Lorenzo Musetti advances to his first ATP Tour quarter final at the Sardinia Open - UBITENNIS
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Lorenzo Musetti advances to his first ATP Tour quarter final at the Sardinia Open

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Last year’s Australian Open Junior champion Lorenzo Musetti beat his compatriot 6-2 6-1 in 60 minutes with two breaks in each game at the Sardinia Open at the Forte Village in Santa Margherita di Pula to reach his first ATP Tour quarter final. 

 

Musetti made a major breakthrough in September 2020, when he beat Stan Wawrinka and Kei Nishikori to reach the third round at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in Rome. He broke into the top 200 on 21 September and reached a career-high of world number 138 in the ATP Ranking on 28 September. He beat four top 100 players (Frances Tiafoe, Andreas Seppi, Lloyd Harris and Thiago Monteiro) to win his first ATP Challenger Tour title in Forlì. Last January Musetti fell in the final round of qualifying at the Australian Open. He made his ATP Tour debut last winter in Dubai where he lost to Andrey Rublev in the first round. 

Musetti set up a quarter final clash against Yannick Hanfmann, who cruised past Rome Masters 1000 semifinalist Casper Ruud 6-2 6-1 to reach the quarter final. Hanfmann earned an early break at 15 in the opening game and held his serve after saving four break points. The German player got the double break at love and held his next two service games to close out the opening set 6-2. 

Hanfmann started the second set with an immediate break. In the fourth game he saved three break points and held his serve with an ace to open up a 4-1 lead. Hanfmann closed out the match 6-1 with his third game. 

Hanfmann scored the biggest win of his career, when he beat number 9 seed Gael Monfils in Hamburg. The German player fended off all eight break points he faced against Ruud, who won two clay titles in Buenos Aires and Santiago. 

Former Roland Garros semifinalist Marco Cecchinato beat number 7 seed Tommy Paul 7-6 (7-1) 6-4 in 1 hour and 27 minutes to advance to the quarter finals. Cecchinato got the first break in the second game and held his next service games to build up a 5-2 lead. Paul broke back in the 10th game to draw level to 5-5 sending the first set to the tie-break. Cecchinato got three mini-breaks to win the tie-break 7-1. 

Cecchinato rallied from 40-15 down to break serve in the first game of the second set. He saved a break-back point to hold his serve after a long rally. The Italian player did not face any break points in the his next service game to close out the second set 6-4.

Cecchinato won 35 of his 39 first-service points. The Palermo-native player set up a quarter final match against Spain’s Albert Ramos Vinolas, who cruised past Corentin Moutet 6-0 6-3. 

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Why Newly Married Elina Svitolina Has No Plans To Change Her Surname

The Ukrainian explains why she isn’t using her husband’s surname of Monfils just yet as she books her place in the third round at Tokyo 2020.

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Just over a week ago Elina Svitolina tied the knot with her long-time partner Gael Monfils at a ceremony in Geneva, Switzerland.

 

Shortly after the world No.6 took to social media and changed her name on Twitter to Elina Monfils as part of the tradition that the woman takes on the man’s name once they are married. As a consequence, various websites started to identify the Ukrainian under that name. Although she would rather that they don’t do such a thing.

“I don’t know why they changed my surname. Maybe they saw that I had changed it on my social networks,” Svitolina told BTU.
“I’m going to play as Svitolina till the very end of my professional career and will change it only after retirement.”

Svitolina explains she believes it is better if all of her achievements are made under the same name instead of two. So far in her career she has won 15 WTA titles, reached two Grand Slam semi-finals and has earned more than $20.5M in prize money.

I had numerous achievements and people know me as Svitolina. My father would be upset if I changed the surname and played as Monfils,” she joked.
“I am proud to be Svitolina and my tennis career will always be connected with this surname.”

Over the coming week the 26-year-old is hoping to add an Olympic medal to her resume. On Monday Svitolina survived a stern scare after coming back from a set down to defeat Ajla Tomljanović 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 and move into the third round of the tournament. Her win came on the day where there were shocks galore in the women’s draw with seeds Aryna Sabalenka, Iga Swiatek and Petra Kvitova all crashing out.

Svitolina will play Greece’s Maria Sakkari in the next round whom she has lost to in two out of their three previous meetings.

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Stefanos Tsitsipas ‘Happy’ To Follow In Grandfather’s Footsteps At Olympics

The Greek speaks out about carrying his family’s legacy at the Games.

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Stefanos Tsitsipas never met his grandfather but the two of them do have something in common – they are both Olympians.

 

The world No.4 has already created history in Tokyo by winning his first round match against Germany’s Philipp Kohlschreiber on Sunday to become the first male player from his country to win a singles match since 1924. Greece has won two medals at the Games but both of them were during its inaugural edition back in 1896.

Tsitsipas’ debut in Tokyo enables him to continue his family legacy of playing in the sporting extravaganza. His grandfather was Sergei Salnikov who played football for the Soviet Union during the 1950s. In 1956 Salnikov was part of the team who won Olympic gold in Melbourne. After retiring from the sport, he went on to manage the FC Spartak Moscow and the Afghanistan national team before passing away in 1984 aged 58.

“I’ve never had the opportunity to meet him. But my mom told me stories of his career and how he got it…. He kind of inspires me in a way,” said Tsitsipas. “I know what kind of athlete he was, with all the achievements and all the trophies. I’m proud of him.
“It’s something good, a legacy that is being carried on in the family. I’m happy to be the next in the family to be competing at the Olympics.”

It isn’t just a medal in the singles Tsitsipas has his eyes on, he will also be bidding for success in the mixed doubles alongside Maria Sakkari. The two previously paired up at the 2019 Hopman Cup where they finished second in their group.

“We have already played once (together), and we had great success,” Sakkari told reporters on Monday. “We know each other really well, and we are much better players two-and-a-half years later, and we are both really pumped to play together. Of course, I cannot predict that we will get a medal. We will try our best and I think we give ourselves the best chance we can.”

Tsitsipas will return to action tomorrow in the men’s singles where he will play Frances Tiafoe in the second round.

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Carlos Alcaraz becomes the youngest ever champion at ATP Tour level since Kei Nishikori in 2008

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Carlos Alcaraz beat Richard Gasquet 6-2 6-2 in the final of the Plava Laguna Croatia Open Umag becoming the youngest ever champion at ATP Tour level since 18-year-old Kei Nishikori in Delray Beach in 2008 and the youngest Spanish ATP Tour champion since RafaelNadal in Sopot 2004. 

 

Alcaraz earned his first break in the third game to take a 2-1 lead with an inside-in forehand winner and he never looked back by holding his next service games. The Spanish teenager broke serve in the third game as Gasquet made a double fault. Alcaraz converted his third break point in the fifth game to open up a 4-1 lead. Gasquet earned three break points but he was not able to convert them. 

“I had a lot of good moments in this tournament. I beat five great tennis players. I think that I grew up a lot in this tournament and  I keep a lot of experience from this tournament. It’s going to be useful for the future”, said Alcaraz. 

Gasquet was aiming to win his first ATP Tour title since s’Hertogenbosch in 2018. 

“It was tough for me to play with his full intensity. I had a tough match yesterday. It was tough, and especially with a guy like Carlos, who is playing really fast with a lot of energy and spin. He is playing unbeievable. He is only 18 and of course he had a great future and Ijust could not play at his level and his intensity”, said Gasquet. 

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