Felix Auger Aliassime wins five set marathon over Bautista Agut - UBITENNIS
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Felix Auger Aliassime wins five set marathon over Bautista Agut

Felix Auger-Aliassime is into the last 16 of a grand slam for the fourth time in his last six appearances.



Felix Auger-Aliassime (@TeamCanada - Twitter)

The Canadian pulled off a five-set win over his Spanish opponent in a match that went the distance.

Felix Auger Aliassime is into the fourth round of the US Open after surviving a five-set win over the 18 seed Roberto Bautista Agut 6-3, 6-4, 4-6, 3-6, 6-3 in a match that lasted three hours and 55 minutes.

The Canadian hit 77 winners and served 27 aces on a packed Louis Armstrong Stadium in front of a lot of loud Canadian fans.

“It was not easy and very tricky and I had to forget losing the third set and it was really frustrating because I felt like I was dominating the match and controlling the match and things turned around quickly and he started gaining confidence and he started being more solid than he was and I wasn’t serving as good so for the fifth set I told myself this it all or nothing and it paid off.”

The number 12 seed got off to a very good start to the match getting the first break to take a 3-1 lead and that one break was enough for him to serve out the first set and draw first blood.

The second set was more competitive with the Canadian pushing for the break but the Spaniard wasn’t going down without a fight and saved breakpoints early in the second set.

At 4-4, the world number 15 finally got the breakthrough getting a breakpoint and breaking serve with a massive forehand winner, and went on to serve out the second set.

The Montreal native kept the momentum going into the third set and got the early break to take a 2-1 lead this time with a return winner that caught the world number 21 off guard.

Unfortunately, the Canadian wasn’t able to consolidate the break and the Spaniard broke right back the following game and it stayed on serve until 5-4 and this time it was the 33-year-old who broke to take the third set.

The number 12 seed continued to push getting chances to break once again early in the fourth set but failed to convert and at 4-3, it was the Spaniard who got the crucial break and saved five break points before sealing the set.

The fifth and final set was a battle royale with the first three games going with serve before the Canadian had two chances to break but only needed one to take an early 3-1 lead.

At 4-2, the world number 15 saved three break points before holding serve, and at 5-3 was able to serve out the match.

After the match in his post-match on-court interview, Auger Aliassime was asked about the Australian Open when he was up two sets on Aslan Karatsev and ended up losing the match in five if he took anything or learned anything from that match.

“You know what happened in Australia happened against Zverev in Wimbledon also being up two sets to love but I managed to win that fifth set so I think remembering that match was good for me and it was good for my confidence and I think today I was just trying to stay focused and trying to stay calm but you never know because things could have gone either way and I am happy it went my way today.”

Auger Aliassime will now face Frances Tiafoe in the fourth round after the American beat the Russian Andrey Rublev in five sets in the last match on Arthur Ashe Stadium.

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Maria Sakkari Appoints Witt As Coach For American Swing



Maria Sakkari - WTA Washington 2023 (foto Twitter @mubadalacitidc)

Maria Sakkari has enlisted the help of Jessica Pegula’s former long-time coach in a bid to regain her form on the Tour. 

Greek media has confirmed that the world No.9 has begun a partnership with David Witt, who has also previously coached Venus Williams. Witt had worked with Pegula since 2019 before the tennis star decided to end their collaboration earlier this year. During their time together he oversaw the American win two WTA 1000 events, reached the quarter-final of a grand Slam on six occasions and peaked at a ranking high of No.3. 

Sakkari’s appointment comes after she ended her six-year working relationship with Tom Hill. Highlights of their partnership include winning two Tour titles, reaching a Grand Slam semi-final twice and spending more than two years in the top 10. 

“Tom, thank you for all the emotions, the support on and off the court, and the belief you had in me since day one,” Sakkari wrote on Instagram last month. “We grew together, and you helped me realize that everything is possible.

“Not only did you make me a better tennis player, but you also made me a better person. Thank you for always wanting the best for me and for always having my back! Good luck on the next chapter in your career.”

Sakkari is looking to get back on track after what has been a disappointing start to 2024. She had won just two matches in her first four singles tournaments played and is yet to face an opponent ranked in the world’s top 20. However, she faired better at the United Cup, where she won three matches in the team event, including victories over Lelylah Fernandez and Angelique Kerber. 

It is understood that Sakkari will be working with Witt at both Indian Wells and Miami. If their partnership is successful, it could be extended further into the clay swing. The other members of her team will remain in the same roles. 

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Ugo Humbert saves three match points to beat Hubert Hurkacz in Dubai



Fifth-seed Ugo Humbert came back from one set down to beat Hubert Hurkacz 3-6 7-6 (10-8) 6-3. Humbert had beaten Hurkacz en route to his title in Marseille. 

Hurkacz converted his third break point in the fourth game to win the first set 6-3. Humbert saved three match points in the tie-break of the second set before converting his first set point to force the match to the decider. Humbert broke twice to seal the third set 6-3. 

“It was a great battle. I tried to battle for every point. In the tie-break I saved three match points, tried to do my best and thanks to those French fans for the amazing support”, said Humbert. 

Humbert set up a semifinal match against Danil Medvedev, who beats Alejandro Davidovich Fokina 6-2 6-3. Humbert leads 2-1 in their head-to-head matches, but Medvedev won their most recent match in three sets at the China Open in their most recent head-to-head match in Beijing last year.

“It’s going to be a great challenge against Danil tomorrow. We had a few great fights. Hopefully I will recover well to be ready for this match”, said Humbert. 

Aleksander Bublik was leading Jiri Lehecka 6-4 4-1 when the Czech player was forced to retire due to an injury. Bublik set up a match against Andrey Rublev, who was leading Sebastian Korda 6-4 4-3  when the Czech player withdrew due to injury. 

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Brazilian Rising Star Joao Fonseca Waives College Eligibility To Turn Pro



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

One of Brazil’s most promising young tennis players has made the bold decision to abandon a dream of his to play college tennis in America to turn pro. 

17-year-old Jaoao Fonseca was committed to playing college tennis at the University of Virginia but says professional tennis has called him in a way he couldn’t refuse. The rising star has played just two Tour-level events so far in his career and is currently ranked 343rd in the world. 

At last week’s Rio Open, he became the second-youngest player after Alexander Zverev to reach the quarter-finals of an ATP 500 event since the category was introduced. In his home tournament, the Brazillian beat Arthur Fils and Cristian Garin before losing to Mariano Navone.

“It was an incredibly tough decision for me and my family as I have been dreaming about living a college life in Charlottesville, playing the sport that l love with a wonderful team and coach, but, in the last months, professional tennis called me in a way that I simply couldn’t say no,” Fonseca wrote in a statement published on Instagram
“Although I will not be attending school, I think it is an extremely valuable and viable path for young players in their way to professional careers,” he added.

Fonseca has already enjoyed success on the junior circuit. Last year he was runner-up in the doubles tournament at the Australian Open boy’s event. Then at the US Open, he won his first Grand Slam junior title in singles. He is also a former ITF Junior World No.1 and is currently ranked second in the standings. 

The youngster has already been hailed by compatriot Beatriz Haddad Maia, who is currently ranked 13th on the WTA Tour. Speaking to reporters at the San Diego Open, she has offered her support to Fonseca if he needs it. 

“João is a nice person. He has a great future, if he keeps working hard and keeps doing what he’s doing. I think he has a very aggressive mentality and tennis.” She said.

“We sometimes text each other, but not that much. But I’m always following.. not only him.. but the Brazilians. I’m proud of what he’s doing. He has a long way and he needs to understand that it’s a marathon, it’s not a 100 meter race.’
“Tennis has its ups and downs. I wish him all the best, for sure. I’ll be here whenever he wants. I’m happy with what he’s doing.” 

Fonseca played at the Chile Open this week but lost in the first round to Thiago Agustin Tirante.

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