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Bolelli/Fognini Advance In Paris, Keep Turin Hopes Alive

  • Posted: Nov 01, 2022

Bolelli/Fognini Advance In Paris, Keep Turin Hopes Alive

Italians sit 10th in Doubles Race

Simone Bolelli and Fabio Fognini kept alive their bid to qualify for the Nitto ATP Finals with an opening-round win on Tuesday at the Rolex Paris Masters. The Italians earned a 7-6(5), 6-3 result against Santiago Gonzalez and Lukasz Kubot as they seek to improve upon their 10th-place position in the Pepperstone ATP Live Doubles Teams Rankings.

Bolelli/Fognini will need to finish in the Top 7 to guarantee their place in Turin.

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Kokkinakis & Kyrgios Qualify For Nitto ATP Finals

In the Paris opening round, the Italians twice battled back from a break down in the opening set before winning the tie-break from 2/4. A single break decided the second set, with the breakthrough coming in the sixth game before a pair of love holds from Bolelli/Fognini finished the match.

After winning the lone doubles match on Tuesday at the ATP Masters 1000 event, the pair will face Rohan Bopanna and Matwe Middelkoop in the second round.

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Preview: Felix Has That Winning Feeling

  • Posted: Nov 01, 2022

Preview: Felix Has That Winning Feeling

Alcaraz, Nadal, Medvedev Tsitsipas also on a bumper Wednesday card

As Felix Auger-Aliassime closes on a maiden berth at the Nitto ATP Finals, the qualifying scenario for the Canadian in Paris this week is simple: Keep winning.

The 22-year-old has been doing a lot of that lately, amassing a 13-match win streaking that he will take into his second-round clash with Swedish qualifier Mikael Ymer on Wednesday. Leading Andrey Rublev, Taylor Fritz and Hubert Hurkacz in the battle to claim the last two spots in Turin, Felix is already highly likely to qualify, but he can make a certainty of it by going deeper in the draw than at least two of his rivals.

Four of the Top-5 seeds are also in action Wednesday, including World No. 1 Carlos Alcaraz and 22-time major champion Rafael Nadal.

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Felix, who boasts a 53-24 match record in 2022, has won four titles this season (Rotterdam, Florence, Antwerp, Basel), all of which have come on indoor hard courts. The Montreal native collected a trio of titles before arriving at the ATP Masters 1000 event in Paris and now the eighth seed looks to continue his hot streak.

“For sure I didn’t expect this run [three straight titles],” Felix said. “Day-by-day, things clicked and I was playing better and better. Hopefully this run keeps going.

“I do enjoy these courts, playing indoors. I enjoy Paris. There’s no reason why I shouldn’t be able to play well here.”

The Canadian, who is sixth in the Pepperstone ATP Live Race To Turin, aims to strengthen his chances to make his debut at the prestigious Nitto ATP Finals, held from 13-20 November.

Fritz, who is eighth in the Race, hopes to keep alive his chances of qualifying for the Nitto ATP Finals for the first time. The American will take on home favourite Gilles Simon, who rallied from a set down to defeat Andy Murray. The Frenchman, who reached a career-high No. 6 in January 2009 and claimed 14 Tour-level titles, is set to bid farewell to his career this week.

Alcaraz, who holds a season-leading five Tour-level titles, begins his quest for his third ATP Masters 1000 crown (Miami & Madrid 2022). The 19-year-old looks to continue his standout season as he takes on Japan’s Yoshihito Nishioka in a second-round clash.

<a href=''>Carlos Alcaraz</a> takes on <a href=''>Yoshihito Nishioka</a> in the second round at the <a href=''>Rolex Paris Masters</a>.

“Since the end of the US Open, my goal has been to try and end the year as World No. 1,” Alcaraz said. “I have two big tournaments ahead, Paris and Turin. I’m going to try and show my best level.”

Nadal, who is competing in his first tournament since becoming a father, is seeking his first Rolex Paris Masters title. Should the 36-year-old be crowned champion, he will make up ground on countryman Alcaraz in the battle for year-end No. 1 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings. The Spaniard will kick off the Wednesday evening session against American Tommy Paul.

“I am excited to be here,” Nadal said. “I am here to try my best. Hopefully I will be ready for tomorrow [Wednesday], and I’m going to try to be competitive. Let’s see. I am excited about it.”

Other intriguing second-round matches Wednesday include Stefanos Tsitsipas taking on Daniel Evans, while 2020 Paris champion Daniil Medvedev meets Australian Alex de Minaur. 12th seed Cameron Norrie will close out the evening session on Court Central against French qualifier Corentin Moutet.

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Djokovic Makes Sharp Start To Paris Title Defence

  • Posted: Nov 01, 2022

Djokovic Makes Sharp Start To Paris Title Defence

Serbian awaits Khachanov or Huesler in third round

Playing for the first time since winning back-to-back indoor titles in early October, Novak Djokovic extended his win streak to 10 with a clinical victory against Maxime Cressy on Tuesday at the Rolex Paris Masters.

In a 7-6(1), 6-4 win against the Paris-born American, Djokovic was imperious on serve, which freed him up in his attempts to unlock Cressy’s booming delivery. The Serbian finally made his breakthrough on return to lead 5-4 in the second set as he converted on his fifth break point before serving out the match with ease.

“It was very intense, just a lot of pressure,” he said post-match. “When you play someone that serves this well — first and second serve — you don’t have much room to relax and maybe play kind of a softer few games. You just have to be on your toes all the time. Credit to him for serving big in some big moments. I had my chances [in the] first set to break him, second as well.

“A break came at the right time, perfect time actually. I was very pleased with the way I held my serve, didn’t face a break point,” he added, noting the fast conditions that made it even harder to return.

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Cressy hung tough in the opening set, saving three break points with his all-out attack, but two double faults in the tie-break were more than enough for Djokovic to seal the set. The American hit 15 aces and 10 double faults overall as he remained committed to his aggressive game plan. While the strategy was effective on his own serve, he could not make inroads on Djokovic’s delivery, with the Serb losing just six points on serve and not facing a break point.

“I had to lock in, I had to not give him gifts and points,” Djokovic said. “What I could do and what I wanted to do is to really do what I do best, which is just be solid from the back of the court and wait for the opportunities when they are presented, try to capitalise on them… Just overall very pleased with the way I felt and the way I played.”

Despite many short points, the sixth seed was still able to flash his athleticism throughout the one-hour, 43-minute match — particularly on a backhand passing shot that helped him to the decisive break in set two, after which he basked in the adoration of the Paris crowd

The Serbian’s stellar returning was on full display against one of the ATP Tour’s biggest servers, his brilliance in that particular department illustrated by his INSIGHTS: Shot Quality score, which is measured on a 10-point scale.

Insights: Djokovic vs. Cressy

Djokovic was full of praise for his opponent’s unique game following the match, and he described how Cressy’s serve-and-volley style affected his approach on return.

“It does change a lot because not only do you have to get the return back, but you hav to put it under his feet, which is very difficult to do,” he explained. “It’s nice to see someone that comes in after fist and second serve,” he said. “It just gives a different look from the tennis fans’ point of view. I appreciate that, I respect that. It takes courage to play with this modern tennis nowadays this kind of style that is almost an ancient style. You don’t have many players that do that. Possibly he’s the only one at the top.”

Djokovic has now won 24 straight matches against Americans and also owns a 10-match win streak in Paris dating back to his title runs in 2019 and 2021 (he did not play in 2020). He is seeking his fifth title of the season after triumphs at Rome, Wimbledon, Tel Aviv and Astana, the latter two coming in consecutive weeks spanning from September to October.

Those results have helped the Serbian to qualify for the 2022 Nitto ATP Finals later this month. He is one of six players already confirmed for Turin, joining Carlos Alcaraz, Rafael Nadal, Stefanos Tsitsipas, Casper Ruud and Daniil Medvedev.

Did You Know?
Djokovic is the only player to win all nine ATP Masters 1000 events, completing the Career Golden Masters twice on his way to a record 38 titles at the prestigious level.

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Nadal Thinking Of Home, But Focused On Paris

  • Posted: Nov 01, 2022

Nadal Thinking Of Home, But Focused On Paris

Spaniard chasing first Rolex Paris Masters title

Even after 21 years as a touring pro, Rafael Nadal still finds it difficult to leave his home on the idyllic Spanish island of Mallorca. But this week’s journey to the Rolex Paris Masters is tougher than normal, with the 22-time major champion having to leave behind not only his wife, but, for the first time, their new-born son.

“It’s a different approach compared to usual,” Nadal said. “Always has been tough to leave home. It’s quite interesting how even after two or three weeks, to leave your son at home and not be able to see him, it’s interesting how even after only three weeks knowing him, you start missing him.

“All the changes are difficult in this life, and you need to adapt to it. It’s at the same time true that we are lucky today that, with technology, we can do video calls any time you want, so that always helps.”

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As the Spaniard turns his attention to the indoor hard court event in the French capital, the World No. 2 looks to this season’s haul of four titles, including the Australian Open and Roland Garros crowns. Nadal is seeking his first Rolex Paris Masters title. Should the 36-year-old claim the title in Paris, he will make up ground on countryman Carlos Alcaraz in the battle for year-end No. 1 Pepperstone ATP Rankings.

But conditions in Paris bring their own challenges.

“You need to be confident,” Nadal said. “You need to play aggressive. It’s a surface that if you are not serving well, that’s the toughest part. You need to have automatic things like this [serve], because a couple of mistakes, it’s not like clay where you can have time to come back. If you lose your serve, then you are in big trouble.”

Boasting a 38-5 record in 2022, Nadal sets his sights on a strong finish to the year at the final ATP Masters 1000 event of the season before heading to Turin, Italy for the Nitto ATP Finals.

“It’s true that it has been an amazing year in terms of results,” Nadal said. “At the same time, it’s true that it has been a tough year in terms of injuries. Just excited to be here. I am here to try my best. Hopefully I will be ready for tomorrow, and I’m going to try to be competitive. Let’s see. I am excited about it.”

Nadal, seeded second, will play American Tommy Paul (1-0 Head2Head) in his opening match Wednesday.

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Milan 2022: Draws, Dates, History & All You Need To Know

  • Posted: Nov 01, 2022

Milan 2022: Draws, Dates, History & All You Need To Know

All about the indoor hard-court 21-and-under event in Milan, Italy

The world’s best 21-and-under players will compete at the Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals in Milan next week, with home favourite Lorenzo Musetti and Dane Holger Rune leading the eight-man playing field.

Here is what you need to know ahead of the event in Italy.

When is the Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals?

The 2022 Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen Finals will be held from 8-12 November. The indoor hard-court event, established in 2017, will take place at the Allianz Cloud in Milan. The tournament director is Ross Hutchins.

What is the format & who is playing at the 2022 Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals?

The event in Milan will see eight 21-and-under players divided into two groups of four, with the top two from each group advancing to the semi-finals. Matches are played best of five sets and first-to-four games. Lorenzo Musetti, Holger Rune, Jack Draper, Brandon Nakashima, Jiri Lehecka, Chun-Hsin Tseng, Francesco Passaro and Dominic Stricker will compete.

When is the draw for the Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals?

The Milan draw will be made on Saturday 5 November at 12:00 p.m.

What is the schedule for the Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals?

* Main Draw Round-Robin Matches: Tuesday 8 November – Thursday 10 November at 2: 00 p.m., second match n/b 3:00 p.m.. Evening sessions at 7:30 p.m., followed by second match.
* Semi-final One: Friday 11 November at 7:00 p.m.
* Semi-final Two: Friday 11 November n/b 9:00 p.m.
* Final: Saturday 12 November at 9:00 p.m.

View On Official Website

What is the prize money for the Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals?

The prize money for the Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals is $1,400,000.

Undefeated Champion: $432,750
Final Win: $153,000
Semi-Final Win: $113,500
Each Round-Robin Match Win: $28,000
Participation Fee: $82,250
Alternate: $13,000

How can I watch the Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals?

View TV Schedule

How can I follow the Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals?

Hashtag: #NextGenATP
Facebook: Next Gen ATP Finals
Twitter: @nextgenfinals
Instagram: @nextgenfinals

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Who won the last edition of the Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals in 2021?

Carlos Alcaraz won the 2021 singles title in Milan with a 4-3(5), 4-2, 4-2 victory against Sebastian Korda in the championship match (Read & Watch).

Who holds the Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals record for most titles, oldest champion, youngest champion and more?

Most Titles, Singles: Hyeon Chung (1), Stefanos Tsitsipas (1), Jannik Sinner (1), Carlos Alcaraz (1)
Oldest Champion: Hyeon Chung, 21, in 2017
Youngest Champion: Jannik Sinner, 18, in 2019, Carlos Alcaraz, 18, in 2021
Highest-Ranked Champion: No. 15 Stefanos Tsitsipas in 2018
Lowest-Ranked Champion: No. 95 Jannik Sinner in 2019
Last Home Champion: Jannik Sinner in 2019
Most Match Wins: Alex de Minaur (8)

View Who Is Playing, Past Champions, Seeds, Points & Prize Money Breakdown

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From Studying Sampras To Facing Djokovic: Cressy's Serve & Volley Journey

  • Posted: Nov 01, 2022

From Studying Sampras To Facing Djokovic: Cressy’s Serve & Volley Journey

American will meet Djokovic for the first time in Paris

Novak Djokovic’s admiration of fellow legend Pete Sampras is well documented. Maxime Cressy, who will play Djokovic on Tuesday at the Rolex Paris Masters, not only looked up to Sampras, but is a disciple of the American’s serve-and-volley style.

“I wanted to study [serve-and-volley] patterns, what made them successful, and Pete Sampras was the one player I watched the most since he was one of the most recent serve and volleyers,” Cressy told “I watched a lot of tapes from him and studied his game a lot. I was completely inspired by his way of playing.”

The American began focussing on serve and volleying aged 14, spending countless hours closely analysing his countryman’s serve. Cressy spent the most time watching videos of Sampras serving against Andre Agassi.

“He was hitting a lot of T serves and was having a lot of easy putaway volleys or easy second shots after the ball bounced after hitting T serves. I noticed that would be extremely valuable for my game,” said Cressy, who played college tennis at UCLA. “One tip that one of the assistant coaches at UCLA from when I was there, Grant Chen, gave me [is] that Pete Sampras’ biggest quality was to be unpredictable on the serve. I really took a lot of inspiration from that, a lot of admiration and I started to really analyse how he was making his serve unpredictable.”

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Cressy discovered that the key is the service toss. It should not be a surprise whose toss he studied.

“Based on watching Pete’s serve motion and his toss, my main goal was to have the same exact toss for every single serve I would hit, whether it be a slice serve, a flat serve or a kick serve,” Cressy said. “The opponent does not know which kind of spin I’m going to put on my serve and what spot I’m going to choose.

“The serve I believe is the most difficult shot to master in today’s game and in the game of tennis and it’s also the one shot you practise the most when you’re alone. It was hours and hours of training on my own, with baskets of balls to really get that toss perfectly aligned. It’s about repetition and faith that it would work.”

It has worked so far. When Cressy arrived at UCLA, he struggled to make the lineup and would spend a bulk of his time on the team’s lower practice courts. Now he is one of the most dangerous players on the ATP Tour.

Stella Sampras Webster, the head coach for UCLA’s women’s tennis team and Pete’s sister, has been impressed by Cressy’s rise.

“[It’s] incredible because he came in to UCLA and he barely made the lineup. He definitely had some things he needed to work on,” Sampras Webster said. “But he really figured out his gamestyle and really found his identity. Once he did that, he just exploded. It was really neat to see him come through so well from where he was.”

Although she has not spoken to her brother about Cressy’s ascent, Sampras Webster added that ‘Pistol Pete’ still has an appreciation for serve and volley.

“I’m sure he watches it and I think he appreciates it because he knows how tough it is,” Sampras Webster said. “I think he likes the idea of having some serve and volleyers especially because there just aren’t very many.

“There are so many great grinders out there and that’s just one style to really counter those grinders. Being able to come forward and win points up at the nets just doesn’t give those grinders as much time.”

<a href=''>Maxime Cressy</a>

Cressy claimed his first ATP Tour title earlier this year at the International Tennis Hall of Fame in Newport, where another recent serve-and-volleying star, Todd Martin, is the outgoing CEO.

“Maxime reminds me a lot of how I played. [He] serve and volleys, [is] willing to take risks, understanding that he’s not somebody out there who is meant to hit forehands from the left alley and just pin somebody,” Martin said. “He’s got to be different and it appears as those he really embraces being different.”

According to Martin, Cressy has “a pretty cool toolkit”. Serve and volleying is not a style seen often today’s game, but it has set the American apart.

“I would rather be Cressy than somebody who plays an awful lot like [Carlos] Alcaraz,” Martin said. “I don’t imagine many guys out there are going to be better than Alcaraz at that style of play.”

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Rublev Boosts Turin Chances In Paris

  • Posted: Nov 01, 2022

Rublev Boosts Turin Chances In Paris

The 25-year-old is seventh in the Pepperstone ATP Live Race To Turin

Andrey Rublev strengthened his Nitto ATP Finals chances on Tuesday when he downed big-serving American John Isner 6-2, 6-3 to reach the third round at the Rolex Paris Masters.

The 25-year-old produced a strong returning performance against Isner, breaking three times and winning 83 per cent (10/12) of points on the American’s second service to advance after 62 minutes. With his 49th victory of the season, Rublev has improved to 1-3 in his ATP Head2Head series against Isner.

“It is a really important win at this moment when I am fighting for Turin,” Rublev said. “I think I was a bit lucky. It was his first tournament since his bad injury. From the baseline I was feeling really confident. As soon as I was returning and the ball was in play, I felt I had an advantage and wasn’t nervous.”

Rublev is currently seventh in the Pepperstone ATP Live Race To Turin with 3,530 points. He is in the final qualification spot for the prestigious year-end event, to be held from 13-20 November.

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Rublev’s closest challenger, Taylor Fritz, is in eighth, holding 2,955 points. The American, who defeated Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in his opening match, will next play Gilles Simon.

Ninth-placed Pole Hubert Hurkacz can also still qualify. The 25-year-old, who has 2,870 points, will face Frenchman Adrian Mannarino in the first round later on Tuesday. If Hurkacz can advance and then defeat either Holger Rune or Stan Wawrinka, he would face Rublev in the third round in Paris.

Rafael Nadal, Carlos Alcaraz, Casper Ruud, Stefanos Tsitsipas, Novak Djokovic and Daniil Medvedev have already qualified for the Nitto ATP Finals, with two spots left in the final week of the regular season.

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Kokkinakis & Kyrgios Qualify For Nitto ATP Finals

  • Posted: Nov 01, 2022

Kokkinakis & Kyrgios Qualify For Nitto ATP Finals

Slots for three doubles teams remain

Thanasi Kokkinakis and Nick Kyrgios have qualified for the Nitto ATP Finals, to be played in Turin from 13-20 November.

The Australians are guaranteed a spot under the Grand Slam champion provision, under which if there is a current-year major-winning team positioned between eighth and 20th in the Pepperstone ATP Doubles Team Rankings after the Rolex Paris Masters, that team qualifies for Turin in eighth.

Since Kokkinakis and Kyrgios are ensured of a Top 20 finish and Wimbledon champions Matthew Ebden and Max Purcell cannot catch them, they will compete at the year-end championships, joining Wesley Koolhof/Neal Skupski, Rajeev Ram/Joe Salisbury, Marcelo Arevalo/Jean-Julien Rojer and Nikola Mektic/Mate Pavic in the field.

Kokkinakis and Kyrgios made a splash at the beginning of the season when they went on a dream run to the Australian Open title. The home favourites quickly rallied the Melbourne crowd to their side, defeating a lineup of top veteran teams, including Mektic and Pavic, before lifting the trophy with a victory against Ebden and Purcell.

The duo played seven tournaments together this year, tallying an 18-5 record. The Australians also lifted the trophy in Atlanta and made the semi-finals in Miami and Tokyo.

Three places remain at the season finale, with fifth-placed Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos currently next in line to qualify.

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