Nadal wins 16th Grandslam title at US Open

They did the time warp again on Sunday. It has been that sort of season in men’s tennis. Scar tissue? What scar tissue? Creaky knees, wrists and confidence? Banish the demons and roll back the years.

So it went at the Australian Open, the French Open and Wimbledon, and so it went at the United States Open, the fourth and final Grand Slam tournament, as Rafael Nadal completed a 50-50 split of the 2017 loot with Roger Federer.

Nadal, back at No. 1 at age 31, underscored his resurgence by defeating Kevin Anderson of South Africa, 6-3, 6-3, 6-4, in a U.S. Open singles final on Sunday that was no surprise at this late stage of this tennis revival.

“I was surprised in January — now I am not that much surprised, no?” said Nadal, left eyebrow, as ever, arching, referring to his Australian Open final against Federer.

Nadal claimed his third U.S. Open championship and his first since 2013. It was also his first title in a hardcourt tournament since winning in Doha, Qatar, in January 2014

But Nadal, with his innate competitive streak, is much more about confronting today’s challenges than obsessing over the past, and this triumphant season has been a testimony to his uncommon resilience and drive.

Like the 36-year-old Federer, his past and present rival, Nadal has re-emerged at the highest level after an injury layoff. Like Federer, Nadal has won two Grand Slam singles titles this year.

It was also the first time in any of his U.S. Open, Wimbledon or Australian Open title runs that Nadal had played none of the other members of the so-called Big Five: Federer, Djokovic, Murray or Wawrinka.

He did face del Potro, a former U.S. Open champion now ranked 28th, in the semifinals.

“I consider del Potro as top level, but the reality is, we had an easy draw until then,” Toni Nadal said.

Source: NY Times

Bautista Agut captures Winston-Salem title

Top seed Roberto Bautista Agut made good on his quest to avenge last year’s final loss with a 6-4 6-4 win over Bosnia’s Damir Dzumhur to clinch the Winston-Salem Open on Saturday.

Bautista Agut, who fell to compatriot Pablo Carreno Busta in last year’s decider, broke Dzumhur five times and wrapped up the match in 91 minutes to capture his second title of the season and sixth of his career.

The Spaniard raced out to a 4-1 lead in the first set and 3-1 in the second before a determined Dzumhur, who this week became Bosnia’s first player to reach an ATP Tour final, clawed his way back each time.

But Bautista Agut, who failed to drop a set all week in the final U.S. Open tune-up, ultimately proved too strong and captured the title on his first match point when Dzumhur sent a forehand long.

Bautista Agut, who has reached the fourth round of a grand slam seven times in his last nine attempts, will now shift his focus to the U.S. Open, where he will face Italy’s Andreas Seppi in first round action on Monday.

Source: Reuters

Dimitrov wins first master title

After two months of injuries and poor form, Nick Kyrgios will contest the US Open on the back of a near career-best week. The Australian lost the Cincinnati Masters final to Grigor Dimitrov in straight sets but claimed the scalp of world No1 Rafael Nadal in reaching Sunday’s decider.

It is hard to believe just over two weeks ago Kyrgios was forced to retire hurt down 6-3, 3-0 to world No105 Tennys Sandgren due to a shoulder injury in Washington DC.

Kyrgios went down to seventh seed Dimitrov 6-3, 7-5 on Sunday, unable to maintain the form which saw him beat Nadal in the quarter-finals. But he heads to Flushing Meadows after wins over former world No.3 David Ferrer in the final four and world No13 David Goffin, Alexandr Dolgopolov and Ivo Karlovic in the early rounds.

“Looking back from where I was … I would have never thought I would have had my first Masters 1000 event final,” Kyrgios said. “So I’m pretty happy with the result. From where I was to here, it’s just been amazing.

“First round was really a struggle and obviously got through a tough one with Dolgopolov. Gradually, I just feel back to where I should feel on a tennis court. I wasn’t enjoying it at all, didn’t want to be out there. External things were affecting how I was feeling. It really didn’t make sense. Right now, I lost today but I feel great. I feel great where I’m at right now.”



Isner wins first title in nearly two years

John Isner has ended his title drought by taking the Newport Hall of Fame Championships. Isner defeated first-time ATP finalist and grass court specialist Matthew Ebden 6-3, 7-6 for the win.

Isner played a terrific tournament in which he did not lose a set nor see his serve broken. His final opponent, Ebden, gave him his closest battle by winning nine games and taking the 6’10 American to a second set tiebreak, but Isner was not to be denied.

Rublev wins first career crown

#NextGenATP Russian Andrey Rublev captured his first ATP World Tour title on Sunday as he defeated fourth seed Paolo Lorenzi 6-4, 6-2 in the final of the Plava Laguna Croatia Open Umag.

“It’s amazing. I have no words to explain it, especially after this tough week,” said Rublev. “Now I’m here and it’s amazing.”

It caps a dream week for the 19-year-old Rublev, who had beaten third seed and defending champion Fabio Fognini in the quarter-finals and home hope Ivan Dodig in the last four to reach his first ATP World Tour final. The Moscow native had fallen in the final round of qualifying, but earned a spot in the main draw as a lucky loser when Borna Coric was forced to withdraw.

Rublev is the seventh lucky loser to win an ATP World Tour title and the first to do so since Rajeev Ram triumphed in Newport in 2009. The right-hander earns 250 Emirates ATP Rankings points, which will take him to a new career-high on Monday.

Australian great Mervyn Rose dies

Tributes are being paid to Australian tennis great Mervyn Rose, a two-time major singles champion, who has died aged 87.

Rose, a star of the 1950s prior to the open era, won the Australian Championship in 1954 and captured the French Championship title four years later.

The Coffs Harbour-born Rose also claimed the Davis Cup twice (1951, 1957) as part of Australia’s squad.

Rose, who was ranked three in the world when an unofficial rankings list was compiled in 1958, also claimed doubles titles at the Australian and US Championships, as well as Wimbledon.

He was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2001 and Australian Hall of Fame a year later.


Sugita winner Antalya

Yuichi Sugita was a man on a mission on Saturday at the Antalya Open, downing Adrian Mannarino 6-1, 7-6(4) for his first ATP World Tour title.

Sugita joined an exclusive club in lifting his maiden trophy, becoming just the third Japanese player to ever win on the circuit, alongside Shuzo Matsuoka and Kei Nishikori. He is also the fourth first-time winner on the ATP World Tour this year, needing one hour and 29 minutes to fight past Mannarino on a searing hot Saturday afternoon in Antalya.

Source: ATP

Federer wins record 8th Wimbledon title

Roger Federer as ruthless as he had to be – and as lovely to watch as ever – took only an hour and 41 minutes to win his eighth Wimbledon title, 14 years after his first, and left his wounded opponent, Marin Cilic, in a bedazzled heap on Centre Court.

“It’s magical,” Federer said courtside. “I can’t believe it yet. It’s too much. I kept on believing and dreaming and here I am today for my eighth title. I hope to be back to defend it next year.”

Those were sweet words for his millions of followers, who must secretly wonder when the fairytale will end.

It is the Swiss’s 19th slam title, his second of the year after beating Rafael Nadal in the Australian Open final, and, there is no reason to say that the youngest 35-year-old in sport cannot go on to win the final major of the year, at Flushing Meadows in September, and finish 2017 where he has spent so much time, as No1 in the world.

It would be a Federer grand slam, of sorts, with an asterisk beside it for missing the French Open, where Nadal triumphed for the 10th time. The Spaniard did not drop a set in Paris. Federer did not drop a set on Church road. Those are statements of dominance on their preferred surfaces that are impossible to deny.

Cilic, a virtual one-legged bystander once his left foot gave up on him after the first set, said tearfully: “I’ve never given up in all my career. I gave my best, and that is all I could do I had an amazing journey here, played the best tennis of my life.”

Federer paid tribute to his stricken foe. “It is cruel some times but he fought well and he is a hero,” the Swiss said. “He should be really proud.”

Playing tennis every bit as good as when in his pomp, Federer might yet go on to match Nadal’s French Open La Decima at the All England Club. He said before the final he feels no urge to retire and with his peers Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic showing distinct signs of frailty, he will very much fancy his chances.

First clay title ever for Tsonga in Lyon

Second-seeded Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France won his first title on clay when he defeated Tomas Berdych 7-6 (2), 7-5 in the Lyon Open final on Saturday.

Tsonga dropped just three points behind his first serve, hit 13 aces, and saved all two break points to down his third-seeded Czech opponent.

Tsonga’s victory came a day before the French Open starts in Paris. No Frenchman has won the Roland Garros title since Yannick Noah lifted the Mousquetaires Cup in 1983.

Following the birth of his first child and a right shoulder injury, Tsonga played only four matches in two months before Lyon. He won back-to-back indoor titles in February in Rotterdam and Marseille, but had to withdraw from his second-round match in Madrid and from the Rome tournament because of his injury.