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Berrettini, Sinner Continue Turin Charge In Indian Wells

  • Posted: Oct 10, 2021

Italy’s hopes of having two players in Turin for the Nitto ATP Finals were bolstered Sunday, with Matteo Berrettini and Jannik Sinner winning their opening-round matches at the BNP Paribas Open.

Berrettini advanced in straight sets, defeating Chilean qualifier Alejandro Tabilo 6-4, 7-5. Sinner showed no signs of fatigue following his title in Sofia last week, as he eased past John Millman 6-2, 6-2.

Berrettini, 25, had not won a match at Indian Wells before taking the court, losing in his two previous appearances. He is a two-time champion this year, winning the Serbia Open and the cinch Championships.

Berrettini sits in sixth place in the FedEx ATP Race to Turin, while Sinner is 10th.


Sinner dictated proceedings against Millman in his first-career match at the BNP Paribas Open, breaking the Australian’s serve four times and not facing a break point. The 20-year-old Italian’s serve was dominant, as he won 86 per cent (18/21) of first-serve points and 74 per cent (14/19) of second-serve points.

“Today, I played very well. I didn’t miss many shots and I felt great on court,” Sinner said in his on-court interview. “I had one week of practise here so it was quite long to prepare, which is very good.”

Berrettini will take on the winner of an all-American contest between Taylor Fritz and Brandon Nakashima, while up next for Sinner is 20th seed John Isner or Yoshihito Nishioka.

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Martinez On Tsitsipas Test: 'You Want To Play Against The Best'

  • Posted: Oct 10, 2021

When Pedro Martinez walks onto the court inside Stadium 1 on Sunday evening in Indian Wells, he will take everything in. The Spaniard remembers watching Rafael Nadal, Carlos Moya, Juan Carlos Ferrero, Albert Costa and David Ferrer among others on television when he was a boy.

“I saw all these players playing in the biggest stadiums,” Martinez told “I just wanted to be like them.”

Martinez now has another chance to compete on one of tennis’ grandest stages. He will play second seed Stefanos Tsitsipas for a spot in the third round of the BNP Paribas Open.

“These are the matches you want to play,” Martinez said. “You want to play against the best players in the world on the biggest courts in every tournament. It is what I train and play for.”


When Martinez was growing up, he lived next to the Club de Tenis Alzira, making his affinity for tennis natural. It was love at first sight between Martinez and the sport.

“I was loving every moment and step of my career trying to enjoy it,” Martinez said. “It was super fast but every year I was playing better tennis and improving, so that was the most important thing.”

One thing Martinez did not lack was national idols. Three Spaniards — Nadal, Moya and Ferrero — have climbed to World No. 1 in the FedEx ATP Rankings. Now World No. 61 Martinez, who made his first ATP Tour final this year in Kitzbuhel, is the seventh-ranked player in his country.

“We were lucky because we saw all these guys play in front of us, which gave us confidence and that inspired us to believe that was possible for the right to play professionally. There are very big players now,” Martinez said. “[Roberto] Bautista Agut, [Pablo] Carreno Busta and [Carlos] Alcaraz is going to be one of the top guys for sure. It is good for the kids that there are a lot of players coming and I hope we have more in the future.”

Martinez speaks four languages — Spanish, Catalan, English and Italian — and also understands French from studying it in school. Overall, he is a relaxed guy who cherishes time with family and friends, and enjoys watching Real Madrid.

“I like to be with my dogs at home. I like to watch football. I like to go out with my friends,” Martinez said. “I like to spend time with my family, which is so important because we travel a lot.”

Martinez’s love of animals is fitting, as he spent last week practising at the home of Roberto Bautista Agut, who owns several horses among other animals.

Competing in the United States, some fans will see Martinez’s name and think of another Pedro Martinez — the legendary Major League Baseball pitcher. But according to the tennis player, he is not even the second most famous athlete bearing his name, pointing to former Formula One driver Pedro Martinez de la Rosa.

“He was more famous than me, so maybe I am the third one,” Martinez said, cracking a laugh. “The Latin players were asking me about Pedro Martinez the baseball player. I think it is common, we have a lot of Pedro Martinez’s in Spain. I saw that the baseball player was a legend and he is from the Dominican Republic.”

Martinez will hope to raise his profile even more when he faces Tsitsipas, who defeated him in straight sets earlier this year at Roland Garros.

“He has a really good forehand. His first serve is really strong. He is going well into the court if you give him the time and he is so big, so he covers the court very well,” Martinez said. “I will have to play my game. I know more or less how I have to play. Maybe it will work, maybe not, but I have an idea and I am going to go for it.”

Although it is difficult for anyone on the ATP Tour to beat Tsitsipas, Martinez has one thing under control: his fighting spirit. That is what he wants fans to take away from the match.

“I want them to see how I suffer and to beat me, he has to hit four of five good shots to win a point,” Martinez said. “I don’t want to make mistakes, I want to play my game on a high level and give it my all the whole match.”

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Sunday Preview: Murray Meets Alcaraz; Tsitsipas & Zverev Begin Indian Wells Campaign

  • Posted: Oct 10, 2021

An experienced champion and one of the biggest emerging talents in the game will meet on Sunday at the BNP Paribas Open when former World No. 1 Andy Murray takes on #NextGenATP Spaniard Carlos Alcaraz in the second round in Indian Wells.

Murray has endured an eventful few days since arriving in California both on and off the court. Off it, the 34-year-old lost his wedding ring and shoes before being reunited with both, while on court he cruised past Adrian Mannarino to set up a first ATP Head2Head meeting with the Spaniard.

The Scot will have to be fully focused against Alcaraz, who is the 30th seed at the ATP Masters 1000 event, if he is to advance. The 18-year-old is making his debut in Indian Wells and the last time the tournament took place in March 2019, he was outside the Top 600 in the FedEx ATP Rankings.

Since then, the Spaniard has climbed to a career-high No. 38, captured his first tour-level title in Umag and reached the quarter-finals at the US Open, upsetting World No. 3 Stefanos Tsitsipas en route. Alcaraz will face Murray second on Stadium 2.

In a packed day of action, Germany’s Alexander Zverev and second seed Tsitsipas will begin their campaigns as they target their third and second Masters 1000 trophies of the season respectively.

Zverev, who has triumphed at this level in Madrid and Cincinnati this year, faces a tough test in the shape of #NextGenATP American Jenson Brooksby in what will be their first ATP Head2Head meeting.

Speaking ahead of his opening match, Zverev said: “I think the second part of the season for me has been incredible so far. I’ve only lost one match so far [and] I’ve won 17, so it is going well. I think everybody is happy to be back here. This is a tournament that everybody enjoys even though I didn’t have a lot of success here yet. I’m hoping to change that this year. I’m hoping to be able to find my rhythm, find my form here, we’ll see how the tournament goes.”

Having reached the fourth round at the US Open last month, Brooksby overcame Turkey’s Cem Ilkel as he returned to court for the first time since that run. The 20-year-old will be aiming to finish the season strongly as he bids to join Alcaraz and qualify for the Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals in Milan, to be played 9-13 November. Brooksby will face Zverev on Stadium 1.


Tsitsipas will follow Zverev onto Stadium 1, playing Spaniard Pedro Martinez, not before 6 p.m. The second seed clinched his first Masters 1000 title in Monte-Carlo in April and arrives in Indian Wells having helped guide Team Europe to a fourth-consecutive victory against Team World at the Laver Cup. It will be the second time the Greek, who is making his third appearance at the BNP Paribas Open, has faced the World No. 59, with Tsitsipas leading Martinez 1-0 in their ATP Head2Head Series.

Wimbledon finalist Matteo Berrettini, #NextGenATP Italian Jannik Sinner and 21-year-old Felix Auger-Aliassime are also all playing on Sunday. They will be aiming for deep runs in Indian Wells as they look to improve their bid to qualify for the Nitto ATP Finals, to be held from 14-21 November at the Pala Alpitour in Turin.

Berrettini, currently sixth in the FedEx ATP Race To Turin (3,955 points), is close to securing his spot at the season finale on home soil. The Italian will face Chile qualifier Alejandro Tabilo in the second round on Stadium 2.

Further back in the Race, Sinner, who is 10th (2,505), is making his debut in California and plays Australian John Millman on Stadium 3 in his first match since he won his fourth tour-level title in Sofia. Auger-Aliassime is in 11th place (2,320) and takes on Albert Ramos-Vinolas on Stadium 3. The Canadian leads Ramos-Vinolas 2-0 in their ATP Head2Head Series, but they have not met since October 2019.

STADIUM 1 start 11:00 am
WTA – [25] V. Kudermetova (RUS) vs [2] I. Swiatek (POL)
WTA – [32] S. Cirstea (ROU) vs [4] E. Svitolina (UKR)
ATP – J. Brooksby (USA) vs [3] A. Zverev (GER)
ATP – Not Before 6:00 pm – P. Martinez (ESP) vs [2] S. Tsitsipas (GRE)
WTA – Not Before 8:00 PM – [23] L. Fernandez (CAN) vs [9] A. Pavlyuchenkova (RUS)

STADIUM 2 start 11:00 am
ATP – [5] M. Berrettini (ITA) vs [Q] A. Tabilo (CHI)
ATP – [30] C. Alcaraz (ESP) vs [WC] A. Murray (GBR)
WTA – Not Before 3:00 PM – A. Sasnovich (BLR) vs [11] S. Halep (ROU)
WTA – Not Before 6:00 PM – [7] P. Kvitova (CZE) vs [27] V. Azarenka (BLR)
ATP – [20] J. Isner (USA) vs Y. Nishioka (JPN)

STADIUM 3 start 11:00 am
ATP – J. Millman (AUS) vs [10] J. Sinner (ITA)
ATP – B. Nakashima (USA) vs [31] T. Fritz (USA)
ATP – [7] F. Auger-Aliassime (CAN) vs A. Ramos-Vinolas (ESP)
WTA – Not Before 6:00 PM – [LL] J. Paolini (ITA) vs [19] J. Pegula (USA)
WTA – L. Kichenok (UKR) / J. Ostapenko (LAT) vs [6] H. Carter (USA) / G. Dabrowski (CAN)

STADIUM 4 start 11:00 am
WTA – [8] S. Fichman (CAN) / G. Olmos (MEX) vs M. Ninomiya (JPN) / S. Santamaria (USA)
WTA – Not Before 1:00 PM – S. Rogers (USA) vs I. Begu (ROU)
WTA – Y. Putintseva (KAZ) vs [24] J. Ostapenko (LAT)
ATP – Not Before 6:00 pm – [Q] C. Eubanks (USA) vs [29] N. Basilashvili (GEO)
WTA – [1] B. Krejcikova (CZE) / K. Siniakova (CZE) vs U. Eikeri (NOR) / A. Sasnovich (BLR)

STADIUM 5 start 11:00 am
ATP – K. Anderson (RSA) vs [17] L. Sonego (ITA)
ATP – [13] C. Garin (CHI) vs [Q] E. Escobedo (USA)
ATP – [Q] A. Vukic (AUS) vs [22] A. de Minaur (AUS)
ATP – Not Before 6:00 pm – [24] K. Khachanov (RUS) vs E. Ruusuvuori (FIN)

STADIUM 6 start 11:00 am
ATP – [14] G. Monfils (FRA) vs G. Mager (ITA)
ATP – [25] F. Fognini (ITA) vs J. Struff (GER)
ATP – [Q] E. Gomez (ECU) vs [12] P. Carreno Busta (ESP)
ATP – Not Before 6:00 pm – ATP – [1] N. Mektic (CRO) / M. Pavic (CRO) vs [WC] M. McDonald (USA) / B. Nakashima (USA)
ATP – R. Klaasen (RSA) / B. McLachlan (JPN) vs M. Arevalo (ESA) / M. Middelkoop (NED)

STADIUM 9 start 11:00 am
First Round – ATP – W. Koolhof (NED) / J. Rojer (NED) vs [PR] A. Krajicek (USA) / A. Mies (GER)
First Round – ATP – A. Behar (URU) / G. Escobar (ECU) vs [7] J. Peers (AUS) / F. Polasek (SVK)
WTA – After Suitable Rest NB 2:00 PM – [4] A. Guarachi (CHI) / D. Krawczyk (USA) vs V. Kudermetova (RUS) / E. Rybakina (KAZ)
Second Round – ATP – Not Before 6:00 pm – A. Karatsev (RUS) / A. Rublev (RUS) vs S. Bolelli (ITA) / M. Gonzalez (ARG)

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Coach Gilbert On Brooksby: 'The Belief & Confidence Is Just Growing'

  • Posted: Oct 10, 2021

#NextGenATP American Jenson Brooksby has been one of the breakthrough stars of the 2021 season. The 20-year-old reached his first ATP Tour final in Newport, upset Felix Auger-Aliassime en route to the Washington semi-finals and pushed Novak Djokovic to four sets in the fourth round of the US Open.

Brooksby has enjoyed his rise under the tutelage of Joseph Gilbert, who has coached him from age seven. spoke to Gilbert at the BNP Paribas Open before Brooksby’s second-round match against Alexander Zverev.

This year has been pretty special for Jenson. What do you think of the whole experience considering how long you’ve known him?
This is what Jenson dreams about. He loves it. He’s one of the few kids I’ve worked with that every time he hits a milestone, he comes back and he’s hungrier. There are a lot of kids I’ve trained where they hit something and then they relax a bit, like ‘Okay, I got to here and I [can] relax’.

With Jenson, it seems like every time he hits something he comes back and is like, ‘Alright, I’m motivated to do more’. I think that kind of explains his year a little bit. He hasn’t really gotten satisfied through the [period] of time and then I think that year of injuries [in 2020] was big. It was kind of a negative obviously because he was injured all year, but he learned to take care of his body better. We brought on some strength and conditioning coaches and then he was extremely fired up to prove himself out of the gates after being off.

It is clear that Jenson has a lot of self-belief. What do you think he has proven to himself with his results this year with all his big runs?
He’s proven that he belongs out here for sure. I think that’s one thing both of us wanted to see. He’s proven he can make a career out of this and that he can play with anybody. I feel like he kind of showed that with Djokovic a bit and showed that with Felix and showed that with some top guys he has played.

That belief and that confidence is just growing, which is great for me to see because it’s one of the hardest things to get. But it can easily be lost, too. It’s a day-in and day-out thing. You have to keep working hard.

[FOLLOW 1000]

Jenson showed in the Djokovic match early on that his level is pretty up there. What did you think of that match?
Jenson knows how much I love Djokovic. I think Djokovic, if he’s not the greatest player, he’s in those three guys. But Djokovic’s game and his style and his patterns and the way he plays I like a lot. I’ve watched it a lot, so going out there we had a game plan and what we were looking to do, but I felt like Jenson was redlining at the beginning and Djokovic was in third gear.

I knew that, so then as the match went on in the second, Djokovic put it into fourth and maybe into fifth gear in those long games in the middle of the second set when they went half an hour in like two games going at it. I think that’s where Jenson kind of redlined and then the engine exploded.

We went back and we took from that that we need to get more physical, but a lot of people didn’t really say a lot about how he just had a five-setter the match before, he had a four-setter the match before that, [another] four-setter before that. This was really his first Grand Slam that he got his teeth into. The kid has never played that many sets with this adrenaline and this energy in his life, and so he was fired up, but he was mentally exhausted. We took a couple of weeks off before this one and now I feel he is fresh and ready to go.

Who did you try to build Jenson’s game off of, or did you just take how he played as a kid and worked with that?
A little bit of everything. I have a style and strategy and a game I want to see, and I’ve only watched [Roger] Federer, [Rafael] Nadal and Djokovic for the past 20 years. They’ve been up there forever and they’re the best, so I kind of only watch the best through that period of time. I didn’t really take one of them. I tried to look at things all three of them did consistently, so it would make sense to me that this works or that works and this is what they’re doing.

But I definitely felt like Jenson wasn’t going to be like Rafa, just as far as the physicality of how he plays and he doesn’t have the ease of Federer. Djokovic with the patterns and the way he moves the ball around and the way he absorbs pace and the drop shot. It was fun for me to see him and Djokovic drop-shotting back and forth because I think one of the coaches I talked to was like, ‘There are going to be a lot of drop shots in this match because they both are handsy and feelsy’.

Definitely, for sure, that’s a look that I was looking at for many years with Jenson. People have compared him to Medvedev a little bit and Murray, but it’s definitely a hands type of player and absorbing and move the ball around.

Over the American summer, what always was evident was Jenson’s competitive spirit. Do you have any examples from off the court that just show how competitive of a guy he is?
Oh, yes. Jenson’s competitive to annoyance at times. Whether it’s ping-pong, cards, playing games or flipping a coin… before tournaments when he was younger, sometimes he was moving a little slow or getting up slowly and I would just start arguments and fights with him about college football or about something and that would get his juices flowing.

Even back home playing all the guys we have and the competitiveness growing up, Jenson was always on edge. I am, also. It kind of complements each other in a way and then at the same time it lights off fireworks. We’ve learned over 13 years to manage our time really well, where we need space and where we need intensity and when we need to focus, when we can mess around and when we need to lock in and be professional.

Now that you see how much excitement there is about how well Jenson has been doing, how do you insulate yourselves and focus on the process instead of worrying about all the other stuff?
That’s probably been the most difficult stuff so far… I think the really hard part is that [when you are] coming up, it’s all exciting. For every team in sports, it’s proving it that is really a testament. Whether it was the [NBA’s Golden State] Warriors when they first won, everybody was excited and it was great. And then for the second and third [championships] it looks a little more stressful.

You see it with Djokovic and you see it with Serena [Williams] and you see it with all of them. When they’re winning at the beginning, it’s all super exciting. Then after 10, 15 Grand Slams, it’s a lot of expectations. You win and it looks like you’re expected to and if you lose, it’s the end of the world. But that’s sports. That’s with Tom Brady, that’s with all the great tennis players and football players and athletes. It’s just sports.

You win and then it’s a what have you done lately type of attitude and you just have to deal with that. We try to block it out as much as possible and then keep the team close, keep it small, keep it to people he trusts.

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From Lucky Loser To Fourth Seed, Rublev Advances In Indian Wells

  • Posted: Oct 10, 2021

The last time Andrey Rublev competed in Indian Wells, two years ago, he lost in the final round of qualifying before entering the draw as a lucky loser. Now the Russian is the fourth seed, and on Saturday evening he advanced to the third round of the BNP Paribas Open.

Rublev battled past Spaniard Carlos Taberner 6-3, 6-4 in the final men’s match of the evening to set a third-round match against American Tommy Paul.

“I feel the same [as two years ago]. Of course, I hope I improved a lot and obviously if I’m [No.] 5 in the world, I should [have] improved,” Rublev said in his on-court interview. “Hopefully I improved all my skills, all my shots, plus hopefully I’m better physically, mental part and that’s why I hope I’m a better player.”


It was not an easy match for Rublev, who let slip a break advantage in the second set. But he took advantage of a double fault from World No. 116 Taberner to get back on track and move through without needing to play a deciding set.

Rublev said it took time for him to get used to the conditions, which were slower than they are during the day in the California desert.

“It’s super tough to hit a winner and it’s a huge difference compared to when you practise even in the afternoon at 4 p.m. or 3 p.m.,” Rublev said. “But it’s part of our sport. Sometimes you play late matches and this can happen. The way I played today, I really enjoyed and we’ll see what’s going to happen next.”

Rublev’s next opponent, Paul, ousted 28th seed Dusan Lajovic 6-2, 6-3. The Russian leads the pair’s ATP Head2Head Series, but their past two meetings — both of which came on clay — went to a deciding set.

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Medvedev Magnificent Against McDonald In Indian Wells

  • Posted: Oct 10, 2021

Daniil Medvedev arrived in Indian Wells with a 3-3 record at the BNP Paribas Open. But on Saturday evening the Russian star consolidated his status as tournament favourite with a resounding 6-4, 6-2 win against American Mackenzie McDonald to reach the third round.

“I’m actually really pleased, because usually I haven’t played well in Indian Wells and I haven’t been playing that well in practices before [the tournament],” Medvedev said in his on-court interview. “[I am] really happy with my performance. That’s the most important [thing] no matter how I played before the tournament.”

The recent US Open champion has been in dominant form lately, winning 17 of his past 18 matches and 38 of his past 41 sets. Medvedev will next play American Marcos Giron or Serbian Filip Krajinovic. 

The top seed put his wide array of skills on display in front of the evening crowd inside Stadium 1, from playing stout defence to producing jaw-dropping winners. He did not face a break point against the World No. 57, and broke McDonald’s serve three times to triumph in one hour and 13 minutes.

“Mackenzie is a really strong opponent, he can put pressure on everybody,” Medvedev said. “I’m happy to be through quite fast.” 


Medvedev is not just winning, he is doing so convincingly. Of the past 38 sets he has won, the Russian has been extended further than 6-4 just four times. He will next try to move past the third round at this event for the first time.

Did You Know?
The World No. 2 now leads McDonald 5-0 in their ATP Head2Head series and 11-0 in sets. 

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Behind The Scenes With Tsitsipas In Indian Wells

  • Posted: Oct 10, 2021

Stefanos Tsitsipas is the second seed at the BNP Paribas Open, where he will attempt to win his first hard-court ATP Masters 1000 title. But before he plays his first match of the event against Spaniard Pedro Martinez, Tsitsipas completed a media day circuit on Wednesday. went behind the scenes with Tsitsipas…

4:42 p.m. – Tsitsipas was early for his media day. The Greek walked from the locker room to the main press conference room in Indian Wells, where he spoke to the world’s press over Zoom. The 2019 Nitto ATP Finals champion discussed why the BNP Paribas Open “feels like a big thing”, reflected on his experience at the Laver Cup in Boston, and more.

After 15 minutes, Tsitsipas departed and took a three-minute walk to a room where Tennis Channel had a special set erected for the taping of an upcoming segment with various players.

4:58 p.m. – After wiping his sneakers on a special pad meant to remove dirt from the soles, Tsitsipas walked onto the set and introduced himself to host Michael Kosta, a comedian who climbed as high as No. 864 in the FedEx ATP Rankings nearly two decades ago.

“I’m Michael,” Kosta said. “We’re going to chat. We’re going to have fun.”

5:02 p.m. – During the interview, Tsitsipas showed both a spontaneous side and a thoughtful side. The Greek clearly took the time to give the best answer possible and often paused for a minute to think.

As fans have learned during his ascent, Tsitsipas loves technology, especially cameras. The 23-year-old was quick to figure out which cameras to look at and when to do so.

“Good things come from putting the intensity,” Tsitsipas said.

He is open to his fans, allowing them to get an inside look at his personality. Not every player would be willing to discuss crying behind a car as a child on television, but the Greek did not hesitate in this segment.

5:11 p.m. – The interview wrapped and Tsitsipas asked his team, “Can we do more of these?”

The World No. 3 did not rush out the door and instead looked over questions that were not used during the interview to consider how he would have answered.

Stefanos Tsitsipas

5:17 p.m. – Tsitsipas arrived on the TV balcony at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden, where broadcasters staged their crews for Media Day. He waved to the excited fans below.

“Can you wave again?” one of the fans shouts. Tsitsipas happily obliged.

The Greek first spoke with ATP Media, where he pulled out a Tsitsipasian philosophical nugget.

“Try and enjoy what you’re doing out on the court and just don’t always expect results. The results will come if you structure it the right way,” he said. “Sometimes I think we obsess over just putting too much into it and giving too much and sometimes you just have to take a step back and have a better view of the whole situation, of what you are trying to do.”

5:27 p.m. – Tsitipas completed his first interview on the balcony, and moved less than 10 feet to his left to record lines for the BNP Paribas Open.

“Welcome to Tennis Paradise,” the Greek said with a smile.

5:31 p.m. – The seven-time ATP Tour titlist moved to another broadcaster. During the interview, he discussed how his goal for the season was to qualify for the Nitto ATP Finals in Turin. One of three singles players who has already qualified, Tsitsipas added that he wants to finish the year inside the Top 3 of the FedEx ATP Rankings.

5:38 p.m. – Tsitsipas took a few steps to the final stop of his media tour, where cameramen prepared to film him completing a volley challenge. But first, the 23-year-old asked about their interview setup, curious about when they would use a boom microphone rather than a lavalier microphone to record sound.

After completing the volley challenge against the balcony wall, Tsitsipas wanted to try it again. His reaction to his effort was to ask himself a question: “Stick to singles?”

Tsitsipas will play Martinez on Sunday in a rematch of their encounter in the second round of Roland Garros earlier this year, won by the Greek in straight sets.

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Zverev & Struff Take Out Sixth Seeds In Indian Wells

  • Posted: Oct 10, 2021

Alexander Zverev and Jan-Lennard Struff upset sixth seeds Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares in straight sets Saturday, advancing to the second round with a 6-4, 6-4 win at the BNP Paribas Open.

The unseeded pairing, which reached the quarter-finals at the Tokyo Olympics, broke serve four times and fired six aces. The Germans will next take on Canadian Denis Shapovalov and Indian Rohan Bopanna for a place in the quarter-finals.

There was another upset Saturday as Fabio Fognini and Lorenzo Sonego, in their second match as a team, defeated the third-seeded pairing of Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos 3-6, 6-3, 10-8. In their only previous match together, the Italians lost in straight sets in the first round at this year’s National Bank Open Presented by Rogers.

Granollers and Zeballos have been in top form as a tandem in 2021, winning three ATP Tour titles, including two ATP Masters 1000 victories in Madrid and Cincinnati. They had won 13 of their past 15 matches prior to this meeting.

In other action, 2021 Hamburg champions Tim Puetz and Michael Venus outlasted the all-Spanish team of Pablo Carreno Busta and Carlos Alcaraz with a 7-5, 6-7(5), 15-13 victory. Puetz/Venus won on their ninth match point, while Carreno Busta and Alcaraz failed to convert any of their six match-point opportunities.

Ivan Dodig and Marcelo Melo also advanced with a 6-7(6), 7-5, 10-2 come-from-behind victory over Cristian Garin and Santiago Gonzalez. The eighth seeds came back from a 2-5 deficit in the second set, winning the next five games and the match tie-break to set up a meeting with Belgians Sander Gille and Joran Vliegen.

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Murray & Swiatek's Indian Wells Meeting: From Twitter To Reality

  • Posted: Oct 10, 2021

Andy Murray walked onto Practice Court 14 on Saturday at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden with a wide smile on his face, and it was not because of the practice itself. Waiting for him was WTA star and 2020 Roland Garros champion Iga Swiatek.

After winning her opening match at the BNP Paribas Open Friday, Swiatek joined the Tennis Channel desk, where she discussed the time she practised with Rafael Nadal. When asked who her dream hitting partner would be this week, she chose another former World No. 1.

“I would love to play with Andy Murray,” Swiatek said. “We actually had a little chat on Twitter, so maybe it’s going to be possible right now to finally play. He also seems like such a nice guy, a good sense of humour.”

That caught Murray’s attention, and later that evening he publicly invited her for a hit.

Swiatek practised earlier in the day, but she walked out to the court — where there was a sizable crowd and about a dozen photographers and videographers — to chat with Murray. After the Polish star spoke for a few minutes with Murray’s coach, Jamie Delgado, Murray arrived and promptly gave his colleague a handshake. 

The pair spoke for a few minutes, with both laughing throughout the conversation. Murray then began his session to prepare for his second-round match against Carlos Alcaraz, and Swiatek departed to get ready for her clash against Veronika Kudermetova.

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