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Infosys ATP Beyond The Numbers: Djokovic On A Roll

  • Posted: Apr 05, 2016

Infosys ATP Beyond The Numbers: Djokovic On A Roll

Infosys ATP Beyond The Numbers gives 10 insights into Novak Djokovic’s dominance.

Novak Djokovic is on an unprecedented roll. In winning Miami last week, the World No. 1 reached a record 11th consecutive ATP World Tour Masters 1000 final, compiling a scorching 56-2 record along the way.

Next victim – Monte Carlo. Djokovic dropped just one set to win the 2015 Monte Carlo Rolex Masters, defeating eight-time champion Rafael Nadal, 6-3, 6-3, in the semi-finals.

An Infosys ATP Beyond the Numbers analysis of Djokovic’s successful 2015 campaign reveals 10 interesting insights into his game that we can look for again this year.

1. Aces/Double Faults

In 49 service games, Djokovic only hit nine aces, while committing just seven double faults. This is about the only area of his game he was not immediately leaning on his opponent.

2. Serving Scenarios

Djokovic served with new balls five times, and held every time. He won 88 per cent (7/8) of his service games when serving for the set, and won 85 per cent (17/20) holding serve after breaking his opponent’s serve.

3. Better Converting In The Ad Court

When returning, the super Serb played 77 per cent (40/52) of his break point opportunities in the advantage court, where he was almost twice as successful converting break points. He converted 48 per cent (19/40) of his break points in the ad court, and only 25 per cent (3/12) in the deuce court.

4. Holding Serve

Djokovic proved impossible to break when he stretched his lead to two points when serving. He held every time when he led 30/0 (19/19), and also 40/15 (20/20).

5. Score = 30/30

Djokovic put up fairly similar numbers at 30/30 when he was serving and receiving. He won 75 per cent (12/16) of his service games from 30/30, and broke 62 per cent (8/13) when returning at the same score.

6. Solid Second Serves

Overall, on break points, Djokovic made a first serve 68 per cent (13/19) of the time. He saved 70 per cent (9/13) of his break points behind a first serve, and a very high 67 per cent (4/6) after hitting a second serve.

7. Breaking = Better Versus Second Serves

Making a first serve dramatically helped opponents save break points against the world’s premier returner. Djokovic broke 40 per cent (11/28) of the time against a first serve, but a substantially higher 65 per cent (11/17) when he got a look at a second serve.

8. Average Set Time

The average set time in Monte Carlo last year for Djokovic was 43 minutes – just two minutes longer than his 2015 season average on all surfaces.

9. Average Winning Match Time

Even though playing on clay at sea level, the Serb basically raced through his matches in Monte Carlo, winning the five matches in an average of 95 minutes. His 2015 season average was a full 12 minutes longer, at 107 minutes.

10. Second Serve Domination Versus Nadal

Djokovic won a commanding 68 per cent (8/14) of his second-serve points against Nadal, and also won 53 per cent (12/23) of the Spaniard’s second-serve points as well. Djokovic broke Nadal four times, with all four coming behind Nadal’s first serve.

Read more insights at Infosys ATP Beyond The Numbers


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Isner Big WWE Wrrestling Fan Houston 2016

  • Posted: Apr 05, 2016

Isner Big WWE Wrrestling Fan Houston 2016

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Baghdatis Double Bagel Houston 2016

  • Posted: Apr 05, 2016

Baghdatis Double Bagel Houston 2016

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Broady reaches second round in Katowice

  • Posted: Apr 05, 2016

British number three Naomi Broady fought back from a set down to beat Karin Knapp and reach the second round of the Katowice Open in Poland.

The 26-year-old – ranked 78 in the world, six places lower than Italian Knapp – won 6-7 (6-8) 6-4 6-4.

Although the big-serving Broady wasted a set point in the first-set tie-break, she broke early in the second.

Next she faces defending champion Anna Karolina Schmiedlova of Slovakia or France’s Pauline Parmentier.

Never want to miss the latest tennis news? You can now add this sport and all the other sports and teams you follow to your personalised My Sport home.

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Opelka/Paul Advance In Houston; Two Marrakech Battles

  • Posted: Apr 05, 2016

Opelka/Paul Advance In Houston; Two Marrakech Battles

Six match points are saved in Marrakech

Reilly Opelka and Tommy Paul advanced to the second round of the Fayez Sarofim & Co US Men’s Clay Court Championship in Houston on Monday by beating Nicholas Monroe and Neal Skupski 7-6(6), 4-6, 10-4. They will next face fellow Americans, top seeds and five-time champions Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan or Denis Kudla and Donald Young.

Fourth seeds Steve Johnson and Sam Querrey had a quick-fire 6-4, 6-0 win over Carlos Berlocq and Benoit Paire, while Hyeon Chung backed up his singles win, teaming with Julio Peralta to hold off the Argentine pairing of Guido Andreozzi and Nicolas Kicker 3-6, 6-1, 10-8.

At the Grand Prix Hassan II in Marrakech, there were two close battles.

Albert Ramos-Vinolas and Jiri Vesely saved six match points against Wesley Koolhof and Matwe Middelkoop in a 6-7(5), 7-6(3), 16-14 victory over one hour and 55 minutes. Koolhof and Middelkoop could not convert match points at 9/6, 10/9, 12/11 and 14/13 in the Match tie-break.

Elsewhere, Pablo Carreno Busta and Inigo Cervantes topped their fellow Spaniards Nicolas Almagro and Guillermo Garcia-Lopez 6-7(5), 6-3, 10-6.

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Doubles Q1 Review: Mahut, Mirnyi, Murray Take Centre Stage

  • Posted: Apr 05, 2016

Doubles Q1 Review: Mahut, Mirnyi, Murray Take Centre Stage looks back on an exciting first quarter on the doubles circuit

Murray New No. 1
Exactly five months ago, Marcelo Melo assumed the mantle of individual No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Doubles Rankings, ending the three-year reign of Bob and Mike Bryan. It did not take long for the torch to be passed. On 4 April, Jamie Murray wrestled it away from the Brazilian, rising to the top spot and becoming the first British player – male or female – to do so in singles or doubles.

Murray and Bruno Soares are also the No. 1 tandem in the Emirates ATP Doubles Team Rankings, with their sights set on a trip to London for the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in their first season together. The Brit and the Brazilian were ruthless in the month of January, posting a 12-1 record. They experienced their first taste of Grand Slam glory with a title run at the Australian Open (d. Nestor/Stepanek), a week after lifting the trophy in Sydney. Soares would also win the mixed title at Melbourne Park with Elena Vesnina.

Mirnyi Joins ‘700 Wins Club’
At age 38, Max Mirnyi has injected new life into his illustrious career, finding success with new partner Treat Huey. The duo are up to No. 4 in the Emirates ATP Doubles Team Rankings, having outlasted the field in winning the title in Acapulco, followed by a semi-final run last week at the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 event in Miami. Former World No. 1 Mirnyi enjoyed a moment alone in the spotlight as well, becoming just the ninth player to win 700 doubles matches. The Belarusian joins Daniel Nestor, Bob Bryan, Mike Bryan, Todd Woodbridge, Mark Knowles, Sherwood Stewart, Leander Paes and Jonas Bjorkman in the ‘700 Wins Club’.

Mahut/Herbert Enjoy Strong Start
Quick, who were the three teams to complete the Indian Wells-Miami double since 2000? Mark Knowles and Daniel Nestor did it in 2002, the Bryans achieved the feat in 2014 and last week the French team of Nicolas Mahut and Pierre-Hugues Herbert joined the exclusive club. The duo added the pair of Masters 1000 crowns to their US Open title as they continue to hit top form together. Mahut also partnered with Vasek Pospisil in clinching the title at the ATP World Tour 500 event in Rotterdam, while reaching the semi-finals in singles that week.

Moments In The Spotlight
A notable absentee from the list of ATP World Tour doubles titlists in 2016 has been the Bryan brothers, who are mired in their longest title drought to open a season since 2003. While the Bryans search for their first title, others have grabbed the spotlight: Mate Pavic and Michael Venus own the most team titles this year with victories in Auckland, Montpellier and Marseille. Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah dominated the Golden Swing, going back-to-back in Buenos Aires and Rio de Janeiro, while reaching the semi-finals in Acapulco. In Delray Beach, Oliver Marach and Fabrice Martin saved six match points to stun the Bryans 13-11 in a Match Tie-break for their second team title. The feel-good story of the first quarter of 2016 came in Sao Paulo, where Chile’s Julio Peralta won his first ATP World Tour title, teaming with Horacio Zeballos to lift the trophy. At age 34, Peralta has overcome a catalogue of injuries and ailments throughout his 17-year career.

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The 'Last Time' With Tommy Paul…

  • Posted: Apr 05, 2016

The 'Last Time' With Tommy Paul…

The 18 year old shares the last time he strung a tennis racquet

In Houston for the the Fayez Sarofim & Co. U.S. Men’s Clay Court Championship, young American Tommy Paul shares the last time…

I missed a flight?
I don’t think I’ve ever missed a flight. Flights have gotten cancelled and I’ve been stuck in crazy places but I don’t think I’ve ever missed one yet. That’s pretty good luck.

I lost something important?
I’ve definitely lost my phone. Definitely have lost my phone probably a couple times. It’s been a while, probably two years ago… I think I left it at a pool somewhere, I’m not sure… I’ve definitely washed my phones in the washing machine a couple times, too.

I paid money to rent a tennis court or buy tennis balls?
While I was home (New Jersey) during the preseason (December). I went to this club near my house, and I had to rent out the courts.

Being famous helped me?
Nothing. Ha, ha. Nothing at all! I’m looking forward to my first time.

I strung a tennis racquet?
It’s probably been two years. I used to string all my racquets until about two years ago and then I started just getting them strung, I broke way too many strings… I break strings probably every 40 minutes. Three or four a day… I learned how to string through people teaching me and YouTube videos. It’s pretty simple… We had a little stringer machine. I’d get back from practice, string all my racquets. It was terrible. It was the worst… Back then it was two a day, once I started getting to three or four, I was like, no, I’m not doing this anymore.

I cooked for myself and others?
I am not a cook. The only time I can think of is a couple months ago. It was me and Reilly Opelka, and we were like, ‘You know what? We’re going to do this. We’re going to cook ourselves. We’re going to make pasta.’ And we actually did it, and it wasn’t that bad. So it was a success for us… Penne pasta with marinara sauce, I guess… We were in Boca Raton, it was like two months ago… We’re more of restaurant eaters. We like going out to eat a lot.

I met a childhood idol?
Probably five months ago. I went to practice with (Andy) Roddick in Austin, Texas. He was definitely my childhood idol when I was younger. It was great to practise with him for a week… It was awesome. We didn’t play sets. He would come out and hit with us. It was me and Mitchell Krueger. We were out there, and we were practising with him, doing two on ones.

I shared a hotel room with another player?
Three days ago. Ha, ha. No, two days ago with Reilly Opelka. We were sharing… saving money.

I asked someone famous for an autograph or selfie?
With Roger (Federer), a week ago, I asked him to take a picture… I was practising with him in Miami a week ago on the clay.

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Sock Returns To Site Of Emotional Breakthrough

  • Posted: Apr 05, 2016

Sock Returns To Site Of Emotional Breakthrough

The American nabbed his first ATP World Tour title in Houston under trying circumstances last year

Houston will always be a special place for Jack Sock, not merely for being the site of his first ATP World Tour title. Hoisting that Fayez Sarofim & Co. U.S. Men’s Clay Court Championship in 2015 capped a successful return from pelvis surgery in only his third event of the season.

But it marked a tribute to a much deeper struggle. His brother, Eric, had just survived a serious bout of pneumonia and Lemierre’s syndrome, sparked by a bacterial sore throat infection. It left him in intensive care for three weeks in January last year and on a ventilator for another week.

“There was definitely a lot going on,” Sock said on Monday. “That was the start of my year – Indian Wells, Miami and then here obviously was to kind of cap off that first stretch of tournaments.

“For me, post-surgery and my brother, post-illness, finally feeling better, a big goal of mine last year was to win a title and then I did it at one of my favourite tournaments in this city. To do it that early gave me a lot of confidence for the rest of the year.

“I know every player loves it here. It’s why you feel it every year. Houston will always be a special place for me.”

The 22-year-old American has a first-round bye before beginning his title defence against countryman and NextGen star Frances Tiafoe or Australian qualifier Matthew Barton. The No. 2 American behind John Isner, Sock arrives with Round of 32 losses in Indian Wells and Miami.

“Got that first match win in both and then ran into (Dominic) Thiem (in Indian Wells), who’s pretty red-hot this year – I think he’s got the most wins out of anyone,” Sock said. “We played two tight sets and then he kind of ran away with it in the third. He played better that day in the third set.

“(In Miami), Milos (Raonic) again, I feel like I’ve seen that match over and over. I think it’s like the seventh or eighth time I’ve played him and it’s been close.”

With his good friend, World No. 15 Isner, still 10 spots clear of him in the Emirates ATP Rankings as the No.1 American, Sock realises he still has a way to go to make up ground on his 30-year-old countryman.

“The results go up and down. Unless you’re Novak (Djokovic) you’re losing most weeks,” Sock said of his bid to improve. “I think John’s got hopefully a few more years in him. He had a good year last year. He’s tough to play on any surface.

“Obviously, a goal of mine is to be the top-ranked American so I’m going to have to play some great tennis and keep having those breakout results to get there.”


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Sidorenko Reflects On Dream Week In St. Brieuc

  • Posted: Apr 05, 2016

Sidorenko Reflects On Dream Week In St. Brieuc

The 28-year-old has cut his ranking in half since the start of the year

After a decade on tour, Alexandre Sidorenko is producing the best results of his career at age 28.

With an Emirates ATP Ranking of No. 379, Sidorenko needed a wild card to appear in the main draw of last week’s $50,000 event in St. Brieuc, France. But the Frenchman made the most of his opportunity, producing inspired tennis to reach his first ATP Challenger Tour final in eight years. With the home crowd fully behind him in the championship against No. 6 seed Igor Sijsling, Sidorenko nailed a backhand passing shot on his first match point to take the epic match and win his first ATP Challenger Tour singles title, 2-6, 6-3, 7-6 (3).

“It means a lot to me,” said Sidorenko. “After everything that I’ve been through, to see that I’m getting my form back and now winning my first Challenger is fantastic. It helps a lot for the future just to keep going and keep believing in myself.”

The win also signifies a remarkable turnaround in the direction of Sidorenko’s career. As recently as a few months ago, the Frenchman was considering abandoning singles for a career as a doubles specialist.

“I was improving much faster in doubles and starting to play more Challengers at that level,” he explained. “But I think playing doubles also improved my singles just by playing at the bigger tournaments and being in that atmosphere more often. Now my singles is starting to improve at the same speed as my doubles.”

With a current Emirates ATP Ranking of No. 225, Sidorenko has already cut his ranking in half since the start of the year. He attributes the hard work he put in during the off-season with being able to sustain a rigorous schedule that has seen him play in nine tournaments since the start of the year, including this week at the $50,000 event in Napoli, Italy.

”I had a very good off-season and worked a lot, which has helped me to keep getting better each day,” said Sidorenko. “I was a little bit lucky to win some of the matches, but I also wouldn’t be able to physically handle winning this many matches and playing so much if I didn’t have a good pre-season. It’s shown me that I can compete with the guys at this level.”

Sidorenko’s confident form has also led to some inspired shotmaking. During his quarter-final win in St. Brieuc over Tobias Kamke, the Frenchman hit a no-look, over-the-shoulder passing shot winner that brought the crowd to their feet.

WATCH: Sidorenko Fires No-Look Hot Shot

“We spoke after the match and he said it was an unbelievable shot, but then the video came out the next day and [Kamke] said even he didn’t realise it was a no-look shot,” said Sidorenko. “Every player spoke to me about it afterwards. I don’t even know how I made it. It was a lot of luck, but I was also very happy about it!”

With a ranking that will now enable him to gain direct entry into most ATP Challenger Tour events, Sidorenko believes he is well on his way to achieving his goals for the 2016 season.

“My first goal was to get into qualifying for Roland Garros, so I should be in there now,” said Sidorenko. “I also want to finish the year close to my best ranking (No. 168, which he achieved in June 2010). I’m in good shape for that and have had a good run lately, so I just want to keep this form going now.”

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NextGen Star Chung Prevails In Houston Opener

  • Posted: Apr 05, 2016

NextGen Star Chung Prevails In Houston Opener

Korean teen fends of Victor Estrella Burgos in three sets.

NextGen star Hyeon Chung kicked off the Fayez Sarofim & Co. U.S. Men’s Clay Court Championship main draw with a win over Victor Estrella Burgos on Monday. The 19 year old is making his second tournament appearance (reached the second round last year, l. to Verdasco).

Chung, who was last year’s ATP World Tour Most Improved Player of the Year, fired seven aces as he beat the 35-year-old Dominican 6-4, 6-7(5), 6-0 to reach the second round, where he awaits the winner of eighth seed Paolo Lorenzi and wild card Tommy Paul.

In doubles, wild card team Reilly Opelka and Tommy Paul beat Nicholas Monroe and Neal Skupski 7-6(6), 4-6, 10-4. 

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