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Archive for the ‘dubai’ Category

Oh, Mandy …

Posted by gauloises1 on February 25, 2010

You came and you left without winning.

And no, I will not feel sorry for you.

So … Andy Murray lost today to Janko Tipsarevic, 76(3) 46 64. Good times. It was during work hours and while we did have it on the TVs, I couldn’t pay it that much attention. Looked like lots of fun points in the third set though.

Anyway, it’s not that much of a surprise given his utterly shambolic form against Kunitsyn and Tipsy’s love of the big stage / the upset victory. What interests me is how Andy discussed the loss afterwards:

“It was obviously disappointing to lose, but I tried some things out and I think it was a good learning experience for me,” Murray said. “I would like to have won, but it’s not the end of the world. If it was a Slam or something my tactics and my game style would have been a bit different.”

He added: “When I’m getting ready for the Slams and the big events, you need to try some things. If you ask someone like Roger Federer how he gets ready, it’s not necessarily about winning the week before or playing your best the week before. It’s playing your best at the right times of the year.”


Apparently the things he tried involved serving and volleying a lot more, slicing his backhand less frequently and going for … wait for it … winners. And that’s all well and good (or alternatively things I virtually pray for on a daily basis). But it’s not like he doesn’t know how to play that sort of game and play it in big matches, too; we’ve all seen it. The problem is that, in the biggest matches, he doesn’t play like that. And I’m not convincd that dicking around until you lose in the second round to the world no. 39 is the way to go about fixing that particular problem.

Can be a dick.

But whatever. More rest before Indian Wells or … whatever. I’m done.

And it’s not like Tipsy’s some hack, either. In fact it was nice, in an agonising sort of way, to be reminded how well Tipsy can play when he has the opportunity and inclination. No question he played a great match and seriously earned the win. And I love a player who hardcore emotes.

On you go.

Posted in andy murray, dubai, janko tipsarevic | Tagged: , | 9 Comments »

Dubai, Dubai!

Posted by gauloises1 on February 24, 2010

… never seemed so strange. Anyway, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga got a bit of a let-off today when compatriot Michael Llodra (who picked up his Marseilles title a matter of days ago, lest we forget) abruptly retired after a tight first set which Tsonga took 11-9 in the tiebreaker.

A speedy recovery to Llodra, and a whispered “WHOO!” to Jo.

And speaking of people who I’d rather watch than other people, Marin Cilic played his first match since Belgrade today, beating Arnaud Clement 62 64.

In JMDP’s absence, I’ll take all the lanky, awkward adorableness I can get. In the spirit of which, check out this video. There are a few moments of my-limbs-are-too-long-for-this-world Marin magic. And frankly, it’s worth it for Jason Goodall’s overblown commentary and rampant redefinition of words like ‘eager’ and ‘delighted’. (Thanks to rachael for the link.)


Men’s Singles – First Round
[4] N Davydenko (RUS) d F Serra (FRA) 67(5) 64 61
[5] [WC] J Tsonga (FRA) d M Llodra (FRA) 76(9) ret. (left hamstring)
[6] M Cilic (CRO) d A Clement (FRA) 62 64
[7] M Youzhny (RUS) d L Lacko (SVK) 67(3) 76(5) 61
J Tipsarevic (SRB) d A Seppi (ITA) 76(4) 75
M Berrer (GER) d S Stakhovsky (UKR) 64 76(3)
T Robredo (ESP) d J Benneteau (FRA) 62 61
[Q] S Devvarman (IND) d M Chiudinelli (SUI) 64 75
[Q] B Phau (GER) d [WC] M Ghareeb (KUW) 30 ret. (back)

Men’s Doubles – First Round
S Aspelin (SWE) / P Hanley (AUS) d N Djokovic (SRB) / D Vemic (SRB) 64 63
J Tipsarevic (SRB) / V Troicki (SRB) d F Serra (FRA) / G Simon (FRA) 76(4) 60
C Kas (GER) / D Norman (BEL) d I Ljubicic (CRO) / J Melzer (AUT) 64 76(4)

Order of Play

CENTRE COURT start 2:00 pm
M Berrer (GER) vs [4] N Davydenko (RUS)
V Troicki (SRB) vs [2] N Djokovic (SRB)
Not Before 7:00 PM
[3] A Murray (GBR) vs J Tipsarevic (SRB)
[5] [WC] J Tsonga (FRA) vs I Ljubicic (CRO)

COURT 1 start 2:00 pm
[Q] S Koubek (AUT) vs [6] M Cilic (CRO)
Not Before 4:00 PM
[Q] B Phau (GER) vs [7] M Youzhny (RUS)
N Davydenko (RUS) / I Kunitsyn (RUS) vs [4] F Cermak (CZE) / M Mertinak (SVK)
[WC] R Bopanna (IND) / A Qureshi (PAK) vs A Clement (FRA) / R Lindstedt (SWE)

COURT 3 start 2:00 pm
T Robredo (ESP) vs J Melzer (AUT)
M Baghdatis (CYP) vs [Q] S Devvarman (IND)
[1] D Nestor (CAN) / N Zimonjic (SRB) vs F Lopez (ESP) / T Robredo (ESP)
[3] M Bhupathi (IND) / M Mirnyi (BLR) vs S Aspelin (SWE) / P Hanley (AUS)

Posted in dubai, jo-wilfried tsonga, marin cilic, michael llodra | Tagged: , , | 2 Comments »

Fighting Fit

Posted by gauloises1 on February 22, 2010

Andy Murray beat Igor Kunitsyn 62 63 today in his first match since the Australian Open. That, you might think, is good. Well, not when it was apparently the most agonising slog of all time and a lot of it looked like this:

Oh, goody.

Well, that’s what you get for not going to the gym for a month, Andy. Oh, he says he went to football matches and so forth, but we all know that’s just code for sobbing into his Hibs shirt. Inside the wardrobe, so nobody will hear.

Anyway, Nole looked mildly more impressive over Garcia-Lopez. In all senses.

And Baggy, despite suffering from food poisoning, came through 76(3) 64 over Gilles Simon. Another first-round loss for Gilles, but apparently he’s moving a lot better. So that’s something.

Men’s Singles – First Round
[2] N Djokovic (SRB) d G Garcia-Lopez (ESP) 64 64
[3] A Murray (GBR) d [Q] I Kunitsyn (RUS) 62 63
M Baghdatis (CYP) d [8] G Simon (FRA) 76(3) 64
J Melzer (AUT) d S Bolelli (ITA) 61 75
V Troicki (SRB) d [WC] R Schuettler (GER) 63 64
[Q] S Koubek (AUT) d F Lopez (ESP) 76(4) 64
I Ljubicic (CRO) d [LL] J Hernych (CZE) 62 67(3) 64

Men’s Doubles – First Round
[2] L Dlouhy (CZE) / L Paes (IND) d M Fyrstenberg (POL) / M Matkowski (POL) 76(7) 63
[3] M Bhupathi (IND) / M Mirnyi (BLR) d [WC] M Al Baloushi (UAE) / A Magdas (KUW) 75 60

Tomorrow’s OOP:

CENTRE COURT start 2:00 pm
A Clement (FRA) vs [6] M Cilic (CRO)
F Serra (FRA) vs [4] N Davydenko (RUS)
Not Before 7:00 PM
[5] [WC] J Tsonga (FRA) vs M Llodra (FRA)
L Lacko (SVK) vs [7] M Youzhny (RUS)

COURT 1 start 2:00 pm
M Chiudinelli (SUI) vs [Q] S Devvarman (IND)
A Seppi (ITA) vs J Tipsarevic (SRB)
Not Before 4:00 PM
S Aspelin (SWE) / P Hanley (AUS) vs N Djokovic (SRB) / D Vemic (SRB)
F Serra (FRA) / G Simon (FRA) vs J Tipsarevic (SRB) / V Troicki (SRB) – After Suitable Rest

COURT 3 start 2:00 pm
M Berrer (GER) vs S Stakhovsky (UKR)
[WC] M Ghareeb (KUW) vs [Q] B Phau (GER)
Not Before 5:00 PM
T Robredo (ESP) vs J Benneteau (FRA)
C Kas (GER) / D Norman (BEL) vs I Ljubicic (CRO) / J Melzer (AUT)

Posted in andy murray, dubai, marcos baghdatis, novak djokovic | Tagged: , , | 2 Comments »

My Hotel is Bigger Than Yours

Posted by gauloises1 on February 22, 2010

Some of the boys doing promotional shots in front of the Burj Al Arab hotel in Dubai:

Novak pwns you, Dubai.

Look at him, having his photo taken like a real top player. Bless.

Did Andy oversleep for this shoot, or what?

Seriously, I swear to god, he is wearing his pyjamas.

Either that or he’s having a prolonged reaction to Melbourne and has been in bed with the curtains closed, eating ice-cream out of the tub, with ‘Mad World’ on repeat for the last month or whatever.


Posted in andy murray, dubai, marin cilic, novak djokovic | Tagged: , , | 9 Comments »

ATP Week Ahead: Dubai, Acapulco, Delray Beach

Posted by gauloises1 on February 22, 2010

A 250 and two 500s this week …


Draw here.

With Federer out, Tommy Robredo now takes his place in the draw, opening against Marseilles finalist Julien Benneteau. Third seed Andy Murray’s half looks, consequently, a little bit easier, although much will depend on how Marin Cilic makes his return to the courts after his dazzling start to the year as he could well be Murray’s semi-final opponent. Mikhail Youzhny is a possible quarter-final opponent; he’s been playing really well, but also suffering some serious injury difficulties. All in all, this half looks like a great opportunity for Murray to bounce back from his heartbreaking loss in Melbourne … I’ve just jinxed him, haven’t I?

The bottom half looks a little more loaded, although unless Gilles Simon can find some fitness and form, it’s hard not to see Kolya in the semi-finals. Djokovic has drawn wildcard Tsonga in his quarter, but Tsonga in turn has drawn Marseilles champion Michael Llodra in the first round. If both play as they’ve done in the past week, I wouldn’t count on Tsonga getting through that one. Kolya-Nole semi-final and a big cheer for Nole …


Draw here.

Top Seeds: Verdasco, Gonzo, Ferru, Boss, Isner, Almagro, Pico, Montanes … a veritable who’s who of clay courters. Apart from Isner. WTF?

Delray Beach

Draw here.

Definitely the least interesting of the three. Top Seeds: Tommy Haas, Ivo Karlovic, Benjamin Becker, Jeremy Chardy

Posted in acapulco, ATP week ahead, delray beach, dubai, mardy fish, nicolas almagro, novak djokovic | Tagged: , , | 9 Comments »

The Withdrawal Method: Federer Out of Dubai

Posted by gauloises1 on February 21, 2010

Following Andy Roddick’s withdrawal, Roger Federer has announced he won’t be competing in Dubai this week due to a lung infection. He should return for Indian Wells.

In his absence, Djokovic and Murray will be the top two seeds.

Posted in dubai, roger federer, the withdrawal method | 7 Comments »

Dubai: Venus Victorious

Posted by gauloises1 on February 21, 2010

Blooming in the desert once again, Venus Williams defeated Victoria Azarenka 63 75 to take the Dubai title for the second year in a row.

I have to say that was one impressive performance from Venus. It’s been almost a year since her last title (Acapulco) and that’s almost as long as it’s been since I’ve seen her play that well. She was sharp, focussed, serving great, and her concentration didn’t lapse. She’s nearly 30 and she’s still showing up and winning big titles when she wants to. I call that impressive.

That said … poor Vika. She clearly really wanted this title and played, I thought, really well. Venus was just too good. It’s dispiriting in the extreme, but on the plus side, does provide some classic Azarenka reaction shots:

Not funny.

There better have been a group hug on Twitter.

Congratulations, Venus.

Posted in dubai, titlists, venus williams, victoria azarenka | Tagged: , | 2 Comments »

Who’s Out …

Posted by gauloises1 on February 19, 2010

High-profile casualties since we last spoke:

Out to Shahar Peer in Dubai.

Out to Agnieszka Radwanska in Dubai.

Out to Venus in Dubai.

Out to Li Na in Dubai.

Forced to retire against Shahar Peer with back pain.

Out to Vera Zvonareva in Dubai.

Out to Victoria Azarenka in Dubai.

Forced to retire against Lukas Lacko in Memphis after beating Fernando Verdasco.

Lost to Sofia Arvidsson after a promising beginning to the tournament.

And … Radek Stepanek (Memphis), Fernando Verdasco (Memphis), Nicolas Almagro (Buenos Aires), Gilles Simon (Marseilles), Richard Gasquet (Buenos Aires), and probably many more I forgot to mention.

Posted in anastasia pavlyuchenkova, caroline wozniacki, dubai, flavia pennetta, li na, marion bartoli, melanie oudin, memphis, svetlana kuznetsova, vera zvonareva | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Your Tennis News Round-Up: Who’s In …

Posted by gauloises1 on February 19, 2010

Shahar Peer, mainly.

She’s now beaten Yanina Wickmayer, top seed Caroline Wozniacki, and now Li Na after the latter was forced to retire with a back injury trailing 75 30. She may be surrounded by a small fleet of bodyguards and yet to play on the main court, there may be bizarre Twitter assassination nonsense going on, but Shahar is doing her job and doing it incredibly well under difficult circumstances. Good girl.

Victoria Azarenka had an impressive 61 63 over Vera Zvonareva, a titlist last week in Pattaya City and the conqueror of Jelena Jankovic one round earlier. Before today, Azarenka was 1 for 4 against Zvonareva. Nice to see her making inroads in the head-to-head.

Agnieszka Radwanska is also having a quietly impressive tournament, bagelling Flavia Pennetta and then earning a three-set win over Regina Kulikova, who took out Svetlana Kuznetsova. And props to Venus Williams for overcoming temporary nemesis Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova to progress to the semi-finals.

 In Memphis, Maria Sharapova is into the quarterfinals, which means she’s won her first matches of 2010. She’ll be hoping to join Anne Keothavong, playing her first proper tournament since her extended lay-off with that knee injury, who beat Karolina Sprem in straights to progress to the semifinals. But another Brit, Elena Baltacha, stands in her way …

On the men’s side, Andy Roddick is the only top seed left after he defeated James Blake. He’ll be facing Lu later for a place in the semifinals.

Jo and Gael will be facing off in Marseilles after they both had tough wins today over Ouanna and Seppi respectively.

And I have no idea what’s going on in Bogota or Buenos Aires. But the latter seems to have involved wins for Boss and Ferru, so I’m in favour, in general.


Posted in agnieszka radwanska, andy roddick, buonos aires, david ferrer, dubai, gael monfils, juan carlos ferrero, maria sharapova, marseilles, memphis, shahar peer, venus williams, victoria azarenka | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Dubai: More Of This Sort of Thing, Please

Posted by gauloises1 on February 15, 2010

Sveta and Vika. Vika and Sveta. Being buddies on twitter. Playing doubles together.

Bet you a hundred million billion pounds they’re not talking tactics.

I need more.

Posted in dubai, svetlana kuznetsova, victoria azarenka | Tagged: , | 2 Comments »