Monday, April 04, 2022

Weekend Tennis Roundup


Thanasi Kokkinakis tweeted what we were all thinking. My full report BELOW.

The New York Times headline said it all: The Future of Tennis, Carlos Alcaraz, Has Arrived. The world watched in awe as the 18-year-old Spaniard overcame early jitters to beat Casper Ruud of Norway, 7-5, 6-4, to capture his first Masters 1000 tournament title -- and instantly make the likes of Martina Navratilova and Jim Courier say he, along with Djokovic, Nadal and Medvedev, has to be considered a favorite to win any major moving forward. (He's 18!)  It was an incredible display, something I cannot remember seeing in my lifetime. 

“I am not afraid to say I want to win a Grand Slam,” said Alcaraz, who said he received a congratulatory call from King Felipe VI of Spain after the win. “I know it is going to be really hard, but I am not afraid to say it.”

Meanwhile, the women's tour surprised me by having the perfect outcome to a post -Barty world: Iga Swiatek, who ascended to the top spot when the Aussie asked that her name be removed from the WTA rankings, made good on her new position, winning her third straight WTA 1000 event. 

That she did so by defeating Naomi Osaka, who prior to her mental breakdown at the 2021 French Open appeared to be the best player in the world, showed that the women's game is in better hands than I had originally thought. Here's hoping Swiatek gets another major (soon!) to further legitimize her standing, and that Osaka -- who says she is seeing a therapist after her recent meltdown at Indian Wells -- continue to bring her best game forward. The final was strangely one-sided, but there's a promising rivalry in there somewhere.

Last year's singles champ Hubert Hurkacz and 2018 champ John Isner took out Wesley Koolhof and Neal Skupski, 7-6(5), 6-4, to win the men's doubles. The victory completed a Sunshine Double for Isner, who won the Indian Wells title with compatriot Jack Sock two weeks ago.

The Euro duo narrowly edged the Polish-American team in the looks department, however.

And Laura Siegemund and Vera Zvonareva continued their successful partnership with a 7-6(3), 7-5 victory over No.1 seeds Veronika Kudermetova and Elise Mertens to win the women's doubles title. I didn't see the match, but couldn't help but wonder if Vera was shooting daggers at her former coach, who happens to now be Kudermetova's coach and husband.

Elsewhere around the net ...

Matteo Berrettini -- the king of tennis Instagram -- is recovering nicely from surgery on his right hand just as Daniil Medvedev announced that he will likely miss the clay-court season following hernia surgery

Matt Ebden appears ready to flex his muscle on the red clay ...

Ryan Harrison took a break from doggy duty to hit some balls

Taylor Fritz got revenge on Tommy Paul for Stockholm

Lucky girls got to guard Christian Harrison's body

Cesar Ramirez better watch his back

More J.J. Wolf porn

Hello, Bradley Paliska

Daniel Masur is Mask4Masc worthy, and then some 

Proving that he's not just a pretty face, 20-year-old Brit Jack Draper battled to his fourth title of the year, outlasting Zizou Bergs 6-2, 5-7, 6-4 to secure the Challenger in St. Brieuc! 

More HERE.

Benjamin Lock: Thumbs up

Manspread Monday with David Vega Hernandez 

How do I get this racket going?

Has Borna Coric joined Melanie Oudin's babysitting cooperative? 

How do I join this Audubon Society? 

Tracy Austin arrived in Charleston to cover the former Family Circle Cup, which she won twice when it was held on Hilton Head Island

Heterosexuality seems to be bringing Cristian Garin down

Cam Norrie's thick crew

It was truly a shame that anyone had to lose that semifinal match between Miomir Kecmanovic and Carlos Alcaraz, but kudos to the Serb for holding his head up high

Nice to see Noah Rubin back on the court, even if he lost in the qualifying rounds of a Challenger

Vroom vroom: Jamie Murray

First the baby and now this. Matt Ebden is hopelessly straight

Luca Pouille seems destined to be a hair model ... a step up from pro tennis player

Nino Serdarušić: Like Croatian needs another hot player

Hot daddy alert: Pablo Andújar and Stan Wawrinka 

Simone Bolelli: 36 and rising

Hola, Pedro Martínez Portero

Another day, another feather in Vasek Pospisil's cap

Lovers' quarrel resolved

Cute to see Gabriela Sabatini with surprise Miami semifinalist Francisco Cerundolo

Paula Badosa calling card

And last but not least: Agnieszka Radwanska recently made 98-year-old Ukrainian tennis player Leonid Staislavski's dream come true, perhaps the cutest thing ever!

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