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Archive for the ‘zagreb’ Category

The Week In Winners: First Titles For Anderson & Dodig

Posted by gauloises1 on February 7, 2011

Rather a bizarre week in the ATP, wasn’t it? In Johannesburg, weird-looking giant homeboy Kevin Anderson captured the title; he was the fourth seed, but I don’t think anybody quite expected that. Still, with seeds tumbling earlier in the week, Anderson had a good opportunity and made the most of it, beating Adrian Mannarino in the semis and Somdev Devvarman in the final to take his first ATP title at the age of 24.

In Santiago, veteran Tommy Robredo took his tenth title (and his first since this time back in 2009), staging a comeback against Santiago Giraldo who served for the match up 5-2 in the second set before Robredo prevailed in three.

Robredo’s on to Costa do Saiupe next, where he’ll face Fabio Fognini who he defeated in the Santiago semi-finals, not unacrimoniously:

(via FueBuena)

Once I was a little boy
Then Fognini called me a piece of shit*
Ahahahahaha.

And rounding off the week in bizarre occurrences, pretty much the only Croatian in the draw who no-one expected to win Zagreb won Zagreb – namely, Ivan Dodig, who backed up consecutive upsets of Ivan Ljubicic and Guillermo Garcia-Lopez by defeating eighth seed and last year’s finalist Michael Berrer for the title.

It’s always a great feel-good story when a journeyman has a good week and takes his first title, particularly when it happens in front of his home crowd. Particularly impressive for Dodig, as he had to contend with the Worst Coitus Interruptus Ever:

Dear oh dear.

*not an actual translation

Posted in ivan dodig, johannesburg, kevin anderson, santiago, titlists, tommy robredo, zagreb | Tagged: , , | 4 Comments »

The Mystery of Marin & Other 250 Tales.

Posted by gauloises1 on February 5, 2011

Marin didn’t exactly got his revenge on Florian Mayer today. Instead, he notched up his second straight-sets loss to the German in a year, 63 64. I watched, and it was dreadful.

Marin himself said that he made a lot of unforced errors and couldn’t find any rhythm, which is a pretty accurate summation. I’ve been making light and making fun of Marin’s downward spiral for a long time, but I may have just reached the end of my tether. I intend no disrespect to Mayer, who is an incredibly improved player over the last year and making himself dangerous to all sorts of people. But it was the same match that Marin has basically been playing for a year now and I have just had enough.

What is going on?! This is the man who has been tipped for the top since forever, because he’s always looked to be nothing but upside. This is the man who made the quarterfinals of the 2009 US Open by beating Murray, blasted Rafa off the court in Beijing, then went straight on to the semifinals of the Australian Open. He struggled his way through Zagreb afterwards through sheer willpower, and then … what? I don’t know. OK, so he’s had his moments – finals of Munich, semis in Washington, round of sixteen at Roland Garros – but that is the very least he should be accomplishing, and those moments should not be interspersed with losses to the likes of Andreas Seppi and Andreas Haider-Maurer. And I just don’t understand it. He hasn’t had any major injury problems that have been reported in the press, and it’s a fact that he didn’t forget how to serve, hit his forehand or approach the net. He just became unable to do any of them on a consistently successful basis, for no apparent reason whatsoever.

Watch him these days and he’s a wreck of a player. Even when he’s winning, he’s still a bundle of nerves and errors being held together by sheer strength of will that’s always liable to shatter. The Marin of two years ago would have at least made a concerted effort to take it to Rafa in Melbourne. And the kind of errors he routinely made against Mayer were simple flinching at the moment of potential victory, like choking on a point-by-point level, and I just … don’t … understand … why!

Personal problems? Injuries or illnesses we don’t know about? Or he’s tired and burnt out after his first major semi-final, so he has a couple of random losses, and that combined with the unprecedented pressure combines to rock his confidence, and he feels like he can’t play freely, and it just gets worse and worse and worse and every time he thinks he’s getting out of it, he starts thinking too much and loses and it gets worse again?

I have literally been wondering about this for a year, and I’m fed up with it. I don’t care what it is any more. I just want him to stop it. Like, now. Because the way he’s going, he’s going to end up Joe McDisappointment and he is far too good for that. He should be a challenger. He should be a contender. He should be in the top ten. He’s good enough. I know he’s good enough. Honestly, I could just grab him and shake him and yell that into his face until he gets that through his divinely-moulded Croatian head.

…. But then, I know about twenty people who want to do the same thing to me. OK, they wouldn’t call my head ‘divinely-moulded’ – or Croatian, come to that – but the general gist would be the same. You’re good! You can do things! Believe! And frankly, it would just make me want to prove them wrong so they would leave me alone. And then I could go to bed. With a bottle of gin. And a pie. All right, I just talked myself out of being angry with Marin. I suppose I’ll just keep hanging on until he starts winning again, however long it takes. And in the meantime, if he wants to join me in bed with a bottle of gin and a pie, I suppose that would be OK as well.

Er … where was I?

Well done Florian Mayer.

There was a bit of a big-name exodus in Zagreb today in fact. Ivan Dodig took out compatriot Ivan Ljubicic in straight sets, and Richard Gasquet retired after seven games (being in the quarterfinals after Arnaud Clement retired against him).

So Michael Berrer is through to the semi-finals, along with Mayer, Dodig and Garcia-Lopez. Well done all round.

Johannesburg semi-finals, meanwhile, are mainly populated by people you’ve sort of heard of, but only sort of. Two locals, Kevin Anderson and Izak Van der Merwe, are through along with Adrian Mannarino, who’s a yummy Frenchman in a fey sort of way, and Somdev Devvarman, who beat another local, Rik de Vroest.

And in Santiago, Interior Minister-meeting defending champion Thomaz Bellucci lost to certified living Ken doll Fabio Fognini in a fairly thrilling three-set match. Fognini led 4-1 before Bellucci fought back to take it to a tiebreak, only to be taken down by Foggers’ superior speed. Fognini will be joined in the semi-finals by compatriot Potito Starace (yes, Potito Starace has had a better week than Marin), who beat Nalbandian’s conqueror, the suddenly-relevant Horacio ‘Onion’ Zeballos. Also hanging around? Hot Santi Giraldo and Vanilla Robredo. So it’s still a bit sexy.

… And that is what has been happening on the ATP tour.

Posted in florian mayer, ivan ljubicic, johannesburg, marin cilic, richard gasquet, santiago, santiago giraldo, somdev devvarman, zagreb | Tagged: , , , , | 9 Comments »

Mixed Fortunes For Marin.

Posted by gauloises1 on February 3, 2011

Don’t look now – I SAID DON’T LOOK!!! – but Marin won a match in Zagreb, where he’s the two-time defending champion, beating Igor Kunitsyn 76(3) 62. He’ll be facing Florian Mayer in the quarterfinals after Stupid Flowery Girlie Girl beat Radek Stepanek in three sets. Mayer, let us not forget, is the man who dismissed Marin in straight sets at Wimbledon last year before the horrified eyes of yours truly, and he recently beat Nikolay Davydenko in the first round of the Australian Open.

This isn’t going to end well for the Mariners, is what I’m saying.

Marin fared slightly worse in the doubles, as he (somewhat bizarrely) teamed up with sometime(s) coach and tournament director Goran Ivanisevic to lose to Filip Polasek and Ivan Zelenay in straight sets, in a match that was mainly memorable for (i) Goran’s inability to get a serve in the court, (ii) Goran cracking Marin up on changeovers, and (iii) this ridiculous pair of trick shots by Polasek, which you can watch here.

But have some photos anyway, because it’s been scientifically proven that there is nothing more pictorially engrossing than a pair of lanky Croatians playing doubles. Also … Marin actually makes Goran look a little bit fat, or at least three-dimensional.

 

 

Elsewhere, Johannesburg has been mainly notable for the exploits of a couple of Canadians; Milos Raonic, who beat second seed Yen-Hsun Lu before losing to Simon Greul in the second round, and Frank Dancevic, currently ranked 234, who knocked out defending champion Feliciano Lopez in a rain-interrupted match that went to 10-8 in a third set tiebreak.

And in Santiago, the hotness of the tournament took a blow when Juan Monaco lost to hermano Maximo Gonzalez in the first round, but is still ensured after David Nalbandian beat Carlos Berlocq in three and Thomaz Bellucci, defending champion, is into the quarterfinals after Rui Machado. As a reward, he got to meet the Chilean Minister of the Interior.

He looks pretty happy about it, I suppose.

Posted in florian mayer, goran ivanisevic, johannesburg, marin cilic, santiago, thomaz bellucci, zagreb | Tagged: , , , | 6 Comments »

The Week Ahead Now: Johannesburg, Santiago, Zagreb

Posted by gauloises1 on February 1, 2011

Johannesburg

250; Feliciano Lopez defending; draw here.

Top 8 seeds: Feliciano Lopez, Yen-Hsun Lu, Janko Tipsarevic, Kevin Anderson, Florent Serra, Adrian Mannarino, Rainer Schuettler, Michal Przysieny

Points of interest: Adorable Canadian giant Milos Raonic has qualified and will play second seed Yen-Hsun Lu in the first round. Also, that’s once more than I hoped to have to type “Michal Przysieny” in 2011. Twice now.

Santiago

250; Thomaz Bellucci defending; draw here.

Top 8 Seeds: David Nalbandian, Juan Monaco, Thomaz Bellucci, Juan Ignacio Chela, Potito Starace, Tommy Robredo, Fabio Fognini, Santiago Giraldo

Points of interest: David Nalbandian, Juan Monaco, Thomaz Bellucci. Seriously, the South American clay swing? Sexy. Also, Robredo also got through a potentially challenging first round match with Federico Gil. Is Ex-Disco Tommy a thing again? Can he not be?

Zagreb

a.k.a the Marin Cilic peep show

250; Marin Cilic defending; draw here.

Top 8 seeds: Marin Cilic, Ivan Ljubicic, Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, Richard Gasquet, Florian Mayer, Marcel Granollers, Philipp Petzchner, Michael Berrer

Points of interest: Well, it depends. If you think Marin Cilic has to hit rock bottom before he can begin to climb again, then you probably want him to lose in the second round. If you think he has to arrest the slide somewhere, anywhere, then you probably don’t want to watch his second round. He’s got a tough draw to get to the semis; first a  probable match with Igor Kunitsyn, then either the suddenly-scary Florian Mayer (who beat him in straights at Wimbledon last year) or the always-sexy Radek Stepanek. There’s always Richard Gasquet and last year’s finalist Michael Berrer in his half, too. And watch out for Lukas Lacko hanging around the bottom half as well. No insinuation intended.

Also: Marin is playing doubles with Goran. Seriously. Their first match is 6 p.m. local tomorrow.

Posted in ATP week ahead, feliciano lopez, johannesburg, marin cilic, santiago, thomaz bellucci, zagreb | Tagged: , , | 11 Comments »

Zagreb: Marin On Top Again

Posted by gauloises1 on February 8, 2010

Marin Cilic is now 15-1 in 2010, having defended in Zagreb to pick up his second title of 2010 by defeating Michael Berrer 64 67(5) 63.

Giant clown feet! Love it.

A somewhat ragged performance by Marin, who failed to capitalise on repeatedly putting himself in good positions on Berrer’s serve throughout the second set, and made it through the third set on more or less pure adrenaline. More than understandable, though, and he did fantastically to bring home the win in front of his home crowd. I’m stupidly pleased for him.

Hopefully now he can get some good rest, recover and get ready to build on this fantastic start throughout the rest of 2010. And carry on working with Goran, because I need more of this sort of thing:

Much more.

Posted in goran ivanisevic, marin cilic, titlists, zagreb | Tagged: , | 6 Comments »

Zagreb: I Like These Numbers

Posted by gauloises1 on February 7, 2010

Marin Cilic is now 14-1 in 2010, after defeating Jurgen Melzer 76(5) 64 to reach the finals of the PBZ Zagreb.

Knobbly knees.

Does anyone like Jurgen Melzer?

Marin lost to Melzer in the finals of Vienna last year, so it’s good to see him get some revenge. He’ll face Michael Berrer, who beat Philipp Petzschner 76(5) 75. He fears no plosives. Also, there are no pictures of him and I don’t care enough to look really hard. Come on Marin!

Singles – Semi-finals
[1] M Cilic (CRO) d [3] J Melzer (AUT) 76(5) 64
M Berrer (GER) d P Petzschner (GER) 76(6) 75

Doubles – Semi-finals
J Melzer (AUT) / P Petzschner (GER) d [3] M Damm (CZE) / F Polasek (SVK) 76(4) 64

Posted in jurgen melzer, marin cilic, zagreb | Tagged: , | 1 Comment »

Friday’s OOP: Johannesburg, Zagreb

Posted by gauloises1 on February 5, 2010

Can Marin beat the good doctor? Will my newly-minted crush survive another day in Johannesburg? And is there any chance I will finally remember to post the Santiago OOP when I get up in the morning? Stay tuned for this and more.

Johannesburg

Zagreb

Posted in johannesburg, zagreb | Leave a Comment »

Thursday’s Results: Marin, Monfils, Ferru Through

Posted by gauloises1 on February 4, 2010

So one thing that is really making me miss the Australian Open right now? Quality and availability of photos. If the rest of the snappers are anything like the ones I know, they’re still huddled on their sofas getting over jet lag. Fair enough, but come on. The people need photos.

This is about three days old.

Anyway, the week’s action continues to chug along in quite pleasing fashion. In Johannesburg, top seeds Monfils, Ferru and Lopez (your heavy breathing can’t stop him!) are all into the quarterfinals with fairly straightforward wins, as are Newport champion Rajeev Ram and last year’s Chennai finalist, Somdev Devvarman.

In Zagreb, Marin Cilic is yet to show any signs of the post-AO blues, rolling against Jan Hajek and crazy Daniel Koellerer. Unfortunately, he faces Ivo Karlovic next, which is likely to be a bit more tricky. They’re the last Croats standing after Ivan Ljubicic relatively inexplicably lost to Lukas Lacko, meaning the only seed left in the bottom half of the draw is Viktor Troicki after a marathon three-set win for Philipp Petzchner over Benjamin Becker.

Play is still going on in Santiago,  with Gonzo, Granollers, Souza, Martin, Luczak and Schwank into the quarterfinals so far, to be joined by the winners of Pico-Chela (underway as we speak) and Bellucci-Capdeville.

Johannesburg

Singles – Second Round
[1] G Monfils (FRA) d J Ouanna (FRA) 64 75
[2] D Ferrer (ESP) d [Q] F Prpic (SWE) 63 64
[7] Y Lu (TPE) d [WC] R Klaasen (RSA) 64 75
S Devvarman (IND) d T Alves (BRA) 64 61

Doubles – Quarter-finals
R Bopanna (IND) / A Qureshi (PAK) d [2] J Brunstrom (SWE) / J Rojer (AHO) 36 63 9-9 default
[3] E Butorac (USA) / R Ram (USA) d P Amritraj (IND) / J Cerretani (USA) 64 76(6)
[WC] R Klaasen (RSA) / I Van Der Merwe (RSA) vs K Beck (SVK) / H Levy (ISR)
S Darcis (BEL) / X Malisse (BEL) d S Ratiwatana (THA) / S Ratiwatana (THA) 36 64 10-8

Doubles – First Round
[WC] R Klaasen (RSA) / I Van Der Merwe (RSA) d [4] J Coetzee (RSA) / R Wassen (NED) 46 62 10-8

Santiago

Singles – Second Round
[1] F Gonzalez (CHI) d [Q] R Ramirez Hidalgo (ESP) 64 63
A Martin (ESP) d R Mello (BRA) 63 64
M Granollers (ESP) d L Kubot (POL) 64 62
[Q] J Souza (BRA) d P Riba (ESP) 64 64

Doubles – First Round
[2] M Melo (BRA) / B Soares (BRA) d [WC] J Aguilar (CHI) / H Podlipnik-Castillo (CHI) 61 76(4)
P Starace (ITA) / H Zeballos (ARG) d [3] P Cuevas (URU) / M Granollers (ESP) 62 62
[WC] S Gonzalez (MEX) / N Massu (CHI) d B Dabul (ARG) / P Lorenzi (ITA) 61 64
L Arnold Ker (ARG) / J Monaco (ARG) d O Hernandez (ESP) / N Lapentti (ECU) 63 62
L Friedl (CZE) / D Skoch (CZE) d T Bellucci (BRA) / M Daniel (BRA) 64 76(4)

Zagreb

Singles – Second Round
[1] M Cilic (CRO) d D Koellerer (AUT) 62 61
L Lacko (SVK) d [2] I Ljubicic (CRO) 76(3) 57 76(5)
P Petzschner (GER) d [6] B Becker (GER) 16 76(4) 76(6)
[7] I Karlovic (CRO) d [Q] A Sidorenko (FRA) 76(4) 76(8)
M Berrer (GER) d [WC] P Jelenic (CRO) 64 63

Doubles – Quarter-finals
J Melzer (AUT) / P Petzschner (GER) d [1] F Cermak (CZE) / M Mertinak (SVK) 64 64
[3] M Damm (CZE) / F Polasek (SVK) d M Kohlmann (GER) / A Peya (AUT) 64 62
B Becker (GER) / R Schuettler (GER) d C Kas (GER) / E Korolev (KAZ) 64 60
A Clement (FRA) / O Rochus (BEL) d [4] R Hutchins (GBR) / J Kerr (AUS) 63 61

Posted in david ferrer, johannesburg, marin cilic, philipp petzchner, santiago, zagreb | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Wednesday’s OOP: Jo’burg, Zagreb

Posted by gauloises1 on February 3, 2010

Hopefully I will remember to update this post with the Santiago OOP tomorrow …

Johannesburg

Zagreb

Posted in johannesburg, zagreb | Leave a Comment »

Tuesday Results: Tipsy, Malisse Out

Posted by gauloises1 on February 3, 2010

Did I say things were happening? They are. Not very interesting things, but things. The top four seeds were all in action in Johannesburg today; La Monf and Ferru fairly breezed through over Hrbaty and Beck respectively, but Marco Chiudinelli was ousted by Jamaica’s finest, Dustin Brown, and Feliciano Lopez had a bit of work to do before overcoming  Benjamin Balleret 63 in the third.

The biggest news of the day in Zagreb was fifth seed Janko Tipsarevic falling to Michael Berrer in straight sets, and … that’s it. Daniel Koellerer won a match, so it’s a safe bet some ridiculous behaviour was encountered. Santiago lost seeds Simon Greul and Horacio Zeballos to Souza and Kubot respectively, and Nose Job did well to put away Nico Lapentti 61 in the third. Gonzo’s expected on court a bit later on … and have a photo of Pico, because he beat Massu yesterday and I didn’t get a chance to talk about it until now.

Yay.

Johannesburg

Singles – First Round
[1] G Monfils (FRA) d D Hrbaty (SVK) 62 61
[2] D Ferrer (ESP) d K Beck (SVK) 61 75
[3] F Lopez (ESP) d [Q] B Balleret (MON) 61 67(5) 63
D Brown (JAM) d [4] M Chiudinelli (SUI) 64 36 64
S Devvarman (IND) d [6] X Malisse (BEL) 64 62
[7] Y Lu (TPE) d J Nieminen (FIN) 63 62
J Ouanna (FRA) d H Levy (ISR) 76(4) 62
[WC] R Klaasen (RSA) d D Guez (FRA) 64 63
B Phau (GER) d [Q] F Wolmarans (RSA) 64 75
[WC] I Van Der Merwe (RSA) d [Q] N Okun (ISR) 76(5) 76(2)
T Alves (BRA) d O Dolgopolov Jr. (UKR) 57 62 63
[Q] F Prpic (SWE) d I Navarro (ESP) 63 75

Doubles – First Round
[2] J Brunstrom (SWE) / J Rojer (AHO) d R de Voest (RSA) / Y Lu (TPE) 63 64
[3] E Butorac (USA) / R Ram (USA) d P Marx (GER) / I Zelenay (SVK) 76(6) 63
P Amritraj (IND) / J Cerretani (USA) d [WC] R Roelofse (RSA) / N Scholtz (RSA) 64 61

Santiago

Singles – First Round
[1] F Gonzalez (CHI) d O Hernandez (ESP) 62 61
[3] T Bellucci (BRA) d N Lapentti (ECU) 36 61 61
R Mello (BRA) d [4] P Cuevas (URU) 76(5) 63
L Kubot (POL) d [5] H Zeballos (ARG) 36 75 63
[6] J Acasuso (ARG) d [WC] H Podlipnik-Castillo (CHI) 61 61
[Q] J Souza (BRA) d [7] S Greul (GER) 36 64 76(5)
E Schwank (ARG) d P Lorenzi (ITA) 46 76(3) 63
P Riba (ESP) d S Ventura (ESP) 63 75
P Capdeville (CHI) d [WC] C Saavedra-Corvalan (CHI) 46 62 61
[Q] D Marrero (ESP) d [Q] J Aranguren (ARG) 76(4) 26 76(2)
[Q] R Ramirez Hidalgo (ESP) d V Crivoi (ROU) 64 62

Doubles – First Round
[1] L Kubot (POL) / O Marach (AUT) d J Chela (ARG) / S Ventura (ESP) 63 76(7)
B Dabul (ARG) / P Lorenzi (ITA) vs [WC] S Gonzalez (MEX) / N Massu (CHI) (postponed until Wednesday)
S Greul (GER) / P Luczak (AUS) d R Ramirez Hidalgo (ESP) / E Schwank (ARG)  76(3) 64

Zagreb

Singles – First Round
M Berrer (GER) d [5] J Tipsarevic (SRB) 76(5) 63
[6] B Becker (GER) d [Q] A Vinciguerra (SWE) 16 61 76(4)
P Petzschner (GER) d C Rochus (BEL) 67(4) 63 61
L Lacko (SVK) d D Istomin (UZB) 62 22 ret. (right hamstring)
D Koellerer (AUT) d A Golubev (KAZ) 63 36 63
[WC] P Jelenic (CRO) d [Q] I Bozoljac (SRB) 76(6) 75
[Q] A Sidorenko (FRA) d [Q] R Bemelmans (BEL) 76(5) 36 63

Doubles – First Round
C Kas (GER) / E Korolev (KAZ) d [2] J Knowle (AUT) / R Lindstedt (SWE) 63 76(6)
A Clement (FRA) / O Rochus (BEL) d J Delgado (GBR) / F Moser (GER) 46 75 10-8
J Melzer (AUT) / P Petzschner (GER) d D Istomin (UZB) / A Motti (ITA) 46 75 10-8

Posted in feliciano lopez, johannesburg, juan monaco, santiago, zagreb | Tagged: , | 6 Comments »