidence and is probably the hottest player on tour right now” 

Sabalenka and Kurdemetova are among a group of favourites for the upcoming Australian Open. 

“It’s difficult to say who are the favourites considering the difficulties of the times we are living in. A lot of different things can happen in the next 2 or 3 weeks. Many young playesr are coming up and are showing their big potential. I think we are a very nice group of players and will push each other to the top”. 

Kudermetova was born to Eduard Damirovich Kudemertova, a former Russian national ice hockey champion. She started playing tennis at the age of seven. Her younger sister Polina, who was born in 2003, is world junior number 4 player and reached the US Open Junior semifinal in 2020. 

“I started playing tennis by chance. Before I was seven, I had lived in Kazan. I was spending summer in our country house, and a friend of mine invited me to play tennis, because she got bored playing alone. Not only I had never had a tennis racket in my hand, but I had absolutely no idea of what it was about. However, the idea of playing sounded more attractive than working in my grandmother’s garden. I had lots of energy, and surprisingly, I even managed to hit the ball. I enjoyed the feeling of the game very much”, said Kudemertova. 

She was a solid player at junior level and won her first $ 50k tournament at the Kazan Summer Open in the doubles partnering Evgeniya Rodina. They beat Alexandra Artamonova and Martina Borecka in the final. She reached the quarter final at the President’s Cup in her first $100k tournament before losing to Vitalia Diatchenko. Kudermetova and Daria Kasatkina won the Fed Cup Junior title in 2013. 

However, she faced a strong competition of Belinda Bencic and Daria Kasatkina, who were also born in 1997. Bencic beat Kudermetova in Florence and at the Bonfiglio tournament in Milan in 2013. Kasatkina defeated Kudermetova at the Yeltsin Cup. 

Kudermetova reached a best junior ranking of world number 22 in 2013 at the age of 16. That year was dominated at junior level by Ana Konjuh (winner of two junior Grand Slam titles on hard court at the Australian Open and at the US Open) and Belinda Bencic (Roland Garros and Wimbledon Junior champion). Kudemertova is part of a golden generation of players born in 1997 also includes Daria Kasatkina (winner at the Roland Garros Junior tournament in 2014) and Jelena Ostapenko (Wimbledon Junior champion in 2014). 

Kudermetova looked back to the early years on the tennis court and the challenges she had to face at the start of her career. 

“My father was a professional hockey player. He played for Metallurg hockey club. My father signed a contract with TSKA Moscow and was invited to the capital. As part of his contract he asked for some benefits for me. I was enlisted to train in Tennis Center. At that time I was hardly a good player. I had no ranking, because I had not participated in any contest. It was difficult to get there without any support. Maybe I could have tried to enroll to the tennis myself, without my father asking for his daughter, but it would have taken much more effort and time. Initially i didn’t travel a lot, maybe two or three times withing six months. All the tournaments I took part in were in Russia. That’s why we had no problems with covering the travel costs. Financial problems began when I started to travel every month. Sometimes these tournaments were held abroad. My father was looking for sponsors to cover the travel costs”. 

In 2014 Kudermetova made her Fed Cup debut in the debut against Australia losing to Samantha Stosur. 

After a difficult start to the 2016 season Kudemertova reached her first final of the year in Andijan. She won two consecutive $25k titles in Imola and Astana. She enjoyed a 34-18 win-loss record in 2016 and improved her year-end ranking by a total of 190 spots, ending the year at the 210th spot in the WTA Ranking. 

“I finished playing tennis at a junior early and moved on to senior level. I did not want to waste time and my parents’ money. If I had continued playing as a junior for at least six months, I could have ranked in the top 20”.

Veronika made her Grand Slam debut at the 2017 Australian Open, where she lost in the first qualifying round. She won her first qualifying round at the French Open, but she lost her next match. 

“Besides rankings, international tournaments are a good chance to practice your skills. At the Australian Open and Wimbledon junior and senior tournaments were held together. It was really cool to play together with tennis celebrities, you are playing, improving your skills and watch them play”. 

Kudermetova scored her first top 30 win, when she beat Carla Suarez Navarro at the 2018 Porsche Grand Prix Premier Tournament in Stuttgart. She reached the final qualifying round for the first time in her career at the French Open. She then beat Anett Kontaveit in Rosmalen on grass before scoring an upset win over Belinda Bencic in the next round reaching her first WTA quarter final. She went on to reach another WTA quarter final in Gstaad, where she beat Viktoria Kuzmova before losing to Eugenie Bouchard in straight sets. 

Kudermetova started the 2019 season with a quarter final in Shenzhen after beating her compatriot Anastasya Pavlyuchenkova. She qualified for the main draw of the Australian Open for the first time in her career and lost to Sofia Kenin in the opening round. 

In May 2019 Kudermetova scored her first wins in a Grand Slam main draw at the French Open beating Caroline Wozniacki in the first round and Zarina Diyas in the second round. Kudermetova reached the second round at Wimbledon and two semifinals at the Japan Open and at the Tianjin Open. She upset Elina Svitolina in the second round of the Kremlin Cup before losing to Anastasya Pavlyuchenkova in the quarter final. Kudermetova won the doubles title at the Wuhan Open with Duan Yingyng. 

“When I moved up to seniors, I faced other challenges. I lost the support from the Russian Tennis Federation. Thanks to their support I managed to move up from 400 to to 170, and in doubles I ranked among the top 100”. 

Kudermetova looked up to Serena Williams, Roger Federer and Maria Sharapova at the start of her career. 

“Serena and Roger are the GOAT (Greatest of all all time), but I also liked Justine Henin. Federer is my favourite player among the Big 3. I tried to model on Maria Sharapova when I was growing up and I looked up to her”. 

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Rafael Nadal joins star-studded Rotterdam field




World number 2 and 20-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal will return to Rotterdam to play at the 48th edition of the ABN Amro World Tennis Tournament from 1 to 7 March 2021. 


Nadal joins a star-studded line-up which already features 2020 ATP Finals champion Danil Medvedev three-time Grand Slam champion Stan Wawrinka, 2014 US Open finalist Kei Nishikori, 2019 Next Gen ATP Finals champion and 2020 Sofia ATP 250 Tour winner Jannik Sinner. 

Nadal made his debut in Rotterdam in 2008 but he lost to Italy’s Andreas Seppi in the second round. One year later the Spanish legend lost to Andy Murray in the final. 

Nadal claimed his 13th Roland Garros title and his 20th Grand Slam trophy last year tying Roger Federer for most Grand Slam men’s singles titles. He was ranked in top 10 for record 800 consecutive weeks from 25 April 2003, including 209 total weeks as World number 1 following 160 consecutive weeks as world number 2. He earned his 1000th career win in Paris 2020 and boasts most ATP Masters 1000 match victories (389) and second most titles, including 11 in Monte-Carlo, 9 in Rome and 5 in Madrid. He joined André Agassi as the first to male players to complete career Grand Slam and win Olympic gold medals in singles in Beijing 2008 and in doubles in Rio de Janeiro 2016 alongside his compatriot Marc Lopez.   

“What applied to his debut in 2008 in the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament, still applies. Rafa is again in second place in the ATP Rankings. That shows how unique it is. Non-stop in the top 10 since April 2005. There is no one who will be close to this, or will match him for a long time to come. We had annual contact about him playing in Rotterdam, but it did not fit into the schedule. Now that the season looks different in terms of planning, he was open to coming back to Rotterdam. Of course we seized the opportunity. It would be great if we could add to our Ring of Champions next March. It’s no secret that Nadal is one of my all-time favourite players. The intensity he brings to the court is unparalled. His fighting spirit in combination with his unique technique is an example for everyone. The fact that he returns to Rotterdam after so many years makes it extra special, of course”, said Tournament Director and former Wimbledon champion Richard Krajicek. 

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