Archive for April, 2009

 

Update on the Rome Masters

Thursday, April 30th, 2009

Uh-oh, Mr Murray has done it again. Poor guy. He shows great promise to do well and then something flies out of nowhere and he’s left wondering what on earth happened. The opponent wh  managed to do such a number on the world No. 4, was qualifier Juan Monaco of Argentina. He came at Murray with a determination and energy that knocked the young Scot sideways and out of the competition in round two, although he doesn’t seem too disheartened. As he readily admits, he’s not quite as confident on clay as he could be in the future. And if Novak Djokovic doesn’t reclaim his title in Rome, then Murray climbs to the World No. 3 spot.

The less said about my Murray prediction last week the better….

Rafael Nadal has already disposed of his first round opponent, Italy’s Andreas Seppi. Next, he comes up against Robin Soderling, a competitor who he finally dispatched in a third round 2007 Wimbledon after 5 days and 5 sets. Tempers and frustration ran a little high then, and it’s been billed as one of the top matches to see; the last time they played on clay was back in 2006 and Nadal swept the Swede aside with litt more »

 

Australia Withdraws From Davis Cup

Monday, April 27th, 2009

Australia is facing sanctions over its decision to withdraw from next months Davis Cup tie against India, due to be held in the city of Chennai from May 8-10.

Australian tennis officials in response to player unease had requested that the tie be moved from Chennai to a neutral venue, and when this request was denied they withdrew from the competition citing fears for player safety, especially with the elections to be run at that time.

Aussie Decision In Defiance Of ITF Ruling

The International Tennis Federation had undertaken its own assessment of the situation and had deemed the event to meet its safety guidelines, making the decision of Tennis Australia a direct challenge to that assessment.

As a result there is a chance that Australia may face a one year ban from the tournament, as well as a fine of up to $100,000.

Subcontinental Safety Fears Not New

The safety of sportsmen on the subcontinent has been a major talking point over the past few months, with the general opinion being that the situation is too volatile at present for anyone to adequately make guarantees about the safety of teams and individuals.

The terror attacks in Mumbai in November rasied the issues loud and clear, but it was the attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team in Lahore last month that really hammered home the realities of the situation in that region.

Granted Lahore is in Pakistan not India, and the poilitical instability in that country far more »

 

The Rome Masters Predictions and Beyond

Friday, April 24th, 2009

Now that Rafael Nadal has shown everyone how it’s done at Monte Carlo, the King of Clay Courts has moved on to Barcelona. Once that is over, Nadal meets up with the best of the rest in Rome for the Internazionali BNL d’Italia tournmanet(the Rome Masters). This masters is another that Nadal would love to snatch a victory at,  but then again so would everyone else.

So what would winning the Rome masters mean to some of the players looking forward to competing? And do I truly have the courage to make some proper predictions for the Rome Masters and beyond?

Well, I’ve taken four top players and had a stab at it.

Feel free to disagree; by the time I’ve posted this up I probably will do too.

Rafael Nadal: Well if he won at Rome, that would be the 15th Masters title he has scooped up, beating Federer’s best so far, and will be inching cl more »

 

Nadal Loses On Clay…Just Kidding!

Monday, April 20th, 2009

The 2009 clay court season has begun and Rafael Nadal has claimed yet another title at Monte Carlo – his fifth straight success at this particular event. He will be hoping this is an omen as he attempts to match his run of success here with his fifth straight title at Roland Garos a little later in the year.

Opposition players will be cluthing at straws but there was a glimmer of hope as Novak Djokoivic took the second set with ease – the first Nadal has lost at Monte Carlo since 2006.

Definitely clutching at straws.

Although Djokovic did manage to take the second set relatively easy, it seemed to be a minor blemish on an otherwise comfortable victory, with the Spaniard taking the title 6-3, 2-6, 6-1.

Nadal Demands More From Himself In The Weeks Ahead

Whilst Nadal did manage to claim victory on Sunday, he was his usual competitive self, demanding more and categorically stating there are facets of his game he will be working on before his defense of The French Open gets under way in a months time.

Nadal was particularly disappointed in his serve throughout the Monte Carlo Masters.

“This tournament I didn’t serve very well.” Nadal said “Especially the second serve was sometimes 120 kph (74 mph). So that’s (a) disaster. Yeah, I have to play more. Have to serve better.”

On a brighter note for the Spaniard he has now drawn level with Roger Federer as the winner of 14 Masters tournament titles. With the Barcelona and Rome Masters to be playe more »

 

Monte Carlo Masters and the Family Circle Cup

Friday, April 17th, 2009

Just a roundup of who-is-winning-what and who-has-crashed-out-against-whom this week. Currently running is the Monte Carlo Masters for the men, and the Family Circle Cup in Charleston for the women. Two tournaments which both hold their place in tennis circles as interesting places to play.

Once again Monte Carlo has come up trumps to demonstrate that it’s the cream of men’s tennis. The photos that are coming from the tournament are certainly helping. Djokovic, Nadal, Murray, Federer, Lopez and Verdasco pose with Prince Albert II at the launch party in their most stylish party gear; the clay courts sitting in an imposing fashion in front of the infinitively blue sea; photos of Andy Murray with what looks to be his first ever sun tan.

Rafael Nadal is in his element, now that the clay is back under those personalised trainers. He’s cruised past his opponents so far, his last being second-round opponent Juan Ignacio Chela who he brushed aside 6-2, 6-3. He’s currently leading Lapentti in his third round match after rain halted the match yesterday.

more »

 
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