Monday, September 16, 2019

Weekend Tennis Roundup


World No. 2 Karolina Pliskova has become the first player with four WTA titles in 2019, toppling Petra Martic 6-3, 6-2 in Zhengzhou Open final for the crown number 15 overall. This brings the underachieving (or is it over?) Czech uncomfortably close to being No. 1 again, still having never won a major title.



In the first all-Japanese WTA final in 22 years, Nao Hibino downed Misaki Doi to win the Hana-cupid Japan Women's Open, 6-3, 6-2. After each Japanese woman had upset two seeded players en route to Sunday's championship, both unseeded compatriots, currently ranked outside the Top 100 but with career-best rankings in the Top 60, were looking to win their first WTA title in four years.


No.5 seed Rebecca Peterson stormed to her maiden WTA title at the Jiangxi Open with an emphatic 6-2, 6-0 defeat of No.4 seed Elena Rybakina in exactly one hour. 


I think the men were busy with some Davis Cup stuff this week, although I'm still unclear how it works. Some results are HERE.


Meanwhile, tennis's latest gimmick, the ATP Cup, is set to launch in January. Do we really need Hopman Cup, Laver Cup and now the ATP Cup to distract from the already neutered Davis Cup?


Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray have all committed to play in the inaugural ATP Cup in Australia next January, in a significant boost for the new nation-based event. The ATP announced the first 19 countries to qualify for the team tournament following the first-round deadline last Friday. Qualification is based on the current ATP men’s singles rankings, although host Australia has been given a wild card. Great Britain has qualified by virtue of Andy Murray’s protected ranking of number two in the world. The ATP said every member of the top 10 in the men’s rankings and 27 out of the top 30 players have committed to the $15m (€14m) tournament which will take place in Brisbane, Perth and Sydney from January 3-12 2020. Five further teams will be added after the second entry deadline on November 13 taking the number of teams to 24 overall. Teams will be allowed up to five players with their qualification determined by their world ranking after the November deadline.


And in Challenger Land, Damian and I were pretty glued to the TV this past week because we realized all the guys we love -- Noah Rubin, Tommy Paul, Kevin King, etc. -- were playing in the event in Cary, N.C. Top seed Andreas Seppi ended up beating American Michael Mmoh 6-2, 6-7(4), 6-3 on Sunday to claim the singles title of the Atlantic Tire Championships. 


And thanks to a diligent reader I also learned about Enzo Couacaud of France, who lost to the eventual champ in three sets.


And we'll never forget this classic "handshake" between Chris Eubanks and little Noah!

This week things are looking good in Russia:


ATP writes: Nitto ATP Finals qualifier Daniil Medvedev and World No. 9 Karen Khachanov lead the St. Petersburg Open, an ATP 250 event. Matteo Berrettini and Stan Wawrinka, the 2016 finalist, will also be looking to make a deep run in Russia as the ATP Race To London heats up.


And around the net ...


Oh, boy(s) ...


Cue "All the Lovers" ...


Maybe hot trainer Martin Nosko couldn't straighten Karolina Pliskova out because he's the type of guy who gets married barefoot ...


Robert Farah was busy showing off "his dog" again ...


Evgeny Donskoy: Yes, please ...


Michael Venus's pal Marcus Daniell has Saturday 'Stache potential!


Why don't I ever get invited to these hot Balkan brunches?


Tommy Haas won at the Dirk Nowitzki Pro Celebrity Tennis Classic in Dallas.
 

If Luca Pouille's results were commensurate with his looks he'd be in the Top 10 ... 


Andy Warhol would have liked 15 minutes with Neal Skupski ...


Ryan Harrison and Cesar Ramirez make a hot mixed-coloring couple ...


John Millman captioned this: "Mind the gap" ...


Marton Fucsovics can't stop driving me wild ..


FYI: I captioned this: "It's even bigger than I imagined" but he's yet to post it.

And last but certainly not least, do you think Borna Coric is especially guilty of being a cocktease? 

(With wire services)

4 comments:

Donny said...

Perhaps you missed world #187, Enzo Couacaud, making it the semis of a the Atlantic Tire Championships challenger event in Cary, NC. He lost in three sets to Seppi. I only mention it because he's awful cute. It was the first time I'd seen him [play] and it hopefully won't the be last.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enzo_Couacaud#/media/File:Enzo_Couacaud_6,_2015_Wimbledon_Qualifying_-_Diliff.jpg

Kenneth M. Walsh said...

@Donny: THANK YOU for reminding me about this. We had been watching all week. Just updated my post!

Donny said...

You're quite welcome! I thought you were probably watching. Saw the updated post. Sorry for all the typos in my original comment.

demc7 said...

re: ATP Cup....tennis players are always complaining about the length of the season/having no real off season, yet- they keep adding events.

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