With Carlos Alcaraz Looking Real For A Change, Sinner May Be Ready... - UBITENNIS
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With Carlos Alcaraz Looking Real For A Change, Sinner May Be Ready…



Carlos Alcaraz appeared to be totally puzzled and out of it in last week’s quarterfinals in Toronto against hard-hitting Tommy Paul.

That’s the first time Alcaraz has looked real in a good while. So, maybe it was just a match the young Spaniard didn’t prepare for. He looked beatable from the word go against Paul.

It was Paul that looked like the No. 1 player in the world, although the American is far from being a candidate for the top ladder of the men’s tour.

Paul has a one-dimensional game, all power off the ground and from the service line. Too many errors when he’s facing a player capable of taking the No. 1 ranking for himself such as Jannik Sinner. 


Sinner exposed the now 13th-ranked Paul in the next round in the later stages of both sets, 6-4, 6-4.

Of course, the now sixth-ranked Sinner went on to crush Alex de Minaur by winning eight of the last nine games for a 6-4, 6-1 victory and his first ATP Masters 1000 title. The long-legged Italian seems to be in total control of not just his game, but also his court demeanor and concentration. He appears to have found a new gear in his game.

Sinner’s serves and ground strokes can be lights out. If he can just stay healthy through the U.S. Open, he definitely is capable of shocking the tennis world in New York.

For a player turning just 22 years old on Aug. 16, Sinner is an impressive talent. His ground strokes can be like a bolt of lightning.


Surely Alcaraz will get his act back together in New York, whether he fails to win Cincinnati or not.

Sinner is just another point of concern for Alcaraz or Novak Djokovic as the 6″2′ Italian breaks into the U.S. Open depth chart along with former champion Daniil Medvedev and fourth-ranked Stefanos Tsitsipas.

Tsitsipas is the only one of the Big Four who hasn’t won the U.S. Open. But the sometimes hot-headed Greek reportedly has a new girlfriend, Paula Badosa, to maybe push him a little extra.


On the women’s side, Jessica Pegula’s romp through Montreal also might serve as a warning that the 29-year-old American could be ready to challenge for the top spot in the women’s game.

Pegula’s game can be almost flawless with possibly the best and most consistent ground strokes on the women’s tour. When it came time to get tough against red-hot doubles partner Coco Gauff in the Montreal quarterfinals, Pegula was a picture of consistency to nail down the third set. The semifinals against top-ranked Iga Swiatek went much the same way in the third set.

Pegula is a strong player with total control of her mind and game. She could be tough to beat in New York.

Pegula limited tall Liudimila Samsonova to just one game in the final, even though the Russian had beat the now fourth-ranked Elena Rybakina, in the Montreal semifinals.

Now that it’s Swiatek, Aryna Sabalenka, Pegula and Rybakina in that order at the top of the WTA rankings, it will be a wide-open race for the U.S. Open crown.

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


Jack Draper Wins In Stuttgart, Potentially Faces Andy Murray in Round Two



Jack Draper – ATP Monaco di Baviera 2024 (foto via Twitter @atptour)

Britain’s Jack Draper tight first round win headlined the opening day’s results at the Boss Open 2024 in Stuttgart – and possibly faces a second-round match with Andy Murray who takes on Marcos Giron tomorrow.

Less than 24 hours from the last ball being hit at Roland Garros, the ATP Tour had already switched surfaces onto the grass, and 22-year-old Draper was well tested but ultimately came through in two tie-breakers over Sebastian Ofner.

The sixth seed’s 7-6, 7-6 win contained just one break of serve each, both coming in the second set, as serve dominated proceedings on the faster grass courts in Germany.

While the Austrian won 75% on his first serve, Draper won a whopping 89% behind his first delivery as well as hitting eight aces. These kind of service stats will surely take him far during the grass court season.

“I thought it was a really good match,” Eurosport quoted Draper saying after his match. 
“Both of us played really clean tennis, executing really well.
“When it came down to it, I’m glad I competed really well and got over the line – it’s good to be back on the grass as well.”

There were also wins for Germany’s Yannick Hanfmann who won 6-3, 6-3 over wildcard Henri Squire, while compatriot Dominik Koepfer won in three sets over China’s Zhizhen Zhang 4-6, 7-6, 7-6. 

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Carlos Alcaraz Still Owns A Magical Racket



The legend of Carlos Alcaraz and his magical racket lives on.

The 21-year-old Spaniard executed one magical shot after another with his racket and legs  Sunday afternoon in the French Open final. That bit of magic spelled defeat for Germany’s Alexander Zverev.

This was a final to remember, one of the great matches of all the Grand Slams. It just wasn’t in the cards for the 26-year-old Zverev to finally win a Grand Slam title.


Both players seemed to play a game of “he had it and then he didn’t.”

Alcaraz appeared to have everything under control in the first set, but Zverev rushed through the second set and then made a comeback from 5-2 down in the third set to win five straight games.

Zverev had everything going for him when he started the fourth set with a two-set advantage. It appeared that all the 6-6 Zverev had to do was to continue playing his masterful game of big serves and mighty ground strokes.

But Zverev couldn’t get started in the fourth set until he was down 4-0. So much for a smooth and easy ride to a Grand Slam title. By then, the magic of Alcaraz was heating up.


Zverev still had his chances, even when he fell behind 2-1 in the fifth set. He had to feel pretty good about his chances when he took a triple break point lead against Alcaraz’s serve and appeared ready to even the set at 2-2. Even after Carlos came up with a winner to bring the  game score to double break point.

Zverev still was ready to even the entire match.

That’s when everything seemed to go haywire for the German, while all the while, Alcaraz was able to repeatedly come up with his magical shots as the Spaniard made critical shots that looked almost impossible to make.


Everything for Zverev was lost in the magical racket of Alcaraz.

What was then initially called a game-ending Alcaraz double fault and a 2-2 deadlock quicky reversed itself and Alcaraz stayed alive by winning the next three points while taking a 3-1 advantage.

Zverev did get back to a 3-2 deficit and had a break point in the sixth game, but that was it for the hopes of Zverev. The last two games went rather easily in favor of Alcaraz to wrap up a 6-3, 2-6, 5-7, 6-1, 6-2 victory for Alcaraz.

That moved the Spaniard to a higher level of success on the ATP Tour. He became the youngest man to win Grand Slam titles on all of the different surfaces, clay, grass and hard courts.

Carlos Alcaraz and his magical racket appear to be headed for greatness.

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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Tsitsipas Brothers Hit With Trio Of Fines At French Open



Stefanos Tsitsipas and his brother Petros have been fined more than 20,000 euros for multiple violations of the coaching rules at this year’s French Open. 

The brothers received a financial penalty during three different matches that they played in. Two of those were in the second and third rounds of the men’s doubles tournament. Furthermore, Stefanos was also penalised during his singles quarter-final match against Carlos Alcaraz, which he lost in straight sets. According to French newspaper L’Equipe, all three of those fines were issued as a result of coaching rules being broken.

Ironically, coaching is allowed during matches at the French Open but certain rules must be followed. ‘Verbal’ coaching can only be issued from the coaches and their team if they are sitting in the designated player’s box. Instructions must be limited to a few words and can only be given if the player is in the same half of the court as their coach. Although non-verbal coaching is allowed regardless of what side the player is on. Finally, players can’t start a conversation with their coach unless it is during a medical break, a bathroom break or when their opponent is changing clothes.

However, the Tsitsipas brothers have been found in violation of these rules, which is likely due to their animated father in the stands who is also their coach. Apostolos Tsitsipas has been given coaching violations in the past at other events, including the 2022 Australian Open. 

The value of the fines are €4,600 and €9,200 for the Tsitsipas brothers in the doubles, as well as an additional €7,400 just for Stefanos in the singles. In total, the value of their fines is €21,200. However, the penalty is unlikely to have an impact on the duo whose combined earnings for playing in this year’s French Open amount to roughly €495,000. 

So far in the tournament, the highest single fine to be issued this year was against Terence Atmane who hit a ball out of frustration that struck a fan in the stands. Atmane, who later apologised for his actions, managed to avoid getting disqualified from the match. Instead, he was fined €23,000. 

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