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Cilic Secures Tie For Croatia

  • Posted: Nov 25, 2021

Marin Cilic stepped up Thursday at the Davis Cup Finals, overcoming Alex de Minaur to give Croatia a 2-0 lead against Australia in Group D at the Pala Alpitour in Turin.

The World No. 30, who helped guide Croatia to the Davis Cup title in 2018, fired 29 winners and rallied from a break down in the third set to secure victory after two hours and 10 minutes.

“It is such a great occasion to be back on the court playing for Croatia,” Cilic said. “We have not had a match in the past 20 months. It was a pleasure to play against team Australia, they were fighting strong. Every match is important.”

Earlier, Borna Gojo earned just his second Top 100 win when he downed Alexei Popyrin 7-6(5), 7-5 to give Croatia a 1-0 lead.

The 23-year-old fired eight aces and saved all five break points he faced against the World No. 61 to secure victory in one hour and 52 minutes.

“It feels amazing,” Gojo said. “We have unbelievable support here, I would like to thank everyone who came from Croatia. It is a big win for me, but I am here as part of team Croatia and we need three points.

“He was probably the better player in the first set, but I knew if I focused on my serve and stayed close, I would have a chance eventually. We had a close one in Australia at the beginning of the year, so I knew I could compete with him.”

Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic will play De Minaur and John Peers in doubles in the final match on Thursday.

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Ymer Brothers Guide Sweden To Victory

  • Posted: Nov 25, 2021

Mikael Ymer followed in his brother’s footsteps on Thursday at the Davis Cup Finals, defeating Vasek Pospisil 6-4, 6-4 to give Sweden a 2-0 lead against Canada in Group B in Madrid.

Elias Ymer gave Sweden winning start when he overcame Canadian Steven Diez 6-4, 6-2 in 88 minutes. The 25-year-old was dominant throughout, winning 82 per cent (23/28) of his first-serve points and breaking five times to secure victory.

“I felt I played well,” Ymer said. “I really like Madrid. The court and the city are amazing. I am really happy I gave Sweden a good start and now I can support my brother next. You don’t see this often, two brothers playing No. 1 and No. 2 for their country. It is a very special occasion.”

The World No. 171’s younger brother then produced a strong performance to defeat Pospisil in the second match of the tie, saving the one break point he faced to secure victory after one hour and 31 minutes.

Andre Goransson and Robert Lindstedt moved Sweden into a final 3-0 lead when they defeated Pospisil and Brayden Schnur 7-6(5), 6-4 in the doubles.

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Herbert/Mahut Win Tie For France

  • Posted: Nov 25, 2021

Nitto ATP Finals champions Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut completed the French comeback Thursday at the Davis Cup Finals, defeating Tomas Machac and Jiri Lehecka 3-6, 6-4, 6-3 to secure a 2-1 victory against Czech Republic in Group C.

The pair saved four of five break points and hit five aces in Innsbruck, Austria, to win the tie for France after two hours and five minutes.

“It was difficult because the Czech team played very well, and we arrived late from Turin,” Mahut said. “I thought we had a slow start, but the second set and third set we played well.”

“We got used to the conditions,” Herbert added. “We needed the whole staff to get the energy up and we tried to be really positive and we managed to turn the match around.”

Machac had given Czech Republic an early advantage when he sprung a surprise, defeating Richard Gasquet 7-6(3), 6-2 on his Davis Cup Finals debut.

The World No. 143 rallied back from a break down in the first set and committed just seven unforced errors to secure victory after one hour and 36 minutes in their first Head2Head meeting.

“It feels really good,” Machac said. “I am so happy I played today and won today for the Czech Republic. It was a really tough match from the beginning, mentally especially. I am really happy. In the tie-break I played really well without any mistakes. That was the crucial moment.”

Adrian Mannarino then drew France level, downing Jiri Vesely 6-7(1), 6-4, 6-2. The 33-year-old won 77 per cent (51/66) of his first-serve points and caused Vesely problems with his consistent depth on return to secure victory after two hours and 38 minutes.

“I was trying my best to keep fighting,” Mannarino said. “I served very well in the key moments, which helps. I got used to the speed of his serve. He was serving very fast and at the beginning it was tough. On his second serve at the end, I was putting a lot of pressure on it.”

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ATP Releases Calendar For Opening Half Of 2022 Season

  • Posted: Nov 25, 2021

The ATP has announced the calendar for the first half of the 2022 ATP Tour season, kicking off in January with the third edition of the ATP Cup in Sydney, Australia, through to the end of The Championships, Wimbledon in July.

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The new season launches with the ATP Cup, staged in partnership with Tennis Australia. The 2022 edition will feature a 16-team field and be hosted across two venues in Sydney – Ken Rosewall Arena and the Qudos Bank Arena – both at Sydney Olympic Park. As part of a reconfigured opening section of the season, Week 1 will also feature two ATP 250 events running in parallel to the ATP Cup, at the Adelaide International and Melbourne Park. Week 2 will feature two ATP 250s, including a second event at the Adelaide International and the Sydney Tennis Classic, a new one-off event, alongside Australian Open qualifying in Melbourne.

Elsewhere, the Qatar ExxonMobil Open in Doha, traditionally held in Week 1, will be played in Week 7 in 2022, immediately followed by the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships. As previously announced, the ASB Classic in Auckland (ATP 250) will not be held in 2022 due to complications related to COVID-19.

All other events through Wimbledon are scheduled to occur in their customary week in the calendar, with details of the remaining section of the calendar to be communicated in due course.

Andrea Gaudenzi, ATP Chairman, said: “We’re delighted to announce the calendar and give our fans visibility for the first half of the 2022 ATP Tour season. Tennis has had to adapt to fluid circumstances since the start of the pandemic and, while we continue to navigate its challenges, today’s announcement is a positive milestone in our continued return. We cannot wait to kick off another exciting season and welcome back to the calendar those events that were unfortunately unable to stage last year. I would like to credit the hard work of our players and tournaments that has allowed us to reach this point.”

View the 2022 calendar here.

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