The Nitto ATP Finals in Turin start the countdown with the official press conference - UBITENNIS
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The Nitto ATP Finals in Turin start the countdown with the official press conference

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The countdown to the 2021 ATP Finals in Turin has begun. The best eight qualified singles players and doubles teams will take part in the eigh-day tournament to be held from 14 to 21 November 2021 at the Pala Alpitour in Turin. 

 

The Turin tournament was officially presented to the Italian media in a press conference held at the headquarter of Intesa San Paolo, the Host Partner of the ATP Finals, in Turin. The press conference was attended by ATP Chairman Andrea Gaudenzi, Italian Tennis Federation President Angelo Binaghi and Turin Major Chiara Appendino, who is a keen tennis fan. 

With less than one year to go, the press conference marked the launch of a coordinated national and international communication campaign by the City of Turin, Piedmont Region, Turin Chamber of Commerce and Tourism Turin, the ATP and the Italian Tennis Federation. The ticket sale has just start. Spectators and tourists will be able to follow matches and experience throughout the city. Ticketing promotion will be focused on attracting younger generations and schools closer to tennis.

“I started working as ATP President last year and I was behing the scenes as a Board Member of the ATP, when the cities presented their bid to host this event. Turin showed passion enthusiasm and this made the difference. Italy has hosted the Internazionali BNL d’Italia for many years and has shown that this country is able to host high-quality events. We want to attract a lot of fans in the next years. We started this year with the pandemic, but I am optimistic that we will overcome this crisis and the ATP Finals will be a very successful event. Italian players are reaching a very good level and it’s a very important factor for the future success of the ATP Finals“, said ATP Chairman Andrea Gaudenzi.

Launching the countdown to the tournament is an exciting milestone, and we look forward to five years of close collaboration with all event partners, to build upon the growth of our season finale. We are very ambitious. We have set a very high standard in 12 years when London hosted the ATP Finals from 2009 to 2020. The event attracted more than 3 million spectators in 12 years. I am confident that Turin, Piedmont and Italy will make a great job. As a former player my dream was to qualify for the ATP Finals, but I have never managed to fulfil this goal, but I am happy that I will take part at this tournament as ATP President. As Italian, I am happy that Italy will host the Finals. The tournament has been hosted in cities around the world. I am very proud. We will do a great job.

We thank our sponsors Nitto, Emirates, FedEx, Rolex and Dunlop. Without their support it would not be possible to host this tournament. We have one billion of fans in five continents. We have to do a lot of work, but this tournament is a great opportunity to promote our sport. We hope to improve the distribution of this event through the media and show a high-level tournament to our fans. The Finals are the most important tournament for the ATP, as this tournament crowns the best player of the season. We hope that we will be back to normal and return to our traditional ATP Race to Turin, that includes only the results from 1 January 2021. We are confident that we will have a normal calendar and host the clay tournaments in their traditional dates”.

It has been two years since Turin bid to host the Nitto ATP Finals from 2021 to 2025 after prevailing over forty foreign cities. 

“We would not have done it without the passion and drive of the region, in particular the Mayor of Turin Chiara Apendino, and without the support of the Government, the Piedmont Region and our brand partners. The ATP Finals are the most important indoor tournament in the world. To win the bid to host the ATP Finals was like climbing the Mount Everest. The success of the Internazionali BNL d’Italia was the recognition of years of work and we continued to set higher goals. We have built a great team with the Italian Government, the Italian region, the City of Turin and our sponsors and our goal is to host a great edition in 2021. Our goal is to make 15000 spectators true tennis fans. We also want to show our recognition to the local partners, who have shown their support”, said Angelo Binaghi. 

Turin is aiming its long tradition in hosting big sport events that started in 2006 with the Winter Olympic Games. 

“I feel emotional. When we presented our bid, we had only a very small chance to win it, but we have never given up and we continued working hard as a team. Without the support of our local parners, we would have never managed to win the bid. We will welcome the best players in the world and we want to stage a great event. Turin has a long tradition of sport, and thanks to an extraordinary team effort, we are delighted to bring the Nitto ATP Finals to our city. We look to the next five years with determination, confident in the knowledge the event that will have a positive economic impact to our territory and strenthen the image of Turin all over the world”, said Chiara Appendino.

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Another Defeat For Iga Swiatek – Should Her Fans Start To Worry?

Iga Swiatek unexpectedly lost to Beatrice Haddad Maia in the quarter-finals of the National Bank Open in Toronto. This was the third defeat of the WTA world No.1 in a month and a half. Is there anything to worry about?

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Iga Swiatek - Roland Garros 2022 (photo Roberto Dell'Olivo)

Article written by Dominik Senkowski (@dsenkowski07)

 

It was an extremely close match played in difficult conditions. Swiatek lost to Beatrice Hadad Maia 4:6, 6:3, 5:7 in Toronto.

The Polish woman admitted that she could not deal with the strong wind, saying during her press conference “I think without the wind I would manage. But it was pretty crazy out there.”

Haddad Miai, who is the first Brazilian to reach the last eight of a WTA 1000 event, revealed that she also had problems with the weather.

”We have no influence on the weather, we have to deal with it somehow. I think mentally I managed to overcome it,” she said.

Three failures

This was the third defeat for Swiatek in a month and a half. She had been undefeated since February, winning six tournaments in a row, including a Roland Garros. After that, however, she did not reach the semi-finals even once. In Wimbledon she was eliminated in the third round by Alize Cornet and then in Warsaw in the quarter-finals by Caroline Garcia. Now she did not make it past Beatrice Hadad Maia in Toronto. Do fans of the Polish woman have anything to worry about?

Of course, Swiatek as the top seed should have played better against the Brazilian. However, it must be remembered that she is still only 21 years old and has the right to fluctuate in form. Even the best tennis players of recent years – Roger Federer, Serena Serena, Rafael Nadal, and Novak Djokovic – did not win all the games in their best time. Swiatek still has a phenomenal balance of 49 wins to 5 defeats this year. She is the undisputed leader of the WTA rankings and will probably end the year as number one in the world.

There is no doubt that the rivals are more motivated to clash with Iga. In addition, they increasingly believe that they are able to defeat her since Cornet, Garcia and Hadad Maia did it. But still, it all depends on Iga. If she improves her serve, she can be unstoppable again. Recently with Garcia and Hadad Maia, she had problems with the second serve. She must pay more attention to it.

Time for Iga

Time should play in favour of Swiatek. Before Toronto, she played exceptionally on clay courts in Warsaw in a tournament organized by her father Tomasz. Frequent changes of the surface from grass to clay and hard courts in 1.5 months are not easy at such a young age. In Poland Iga said that she had no experience with it, she was just learning. She continues to learn valuable lessons and still can be better. We should remember it.

It seems that in the coming days she will be training on hard courts. She could feel more confident and come stronger as in spring. In Warsaw Iga said that she treats the first tournament before the US Open swing less seriously. She was aware that she needed more playing time to get better results. Her increasing self-esteem makes her behave calmer, even after defeats. That is why she can return to the right path soon.

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Rafael Nadal Returns To Cincinnati With Shot At No.1 Ranking

This is what the king of clay has to do to reclaim the top position.

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ATP RAFAEL NADAL OF SPAIN - PHOTO: DIEGO SOUTO / MMO

It has been over a month since Rafael Nadal last played a match on the Tour but in the coming days, he will have a chance to return to the top of the ATP rankings.

 

The 22-time Grand Slam champion has been absent from action ever since pulling out of his semi-final match at Wimbledon due to an abdominal tear. He was set to play at this week’s National Bank Open in Montreal but withdrew after feeling a ‘slight bother’ in his abdominal region following training. Nadal decided not to play after consulting with his doctor.

Instead, the Spaniard will return next week at the Western and Southern Open in Cincinnati. He confirmed his return in an Instagram post, where he wrote: “Very happy to play again in Cincy. Flying there tomorrow (Thursday).”

Whilst the Spaniard will be finding his feet in the coming days, in Cincinnati he has a chance to dethrone Daniil Medvedev from the world No.1 position. Medvedev lost his opening match in Montreal to Nick Kyrgios. To do this he would need to win the Masters 1000 event for the second time in his career and hope that Medvedev doesn’t make the quarter-finals. Nadal won Cincinnati back in 2013 after defeating John Isner in the final.

So far in his career, Nadal has spent 209 weeks as world No.1 with his longest streak being 56 weeks in a row (2010-2011). In total, he has been at the top of the rankings for eight separate periods and last held the position in February 2020.

Nadal’s No.1 stints
-Aug 18 2008 – Jul 5th 2009 (46 weeks)
-Jun 7 2010 – Jul 3rd 2011 (56 weeks)
-Oct 7th 2013 – Jul 6th 2014 (39 weeks)
-Aug 21 2017 – Feb 18 2018 (26 weeks)
-Apr 2nd 2018 – May 13th 2018 (6 weeks)
-May 21st 2018 – Jun 17th 2018 (4 weeks)
-Jun 25th 2018 – Nov 4th 2018 (19 weeks)
-Nov 4th 2019 – Feb 2nd 2020 (13 weeks)

At present nine out of the world’s top 10 players will participate in the Western and Southern Open. The only exception is Novak Djokovic who is currently banned from entering America because he isn’t vaccinated against Covid-19.

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Jack Draper Considered Skipping Montreal Masters Before Getting Biggest Win Of Career

The rising star completes a trio of British players who have booked their places in the third round of the Masters 1000 event.

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Image via https://twitter.com/OBNmontreal/

British qualifier Jack Draper says his decision to play in Montreal this week has paid off after he scored his first-ever win over a top 10 player on Wednesday.

 

The 20-year-old stunned world No.5 and third seed Stefanos Tsitsipas 7-5, 7-6(4), in what is only his fourth appearance in the main draw of a Masters 1000 event. Draper, who is currently ranked 82nd in the world, won 74% of his first service points and blasted 21 winners past his Greek rival. Recovering from a 1-3 deficit in the second set en route to a straight sets victory.

Leading up to this week, Draper and his team considered not playing in Montreal following his 6-4, 6-2, loss to Andrey Rublev in Washington. However, their decision to do so was the right one. After coming through two rounds of qualifying, he beat France’s Hugo Gaston in the first round before knocking out Tsitsipas.

“This is why I put in all the hard work, for nights like this on stages like this,” Draper said in an on-court interview. “Last week [after] Washington, me and my coach probably were thinking we weren’t even going to come here. We were going to maybe train a week, get a bit of confidence. But it paid off coming.”
“I didn’t really have much of a game plan. I just thought I needed to play good tennis to beat Stefanos. He’s at the top of the game for a reason. [He’s] someone I’ve looked up to the last few years. It’s just good to be out here and try to express myself on this stage.” He added.

Draper’s win comes during what has been a solid season for the Brit who has won four Challenger titles. A former top 10 junior player, he won his first main draw Grand Slam match in June at Wimbledon and reached the semi-finals of the Eastbourne International.

Awaiting the youngster in the third round will be French veteran Gael Monfils who is playing in his first tournament since May. Monfils defeated Maxime Cressy 7-6(10), 7-6(8).

Draper is one of three British players to have reached the last 16 in Montreal. Ninth seed Cameron Norrie will next play home favourite Felix Auger-Aliassime and Dan Evans faces Taylor Fritz.

According to the Pepperstone live ATP rankings, Draper will break into the world’s top 70 for the first time next week.

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