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No.1 Ranking Up For Grabs At Wimbledon!

Tuesday, June 19th, 2012

As Wimbledon 2012 approaches I’m sure all tennis fans across the globe are eagerly anticipating another two weeks of enthralling Grand Slam action on the famous grass courts at The Championships in SW19, many of us will also be eager to see whether or not we have a change at the top of the women’s and men’s world rankings at the conclusion of the tournament.

Maria Sharapova reclaimed the world No.1 ranking from Victoria Azarenka after her fine victory at Roland Garros but her new status will be shortlived if Azarenka can claim her second Grand Slam title at the All England Club over the next few weeks, Sharapova made the final last year and will be defending those points whereas Azarenka was a beaten semifinalist losing to eventual champion Petra Kvitova in 2011, if Maria fails to reach the final this year and Vika goes one better and makes her first Wimbledon final then we will see the tall 23 year old Belarusian take back the top spot once again, if both players make the final then they will battle it out for the Championship and the No.1 world ranking.

The men’s side of things is even more interesting as we have the top three players in the world all mathematically capable of being world No.1 at the end of The Championships, Novak Djokovic secured the No.1 ranking when he won the 2011 Wimbledon title last year and he has held the position ever since then, Rafael Nadal was beaten by Djokovic in last years Wimbledon decider but his recent victories on clay against his more »

 

The French Open – Where Fairy Tale’s & Dream’s Are Realised!

Saturday, June 9th, 2012

Every year we see upsets and history making results on the ATP World Tour and the women’s equivalent the WTA Tour, but when it comes to upsets and historic performances in Grand Slam tournaments the French Open at Roland Garros is the event where fairy tale’s and dream’s are realised more than any other.

I’m not sure whether it’s the romance of the tournament or the fact that Paris is the city of love, but whatever the reason the red clay courts at Roland Garros always seem to throw us one or two names every year that enjoy a fairy tale run at these championships, this year the woman who is enjoying the fairy tale ride and without question a “dream” tournament is the 25 year old Italian Sara Errani, the Bologna native has reached her first ever Grand Slam singles final after defeating current US Open champion Sam Stosur in the semifinals, regardless of whether Errani defeats Maria Sharapova to become champion she has already capped off a fantastic two weeks in Paris by teaming up with regular doubles partner and Fed Cup team mate Roberta Vinci to win their first Grand Slam doubles title.

It’s certainly been stuff that dreams are made of for Errani this past fortnight and her success continues a regular tradition at Roland Garros of players who unexpectedly prosper on the red dirt in Paris, Belgian David Goffin was the fairy tale story in the men’s singles this year, the baby faced 21 year old fell in the final round of qualifying but was awarded a spot in the main draw more »

 

The Blue Clay Experiment In Madrid, Was It Worth It?

Thursday, May 17th, 2012

After Roger Federer had recorded his third win at the Madrid Masters in Spain last week and joined fellow record holder Rafael Nadal with 20 Masters titles, attention quickly focused to whether or not the experiment with the blue clay in Madrid was actually worth it.
From a pure viewing perspective the blue courts certainly ticked the box for me, the ball can be seen so much clearer on TV than when it’s played on the traditional red dirt, the blue court contrasts well with the yellow tennis ball and it certainly makes for a more enjoyable viewing experience.
I even enjoyed the pace of the court and I actually wish the tour had more variety in it’s surfaces throughout the year, watching a slow to medium court where players rally from the baseline for long periods can get a wee bit tedious at times, so the pace of the court in Madrid also ticked the box for me.
It was also a refreshing change to see attacking play and players being rewarded for their endeavours, mind you that may have had something to do with the third aspect I will now look at, the court surface.
The court surface at the Mutua Madrid Open was clearly responsible for the majority of the criticism that the tournament received, most players complained that the courts were far too slippery and did not allow for firm footing which ultimately could have led to accidents and injury.
The most vocal of more »

 

Will The King Of Clay Be Dethroned in 2012?

Saturday, April 7th, 2012

With the clay court season set to dominate both the ATP and WTA for the next two months it seems timely to start contemplating the many questions that the slippery red dirt surface may help us answer in the months of April and May. With all four Davis Cup quarterfinals currently being played on clay the surface will completely dominate mens tennis for the next two months, women’s tennis will also be inundated with the red dirt surface in April and May although this weeks opening clay court tournament on the WTA calendar in Charleston prefers the more envious colour of green for their clay courts.

The only tournament that will be played on anything but a clay court surface for the next two months will be the WTA tournament in Copenhagen, Denmark, the home of former women’s World No.1 Caroline Wozniacki, the WTA e-Boks Open in Denmark will be the only respite and hiatus that players will get from applying their trade on clay courts for the next two months.
All other tennis will be played on the red dirt with one notable exception being the ATP Masters 1000 tournament in Madrid, the Mutua Madrid Open will be played in early May and will revolutionise the red surface and become the first clay court tournament to adopt the colour blue, it is well known amongst tennis fans that blue courts provide better viewing for fans inside the stadium and also those at home watching on television.

The steady diet of clay court tennis will have all dirt baller fans salivating at the more »

 

When Is the Right Time To Retire?

Wednesday, March 7th, 2012

With the latest announcement that Ivan Ljubicic will retire at the Monte Carlo Rolex Masters this year and Fernando Gonzalez recently announcing that he will hang up his racquet at the Sony Ericsson Open in Miami this month, these two players pending retirements has focused the spotlight on another popular and well known figure in our game, none other than Andrew Stephen Roddick.

Andy or A-Rod, as he is more commonly referred to, has lacked the usual spark that we have come to expect from him this season and many are now questioning whether or not the drive, hunger and determination is still there to make his way back up the ATP rankings.
Roddick has seen his world ranking drop to No.31, his lowest ranking since July 2001 and he no longer appears to be enjoying himself the way he once did, this could well be because he has been carrying niggling injuries though or it also could also have something to do with the fact that Andy turns 30 in August of this year.
I believe that the game has now evolved past the era of Andy Roddick, while he does still possess his booming serve it has become even more apparent that the game is more about dictating play with big groundstrokes and punishing rallies nowadays, players are also now more adept on the return of serve which nullifies Roddick’s biggest asset.

There have been players in recent history though who would suggest that all is not lost just yet for A-Rod, Andre Agassi is the obvious one who springs to mind but Roddick is more »

 
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