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Hurkacz Blunts Tsonga Attack

  • Posted: Feb 07, 2022

Hubert Hurkacz bounced back from a disappointing second-round defeat at the Australian Open by advancing at the ABN Amro World Tennis Tournament on Monday.

The fourth seed, who lost to Adrian Mannarino in Melbourne, moved past French wild card Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 6-4, 7-6(7) in one hour and 32 minutes in their first ATP Head2Head meeting.

“Jo is an amazing player and competitor,” Hurkacz said in his on-court interview. “He brought a really high level and it was a really tough match for me and he is definitely on the way back. Jo has achieved so much in his career and playing against him you can see why with his shots and his serve. I appreciated playing him and I am happy with the win today.”

Hurkacz is making his third appearance in Rotterdam and was strong on serve against the former World No. 5, firing nine aces and winning 83 per cent (33/40) of points behind his first delivery to triumph. The four-time tour-level titlist also saved two set points in the second-set tie-break at 5/6 and 6/7.

The Pole enjoyed a standout 2021 season, winning his maiden ATP Masters 1000 crown in Miami, before competing at the Nitto ATP Finals. However, this week he will be aiming to reach his first quarter-final at an ATP 500 event since 2019, when he advanced to the last eight in Dubai.

The World No. 11 will next meet #NextGenATP Italian Lorenzo Musetti or Swede Mikael Ymer in the second round.

Tsonga lifted the trophy in Rotterdam in 2017 and was trying to earn his second-tour level victory of the season on Monday.

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Lajovic Saves 3 MPs, Edges Paire In Buenos Aires

  • Posted: Feb 07, 2022

Dusan Lajovic snatched victory from the jaws of defeat on Monday at the Argentina Open to reach the second round in Buenos Aires.

The fifth seed overcame Frenchman Benoit Paire 4-6, 6-4, 7-6(3), saving three match points en route to his two-hour, four-minute victory at the ATP 250 tournament.

The Serbian, who is a two-time quarter-finalist in Buenos Aires, saved three match points at 5-4, 40/0 on Paire’s serve as he demonstrated his fighting qualities in a hard-fought encounter. Lajovic rallied from a break down three times in the decider, before finding his top level in the tie-break to triumph.


The 31-year-old now leads Paire 3-2 in their ATP Head2Head series, with this his second victory over the World No. 50 on clay (Sao Paulo 2016). Lajovic will play either clay-court specialist Pablo Cuevas or Argentine Federico Coria in the second round. The 36-year-old Cuevas is a six-time tour-level champion, with all of his titles coming on clay.

Paire, who was making his third appearance in Buenos Aires, was looking to build on his Australian Open third-round run this week in Argentina.

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Koolhof/Skupski Open Rotterdam Campaign With Victory

  • Posted: Feb 07, 2022

Wesley Koolhof and Neal Skupski began their bid for a third tour-level title of the season together with victory on Monday at the ABN Amro World Tennis Tournament.

The fourth seeds edged Russians Karen Khachanov and Andrey Rublev 5-7, 7-5, 10-7 in one hour and 45 minutes to reach the second round in Rotterdam.

Koolhof and Skupski had not teamed prior to this year, but have flourished together since joining forces, clinching tour-level trophies at the Melbourne Summer Set and Adelaide International 2 in January.

In a hard-fought performance against Khachanov and Rublev, the Dutch-British tandem struck five aces and broke twice to move to 12-1 on the season. They will next face either Andrey Golubev and Edouard Roger-Vasselin or Rohan Bopanna and Denis Shapovalov.

Lloyd Harris and Tim Puetz also moved through at the ATP 500 tournament, downing Tallon Griekspoor and Botic van de Zandschulp 6-3, 7-6(3).

Harris and Puetz are teaming for the first time this week and will next meet second seeds Ivan Dodig and Marcelo Melo or ATP singles stars Felix Auger-Aliassime and Hubert Hurkacz.

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De Minaur Puts Foot Down In Rotterdam

  • Posted: Feb 07, 2022

Australian Alex de Minaur maintained his strong start to the season Monday, downing David Goffin 6-0, 6-3 to reach the second round at the ABN Amro World Tennis Tournament.

The World No. 34 arrives in Rotterdam off the back of a personal-best performance at the Australian Open, where he advanced to the fourth round in Melbourne for the first time.

Fuelled with confidence, de Minaur dictated throughout against Goffin at the ATP 500 event. He broke five times, demonstrating great movement to force the Belgian into errors, while also powering his flat groundstrokes through the court to advance after 75 minutes. With his victory, the 22-year-old has improved his ATP Head2Head record against the World No. 47 to 3-0.

“I think I played really well,” de Minaur said. “I played exactly how I wanted to. My coach and I set up a plan about how we wanted to play this match and I managed to execute it. It is a very good feeling. Mentally I thought I was very solid and positive and that is one of the main aspects I am trying to focus on this year.”


De Minaur, who is making his second appearance in Rotterdam, is now 6-3 on the season, having also earned ATP Cup wins against World No. 6 Matteo Berrettini and Frenchman Ugo Humbert.

The five-time tour-level titlist will next face Mackenzie McDonald after the American cruised past eighth seed Nikoloz Basilashvili 6-3, 6-2 in 67 minutes.

McDonald, currently at a career-high No. 49 in the ATP Rankings, fired five aces and won 79 per cent (31/39) of his first-serve points en route to his victory over the Georgian. The 26-year-old was making his debut at the indoor-hard tournament and now leads Basilashvili 1-0 in their ATP Head2Head series.

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Bublik Climbs To Career-High, Mover Of Week

  • Posted: Feb 07, 2022

No. 31 Alexander Bublik, +4 (Career High)

The 24-year-old has jumped four spots to a career-high No. 31 in the ATP Rankings after he clinched his maiden tour-level title at the Open Sud de France. Bublik, who was competing in his fifth ATP Tour final, earned his first Top 5 win in the championship match, overcoming World No. 3 Alexander Zverev in straight sets in Montpellier. Read Montpellier Final Report & Watch Highlights.

View Latest ATP Rankings

No. 32 Albert Ramos-Vinolas, +12
The Spaniard has risen 12 places after he lifted his fourth tour-level trophy at the Cordoba Open. The 34-year-old did not drop a set en route to the championship match, before he defeated Chile’s Alejandro Tabilo in the final to earn his fourth title on clay. Read Cordoba Final Report & Watch Highlights.

No. 71 Emil Ruusuvuori, +16
The 22-year-old continued his strong start to the season by reaching his first tour-level final at the Tata Open Maharashtra in Pune. The Finn, who also advanced to the last four at the Melbourne Summer Set in January, did not drop a set during his run to the title match, defeating 2020 champion Jiri Vesely in the quarter-finals.

No. 86, Joao Sousa, +51
Sousa has soared back into the Top 100 of the ATP Rankings for the first time since last February after he won his fourth tour-level crown in Pune. The 32-year-old rolled back the years at the ATP 250 event, defeating seeds Gianluca Mager, Daniel Altmaier and Ruusuvuori. Read Pune Final Report & Watch Highlights.

Other Notable Top 100 Movers
No. 47 David Goffin, +5
No. 49 Mackenzie McDonald, +7 (Career High)
No. 50 Benoit Paire, +4
No. 75 Mikael Ymer, +8
No. 79 Kamil Majchrzak, +16 (Career High)
No. 88 Holger Rune, +9 (Career High)
No. 94 Thanasi Kokkinakis, +7
No. 95 Andy Murray, +7
No. 98 Radu Albot, +10

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Gonzalez/Molteni Lift Cordoba Doubles Trophy

  • Posted: Feb 07, 2022

Santiago Gonzalez and Andres Molteni won their third ATP Tour doubles title together on Sunday when they defeated Andrej Martin and Tristan-Samuel Weissborn 7-5, 6-3 for the Cordoba Open trophy.

Gonzalez and Molteni are now 19-7 since they became a team at last year’s US Open. They also claimed trophies last year in Nur-Sultan and Stockholm.

The Mexican-Argentine pair had to claw through Match Tie-breaks in their first two matches. But they found their best form as the tournament went on. The top seeds did not lose a set in the semi-final or final.

Their impressive serving was critical in the championship clash. Gonzalez and Molteni saved four of the five break points they faced and won 75 per cent of their service points overall to triumph after one hour and 17 minutes.

Martin and Weissborn had only competed together once before this week, but they took advantage of their spot as an alternate team by winning two Match Tie-breaks to advance to the final.

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Ramos-Vinolas Spoils Tabilo's Dream Run With Incredible Comeback In Cordoba Final

  • Posted: Feb 07, 2022

Albert Ramos-Vinolas spoiled Alejandro Tabilo’s dream run on Sunday at the Cordoba Open, rallying past the Chilean 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 to claim his fourth ATP Tour title.

For most of the evening it appeared the veteran lefty was destined to fall short in the Cordoba championship match for the second consecutive year. But the Spaniard battled from a break down in the second set and two breaks down in the decider to triumph after two hours and 41 minutes.

“I’m really happy. Incredible for me to have the fourth title. It was very difficult today,” Ramos-Vinolas said. “I was almost lost, and somehow I came back. I cannot be more happy.”

In last year’s final, Ramos-Vinolas lost in the final against Juan Manuel Cerundolo, who like Tabilo went on a dream run on the Argentine clay. But the 34-year-old did not suffer the same fate twice, winning the final five games of the match from 1/4 down in the third set to triumph. After Tabilo missed a final backhand long, Ramos-Vinolas fell to the court in celebration.

“I don’t know [how I came back] to be honest. I think I played a little bit more aggressive from 1-4 [in the third]. He missed some first serves. He was serving good and I started to return a little bit more aggressively than before,” Ramos-Vinolas said. “When [I came back from] 1-4 to 3-4, I was feeling I had a chance.”

World No. 144 Tabilo, a qualifier, had never reached an ATP Tour quarter-final before this week. The Chilean ATP Cup star blazed through the qualifying and main draws without losing a set until the final. In the semi-finals, he stunned top seed and home favourite Diego Schwartzman in straight sets.

The 24-year-old was in position to close out Ramos-Vinolas, too. But the former World No. 17 was too solid in the crucial moments and forced Tabilo to beat him.

“It was a tough match. Still pretty happy with the whole week. Had a few chances at the end, but fell short. Still a positive match,” Tabilo said. “Obviously there are little details to finish the match, which took over, a little bit of nerves. I’ve just got to learn from these mistakes, get some experience and hopefully next time I can do better.”

Tabilo fought hard until the last point despite losing his double-break advantage in the third set. At 4-4, he earned a break point. Had he converted it, he would have served for the championship.

But Ramos-Vinolas hit a big serve down the ’T’ to get out of trouble and never looked back. The 2017 Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters finalist broke his opponent’s serve seven times in his victory.

The Spaniard has won more matches than any other player in Cordoba Open history with 12 (12-3). He also eliminared Slovakian Andrej Martin, Peruvian Juan Pablo Varillas, fourth seed Lorenzo Sonego and 2019 Cordoba champion Juan Ignacio Londero this week.

“For me it was a very good week here last year and this year also. I’m really happy I made the final last year,” Ramos-Vinolas said. “It’s not revenge for me.”

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