World No.1 Iga Swiatek 'Disappointed’ With Mauresmo’s View On Women’s Matches At French Open - UBITENNIS
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World No.1 Iga Swiatek ‘Disappointed’ With Mauresmo’s View On Women’s Matches At French Open

Mauresmo, who was appointed tournament director earlier this year, has caused controversy by suggesting that women’s matches are less appealing.

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Iga Swiatek said she was surprised by the comments made by French Open tournament director Amelie Mauresmo over the reason why most of the night matches have involved men.

Mauresmo, who is a former world No.1 herself and Grand Slam champion, told reporters in Paris on Wednesday morning that she believes men’s matches are more appealing compared to the women. Her remarks comes after eight out of the nine night-time slots were filled with men’s matches. The only exception was the clash between Alize Cornet and Jelena Ostapenko. Amazon Prime France has a key influence on who plays during that time as they hold the exclusive broadcasting rights.

“In this era that we are in right now, and as a woman, a former woman’s player, I don’t feel bad or unfair saying you have more attraction, more attractivity — can you say that? Appeal? — for the men’s matches,” said Mauresmo, who is the first female tournament director in French Open history.
“My goal when I was doing the schedule every day was to try and see a match in the women’s draw can I put there.
“Honestly, it was tough. It was tough for more than one night to find the match of the day.”

The French Open night sessions were first introduced last year as part of the Amazon deal. Rafael Nadal’s four-set win over Novak Djokovic concluded at 1:15am. Just short of the all-time record set last year at 1:26am.

Another notable factor in this year’s Grand Slam has been that 18 out of 20 singles matches scheduled first on Court Philippe Chatrier and Court Suzanne Lenglen have been women’s ties.

Following her quarter-final win over Jessica Pegula on Wednesday afternoon, Swiatek became the first player top name to give her reaction to Mauresmo’s remarks. Branding them as disappointing but she admits she rather play earlier in the day. Both Nadal and Djokovic agreed in their press conferences on Wednesday morning that starting a best-of-five match at 9pm local time is too late.

“It is a little bit disappointing and surprising because she was also in the WTA,” Swiatek said of the French Open chief. “The thing is, from my point of view, for every player it’s more convenient to play at normal hour but for sure I want to entertain and I also want to show my best tennis on every match.”
“I’m always focused the same way when I’m going out (on court). It doesn’t matter if it’s a day session or night session. But it (Mauresmo’s comments) is a little bit disappointing.”
“It’s always their decision and we kind of have to accept that. But I want my tennis to be entertaining as well and I always said that at my toughest moments I always remember that I also play for people.”

It is difficult to compare the exact appeal of men’s and women’s tennis among TV audiences due to various variables. For example the 2020 French Open saw the men’s final attract an average of 3.77M on France Télévisions compared to 1.8M for the women’s final. During that year Rafael Nadal won an historic 13th title and Swiatek won her first.

I think it’s kind of a personal opinion of every person if they like men’s tennis or women’s tennis more or if they like them equally, but I think women’s tennis has a lot of advantages,” Swiatek continued. “Some may say that this it’s unpredictable and girls are not consistent. But on the other hand it may also be something that is really appealing and it may really attract more people. So it depends on the personal views of some people.”

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Hubert Hurkacz Undergoes ‘Knee Procedure’ Ahead of Olympic Bid

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Poland’s top player on the ATP Tour is not giving up on his dream of winning a medal at the Olympic Games despite recently undergoing a medical procedure.

World No.7 Hubert Hurkacz suffered a knee injury during his second round clash at Wimbledon against France’s Arthur Fils. In the fourth set tiebreak of their clash, Hurkacz dived for a shot but landed badly on his knee and required on-court medical attention. He then played two more points before retiring from the match. 

In a social media post published on Wednesday, the  27-year-old confirmed he underwent a procedure on his knee earlier this week but didn’t provide any further details.  Although Hurkacz has stated his intention to play at the upcoming Olympic Games in Paris, where the tennis event will be held on the clay at Roland Garros. 

“I had a knee procedure this Monday, but I’m feeling better already and my team and are dedicating extensive time each day to the rehab process.” He wrote on Instagram. 

“It’s a dream for every athlete to represent their country at the Olympics, and I want to make sure I am fully fit and ready before making the final decision to step on court. The aim is not only to participate, but to win a medal for my country.”

So far this season Hurkacz has won 34 out of 48 matches played on the Tour. He won the Estoril Open in April and was runner-up to Jannik Sinner in Halle. 

The Olympic tennis event is scheduled to begin a week Saturday on July 27th. Poland is yet to win a medal in the event but expectations are high with women’s No.1 Iga Swiatek also taking part. 

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Krejcikova Comes Alive With Her Serve To Win 12th Grand Slam Title At Wimbledon

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image via x.com/wimbledon

It must have seemed like the whole world was against her when Barbora Krejcikova served for the match for a third time against crowd favorite Jasmine Paolini.

But Krejcikova was only going for her 12th Grand Slam title. She was well prepared.

So, she released her patented way-out-wide serve to the smallish Paolini’s backhand, and the best the Italian could do was get her racket on the ball enough to return the serve far off the court, long and wide.

ARMS UP FOR A CHAMPION

The weight of the world was gone as Krejcikova threw her arms over her head and calmly walked to the net to greet the Wimbledon runner-up.

Now, Krejcikova was half-way home to a career Grand Slam in singles. She already owns a career Grand Slam in doubles among her dozen Grand Slam titles that also include one mixed doubles Grand Slam title.

She has won the hard ones, the French Open on clay and Wimbledon on grass.

At 28 years old, anything must look possible to this 5-10 Czech.

KREJCIKOVA COMES THROUGH UNDER PRESSURE

Paolini simply was out played in a second straight Grand Slam final, on clay and on grass. Now she faces the real tests, two straight Grand Slam tournaments on hard surfaces that might not be overly friendly to the 5-4 Paolini.

But there it was, a 6-2, 2-6, 6-4 victory for Krejcikova on Wimbledon’s famed Center Court.

After what might be called a throw-away second set for Krejcikova, she came alive in the third set, pinning Paolini to the deep corners while nailing low hard-hit balls to both corners.

Krejcikova got off to 40-0 starts on her first four service games of the decisive set and ended all four with service winners to take a 5-3 lead (with the aid of the only service break of the third set). She yielded only one point in those four service games, a double fault at 40-0 that was followed by an ace.

Of course, it was the serve again that saved the day for Krejcikova and gave her set points two and three, then sealed the deal for a spot in Wimbledon history.

James Beck was the 2003 winner of the USTA National Media Award  for print media. A 1995 MBA graduate of The Citadel, he can be reached at Jamesbecktennis@gmail.com. 

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Jasmine Paolini’s Wimbledon Run Hailed By Italian Prime Minister

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Image via x.com/twitter

The Prime Minister of Italy has praised Jasmine Paolini for lighting up the hearts of others during her Wimbledon run. 

Paolini missed out on her first Grand Slam title to Barbora Krejcikova, who prevailed in three sets to capture her second major trophy. Despite her defeat, she has made history at the tournament by becoming the first female player from her country to reach the final. Until this year, she had never won a Tour-level main draw match on the grass. 

Whilst disappointed about missing out on the biggest title of her career, Italian Premier Giorgia Meloni posted a tribute to Paolini on social media just moments after the final had concluded.

“Proud of Jasmine Paolini,” The Agenzia Nazionale Stampa Associata (ANSA) quotes Meloni as saying. 

“The first Italian tennis player to reach the final of the prestigious Wimbledon tournament. 

“Despite the defeat, you lit up the hearts of the Italian people, succeeding in conveying grit and passion to all of us who supported you”. 

Paolini is the first player ranked outside the top five to reach the final of both Wimbledon and the French Open within the same year since the ranking system was introduced in 1975. She is also only the fourth female player in the Open Era to have reached her first two Grand Slam finals in the same year at Roland Garros and Wimbledon after Chris Evert (1973), Olga Morozova (1974) and Steffi Graf (1987). 

Should she win three or more matches at the US Open later this year, she will also set a new Open Era record for the most Grand Slam wins achieved by an Italian female player in a single season. 

“The last two months have been crazy for me. I want to thank my team, and my family. They always support me and I wouldn’t be here without them. The crowd have been amazing. I received a lot of support. Just incredible to feel the love from them, I enjoy it so much.” Paolini said following her Wimbledon defeat. 

The 28-year-old will rise to a ranking high of No.3 on Monday. 

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