Anett Kontaveit battles past Angelique Kerber in Stuttgart - UBITENNIS
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Anett Kontaveit battles past Angelique Kerber in Stuttgart

Anett Kontaveit battled to victory over Angelique Kerber in Stuttgart.



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The Estonian is into the round of 16 after beating the local German favorite in three tight sets.


Anett Kontaveit is into the round of 16 at the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix after beating the world number 17 and German Angelique Kerber in three sets 3-6, 6-4, 6-4 in two hours and two minutes.

The Estonian hit 37 winners in the match while the German hit 30 unforced errors.

“She played really well and she was aggressive and it was my first match on clay so that’s tricky and I feel I found my game in the second set and felt more comfortable with the serves and got my match going.”

It was indeed the German who got off to a fast start breaking the number five seed to love and managed to turn that break into a double break before the world number 17 got one of those breaks back.

Kerber was able to get one more break of serve at 5-3 to take the first set after a poor service game from the Talinn, Estonia native.

Kontaveit had three cracks in the first game of the second set to break and it was third time lucky as she was able to get the early break and flip the script on the German.

The Estonian had a chance to go up a double break but Bremen native saved all four breakpoints she faced and was able to hold serve. At 3-2 Kerber once again had a chance to break back to go back on serve but was denied by the world number six again.

The number five seed was able to serve out the second set and the match went into a third and deciding set.

The Talinn native continued to push in the beginning of the the third set but the German was able to save all three breakpoints she faced in the opening game and held serve once again.

The number five seed got the first break at 1-1 on her second time of asking and turned that into a double break to take a 4-1 lead but was broken the following game and Kerber got a break of serve back.

At 5-4 Kontaveit served out the match to set up a round of 16 matchup with Ekaterina Alexandrova who she will face on Thursday.

After the match in her post match interview she was asked if she had any issues playing on clay.

I grew up playing on clay in Estonia so I do like playing on clay but we mostly play on hard courts most of the year so it takes some time to get used to it.”

Day 3 results

Another busy day at the Porsche Arena in Stuttgart on Wednesday with the last first round matches being completed and one second round match.

The new world number one Iga Swiatek had no issues getting past the German qualifier Eva Lys 6-1, 6-1 in 62 minutes, the Britt Emma Raducanu also had no trouble beating the Aussie Storm Sanders 6-1, 6-2.

We had the battle of the Czechs as Karolina Pliskova came back from a set down to beat Petra Kvitova 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 in two hours and six minutes.

Day 4 preview

Thursday order of play features some mouth watering matches as players will be battling it out for a spot in the quaterfinals.

The number two seed Paula Badosa will play her first match of the week as she faces the Kazak Elena Rybakina, the Canadian Bianca Andreescu faces another tough test in Aryna Sabalenka.

Emma Raducanu will face the German lucky loser Tamara Korpatsch while the Tunisian Ons Jabeur will face Daria Kasatkina and Pliskova will face Liudmilla Samsonova.


Seb Korda Wins First Match Since Injury At French Open



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After what has been a rollercoaster past few months, Sebastian Korda has returned to the winner’s circle at the French Open. 


The 22-year-old started the year set to become one of the sports rising stars after reaching the final of the Adelaide International and then the quarter-finals of the Australian Open. However, he was forced to retire from his match against Karen Khachanov at Melbourne Park due to a wrist injury that ended up sidelining him from the Tour for weeks.

 “I went two, three months without touching a racquet, basically,” the American said of his injury woes in Paris on Sunday. “I even still had a little bit of pain in Madrid, and then Rome was the first tournament where I kind of had nothing, which was a really big positive for me. Now I have zero pain in my wrist.” 

Finally pain-free, Korda clinched the first win of his comeback at the French Open on Sunday by defeating Mackenzie McDonald 6-4, 7-5, 6-4. The player who knocked Rafael Nadal out of the Australian Open. It was a solid performance from the world No.20 who hit 52 winners and had an average first serve speed of 173 km/h. 

During his recent hiatus, the American used the opportunity to build on his physical development with the help of Jez Green. A highly experienced fitness coach who has previously worked with Andy Murray, Emma Raducanu and Dominic Thiem. 

“It was a tough period for me but a blessing in disguise. I had three, four months to really build the body and set a base that will basically be with me for the rest of my career.” Korda said of his work with Green. “I think that was one of the things I needed most was to kind of get the body right. The tennis I always had. It was just kind of getting the body right and getting ready for these long best-of-five matches to make deep runs.” 

It was at the French Open where Korda had his first major breakthrough. In 2020, when the tournament was held during the autumn due to Covid-19, he reached the fourth round on his debut. 

Korda will play Austria’s Sebastian Ofner in the second round.

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‘A Breath Of Fresh Air’ – Stefanos Tsitsipas’ High Praise For French Open Rival Alcaraz



Carlos Alcaraz’s rapid rise in the sport has left an impression on many, including his recent training partner Stefanos Tsitsipas.


The two top 10 stars held a practice session together at Roland Garros a day before this year’s tournament began. Alcaraz leads Tsitsipas 4-0 in their head-to-head and has only ever dropped three sets against him on the Tour. Whilst they are rivals on the court, there is a lot of admiration between them. This was highlighted by Tsitsipas following his 7-5, 6-3, 4-6, 7-6(7) win over Jiri Vesely in the first round on Sunday. 

“I had a practice session with Carlitos the other day and did throw in a “thank you” just randomly, and I don’t know if he understood that or not. I owe a lot to Carlitos because he’s such a breath of fresh air, the fact that he’s on the tour.” Tsitsipas said during his press conference.
“The fact that he’s so competitive and he’s always with a smile on his face, and almost so much charisma to him and so much positive energy that he distributes. I think that’s contributed a lot to his growth as a tennis player and his consistency too. He seems to be enjoying having fun.”

Despite being four years older than the Spaniard, Tsitsipas admits he has been inspired by his rival to make certain changes to how he approaches the sport. Currently ranked fifth in the world, he is yet to win a trophy this season. Although he finished runner-up at the Australian Open to Novak Djokovic and at the Barcelona Open to Alcaraz. 

“Last year during preseason I was, like, I want to apply that more into my game. Players focus maybe more on technical stuff and stuff that doesn’t focus on these aspects of the game,” he explained.
”I kind of admire him for who he is. I have the capacity of being that person. I truly believe that. That is also the reason that I’m just much more joyful and happy when playing this sport, due to him.”

Besides his high regard for the Spaniard, part of Tsitsipas must be secretly hoping Alcaraz will suffer an early exit in Paris. He is in contention for claiming the No.1 position but can only do so if he wins the title and Alcaraz loses before the third round and Daniil Medvedev loses before the quarter-finals. 

However, to even have a chance of winning his maiden slam Tsitsipas admits he needs to improve his game after saying he was ‘very inconsistent’ throughout his clash with Vesely. He will next play either former champion Stan Wawrinka or Albert Ramos-Vinolas in the second round. 

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Aryna Sabalenka Powers Through French Open Opener



World No.2 Aryna Sabalenka kicked off her French Open bid with a dominant win over Marta Kostyuk in the first round on Sunday.


Sabalenka, who is yet to reach the second week of Roland Garros in her career, overcame an early setback en route to a 6-3, 6-1, victory. The win is her 30th of the season which is more than anybody else on the WTA Tour. Against Kostyuk, Sabalenka fired a total of 18 winners and converted four out of nine break point opportunities. It is the second time she has beaten the Ukrainian after their inaugural meeting at the 2022 Dubai Tennis Championships. 

“I always thought that my first Grand Slam (title) would be at the French Open. I have no idea why because I couldn’t play on the clay but it was on my mind,” the reigning Australian Open champion said during her on-court interview.
“It’s another goal and I am doing everything that I can to bring my best tennis to the court every time.”

It had been widely expected that the match would be a tense encounter given the current political climate. Sabalenak’s country is accused of supporting Russia in its war against Ukraine which is where Kostyuk is from. On Friday the world No.2 said she didn’t expect a handshake to be taking place at the net and has called for politics to be kept outside of sport. A stance that has been criticized by her opponent. 

“Sabalenka might become number one in such a popular sport. Having such a large platform and such a large influence in the world, she refuses it. What kind of message is this for the world?” Kostyuk told BTU 24 hours before their match. 
“We are talking about people being murdered and as a response, we hear that we should leave sport outside of politics. But war does not choose whether you are an athlete or not when it comes to your home.”

However, on Court Philippe Chatrier there was little friction between the two. 20-year-old Kostyuk came into this year’s French Open with a dismal 0-13 record against top-10 opposition on the Tour. However, she was the first to strike in her clash with second seed Sabalenka. After saving two break points during the fourth game, she broke for a 3-2 lead with the help of a delicate drop shot followed by two consecutive errors from her opponent. 

Sabalenka responded instantly by increasing the intensity of her shot-making to once again establish her dominance. A four-game winning streak from the Belarussian enabled her to close out the opening set despite her blip. She secured the 6-3 lead with a clean backhand winner.  

In cruise control, the power of the 25-year-old continued to overwhelm her opponent throughout the second frame. In less than 20 minutes she broke Kostyuk two more times en route to a 4-1 lead. Serving for a place in the second round, Sabalenka battled back from 15-40 down before prevailing on her first match point after hitting a blistering forehand winner.

As expected, Kostyuk refused to shake hands with Sabalenka afterwards and ended up being booed off the court.

“It was a very tough match. It was tough emotionally. At first, I felt that this (the crowd booing) was against me so I was a little surprised but then I felt their support. It’s really important,” said Sabalenka.

It is the 11th time in a row that Sabalenka has won her opening match at a Grand Slam tournament. Besides competing for the trophy, she could also snatch Iga Swiatek’s No.1 ranking and will achieve the milestone if the Pole fails to reach the quarter-finals. 

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