Monday, October 28, 2019

Weekend Tennis Roundup

An emotional Roger Federer extended his record number of title wins at the Swiss Indoors on Sunday, defeating Alex de Minaur in straight sets to lift the trophy in Basel for a 10th time. Federer, who was already the most successful player in the history of the tournament, was competing in his 15th final in his hometown after seeing off No. 3 seed Stefanos Tsitsipas in a straight-sets semifinal win on Saturday. Meanwhile, 20-year-old De Minaur was vying for his fourth career title, with the previous three having all come this year in Atlanta, Zhuhai and his hometown of Sydney.

Earlier in the week, this David and Goliath clash got me hot 'n' bothered ...

The big man came out on top, winning 7-5 in the third.

The Wawrinka vs. Tiafoe Round of 16 match was a thriller -- and not just because the American had white shorts on and a hot guy in his box ...

Dominic Thiem defeated good friend Diego Schwartzman 3-6, 6-4, 6-3 in front of a packed home crowd in the Austrian capital, bringing his best level in crucial moments to complete the win after two hours and 25 minutes. Thiem improves to 9-0 in his home country this year, having also lifted the Generali Open trophy in Kitzbühel without dropping a set in August. The 26-year-old becomes the first player to lift five tour-level trophies in 2019, breaking a five-way tie with fellow Top 5 stars Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Daniil Medvedev.

And in doubles, Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury increased their chances of qualifying for the Nitto ATP Finals on Sunday, defeating Lukasz Kubot and Marcelo Melo 6-4, 6-7(5), 10-5 to lift the Erste Bank Open trophy. 

Perhaps even more thrilling is that they were in the company of Irish pro David O’Hare, who documented the occasion on Instagram. ☘️

The 4th seed Aryna Sabalenka captured the WTA Elite Trophy in Zhuhai, defeating the top seed Kiki Bertens 6-4, 6-2. It is the fourth WTA crown in China for Sabalenka out of five in total, earning enough points to finish the season in the top-11, just behind Serena Williams, despite some poor results and early exits in 2019. Perhaps equally noteworthy was that on-again, off-again coach Dmitry Tursunov was back in the fold. Might 2020 be the year for the 21-year-old Belarusian?

Botic van de Zandschulp, left, has claimed his maiden crown on the ATP Challenger Tour. The 24-year-old Dutchman won the title of the inaugural Tennis Challenger Hamburg In a final between two unseeded players, van de Zandschulp battled past Bernabe Zapata Miralles of Spain 6-3, 5-7, 6-1 on Sunday afternoon at the venue of the Hamburger Tennis-Verband.

And in doubles, my new boyfriend Maxime Cressy and Jamie Cerretani  clinched their maiden team title. The Franco-American duo, who finished runner-up to Quentin Halys and Tristan Lamasine in Ismaning last week, upset the tournament’s top seeds Ken Skupski from Great Britain and John-Patrick Smith of Australia 6-4, 6-4.

Around the net ...

Who says romance is dead?

Jan-Michael Gambill's desert heat ...

Favorite Diana Ross song: “Upside Down” or “I’m Coming Out”?

Tommy Haas won his fourth Invesco Series QQQ title of the year Saturday by defeating U.S. Davis Cup captain and defending champion Mardy Fish 6-2 in the one-set final of the SoCal Honda Dealers Helpful Cup at the Sherwood Country Club. Haas, the former world No. 2 and silver medalist at the 2000 Olympic Games, increased to a perfect 8-0 on the year with the victory. Earlier this year, he won titles in Newport Beach, Calif, Maui, Hawaii and New Haven, Connecticut on the North American tennis circuit for champion tennis players over the age of 30. (Might need to bump that age requirement up a notch at the rate the Big Three are going!)

Big boy ...

I’m afraid to ask ...

Oh, Simone ...

Can Karen repeat in Paris?

Borna's looking fit, but has the light already burned out on his career?

Fun to see some "behind the scenes" footage of Djokovic and Nadal practicing ahead of Paris. Best part: Rafa's face when Nole goes all Juliet Prowse on him!

(With wire services)

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