Monday, November 01, 2021

Weekend Tennis Roundup

Nice tournament wins for Alexander Zverev, Marin Cilic, Anett Kontaveit and Donna Vekic, plus all the ATP beef that's fit to post BELOW.

Alexander Zverev won his fifth ATP title of the season and 18th overall Sunday by defeating Frances [sic] Tiafoe, 7-5, 6-4, at the Vienna Open. While the title was pretty straightforward for the German, it was a hell of a week for the Maryland native, who had to qualify and then beat Tsitsipas and Sinner en route to the final.

In doubles, Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah produced a dominant performance on Sunday, overcoming Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury's lower body 6-4, 6-2 in the Vienna Open final to capture their third title of the season.

Anyone have the scoop on ATP coach Rob Morgan (far left)?

 Marin Cilic took out Taylor Fritz 7-6 (3), 4-6, 6-4 to clinch the St. Petersburg Open final on Sunday. The Croatian, who hasn't been in peak form for years, has managed to win two titles this year by defeating underachieving #NextGen players who tighten up in finals they should win: First Félix Auger-Aliassime in Stuttgart, and now this. 

Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares ended their strong week on Sunday at the St. Petersburg Open by clinching their second trophy of the season. The top seeds dropped just one set on the way to the title, overcoming Andrey Golubev and Hugo Nys 6-3, 6-4 in the championship match.

Anett Kontaveit -- who took Aryna Sabalenka's coach and then her results -- put on a dazzling display of power tennis to beat Simona Halep in the final of the Transylvania Open on Sunday, 6-2, 6-3, a win that not only gave the Estonian a fourth title in her last seven tournaments, but also secured her a spot in the upcoming WTA Finals in Guadalajara. Kontaveit is the eighth and final qualifier for the season-ending event in Mexico, joining Sabalenka, Barbora Krejcikova, Karolina Pliskova, Maria Sakkari, Iga Swiatek, Garbine Muguruza and Paula Badosa in the field. 

Kontaveit passed Ons Jabeur for the last spot in Guadalajara by winning Cluj-Napoca, and apologized to the Tunisian in her trophy speech. “I’m so sorry, Ons, that I had to do this to you,” she said. “I’m really looking forward to next year -- hopefully we can both make it!” Jabeur was one of the first people to tweet congratulations to Kontaveit ...

... but followed it up by showing her sense of humor is fully intact!

And Donna Vekic is back in the winner's circle. The Croat, who underwent right knee surgery in February, snapped a four-year title drought with a 7-6(3), 6-2 defeat of No.5 seed Clara Tauson in the Courmayeur Ladies Open final. A great win for Stan the Man's ex considering Tauson is seen as one of the best up-and-comers. 

Around the net ...

Lots of beefcake on my friend Greg's new GregSetMatch Instagram, including this spread of Andreas Mies.

Who doesn't want private lessons from Seppe Cuypers? (Any relation to Brigitte, who wasn't nearly as pretty?)

And speaking of which: It won't be long before Grigor Dimitrov is a racket club gigolo ...

Christian Harrison rolled the dice at the Challenger in Vegas and reached the doubles quarters with Mitchell Krueger

Aljaz Bedene has daddy potential

Not even bad hair can hide how handsome Jürgen Melzer is. The 40-year-old played doubles with Alex in Vienna

Austria's Dennis Novak won a match in his native land before falling to Jannik Sinner

Casper the friendly hitting partner

Andreas teamed up with Felix in Vienna, losing to the eventual runners-up

Hot couple alert: Nerman Fatic and Tomislav Jotovski, who looks very sexy in a swimming pool

Working out with Nerman 

Congrats to Luke Saville's shorts

Holy Marach! Leave it to a stop in Vienna to remind you how many how Austrian players there are

David Vega Hernandez, just as I want him

The headphones Mischa Zverev uses to drown out the abuse allegations against his brother

Andreas found a famous hitting partner in Andy Murray

and a famously beautiful one in Matteo Berrettini

Jan-Michael Gambill feels the burn

Sunset People: Juan Martin del Potro

What a shame Guido Pella isn't gay

Matteo pulled out of the Paris Masters due to injury, but still looks like this

Taylor Fritz turned 24 this week

The year-end No. 1 ranking in on the line for Novak Djokovic, who despite winning three majors and making the final of the fourth didn't play enough to ensure a buffer against Daniil Medvedev

Benoit Paire, ever the joker

That's one way to forget losing to a geezer

Nole, ever the professional

Mirror moves with Cam Norrie 

I'll say

Furniture model Filip Krajinovic, who is playing doubles with Novak this week in Paris

At 6-4, Marcelo Arevalo might be the tallest Salvadoran in the world

Vasek and the boys

Poor Tommy Paul

Diego Schwartzman came up short against Tiafoe in Vienna

Matt Ebden enjoys his final days of peace before becoming an actual daddy

Here's hoping the event sparked no wildfires ...

Stefano Travaglia's "intimate" marriage proposal

Courtney Lock's hot ID badge

Big Joe's on his way to Paris

Oscar Otte is the champion in Ismaning, claiming his third #ATPChallenger title and first of 2021.

Who's the lucky boy?

J.J. Wolf defeated Stefan Kozlov 6-4, 6-4 to capture the Vegas crown, his fifth Challenger title and first of the year.

Here comes the Mullet Man

Say hello to Flavio Cobolli. I should already know how to say tall drink of water in Italian.

I always thought Tracy Austin's boys looked too much like her to be hot, but youngest boy Sean may be the winner (far left)

Nico Jarry picked up the Challenger crown in Lima

(UPDATE: It was a typo.)

And last but not least, heartbreaking to read about the pancreatic cancer diagnosis of Serena Williams's friend and trainer Ester Lee. The only silver lining is the awareness the news is bringing to this pernicious disease. Wishing Ester and those who care about her well. xo

(With wire services.)

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