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Mondays with Bob Greene

 

STARS

Alexander Zverev beat Kevin Anderson 6-4 6-4 to win the Citi Open men’s singles in Washington, DC, USA

Sam Querrey beat Thanasi Kokkinakis 6-3 3-6 6-2 to win the Abierto Mexicano de Tenis Mifel presentado por Cinemex in Los Cabos, Mexico

Madison Keys beat Coco Vandeweghe 7-6 (4) 6-4 to win the Bank of the West Classic in Stanford, California, USA

Philipp Kohlschreiber beat Joao Sousa 6-3 6-4 to win the Generali Open in Kitzbühel, Austria

Ekaterina Makarova beat Julia Goerges 3-6 7-6 (2) 6-0 to win the Citi Open women’s singles in Washington, DC, USA

Lu Yen-Hsun beat Evgeny Donskoy 6-3 6-4 to win the International Challenger Chengdu in Chengdu, China

Filip Krajinovic beat Salvatore Caruso 6-3 6-2 to win the Thindown Challenger in Biella, Italy

 

SAYING

“This is obviously extremely disappointing, but I’m already looking ahead and planning my recovery. I love this sport and I will work hard to get back to my top level and play many more years. I will see you all in 2018.” – Stan Wawrinka, announcing he will undergo knee surgery and be sidelined for the rest of this year.

“It hasn’t been the easiest last couple of months, but this means a lot to me.” – Madison Keys, who won the Bank of the West Classic, her first title of 2017 after undergoing wrist surgery earlier this year and missing two months.

“Hopefully this is just a small step.” – Thanasi Kokkinakis, who reached his first ATP World Tour final before losing to Sam Querrey in Los Cabos, Mexico.

“I am disappointed that injury is keeping me from the tennis court once again, and I will work as hard as I can to return to the game I love as soon as possible.” – Maria Sharapova, announcing her withdrawal from the Rogers Cup women’s tournament in Toronto, Canada, because of an arm injury.

“We’ve known each other for a long time but we never had the chance to play together. It’s a pleasure to play with a friend and it feels even better if you end the tournament in this way.” – Pablo Cuevas, after teaming with Guillermo Duran to win the Generali Open doubles.

“It goes without saying what my dad has done for Serena and I, and changing the game of tennis, and for what he’s done for the sport, too. I’m forever grateful. I’m so excited for his honor.” – Venus Williams, on her father Richard being inducted into the American Tennis Association’s Hall of Fame as a coach.

 

SURGE TO VICTORY

Once Alexander Zverev overcame a first-round hurdle, the German dominated to win the Citi Open and join Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal with four or more titles in 2017. Zverev lost his opening set in the hard-court tournament before beating Jordan Thompson in three sets. After that, it was a breeze, wrapping up the title against South Africa’s Kevin Anderson. It was Zverev’s first title on an outdoor hard court. He broke Anderson early in each set and never faced a break point on his own serve. “It didn’t feel like he gave me a whole lot,” Anderson said. “I thought he served very well. Outside of the two games I got broken, I was pretty happy with the way I played. But with him playing like that, I couldn’t afford to give up those two serve games.” Zverev also won this year on clay in Rome and Munich and on an indoor hard court in Montpellier, France. Nadal has also won four titles this year, while Federer has won five.

 

SMASHING RETURN

In a battle of big-hitters, Madison Keys showed that she can hold her own. In an all-American final, Keys won her third career title, beating Coco Vandeweghe in straight sets at the Bank of West Classic. “This whole tournament for me has made me feel so great,” Keys said. “This whole year has been kind of rough.” That’s an understatement. Following her second wrist surgery, the 22-year-old Keys missed the first two months of the season. She had won just five matches all season coming into the week at Stanford, California. But she won her last sets, knocking off Wimbledon champion Garbiñe Muguruza in the semifinals before beating Vandeweghe for the title. “It hasn’t been the easiest last couple of months, but this means a lot to me,” Keys said after winner her first title of 2017. The two held serve through the first set, Keys capturing the tiebreak with a forehand winner down the line. They continued to hold serve until Keys finally broke Vandeweghe in the ninth game of the second set. She jumped out front 40-0 on her own serve and closed out the win with a cross-court forehand winner. It was Keys’ third career singles title and first on hard court.

Vandeweghe didn’t leave Stanford without a victory. She closed out the week by teaming with fellow American Abigail Spears to win the doubles title, stopping Alizé Cornet and Alicja Rosolska 6-2 6-3.

 

SEÑOR SAM UNBEATABLE

Sam Querrey has been unbeatable in Mexico this year. The American stopped Australian Thanasi Kokkinakis in three sets to capture the Abierto Mexicano de Tenis Mifel in Los Cabos. In March, he won in Acapulco, defeating Rafael Nadal. “It’s really exciting to win here,” Querrey said after his latest triumph. “I felt like I played really well.” Seeded second, Querrey grabbed 4-1 lead in the opening set before Kokkinakis forced a third set. The American won the first two games, then broke Kokkinakis once more in the final game to prevail. “I think the last couple of months have been the best I’ve played and if I can keep this going the rest of the year, it’ll be my best year on tour yet,” said Querrey, who reached the semifinals at Wimbledon last month. This marks just the second time in his career that Querrey has won more than one title in a season. Kokkinakis also had a career-best week. It was the first time the 21-year-old had reached an ATP World Tour quarterfinal, let alone a title match. “I’m obviously disappointed at the moment,” Kokkinakis said. “I definitely thought I could have done better, but I have to look at the positives in that this is my best week on tour. … The good news is that … I’m still having tight matches with some of the best players in the world.”

 

SEIZES EIGHTH TITLE

Philipp Kohlschreiber ended his clay court season with his eighth career ATP World Tour title. The German had no problems stopping Portugal’s Joao Sousa to win the Generali Open. Kohlschreiber came from behind in both sets to post his first title since May 2016. He recovered from a break down in the opening set by winning four straight games. He then trailed 3-1 in the second set before another four-game romp. “It was an amazing week for me,” the 33-year-old champion said. “I never expected to win this title when the tournament started.” It is the fourth consecutive year in which Kohlschreiber has won an ATP World Tour title. “Even if I lost today it was a great week,” Sousa said. “I haven’t been playing that well for a while, so I’m very happy with how I played here in Kitzbühel. Philipp was the better man today and deserves to win the title.”

 

SEVERE HEAT

High heat and humidity in Washington, DC, USA, took its toll on Simona Halep. The top seed retired from her quarterfinal match against Ekaterina Makarova after being treated by a doctor for heat illness. In her previous match, Halep dropped the opening set before rallying to eliminate Mariana Duque-Mariño. Against Makarova, the Romanian dominated the opening set 6-2. But then she began to slow down and play increasingly more sluggishly in the balmy heat. Makarova won 6-4 to level the match, then broke Halep to begin the final set. That’s when Halep called for the tournament doctor and ended her Citi Open bid. “In the end it worked for me, but I’m so sad we weren’t able to finish the game,” Makarova said. “But this is Washington. Here it’s always hot like this.”

 

STAN SIDELINED

Stan Wawrinka won’t be defending his US Open title later this month. The Swiss ace will undergo knee surgery and sit out the rest of the year. He joined US Open runner-up Novak Djokovic on the sidelines until next year. “This was the only solution to make sure I will be able to compete at the top level for many more years,” Wawrinka said in a statement on Facebook.  The 32-year-old Wawrinka was upset in the first round at Wimbledon, and now admits the knee injury was hampering him when he fell to Russian Daniil Medvedev. Besides the Big Four – Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Djokovic and Andy Murray – Wawrinka is the only active player who has won more than one major men’s singles titles. Besides his US Open victory, Wawrinka won the Australian Open in 2014 and the French Open in 2015. He reached the French Open final again this year, where he was thrashed by Nadal.

 

SICK CALL

World number one Andy Murray has withdrawn from the Rogers Cup in Montreal because of a hip injury. “I am sad to be missing the tournament in Montreal because I have many great memories from my time in Canada,” he wrote on the tournament’s website. “I am doing everything I can to return as quickly as possible.” After losing his Wimbledon quarterfinal match to American Sam Querrey, Murray was told by a leading hip surgeon that he would be 50-50 to play at the US Open, which begins later this month. If Rafael Nadal reaches the semifinals at Montreal, he would supplant Murray atop the ATP World Tour Rankings.

Marin Cilic, the 2014 US Open champion and runner-up at Wimbledon last month, also has pulled out of the Rogers Cup. Cilic said he suffered an abductor injury in his Wimbledon final loss to Roger Federer.

A sore left arm has caused Maria Sharapova to pull out of the Rogers Cup women’s event in Toronto. “I am so sorry to be missing Rogers Cup this year,” the Russian said in a statement issued by Tennis Canada. “I am so appreciative to the tournament for the wild card and my fans in Toronto for their support.” It’s the same injury that forced Sharapova to pull out of her second-round match at the Bank of the West Classic. That as he fourth tournament back after she served a 15-month doping ban. It was the second time in three months that Sharapova’s comeback has been interrupted by injury. She also retired from her second-round match at the Italian Open in May after injuring her left thigh.

 

SECOND TITLE

Teymuraz Gabashvili won his singles match and teamed with Ken Skupski to capture the doubles and lead the Orange County Breakers to their second World TeamTennis championship, downing the defending champion San Diego Aviators 22-18. Playing in Carlsbad, California, USA, the Breakers began with Yanina Wickmayer defeating Naomi Broady 5-2. The Aviators won the women’s doubles and mixed doubles, but Gabashvili an Skupski defeated Rajeev Ram and Raven Klaasen 5-2 and Gabashvili beat Ram 5-4. Broady and Darija Jurak won the women’s doubles 5-3 over Andreja Klepac and Wickmayer, while San Diego’s mixed doubles team of Klaasen and Jurak stopped Skupski and Klepac 5-4. The Breakers also won the 2004 WTT title when they were known as the Newport Beach Breakers.

 

SOME CHANGES MADE

The International Tennis Federation (ITF) board won some and lost some of their hoped-for changes to the Davis Cup competition. The ITF’s annual general meeting kept the Davis Cup singles matches best-of-five sets, turning down the board’s recommendation that it be changed to best-of-three sets. While the motion received support from nearly 64 percent of the member nations, reforms require a two-thirds majority in the voting. The members did agree that finalists in both Davis Cup and Fed Cup will be guaranteed the choice of hosting their first-round tie the following year.

 

SET FOR INDUCTION

The father of Serena and Venus Williams will be the first inductee into the American Tennis Association’s (ATA) Hall of Fame when ceremonies are held this week. Richard Williams also was inducted into the Black Tennis Hall of Fame in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, last week. Both Williams sisters have been ranked number one in the world during their career and have combined for 30 Grand Slam tournament singles titles – an Open Era record 23 by Serena – as well as 14 major doubles titles, two Olympic gold medals in singles and three Olympic gold medals in doubles. “(Richard) went from scratch, not knowing anything about the game other than seeing the pot he wanted to bring monetarily … and he learned the game and he taught it to his daughters,” said Dr. Franklyn Scott, ATA President of Education. The oldest African-American sports organization in the nation, the ATP is celebrating 100 years of dedication to the African-American tennis community.

 

STOLEN TROPHIES

Thieves broke into the home of Italian Roberta Vinci and stole her tennis trophies, the 2015 US Open runner-up said. “Unfortunately, a few days ago a group of thieves entered my house in Taranto and stole valuable objects … including some objects for which the economic value is not even comparable to their emotional value to me: the trophies that I won over my career,” the 34-year-old player wrote on Instagram. Vinci has won 10 singles titles and 25 doubles titles on the WTA tour and has helped Italy win four Fed Cup championships. In her Instagram statement, Vinci said the thieves could not take away “the memories, the tears, the sweat, the effort, the dedication, the smiles and the sacrifices made to achieve these goals.”

 

STOPPED BY INJURY

Australian Nick Kyrgios was booed when he retired from his Citi Open match against American Tenny Sandgren. It was the third straight tournament in which the 22-year-old has retired during a match. He was trailing Sandgren 6-3 3-0 when he retired with a shoulder injury. At Wimbledon, he retired from his first-round match with a chronic hip injury. “Just struggling, mentally, physically,” Kyrgios said.

 

STRONG WOMEN

Because Serena Williams won the Australian Open while pregnant, her fiancée believes their baby will be a girl. “She remarked that she feels like it has to be a girl because everything that little baby went through and handled like a champ, only a woman could be strong enough to take on,” Reddit founder Alexis Ohanian said on Jimmy Kimmel Live. “If anything, though, it’s really just reinforced how just amazing and strong and powerful and awesome women are.” Ohanian said that although they believe it will be a girl, they are not planning on learning the sex of the baby until it is born.

 

SNUBBED

The All India Tennis Association (AITA) is being slammed by one of its top players. Rohan Bopanna is angry with the AITA for not nominating for this year’s Arjuna Awards, which is given to the nation’s top sportsperson for perseverance and patience. Instead, the association picked Saketh Myneni, saying he was selected because he won “medals for the country.” The 29-year-old Myneni won the mixed doubles gold in the 2014 Asian Games in South Korea and silver in the men’s doubles. “I want to take this platform to congratulate Saketh Myneni on receiving this award,” Bopanna said. “I could be more proud …” But Bopanna said he believes the AITA should have nominated him because of his winning the French Open mixed doubles in June. Hironmoy Chatterjee, AITA secretary general, said Bopanna was “ignorant” of the rules and that Bopanna will be considered for the Arjuna Award next year “on the strength of his 2017 French Open showing.”

 

SAD NEWS

Katherine (Kay) McEnroe, the mother of John and Patrick McEnroe, is dead at the age of 81. She died only weeks after being diagnosed with cancer and just six months after her husband, attorney John McEnroe Sr.  Both traveled the world attending matches their sons were involved in, including Davis Cup. In addition to her tennis playing sons, she is survived by a third son, Mark, who gave up the game while attending Stanford University. A memorial service celebrating Kay McEnroe’s life will be held September 15 at the Cosmopolitan Club on Manhattan’s East Side.

 

SHARED PERFORMANCES

Biella: Attila Balazs and Fabiano De Paula beat Johan Brunstrom and Dino Marcan 5-7 6-4 10-4 (match tiebreak)

Chengdu: N.Sriran Balaji and Vishnu Vardhan beat Hsieh Cheng-Peng and Peng Hsien-Yin 6-3 6-4

Kitzbühel: Pablo Cuevas and Guillermo Duran beat Hans Podlipnik-Castillo and Andrei Vasilevski 6-4 4-6 12-10 (match tiebreak)

Los Cabos: Juan Sebastian Cabal and Treat Huey beat Sergio Galdos and Roberto Maytin 6-2 6-3

Stanford: Abigail Spears and Coco Vandeweghe beat Alizé Cornet and Alicja Rosolska 6-2 6-3

Washington (men): Henri Kontinen and John Peers beat Lukasz Kubot and Marcelo Melo 7-6 (5) 6-4

Washington (women): Shuko Aoyama and Renata Voracova beat Eugenie Bouchard and Sloane Stephens 6-3 6-2

 

SURFING

Montreal: www.rogerscup.com/

 

Toronto: www.couperogers.com/en/

Aptos: www.seascapesportsclub.com/

Cincinnati: www.wsopen.com/

Santo Domingo: http://labocha.org/es-es/

Vancouver: http://vanopen.com/

 

TOURNAMENTS THIS WEEK

MEN

$4,662,300 Coupe Rogers, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, hard

$150,000 China International Challenger Jinan 2017, Jinan, China, hard

$100,000 Nordic Naturals Challenger, Aptos, California, USA, hard

 

WOMEN

$2,434,389 Rogers Cup presented by National Bank, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, hard

 

TOURNAMENTS NEXT WEEK

MEN

$5,627,305 Western & Southern Open, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA, hard

$125,000 Milex Open At La Bocha, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, clay

$100,000 Odlum Brown Vanopen, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, hard

 

WOMEN

$2,513,000 Western & Southern Open, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA, hard

$100,000 Odlum Brown Vanopen, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, hard

 

Madison Keys

Madison Keys



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About Admin
Randy Walker is a communications and marketing specialist, writer, tennis historian and the managing partner of New Chapter Media – www.NewChapterMedia.com. He was a 12-year veteran of the U.S. Tennis Association’s marketing and communications division where he worked as the press officer for 22 U.S. Davis Cup ties, three Olympic tennis teams and was an integral part of USTA media services team for 14 US Opens. He is the author of the books ON THIS DAY IN TENNIS HISTORY and THE DAYS OF ROGER FEDERER

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