Grigor Dimitrov, Marin Cilic and Jannik Sinner reach the second round in Rome - UBITENNIS
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Grigor Dimitrov, Marin Cilic and Jannik Sinner reach the second round in Rome

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Grigor Dimitrov edged this year’s Rio de Janeiro’s finalist Gianluca Mager 7-5 6-1 in 74 minutes at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in the Foro Italico in Rome. Dimitrov won seven consecutive games from 5-5 in the first set to score his 10th win of the season. 

 

Both players traded breaks in the fourth and fifth games of the opening set. Dimitrov earned his second break in the 12th game to win the first set 7-5. The Bulgarian player went up a double break in the second and fourth games to win the second set 6-1. 

Dimitrov, who reached the semifinal in Rome in 2014, set up a second round match against either Yoshito Nishioka or Serbia’s Miomir Kecmanovic. 

Former Rome semifinalist Marin Cilic came back from one set down to beat Alexander Bublik 6-7 (4-7) 6-2 6-4 after 2 hours and 14 minutes securing a spot in the second round. 

Cilic was not able to convert a set point on Bublik’s serve at 4-5 30-40 and fended off four break points in his next service game. Bublik won the final three points from 4-4 to win the tie-break 7-4. Cilic broke twice in the first and the seventh games to win the second set 6-2 and once in the third game of the decider to seal the win setting up a second round match against David Goffin. 

Kei Nishikori beat Albert Ramos Vinolas 6-4 7-6 (7-3) to score his first win since the 2019 US Open. The Japanese star earned his only break of the match in the 10th game to win the opening set 6-4. Ramos Vinolas saved a total of nine break points in the second set, which came down to tie-break with no breaks. Nishikori converted his sixth match point to seal the win after 2 hours and four minutes. Nishikori saved two break points he faced and converted one of the ten break points he faced. Nishikori will face either three-time Grand Slam champion Stan Wawrinka or Italian qualifier and 2019 Australian Open Junior champion Lorenzo Musetti. 

Last year’s Next Gen ATP champion Jannik Sinner eased past Benoit Paire 6-2 6-1 with two breaks in each set setting up a second round match against reigning ATP Finals champion Stefanos Tsitsipas. 

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Top Seed Tennys Sandgren Defaulted From Match Two Games In At Challenger Event

The tennis player was on court for less than 20 minutes before the incident happened.

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Tennys Sandgren’s appearance at the Atlantic Tire Championships Challenger event in Cary was a very brief one after he was disqualified from his first round match for hitting a lines official with a ball.

 

The world No.103 was taking on Christopher Eubanks in the first round on Tuesday and got off to a promising start by breaking in the first game before working his way to a 40-30 lead in the second. However, Sandgren then landed himself in hot water after hitting a tennis ball which struck one of the court officials. At the time the American was frustrated after hitting a forehand error.

The bizarre incident wasn’t caught on camera by the tournament livestream but Sandgren gave his version of events shortly after. He said a ball thrown to him by a ball kid hit him in the genitals and after that he slapped a wayward ball towards the fence. However, that wayward ball ended up hitting the ‘tushy’ of a court official.

https://twitter.com/TennysSandgren/status/1437933892456140809

Immediately after the incident, the tournament supervisor was called to the court by the umpire. Following a brief discussion on the court, Sandgren was then disqualified from the match for an action which he later took full responsibility for.

“Just to be clear, this was all totally my fault,” he wrote on Twitter.

It is not the first time a player has been disqualified for hitting a ball which then struck an official. The most famous incident took place at last year’s US Open when Novak Djokovic was disqualified from his fourth round match after hitting a ball which hit the lineswoman in the throat. In another incident, Denis Shapovalov was disqualified from one of his Davis Cup matches after unintentionally firing a ball into the umpire’s eye.

Sandgren, who is a two-time Australian Open quarter-finalist, has experienced a disappointing 2021 season so far. The American is yet to win back-to-back matches at a tournament and has only recorded a total of eight wins overall. Since January he has fallen more than 50 places in the ATP rankings.

Full video (go to the 19-minuite mark)

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Daniil Medvedev Marks US Open Milestone With FIFA-Inspired ‘Dead Fish’ Celebration

In his own words, the new champion produced an ‘L2 + Left’ celebration after defeating Novak Djokovic in New York on Sunday.

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Daniil Medvedev reacts to winning the Men's Singles championship match at the 2021 US Open, Sunday, Sep. 12, 2021 in Flushing, NY. (Garrett Ellwood/USTA)

Daniil Medvedev’s reaction to winning his first Grand Slam title at the US Open wasn’t random. In fact, he has been thinking about his FIFA-inspired celebration since Wimbledon.

 

On Sunday the world No.2 defeated Novak Djokovic in straight sets to become only the third Russian man in history to win a major title. The triumph caused heartbreak for his opponent who was on the verge of achieving the elusive Calendar Slam which last happened on the men’s Tour back in 1968. Leading 6-4, 6-4, 5-4, Medvedev sealed victory after a Djokovic return slammed into the net. Prompting him to literally drop to the ground in a somewhat unusual way.

“Only the legends will understand, what I did after the match was a L2 + Left,” he said during the trophy presentation.

The reference was to the game FIFA with L2 + Left being the code for what is called by some as the brick fall celebration or what Medvedev describes as ‘dead fish.’ When a player would just drop to the ground on his side after scoring a goal.

“When I was running through [the draw at] Wimbledon… I was really confident about my game. I think it was one night, you know, you cannot fall asleep. Five, 10 minutes you have crazy thoughts, like every other person,” he said.
“I was like, OK, if I’m going to win Wimbledon, imagine I win it against Novak or whatever. To not celebrate is going to be too boring, because I do it all the time. I need to do something, but I want to make it special.”

Medvedev’s planned celebration was no secret with him openly speaking with others in the locker room leading up to the US Open. No names of who he spoke to were mentioned by the Russian who says his peers described the idea as ‘legendary.’

“I like to play FIFA. I like to play PlayStation. It’s called the dead fish celebration. If you know your opponent when you play FIFA, many times you’re going to do this. You’re going to score a goal, you’re up 5-0, you do this one,” he continued.
“Yeah, I talked to the guys in the locker [room], they’re young guys, super chill guys. They play FIFA. They were like, ‘That’s legendary’. Everybody who I saw who plays FIFA thinks that’s legendary. That’s how I wanted to make it… It’s not easy to make it on hard courts. I got hurt a little bit, but I’m happy I made it legendary for myself.”

It certainly was legendary from Medvedev.

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Medvedev cruises past Auger Aliassime to reach US Open final

Daniil Medvedev is into his third grand slam final after cruising past Felix Auger-Aliassime.

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Daniil Medvedev addresses the crowd after winning a Men's Singles semifinal match at the 2021 US Open, Friday, Sep. 10, 2021 in Flushing, NY. (Garrett Ellwood/USTA)

The world number two booked his spot in Sunday’s final after beating the Canadian in straight sets.

 

Danil Medvedev is into his third grand slam final at the US Open after beating the Montreal native Felix Auger Aliassime in two hours and four minutes 6-4, 7-5, 6-2 hitting 21 winners and 12 aces in the win.

After winning the first set the Canadian had a chance to even the match but faltered when serving for the second set and that’s when the match completely turned on its head.

“It was a strange match and in the second set where everybody felt it was going to be one set all and you never know where the match is going to go and I managed to save the setpoints and the match turned around completely and I didn’t play my best but I am happy to be in the final on Sunday”.

The first set stayed on serve until 3-3 when the Russian earned the first three breakpoints of the match and got the break to take a 4-3 lead and it was enough for him to serve out the first set.

The second set was almost the same as the first five games went on serve and we didn’t witness a breakpoint until 3-2 when the 21-year-old set it up with a great passing shot and broke to take a 4-2 lead.

At 5-3 with the world number 15 had two set points and that’s where the match turned when the world number two managed to save both and break back and broke the following game and served out the second set.

The world number was in full control now and at 1-1 of the third set managed to get the early break and after consolidating it broke the Canadian serve once again and that was enough for him to serve out the match.

After the match in his on-court interview, Medvedev was asked about playing in his second US Open final and his third overall and if he feels different going into it.

“Last time was a crazy match and if it’s the same match on Sunday I hope I can win this time.”

Medvedev will face the world number one Novak Djokovic, who is looking for the calendar grand slam.

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