Alex De Minaur Makes Top Ten Debut After Defeating Zverev At United Cup - UBITENNIS
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Alex De Minaur Makes Top Ten Debut After Defeating Zverev At United Cup

Alex De Minaur made his top ten debut after edging out Alexander Zverev in three sets.

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Alex De Minaur will make his top ten debut after defeating Alexander Zverev 5-7 6-3 6-4 at the United Cup.

The Australian came back from a set down as he defeated the world number seven in three sets.

It was a victory that levelled the tie after Angelique Kerber’s win over Ajla Tomljanovic earlier in the day.

After the match De Minaur spoke about the home atmosphere and praised Zverev’s qualities as a competitor, “I love being back home. Thank you guys!” De Minaur told the ATP website.

“I’ve said it before, but every time I step out on court here it feels special. This is my favourite court in the whole world and every time I step out here I get goosebumps. I love being here and I’m very grateful for all the support.

“I hung in there. Sascha is a hell of a competitor. He’s a hell of a player and he was just being too good for me. I managed to get out of jail a little bit in that second set, a couple break points and then I just freed up a little bit and all of a sudden got a couple cheap errors from him late in the second set and all of a sudden the whole momentum changed, the crowd got behind and I just tried to ride the wave.”

Not only did the victory mean levelling the tie for Australia but it meant a major personal milestone for De Minaur as he is into the world’s top ten for the first time in his career.

It was De Minaur’s third consecutive win over a top ten player after beating Taylor Fritz and Novak Djokovic earlier in the week and it now means he is the first Australian since Lleyton Hewitt in 2006 to become a top ten player.

However De Minaur has remained grounded and explained there is more to come in the future, “It’s what I’ve worked so hard for,” De Minaur said after the match.

“It’s another milestone. But the job’s not done. I’m going to enjoy this Aussie summer, that’s for sure.”

Should Australia win the mixed doubles match against Germany then De Minaur will face Hubert Hurkacz in his final match of the week tomorrow.

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Stefanos Tsitsipas beats Karen Khachanov to advance to the semifinal in Monte-Carlo

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Two-time champion Stefanos Tsitsipas beat Karen Khachanov 6-4 6-2 in 83 minutes to reach the semifinal at the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters. Tsitsipas has extended his head-to-head lead against Khachanov to 8-1. 

Tsitsipas will chase his third title in Monte-Carlo after his previous two triumphs in 2021 and 2022. 

Tsitsipas broke Khachanov’s serve in the opening game. Khachanov broke back in the second game to draw level to 1-1. Tsitsipas earned his second break in the third game to take a 2-1 lead and held on his next service games to win his first set 6-4. 

Tsitsipas broke in the fifth game to take a 3-2 lead, as Khachanov sent an easy overhead wide. Tsitsipas earned a double break in the eighth game and served out the win on his second match point in the next game. 

Tsitsipas won 84% of his first service games. The Greek player finished with seven aces and 20 winners to 8 unforced errors. 

Tsitsipas set up a semifinal clash against either Jannik Sinner or Holger Rune.

“I would lie if I said it does not bring good memories stepping out on this court. It’s something that I attribute some of my performances here over time to. I came back here, and I relive those memories of the past. It gives good feelings to me when I am able to play in front of crowds like this and be able to try and strive for excellence with my game”, said Tsitsipas. 

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Iga Swiatek is set to return to the Billie Jean King Cup for the first time since 2022

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Eight Billie Jean King Cup Qualifiers take place from 12 to 13 April. The winners will secure their spot at next November’s season-ending Finals in Seville alongside defending champions Canada, 2023 runners-up Italy, and wild card Czechia. 

World number 1 Iga Swiatek, world number 5 Jessica Pegula, former number 1s Naomi Osaka, Angelique Kerber and Simona Halep, and WTA Tour stars Elina Svitolina, Emma Raducanu, Caroline Garcia and Beatriz Haddad Maia will headline the Billie Jean King Qualifiers. 

The winning teams from the Qualifiers advance to the year-end Finals in Seville. Twelve players will compete in the Finals over six days next November. 

Switzerland vs Poland – Swiss Tennis Arena Biel

World number 1 Iga Swiatek will play for Poland in Billie Jean King Cup for the first time since winning both of her matches in the 2022 Qualifiers. The Polish team will be looking to improve on her five-match winning streak. Swiatek won the WTA Finals in Cancun in 2023 and two WTA 1000 titles in Indian Wells and Doha in 2024. Swiatek has a record of nine wins from her twelve matches in the Billie Jean King matches across singles and doubles. She has won seven of her nine singles matches and has not beaten in Billie Jean King Cup since February 2019.  

Swiatek will play against Simona Waltert in the opening match. Swiatek beat Waltert at Wimbledon Juriors in 2018. 

“I know how she plays a little bit but, tactically, I need to prepare as we have not met on the WTA Tour. It’s never easy to play as a guest because the whole stadium is going to be cheering for Switzerland, but I am ready to do my job. I am going to focus on myself”, said Swiatek. 

Swiatek will be joined by Magdalena Frech, Magda Linette, Katarzyna Kawa and Magdalina Chwalinska. 

Poland will play against 2022 Billie Jean King Cup champions Switzerland for the third time. These teams are tied 1-1 in their two head-to-head clashes. 

A Polish team missing Swiatek did not get through to the 2023 Billie Jean King Finals, as they were beaten by a Kazakh team led by Elena Rybakina. Poland were given a wild card into the 2023 Billie Jean Cup Finals in Seville, but they failed to win a match. 

The Swiss team will be looking to repeat their previous triumph in Glasgow in 2022. Swiss team captain Heinz Guenthardt has named Viktorija Golubic, Celine Naef, Simona Waltert and Jil Teichmann. Belinda Bencic has taken one year off from tennis as she waits to welcome her first child. 

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Defending Champion Andrey Rublev Suffers Shock Defeat To Popyrin In Monte-Carlo

Andrey Rublev suffered his third consecutive defeat after failing to defend his Monte-Carlo title.

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Defending champion Andrey Rublev has suffered a shock opening round defeat against Alexei Popyrin in Monte-Carlo.

The world number six suffered a 6-4 6-4 defeat in one hour and 40 minutes against the aggressive Australian.

It’s Rublev’s third consecutive defeat with the 26 year-old only winning one match since his disqualification in Dubai against Alexander Bublik.

However it was a landmark win for Popyrin as he looks to be seeded for Roland Garros with the Australian currently at 46 in the world.

Speaking after the match Popyrin detailed his game-plan to defeating the defending champion, “I enjoyed coming out on centre court for the first time. First tournament on clay of the year and I have good memories from clay last year,” Popyrin told the ATP website.

“I am feeling really comfortable on it and happy to beat a guy who was in form, confident and the defending champ. It was an awesome match.

“The idea was not to give him the same ball. He is probably the best player from the baseline when you give him rhythm, so I tried to change the pace, height and spin and I think it worked really well for me today.”

Should results go against Rublev this week than he could drop to outside the world’s top ten.

As for Popyrin, he will now face compatriot Alex De Minaur in the third round.

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