Pablo Andujar Produces Two Set Comeback To Knock Out Thiem - UBITENNIS
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Pablo Andujar Produces Two Set Comeback To Knock Out Thiem

Dominic Thiem let a two set to love lead slip as Pablo Andujar reached the second round.

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Pablo Andujar (@usopen - Twitter)

Dominic Thiem let a two set to love lead slip as Pablo Andujar advanced with a 4-6 5-7 6-3 6-4 6-4 victory.

 

It was heartbreak for the Austrian who had been building up for Roland Garros but ultimately fell to the determined Andujar.

The Spaniard’s five set win means he’s beaten two top 10 players in less than two weeks after his win over Roger Federer in Geneva.

It was the Austrian who made the quicker start as he broke in the first game with his first break point opportunity.

Thiem’s kick serve was one of the keys to constructing simple points against Andjuar and he use that to his advantage to save break point in the next game.

As expected there were some long rallies and punishing games as this match had all the makings of a 3 hour plus contest.

Andujar was dictating points from the baseline but didn’t have enough power to bully Thiem who was constantly changing the pace of the match using his slice.

It was the fourth seed who was in control and despite being unable to convert five break points in the fifth game, took the first set 6-4 in 57 minutes.

The second set was more complicated as the Spaniard mixed patience with aggression well on return.

A pair of breaks were exchanged in the third and fourth games as Thiem lost his serve for the first time today.

However the two-time finalist in Paris regained his composure as he opened up the court effectively to seal a break to love for 4-3.

Despite Andujar breaking back when Thiem was serving, the Austrian’s aggressive returns and deadly backhand down the line at crucial moments gave him back the advantage.

A break to love and a crucial hold saw the US Open champion have a two sets to love lead.

Although signs of the Thiem from a couple of years ago had appeared, confidence is at a low for the Austrian with not many wins under his belt.

A more conservative third set was played from Thiem as Andujar started to show the clay court experience that he has had in his long career.

More consistent serving mixed with good shot depth saw the Spaniard make his way into the match.

The world number 68 secured the crucial break in the eighth game as he took the third set 6-3.

In the fourth set, Thiem failed to find his shot-making range that was so effective in the first two sets.

After saving two break points, Andujar took the initiative and forced the errors out of an erratic Thiem.

A double break swiftly secured the key blows and despite earning a break back, Thiem’s inconsistency would be his downfall.

Playing more solid Tennis, Andujar would close out the fourth set and this match would go to a fifth set after 3 hours and 40 minutes.

The fifth set started with an exchange of breaks as Thiem’s level slightly improved and his fighting qualities was there to see.

However the Austrian’s first serve continued to let him down as he continued to play conservative tennis.

A break in the fifth game was what Andujar needed as he continued to punish Thiem with brutal rallies.

Despite the fourth seed’s efforts to save the match and his Roland Garros title hopes, the Spaniard’s court coverage and solid play was good enough.

Another forehand winner sealed victory as Andujar fell to the ground in delight after four and a half hours.

A disappointing campaign ends in a painful defeat for Thiem, who had been working hard to reach his best form for this tournament.

As for Andujar he will play Radu Albot or Federico Delbonis in the next round.

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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 reaches his first ATP Tour final in Umag

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Spanish Next Gen star Carlos Alcaraz secured a spot in his first ATP tour-level final with a 6-2 7-6 (7-3) at the Plava Laguna Croatia Open in Umag. 

 

Alcaraz has become the youngest ATP Tour finalist since 18-year-old Kei Nishikori won the Delray Beach title in 2008. 

Alcaraz broke twice to open up a 4-0 lead and held his next service games to close out the first set 6-2. 

Ramos Vinolas came back from a break down three times in the second set, when Alcaraz served for the match. Alcaraz battled through the second-set tie-break to clinch the win after two hours. 

Alcaraz set up a final against Richard Gasquet, who battled past German qualifier Daniel Altmeier 7-6 (7-2) 3-6 6-3 after three hours and 11 minutes. 

Gasquet has become the second oldest finalist in tournament history. The 35-year-old saved seven of hi sten break points, but he converted just just 3 of his 17 break points.  

Gasquet rallied from a break down twice to draw level to 4-4 before winning the tie-break 7-2. Altmeier converted his third break point in the eighth game to win the second set 6-3. Altmeier saved three break points in the second game, before Gasquet converted his second break point in the sixth game to win the second set 6-3. 

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Novak Djokovic Cruises Past Dellien In Olympics Opener

Novak Djokovic’s bid for a historic golden slam continued in Tokyo.

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Novak Djokovic (@ITFTennis - Twitter)

Novak Djokovic cruised past Hugo Dellien 6-2 6-2 to open his bid for a gold medal at the Olympics.

 

The world number one’s bid to achieve the golden slam is on after thrashing the Bolivian in humid conditions.

A perfect start for the Serbian who is looking to achieve the one thing he is yet to achieve and that’s win a gold medal.

Next for Djokovic will be Germany’s Jan-Lennard Struff.

In 32C temperatures, Djokovic was looking to start his campaign off against Bolivian veteran Hugo Dellien.

The slow paced courts would suit Dellien as he engaged in some long rallies with the world number one early on.

Despite creating three break points in the fourth game, Djokovic would fail to break early on.

However Djokovic increased his level mixing up the pace and depth of his shots to create angles for simple winners.

On his fifth break point Djokovic would break for a 4-2 lead and the top seed would break for a second time as Dellien had no answers for the Serb’s defensive skills. First set to Djokovic in 33 minutes.

A similar pattern evolved in the second set only this time Djokovic did get a break in the fourth game, breaking to love.

Accurate serving and construction of points gave Djokovic an easy first round match as another break secured the match and sealed his spot into the second round.

A fine performance in tough conditions gave Djokovic’s bid for history the best possible start.

Next for Djokovic will be Jan-Lennard Struff who beat Thiago Monteiro 6-3 6-4.

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