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Juan Martin del Potro: Argentine to return from broken kneecap in October

  • Posted: Aug 30, 2019

Former US Open champion Juan Martin del Potro expects to make his return from a broken kneecap at Stockholm in October.

The Argentine, 30, has not played since hurting his right knee at Queen’s in June, during the build-up to Wimbledon.

Del Potro, who first fractured his kneecap last October at the Shanghai Masters, had surgery before returning home to begin his recovery.

“I’m very happy to tell you that I’ll play in Stockholm and Vienna in October,” he said on Twitter.

“These two tournaments are very special to me, as I had the chance to win both of them.”

Del Potro won the US Open in 2009 and finished runner-up last year to Novak Djokovic, but has missed this year’s tournament because of the injury.

He is a two-time winner of the Stockholm Open, which runs from 14-20 October, and also claimed the 2012 title in Vienna, where he plans to compete the week after.

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De Minaur Dashes Into US Open Fourth Round With First Top 10 Win

  • Posted: Aug 30, 2019

De Minaur Dashes Into US Open Fourth Round With First Top 10 Win

Aussie to face Grigor Dimitrov or Kamil Majchrzak next

Alex de Minaur was a man on a mission on Friday at the US Open. The 20-year-old booked his spot in the fourth round with aplomb, upsetting seventh seed Kei Nishikori on a sun-kissed afternoon in New York.

De Minaur moved into the second week of a Grand Slam for the first time, advancing to the Round of 16 at Flushing Meadows with a 6-2, 6-4, 2-6, 6-3 win. The victory carries added significance for the Sydney native, who overturned an 0-11 record against Top 10 opponents. He defeated the World No. 7 in two hours and 48 minutes.

“The crowd support was amazing,” De Minaur, who claimed his maiden ATP Tour title last month in Atlanta, said after the match. “I had a bit of a thrill last year against Cilic. Was two-sets-to-love up again and I’m glad I could finally get the win.”

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De Minaur gave Nishikori a taste of his own medicine to kick off Day 5 on Grandstand. A defensive demon, the Aussie refused to concede an inch from the baseline and attacked at will throughout the encounter. Crushing the ball like never before in his young career, he consistently forced Nishikori out of his rhythm and made the Japanese play on his terms.

Following a Wednesday washout, De Minaur was forced to play his second and third rounds on consecutive days, but he showed no signs of fatigue. In fact, it was the exact opposite. The energetic Aussie covered every inch of the court, converting seven breaks in total.

The #NextGenATP star sprinted to a quick advantage in less than 40 minutes, grabbing an immediate double-break lead out of the gates. He benefitted from 12 unforced errors in the first set, while striking 11 winners. Growing even more confident, De Minaur broke to open the second and edged to a two-set lead.

While Nishikori began to find his groove in third set, it was much of the same from De Minaur in the fourth. The Aussie pumped his fists and leapt in the air as he lunged for a volley winner at 3-all. One point later, he converted the decisive break to love and moved past the finish line when a Nishikori forehand found the net.

In search of a second straight appearance at the Next Gen ATP Finals, De Minaur is looking to build on his third-place standing in the ATP Race To Milan. He will next face either Grigor Dimitrov or Kamil Majchrzak on Sunday.

De Minaur will be back on the court later on Friday for his first-round doubles match, alongside Matt Reid. They face Guido Pella and Diego Schwartzman.

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'We tried to be calm, everyone else was stressing' – the unique challenge of playing your identical twin

  • Posted: Aug 30, 2019
US Open 2019
Venue: Flushing Meadows, New York Dates: 26 Aug – 8 Sep
Coverage: Live text and radio commentary on selected matches on the BBC Sport website and app

Third seed Karolina Pliskova is among the favourites to win the women’s singles at the US Open and will play Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur in the third round on Friday.

In her latest BBC Sport column, the Czech discusses her relationship with twin sister Kristyna, who is also a WTA Tour player, how they shared a hotel room before they played each other in Birmingham recently…

When the draw for a Grand Slam tournament is made I’m always worried that Kristyna and I will be drawn against each other in the first round – that would be the worst day of my life!

There would be too much pressure and too many nerves because the Grand Slams are so important and mean so much to us.

So it is always a relief when my sister is in the opposite half.

That’s what happened here at the US Open, although it was sad that she lost to Elise Martens in their second-round match on Thursday.

We don’t watch the draw as it is being made, nor do we follow it on social media, and then when we do eventually see it we message and always say: ‘Phew, we are not playing each other!’

We have only played each other once on the WTA Tour and that came a few months ago in Birmingham.

It was a very difficult situation for both of us – and the worst thing was that we were sharing a hotel room at the tournament!

We have played each other many times when we were younger – in qualifiers and on the lower-ranked tours – but we hadn’t played for about six or seven years.

We had come close a couple of times in main draws but either I lost or she lost earlier, and also I had to withdraw once because of injury when we were supposed to play in Prague.

So it felt like everybody was waiting for this match to happen, the Czech media were excited and many people were talking about the match.

‘Our parents couldn’t watch’

It was a strange atmosphere in our hotel room on the morning of the match.

Kristyna and I were trying to be calm and act normal, but all the people around us and our teams were stressing and wanted to talk about it so much.

Thankfully our parents weren’t there in Birmingham, I can’t imagine how horrible it was for them. They didn’t even watch on television back in the Czech Republic.

My mum doesn’t usually like to watch our matches anyway because she is too nervous. My father usually does watch matches – but not this one. He did something else to take his mind away from it.

So we both felt very nervous and didn’t know what would happen – if we would play good tennis or bad tennis.

It was huge pressure for me because if you look at the rankings I should win easily.

Of course I wanted to win the match, but I also didn’t want my sister to lose. It was an emotional rollercoaster. We ended up playing a long match and Kristyna won 6-2 3-6 7-6 (9-7)!

It was the biggest victory of her career – she had never beaten a top-five player before that.

Kristyna is ranked 86th at the moment but I believe she has the ability to improve that a lot. She is not easy to beat.

If we could both be ranked in the top 10 together that would mean a lot to both of us – even more to her of course – and our families.

But that would also mean we would play each other even more, which is something I’m not sure I would enjoy!

Maybe it is something you could get used to if it is happening more often, and then we wouldn’t be as super stressed about it like we were in Birmingham.

‘Sometimes I talk to Kristyna more than my husband’

Of course we look similar because we are identical twins. However, I think we have aged a little differently, and we try to be different because we have never wanted to be the same.

We have different tattoos. She is a little more blonde. And our personalities are quite different.

But sometimes we think in the same way, and we often say the same thing at the same time – that makes people laugh.

She thinks a little more about stuff and is more responsible. She is two minutes older – so maybe she is trying to be like the boss a little bit and protect me!

We still give each other advice about tennis; we give advice to each other about everything in life.

Barely an hour goes by when we aren’t talking on the phone – I text “hi” as soon as I wake up and and we continue all day on WhatsApp.

Sometimes I speak to her more than my husband! He doesn’t mind though and he’s happy for Kristyna to hang out when it is just the three of us.

The week before the US Open we went to watch some Broadway shows together – Pretty Woman and Frozen – and had a few dinners, and also did some walking and shopping.

With us being in different parts of the draw – I played Monday and Wednesday, and Kristyna played Tuesday – we have not done much in the past three or four days because you don’t want to go into Manhattan and waste energy.

I need all my focus on going as far as I can in the tournament and hopefully winning my first Grand Slam.

Karolina Pliskova was talking to BBC Sport’s Jonathan Jurejko at Flushing Meadows

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Zverev through after five-set battle as Nadal gets walkover into third round

  • Posted: Aug 30, 2019
US Open 2019
Venue: Flushing Meadows, New York Dates: 26 Aug – 8 Sep
Coverage: Live text and BBC Radio 5 Live Sports Extra commentary on selected matches on the BBC Sport website and app. Click here for Live Guide.

German sixth seed Alexander Zverev was taken to a deciding set for a second successive match as he saw off American Frances Tiafoe 6-3 3-6 6-2 2-6 6-3 in the US Open second round.

Zverev hit 52 unforced errors as the momentum swung throughout.

Second seed Rafael Nadal had a walkover, with Australian Thanasi Kokkinakis withdrawing with a right shoulder injury.

The three-time champion will play South Korea’s Chung Hyeon in the next round.

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Australian Nick Kyrgios produced a stunning display of serving as he hit 24 aces in his routine 6-4 6-2 6-4 win over unseeded Frenchman Antoine Hoang.

Kyrgios, the 28th seed, has now reached the third round four times but has never made it past that phase. He now takes on unseeded Russian Andrey Rublev, who got through as a result of the retirement of Frenchman Gilles Simon after the first set of their match.

Meanwhile, Zverev will play Slovenian Aljaz Bedene, who beat 29th seed Benoit Paire, in the third round.

The 22-year-old, who defeated Radu Albot in the first round, said: “Frances gave me an unbelievable fight today. I’m just happy to get the win somehow.”

Elsewhere, in-form Cincinnati Masters champion Daniil Medvedev recorded his 16th win from the past 18 matches with a 6-3 7-5 5-7 6-3 victory over Hugo Dellien of Bolivia. The Russian fifth seed will now play Spain’s Feliciano Lopez.

American Denis Kudla’s reward for defeating 29th seed Dusan Lajovic 7-5 7-5 0-6 6-3 is a third-round contest against defending champion and world number one Novak Djokovic.

French 13th seed Gael Monfils and Canada’s world number 33 Denis Shapovalov will face each other after they enjoyed comfortable wins. Monfils defeated Romania’s Marius Copil 6-3 6-2 6-2 and Shapovalov beat Swiss Henri Laaksonen 6-4 7-6 (7-2) 6-2.

Swiss 2016 champion Stan Wawrinka, 34, saw off fellow veteran Jeremy Chardy of France 6-4 6-3 6-7 (3-7) 6-3. The 23rd seed will now play Italy’s Paolo Lorenzi.

Belgian 15th seed David Goffin, beaten by Medvedev in the recent final at Cincinnati, defeated Gregoire Barrere 6-2 6-2 6-2 and will play Spain’s Pablo Carreno Busta in the third round.

American 14th seed John Isner, a quarter-finalist last year, will play Croatia’s 2014 champion Marin Cilic, after he secured a 6-3 7-6 (7-4) 7-6 (7-5) victory over Jan-Lennard Struff of Germany.

And Australian Alex de Minaur, 20, overcame Chile’s 31st seed Cristian Garin 6-3 7-5 6-3 to set up a tie against seventh seed Kei Nishikori.

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Damm, 15, & Kodat, 16, Win US Open Doubles Match

  • Posted: Aug 30, 2019

Damm, 15, & Kodat, 16, Win US Open Doubles Match

Teens triumph in first tour-level match

American teens Martin Damm Jr. and Toby Alex Kodat may need to open adult bank accounts after a stunning first-round win in the US Open doubles Thursday. Damm, 15, and Kodat, 16, had combined career earnings of $1504 coming into the week, but increased that by a factor of 20 after beating countrymen Mitchell Krueger and Tim Smyczek 7-6(6), 7-5 at Flushing Meadows.

The teens are guaranteed to share $30,000 by reaching the second round, with a $50,000 pay day awaiting if they reach the third round.

But the excitement of winning their first tour-level match was what was truly top of mind Thursday.

Kodat said, “It was such an honor to receive a wild card at the US Open. A dream come true. To win here tonight, our first round, is something I could only have dreamed about. Such an amazing experience for us.”

Damm, whose father Martin reached ATP Rankings of 42 for singles and 5 for doubles, said, “What a day for us and what an amazing place to record our first Grand Slam win, and then to do it together. We have been friends since we were very young and played in every level of the juniors together. To play here, get this experience, and then walk away with a win, it’s a dream come true.”

At their most recent Grand Slam at Wimbledon, Damm and Kodat reached the semi-finals of the boys’ doubles and Damm also reached the semi-finals of the boys’ singles.

At Roland Garros, Kodat reached the boys’ singles final and Damm the boys’ semis. They fell in the quarters of the doubles.

In the third round the teens play the winner of 12th seeds Kevin Krawietz/Andreas Mies and Marcelo Demoliner/Dominic Inglot.

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Fifth-Set Frenzy: Chung's Comeback Win Highlights US Open Trend

  • Posted: Aug 30, 2019

Fifth-Set Frenzy: Chung’s Comeback Win Highlights US Open Trend

Zverev among the many players joining the marathon madness

Hyeon Chung is on the rise once again at the US Open, scoring his second consecutive five-set win on Thursday against Fernando Verdasco to reach the third round. The South Korean, champion at the inaugural 2017 Next Gen ATP Finals, is far from alone in his penchant for five-set battles this week, though.

Twenty-three matches went to a fifth set in the first two rounds in New York, almost guaranteeing that the US Open will have more matches going the distance than any other Grand Slam this year or in 2018.

Five-Set Grand Slam Matches (2018 & 2019)

Grand Slam Total Five-Set Matches
2018 Australian Open 24 
2018 Roland Garros 25 
2018 Wimbledon 22 
2018 US Open 17
2019 Australian Open 24
2019 Roland Garros 24
2019 Wimbledon 21
2019 US Open 23 (through two rounds)

Chung is among five players who doubled their pleasure in scoring back-to-back five-set victories to reach the third round. Joining him in the feat are sixth seed Alexander Zverev, Alexander Bublik, Paolo Lorenzi and Kamil Majchrzak.

Chung, Lorenzi and Majchrzak showed supreme fitness by also weathering three matches in the qualifying draw. The South Korean’s win over Verdasco, which involved saving a match point at 5-6 in the final set, was one of four matches so far this week to conclude in a fifth-set tie-break. 

Meanwhile, Zverev has proven to be the last opponent anyone wants to face in a final set at a Grand Slam. He boosted his fifth-set record at majors this week to 12-5, winning nine of his past 10 matches that went the distance.

You May Also Like: Marathon Man Zverev Outlasts Tiafoe In Five

The South Korean spent a minute under seven hours on court in his first two rounds, proving he’s fully recovered from the back injury that sidelined him for five months this season. Chung returned to action on the ATP Challenger Tour in July and won the first event of his comeback in Chengdu.

He’ll need all of his remaining energy for a high-octane third-round clash on Saturday against second seed Rafael Nadal.

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US Open 2019: Coco Gauff to play Naomi Osaka after impressive second-round win

  • Posted: Aug 30, 2019
US Open 2019
Venue: Flushing Meadows, New York Dates: 26 Aug – 8 Sep
Coverage: Live text and BBC Radio 5 Live Sports Extra commentary on selected matches on the BBC Sport website and app. Click here for Live Guide.

American teenage sensation Coco Gauff is set for an intriguing US Open third-round match against defending champion Naomi Osaka after beating Timea Babos 6-2 4-6 6-4 on Louis Armstrong Stadium.

The 15-year-old, who came to prominence at Wimbledon, and the Hungarian world 112 produced a superb spectacle.

Gauff broke three times in the opening set before Babos fought back to level.

In a third set of lung-bursting rallies, Gauff crucially broke in the 10th game to seal victory.

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  • Kvitova knocked out by Petkovic

The American is back on court on Friday for a doubles match and said that she would think about the match against Japanese world number one Osaka on Saturday – the day of their encounter.

She also paid tribute to Babos for her part in a thrilling match, saying: “Timea played so good and I’m so happy to get through.

“I was tested a lot. We both just tested each other. If I didn’t win the last point maybe she would have won the match.”

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Kyrgios, Popyrin Lead Aussie Charge At US Open

  • Posted: Aug 30, 2019

Kyrgios, Popyrin Lead Aussie Charge At US Open

Rublev, Berrettini also advance

One word to describe Nick Kyrgios’ performance on Thursday at the US Open: clinical.

The 28th seed completed a 6-4, 6-2, 6-4 win over Antoine Hoang in a brisk one hour and 58 minutes. It was standing room only on Grandstand to catch a glimpse of the Aussie, who sprinted past the French wild card with little trouble.

Kyrgios, who blasted 40 winners, has not dropped a set in matching his best result at the US Open. He has reached the third round for a fourth time and will look to make his Round of 16 debut when he faces Andrey Rublev on Saturday.

“Once again, the crowd was amazing. It’s always fun playing in front of them,” said Kyrgios following the match. “But he’s no easy opponent. Obviously he’s a quality opponent being in the second round here, so I knew it would be tough but I had to serve and play big. That’s what happened.

“New York has a fair bit of distractions, so I’m trying to stay away from that. But this is one of my favourite tournaments of the year, so I’m really trying to strap in and do well this week. I want to stay focused.”

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Kyrgios breezed through the first set after 35 minutes without much drama. Serving at 5-4 40/0, he faked an underarm serve and promptly struck a sublime second serve ace that kicked beyond Hoang’s reach. It was smooth sailing from there for the 24-year-old, eventually converting his third match point with a service winner.

He enters New York on the heels of a title run at the Citi Open in Washington. It will be the second FedEx ATP Head2Head meeting between Kyrgios and Rublev, following a first-round triumph by the Aussie in Moscow last year.

Earlier on Thursday, Rublev advanced to the third round after Gilles Simon retired with a neck ailment. He led 6-2 when the Frenchman was forced to stop. Rublev, who upset eighth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas to open his campaign, is just two years removed from a magical quarter-final run at Flushing Meadows. On the comeback trail after enduring a stress fracture in his lower back, the 21-year-old is pushing towards a Top 40 return in the ATP Rankings.

For the second straight year, there are three Australians in the third round of the US Open. In 2018, it was Kyrgios, Alex de Minaur and John Millman. This week, Kyrgios and De Minaur are joined by 20-year-old Alexei Popyrin.


Popyrin defeated Mikhail Kukushkin 2-6, 7-5, 6-3, 6-2, rallying from a set down to triumph on Court 12. The Sydney native launched 44 winners, including 15 aces, during the two-hour and 35-minute affair. He converted seven of 10 break chances.

Popyrin, who is sitting in 11th position in the ATP Race To Milan, is hoping a strong week in New York will propel him to a first Next Gen ATP Finals appearance. Making his US Open debut, he has claimed match wins at all four Grand Slams this year.

Next up for the surging Aussie is 24th seed Matteo Berretini. The Italian defeated Jordan Thompson 7-5, 7-6(5), 4-6, 6-1 to reach the third round in New York for the first time. He is one win from matching his best Grand Slam result, achieved last month at Wimbledon.

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