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Saturday, October 31, 2009

WTA World Tour Finals results

Svetlana Kuznetsova beat fellow Russian Elena Dementieva at the Sony Ericsson Championships in Doha - to send Venus Williams into the semi-finals.Dementieva could have qualified from the Maroon Group with a win, but she played poorly in a 6-3 6-2 defeat. Earlier, Jelena Jankovic reached the last four with a 6-2 6-2 rout of Caroline Wozniacki in the White Group.

Denmark's Wozniacki progressed after Victoria Azarenka retired due to cramp when trailing Agnieszka Radwanska. Defending champion Venus joins her sister Serena as the two players qualified from the Maroon Group to reach Saturday's semi-finals.

Venus will face Jankovic, while Serena plays Wozniacki for a place in the final of the $US4.55m tournament with the eventual champion taking home (£944,000).

Safin Moves Closer To 16th Career Title

Two-time champion Marat Safin kept alive his chances of clinching a 16th tour-level title with a 6-0, 7-6(4) quarter-final win over Denis Istomin at the St. Petersburg Open on Friday. He progressed to his first ATP World Tour semi-final in 12 months.

“I missed an easy smash to go 4-1 up and have a double break in the second set and then I started to doubt myself a bit and got a little bit nervous,” admitted Safin. “Serving for the match I lost my serve completely, but then played a good tie-break to be able to win in straight sets. But I won a lottery basically.

“I played very well in the first set, but not so good in the second, so it was nice to win in straight sets.”

Safin, the 2000 and 2001 titlist, improved to 20-5 lifetime at the ATP World Tour 250 tournament, after hitting 12 aces past Istomin in the pair’s first meeting that lasted 83 minutes. The 29-year-old former World No. 1 has amassed an 18-20 season record.

“It’s been a long time since I was in the semi-finals, so its nice to be back playing one tomorrow and also here in Russia,” said Safin, who last reached a semi-final at the 2008 Kremlin Cup in Moscow.

Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal shocked by Agassi controversy

Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal two of the best tennis players of our generation are shocked by the Agassi controversy.

Federer is shocked about the incident and hopes no such cases happen in the future.

Nadal extremenly unhappy with the cushion provided to Andre while others are punished,here is the quote "To me it seems terrible. Why is he saying this now that he has retired?, It's a way of damaging the sport that makes no sense. I believe our sport is clean and I am the first one that wants that."

He further said "If the ATP covered for Agassi then I think that's dreadful,If they covered for the player and punished others for doing the same kind of thing then that would seem to me to be a lack of respect for all sportsmen"

Boris Becker feels the same his view "I'm struggling to get my head around why Andre would want to confess to something so damaging as taking drugs and then getting away with it"

The thing is if ATP forgot after forgiving his mistake, Agassi should have forgotton too rather than creating a trouble to them by revealing the incident on his book just to increase sales.

People could have still forgiven him had he arranged for a press release and accepted the mistake rather than doing it for the sales of his book.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Agassi and Gasquet treated differently?

Well for most who didnt read my previous article on Agassi's confession, where I brought the news of the day, some body have reported it for no reason apart from being a die hard Agassi fan.

My point was straight forward Gasquet was made to repent for his mistake with a ban from tennis for few months, while Agassi was clever enough to tackle the questions raised on him by the ATP doctors once they have found him tested positive.

So its clear one not only has to be a good player but have to be a clever player to tackle the situations, if only Agassi would not have been clever nor a big name he would have faced the similar situation of Gasquet, but the thing is Agassi was smart to escape from the penalty in-spite of fooling ATP doctors, Agassi himself have confessed that not me, for thos who need proof of his statement pls go-trough top stories of today in yahoo.

Eventhough we can appreciate Agassi come forward with truth atleast now, ATP should make a lesson of it so no such things happen in the future.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Johny Mac Claims Wimbledon 2008 as the best match he ever viewed

John McEnroe has hailed the Roger Federer - Rafael Nadal Wimbledon final as the

"This is the greatest match I've ever seen," said John McEnroe, whose final against Jimmy Connors in 1982, had previously been the longest final.

His comments were repeated by the world's press and borne out by the huge television audience the final received.

Tennis fans caused a massive surge in electricity demand after Nadal took the Wimbledon title because they were glued to their seats during the epic match.

A 1,400 megawatt spike - equivalent to 550,000 kettles being boiled - was recorded at around 9.20pm, as the Spaniard lifted the trophy. The surge shows millions watched the match.

It was bigger than the increase in demand at half time during this year's Champions' League match when Manchester United beat Chelsea.

National Grid spokeswoman Isobel Rowley said the surge was huge because fans were so transfixed by the tennis, they could not move from the sofa to switch the lights on until the end.

Such was the rivalry between the two players, that the match also smashed betting records. Almost £10 million was staked on the match, according to initial estimates - breaking the £8 million record set just days ago when Nadal crushed Andy Murray in the quarter finals.

Scores of punters were frantically biting their nails as the match went on late into the evening. One eventually won £55,000 after backing Nadal to the tune of £10,000 a month ago - at odds of 9/2, said bookmakers William Hill.

Hills spokesman Graham Sharpe said: "What you have here are two players at the peak of their powers and popularity. "They are almost a tennis soap opera - traditional Federer appeals to the mums and dads with his cardigan, and Nadal is the modern sex symbol, appealing to kids with his sleeveless vests.

"That's why so many people put money on them."

Meanwhile, Federer admitted he was on the brink of calling for the match to be stopped and restarted the next day because the light was becoming so bad.

He said: "It would have been brutal for the fans and us to come back but it was rough on me to lose the biggest tournament in the world because of the light.

"It was not a whole lot of fun, but that's the way it is. It's over, what's the point in arguing about it?"

The five-times champion will now find his number one ranking under threat, and he added: "I wasn't able to break him in the last three sets but still I managed to push him right to the edge.

"Probably later on in life I'll go 'That was a great match.' I'm happy the way I fought. That's all I could really do."

Andre Agassi confesses on using drugs

Tennis legend Andre Agassi reveals in his forthcoming autobiography "Open" that he used crystal meth during his playing career, Paul Bogaards, a spokesman for the book's publisher, confirmed to the New York Daily News on Tuesday.

According to the Daily News, the eight-time Grand Slam champion admits using the illicit drug in 1997, the year he married Brooke Shields and went into a career slump that didn't end until 1999.

After pulling out of that slump, Agassi went on to win five Grand Slams and became only the fifth player to complete the career Slam. He has been heavily involved in charity work since retirement, opening his own charter school and championing educational reform throughout the country.

The information was first released this morning on the Twitter account of media analyst Richard Deitsch, but was subsequently removed:

"FYI: There's an off-the-charts book excerpt from Andre Agassi in the forthcoming SI: He admits to taking crystal meth during his career."

Both Sports Illustrated and People will run excerpts from the book.

Releasing this admission a week ahead of the book's release is an obvious ploy to generate interest and sell copies, and it's working. Almost all autobiographies are self-serving odes to one's own pursuit of greatness. They're rarely interesting. Agassi's could be different.

He's always been forthcoming with the press about his issues, whether it be his overbearing father, the therapy he underwent while his career was in shambles (the first time) or the true reason he cut his hair. The vulnerable, intense picture on the cover suggests more of the same is inside. (Compare it to the covers of other recent tennis autobiographies that look straight out of a Sears catalog.)

We'll reserve judgment on the drug use until we read the book excerpts, which should hit newsstands on Tuesday. The book will be released Nov. 9.

Update: (11:47 p.m. ET) The first excerpts have been released and, wow, are they explosive. Not only does Agassi admit to using crystal meth, but he describes how he evaded drug testers by lying about his useage.

In the first excerpt Agassi writes about taking the drug at home with an assistant known only as Slim:

"Slim is stressed too ... He says, You want to get high with me? On what? Gack. What the hell's gack? Crystal meth. Why do they call it gack? Because that's the sound you make when you're high ... Make you feel like Superman, dude.

"As if they're coming out of someone else's mouth, I hear these words: You know what? F*** it. Yeah. Let's get high.

"Slim dumps a small pile of powder on the coffee table. He cuts it, snorts it. He cuts it again. I snort some. I ease back on the couch and consider the Rubicon I've just crossed.

"There is a moment of regret, followed by vast sadness. Then comes a tidal wave of euphoria that sweeps away every negative thought in my head. I've never felt so alive, so hopeful - and I've never felt such energy.

"I'm seized by a desperate desire to clean. I go tearing around my house, cleaning it from top to bottom. I dust the furniture. I scour the tub. I make the beds."

Later on, Agassi writes, he received a call from ATP doctors telling him he'd tested positive for meth.

"My name, my career, everything is now on the line. Whatever I've achieved, whatever I've worked for, might soon mean nothing. Days later I sit in a hard-backed chair, a legal pad in my lap, and write a letter to the ATP. It's filled with lies interwoven with bits of truth.

"I say Slim, whom I've since fired, is a known drug user, and that he often spikes his sodas with meth - which is true. Then I come to the central lie of the letter. I say that recently I drank accidentally from one of Slim's spiked sodas, unwittingly ingesting his drugs. I ask for understanding and leniency and hastily sign it: sincerely.

"I feel ashamed, of course. I promise myself that this lie is the end of it."

The ATP accepted Agassi's version of events and he received no drug suspension.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Injury hits Soderling London bid

Robin Soderling saw his hopes of reaching the season-ending ATP World Tour Finals dealt a blow as injury forced him out of the Stockholm Open.

The world number 10 withdrew ahead of his semi-final against Marcos Baghdatis because of an elbow injury.

Soderling had an opportunity to make up ground on Fernando Verdasco by taking the title in Sweden.

The Spaniard currently occupies the eighth and final place for next month's season finale in London.

Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray, Juan Martin del Potro and Andy Roddick have already qualified, with Nikolay Davydenko well placed to seal seventh spot.

"I felt so much pain when I played in Asia," said Soderling. "I had an MRI Tuesday and they told me that I have to rest two, three weeks to get well."

Soderling has not yet decided if he will play his remaining tournaments, in Valencia and Paris, ahead of London.

"I haven't withdrawn from any tournaments so far," he said. "I'll just wait and see and have more medical examinations."

Monday, October 26, 2009

Cuevas-Granollers Edge London Finals Contenders For Moscow Title

Third seed Pablo Cuevas and Marcel Granollers won their first ATP World Tour team title at the Kremlin Cup in Moscow on Sunday.

Cuevas and Granollers converted one of eight break point opportunities, but held their nerve in the Match tie-break to defeat top seeds Frantisek Cermak of the Czech Republic and Slovak Michal Mertinak 4-6, 7-5, 10-8 in 85 minutes.

“I am very happy, this is a great tournament and it’s nice to end on such a good note,” said Cuevas, who was appearing in his fourth doubles final (3-1) and his first on a hard-court. “Marcel and I have played together only a few times and we’ve always done well, but this is our first title together. We had a great time this week.”

It is Cuevas and Granollers’ fourth ATP World Tour tournament as a team (11-3 match record overall). They made a successful debut at in April 2008, by reaching the US Men's Clay Court Championship final in Houston.

Granollers improved to 3-1 in doubles finals and he was contesting his first non-clay-court final. This year, he won titles at the Brasil Open in Costa do Sauipe (w/Robredo) and the Copa Telmex in Buenos Aires (w/A. Martin).

Cermak and Mertinak, who won 70 per cent of service points and hit four aces, dropped to 4-2 in ATP World Tour doubles finals this year.

They captured clay-court titles at the Abierto Mexicano Telcel in Acapulco, the MercedesCup in Stuttgart, the ATP Studena Croatia Open in Umag and the BCR Open Romania in Bucharest. The duo also reached the Movistar Open in Vina del Mar.

Cermak was attempting to earn his 21st career ATP World Tour title (20-14 overall) and Mertinak his 11th ATP World Tour title (10-3).

The duo is No. 9 in the ATP Doubles Team Ranking and they are trying to earn a spot in the year-ending Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in London next month.

ATP World Tour Finals 2009 - Countdown

The newly named ATP World Tour Finals concluding the men's main tennis season circuit is looming, and after some successful years in Shanghai, the elite event now finds its new home in London.

Qualification to be in the top 8 ranked players in the world by season end is reaching a climax with only 2 places remaining, of which the 7th place is very nearly sealed.

Ranking and Qualification as on Sat 24th Oct 2009:
1.Roger Federer - Qualified
2.Rafael Nadal - Qualified
3.Novak Djokovic - Qualified (Defending Masters Cup Champ)
4.Andy Murray - Qualified
5.Juan Martin Del Potro - Qualified
6.Andy Roddick - Qualified
7.Nikolay Davydenko - Provisional
8.Fernando Verdasco - Provisional

With injuries, fatigue and patriotic commitments to the Davis Cup following the event, the best in the world are plagued and pressured to perform at the very highest level after the gruelling season they have been awarded a place by - and now suffer from as a result.

So for those going, or simply any fan waiting to watch, here begins a month of anticipation and excitement as we witness the final push before the greatest glatiators of Men's Tennis enter the ring of the O2 Arena.

Why do I write this now? Well I got the first half of my tickets this morning, and have been waiting for this all year since I booked my seats - so I'm terribly excited!

Do share though - are you going? Have you got your tickets yet? Which days are you planning to go? Who is the player you are most looking foward to seeing in the event, whether you are going or not? And who do you think deserves to qualify for the final two places by their performance in 2009?

Sony Ericsson WTA Tour Championships

As if this tournament wasn't unappealing enough already with most of the players out of form, Wozniacki's betting scandal etc., then the group selection is just indescribable. I'll explain more later

The players who qualified have been:

Dinara Safina
Serena Williams
Caroline Wozniacki
Elena Dementieva
Svetlana Kuznetsova
Victoria Azarenka
Venus Williams
Jelena Jankovic

Alts - Vera Zvonareva and Agnieszka Radwanska

So - the groups. For some reason, as if to add insult to the joke that has been the WTA Roadmap, the groups have been split as follows:

1st Group

Serena Williams
Svetlana Kuznetsova
Elena Dementieva
Venus Williams

2nd Group

Dinara Safina
Caroline Wozniacki
Victoria Azarenka
Jelena Jankovic

Big clap, organisers. Put the four best players in one group and the other four who have won about two matches since Wimbledon between them in the other.

Oh. My. God.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Order of 15 Greats in the Open Era Tennis

Only since Jimmy Connors

1) Federer - 15 slams and dominance
2) Borg - 11 slams in 3-slam era; Influence to the game
3) Sampras - 14 slams
4) Lendl - 8 slams only but very dominant; Near miss in Wimby
5) Connors - 8 slams and long career; Influential
6) Agassi - 8 and career make up for less prestigious 4 Aussie
7) McEnroe - 7 slams and year 1984
8) Nadal -8 slams and clay dominance; Will move up
9) Wilander - 7 slams and 3-slam 1988
10) Edberg - 6 slams but more dominant than Becker.
11) Becker - 6 slams
12) Courie - 4 slams
13) Hewitt - 2 slams only but dominant albeit in weak era
14) Kuerten - 3 slams but only in RG
15) Safin? Rafter? Kafelnikov? - Hard to decide

Impressive Davydenko outclasses Rafael Nadal

What a match it turned out to be, the finals covered for many poor results and retirements of the tournament.

Congrats Davydenko for an inspired spirited performance, the match against Djokovic would have made him realize that he cant still play a match at that high level consistently, and we witnessed what Davydenko could do if he plays his best.

Davy's Tactics:

1]Very similar one of Rafa's formula - hit to BH again and again till Rafa moonballs, and then to hit a winner

2]Hit the ball with power in Air when going for winner than letting it bounce. This really paid dividends to Davy, as he won so many points with it and completely left Nadal out of the game.

3]Go for winners down the line or curling mid- cross court.

Saying all this its very difficult to play that aggressive with control, but Davydenko did it with precision accuracy.

Only time he blinked was on 1st set leading 4-3 [with a break of serve], thats the only time he felt nerves to lose a serve.

Minus points of the match
1]Very Poor Officiating by line referees , to many mistakes, both players lost faith on line calls. Davydenko was the most to suffer, some of his line shots which he didn't challenge were actually clean shots.

2]Nadal taking hell lot of time in between serves, twice it was clocked to be over 40 secs, the one precision clocking was displayed was on 1st set when the score line was 4-4 30-30 Nadal serving took too many seconds to serve. No idea when the chair umpire will have the guts to penalize him.

All in all a great match, and congrats Davydenko and Nadal for the impressive show.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Del Potro stand-in man for doubtful Federer

U.S. Open champion Juan Martin Del Potro will stand in for Roger Federer at the invitational Kooyong Classic in January if the Swiss world number one decides against defending his title, organisers said on Tuesday.

Federer thrashed compatriot Stanislas Wawrinka to win the title earlier this year, but is in doubt for the Jan. 13-19 Australian Open warm-up event due to a shift in priorities having become the father of twin girls.

The 15-times grand slam champion has indicated he may scale back his tournament programme in 2010.

"If Roger decides against playing at Kooyong, or another player withdraws before January 13, Juan Martin will step into the field," tournament director Colin Stubs said in a statement.

"I am delighted that such strong back-up plans have been put in place," Stubs added of the Argentine world number five.

Apart from missing the 2008 tournament with glandular fever, Federer has been a fixture at the leafy Kooyong Lawn Tennis Club since 2004 and has used it as a springboard to three Australian Open titles.

Organisers said they would be prepared to wait until "the day before" for his confirmation at Kooyong, which guarantees all players in the eight-man field three matches on the same surface used at Melbourne Park for the Australian grand slam.

Organisers have already confirmed seven out of the eight, including Serbian world number four Novak Djokovic, and seventh-ranked Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, of France.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Best Grand Slam Final of 2009

This year has been a superb year for grand slam finals in the men´s singles.

The four finals were.
Oz: Nadal beat Federer 3-2.
FO: Federer beat Soderling 3-0.
Wimbledon: Federer beat Roddick 3-2.
USO: Del Potro beat Federer 3-2.

In terms of excitement of the actual match, FO wasn´t up there, but in terms of the history being made (Federer winning all four slams and equalling Sampras´s record) it was in a class of its own.
I would suggest we vote for the ´best´ primarily on match quality and excitement, while also taking into account the sense of occassion and atmosphere, however really it´s up to you.

So the idea is you just choose one as your favourite and I´ll come along later on when the voting dies down and add them up.

Let voting commence.
I find it hard to understand how come AO finals was better than US Open, in AO both players didnt play to their potential and in contrast DP came from no where with amazing play on 4th set and win the 5th hands down to win the title.

The 4th set of USO was the best set of any finals, it had the shots which no other finals had [some amazing groundstrokes from DP, yet Fed found some way to break DP to take it to tie breaker], before the 4th set tiebreaker Fed was 1 point short of match point at 0-30 in DP's server, yet DP played like a GOAT and won the Game , then set and then Match.

USO - 5 Stars
Wimby -3 stars
AO - 2 stars
FO -1 star

FO wasnt bad, but Sod was just no match to Fed, if Sod would have beaten Fed from that no where position it could be up top with USO.

Last but not least people talk about Nadal's epic semi against Nando in AO, but the gap btw semis and finals was 48 hours and not less than 24 hours in case of USO, so for DP to beat Nadal and Federer in less than 48 hours was breath taking and the best performance of the year.

You cant beat The GOAT and GOAT killer in 2 successive days of a GS,if somebody does that he deserves the moment of the year.