'Abandoned' Paula Badosa Blasts Australian Open Organisers After Positive COVID-19 Test - UBITENNIS
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‘Abandoned’ Paula Badosa Blasts Australian Open Organisers After Positive COVID-19 Test

The world No.67 has said she is yet to receive training equipment and still doesn’t know what strain of the virus she has.



Paula Badosa (image via https://twitter.com/paulabadosa)

Spanish player Paula Badosa says she feels ‘abandoned’ in quarantine and left in limbo by officials after testing positive for COVID-19 ahead of the Australian Open.

The world No.67 was the first player to test positive for the virus whilst in quarantine in Melbourne. Under rules set out by the Australian government, those arriving in the country are required to go through a 14-day process before they can play any professional tournaments. Badosa had previously said she felt unwell with symptoms of the virus.

Speaking with newspaper Marca, the Spaniard has lashed out at those in charge of running the quarantine process by saying she is still awaiting gym equipment to be provided to her. Tennis Australia had previously said they would provide equipment to those going through a stricter form of the quarantine, which includes 72 players.

“I feel abandoned because I don’t have training equipment which I requested five days ago. I haven’t been told which type of the virus I have, I’ve had no information from the tournament,” she told Marca on Monday.

Badosa says the uncertainty over which strain of COVID-19 she has left her unsure about when she will be able to leave her room again. Under the terms and conditions it had been reported that she could be kept in quarantine until February 5th if she has the British strain which is more infectious. If she doesn’t and tests negative, Badosa could be out by January 31st. The Australian Open starts on February 8th.

The 23-year-old revealed that she is now suffering from panic attacks and claustrophobia in what she describes as the ‘worst experience’ of her career. She is staying in the same room as her coach Javier Marti.

It’s far and away the worst experience of my career,” Badosa said.
“The conditions here are lamentable, I wasn’t expecting that.
“The number one thing people recommend when you have the virus is to open the windows to let in air, but I don’t have windows in my hotel room and it’s barely 15 metres square.
“I have lost a lot of my fitness levels, especially my strength. If I can come out on January 31 I’ll have a week to get in shape. If it’s February 5 it’ll be impossible to recover in time (for the tournament).”

Branding the running of the Melbourne bubble as ‘quite disorganized’ Badosa confirmed that she has been in contact with Tennis Australia chief Craig Tiley who has provided her with support concerning certain issues.

Despite the anger and frustration, there is no chance that the Badosa will skip the first Grand Slam of the season unless she is forced to. Besides the singles, she also intends to team up with Danka Kovinic in the doubles.

“I’ve been fighting my whole life to play ‘Grand Slam’ tournaments and the last thing I would do is not play it. I’m going to try it because you never know,” she concluded.

Badosa, who is yet to win a WTA title, tested positive for COVID-19 on the seventh day of her quarantine. Tennis Australia has so far made no comment concerning her latest remarks.

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Jannik Sinner beats Jan Lennard Struff to reach the semifinal in Halle



Jannik Sinner battled past Jan Lennard Struff 6-2 6-7 (1-7) 7-6 (7-3) to reach his second tour-leve semifinal on grass at the Terra Wortmann Open in Halle. Struff hit 18 aces and saved 16 of the 18 aces he faced, including all 11 in the second and third sets. 

Sinner has scored his third consecutive three-set win at this tournament after beating Tallon Griekspoor and Fabian Maroszan in the first two rounds. 

Sinner broke twice to win the opening set 6-2 in 30 minutes. The Italian player won 67% of his second serve points in the first set. 

Sinner saved a break point in the fourth game of the second set. Struff fended it off with an ace and three more chances two games later as the set headed towards towards a tie-break. 

Struff earned the first mini-break to race out to a 4-0 lead in the tie-break. The German 34-year-old player made a serve and volley at 5-1 to earn a set point. He converted it as Sinner made a backhand error. 

Struff created his first break, when Sinner made two double faults at 2-2 after two hours. 

Sinner earned two break points in the ninth game of the third set, but Struff saved them with his serve and forced Sinner twice to serve to stay in the match. The set was decided by a second tie-break. Struff played his 10th consecutive tie-break in the 2024 season. Earlier this week won a 12-10 final-set tie-break against Luciano Darderi in the opening round before beating Stefanos Tsitsipas in straight sets in the next round on 

Sinner opened up a 3-0 lead in the tie-break. The 2024 Australian Open champions earned four match points in the second tie-break and converted his second chance, as Struff netted a backhand. Sinner won his third head-to-head match against Struff in 2024. 

Earlier at this tournament Sinner came back from a set down to beat Tallon Griekspoor 6-7 (8-10) 6-3 6-2 before beating Hungary’s Fabian Maroszan 6-4 6-7 (4-7) 6-3. 

“It was a very tough match. I had chances in the second set, had chances in the third set, but I could not use them. It was 0-40 in the third set. I jus try to accept these kind of challenges. It has been very tough, also mentally. I am very pleased to be in the next round. I played a lot today, I played a lot yesterday, two and a half hours on grass. It’s a long time”, said Sinner. 

Alexander Zverev rallied past Arthur Fils 6-7 (5-7) 6-3 6-4 in two hours and 30 minutes to reach the semifinal at the Terra Wortmann in Halle. The two-time Halle finalist is aiming to win his first grass title.

Zverev becomes the first player since Roger Federer to reach back-to-back semifinals in Halle. 

The first set went on serve en route to the tie-break. Fils earned his first mini-break to take a 2-0 lead in the tie-break. Zverev pulled back on serve, but Fils got a second mini-break to win the tie-break 7-5. 

Zverev raised his level in the second set breaking Fils at 3-2 with a streak of eight winning consecutive points.  

Zverev sealed the third set 6-4 with a break in the seventh game winning 83% of his first serve points. Fils saved two match points in the ninth game, as he was serving to stay in the match. Zverev served out the win at love in the 10th game. The German player was not broken in the entire match. 

Zverev now leads 2-0 in his two head-to-head matches against Fils. 

Zverev lost to Carlos Alcaraz in five sets in the final of Roland Garros. 

“After the French Open, I was hoping on grass I would a lot quicker and not play for two and a half, three hours every single match, but I am continuing what I always do”, said Zverev. 

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Coco Gauff beats Ekaterina Alexandrova to reach the quarter final in Berlin



Coco Gauff saved three set points in the first set to beat Ekaterina Alexandrova 7-6 (8-6) 6-2 after 1 hour and 20 minutes in the ecotrans Ladies Open in Berlin. 

Alexandrova came back from 2-4 down in the first set to force a tie-break. Alexandrova went up a 6-3 lead in the tie-break as Gauff made her first double fault of the opening set. Gauff saved the three set points after a double fault, a backhand wide and a missed backhand return from Alexandrova. Gauff sealed the first set after Alexandrova made another double fault. 

Gauff dropped just four points on serve in the second set and broke twice, first at love at 1-1 and then at 15 in the seventh game. 

Pegula holds a 2-1 lead against Siniakova, but the Czech player won their only previous head-to-head match 6-3 5-7 6-4 on grass in Bad Homburg in 2021. 

Gauff avenged her defeat against Alexandrova, who beat her US rival 6-4 6-0 in the Round of 16 in Berlin in 2023.

Gauff, who lost to Ons Jabeur in the semifinal in Berlin in 2022, advanced the quarter final of this tournament for the second time in her career. Gauff will renew her rivalry against Jabeur in the semifinal at this year’s edition of the German grass tournament. Jabeur beat Linda Noskova 6-7 (5-7) 6-3 6-4. 

“When you are down in those points in tie-breaks, I just tell myself just to get one, and then one point turns into two. I was just hoping she would not ace me on one of those points. I was just hoping I could get a ball in the court”, said Gauff.  

Gauff was joined in the quarter finals by her doubles partner Jessica Pegula, who beat Donna Vekic 6-4 7-5 to reach her fifth quarter final of the 2024 season. 

Pegula set up a match against Katerina Siniakova, who beat number 6 seed Zheng Qinwen 6-4 6-4 to clinch her 10th win against a top-ten player. Siniakova has reached her fourth quarter final on grass after Birmingham in 2015 and Bad Homburg in 2021 and 2023. Last year she won the Bad Homburg beating Lucia Bronzetti in the final. 

Siniakova earned her first break in the opening game to win the first set 6-4. Zheng broke at love in the second game to take a 2-0 lead. Siniakova won four consecutive games to take a 4-2 lead with two breaks. Zheng pulled back on serve in the eighth game to draw level to 4-4. Siniakova broke for the third time at 15 in the ninth game and sealed the win on her first match point. 

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Jan Lennard Struff upsets Stefanos Tsitsipas to set up quarter final with Jannik Sinner in Halle



Jan Lennard Struff upset Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-4 6-4 after 67 minutes with one break in each set at the Terra Wortmann Open in Halle. 

Struff dropped just five points behind his first serve and hit 22 winners to just 5 unforced errors one day after saving a match point to beat Italy’s Luciano Darderi. Struff avenged last month’s defeat against Tsitsipas in Rome. Struff is now tied at 4-4 in his head-to-head matches against Tsitsipas. 

Struff did not face any break points. The German player earned his first break in the fifth game of the first set and held serve at deuce to open up a 4-2 lead. He held his final two service games at love to close out the first set 6-4. 

Struff earned another break in the fifth game of the second set and sealed the win on his first match point in the 10th game. 

Struff won his first tour-level this year at the ATP 250 tournament in Munich last April. 

“I was very happy. Yesterday was a tough match. I was sick before and today in the morning. I felt good. I had good connection with the ball straight away and came in very well. I was serving pretty good, playing aggressive style. I am very pleased with the way I played”, said Struff. 

Struff has reached the quarter final for the first time in his eleven appearances at the grass ATP 500 tournament in Halle. 

Struff set up a quarter final clash against Jannik Sinner, who beat his German rival in his previous two head-to-head matches in Indian Wells and Monte-Carlo this year. 

Marcos Giron came back from one set down to beat Matteo Berrettini 3-6 6-4 6-3 becoming the first player outside the top 50 to beat the Italian player on grass since world number 53 Gilles Simon at 2018 Wimbledon. 

Berrettini earned an early break at love in the second game and held his next service games to win the first set 6-3. 

Both players went on serve until the 10th game when Giron converted his second break point to seal the second set 6-4. Berrettini did not convert two break points in the first game of the third set. Giron converted his second break point in the sixth game to take a 4-2 lead and served out the win on his first match point. 

“Berrettini is unbelievable on grass, with every tournament he plays on grass he practically makes the final or wins it”, said Giron.  

Giron set up a quarter final match against Hubert Hurkacz. 

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