Category: Tennis Events

Laver Cup Exceeds Expectations

A couple of years ago Roger Federer had an idea which would be referred to as the Laver Cup. The vision entailed a tennis festival, an event where the legends of the sport are honoured, and the upcoming generation is inspired. It had to be fun for those who competed and those who attended. Today we know this vision became a reality which exceeded his expectation. 20-22 September is when the third edition of this event is taking place in Geneva, home turf to Federer himself.

Within a short period of only three years, the Laver Cup became extremely popular. During the first edition which took place in 2017 in Prague and the second in 2018 in Chicago, the event showed itself as an absolute hit on the tennis calendar. In such a degree that this year the ATP decided to let go of their antagonistic attitude towards the tournament and finally recognize it as one of the official world tournaments. The event will however not influence the ATP rankings, due to various tour rules which prevent ranking happening at the tournament. Chris Kermode, the CEO of ATP, expressed their excitement over the event. He mentioned that the players had contributed passionately, and the tennis fans of the world responded with sold-out events.

The Structure of the Laver Cup

The cup is named after Rod Laver, a living legend in the world of tennis. The tournament exists out of two teams competing against each other. The team representing Europe is named after German tennis legend, Bjorn Borg and the opposing team, Team World is named after the former bad boy in tennis history, John McEnroe. The core of Federer’s vision was to deliver a fun event for tennis fans globally which give honour to legends who made history in the game. The immediate appeal which it had from the crowds was, however, exceeding his own expectations. The Laver Cup is being played indoors in many significant areas. The venues resemble those which are used for WWE or even rock concerts. These are chosen specifically to attract the attention of younger interest.

Staring the Best

Even though the tournament is scheduled shortly after the US Open, Federer managed to get a brilliant lineup for the weekend tennis extravaganza. Winner of the US Open, Rafael Nadal and good friend to Federer, is one of the great stars showcasing his talent over the weekend. Nadal’s loyalty to both his good friend and the Laver Cup is represented in the fact that this tennis superstar announced shortly after taking victory in the US Open, that he will need to rest, to let the tendinitis in his knees heal. He said that his schedule for the remainder of the year would have to be delayed for a couple of days, but the one event which he will most definitely be present at is the Laver Cup.

Main, Tennis Events

Kyrgios Wins His Sixth Title

This has been a great week in the life of Nick Kyrgios. He had to describe it as one of his favourite weeks. The 24year-old Kyrgios won Daniil Medvedev with straight sets of 7-6 (8-6) 7-6 (7-4) while delivering a very entertaining final game.

Nick Kyrgios

The Australian born Kyrgios has been playing in eight ATP finals and secured his sixth title win this week. He is currently the highest-rated Australian tennis player on the ATP ranks. During his career, his professionalism as the player has been a couple of times in question though. Only last month during Wimbledon, Kyrgios was hitting the spotlight for being seen in a pub the night before playing Rafael Nadal. It often seemed in the past like he was giving up on matches.

This might have changed now, and we can only hope that when Kyrgios stated that he decided to make a change, which this time around it will last. He also expressed his appreciation for the fact that even during a time when he didn’t have faith in himself anymore, there were still those who had faith in him and kept on supporting him.

Always Keeping the Crowds Intrigued

Kyrgios has a very naughty side when on the court, and that makes his games very entertaining to the crowds. During this week of play they were often asked on suggestions where to serve, handing out fist pumps or quietly singing along with songs, Kyrgios has fun on the court, and he has a way of keeping the crowd captivated. What this week showed us again is that when Kyrgios focus on the game and set out to win, he can be unbeatable. He has in the past been able to beat players much stronger than his competitors during this week in the US, but will he now finally stop faffing around and focus on his game and his impeccable talent?

Complex History of Wins and Losses

Over the years, he has shown us that when he wants to win, he can be undefeated, but his emotions are always seeming to get the better part of him. Kyrgios struggle to play a motivated game when he is competing against lower-ranked players, leaving him often losing against them. When he is motivated, he defeats much stronger opponents like during the Mexican Open earlier this year. After going through a terrible run during the Delray Beach Open in February, he arrived at the Mexican Open with renewed focus. He managed to defeat Stan Wawrinka, Rafael Nadal, John Isner and Alexander Zverev and ended up winning the title. It is clear that when he is happy in life, he is a winner, but too often his emotions are having an unfortunate effect on his performance, and that is what is robbing him of becoming the best he can be on the court.

Tennis Events

What We Learned This Year at Wimbledon

Roger Federer was one swing of his tennis racket away from becoming a Wimbledon champion on two occasions during the final. However, Novak Djokovic managed to outperform him both times. What’s truly impressive about this match is that a 21st Grand Slam title for Roger Federer might have placed the record out of reach for both Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic who is currently chasing the paper at the moment. However, Djokovic’s victory will undoubtedly supercharge him now to claim more Grand Slam events.

The Battle for GOAT

Novak Djokovic currently has 16 Grand Slam titles, while Rafael Nadal impresses with 18 Grand Slam titles. Given the superiority from Nadal at the French Open, where the tennis star already has a total of 12 medals, it’s not difficult to imagine that he can easily win two more medals at Roland Garros, regardless of who is in front of him. However, Djokovic is not only younger than Nadal but also a more rounded player, making him equally dangerous on any surface imaginable. However, here is the kicker: Novak Djokovic already leads against both men, 28-26 against Nadal and 26-22 against Federer.

With everything else being equal, Novak Djokovic should be able to maintain his superiority going forward. Roger Federer is 37 years old at the moment, while Nadal is extremely injury-prone and doesn’t have any notable titles outside of Paris since he claimed victory in 2017 at the U.S Open. Roger Federer looked like he had the GOAT in the bag after claiming the Australian Open in 2018. However, Djokovic might be able to dominate the sport by claiming more notable titles. Does this concern Roger Federer at all?

Roger Federer recently stated that the chase for the record is in a completely different place at the moment. Federer takes motivation from a unique place which has nothing to do with claiming titles. He is not interested in keeping the record as he already managed to break it first. The document will be broken eventually, as with all things. Roger also stated that he didn’t become a tennis player for holding records or claiming the most Grand Slam titles.

Serena’s Last Stand

How many more opportunities will Serena Williams have going forward? This is a question that is currently on everyone’s lips after the unexpected women’s final where Simona Help defeated Serena Williams to become the newest Wimbledon champion. It’s a good question, especially when you consider than Williams is turning 38 in September. She hasn’t been able to win a tournament since the Australian Open in 2017 and ultimately faltered during Wimbledon even though she was fit and healthy.

Most believe that Williams needs s to stop participating in activities where she is a celebrity and spokesperson and play in more events to adequately prepare for majors. However, this is something that Serena Williams is not interested in, allowing her rivals to gain more confidence when they face her. The last opportunity for her will be the U.S Open in 2019.

Tennis Events

Djokovic Defeats Federer in Glorious Wimbledon Final

Novak Djokovic managed to outlast Roger Federer in a genuinely astonishing five-set battle on Sunday, claiming victory during the very first fifth-set tiebreaker in a men’s final at Wimbledon to once again become the men’s champion and win his fifth Grand Slam title at the All England Club. The fifth-set tiebreaker was also considered the first in any final of the men’s tournament at all four Grand Slam tournaments.

Djokovic Defeats Federer in Epic Final

Novak Djokovic as the top-seeded player managed to defeat Roger Federer to remain undefeated against the Swiss who was second-seeded in a total of three final matchups at Wimbledon. Novak Djokovic also managed to claim victory in 2014 and in 2015 where he defended the championship for the very first time. Novak Djokovic managed to win his first title at Wimbledon in 2011.

At 4 hours and 57 minutes, this match was regarded as the longest final in the history of Wimbledon which featured 35 aces, 68 games, and a total of 422 points, including 204 points for Djokovic and 218 points for Federer. Unfortunately, in these kinds of games, there has to be a loser.

Novak Djokovic managed to save w match points to eventually reach the fifth-set tiebreaker where he became the first player since 1948 to successfully save championship points during a final to go on and win it. Djokovic stated that he was overjoyed and thrilled to be considered the winner of this never-ending match. He also noted that the game could have gone either way as Federer was serving phenomenally throughout the game.

Roger Federer’s Mistakes

Roger Federer was the first player to fall behind and make a comeback. He trailed by a set on two occasions. However, he did come extremely close to claiming victory in the final in the third. Roger Federer was only two points away from grabbing the first set on a total of 7 occasions. However, he wasn’t able to do it. He was also 1 point away from claiming the third, but once again fell short.

Then Roger Federer found himself down a break early on during the fifth set. After it seemed like he gained the upper hand, with only 1 point away from winning while he was serving for the win, he fell short yet again.

He managed to send a forehand quite wide during the first championship point, while Djokovic managed to produce a crosscourt forehand to win the next. Before too long, Djokovic had managed to make a significant comeback to continue playing for an additional 45 minutes. The crowd supported Federer far more than Djokovic and Novak stated that is was truly difficult to ignore.

Federer wanted to claim his 21st Grand Slam title, while Djokovic managed to claim his 16th Grand Slam title at Wimbledon. This allowed Djokovic to move four titles closer to Federer’s record 20 Grand Slam titles and two titles closer to Nadal’s 18 titles.

Tennis Events

Osaka Struggles to Find Answers Off and On Court

Moments after she was defeated at Wimbledon during the first round, Naomi Osaka found herself in front of a jam-packed room filled with reporters from across the globe, answering as many questions as possible. During her Q&A, she spoke very softly and tried her best to hold back the tears that surfaced from the moment she sat down.

After a couple of minutes that looked like sheer agony, Naomi Osaka decided to interrupt a question regarding the pressures of her brand-new fame and asked her moderator if she could leave as she was about to burst out in tears. After that, she stood up and walked out of the room while an uncomfortable silence spread across the floor that created even more questions among reporters.

The Life of a Tennis Athlete

The career and life of a professional athlete in tennis is filled with lows and highs. However, perhaps no one has managed to exemplify it more extremely than Naomi Osaka in the last 12 months. She managed to defeat Serena Williams in a truly controversial game to claim her very first Grand Slam title during the U.S Open early in September and dominated the Australian Open to reach the world’s number 1 ranking in January. To many, it looked like the future of tennis finally arrived, complete with a quirky sense of humour and a bouncy ponytail, and she was instantly seen everywhere you look. The magazine covers kept pouring in, as did endorsements and television appearances.

However, it soon became apparent that not everything was perfect in the world of Naomi Osaka. She decided to fire Sascha Bajin, her incredible tennis coach, only weeks following her victory in Melbourne, and only provided reporters with vague comments regarding her decision to fire the coach in search of happiness. Since this occurred, the tennis star has struggled on the court where she only managed to advance once in April to a semi-final, while falling short during the French Open in the third round. This marked the earliest exit by a female in her first major as a top-ranked tennis player since 2008 with Ana Ivanovic.

Defeat at Wimbledon

When you consider the discussions of a Naomi Slam after her second consecutive victory in Australia, her unexpected loss on the very first day feels quite tricky. Osaka managed to before only the 4th female in the history of the Open Era to lose in an opening match during Wimbledon while she was ranked as the top seed.

Naomi Osaka played against Yulia Putintseva, regarded as a two-time quarterfinalist in the French Open who is ranked number 39 in the world, on centre court and started strong as the managed to take a 3-1 lead. However, she went on to lose a set after a difficult tie-break. Putintseva managed to win both their previous meetings and at Wimbledon, Osaka looked clueless on several occasions, accumulating over 30 unforced errors during the match.

How Canada is Transforming into a Tennis Power

It was a magical moment that will live on forever in the world of tennis when Canada transformed into a global power.

Canadian Tennis Stars On The Rise

Bianca Andreescu from Toronto, who was only 18 at the time, managed to become the only entry via wild-card to claim victory at the Indian Wells in a singles tournament, making her the first player from Canada to win one of the mandatory events at the WTA. Fourteen days later, Felix Auger-Aliassime, who was 18 at the time, and Denis Shapovalov, who was 19 at the time, managed to smash their way to the semi-finals of the Miami Open.

The all-Canadian final never took place due to Roger Federer taking out Shapovalov, while John Isner eliminated Felix Auger-Aliassime. However, by then, the transformation of Canada made a significant impact on the world of tennis, especially on the international arena, and the country was on everyone’s lips as we headed into spring.

Felix Auger-Aliassime stated that it is phenomenal what was happening at Miami in terms of Canadian tennis players. Canada was pleased with the results, and the comments about the country are refreshing to hear. He also stated that a lot of belief is placed on Canada when it comes to tennis as well as the tennis players in general.

However, belief is rather difficult to back up as the young players in Canada soon realized. Bianca Andreescu has only played one match since she decided to pull out from the Miami Open due to a right shoulder injury. Felix Auger-Aliassime and Shapovalov took a hard knock on clay where Felix Auger-Aliassime eventually came to life during the final day in Lyon, a rather modest tournament that occurs right before the French Open. Felix Auger-Aliassime was unavailable for the French Open due to a groin injury, but he did state that he would be available for Wimbledon.

So Why is Canada Performing Now?

Hatem McDadi recently stated that there’s a considerable hockey culture in the country and therefore the country had to create and develop their own tennis culture from scratch. During the early 2000s, McDadi was the director of player development in the country for Tennis Canada, and an effort was created to improve the country’s tennis fortunes. Now, McDadi is the senior vice president of Tennis Canada in the development department. The organization initially created a foundation with designed programs and hired world-class tennis coaches to assist in creating a pathway to success.

Some of the tennis coaches included Bob Brett who mentored Goran Ivanisevic and Boris Becker, Louis Borfiga who is well respected in France due to his training program, and plenty of other elite tennis coaches to assist in the transformation. McDadi also approached parents and enrolled their children from the age of 4 into various sports to build experience from a very young age. This ensured that athletes in Canada improved over time, and it’s undoubtedly showing now.

The Coolest Tennis Courts from Around the World

Tennis is a phenomenal sport that can be played just about anywhere in the world when there’s a tennis court available. However, some tennis courts have been correctly positioned in the most beautiful locations known to man, allowing tennis players to marvel at Earth’s beauty while enjoying a competitive game of tennis in the process.

Gstaad Palace, Switzerland

During the winter, Switzerland offers some of the most beautiful terrain and scenery for skiing. However, you’ll be a fool to overlook the months of summer, especially when you consider the Gstaad Palace where you’ll find several clay courts that are surrounded by magnificent mountains which will provide you with a remarkable Alpine experience.

II San Pietro, Italy

If you ever find yourself on the incredible Mediterranean yacht circuit in summer, a stop at Positano is highly recommendable. Once you are off the boat, you’ll struggle to find a better hotel than the II San Pietro. Even though cruising it’s crystal clear waters, lounging around the crescent-shaped pool, and dining like royalty is going to be your primary objectives, don’t forget about the tennis court, offering cinematic ocean views and towering rock formations.

Tennis de la Cavalerie, France

A couple of kilometres away from Roland Garros, situated on the grounds of Bois de Boulogne, is another spectacular tennis court, known as La Cavalerie. The property only offers one tennis court. However, it features arched walls and ceilings that are constructed from 1,400 pieces of solid wood that are arranged in a magnificent diamond shape. It’s so beautiful. You’ll quickly forget that it’s situated on top of an Aston Martin dealership.

Pikes Ibiza Rocks House, Spain

Ibiza is the last place that comes to mind when you think of athletic activities. However, the famous party island impresses with one of the boldest and most vibrant tennis courts in the world at the legendary Pikes Ibiza Rocks House. It comes equipped with a bright pink and neon green surface that will certainly give you a shock. However, what would you expect from a place that used to host orgies during the 1980s?

Enchantment Resort, Arizona, United States

While the primary objective is to focus on the ball during a competitive match at the Enchantment Resort, you might find it quite challenging to concentrate. You don’t have to look inside yourself for the lack of concentration but will instead lose focus due to the breath-taking backdrop that boasts several red sandstone formations.

All Iowa Lawn Tennis Club, United States

The All Iowa Lawn Tennis Club can be seen as the Wimbledon of Iowa. Even though there’s only one tennis court available and thousands of miles away from the most prestigious tennis tournament in the world, if you forget about the wind turbines that surround the court, you can easily see yourself at Centre Court. Denise and Mark Kuhn, the owners of the tennis court, even decided to intern with the groundsmen at Wimbledon to ensure the grass is the same.

Rafael Nadal Defeats Novak Djokovic to Win Italian Open

Ranked as the number 2 tennis player in the world, Rafael Nadal managed to defeat the number 1 tennis player in the world, Novak Djokovic, to win Sunday’s Italian Open in Rome for his first victory of the season along with his 9th title at the prestigious event.

The Italian Open was Nadal’s first clay-court final victory against Djokovic since the French Open in 2014. This was also the 54th meeting between the two tennis stars, and Djokovic currently leads by 28-26 against Nadal in all sessions.

Statistics Between Nadal and Djokovic

This was considered their 8th clash in Rome, and their 5th meeting in the final. Rafael Nadal currently leads 5-3 over Djokovic in Rome, and 3-2 in terms of finals in Rome.

The only tournaments that Rafael Nadal has managed to win more frequently than the Italian Open are the Monte Carlo, Barcelona, and French Open – all of which he has claimed a total of 11 times.

Rafael Nadal recently informed reporters that while a win is essential, he considers health and competitiveness more important than winning in his mind and that always improving his game is one of his biggest joys in life.

Novak Djokovic is still leading by 15-11 when it comes to all finals, while Rafael Nadal is leading Djokovic on clay by 17-7. Both these exceptional tennis players will now make their way to Paris where there’s even more up for grabs in the French Open.

Rafael Nadal will be looking for his 12th Roland Garros title, while Novak Djokovic will be looking to hold all 4 Grand Slam titles simultaneously for a second time in his tennis career.

Rafael Nadal’s Win in Rome

After Rafael Nadal won his 11th title a year ago at the French Open, Novak Djokovic claimed victories at the Australian Open, US Open, and Wimbledon, where he defeated Rafael Nadal in straight sets during the final to claim his 15th Grand Slam.

In more than five years, Novak Djokovic has been 13-3 over Rafael Nadal within the final of the Australian Open. All 3 of Rafael Nadal’s victories occurred on clay which included 2 in Rome and the semi-final of last year.

However, with his recent victory in Rome, Nadal managed to gain a massive confidence boost before making his way to Paris where he has managed to win 11 out of 17 Grand Slam titles.

In the match, Nadal looked like he was playing at his peak during the first set, while Novak Djokovic seemed a little off, allowing Nadal to hand Djokovic a bagel. This was mainly the first time that either of these players managed to take a 6-0 set against the other player in a total of 142 matches.

Should these two players meet again at the Roland Garros final in there weeks’ time, with Rafael Nadal leading 17-15 in the major count, the match could determine if Nadal will close the gap to Roger Federer or if Djokovic can close the gap of Nadal.

The French Open Storylines That Could Unfold in Rome

The last significant warm-up before the French Open – the final choice prize on the loaded circuit of Euro clay – is already taking place in Rome. There’s a mere week left following the conclusion of the Italian Open this week – a WTA Premier 5 and an ATP Masters 1000 tournament – before play begins in Paris. However, the players at Roland Garros usually skip the small events to focus more on the second Grand Slam event for the season.

In recent years, the narrative for the French Open was already determined when the Italian Open started. However, things are different this time around in Rome, giving the impression that things aren’t entirely settled. This means that the questions we asked carry a greater urgency than before and the next few days will be able to tell us the narrative for Ronald Garros.

Will Serena Williams Win in Rome?

If you want to determine how to fit Serena Williams is for the French Open, you can’t create an ideal tournament. The Italian Open is Serena’s most fruitful tournament on clay. She is a four-time champion with her most recent win in 2016. However, she has only dominated at the Met Gala in past months. She had a decent run during the Australian Open, but that was almost four months ago. She also managed to play in Miami and Indian Wells but pulled out in both events.

She will be facing her sister, Venus Williams, during Round 2 in Rome as the number 10 seed. She will also have Simona Halep and Sloane Stephens in her quarter, while she is in the same half as Naomi Osaka as the number 1 seed and Kiki Bertens as the number 6 seed.

Is Novak Djokovic Back at the Top?

Nobody, other than Rafael Nadal, has advanced to the French Open recently feeling like a top contender when it comes to men’s tennis. However, if Novak Djokovic managed to claim victory in Rome, he will have the right to brag about it, and he is well aware of it too. He recently informed reporters, after the great win over Stefanos Tsitsipas on Sunday in Madrid, that the victory was significant for his motivation and a confidence boost for Rome.

This is essentially a warning to every rival when it comes to how dominant Djokovic was during the Slam run from July through to February. However, motivation is a challenging aspect, as Djokovic demonstrated recently with his under-par performance.

Djokovic managed to equal the record by Nadal of 33 Masters titles with his incredible victory in Madrid. It’s difficult to imagine that he wouldn’t love to surpass his rival while playing in Rome. Hi, might get outplayed or outclassed in Rome. However, a defeat to a player outside the top 10 players would be a significant sign. Djokovic has been on top of his game recently, and there’s no doubt that he will continue that run in Rome.

Roger Federer’s Return to Clay After 3 Years

When Roger Federer makes his way onto the court on Tuesday evening in Madrid, it will be the first time in three years he steps onto the clay. Restricted by injury to only five clay matches during 2016 and avoiding the clay surface entirely in 2018 and 2017 to primarily focus on Wimbledon, the tennis star, as well as his friends and family, is very excited.

Madrid Open

Madrid has welcomed the 20-time Grand Slam winner by rolling out the red carpet in the last couple of days. In a country that has primarily enjoyed the success of Rafael Nadal over the last decade, it’s the face of Federer that has been promoted across posters in the capital of Spain. When it was announced that the Miami Open would feature Roger Federer, ticket sales increased significantly.

Federer stated on Sunday that he is pleased to finally return to clay after avoiding the surface for most of the last three years. He was indecisive about his return to the clay court but is happy to make his return to the Madrid Open this time around. Federer doesn’t have any high expectations walking into the tournament, but he thinks that anything is possible. Madrid is known for its high altitude, and Federer is interested to see how far he will get in the prestigious tennis tournament.

Roger Federer only started practising on clay last month. The last time he played a match on clay was during the 2016 Italian Open where he lost against Dominic Thiem due to lingering injuries in the third round.

Roger Federer’s Return to Clay

Considering he claimed victory at Wimbledon in 2017, after he decided to skip the clay circuit while he reaped the benefit of resting while others tackled the dirt, Federer’s return is quite surprising. Taking a break from clay for three years certainly increases the risk of an injury, not to mention that the movement also takes some getting used to. However, even though Wimbledon is his number 1 goal, he has been planning his return to the clay circuit for quite some time.

Federer stated that he needs to be ready for long matches and long rallies which means he needs to work on his endurance more than anything else. He already started with endurance training back in December as he already knew that he would be playing on clay during 2019. He also stated that he put loads of hours in on clay before the Madrid Open as he needed to get used to sliding all over the place as that is something that is key to winning matches when it comes to the clay courts.

With absolutely no points to defend this time around, there’s no real pressure in Madrid for Roger Federer. That’s beside the pressure he places on himself, of course. Roger Federer is going to play against Richard Gasquet in his first match along with a quarterfinal match against Thiem.