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#NextGenATP Opelka Fights To See Another Day In Paris

  • Posted: May 22, 2018

#NextGenATP Opelka Fights To See Another Day In Paris

American fell in final round of qualifying last year

#NextGenATP American Reilly Opelka moved to within two wins of qualifying for Roland Garros for the first time on Tuesday. The 20-year-old right-hander beat Dutchman Tallon Griekspoor 7-5, 6-3 to advance to the second round of qualifying.

Opelka won his first clay-court title on Sunday at the BNP Paribas Primrose, an ATP Challenger Tour tournament in Bordeaux, France. He lost in the final round of Roland Garros qualifying last year. The 6’10” Opelka will next meet 25-year-old Jozef Kovalik of Slovakia, who beat 30th seed Alexey Vatutin of Russia 2-6, 6-1, 6-3.

You May Also Like: Opelka Blasts To First Clay-Court Crown In Bordeaux

Latvian Ernests Gulbis, who beat Roger Federer en route to the 2014 Roland Garros semi-finals (l. to Djokovic), also advanced on a rain-shortened day of qualifying in Paris. Gulbis beat French veteran Stephane Robert 7-5, 6-4.

Last week gave me some confidence, making the semis in Bordeaux [l. to Opelka], so maybe now I can show some better tennis in the majors again,” Gulbis told

Sixth seed Rogerio Dutra Silva of Brazil beat Christian Garin of Chile 7-6(6), 6-4; 28th seed Henri Laaksonen of Switzerland beat American Bradley Klahn 4-6, 7-6(3), 6-4; and Spanish veteran Tommy Robredo, who captured his first title at any level in five years on Sunday at the Lisboa Belem Open, an ATP Challenger Tour event, fell to 20th seed Simone Bolelli of Italy 6-4, 6-4.

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Johnson Escapes In Upset-Filled Day In Geneva

  • Posted: May 22, 2018

Johnson Escapes In Upset-Filled Day In Geneva

Gojowczyk defeats fourth seed Ferrer in 75 minutes

Houston champion Steve Johnson avoided the upset bug on Tuesday, a day filled with them at the Banque Eric Sturdza Geneva Open. The sixth-seeded American beat Romanian Marius Copil 7-6(4), 6-3.

Johnson hit 11 aces and escaped danger regularly on his serve, saving eight of nine break points. Johnson will face Czech right-hander Lukas Rosol in the second round. Rosol saved two match points to beat countryman Jiri Vesely 2-6, 7-6(6), 7-6(4). The 32-year-old trailed by a set and 4/6 in the second-set tie-break before rallying to victory in two hours and 15 minutes.

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German Peter Gojowczyk picked up his 15th win of the season by beating fourth seed David Ferrer 6-2, 6-4. Gojowczyk hit eight aces and saved both break points his Spanish opponent created during the 75-minute match. The German will meet Italy’s Andreas Seppi or Spain’s Bernabe Zapata Miralles for a place in the semi-finals.

Marton Fucsovics of Hungary also defeated seeded opposition from Spain, racing past fifth seed Albert Ramos-Vinolas 6-1, 6-2. Fucsovics won 70 per cent of first-serve points and saved all five break points he faced in the 80-minute first-round clash. The Hungarian No. 1 will meet #NextGenATP American Frances Tiafoe in the second round.

Two-time defending champion Stan Wawrinka was scheduled to make his return to Geneva on Tuesday against Jared Donaldson of the U.S., but rain postponed their second-round match until Wednesday.

View Wednesday’s Geneva Schedule

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Thiem Breezes Through Lyon Opener

  • Posted: May 22, 2018

Thiem Breezes Through Lyon Opener

Estoril champion Sousa stunned by No. 334 Horansky

Dominic Thiem notched his 26th victory of the season on Tuesday to start his Open Parc Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Lyon. The top-seeded Thiem beat Spaniard Roberto Carballes Baena, Ecuador Open titlist, 6-2, 6-4 in 71 minutes.

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Thiem won 80 per cent of his service points and didn’t face a break point in the second-round matchup. The Austrian and nine-time ATP World Tour champion will next meet another Spaniard in Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, who beat France’s Calvin Hemery 7-6(4), 6-3 to reach his third tour-level quarter-final of the season.

Garcia-Lopez, who also reached quarter-finals on clay in Buenos Aires and Sao Paulo, won 81 per cent of service points and saved all three break points faced to advance.

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Slovakian qualifier Filip Horansky secured his maiden ATP World Tour victory, upsetting Millennium Estoril Open champion Joao Sousa 6-4, 3-6, 6-4. The World No. 334, competing in his first ATP World Tour main draw, converted five of his six break points to beat the Portuguese No. 1 in one hour and 52 minutes. Horansky will face Serbia’s Dusan Lajovic for a spot in the quarter-finals.

#NextGenATP American Taylor Fritz continued his fine form this season, notching his ninth win of the season to reach the second round. Fritz, in fifth place in the ATP Race to Milan, beat Aussie Matthew Ebden 6-4, 6-2 in 55 minutes. The 20-year-old will meet third seed Jack Sock for a place in the quarter-finals. Kazakhstan’s Mikhail Kukushkin also progressed to the second round, beating wild card Gregoire Barrere 6-2, 6-3 in 72 minutes.

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Evans wins in Loughborough but Broady loses in French Open qualifying

  • Posted: May 22, 2018

Britain’s Dan Evans reached the second round of the ATP Challenger event in Loughborough as he continues his comeback from a 12-month drugs ban.

The 27-year-old beat second seed Max Purcell 6-4 6-2 in the first round.

Evans is playing his second tournament since being suspended after testing positive for cocaine in April 2017.

Elsewhere, British number four Liam Broady lost in the first round of French Open qualifying, going down 7-6 (10-8) 7-6 (7-4) to Czech Zdenek Kolar.

Evans lost in the first round of the Glasgow Trophy last month and has already won three qualifying matches in Loughborough to reach the main draw.

Evans is currently ranked 1,194th in the world, having reached a career high of 41 in 2017.

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French Open: Serena Williams will not be seeded at Roland Garros

  • Posted: May 22, 2018

Former world number one Serena Williams will not be seeded for this year’s French Open.

The 36-year-old made her comeback in March, six months after giving birth, and her ranking has fallen to 453.

She had early defeats at Indian Wells and Miami as she has struggled for form and pulled out of clay-court events in Madrid and Rome.

The French Tennis Federation says the 32 women’s seeds at Roland Garros will be “based on the WTA ranking” .

“Consequently, (the seeds) will reflect this week’s world ranking,” the organisers added.

Williams has won the French Open, which takes place from 27 May to 10 June, three times.

The 23-time Grand Slam champion’s last appearance on clay was in the final at Roland Garros in 2016 when she lost to Garbine Muguruza.

  • Watson ends four-month WTA Tour singles losing streak
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Watson ends four-month WTA Tour singles losing streak

  • Posted: May 22, 2018

Heather Watson ended her four-month WTA Tour singles losing streak with victory over Kateryna Bondarenko to reach the second round of the Nuremberg Cup.

The 26-year-old overturned a deficit in the third-set tie-break to beat her Ukrainian opponent 6-3 3-6 7-6 (7-3) and end a winless run of eight matches.

Briton Watson’s last victory came in the quarter-finals of the Hobart International in January.

She will play Hungarian qualifier Fanny Stollar in the second round in Germany.

After winning the first set, British number two Watson dropped the second before struggling to hold serve in the decider.

She failed to convert several match points before wrapping up an important win in two hours and 38 minutes.

  • Williams to be unseeded at French Open

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Queen's 2018: Cameron Norrie awarded wildcard at Fever-Tree Championships

  • Posted: May 22, 2018

British number three Cameron Norrie has been awarded a wildcard into the singles at the Fever-Tree Championships at Queen’s in June.

Norrie, 22, is a career-high 102nd in the world rankings and impressed on his Davis Cup debut in February.

Australian four-time champion Lleyton Hewitt and compatriot Nick Kyrgios have received a doubles wildcard.

“[Cam] has shown that he can mix it with the top players on any given day,” said GB Davis Cup captain Leon Smith.

  • Norrie reaches second round in Lyon

“He now needs to start winning matches regularly in main draws, make the top 100 and push on from there.”

This year’s Queen’s – which will take place from 18-24 June – is set to have the strongest line-up in its 128-year history, with 17 of the world’s top 30 taking part.

World number one Rafael Nadal is one of six players from the top 10 who have signed up to play, with Britain’s five-time winner Andy Murray, who is currently injured, also due to feature in the event.

The 2018 championships will mark only the second time Hewitt and Kyrgios, 23, have played together at a tournament, with the first coming in Montreal three years ago.

Hewitt, 37, retired from singles in 2016 having first won the Queen’s title in 2000, when he defeated Pete Sampras in straight sets when just 19 years old.

“The Fever-Tree Championships at The Queen’s Club will always have a special place in my heart,” said Hewitt.

“I still love to compete, I can still play a bit, and to be given the chance to get out there with another Aussie is something I’m really looking forward to.”

The Queen’s Club Championships, now sponsored by drinks brand Fever-Tree, will be live on BBC television, radio and online.

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Auger-Aliassime Leads #NextGenATP Charge In Roland Garros Qualifying

  • Posted: May 22, 2018

Auger-Aliassime Leads #NextGenATP Charge In Roland Garros Qualifying

The Canadian was one of nine #NextGenATP winners on Monday

Judging by their performance in the first round of Roland Garros qualifying, a slew of #NextGenATP players are ready to make their mark in Paris.

Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime was one of nine #NextGenATP competitors to notch a win in the French capital on Monday, defeating South African Lloyd Harris 6-4, 6-3. The 17-year-old became the first player born in the 2000s to compete in an ATP World Tour Masters 1000 event earlier this year at the BNP Paribas Open, where he earned his maiden tour-level victory against compatriot Vasek Pospisil.

Since, Auger-Aliassime has gained even more momentum by advancing to the quarter-finals at two ATP Challenger Tour events in Portugal.

“Sometimes you expect to be nervous, to be tight, to not play your best tennis. But I think from the first game I was serving well, so that helps a lot because against good players, to help out physically, it’s always good to serve well,” Auger-Aliassime said according to “At the start of the year I played well at Indian Wells, now I’m playing good on clay. I won two [ATP Challenger Tour] titles on clay last year, so I really think I can play well on any surface.”

The Canadian, who is the youngest competitor in the draw, will face another #NextGenATP player in the second round: Spaniard Jaume Munar. The 21-year-old beat No. 11 seed Tim Smyczek 6-3, 7-5 to set a rematch of a first-round match at the Barletta, Italy, Challenger earlier this year, in which he beat Auger-Aliassime after two hours, 51 minutes.

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Munar, who is at a career-best No. 155 in the ATP Rankings, is getting plenty of attention from someone who knows a thing or two about climbing that ladder. World No. 1 Rafael Nadal watched his younger compatriot play in person during Australian Open qualifying earlier this year.

The seven other #NextGenATP players who progressed are Jay Clarke, Hubert Hurkacz, Miomir Kecmanovic, Duckhee Lee, Casper Ruud, Akira Santillan and Carlos Taberner.

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