Wimbledon Daily Preview: The Last Manic Monday - UBITENNIS
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Wimbledon Daily Preview: The Last Manic Monday



Centre Court, Wimbledon (twitter.com/Wimbledon)

With middle Sunday to host play each year starting in 2022, this will be the last scheduled Manic Monday, often the best day of the entire tennis year.  All round of 16 singles matches will be played across the six show courts at The All England Club.  Centre Court alone has 42 Major singles titles represented.  They belong to three players, who are also the only previous champions still alive in the singles draws: Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic, and Angelique Kerber.


As so many great matchups will take place throughout the day, this preview will break with normal format, and take a brief look at all 16 fourth round singles matches in chronological order.  Outer courts will begin at 11:00am local time, while No.1 Court will start at 1:00pm, and Centre Court at 1:30pm.

Iga Swiatek (7) vs. Ons Jabeur (21) – 11:00am on No.2 Court

This could be one of the best matches of the entire day, between two of the WTA’s best players of the past 12 months, and two players with a ton of variety in their games.  Swiatek is yet to drop a set, while Jabeur already took out two Wimbledon champions in Week 1: Venus Williams and Garbine Muguruza.  Iga claimed their only previous meeting in three sets, which occurred two years ago in Washington on a hard court.  Both are vying for their first quarterfinal at The Championships.

Aryna Sabalenka (2) vs. Elena Rybakina (18) – 11:00am on No.3 Court

Rybakina was a quarterfinalist a few weeks ago at Roland Garros, and is another player who didn’t drop a set through three rounds.  Sabalenka is the far more accomplished player outside the Majors, though she’s yet to advance beyond this round at Slams.  Aryna is 2-0 against Elena, with both hard court matches going three sets, and both not at Majors.

Matteo Berrettini (7) vs. Ilya Ivashka – 11:00am on Court 12

Queen’s Club champion Berrettini has now 8-0 on grass this season, and has won 22 of his last 25 matches overall, with his only losses coming to players ranked 6th or higher.  Ivashka is a 27-year-old from Belarus who was 1-6 at Slams prior to this fortnight, and didn’t defeat a player ranked within the top 60 to reach this stage.

Karen Khachanov (25) vs. Sebastian Korda – 11:00am on Court 18

Khachanov defeated two other Americans in the first week: Mackenzie McDonald and Frances Tiafoe.  But no American male has been better this year than Korda, who has a record of 26-11.  And Sebastian already beat two other top 30 seeds in the last two rounds.  Korda turns 21 on Monday, and I would not be surprised to watch him celebrate his birthday by reaching his first Major quarterfinal.

Andrey Rublev (5) vs. Marton Fucsovics – Second on No.2 Court

This is their fifth meeting since last October, all of which have gone to Rublev.  As he walked off the court after their match in Dubai, Fucsovics said to Rublev, “I hope I don’t play you anymore this year,” but that wish has not been granted.  And considering Marton is 0-3 in the fourth round of Slams, Rublev is a considerable favorite to reach his fourth quarterfinal out of the last five Majors.

Roberto Bautista Agut (8) vs. Denis Shapovalov (10) – Second on No.3 Court

This could be another of the best matches on the day, between two top 10 seeds with clashing styles.  Bautista Agut is a righty, flat-hitting veteran, while Shapovalov is a lefty upstart with a lot of RPM’s on his forehand.  The Spaniard was a semifinalist here two years ago.  By contrast, the Canadian was 1-3 at Wimbledon before this run to the second week.

Karolina Pliskova (8) vs. Ludmilla Samsonova (WC) – Second Court 12

Samsonova is not your typical wild card.  The 22-year-old was the champion a few weeks ago in Berlin, where she took out three top 30 players.  This is her first year playing on grass, and she’s yet to lose a match.  Pliskova has never advanced beyond this round at SW19, stalling on this day in both of the last two Wimbledons.  But she’s not dropped a set yet at this year’s event.

Madison Keys (23) vs. Viktorija Golubic – Second on Court 18

Keys was a quarterfinalist here six years ago, yet hasn’t gone that far at the Championships since.  She’s split two previous meetings with Golubic, a 28-year-old from Switzerland who was 4-17 in her career at Majors coming into this fortnight.

Ash Barty (1) vs. Barbora Krejcikova (14) – 1:00pm on No.1 Court

It’s the 2019 French Open champion against the 2021 champ.  Barty is an impressive 31-6 on the year, but Krejcikova is on a 15-match win streak.  Neither has played their best yet this fortnight, but if they both do today, this could be a stellar contest.  Krejcikova suffered from an abdominal injury during her third round win.

Novak Djokovic (1) vs. Cristian Garin (17) – 1:30pm on Centre Court

Djokovic hasn’t lost in the fourth round of Wimbledon since 2006, while this is only Garin’s second time this far at a Major, and he was 0-3 lifetime at The All-England Club until last week.

Daniil Medvedev (2) vs. Herbert Hurkacz (14) – Third on No.2 Court

Medvedev came back from two-sets-down on Saturday against 2017 Wimbledon runner-up Marin Cilic, the first time he’s ever done so in his career.  Hurkacz went 0-6 after winning this year’s Miami Open, but as per Chris Oddo, he’s the only player who has not lost his serve thus far. 

Karolina Muchova (19) vs. Paula Badosa (30) – Third on Court 12

Muchova is looking to reach the quarterfinals for the second time in what is also her second appearance at The Championships.  Badosa survived a grueling battle with Magda Linette on Saturday, and was a quarterfinalist last month in Paris.  But before this tournament, Badosa only owned two main-draw victories on this surface.

Sascha Zverev (4) vs. Felix Auger-Aliassime (16) – Second on No.1 Court

Zverev has now advanced to the second week at seven consecutive Majors, and has taken 16 of his last 19 matches.  Auger-Aliassime benefited from the retirement of Nick Kyrgios on Saturday.  Felix is 0-2 in the round of 16 at Slams, and 0-3 against Sascha, having never won a set.

Coco Gauff (20) vs. Angelique Kerber (25) – Second on Centre Court

This is the most anticipated match of the day, between the 2018 champion and the breakout star of the 2019 tournament.  Bad Homburg champ Kerber is on an eight-match win streak on grass, and Parma champ Gauff is 17-3 since May.  Coco is playing for her second straight Major quarterfinal, while Kerber is looking for her first since she won this title three years ago.

Ajla Tomljanovic vs. Emma Raducanu (WC) – Third on No.1 Court

Tomljanovic ousted French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko is a fiery three-set encounter.  Raducanu is the breakout star of this year’s Wimbledon.  The 18-year-old, ranked 338th in the world, has thrilled the British crowd with her thrilling run in her first Grand Slam appearance.  And Emma is yet to relinquish a set.

Roger Federer (6) vs. Lorenzo Sonego (23) – Third on Centre Court

Federer is 17-0 in the fourth round of this tournament.  Sonego is yet to face a player ranked higher than 91st, but the 26-year-old Italian is having a great season.  He’s reached two finals, including one on grass, and advanced to the semis of the Rome Masters.

Monday’s full Order of Play is here.


India’s Sumit Nagal Receives Sponsorship Boost After Revelling Financial Struggles



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

A leading food and drink company has pledged to support India’s highest-ranked men’s player who was unable to train at his usual facility in Germany earlier this year due to a lack of money. 


Earlier this week world No.159 Sumit Nagal made a public plea for financial support to help him continue his career as a tennis player. In recent years he has been based at the Nansel Tennis Academy in Germany but was unable to train there during the first three months of the 2023 season due to a lack of funds. During this period he relied on his friends, including former player Somdev Devvarman, to help maintain his fitness. 

“If I look at my bank balance, I have what I had at the beginning of the year. It is 900 euros. I did get a bit of help. Mr Prashant Sutar is helping me with MAHA Tennis Foundation and I also get monthly (salary) from IOCL but I don’t have any big sponsor,” Nagal told the Press Trust of India.
“I am investing whatever I am making. The yearly cost where I travel with one coach is costing me around Rs 8 million to Rs 10 million (90,000-113,000 euros) and that is just with one travelling coach (no physio). Whatever I have made I have already invested,” he added.

Nagal, who is 26 years old, has reached the semi-finals of better at five tournaments on the lower-level Challenger Tour so far this season. His only Grand Slam result was at the US Open where he lost in the first round of qualifying to Taro Daniel. It was at the US Open where he took a set off Roger Federer before losing in 2019. 

Despite being the only player from his country to be ranked in the top 400, Nagal is currently not part of the Target Olympics Podium Scheme. An initiative set up by the Indian government to provide support to their top athletes.

After learning about Nagal’s ongoing struggles on the Tour, a leading company has decided to support the tennis player by signing a three-year deal with him. Gatorade specializes in sports drinks and is manufactured by PepsiCo. Under the deal, Nagal will receive support with his recovery and nutrition from experts at the Gatorade Sports Science Institute (GSSI).  

“I am deeply moved and grateful to join hands with Gatorade. This association comes to me at a pivotal time, and I am thankful my hard work and passion is getting recognized and appreciated. With Gatorade by my side, I am sure I will reach new heights and give it my all both on and off the court,” the Indo-Asian News Service quoted Nagal as saying on Thursday. 

Speaking about the new partnership, Ankit Agarwal from PepsiCo India has hailed the collaboration. Agarwal is the company’s Associate Director of Energy & Hydration. 

“Sumit is a role model for the new-gen athletes of India with his career being a true example of hard work and sweat that makes talent shine,” he said.
“As a brand that is dedicated to supporting athletes in removing barriers to sporting success, we are delighted to welcome Sumit to the Gatorade squad.”

Nagal has been ranked as high as No.122 in the world. So far in his career, he has won four Challenger titles with two of those occurring this year in Italy and Finland. 

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(VIDEO): Malaga Line-Up Set As Davis Cup Most Unpredictable Tournament In History

UbiTennis founder Ubaldo Scanagatta explains why any of the eight teams in Malaga could win November’s Davis Cup Finals




(@DavisCup - Twitter)

The Davis Cup quarter-final line-up is set after an incredible Group Stage over Bologna, Split, Manchester and Valencia.


Now eight teams remain including Novak Djokovic’s Serbia, Great Britain and Australia.

However surprise teams such as the Netherlands, Finland and the Czech Republic will also appear in the quarter-finals.

Ten-time champions Great Britain will face Serbia with the winners taking on the winner of the quarter-final between Italy and the Netherlands.

In the other half of the draw Canada will be heavy favourites against Finland while the Czech Republic face Australia.

The final eight tournament will take place in Malaga and will take place between the 21st and the 26th of November.

However this year’s Davis Cup could be the most unpredictable version in the tournament’s history with there being no Spain or USA.

It really could be anyone’ tournament with Tennis’ most prestigious team competition up for grabs in November.

In this video UbiTennis founder Ubaldo Scanagatta explains why this year’s Davis Cup finals could be the most unpredictable edition of all-time and why any of the teams could win the title.

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Simona Halep Claims Doing Ban Is ‘Based On Scenarios’ Without Proof




Former world No.1 Simona Halep has questioned the fairness of her anti-doping hearing after being suspended from the sport for four years. 


The two-time Grand Slam champion is suspended from tour events until 2026 after an independent tribunal concluded that the Romanian broke rules set out in Tennis’ anti-doping program. In a 126-page report by the International Tennis Integrity Agency (ITIA), investigators accepted that the collagen supplement taken by Halep – called Keto MCT – was contaminated with Roxadustat “on the balance of probability.” However, they stated that there must have been another source of Roxadustat based on the level detected in her sample taken during the 2022 US Open. 

Furthermore, three experts in the area said they have ‘a high degree of confidence‘ that there was not an ‘innocent explanation’ for the abnormalities detected in Halep’s Athlete’s Biological Passport (ABP). They reported that ‘likely doping’ occurred based on an analysis of 51 valid samples of Halep’s blood and rejected her explanation for the irregularity. The tennis star cited blood loss during surgery and spells when she was inactive as her defence. 

Despite the comprehensive ruling, Halep has insisted that she is innocent and never intentionally took any banned substances. During an interview with Front Office Sports on Monday, the 31-year-old claimed that the ITIA’s four-year ban handed to her was based on ‘scenarios’ instead of any proof. 

“I was confident after the hearing because there were so many things that made no sense and that are not fair,” she said.
“When I received the decision, I was in complete shock. I could not believe that they suspended me for four years when we found the contamination and my blood was totally normal. They didn’t find anything bad in my blood. It’s crazy that they made this decision with everything [her legal team presented]. They judged me on scenarios. There is no proof. It’s just insane.”

The ITIA originally requested a six-year ban for Halep due to what they described as ‘repetitive and sophisticated’ doping practices. She is accused of using blood doping to improve her performance during Wimbledon and the US Open last year. However, the report found it was not ‘completely satisfied’ that Halep has been doping since March 2022 despite there being ‘strong grounds for suspicion.’

As for the substance Roxadustat, Halep says she would have never deliberately taken the drug as it would ‘work against her.’ She says that the drug would have worsened a thyroid issue which she has been dealing with for several years. Front Office Sports referred to a European Medicines Agency study which finds a possible link between the drug and decreased thyroid function. 

“There was no point for me to take this,” Halep said. “It’d work against me. It wouldn’t help me.”

The study couldn’t establish how common this side effect is due to the amount of data available at the time. 

In the wake of Halep’s ban, some have publicly expressed their views on the matter. One of the most notable to do so was Serena Williams who wrote on social media ‘8 is a better number” in a jibe at her former opponent. The reference was to the 2019 Wimbledon final when seven-time champion Williams lost in straight sets to Halep. 

“I think everyone has the right to judge me because the tribunal decided that I have the fault here,” Halep commented. “Someone told me today that those players who are hating on me because I beat them.”

Halep is set to appeal against her ban to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). 

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