Miami Open Daily Preview: Casper Ruud Plays Carlos Alcaraz in the Men’s Final - UBITENNIS
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Miami Open Daily Preview: Casper Ruud Plays Carlos Alcaraz in the Men’s Final



Carlos Alcaraz on Friday evening in Miami (

On Sunday in Miami, either Casper Ruud or Carlos Alcaraz will win the biggest title of their career.  Both men initially rose through the rankings based on clay court results, but both have now proven to be formidable forces on hard courts as well.


23-year-old Casper Ruud has achieved three Masters 1000 semifinals on clay, and six of his seven career titles also came on that surface. The Norwegian arrived in Miami with a 1-8 record against top 10 opposition on hard courts, yet earned an impressive three-set victory over Sascha Zverev in the quarterfinals.  All his other victories at this event have been decisive straight-setters.  Ruud will reach a new career-high of No.7 in the world regardless of Sunday’s result.

18-year-old Carlos Alcaraz won an ATP 250 title last July, an ATP 500 title in February, and may now add a Masters 1000 title to his collection.  But his real breakthrough occurred as last summer’s US Open, when he electrified audiences with his run to the quarterfinals, highlighted by an upset of Stefanos Tsitsipas in a fifth-set tiebreak.  He repeated that feat by defeating Tsitsipas again at this tournament, and has now claimed 22 of his last 24 matches.  Alcaraz has already guaranteed himself a top 12 debut come Monday, and would move up to No.11 with a win on Sunday.

Also on Sunday, the women’s doubles championship will be decided, as the top seeds face the 2020 US Open champions.

Casper Ruud (6) vs. Carlos Alcaraz (14) – 1:00pm on Stadium Court

Their only previous encounter occurred last April on clay in Marbella, with Alcaraz prevailing 6-2, 6-4.  Back then, Carlos was a wild card ranked 133rd in the world.  12 months later, he’s improved his ranking by more than 100 spots.  His only two losses this season have been a fifth-set tiebreak heartbreaker to Matteo Berrettini, and an over three-hour three-setter at the hands of his idol, Rafael Nadal.  Neither of those are losses to be ashamed of.

Casper Ruud’s results on hard courts have progressed significantly.  He was 16-27 on the surface prior to 2021, but is now 36-13 since.  His forehand has been a tremendous weapon this fortnight,  and his first serve percentage has increased significantly this season.  And notably, Casper is 6-0 in his last six finals.

However, it’s been a long time since any young male player has been as impressive as Carlos Alcaraz.  His speed, power, perseverance, composure, and high tennis IQ make for an intimidating package.  And against an opponent who is also into new territory on Sunday in a Masters 1000 final, Alcaraz should be favored to win his first of many titles at this level.

Veronika Kudermetova and Elise Mertens (1) vs. Laura Siegemund and Vera Zvonareva – Not Before 3:00pm on Stadium Court

Both teams are vying for the their second title of the season.  This is the first time these teams have met. Kudermetova and Mertens have survived three consecutive third-set 10-point tiebreaks, while Siegemund and Zvonareva claimed one in the semifinals by a score of 13-11.

Sunday’s full Order of Play is here.


(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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Novak Djokovic To Skip Shanghai Masters



The penultimate Masters 1000 event of 2023 will take place without the world’s top-ranked player. 


Novak Djokovic has confirmed his withdrawal from the tournament which will get underway on October 2nd. In a social media post, the Serbian said he would miss seeing his fans in China but didn’t specify his reason for not playing. It is believed that his decision to do so is due to what has been a hectic past few weeks on the Tour. 

Since mid-August Djokovic won the Cincinnati Masters before going on to claim a historic 24th Grand Slam title at the US Open. Less than a week after triumphing in New York, he travelled to Spain for his country’s Davis Cup group matches. At the Davis Cup, he won his singles match against Alejandro Davidovich Fokina during Serbia’s clash with Spain. However, the following day Djokovic and doubles partner Nikola Cacic lost their match against the Czech Republic. 

“Over the years, some of the best support I receive anywhere in the world is in China. Shanghai has always been one of my favourite tournaments in the season,” he wrote on Twitter. “I will be missing my #NoleFam in China. I hope that I can come back to China in the future and play in front of all of you again.”

The Shanghai Masters is taking place for the first time since 2019 after the past three editions were cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Djokovic has won the event a record four times so far in his career. The only other players to have won Shanghai on multiple occasions are Andy Murray and Roger Federer. 

Djokovic has not commented on when he will next play but he will likely be participating at the Paris Masters next month which takes place just before the ATP Finals in Turin. So far this season, he has won 45 out of 50 matches played, earned more than $10.5M in prize money and claimed five Tour titles with three of those being at Grand Slam events. 

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