Multiple Grand Slam Winners Missing From Western And Southern Open Entry List - UBITENNIS
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Multiple Grand Slam Winners Missing From Western And Southern Open Entry List

The absence of a group of top 10 WTA players throws into doubt the likeness of them also playing in the US Open.

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Five members of the top 10 on the WTA Tour have not signed up to play at next months Western and Southern Open, according to a report published by opencourt.ca.

 

The deadline for players to register to play in the Premier event expired earlier this week and among the most notable absentees are the two most recent US Open champions. Bianca Andreescu and Naomi Osaka have not put their names down for reasons that are unknown. Andreescu has been hampered by injury for months and hasn’t played a competitive tournament since the WTA Finals last November. Meanwhile, Osaka opted not to play in any exhibitions during the Tour shutdown but is based in America.

Even more significant is that neither of those two players have yet enrolled to play in the US Open. Although the deadline for the Grand Slam isn’t until August 3rd. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Western and Southern Open have been relocated to New York in a bid to keep players in what officials describe as a ‘protective bubble.’ In recent days, assurances have also been given to players that they will be exempt from quarantine rules when travelling.

Other absentees are players who have previously expressed uncertainty over travelling to America. World No.1 Ash Barty has said she would make a decision on her season when she ‘knows all the facts’ and she needs to take into consideration her team. Simona Halep, who pulled out of next week’s Palermo Open due to ‘travelling anxiety,’ is looking increasingly likely she will stick to European clay over the summer. The same also applies to Elina Svitolina who had previously mentioned one of her potential plans includes returning to tennis in Madrid after the US Open. Finally, Angelique Kerber is yet to commit after recently rehiring former coach Torben Beltz to her team.

The absence of the top names could be a blow to the US Open, who are yet to have any of those six sign up for their event as well. Nevertheless the USTA is determined to press ahead with a series of TV deals worth millions at stake.

“The USTA will create a safe and controlled environment for players and everyone else involved in both tournaments that mitigates health risks that was approved by the State of New York and also conforms to the standards put forth by New York City and the federal government,” the USTA said in a statement.
“We constantly base our decisions regarding hosting these tournaments on our three guiding principles that include safety and health of all involved, whether hosting these events are in the best interest in the sport of tennis and whether this decision is financially viable. We are confident we remain in-line with all three guiding principles.”

The Western and Southern Open will start a week prior to the US Open on August 21st.

Top 50 players missing from Cincy Open entry list

  • Ash Barty AUS #1
  • Simona Halep ROM #2
  • Elina Svitolina UKR #5
  • Bianca Andreescu CAN #6
  • Naomi Osaka JPA #10
  • Petra Martic CRO #15
  • Angelique Kerber GER #21
  • Wang Qiang CHN #29
  • Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova RUS #30
  • Zheng Saisai CHN #34
  • Sloane Stephens USA #37
  • Julia Goerges GER #38
  • Jelena Ostapenko LTA #41
  • Polona Hercog SLO #45

List as of July 29th 2020

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Jannik Sinner continues his winning streak at the Sofia Open

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Jannik Sinner cruised past Portugal’s Nuno Borges 6-3 6-4 in 1 hour and 26 minutes to continue his winning streak at the Sofia Open, where he won two consecutive titles in 2020 and 2021. Sinner has extended his winning streak to 10-0 in Sofia.

 

Sinner converted his second break in the second game and held serve to earn a 3-0 lead. The Italian player held his next service games to close out the first set 6-3. 

Sinner went up a break in the third game to take a 3-1 lead and sealed the win on his first match point. 

“Today’s match was tough, as always at the beginning of the tournament. I served well in the important moment. I am happy. It is a special place for me. Here I won my first title. I hope to play well in the next round as well. I don’t think about it so much. I always try to improve in every match. At the end of the year we will see. Every challenge is important. I am happy for today”, said Sinner. 

Sinner set up a quarter final against Alexander Vukic, who came back from one set down to beat Fernando Verdasco 1-6 6-4 6-3. Verdasco broke three times to win the first set 6-1. 

Vukic broke serve in the ninth game to win the second set 6-4. The Australian player broke serve in the fifth and ninth game to close out the third set 6-3. 

Holger Rune came back from one set down to beat Lorenzo Sonego 6-7 (1-7) 6-4 6-3 at the Sofia Open ATP 250 Tournament in a hard-fought match reaching his sixth tour-level quarter final this season.

Rune hit 38 winners and won 85% of his first serve points against Sonego, who won his ATP Tour level in Metz last week. 

Sonego did not convert a break point in the second game of the first set. The Italian player saved a break point in the fifth game. The first set went on serve en route to the tie-break. Rune earned three mini-breaks to win the tie-break 7-1. 

Rune sealed the second set 6-4 with a break at deuce in the 10th game. The Danish player broke serve in the eighth game and closed out the win on his first match point. 

Rune is currently fourth in the ATP Race to Milan and is looking to qualify for the Intesa San Paolo Next Gen ATP Finals for the second consecutive year. The Danish player won his first ATP Tour title in Munich and reached the quarter final at Roland Garros before losing to Casper Ruud. 

Rune will face a quarter final against Ilya Ivashka. 

“I feel very good. Today was a tough match. Lorenzo won a title last week in Metz, so he had a lot of confidence. I took my chances, played well and stayed in the in the moment, so I am proud”, said Rune.  

Jan Lennard Struff cruised past Ugo Humbert 6-3 6-1 setting up a quarter final match against Lorenzo Musetti, who is seeking his first semifinal of the season. Kamil Majchrzak rallied from one set down to beat Oscar Otte 4-6 6-2 6-4 reaching his third quarter final of the season. Majchrzak will face Marc Andrea Huesler, who knocked out Pablo Carreno Busta 6-3 3-6 6-2 with three breaks of serve after 1 hour and 44 minutes.

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Lorenzo Sonego continues his winning streak with a victory over Barnabe Zapata Miralles in Sofia

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Lorenzo Sonego beat Barnabe Zapata Miralles 6-3 6-4 after 1 hour and 19 minutes to reach the second round at the Sofia Open. Sonego won 86% of his first serve points. 

 

Sonego broke serve in the second game at 30, but he missed a double break point in the third game. The Italian player dropped just three points in his next three service games to close out the first set 6-3.  

Sonego broke serve in the ninth game at love, as Zapata Miralles made a double fault. He made a double fault and a forehand error at 5-4, but he won four consecutive points to close out the second set on his first match point. 

Last week Sonego won his title in Metz without dropping a set. 

Sonego will face Danish Next Gen player Holger Rune in the second round. 

“I am really happy because today I was really aggressive on court. I played so well. I did my best thing today. I am really happy for that. Zapata is a big wall. He served really well, but I started so good today, with good variation. The key was my performance on serve, and to be aggressive on serve”, said Sonego. 

Lorenzo Musetti battled past Alexander Lazarov 6-7 (5-7) 7-6 (10-8) 6-2 after 2 hours and 42 minutes. 

The first set went on serve with no break points. Lazarov earned his mini-break at 4-2 to win the tie-break 7-5. Musetti saved two break points at 4-4. The Italian player wasted a set point at 5-4 on Lazarov’s serve and dropped his serve in the next game. Lazarov earned his chance to close out the match at 6-5, but he was broken at 30. Musetti went up a 4-1 lead in the tie-break, but Lazarov  won four consecutive points to take a 5-4 lead. Lazarov had the chance to close the match, but he dropped two points on serve.  Musetti sealed the tie-break on his fourth set point. 

Musetti earned two breaks and held his next service games to win the third set 6-2. 

Ilya Ivashka upset Grigor Dimitrov 6-3 7-6 (7-3) after 1 hour and 52 minutes to reach the quarter finals. Ivashka saved all seven break points he faced. Dimitrov saved two match points in the second set forcing the match to the tie-break. Ivashka earned two mini-breaks to take a 7-3 lead. 

Ivashka will face either Sonego or Rune in the quarter final. 

“It was a very tough match and I am very happy that I got the victory at the end. It is very hard to play against Grigor, especially at his home”, said Ivashka.  

Fernando Vedasco edged past Nikoloz Basilashvili 7-6 (7-1) 7-5 to set up a second round match against Alexander Vukic. 

Jan Lennard Struff came back from a set down to beat Dusan Lajovic 4-6 6-3 6-2. 

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Playing Clay Events After Wimbledon Was A Mistake, Says Diego Schwartzman

The former French Open semi-finalist is seeking to win his first title since March 2021 at the Tel Aviv Open this week.

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Diego Schwartzman (Roberto Dell'Olivo)

Diego Schwartzman will likely reevaluate his schedule for next year after admitting that part of his plans for this summer backfired. 

 

The world No.17 enters into the final quarter of the season with 31 wins against 22 losses on the Tour but is yet to win a title. Although he did reach back-to-back finals back in February in Argentina and Brazil. He has won two out of eight matches against top 10 opposition, defeating Stefanos Tsitsipas at the ATP Cup and Felix Auger-Aliassime in Barcelona. 

Reflecting on his performance, Schwartzman admits that his decision to return to European clay after playing at Wimbledon was a mistake. He lost his second match in Gstaad to Pablo Carreno Busta and then his first in Hamburg to Emil Ruusuvori. 

“It’s difficult to play at the same level every tournament, I’ve made a bad decision playing clay tournaments after Wimbledon, I didn’t have time to rest,” he said during his pre-tournament press conference at the Tel Aviv Open. “I paid the price and had some bad losses. But I started to feel much better in USA hard court season, lost to Stefanos Tsitsipas who reached the final in Cincinnati and to Frances Tiafoe at the US Open. Now I am feeling very good, I really love playing indoor tournaments.”

The 30-year-old has headed straight to Tel Aviv from the Laver Cup where Roger Federer played the last match of his career. Despite Schwartzman’s Team World winning the title for the first time, his only contribution to the tie saw him lose 6-1, 6-2, to Tsitsipas. 

Retirement was very much the topic of conversation during the Laver Cup with others such as Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic questioned by reporters about their plans in the sport. As for Schwartzman, he stayed coy about how much longer he would continue playing after saying in the past he might stop at the age of 33. 

“33 — is a good age to retire, isn’t it? South Americans are in different situations compared to European players. We travel too much, and sometimes we are not coming back home for 2-3 months, while Europeans can fly home every week. It’s tough,” he said. 
“As for Roger — he’s a special player, I think he is just the greatest in our sport.”

The Argentine is seeded third this week in Israel and will begin his campaign against Arthur Rinderknech who defeated qualifier Marius Copil in his opening match. 

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