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From around the world

Ageless Karlovic Books Bublik Battle In Newport

  • Posted: Jul 13, 2021

Former champion Ivo Karlovic rallied to take down 24-year-old Bernabe Zapata Miralles 6-7(5), 6-1, 6-4 and score his 17th win at the Hall of Fame Open on Tuesday afternoon.

The 42-year-old Croatian, who lifted the Newport trophy here in 2016 and reached the 2015 final, fired 24 aces and saved all six of the break points he faced en route to victory. The 6’11” right-hander won 87 per cent (47/54) of points behind his booming first serve.

“It was really difficult after losing that tie-break, but after that I just continued. I was a little bit more aggressive and it paid off at the end,” Karlovic said in an on-court interview. “It’s always nice to be here in Newport, especially this week as there is no more ‘bubble’ and everything is open again. That is really, really nice.”

Karlovic will next face top seed Alexander Bublik for the first time, as he bids to become oldest ATP Tour quarter-finalist since Jimmy Connors, 42, in Halle in 1995. 

Fifth seed Tennys Sandgren also made his way into the second round after edging past Joao Sousa 6-4, 7-6(3). The American reeled off five games in a row in the opening set, and dominated the tie-break to advance after an hour and a half. He will be joined by countryman Jack Sock, who came back from a set down to defeat Alex Bolt 3-6, 6-4, 6-3 in his first tour-level main-draw match since last year’s Roland Garros. Sock set up a clash with third seed Yoshihito Nishioka.


Sandgren will next face Chinese Taipei’s Jason Jung, who defeated qualifier Brayden Schnur in a three-hour and 17-minute epic. In a match with 29 break points on offer, it was Jung who capitalised on his opportunities to break Schnur five times and claim a tightly contested third-set tie-break for a 7-5, 6-7(1), 7-6(4) victory. 

Austrian qualifier Sebastian Ofner booked a meeting with big-serving Kevin Anderson, the eighth seed, after defeating Yasutaka Uchiyama 6-4, 6-4.

Did You Know? 
At 42 years old, Karlovic is the oldest player to compete in an ATP Tour match since Thomas Muster, 44, in 2011 in Vienna (l. to Dominic Thiem in R1).

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Tale Of The Tape: Secrets Of An ATP Physio

  • Posted: Jul 13, 2021

ATP players looking for a little extra confidence in their knees when lunging and sliding need two key things: high-quality kinesiology tape and the experieince of a qualified ATP physio to apply it.

So if you’re a player lying on your back in the locker room, you hope that you find yourself looking up at six-year ATP Tour physio Seif Wardani holding a roll of Nitto kinesiology tape. The unique properites of Nitto’s tape allows for a more unrestricted, explosive movement than more rigid tape. Below, we go behind the scenes with Seif as he walks through a typical taping process.

Nitto is an ATP Gold Partner and Title Partner of the Nitto ATP Finals, which will be held in Turin 14-21 November.

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Ruusuvuori Rallies Against Home Hope Ymer In Bastad

  • Posted: Jul 13, 2021

Eighth seed Emil Ruusuvuori rallied from a set down to see off wild card Mikael Ymer of Sweden and start his Nordea Open campaign with a 1-6, 6-4, 6-3 victory on Tuesday.

The Finnish player lost the first five games of the match, but he saved six of the seven break points he faced in the second set to level the score against Ymer, who was seeking to become the first home champion in Bastad since Robin Soderling in 2011. Ruusuvuori won 75 per cent (18/24) of points behind his first serve en route to victory in two hours and three minutes.

“It was a very difficult start for me. I was very slow getting into the conditions, and it was much slower than I thought,” Ruusuvuori said. “But slowly I got into it, and I just started playing smarter. Point by point, I felt like I was a little bit better. It was a tough fight in the end, and this time it came home so it was a good match in the end.”

Ruusuvuori improved to 2-0 in his ATP Head2Head against Ymer, and will next face Norbert Gombos. The Slovakian also turned around a one-sided start in his 1-6, 7-6(4), 6-2 victory over Pablo Cuevas to advance after two hours and three minutes.


Also in action, Danish wild card Holger Vitus Nodskov Rune rallied against Radu Albot to set up a second-round meeting with top seed Casper Ruud. After being down a set and a break, the 18-year-old raised his level and claimed 12 of the next 13 games to win 4-6, 6-3, 6-0.

Sixth seed Lorenzo Musetti suffered a first-round upset at the hands of Switzerland’s Henri Laaksonen. The qualifier converted six of the 24 break points he created en route to a 6-2, 3-6, 6-4 win over the 19-year-old Italian. Seventh seed Jiri Vesely also advanced, as he cruised against Salvatore Caruso 6-3, 6-2 to next face Yannick Hanfmann. 

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Krajinovic, Djere Move Into Hamburg Second Round

  • Posted: Jul 13, 2021

Sixth-seeded Serbian Filip Krajinovic battled hard on Tuesday to book his place in the Hamburg European Open second round with a 6-3, 6-7(3), 6-1 victory over German wild card Daniel Altmaier, who captured his first ATP Challenger Tour title last week in Braunschweig (d. Laaksonen). Krajinovic let slip a 3-1 advantage in the second set, but won the first five games of a one-sided decider and now plays Philipp Kohlschreiber.

Another Serbian, Laslo Djere, saved seven of eight break points to upset seventh-seeded German Jan-Lennard Struff 6-4, 7-5 in one hour and 50 minutes to set up a clash against Brazilian qualifier Thiago Seyboth Wild. Struff, who beat World No. 2 Daniil Medvedev in the NOVENTI OPEN first round in Halle, drops to an 11-8 record on clay this year that includes a BMW Open runner-up finish (l. to Basilashvili).


Qualifier Carlos Taberner recorded just his third tour-level match win by winning 80 per cent of his first-service points in a 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 victory over fellow Spaniard Feliciano Lopez in two hours and 10 minutes. The World No. 114 will next challenge second seed Pablo Carreno Busta, who celebrated his 30th birthday on Monday.

Elsewhere, Belgrade Open runner-up Alex Molcan fought past Gianluca Mager of Italy 4-6, 6-4, 7-6(3) in two hours and 19 minutes. The Slovakian qualifier awaits the winner between fifth-seeded Serbian Dusan Lajovic or Lucas Pouille of France.

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Matteo's Mad Dash: Wimbledon, Football At Wembley & Celebrations In Rome

  • Posted: Jul 13, 2021

Matteo Berrettini may have fallen one match short of Wimbledon glory on Sunday, but after a quick dash to Wembley football stadium he became a part of Italian celebrations, following the nation’s victory over England in the European Championships football final.

The 25-year-old watched from the stands as Italy beat England 3-2 on penalties (1-1 after extra time) with his girlfriend, WTA pro Alja Tomljanovic. Afterwards, they went onto the pitch to celebrate the victory.

“I wanted to see this match live to try to let the disappointment go,” Berrettini told Sky Sports Italia. “It was cool. I was more nervous than my parents were during my Wimbledon final!”

Berrettini then flew on Monday to Rome, where he was invited to join the celebrations at the Quirinale Palace, the official resident of Sergio Mattarella, the President of the Italian Republic.

There, the World No. 8 had another opportunity to congratulate the football team and also gave one of his tennis racquets to President Mattarella. He then moved onto the Palazzo Chigi, residence of the Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi.

Berrettini and the Italian football team that won the European Championships in London on Sunday.
Ufficio stampa Quirinale

Berrettini, who has kept in contact with several Italian footballers, including Gianluigi Donnarumma, Giorgio Chiellini, Ciro Immobile, Leonardo Bonucci, Alessandro Florenzi and Nicolo Barella throughout the past few weeks, was also part of the victory bus parade.

Before Berrettini’s semi-final win over Pole Hubert Hurkacz and his 6-7(4), 6-4, 6-4, 6-3 loss to Novak Djokovic in the Wimbledon final, he and Italian football manager, Roberto Mancini, shared the respect they have for each other with their social media followers.

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Karlovic: Ask His Age, He'll Bump Down A Number

  • Posted: Jul 13, 2021

Nearly every tournament Ivo Karlovic plays, the Croatian has a chance to set an age-related record. But if you talk to the 42-year-old, he feels younger by the year.

“I don’t feel any weaker or slower, even though I didn’t compete a lot in the past year. I’m 42 years old, but I feel pretty much the same as I did 10 years ago,” Karlovic told “It’s just a matter of motivation and being able to win matches. Tennis-wise and physically, I’m the same.

“Even when people ask me my age, I go backwards. Next birthday, I’ll be 41.”

The No. 210 player in the FedEx ATP Rankings is outside the Top 200 this week for the first time since March 2011. But with a wild card at the Hall of Fame Open, Karlovic hopes to start moving in the right direction.

The International Tennis Hall of Fame has historically been a good venue for the 6’11” right-hander, who won the title here in 2016.

“Here I’ve done well in the past. It’s a really nice event and I’ve always liked it here. That’s why I’m really happy that I got a wild card,” Karlovic said. “Hopefully I’ll do well here and then we’ll see how it’s going to be for the rest of the year.”

This is just Karlovic’s eighth tournament since professional tennis returned last August following a suspension of more than five months due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Croatian did not want to take risks during this period, so he opted to focus on training rather than traveling and playing tournaments.

“I’m 42 years old, and I’m happy that I’m still able to compete,” Karlovic said. “Even though I haven’t traveled a lot in the past year-and-a-half due to the Coronavirus pandemic, it’s nice to be back on Tour.”

Karlovic most recently competed in qualifying at Wimbledon, where he lost in the first round against Russian Roman Safiullin. The former World No. 14 then went to Croatia to practise for two weeks before flying to the United States.

The winner of 370 tour-level matches does not want to talk about goals at the moment given how few tournaments he has played in the past year. But he is keen to add matches to his tally, starting with his first-round clash on the Newport grass Tuesday against Spaniard Bernabe Zapata Miralles.

“I just want to compete again and have fun on the court. I think that here in Newport, on these courts, I will have a chance to win matches,” Karlovic said. “I’m really happy that they gave me a wild card and hopefully I will be good and prove that I deserved it.”

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'Very Motivated' Brooksby Makes Successful Grass Debut In Newport

  • Posted: Jul 13, 2021

#NextGenATP American Jenson Brooksby’s rise is showing no signs of slowing down. The 20-year-old defeated Russian veteran Evgeny Donskoy 7-5, 6-3 on Monday to reach the second round at the Hall of Fame Open, a grass-court ATP 250 in Newport, Rhode Island.

World No. 152 Brooksby has won three ATP Challenger Tour titles this season and made the final at another. However, this was just his second tour-level win, and his first since beating Tomas Berdych in the first round of the 2019 US Open.

“I try to treat every match the same. But I want to prove that I can do the same things at all the ATP Tour events as I’ve done at the Challengers so far,” Brooksby said. “I’m very motivated to prove myself and for everybody to see how well I can do here. I’m pushing for that.” 

Brooksby will face a stiff challenge in the next round against countryman Denis Kudla, who eliminated 2018 champion Steve Johnson 7-6(3), 3-6, 6-4.

Kudla is a grass-court stalwart who qualified for Wimbledon and reached the third round, in which he tested eventual champion Novak Djokovic in a tight straight-sets defeat. Brooksby had never played a match on the surface until Monday, but he is confident his game will work well on the lawns.


“I think grass can actually be the best surface for my game style. Not quite yet, I’ve only played one match, but I think in the future it could actually be the best surface for my style, how I train and how I play,” Brooksby said. “I’m excited to play some more on grass.”

Former World No. 5 Kevin Anderson, the 2018 Wimbledon finalist, made a good start to his week with a 7-5, 6-3 win against Ukrainian Illya Marchenko.

Feature – Anderson On Fixing The Oceans: ‘Everybody Really Needs To Play Their Part’

The eighth-seeded wild card only lost three first-serve points (18/21) and saved all three break points he faced. The South African will next face Austrian qualifier Sebastian Ofner or Japan’s Yasutaka Uchiyama. Another Japanese player, Yuichi Sugita, ousted Austrian Jurij Rodionov 7-5, 6-3.

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