Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Rusty Federer returns with a win

Updated November 03, 2011 11:32:43

Roger Federer needed 10 aces and a fighting finish in a 6-1, 4-6, 6-3 win over Finland's Jarkko Nieminen to secure his place in the quarter-finals of the Swiss Indoors.

Out of action for six weeks, the Swiss third seed was tested for the first time by his long-time rival in a series which began in 2002.

Since they began in Moscow nine years ago, Federer had won all 11 matches in straight sets.

Fellow 30-year-old Niemimen, a finalist two weeks ago in Stockholm, achieved a personal goal as he finally won a set off the Swiss, taking the second with two breaks of Federer's serve and despite double-faults on two of four set points.

It took a big effort in the third set for 16-time grand slam winner Federer to re-establish control. But he still needed three match points to end with a cross-court winner after just over 90 minutes.

"I'm really happy to go through," said Federer, the four-time tournament champion and holder.

"The second set was really tough and Jarkko played very well.

"He was also great at the end of the third (set). I found it tough to get my rhythm, it's a result of not playing for six weeks.

"To stay at your highest level you have to play consistently and I didn't manage to do that all the time today."

The field of leading seeds was reduced to Federer and Serbia's number one Djokovic as second seed Andy Murray withdrew with a right buttock muscle strain.

The world number three was replaced in the draw by Basel-born Marco Chiudinelli.

Ironically, his wild card was withdrawn by the tour in order to give it to Murray at late notice last week but he went on to lose to Robin Haase 6-2, 7-6 (9-7).

Murray said he woke up around 3:00am with pain in his buttock.

"I was struggling to walk," Murray said.

"I had trained twice on Monday and felt fine after that.

"It was a bit better later on Tuesday morning and I went to a pool for some exercises and had a light hit.

"But this morning (Wednesday) I knew it was still not good enough.

"I don't know how I did it or what it came from. I've never had anything like this before."

The Scot said his personal physio and doctor suspect the problem might be linked to the sciatic nerve.

Murray said he will travel to Paris on Thursday and take four or five days off with anti-inflammatory treatment in the hope of being fit for the final event of the regular ATP season starting on Monday, the Paris Masters.

Murray's pull-out was the second of the day after Serb sixth seed Janko Tipsarevic was unable to go on when he was trailing 5-1 in the first set against German Florian Mayer in their first round match.

Marcos Baghdatis of Cyprus joined Federer in the last eight as he beat Swiss Michael Lammer 7-6 (7-2), 6-7 (2-7), 6-3, taking nearly two-and-a-quarter hours to go through.


Tags: tennis, sport, switzerland

First posted November 03, 2011 08:51:52

View the original article here

Murray hints at strike over schedule

Updated September 20, 2011 10:14:10

Leading men's tennis players could go on strike if the ATP schedule is not reformed, world number four Andy Murray has claimed.

The 24-year-old Scot told the BBC that he had held several talks with other players at the US Open and they would be discussing the matter further at the Shanghai Masters early next month.

Matters came to a head at the US Open where rain forced some players such as Spanish star Rafael Nadal to play matches on three successive days then have one day off and travel to Europe to play Davis Cup.

The players were also incensed by the announcement last year by ATP chief executive Adam Helfant, who has since decided to leave the governing body, that the Paris Masters and the World Tour Finals would be played back-to-back, so two weeks have been saved in the 2012 ATP calendar.

However, Murray made clear the players' patience was wearing thin.

"It's (a strike) a possibility. I know from speaking to some players they're not afraid of doing that (striking)," said Murray, who was beaten by Nadal in the US Open semi-finals.

"Let's hope it doesn't come to that but I'm sure the players will consider it."

Murray, who is still without a grand slam title but this year reached the Australian Open final and the last four of the other three, was adamant that their voices had to be heard and that a strike or boycott will be discussed in Shanghai.

"If we come up with a list of things we want changed - and everyone is in agreement but they don't happen - then we need to have some say in what goes on in our sport," he said.

"At the moment we don't.

"We'll sit down, talk about it with the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) and International Tennis Federation (ITF), see if they will come to a compromise and, if not, we'll go from there.

"We just want things to change, really small things. Two or three weeks during the year, a few less tournaments each year, which I don't think is unreasonable."

Murray said it was vital the issues were raised now.

"Right now it takes so long to change things," he said.

"To get another change implemented may take five or six years at the rate things are going and then all of us will be done (retired).

"We want it to happen sooner rather than later."

However, the sport's administrators have also claimed that the players have themselves to blame for the heavy schedule.

ITF president Francesco Ricci Bitti said last week that complaints by Nadal over the Davis Cup scheduling were "inconsistent", saying players voted for the current dates, against the ITF's wishes, back in 2009.

The ATP too has hit back, saying it has taken into account the stresses on the players by reducing most finals to the best of three sets, allowing top eight seeds byes into the second rounds of tournaments and also increased the prizemoney.


Tags: tennis, sport, scotland, united-kingdom

First posted September 20, 2011 06:06:47

View the original article here

Media call: Roger Federer

Published:Friday, September 16, 2011 7:16 AESTExpires:Thursday, December 15, 2011 7:16 AEST

Switzerland's Roger Federer speaks to the media after his 5-7, 7-6, 6-2, 6-3 win over Australia's Lleyton Hewitt in the Davis Cup World Group play-off.

Tags: sport, tennis, australia, nsw, sydney-2000, switzerland

View the original article here

Tomic looks for fast start in Davis Cup

Updated September 15, 2011 20:52:52

Bernard Tomic will look to give Australia the whip hand in the opening Davis Cup World Group qualifying rubber against Switzerland at Royal Sydney on Friday against an opponent who freely admits to not being fully fit.

While much of the focus will turn to the second fixture between Lleyton Hewitt and Roger Federer, Australia's prospects of getting back into the World Group will be closely aligned to the result of the opening rubber.

Australia have already targeted wins against Stanislas Wawrinka as the most likely path to victory and the home side got some encouragement in Thursday's draw with Wimbledon quarter-finalist Tomic paired against the Swiss number two in the first match.

World number 19 Wawrinka, who has a modest 9-13 record on grass and has been carrying a foot injury, said he was feeling better and OK to play but was "still not 100 per cent".

Federer though quickly dismissed any concerns that he would be feeling the effects of two flights and limited preparation following his US Open semi-final loss to Novak Djokovic.

"I'm not sore. Sorry to disappoint you," he said.

"I'm feeling good, really good, actually."

So good it seems, he has been named to play in the doubles with Wawrinka on Saturday and reverse singles on Sunday - although Davis Cup captains can choose to change their playing roster for matches after the first day.

Hewitt is also slated to have a three-match tie, teaming with Chris Guccione in the doubles.

The former world number one who went through a horror 15-match losing streak to Federer said he got a major boost from beating the 16-time grand slam champion in their last clash, the 2010 final in Halle, also on grass.

"On grass with Roger's record in Halle, that gave me a lot of confidence to come back from a set down and win that match and win a title against Roger," he said.

"But Davis Cup's different. It's over five sets obviously and Roger is going to be up for it tomorrow and Saturday and Sunday as well.

"As a team we have to find a way to get three points out of the five matches."

Federer felt he should have won that day but conceded the result would have given his great adversary a boost.

"It increases maybe his belief that he can beat me but a former world number one and former Wimbledon champion should always believe he can beat anybody on any given day and it's going to be interesting to see how it goes but I am really happy to be playing against Lleyton," he said.

The winner of the tie advances to the Davis Cup World Group in 2012 while the loser will be forced to battle it out in zonal qualifiers for the chance to enter the elite competition again in 2013.

Australia has not played in the 16-nation World Group since 2007.


Tags: tennis, sport, australia, switzerland

First posted September 15, 2011 18:18:35

View the original article here

Serbia, France stay alive in Davis Cup

Updated September 18, 2011 12:22:43

Defending champion Serbia and France stayed alive in their Davis Cup semi-finals when they both won their decisive doubles rubbers on Saturday.

In Belgrade, Viktor Troicki and Nenad Zimonjic defeated Argentina's Juan Ignacio Chela and Juan Monaco 7-6 (7/4), 6-4, 6-2 to trail 2-1 overall while in Cordoba Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Michael Llodra earned France its first point by beating Spanish duo Feliciano Lopez and Fernando Verdasco 6-1, 6-2, 6-0.

After world number one Novak Djokovic pulled out of the opening singles rubber on Friday, Serbia slumped 2-0 down overnight.

Djokovic was suffering from fatigue as well as a back injury picked up in his US Open final win over Rafael Nadal on Monday.

World number 74 David Nalbandian took full advantage of Djokovic's absence on Friday to see off Troicki, who won the decisive leg of last year's final against France, 6-4, 4-6, 6-2, 6-3.

Juan Martin Del Potro then eased past Janko Tipsarevic 7-5, 6-3, 6-4 to give Argentina, which has never won the Davis Cup, a 2-0 lead.

But on Saturday Troicki and Zimonjic took a tense tiebreak and then battled back from 4-1 down in the second set, winning five games in succession, roared on by a 15,000-strong crowd.

"There was so much energy out there," Serbia captain Bogdan Obradovic said, adding that Djokovic was fit to compete on Sunday.

In the Cordoba bullring, nine-time champions France needed to win after Nadal cast off fatigue to thrash Richard Gasquet 6-3, 6-0, 6-1 in Friday's opening rubber and David Ferrer then defeated Gilles Simon 6-1, 6-4, 6-1.

And Tsonga and Llodra duly obliged giving their experienced Spanish rivals no chance.

Meanwhile, International Tennis Federation chief Francesco Ricci hit back at Nadal, insisting the Spanish superstar was wrong to claim the gruelling tennis schedule was damaging players' welfare.

Nadal had even hinted at a players strike in protest at a calendar which required him to play Davis Cup just four days after losing in the US Open final in New York.

"I have the deepest respect for Nadal. He is a great champion and a sporting role model, but to accuse the Davis Cup of putting players' physical well-being at stake is incomprehensible," said Ricci.

"Why doesn't Nadal address his complaints to the ATP which controls 90 per cent of the calendar when we control just a few weeks?

"It is not acceptable to us to relax the Davis Cup calendar. The players already play less than two weeks of Davis Cup each year. We want to find more favourable dates, we are already putting all this on the table.

"We will see what solutions we can find."

Nadal takes on Simon in Sunday's reverse singles with Ferrer drawn against Gasquet.


Tags: tennis, sport, serbia, yugoslavia, spain, argentina

First posted September 18, 2011 12:22:43

View the original article here

Berdych to face Cilic in Beijing final

Updated October 09, 2011 07:08:41

Czech Tomas Berdych outpowered top seeded Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga to take a 6-4, 4-6, 6-1 victory and reach the final of the China Open.

He will face Marin Cilic, who deployed his powerful serve to ease past fellow Croatian Ivan Ljubicic 6-4, 6-3.

In women's play, German 9th seed Andrea Petkovic overwhelmed Romanian qualifier Monica Niculescu 6-2, 6-0 to reach the final.

She will play 11th seed Agnieszka Radwanska, who defeated Italian Flavia Pennetta 6-2, 6-4.

Tsonga was unable to take control of the on-form Berdych, who is one of his rivals in the chase for a spot at next month's season-ending World Tour Finals in London.

The world number 10 took advantage of 15 Tsonga unforced errors, pounding his way into the final with his eighth ace on match point.

"This final could turn my season from a good one to a really great one," said Berdych.

"I thought I was in with a good chance, I'm expecting a tough final tomorrow."

Cilic, outserved his opponent with 13 aces against nine from Ljubicic.

He broke serve to lead 5-4 before serving out for the first set.

"I then started serving better, the start of the second set was really crucial," said the 23-year-old.

"It was maybe the best I've ever served."


Tags: tennis, sport, china

First posted October 09, 2011 07:08:41

View the original article here

Safin targets seat in Russian parliament

Updated October 28, 2011 10:17:44

Former world number one and double grand slam title winner Marat Safin is the latest Russian tennis player to confirm he intends to run for his country's parliament.

Safin, the 2000 US Open winner and 2005 Australian Open champion, said he was serious about his political ambitions.

"I am running for Federal Parliament in Russia," Safin told the ATP Champions Tour website.

"The elections are on December 4th so I will find out soon. It's a new challenge. I think I am an intelligent guy and I have a lot to bring and a lot of ideas about things and what to do. I am very committed to it."

Safin added: "I could be the best looking guy in the Duma, but that's only because all the other guys are over 60."

The 31-year-old Safin is the second Russian tennis star to target a seat in the Duma following 2007 US Open women's semi-finalist Anna Chakvetadze announcement in September that she was to stand for the Right Cause party.

The 24-year-old, formerly ranked in the top five in the world, has not played since Wimbledon in June because of poor health.

Chakvetadze said she wanted to "try something new" and focus on women's rights and children's sports.

"I joined the Right Cause Party because it's a young party," she said.

"All of its members are young people, who have many fresh ideas. I believe I also can bring some fresh ideas into this project.

"I'd like to be involved in deciding the questions concerning the sports sphere in case we manage to enter the State Duma."


Tags: tennis, sport

First posted October 28, 2011 09:25:59

View the original article here

Interview: Bernard Tomic

This service may include material from Agence France-Presse (AFP), APTN, Reuters, AAP, CNN and the BBC World Service which is copyright and cannot be reproduced.

AEDT = Australian Eastern Daylight Savings Time which is 11 hours ahead of UTC (Greenwich Mean Time)

View the original article here

Nadal sets up heavyweight final

Updated September 11, 2011 15:49:25

Defending champion Rafael Nadal booked a US Open title showdown against world number one Novak Djokovic with a tough 6-4, 6-2, 3-6, 6-2 win over British fourth seed Andy Murray.

Nadal, the second seed, will be playing in his 14th grand slam final in what will be a repeat of last year's decider where he became the youngest man to complete a career grand slam.

"I played my best match of this US Open today," said Nadal, the winner of 10 grand slam titles, after completing his 13th win in 17 meetings with Murray.

"I have played Novak five times this year, all in finals, and lost them all. I hope to have better luck this time and I hope New York will help me."

Nadal made sure he could get the majority of support in the final by taking time to remember the victims of the September 11 attacks, ahead of the 10th anniversary.

"I just want to send all of my support to the families of the victims of September 11th. I have terrible memories of that day," said the Spaniard, whose victory Saturday was helped by Murray committing 55 unforced errors to his 23.

Defeat for Murray, who reached the semi-finals of all four grand slams in 2011, means that Britain's long wait for a first major winner since Fred Perry in 1936 goes on.

"Anyone playing Rafa, you're gonna play a lot of long rallies. So if you can get some opportunities to try and shorten the points, then it would be good to do that," said Murray, the 2008 runner-up.

"Once I went behind, I realized that wasn't working. I was playing longer rallies. Physically I felt decent considering the circumstances. We had quite a lot of points and long games. I needed to be much more patient."

Nadal was in control from the start in a low-key first set, serving three love games, breaking in the eighth and claiming the opener when an off-colour Murray netted an easy backhand.

Murray squandered three break points in the second game of the second set which opened the door for the champion to again seize the initiative with a break for 3-2 when the fourth seed unleashed a loose forehand.

The world number two and French Open champion was quickly two sets to love ahead when he went to set point with an ace and clinched it when Murray again dumped a lazy backhand into the net.

But Murray finally managed to break for a 2-0 in the third set following a gruelling 28-shot rally.

The pair exchanged a 34-shot duel in the third game which Murray edged, but the Scot again failed to press home his advantage as a double fault handed Nadal a break point which he converted thanks to another netted groundstroke.

But Nadal was broken to trail 3-5 and Murray pounced on his opportunity to take the third set 6-3.

Nadal fought off a break point in the third game of the fourth set to lead 2-1, his defiance quickly rewarded with a 3-1 lead.

Murray, appearing to feel discomfort in his back, was under siege but he saved three more break points in the sixth game as a hold each gave Nadal a 5-2 lead.

The champion took victory when the Scotsman's challenge finally wilted with a backhand jab which sailed wide.


Tags: tennis, sport, united-states

First posted September 11, 2011 11:59:25

View the original article here

Gajdosova reaches Guangzhou quarters

Updated September 22, 2011 09:05:25

Defending champion Jarmila Gajdosova of Australia advanced to the quarter-finals of China's Guangzhou Open by beating Mandy Minella of Luxembourg 4-6, 6-2, 6-3.

Top-seeded Maria Kirilenko also advanced, defeating Iryna Bremond of France 6-3, 6-1.

Zheng Jie, the last Chinese player in the tournament, moved into the next round by beating Noppawan Lertcheewakarn of Thailand 6-3, 7-5, while Zhao Yijing of China lost to Tetiana Luzhanska of Ukraine 6-4, 2-6, 7-5.


Tags: tennis, sport, china, australia

First posted September 22, 2011 09:05:25

View the original article here

Djokovic knocks out Federer

Print Email

Australian Broadcasting Corporation

Broadcast: 11/09/2011

Reporter: Barrie Cassidy

World number one tennis player Novak Djokovic has beaten Roger Federer to reach the US Open final.

View the original article here

Czechs take out Fed Cup

Updated November 07, 2011 09:32:25

Doubles duo Lucie Hradecka and Kveta Peschke sealed a 3-2 victory for the Czech Republic in the Fed Cup final against Russia in Moscow.

The pair needed four match points to see off Maria Kirilenko and Elena Vesnina 6-4, 6-2 after one hour and 36 minutes in the Olympic Stadium as the visitors lifted their first title since 1988, when the former Czechoslovakia won the annual women's team competition.

"Petra (Kvitova) won two points for us but we needed one more," Czech captain Petr Pala said.

"I'm happy we managed to get the third one. We won it all together because the victory is made of small pieces you have to put together.

"It was great team work."

Russian skipper Sahmil Tarpischev also highlighted Kvitova's contribution to the Czechs' win.

"The Czechs won thanks to Kvitova's superb play," Tarpischev said.

"She was just great."

Wimbledon champion and world number two Kvitova had put the visitors 2-1 ahead after beating two-time grand slam winner Svetlana Kuznetsova 4-6, 6-2, 6-3.

Kvitova, fresh from her success at last week's season-ending WTA championship in Istanbul, battled back from a set down to win her first ever meeting with the 26-year-old Kuznetsova in two hours and 13 minutes.

"I wasn't playing my tennis in the first set, (I was) making too many mistakes, while Svetlana moved and returned very well," Kvitova said.

"It was tough to come back into the match in the second set but I forced myself into playing with crosses mainly instead of my favourite flat drives."

Kuznetsova admitted: "The difference between us today was that she has played so many tight matches this season, while I rarely had such intriguing matches.

"I played well today but she was just a bit better at key moments."

Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova took the tie to the decisive doubles by ousting Lucie Safarova 6-2, 6-4.

Pavlyuchenkova, ranked 15th, broke her rival's serve twice in the opening set for a one-set advantage after 41 minutes, and a break in the fifth game of the second set put her on the way to victory.

"I was nervous playing as I had no room for error," said the 20-year-old Pavlyuchenkova, who took 90 minutes to record her fourth win over Safarova in five meetings.

"But she (Safarova) also was in the same situation and it was also tough for her. Anyway, all's well that ends well."

Kvitova drew first blood for the Czechs on the opening day, beating Kirilenko 6-2, 6-2, while Kuznetsova pulled the scores level with a 6-2, 6-3 win over Safarova.


Tags: tennis, sport, russian-federation, czech-republic

First posted November 07, 2011 08:37:37

View the original article here

Tired Murray hits out after Davis Cup rout

Updated September 19, 2011 07:42:00

World number four Andy Murray insists the current schedule for top players must be changed to ease their workload after his tired victory in the Davis Cup against Hungary on Sunday.

Murray was forced to travel to Scotland to meet his Great Britain team-mates just one day after returning home from the US Open and next week he will be back on court in Asia at the Thailand Open in Bangkok.

It is the final part of a gruelling year-long schedule that has started to take its toll.

Britain had wrapped up victory over Hungary and promotion back to Europe/Africa Zone Group I of the Davis Cup on Saturday when doubles pair Colin Fleming and Ross Hutchins established an unassailable 3-0 lead.

But with a near full house expected at Braehead Arena and fans eager to see their hero, Murray decided to play in Sunday's first dead rubber against unranked Gyorgy Balazs.

It looked an easy task for the British number one on paper but he struggled to get going while Balazs proved a useful opponent, and in the end Murray was happy to come through 7-6 (7/3), 6-3 after going a break down early in the second set.

Murray then turned his attention to the demands placed on top stars and admitted the main problem is the number of mandatory tournaments the players must compete in.

As well as the four grand slams and eight Masters 1000 events, players must also enter four other tournaments, while the ranking points are made up of results from 18 tournaments, so players will lose out if they play less.

"The mandatory events is the worst thing. All you had to do originally was play in nine Masters Series and four slams, that was 13 events," Murray said.

"I'm being quite open about it. Some of the smaller events, because the ATP's messed up the smaller tournaments by giving them 250 points, it doesn't really make much sense to play in, because 250 points isn't going to make hardly any difference.

"When we play the Masters Series and the slams, we're playing against the best players in the world every time. The schedule's messed up and we need to change it."

The issue of the schedule and a feeling of a lack of power among the players came to the fore at the US Open, and a meeting is scheduled at the Masters in Shanghai next month where Davis Cup dates are likely to be discussed.

French Open champion Rafael Nadal hinted at a players strike in protest at a calendar which required him to play Davis Cup just four days after losing in the US Open final in New York.

Nadal's outburst prompted International Tennis Federation chief Francesco Ricci to hit back at the Spaniard but the issue clearly will not go away.

With British number two James Ward still suffering the effects of his dramatic win over Attila Balazs on Friday, Scot Fleming came in for the final rubber and recorded his first singles win in Davis Cup, beating Sebo Kiss 6-4, 6-3 to secure a 5-0 victory for Britain.


Tags: tennis, sport, united-kingdom

First posted September 19, 2011 07:42:00

View the original article here

Tomic knocked out by Dolgopolov

Updated October 25, 2011 13:07:21

Australia's Bernard Tomic has been eliminated from the Shanghai Masters by 12th seed Alexandr Dolgopolov, while defending champion Andy Murray progressed.

Ukraine's Dolgopolov advanced to the quarter-finals with a 5-7, 6-1, 6-0 victory over Tomic.

The win continues Dolgopolov's unbeaten record against Tomic, who he has defeated in all three of their previous encounters.

Murray survived a testing encounter with Stanislas Wawrinka to reach the quarter-finals as David Ferrer saved three match points to progress.

Second seed Murray, on a red-hot run of form of 21 wins from 22 matches coming into the clash against the Swiss 13th seed, won 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 under the roof at the Qi Zhong stadium.

The British player looked set for a straightforward victory after taking the first set but cut a frustrated figure as he conceded a break of serve in the second set as Wawrinka levelled the match with an ace.

Murray raced into a 5-0 lead in the decider as Wawrinka was warned by the umpire after smashing his racket but despite a late wobble, he closed out the match and remains on course for a final clash against top seed Rafael Nadal.

Earlier, Spain's Ferrer edged into the last eight when he beat injured Juan Carlos Ferrero.

Third seed Ferrer won the all-Spanish tie 1-6, 7-5, 6-2 after a major fright in the 10th game of the second set, when he was forced to dig deep to hold serve and prevent Ferrero from sealing the win.

The win for Ferrer means he becomes the fifth player to qualify for the season-ending ATP World Tour Finals, featuring the world's top eight singles players over the year.

Injury-cursed Ferrero had strapping applied to his right ankle midway through the second set after a nasty tumble and although he recovered to force the match points, his challenge faded in the third set.

American 10th seed Andy Roddick reached the last eight after an impressive 6-3, 6-4 win over Nicolas Almagro, seeded seven, of Spain.

Roddick secured a single break in each set, wrapping up victory with his 11th ace in a controlled display that saw him make just 14 unforced errors.

Japan's Kei Nishikori triumphed over Santiago Giraldo of Colombia 7-6 (8-6), 4-6, 6-3.


Tags: tennis, sport, australia, china

First posted October 13, 2011 20:10:52

View the original article here

Interview: Stanislas Wawrinka

This service may include material from Agence France-Presse (AFP), APTN, Reuters, AAP, CNN and the BBC World Service which is copyright and cannot be reproduced.

AEDT = Australian Eastern Daylight Savings Time which is 11 hours ahead of UTC (Greenwich Mean Time)

View the original article here

Sam Stosur wins US Open tennis

TONY EASTLEY: Australia's Sam Stosur has become the first Australian woman to win the US tennis open since 1973.

She beat Serena Williams 6-2, 6-3 during an emotion charged match.

Here's how Fox Sport's Nicole Pratt called the final point

(Sound of grunting)

MALE SPORTS COMMENTATOR: And she has done it. Sam Stosur has won the US Open and she has beaten Serena Williams 6-2, 6-3 in a dominant display.

NICOLE PLATT: What an unbelievable moment for Sam Stosur. She just cannot believe it.

TONY EASTLEY: Some of Fox Sports' coverage there.

On such a significant day for Americans, particularly those in New York, the tennis has taken on bit of extra meaning.

Our North America correspondent Michael Brissenden is at the US final and he joins us now.

Michael, good morning.

Firstly, there was an incident in the second set between Williams and the umpire. What happened in that?

MICHAEL BRISSENDEN: Yes, good morning Tony. It was a very emotional match - outside the court and on the court. The first game of the second set, where Serena Williams basically expressed herself very loudly before she hit the ball which was un-tennislike behaviour - and the umpire took the point off her, gave the point to Sam Stosur and that won the first game of the second set.

Serena Williams then reacted very angrily towards the umpire, said quite a few fairly explosive things like 'you are an unattractive individual', she called the umpire at one point, and 'don't take the point off me for expressing myself, I'm an American'. (laughs)

She was certainly very angry and she rallied for the next couple of points but after that Sam Stosur won the game.

TONY EASTLEY: Michael, from what you've seen there today, have the fans invested more emotion in this final than they would have normally?

MICHAEL BRISSENDEN: Oh, I certainly think there is no doubt about that. I mean, today is a very special day here of course. It is the 10th anniversary of the September 11 attacks, and many of the people we spoke to as they were coming in were hoping that the last American standing in this tournament, which was Serena Williams, they were certainly hoping that she would do them proud and win this match.

And I think many of them were certainly expecting it. I mean, I think most of the tennis community were certainly expecting it too.

What happened was an unexpected upset, I'm sure.

TONY EASTLEY: I guess a number of Americans saw it as American pride on show. What was the reaction when Sam Stosur won? Did she get a good reaction from the pro-American crowd?

MICHAEL BRISSENDEN: Oh, she certainly did and I think everybody here who saw the game saw that really Sam Stosur playing at her best, playing a lot better than Serena Williams in the end and she certainly deserved to win the game.

And there will be a lot of controversy about the way Serena Williams reacted to the umpire's decision at the beginning of that second set. A lot of people and certainly the commentary here was very- was very much along the line that it wasn't the right thing to be doing, it wasn't the proper way to approach the game and that in the end, it didn't do Serena Williams much good at all.

TONY EASTLEY: Our correspondent in New York, Michael Brissenden.

Well, Sam Stosur has just been interviewed in New York centre court. Here is some of what she told Fox Sports.

SAM STOSUR: Yeah, I think I had one of my best days so I guess I am very fortunate to have been able to do it on this stage in New York where I have always loved to play - so thanks everyone.

INTERVIEWER: You have been dreaming about this since you were about 10-years-old?

SAM STOSUR: About that, ever since I really started playing and knew what a Grand Slam was. This was a dream of mine to be here one day and it's... a kind of speech I don't even really know what to say and how I'm feeling but...

INTERVIEWER: Does it feel the way you thought it would feel?

SAM STOSUR: I think so. I think it does (laughs). But I do want to say, Serena, you are obviously a fantastic player and a great champion and you have done wonders for our sport so thank you very much.


INTERVIEWER: Very nice. It is about 8.15 in the morning in the Gold Coast, Monday morning. You figure a couple of people have just watched this back home?

SAM STOSUR: I think so. From the messages I was getting, lots of people were getting up early and watching so thanks everyone back home for supporting me.

(Applause and cheering)

I don't know what to say. Every- All my friends, all my family and everyone else, thanks so much for supporting me all the time, not just today but forever. So I look forward to coming back home.

TONY EASTLEY: Sam Stosur speaking centre court there in New York after she beat Serena Williams 6-2, 6-3 in the US women's final.

View the original article here

ABC Sport

View Transcript

Tags: sport, motor-sports, tennis, athletics, australia

Sorry, I could not read the content fromt this page.

View the original article here

Djokovic celebrates a point

Novak Djokovic of Serbia reacts against Rafael Nadal of Spain during the men's final at the 2011 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 12, 2011 in New York City

Tags: tennis, sport, united-states

View the original article here

Stosur wins US Open

Samantha Stosur downs Serena Williams to win the US Open

Samantha Stosur celebrates defeating Serena Williams to win the US Open singles final at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Centre in New York City on September 11, 2011.

Tags: tennis, united-states

View the original article here

Ruthless Federer races to victory

Updated September 06, 2011 17:38:11

Roger Federer was left waiting until almost midnight (local time) to start his US Open fourth round match, but made up for the delay with a brutal 6-1, 6-2, 6-0 win over Argentine Juan Monaco to reach the quarter-finals.

The five-time champion took the first set in 18 minutes and maintained his rapid pace as the third-seeded Swiss eliminated his unseeded opponent in just 82 minutes under the Arthur Ashe Stadium court lights.

"I'm very happy with the way I played," the 30-year-old Federer said.

Asked about firing away on all cylinders right from the start, Federer said: "I think you have to be ready. It is a very late start. I'm happy that so many people stayed. It's nice."

Federer, who more than doubled the number of points won by the overmatched Monaco, won one game with the fewest possible strokes, firing four aces past Monaco in his opening service game of the second set.

Asked if he thought about achieving the perfect service game, Federer said sheepishly, "Of course.

"You don't get a chance that often. It's only a game, only a few points, but it's sure nice to win that way instead of having to go for a 10-minute game."

Monaco says he has no chance against Federer at his ruthless best.

"Roger was playing unbelievable," Monaco said.

"I didn't have time to play. The ball was coming very fast. He was serving unbelievable."

The lightning-quick win, which came as rain clouds gathered and mist filled the air at the National Tennis Center, marked the Swiss master's 30th successive trip to the quarter-finals of a major, dating back to the 2004 French Open.

The 16-time major champion advanced to a mouth-watering clash against 11th seeded Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, who rallied to overcome eight-seeded American Mardy Fish in five sets earlier in the day.

Tsonga has won his last two matches against Federer, coming back from two sets down to beat him in this year's Wimbledon quarter-finals.

"He's a tough player. I've had some really good matches against him," said Federer, who has a 4-3 career record against the Frenchaman.

"He's an exciting player to watch and to play against."


Tags: tennis, sport, united-states

First posted September 06, 2011 17:07:14

View the original article here

Wozniacki set for Hopman Cup

Updated October 11, 2011 17:45:23

World number one Caroline Wozniacki has signed on for this summer's Hopman Cup mixed teams tournament in Perth.

Wozniacki, who has won 18 WTA titles but is yet to break through for a major, will join forces with Frederik Nielsen to represent Denmark for the December 31-January 7 event.

The teams for France, Spain and debutant Bulgaria were also announced on Tuesday, rounding out the eight-team field after Australia, China, United States and Czech Republic were previously confirmed.

France will be represented by world number 11 Marion Bartoli and world number 17 Richard Gasquet, who possesses arguably the most spectacular one-handed backhand in the men's game.

Three-times winner Spain will boast world number 24 Fernando Verdasco and world number 28 Anabel Medina Garrigues.

And Bulgaria, which will make its Hopman Cup debut, will rely on rising stars Tsvetana Pironkova and Grigor Dimitrov to cause some upsets.

Already announced were the Australian team of Jarmila Gajdosova and Lleyton Hewitt, China's Li Na and Wu Di, Czech Republic's Petra Kvitova and Tomas Berdych and United States' Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Mardy Fish.


Tags: tennis, sport, perth-6000, wa, australia

First posted October 11, 2011 16:55:06

View the original article here

Tomic smokes Fish in Shanghai

Updated October 13, 2011 16:52:17

Australian teenager Bernard Tomic has rallied from a set down to upset fifth seed Mardy Fish and advance to the the third round of the Shanghai Masters.

The 18-year-old won 4-6, 6-1, 6-4 to reverse last week's loss to world number nine Fish at the Japan Open.

The 49th-ranked Australian had only won one match previously against top 10 players, but levelled with two breaks in the second set and a single break in the ninth game of the decider to earn the triumph.

Tomic believed a decision not to get caught up in goal-setting had helped his impressive 2011 form, which includes a run to the quarter-finals at Wimbledon, during which he beat world number five Robin Soderling.

"I don't think I should set targets because, when you set goals, things change, things happen," he said.

"I think you've just got to play tennis, have fun, not have a lot of pressure.

"That's what I've realised, not to have a lot of pressure. If you have fun, good things happen."

Still 10 days short of his 19th birthday, Tomic showed maturity to bounce back after dropping the first set, breaking the fifth-seeded American twice to take the second set

"It's been a good year," he said.

"I can't expect much more from myself. I'm playing well here.

"The surface, the conditions suit me. I've got to play well now in the third round."

Tenth seed Andy Roddick refocused after losing his cool to post a 7-6 (7-3), 7-5 win over Bulgaria's Grigor Dimitrov.

Roddick won a first set tie-break and sealed victory after clinching a topsy-turvy second set that contained five breaks of serve.

After Dimitrov broke Roddick in the ninth game of the second set to lead 5-4, the American smashed his bag repeatedly in frustration but immediately broke back to level at 5-5, saving a set point.

Speaking about the incident, Roddick said: "I don't know that I made a first serve that game, so that was frustrating for me.

"So I was kind of pissed. I felt like I was getting it backwards a little bit."

Also in second-round action, Swiss 13th seed Stanislas Wawrinka beat America's Donald Young 6-7 (5-7), 7-6 (7-2), 6-2 and France's Gilles Simon, seeded eighth, eased past Spain's Albert Montanes 6-1, 6-1.

Earlier, Germany's Florian Mayer, the 15th seed, beat former world number three David Nalbandian 6-3, 6-4 to reach the third round and seventh seed Nicolas Almagro defeated Spanish compatriot Tommy Robredo 7-5, 6-3.

In first-round clashes, Serbian ninth seed Janko Tipsarevic crashed out to Feliciano Lopez of Spain 6-7 (2-7), 6-7 (3-7), dealing a heavy blow to his hopes of reaching the ATP World Tour Finals.

Tipsarevic won his first ATP title earlier this month at the Malaysian Open, but lost in the first round of last week's Japan Open.

Tipsarevic's Serbian compatriot Viktor Troicki, seeded 11, also lost, beaten in straight sets by America's Ryan Harrison.

Austrian 14th seed Jurgen Melzer, who defeated Rafael Nadal to reach the quarter-finals in Shanghai last year, beat Croatia's Ivan Ljubicic and Alexandr Dolgopolov, seeded 12, downed Lukasz Kubot of Poland.

Japan's Kei Nishikori overcame a disastrous start against Robin Haase to defeat the Dutchman 0-6, 7-5, 7-6 (7-5).


Tags: tennis, sport, china, australia

First posted October 12, 2011 07:08:18

View the original article here

ABC Sport

View Transcript

Tags: sport, motor-sports, tennis, athletics, australia

Sorry, I could not read the content fromt this page.

View the original article here

Back injury forced Safina retirement

Updated October 08, 2011 16:07:26

Former world number one Dinara Safina has retired from professional tennis, her elder brother Marat announced.

"Dinara (Safina) has decided to end her career," Safin said. "She has taken the decision relatively well. She considers it just to be the end of a period in her life."

Safin said the main reason for his 25-year-old sister's retirement was a chronic back injury.

"Everything is all right with her health. She feels good in everyday life, but (the back injury means) she simply can't play tennis professionally any more."

Safina last competed on the women's tour in April in Madrid, losing her round of 32 match to Germany's Julia Goerges.

Safina, who won Olympic silver at Beijing in 2008, played three grand slam finals and won 12 singles and nine doubles WTA titles during her career.

She climbed to the top of the women's rankings on April 20, 2009.


Tags: tennis, sport, russian-federation

First posted October 08, 2011 14:41:13

View the original article here

Hewitt tells his story walking

Australia's Lleyton Hewitt walks from the court immediately after his defeat by Switzerland's Stanislas Wawrinka during their Davis Cup World Group play-off in Sydney on Monday September 19, 2011

Tags: tennis, sport, sydney-2000, nsw, australia

View the original article here

Tomic celebrates a point

Australia's Bernard Tomic in action during his match against Switzerland's Stanislas Wawrinka during the first rubber of the Davis Cup world group play-off in Sydney, September 16, 2011

Tags: sport, tennis, sydney-2000

View the original article here

ABC Sport

View Transcript

Tags: sport, motor-sports, tennis, athletics, australia

Sorry, I could not read the content fromt this page.

View the original article here

Aussie Ebden opens Tokyo account

Updated October 03, 2011 23:02:53

Australian qualifier Matthew Ebden progressed to the second round of the Japan Open in Tokyo.

Ebden edged past Spain's Pablo Andujar in three sets, 6-7 (4-7), 6-4, 6-4.

Meanwhile, American number one Mardy Fish had to dig deep before beating promising compatriot Ryan Harrison to reach the second round.

The fourth-seeded Fish, who was 0-2 down in the first two sets, finally pulled through 6-4, 3-6, 7-5 against the up-and-coming 19-year-old.

Fish broke back in the fifth game of the deciding set thanks to Harrison's double fault on a break point and then moved up to 6-5 with another break.

He squandered two match points, but made no mistake at the third attempt, firing a forehand shot down the line for a clean winner.

Ranked eighth in the world against Harrison's 80th, Fish will take on either Ernests Gulbis of Latvia or Lukasz Kubot of Poland in the second round.

Seventh seed Radek Stepanek of the Czech Republic, who reached the semi-finals last year in Tokyo, had no problem, beating Somdev Devvarman of India 6-4, 6-3.


Tags: tennis, sport, japan

First posted October 03, 2011 22:17:17

View the original article here

Stosur's year over after semi-final defeat

Updated October 30, 2011 07:24:14

Samantha Stosur's run at the season-ending WTA Championships has come to a halt at the hands of big-hitting Petra Kvitova in Istanbul.

The reigning Wimbledon champion rallied from a set down to defeat Stosur 5-7, 6-3, 6-3 in just over two hours in a gripping semi-final encounter at the Sinan Erdem Arena.

World number three Kvitova, undefeated indoors this year in 18 matches, will play Victoria Azarenka in Sunday's title decider in a rematch of their semi-final at the All England Club this year.

Azarenka easily accounted for Vera Zvonareva 6-2, 6-3 in the other semi-final.

Stosur did well to withstand an early barrage from Kvitova to win the opening set but the US Open champion was eventually worn down by the lanky left-hander's power hitting.

The Australian picks up $345,000 for her work this week before a well-deserved three-week break ahead of the Australian summer.

Stosur ends the year as world number six for the second straight campaign.

However the Queenslander is a much more content figure these days following her Flushing Meadows success.

She was not too disheartened by her defeat to Kvitova, having at least claimed a set off her in their third meeting.

"This was definitely my best match against her so far," Stosur.

"I guess that's pleasing.

"At least I was able to come off the court knowing that I did everything I could.

"I got beaten by a player who played very well today. I'm happy with the way I played."

While many of her rivals limped to the finishing line at the end-of-season tournament, Stosur was hungry for the new season to start.

"It was the same thing last year, I got to the Championships and felt like I started playing really well again, almost didn't want to stop," she said.

"Now I could probably say the same thing now, but obviously it's been a long year and you always look forward to that break.

"But certainly it's now makes you eager to do that training and get into the next year."

Stosur entered the contest having lost her two previous matches against Kvitova in straight sets.

Standing a full four inches taller than the Australian, the left-hander dominated the opening exchanges in the indoor arena but Stosur battled to stay in touch.

At 3-4 and 0-40 down, the Australian pounced and then broke Kvitova for a second time in the 12th game to claim the set.

Kvitova rebounded to crack Stosur's serve in the third game of the second set and the Australian found it difficult to contain her opponent's thumping ground strokes.

After collecting the second set, Kvitova looked like cruising through the final set.

At 5-0 down and in danger of not getting on the board in the final set, Stosur gritted her teeth and pulled back three games before Kvitova sealed the win.


Tags: tennis, sport, turkey, australia

First posted October 30, 2011 07:22:09

View the original article here

Zvonareva reaches Pan Pacific final

Updated September 30, 2011 21:31:06

Russia's Vera Zvonareva overcame a nightmare start in her Pan Pacific Open semi-final, recovering strongly to power past Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova in straight sets.

Zvonareva, struggling with her serve, trailed 0-4 to her Czech opponent in the first set before battling back to win a tiebreak then romping through the second set without losing a single game to seal a 7-6 (7-2), 6-0 victory.

In the final on Saturday, Zvonareva will take on Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland, who defeated Victoria Azarenka of Belarus 6-3, 4-6, 6-2.

The 27-year-old Zvonareva, who hit a total of seven double faults in the first set, used an array of deep returns to attack Kvitova's backhand side as she fought back.

"I don't even remember that I was 5-1 down in the first set. I wasn't really thinking about it at all. I was trying to find my rhythm and I couldn't find it in the beginning," said Zvonareva, ranked number four in the world.

"She was playing really well. But slowly I got into the match and started making the shots I usually make and was able to turn it around.

"I think I played consistent in the second set and Petra made a few mistakes. We had tough games but I was able to convert all my chances and that's why the scoreline looked like that."

The 21-year-old Kvitova, ranked sixth, squandered three set points in the first set, allowing the Russian back into the match.

After finding her rhythm, Zvonareva raced into a 4-1 lead in the tie-break, taking the set when Kvitova hit an easy forehand volley into the net.

The Russian had to fend off five break points at the beginning of the second set but she was never really in danger.

"I was the first who was hitting the ball harder and I was the first going for a winner. I don't know what happened," Kvitova said.

"I didn't play my game, I didn't play harder, and I played badly. She came back and played better than me and she was the first who was going for a winner. The first set should have been mine, for sure," she added.


Tags: sport, tennis, japan

First posted September 30, 2011 21:31:06

View the original article here

Stosur beaten in Osaka final

Updated October 16, 2011 20:40:05

Australian US Open champion Samantha Stosur has fallen to France's Marion Bartoli in the final of the Japan Open in Osaka.

The French second seed battered Stosur 6-3, 6-1 in just 74 minutes to claim back the title she first won in 2006.

It was Bartoli's second title of the season, following her triumph at Eastbourne, and seventh of her career.

She qualified for the final after eliminating third seed Angelique Kerber of Germany 6-1, 7-6 (7-5) in the rain-delayed semi-finals earlier in the day.

Stosur, who claimed her first WTA title in Japan in 2009, beat China's Zheng Jie 7-6 (7-5), 3-6, 6-3 in a marathon semi that lasted two hours and 36 minutes.

Japan's Kimiko Date-Krumm gave local fans something to cheer about when she teamed up with China's Zhang Shuai to win the doubles title, beating American Vania King and Yaroslava Shvedova of Kazakhstan 7-5, 3-6, 11-9.


Tags: tennis, sport, japan

First posted October 16, 2011 20:40:05

View the original article here

Murray cruises past Lopez

Updated September 05, 2011 12:43:02

Britain's Andy Murray won the first 14 points and rolled to a straight-sets victory over Feliciano Lopez of Spain in the third round of the US Open.

The fourth-seeded Murray, a three-time grand slam finalist gunning for his first major title, was never broken as he took less than two hours to improve his record against the Spaniard to 6-0 with a 6-1, 6-4, 6-2 win.

After escaping from two sets down in a five-set victory over Dutchman Robin Haase in the second round, Murray made quick work of 25th seed Lopez with a cleanly executed game plan as he made just 16 unforced errors in the match.

In the round of 16 Murray meets 22-year-old American wildcard Donald Young, who beat the Briton this year at Indian Wells.

Young, the former world junior number one, reached the fourth round at a major tournament for the first time with a 7-5, 6-4, 6-3 win over Argentine 24th seed Juan Ignacio Chela.


Tags: tennis, sport, united-states

First posted September 05, 2011 12:43:02

View the original article here

Stosur into US Open semi-finals

Last Updated: Fri, 9 Sep 2011 08:07:00 +1000

Australia's Samantha Stosur has overpowered Russia's Vera Zvonareva 6-3, 6-3 to reach the semi-finals of the US Open in New York.

Stosur, who survived two epic three-set matches to reach the quarter-finals for the second straight year, extended her winning streak over Zvonareva to eight matches with an impressive display of hitting.

Zvonareva, who made the final last year and was seeded second this time, had no answer to Stosur's powerful serve.

Stosur became the first Australian woman to reach the semi-finals at Flushing Meadows since Wendy Turnbull in 1984 and will play either Italian Flavia Pennetta or unseeded German Angelique Kerber.

"To play the way I did today after the long waiting around that we had to do was really, really pleasing," Stosur said.

"To do it against Vera, who is a quality opponent, is a really good feeling."

"Obviously the last few times I've gone out and played against her I've played very well and I don't know what it is but maybe she brings out the best in me," Stosur added.

"I think I was able to come out here again today and play really well and I guess winning the last seven times always gives you confidence but there's that little bit of pressure there as well."

In the morning's other quarter-final, Serena Williams struggled with her serve in the first set before finding her range to score a 7-5, 6-1 victory over Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia.

The 29-year-old American, playing just her sixth tournament this year after being sidelined by injuries and health concerns, will play either top-seeded Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark or 10th seed Andrea Petkovic of Germany in the last four.

Williams said her days of indoor practice may have contributed to her erratic start.

"Maybe that had something to do with it," said Williams, who said she told herself not to get upset with her early errors. "Indoors I think is a little faster."

Stosur, on the other hand, may have benefitted from two days of enforced rest.

After a pair of marathon victories in the third and fourth rounds, she needed just 67 minutes to defeat Zvonareva.

Her third-round victory over Nadia Petrova took a US Open women's record three hours and 16 minutes, and she rebounded to beat Maria Kirilenko on Sunday after dropping a 17-15 second-set tie-breaker to the Russian.

Stosur never faced a break point and fired 25 winners against Zvonareva, who said the Aussie was just too good for her on the day.

"She was able to hold her serve pretty easy, that's why she could take a lot of risks on mine," said Zvonareva, who has yet to return to a grand slam final after runner-up finishes at Wimbledon and Flushing Meadows last year.

"She was over-playing me a little in every game."

The normally-restrained Stosur was even unable to stop a smile coming out after capturing a break at the beginning of the second set.

"When you are hitting winners from wherever you want to on the court and serving well," she said.

"To win 12 straight points against the No.2 player in the world is always a good thing."

View the original article here

Davis Cup set for dramatic finish

Updated September 19, 2011 07:14:54

Australia's Davis Cup play-off tie with Switzerland will go into a dramatic fourth day with Lleyton Hewitt a game away from a five-set defeat to Stanislas Wawrinka.

After world number three Roger Federer levelled the tie at 2-2 with a four-set win over Bernard Tomic earlier in the day, Hewitt and Wawrinka went toe to toe in a winner takes all battle that ended prematurely due to fading light.

Warinka leds the thrilling rubber 4-6, 6-4, 6-7 (7-9), 6-4, 5-3 after nearly four hours, securing a precious break early in the deciding set and holding his serve in the final game of the day as tensions rose at Royal Sydney.

Australian captain Pat Rafter was clearly frustrated when play was extended to 5.50pm AEST, accusing match referee Javier Moreno of "making shit up" as he ordered the players to continue in the Sydney dusk.

The two teams will return at 11am Monday morning where Hewitt will serve to stay in the match that decides which of the countries is promoted to the Davis Cup's elite World Group.

Things looked optimistic for Australia when Hewitt clinched the opening set only for Wawrinka to hit back immediately in the second.

The fired-up Hewitt saved three sets points when down 3-6 in the third set tiebreaker and then another at 6-7 before closing it out for a two-sets-to-one advantage.

The veteran Australian was playing some amazing tennis, particularly at the net where the former world number one produced a handful of deft volleys which left Wawrinka floundering and the astonished crowd on their feet.

But to his credit, Wawrinka, who was defeated by Tomic in the opening rubber of the tie and looked well below his best in the doubles defeat alongside Federer on Saturday, picked up his game.

Wawrinka found his range on serve and sent the rubber to a fifth and deciding set after taking the fourth 6-4.

His serve continued to dominate Hewitt in the fading light and Rafter made his voice heard for the second time in the day after demanding a faulty let cord sensor to be removed during Tomic's match.

Hewitt faced a nervy seventh game on serve, which if he lost would have provided Wawrinka the opportunity to serve for the match in the last game of the day's play.

The plucky Australia held his ground but Wawrinka did likewise and will go into Monday as the favourite still a break up.

Tags: tennis, sport, sydney-2000, nsw, australia, switzerland

First posted September 18, 2011 18:03:41

View the original article here

Stosur survives Russian challenge

Samantha Stosur of Australia wipes her brow during her marathon match against Nadia Petrova of Russia during the 2011 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Centre in Flushing, Queens on September 2, 2011

Tags: tennis, sport, united-states

View the original article here

Live blog: Stosur downs Serena for first slam title

Raman Goraya

Updated September 12, 2011 10:41:13

Samantha Stosur has won her maiden grand slam title with an emphatic 6-2, 6-3 victory over Serena Williams at the US Open in New York.

- Game, set, match SAMANTHA STOSUR 6-2, 6-3! She does exactly that, punishing a short second serve for a cross-court forehand winner. Sam drops her racquet in shock and climbs into the stands to get to her box. What an amazing victory. A deserved victory.

- Another championship points to Stosur. Sam belts a forehand return on Williams second serve. Ready to pounce on another.

- Williams saves another on the back of a big first serve. Tense. Really tense.

- Williams saves one with a great smash under pressure. Sam running everywhere. Another chance awaits, though.

- Two championship points for Samantha Stosur.

- Sam two points away as Serena sends a forehand wide.

- 5-3 Stosur. Ice cool from Sam. She is just a game away from her first grand slam title.

- Stosur bringing Williams to the net now and passing her emphatically. Top tactics. The serve still doing the job, too.

- STOSUR BREAKS and leads a set and 4-3. Caught the sluggish Williams on her heals a few times in that game by changing up her ground strokes. To say the Aussie looks determined on her way to the change of ends is an understatement. Now comes the tough part.

- Break point Stosur. A massive forehand return winner and a Williams error gives Sam a window.

- First serve percentage has taken off for Williams and got her back in the contest.

- Good to see Sam hasn't gone into her shell after Serena was beating her chest early in the set.

- 3-3. Williams showing off some of her trademark power hitting but a few forehand errors means Sam can hang tough and hold to 30, finishing off with a passing shot winner.

- No outbursts from Williams this time. Somewhat disappointing.

- 3-2 Williams. Stosur with a few unforced errors that game after having only nine up until that point. Ominously, Williams' serve is back on track. Let's see what Serena and the chair umpire chat about this time...

- 2-2. Stosur with a massive hold of serve on second deuce. After all the controversy and crowd hysteria, games are still on serve and she slows the Williams' juggernaut in this second set.

- Two break points for Williams. Stosur saves one BP with a monster down the T and forces Williams into a corner to save the second and send to deuce.

- Serena Williams to umpire at change of ends: "If you walk past me in the hall you better look the other way because you are out of control... You're unattractive on the inside... I never complain... You give me a code violation for expressing my emotions, we're in America!"

- 2-1 Williams. Games back on serve in second set as Serena holds to 15. The American is clearly trying to harness the crowd's influence now and is moving and striking much better. A few deep breaths for Sam.

- 1-1 Williams. Serena break back. We have a match now ladies and gents. Umpire may have inadvertently sparked Serena into action. Stosur saved two of the break points but can't hold off as the crowd, like Williams, finally wakes up. Stosur a passenger in that game as emotion rises in New York.

- Williams has three break points at 0-40.

- Crowd heavily involved now. Booing as Stosur tries to serve. Williams is... slightly annoyed. She wins the first point of the game, jogs to the chair and says something to the umpire (not G'day) and is hit with a unsporting conduct warning.

- 1-0 Stosur. STOSUR BREAKS. Controversy. Serena yells out c'mon on what she thinks will be a winner but Stosur makes contact on the ball. Stosur is awarded the point and game under the hindrance rule. Serena approaches the umpire (no death threats this time) but the chair stands her ground.

- You could hear a pin drop at Arthur Ashe Stadium. A boilover brewing? Let's not jinx it, yeah?

- GAME and FIRST SET 6-2 to Samantha Stosur. Took 31 minutes but seemed much quicker than that. Stosur literally serving herself to victory at the moment. The Aussie won the last 12 points of the set.

- Set points for Stosur at 0-40.

- Service stats: Stosur is landing 67 per cent of her first serves to Williams' 35 per cent. The telling stat so far.

- 5-2 Stosur. She has the DOUBLE BREAK and will serve for the first set! Amazing start. Stosur's composure to be put to the test in the next service game but Williams is hardly mustering a challenge at the moment.

- at 0-30 down the crowd (destined to play a part at some stage) tries to rally their home champion Williams. Doesn't help - three break points for Stosur.

- 4-2. Stosur holds to love and maintains the break. This is a dream start now. Sam's serve has been the platform for the early jump. Williams' serve to be put to the test again.

- 3-2 Stosur. Williams holds in deuce with a big ace but she trudges to her seat, head down. All the momentum still with Sam despite missing a few chances in that game.

- Another break point for Sam at 30-40. Serena relies on some heavy hitting to see it off and responds with a c'mon. That could snap the American into action.

- 3-1 Stosur. Fantastic game by Sam. Caps it off with a trademark overhead. This is a different Williams to the one we saw yesterday in the annihilation of Wozniacki. She is taking her time to find her range and VERY nervous. In contrast, Sam looks to have learnt from her defeat in the French Open final last year.

Stosur needs to make the most of this early advantage. Australia's last women's grand slam winner was in 1980 - Evonne Goolagong Cawley at Wimbledon. Our last women's US Open champ was the great Margaret Court in 1973. Lleyton Hewitt won the men's 10 years ago in 2001.

- 2-1 Stosur. STOSUR BREAKS. Sam continues to move much better than Williams, sending the American to all corners of the court. Williams also looks very nervous on this occasio, despite being a 13-time grand slam winner.

- Stosur has a break point at 30-40. Williams nervy in front of her home crowd.

- 1-1. Sam also holds to 30. One double fault at 40-0 but the Aussie is moving well and light on her feet despite a gruelling tournament.

- 1-0 Williams. Serena's opening service game is convincing enough. Holds to 30 including one ace and one double fault. Stosur striking the ball well early.

And we are off in the 2011 women's US Open final.


Age: 27

World ranking: 10, seeded 9

Born: Brisbane

Best grand slam performance: Finalist (2010 French Open)


Age: 29

World ranking: 27, seeded 28

Born: Saginaw, Michigan

Best grand slam performances: Champion.
Australian Open (2003, 2005 2007, 2009, 2010)
French Open (2002)
Wimbledon (2002, 2003, 2009, 2010)
US Open (1999, 2002, 2008)

- Players are warming up and unfortunately there is a little bit of rain in the air. Here's hoping it holds off.

- Welcome to our live coverage of the US Open women's final between Australian ninth seed Samantha Stosur and 13-time grand slam winner Serena Williams. Players are on court. Stay tuned.

Tags: tennis, sport, united-states, australia

First posted September 12, 2011 06:45:43

View the original article here

Spain, Argentina head for Davis Cup final

Updated September 17, 2011 16:34:01

Rafael Nadal buried the disappointment of his US Open loss to put Spain within reach of the Davis Cup final.

But champion Serbia is facing elimination after an injury blow ruled out world number one Novak Djokovic.

Nadal, defeated by Djokovic in the US Open final on Tuesday (AEST), thrashed Richard Gasquet 6-3, 6-0, 6-1 before David Ferrer defeated Gilles Simon 6-1, 6-4, 6-1 at the Cordoba bullring, as Spain led France 2-0 in their semi-final.

In Belgrade, where Serbia was facing Argentina, Djokovic was pulled from his scheduled clash against David Nalbandian, blaming fatigue and a back injury he suffered in the brutal final in New York.

Nalbandian defeated Victor Troicki, who replaced Djokovic, 6-4, 4-6, 6-2, 6-3 before former US Open winner Juan Martin Del Potro eased past Janko Tipsarevic 7-5, 6-3, 6-4, his third career win over the Serb, as the South Americans also led 2-0.

Victory for four-time champion Spain and Argentina, which is yet to win a Davis Cup, in the doubles will guarantee them places in the final.

Nadal had admitted to tiredness after his US Open final defeat but said that "if I come, it is above all to defend my country."

He gave Gasquet no chance in 30 degrees Celsius heat, breaking the Frenchman at the first time of asking and never giving his rival the hint of a chance before an enthusiastic 10,000 crowd.

"Even tired Nadal remains an exceptional player," said Gasquet, who has now lost all his 10 meetings with the Spaniard.

"I couldn't find a way past him. It's a painful defeat."

In other World Group play-offs ties, the Czech Republic was 2-0 ahead of Romania, with Japan 2-0 up on India and Italy 2-0 to the good against Chile.

Russia against Brazil, Croatia versus South Africa and Austria and Belgium were all level at 1-1.


Tags: tennis, sport, spain

First posted September 17, 2011 16:34:01

View the original article here

Media Call: Patrick Rafter, Bernard Tomic

This service may include material from Agence France-Presse (AFP), APTN, Reuters, AAP, CNN and the BBC World Service which is copyright and cannot be reproduced.

AEDT = Australian Eastern Daylight Savings Time which is 11 hours ahead of UTC (Greenwich Mean Time)

View the original article here

Tomic, Wawrinka to play Cup opener

Updated September 15, 2011 12:47:32

Australia has been given the best possible chance to get its Davis Cup World qualifying tie against Switzerland off to a winning start with Bernard Tomic to play Stanislas Wawrinka in the opening match.

Swiss world number 19 Wawrinka was paired with Wimbledon quarter-finalist Tomic for the opening fixture on Royal Sydney's grass courts on Friday, with Lleyton Hewitt to play world number three Roger Federer in the second match.

Hewitt and Chris Guccione have been named to play in the doubles against Federer and Wawrinka on Saturday.

While only ranked 59 in the world, Tomic will fancy his chances against Wawrinka, who comes into the tie under an injury cloud and with few outstanding results on grass.

Six-times Wimbledon champion Federer has a 17-8 playing record against Hewitt, but the South Australian did enjoy victory in their last match on grass in 2010.

The reverse ties on Sunday begin with Tomic playing Federer, followed by Hewitt against Wawrinka.

Hewitt says he is fit and looking forward to renewing his rivalry with the 16-time major champion.

"It's been what I've been working towards in terms of getting my game up to scratch and my body as close to 100 per cent right to take on one of the greats," he said.

"It's going to be a tough match.

"Hopefully Bernie can get us off to a good start against Stan on the grass tomorrow and then I can go out there and take Roger on."

While Wawrinka confirmed he still was not at 100 per cent, having been battling a foot injury, there was unfortunately for the Australians no such qualms for Federer, despite his gruelling five-set loss to Novak Djokovic in the US Open semi-finals.

"I'm not sore, sorry to disappoint you - I'm feeling good, really good actually," Federer said.

The winner of the tie advances to the Davis Cup World Group for 2012, while the loser will be forced to battle it out in zonal qualifiers for a chance to enter the elite competition again in 2013.


Tags: tennis, sport, sydney-2000, nsw, australia

First posted September 15, 2011 10:57:07

View the original article here

Federer celebrates win over Hewitt

Roger Federer of Switzerland reacts after winning a point against Australia's Lleyton Hewitt during their Davis Cup World Group play-off match in Sydney, September 16, 2011.

Tags: tennis, sport, sydney-2000, nsw, australia, switzerland

View the original article here

Margaret Court congratulates Sam Stosur on US Open victory

Margaret Court was the last Australian woman to win the US Open in 1973 and today she congratulated Sam Stosur on her first grand slam win.

The reigning Australian US Open winner admits she didn't stay up to watch the match but was quick to review the play when she woke to the news that Stosur had won the title.

"Looking at the replay, Williams' legs weren't going that well and she looked pretty nervous and tight," Court told ABC's Russell Woolf.

The straight sets match, 6-2 6-3, was a surprisingly easy win for Stosur's first grand slam victory.

Serena Williams, who already has 13 grand slam titles to her name, was defaulted a point in the first game of the second set which gave Stosur the game.

"Sam just got the best of her and wasn't going to let her in."

Margaret Court was busy in 1973 winning the US, Australian and French Opens not to mention giving birth to her first child the year before.

Court says there's nothing stopping Sam Stosur from taking another grand slam title in the future.

"Sam has the all-round game and if she doesn't beat herself there's no reason why she shouldn't win a few more."

Times have definitely changed since Margaret Court took the honour 38 years ago.

Sam Stosur picked up $US1.8 million ($AU1.7 million) for her US Open and is expected to pocket millions more in endorsements.

"I think I won $6000 for the first prize so a big difference today."

View the original article here

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Djokovic battles to end Federer era

Updated September 11, 2011 09:24:00

World number one Novak Djokovic rallied from two sets down and saved two match points to beat five-time champion Roger Federer 6-7 (7-9), 4-6, 6-3, 6-2, 7-5 to reach the US Open final.

The top-seeded Serb, who had also saved two match points en route to a semi-final win over Federer at Flushing Meadows last year, avenged his loss at the hands of the Swiss legend in the French Open semi-finals, a defeat which ended his 43-match winning run.

Despite losing the third and fourth sets, Federer appeared poised for victory after breaking Djokovic in the deciding set - the world number one's untimely double fault giving Federer triple break point which he converted to a 5-3 lead.

But when the Swiss great mustered double match point, Djokovic threw caution to the wind, pouncing on a 174 kph Federer serve and belting the return back for a winner.

"If it comes in, it comes in," Djokovic said of his strategy at that point.

"It's a risk. Last year, I was in a very similar situation. He was two match points up. I was hitting a forehand as hard as I can.

"You're gambling. If it's out, you lose. If it's in, maybe you have a chance. I got lucky today."

Federer was clearly stung to be derailed by a "lucky shot".

"That's why we all watch sports, isn't it? Because we don't know the outcome and everybody has a chance, and until the very moment it can still turn," he said.

"That's what we love about the sport, but it's also very cruel and tough sometimes. It got me today."

Djokovic saved another match point when a Federer forehand clipped the net cord and went out.

Two games later, Djokovic punctuated two long rallies with forehand winners to gain another break and he captured the three hour, 51 minute battle when Federer sent a service return long.

"It was definitely the biggest win of this year, one of the biggest wins of the career under the circumstances," Djokovic said.

"Roger was in control, playing better.

"I switched gears and played much better over three sets."

The defeat in the final major of the year ends Federer's streak of winning at least one grand slam every year since he won the first of his record 16 majors in 2003.

The heartbreaking loss was also only the second time in 184 matches that Federer has been beaten after leading by two sets and the fourth time in his career.

"You have to figure that Novak was going to get his teeth into the match at one stage," Federer said.

"Everything I did today I thought was the right way. He just played really well in the third and the fourth."

Djokovic, who will face either defending champion Rafael Nadal or world number four Andy Murray in Tuesday morning's (AEST) final, has a chance to add a third grand slam title to the Australian Open and Wimbledon trophies he has lifted in a spectacular season that has seen him win 63 of his 65 matches.

The Serbian also had to contend with a capacity, pro-Federer crowd in the massive Arthur Ashe Stadium and at one stage appeared to lose his temper when fans cheered his crucial double fault to go down 5-3 in the final set.

The at times maligned Djokovic taunted the crowd after saving the first Federer match point with his stunning winner and turned to them again for support when he broke Federer for the second time in three games.

But by the end of the fantastic encounter a humble Djokovic seemed to have put the crowd onside with an enthusiastic celebration and post-match victory dance.


Tags: tennis, sport, united-states, serbia

First posted September 11, 2011 07:33:51

View the original article here

Tomic tames qualifier in Sweden

Updated October 20, 2011 10:23:35

Australian teenager Bernard Tomic tamed Estonian qualifier Jurgen Zopp at the Stockholm Open to set up a quarter-final with French top seed Gael Monfils.

The 18-year-old, ranked 44th and youngest player in the ATP Top 50, beat Zopp 7-6 (7-5), 4-6, 6-0 to become an opening opponent for Monfils, who had a first-round bye.

The Frenchman will be testing a knee injury which forced him to miss last week's Shanghai Masters, where Tomic earned a top 10 win over American Mardy Fish.

A positive scan result in Paris allowed Monfils to return to the ATP this autumn after his fitness scare.

"It will be a tough task," said Tomic, who turns 19 on Friday.

"It's a first match for him and I've gotten a feeling for the court. But Gael's a world-class player, it will be a good fight."

Tomic won the opening set against number 145 Zopp in a tie-breaker, but had to run out the final set to love to earn the victory in just over one and three-quarters hours with 10 aces and 51 winners.

"It was really tough, it was my first time on the centre court here. To play a guy like that in the first round is tricky. I'm happy I won in the end."

Wimbledon quarter-finalist Tomic stands 16-14 on the season as he heads into his first match against Monfils.

"I played well in Asia and I have a good feeling come into this event," said the Australian.

"Wimbledon was big for me but I have a lot to learn and need to spend the next few years improving my game."

Another hot prospect, Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov, coached by Australian Peter McNamara, advanced as he put out American Ryan Sweeting 6-3, 6-1 with six aces and four breaks of serve.

Number 70 Dimitrov won a round in Shanghai and reached the Bangkok quarter-final where he lost to Andy Murray.


Tags: tennis, sport, sweden, australia

First posted October 20, 2011 07:28:55

View the original article here

Media Call: Lleyton Hewitt and Pat Rafter

This service may include material from Agence France-Presse (AFP), APTN, Reuters, AAP, CNN and the BBC World Service which is copyright and cannot be reproduced.

AEDT = Australian Eastern Daylight Savings Time which is 11 hours ahead of UTC (Greenwich Mean Time)

View the original article here

Wozniacki out, Ivanovic joins casualty list

Updated October 08, 2011 10:07:32

Defending champion Caroline Wozniacki suffered a humiliating defeat in the China Open quarter-finals as Italian Flavia Pennetta ran rampant on Friday.

The world number one's game collapsed in the second set and she was repeatedly left stranded by Pennetta's repertoire of lobs, volleys and powerful baseline returns.

Facing match point, Wozniacki staged a dramatic comeback to force a tie break in the third set but Pennetta superbly lobbed the flat-footed Dane to seal the match 3-6, 6-0, 7-6.

Wozniacki was the only top 10 women's player left in the event.

Former world number one Ana Ivanovic became the latest high-profile player to exit the tournament when the Serb retired from her quarter-final against Agnieszka Radwanska with back problems.

The 23-year-old was a set down when the injury she sustained last week in Tokyo flared up in the second set.

Maria Sharapova and Serena Williams pulled out of the competition a week ago, Victoria Azarenka failed to show for her match on Thursday due to injury while home hope Li Na exited in the first round, Sam Stosur went out in the second and Vera Zvonareva the third.

In the men's draw, world number one and 2010 champion Novak Djokovic was forced to pull out because of a back injury.

Ivanovic said she had been fighting a losing battle all week.

"I have had lots of treatments on the injury, but it hasn't got much better," the Serb said.

"I've been fighting it the whole week. I had an MRI here yesterday. The doctors are still looking at the results.

"I'm talking to physios and just making sure about the next steps to see what's wrong and what's going on. It's too early to say anything."

Romanian Monica Niculescu came from behind to beat Maria Kirilenko 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 to clinch a semi-final berth while in the men's competition Tomas Berdych thrashed Spaniard Fernando Verdasco 6-1, 6-0 to seal a place in the last four.

The Czech will play his seventh semi-final of the year against French top seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, who dispatched Spain's Juan Carlos Ferrero 6-3, 6-4.

Croatian Ivan Ljubicic beat Russian Mikhail Youzhny 7-6 (7-4), 6-7 (4-7), 6-2 and will Croatian Marin Cilic, a winner over South African Kevin Anderson 7-6 (7-4), 4-6, 6-1.


Tags: tennis, sport, china

First posted October 07, 2011 23:19:25

View the original article here

Roddick fumes but advances with big guns

Updated September 09, 2011 07:08:01

Defending champion Rafael Nadal and fourth seed Andy Murray reached the US Open quarter-finals after two days of frustration while Andy Roddick stormed off court in an angry tirade against officials.

Second seed Nadal saw off Gilles Muller of Luxembourg 7-6 (7-1), 6-1, 6-2 while fourth seed and 2008 runner-up Murray cruised to a 6-2, 6-3, 6-3 win over US wild card Donald Young.

But it was 2003 champion Roddick who grabbed the headlines when his last-16 clash against David Ferrer was suspended because of water seeping up through a crack in the surface on Louis Armstrong Stadium following another night of torrential rain.

After playing just two games of their resumed match, the players were taken off court as groundstaff tried desperately for 80 minutes to soak up the water.

When Roddick and Ferrer returned, the 29-year-old American was furious, telling besieged referee Brian Earley that the surface was still too wet to play.

He packed his bag and stormed off to jeers from the crowd.

"Why are we here if there is water there?" asked a furious Roddick.

"I'm getting really pissed off. Jesus, what are we doing here. It's killing me. I am baffled right now."

The match was switched to Court 13 as officials kept up their bid to clear a huge backlog caused by two days being washed out by rain.

The switch did not affect Roddick too much as he completed a 6-3, 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 win over fifth-seeded Ferrer and next faces Nadal for a semi-final spot.

Officials decided to suspend all further play on Louis Armstrong which meant the women's quarter-final between top seed Caroline Wozniacki and Andrea Petkovic was also played on Court 13.

Nadal, Murray hang tough

Nadal had trailed Muller 0-3 overnight after just 15 minutes of play had been possible on Wednesday, but with bright sunshine replacing rain, the Spaniard raced into the last eight.

The Spaniard has endured a dramatic US Open, collapsing with cramping at a news conference after his third round win over David Nalbandian before his frustrating two days waiting for the rain to clear.

He made up for lost time, taking less than two hours to complete victory over the 68th-ranked Muller who he had also defeated at Wimbledon this year.

Murray avenged his loss to the 84th-ranked Young at Indian Wells in March to reach the last eight for the first time since he fell in the 2008 final to Roger Federer.

Young had held a 2-1 lead when rain brought proceedings to a halt on Wednesday.

But Murray showed no ill-effects from the repeated delays as the 22-year-old American's bid to become the first wild card to reach the quarters since James Blake in 2005 was doomed by 53 unforced errors.

Murray said he will steel himself for the posibility of playing four matches in four days.

"It's not ideal, but that's kind of what you have to deal with just now. It was raining anyway so there was nothing we could have done about it at the time and there's no covers," he said.

"So you've just got to try and embrace the situation and do all the right things to get yourself ready if you have to play four matches in four days. But I'm still a long way from having to play four matches in four days."

Murray next faces 28th-seeded American John Isner who defeated 12th-seeded Gilles Simon of France 7-6 (7-2), 3-6, 7-6 (7-2), 7-6 (7-4) to reach a grand slam semi-final for the first time.


Tags: tennis, sport, united-states

First posted September 09, 2011 06:05:55

View the original article here