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Team Spain Hits Rottnest Island For Quokka Selfies & Barbeque

  • Posted: Jan 01, 2020

Team Spain Hits Rottnest Island For Quokka Selfies & Barbeque

World No. 1 Nadal makes friends with friendly Western Australia wildlife

World No. 1 Rafael Nadal and Team Spain took a trip on Wednesday to Rottnest Island, 18 kilometres west of mainland Australia, ahead of the start of the inaugural ATP Cup that begins on 3 January.

Roberto Bautista Agut, Pablo Carreno Busta, Feliciano Lopez and captain Francisco Roig joined Nadal on a helicopter trip to the popular holiday island, which is full of sandy beaches and unique wildlife.

Team Spain swam in the sea, posed with the island’s wildlife, including taking selfies with Quokkas, and rode e-bikes to Little Parakeet Bay for a beach barbeque with local seafood.

“Rottnest is really amazing,” said Nadal. “For us, it was a little bit of an early wake-up call with jetlag still affecting us, but the beaches and wildlife are something we will remember for a long time. The Quokkas are super-friendly, and they weren’t afraid to be close. We had some fun with them.

“It’s great to be in Perth and I’m excited to play at the ATP Cup. The people are very supportive to tennis, all around the country, and it’s exciting to share this competition with great team mates. We want to do well.”

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Paul Papalia, Tourism WA Minister, officially welcomed Team Spain on Rottnest Island, saying: “It’s really exciting to have the ATP Cup in Perth and Western Australia. We have the best players in the world here, so people can get up close to watch them in the next few days. Importantly, we’re pleased to have Team Spain here promoting Western Australia, and one of the key visits is to come to Rottnest and get selfies with Quokkas.”

Nadal, Bautista Agut en route to Rottnest Island

“We are very happy to be here in Perth,” said Lopez. “Tennis is an individual sport, but we’ll be sharing everything that’s going to happen in the week. We’ll be ready to play our first matches on Sunday.”

Team Spain is competing in Group B at the RAC Arena in Perth alongside Japan, Georgia and Uruguay. For latest tournament information, live scores, group standings and more, visit

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Team Great Britain's Thrilling 'Change-Up' On Sydney Harbour

  • Posted: Jan 01, 2020

Team Great Britain’s Thrilling ‘Change-Up’ On Sydney Harbour

Brits begin their campaign Friday against Bulgaria

Team Great Britain spends plenty of time together throughout the year, from going to dinners to watching football matches. But on Wednesday afternoon, they enjoyed a special group experience, going for an hour-long boat ride on Sydney Harbour before getting down to business at the inaugural ATP Cup.

Captain Tim Henman, Daniel Evans, Cameron Norrie, James Ward, Joe Salisbury and Jamie Murray all took their phones out as soon as they arrived at the harbour, taking in the great views before bonding on the boat.

“It’s such a great city and you know you’ve got a lot of iconic features with the Harbour Bridge and the Opera House,” Henman said. “It really is a beautiful city and it’s great to be back.”

Team Great Britain

The group posed for plenty of pictures as the boat passed under the Sydney Harbour Bridge, with some members of the team marvelling at people who were climbing the iconic landmark. They stepped around to the front of the boat to lounge and check out the rest of the Sydney skyline, including Sydney Opera House.

“It’s a great change-up. It’s nice to be here,” Ward said. “I love coming to Australia every year and obviously a new event and representing your country is always a special thing and hopefully we’ll have a lot of fun this week.”

Team Great Britain will begin its ATP Cup efforts on Friday evening at 530pm local time against Team Bulgaria. The other countries competing in Group C are Belgium and Moldova, with the winner automatically advancing to the Final Eight, also taking place in Sydney.

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ATP Cup: 5 Countries To Watch In Doubles

  • Posted: Jan 01, 2020

ATP Cup: 5 Countries To Watch In Doubles

Action kicks off on Friday

A doubles match will wrap up each tie at the ATP Cup and could play a crucial role in determining which country leaves with the trophy, making it imperative that the world’s best doubles players are in top form from the first ball. looks at five countries that could be dominant in doubles during the 10-day event. Team captains decide which players will pair up and the official doubles lineups for each tie are still to be determined.

Germany (Kevin Krawietz & Andreas Mies)
Krawietz/Mies produced the biggest doubles surprise of 2019 by storming through the Roland Garros draw as an unseeded duo for their first Grand Slam title (d. Chardy/Martin). The German pair also lifted tour-level crowns in Long Island (d. Gonzalez/Qureshi) and Antwerp (d. Ram/Salisbury), reached the semi-finals at the US Open and qualified for their maiden appearance at the season-ending Nitto ATP Finals in London.

France (Nicolas Mahut & Edouard Roger-Vasselin)
Mahut and Roger-Vasselin enjoyed success together and with other partners this past season. They prevailed in Tokyo (d. Mektic/Skugor) to earn their seventh ATP Tour team doubles title.

Roger-Vasselin also won in Montpellier (w/Dodig), Lyon (w/Dodig) and Stockholm (w/Kontinen). Meanwhile, Mahut teamed with fellow Frenchman Pierre-Hugues Herbert to complete their Career Grand Slam at the Australian Open (d. Kontinen/Peers). They ended the year with titles at the ATP Masters 1000 event in Paris (d. Khachanov/Rublev) and the season finale in London (d. Klaasen/Venus).

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Croatia (Ivan Dodig & Nikola Mektic)
After prevailing with Roger-Vasselin in Montpellier and Lyon, Dodig enjoyed a remarkable second half of 2019 with Slovakian Filip Polasek. One month after reaching the Wimbledon semi-finals, they won their first Masters 1000 team title in Cincinnati (d. Cabal/Farah). The pair followed up with a trophy in Beijing (d. Kubot/Melo) and eventually qualified for the season finale in London.

Mektic proved his versatility by enjoying success with multiple partners. He won his first two Masters 1000 crowns in Indian Wells (w/Zeballos) and Monte-Carlo (w/Skugor), in addition to taking the title in Sofia (w/Melzer).

Great Britain (Jamie Murray & Joe Salisbury)
Salisbury looks to build on his breakout season with American Rajeev Ram. They earned titles this past year in Dubai (d. McLachlan/Struff) and Vienna (d. Kubot/Melo) to help clinch their spot in the season-ending championships, marking Salisbury’s maiden appearance at The O2 in London.

Murray, a two-time men’s doubles Grand Slam champion and former No. 1 player in the ATP Doubles Rankings, is still one of the most dangerous competitors on Tour. His consistent 2019 season included prevailing in Sydney and finishing runner-up in Barcelona (both w/Soares), in addition to semi-final showings at the US Open (w/N. Skupski) and Masters 1000 events in Monte-Carlo, Cincinnati and Shanghai.

United States (Rajeev Ram & Austin Krajicek)
Ram’s stellar year with Salisbury brought the 35-year-old into his third appearance at the Nitto ATP Finals. Krajicek also produced another solid season in 2019. Shortly after reaching the Acapulco final with Kiwi Artem Sitak (l. to Zverev/Zverev), he enjoyed success with Brit Dominic Inglot. The pair triumphed in ’s-Hertogenbosch (d. Daniell/Koolhof) and Atlanta (d. Bryan/Bryan), and also advanced to the final in Los Cabos (l. to Arneodo/Nys).

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Happy New Year! Thiem, Medvedev & Wawrinka Ring In 2020

  • Posted: Jan 01, 2020

Happy New Year! Thiem, Medvedev & Wawrinka Ring In 2020

Top stars celebrate worldwide

The biggest names on the ATP Tour are gearing up to begin the 2020 season, but took time to enjoy New Year’s Eve festivities from across the globe. Check out the celebrations and well-wishes on social media from your favourite players.

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Dominic Thiem is kicking off 2020 by leading Team Austria at the ATP Cup. They’ll aim to get past Argentina, Poland and Croatia in Group E.

Daniil Medvedev brought 2019 to a close in Perth with the rest of Team Russia. They’ll begin their quest for the ATP Cup trophy against Italy, United States and Norway in Group D.

Stan Wawrinka will start his year as the top seed at the Qatar ExxonMobll Open in Doha.

Kei Nishikori made time to greet his fans as he eyes a return to action at the Australian Open.

Borna Coric is enjoying his time in Sydney with Team Croatia. He’ll begin his ATP Cup campaign on Saturday against Austria.

Jamie Murray celebrated by watching the fireworks in Sydney. He’ll team up with Joe Salisbury as Great Britain takes on Belgium, Bulgaria and Moldova in Group C at the ATP Cup.

Fernando Verdasco enjoyed another successful year on the court, but his most memorable moment came off the court with the birth of his first child. The Spaniard begins the new season in Doha.

Team Serbia captain Nenad Zimonjic had a great view to watch the fireworks in Brisbane. Serbia battles South Africa, France and Chile in Group A at the ATP Cup.

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Tsitsipas, Greece Ready To Feel The Love From Greek Fans In Brisbane

  • Posted: Dec 31, 2019

Tsitsipas, Greece Ready To Feel The Love From Greek Fans In Brisbane

Greece kicks off the ATP Cup on Friday in Brisbane against Canada

Team Greece, led by World No. 6 Stefanos Tsitsipas, celebrated New Year’s Eve on Tuesday with its biggest and most loyal Brisbane fans ahead of the ATP Cup.

Greece, which kicks off the inaugural 24-team competition at 10 a.m. on Friday against Canada, visited Nostimo, a Greek restaurant and bar at The Greek Club, which is the centre of Greek life in Brisbane. The club includes the city’s Greek community centre and is next door to the Greek Orthodox Church of St. George.

Tsitsipas, along with teammates Michail Pervolarakis, Markos Kalovelonis, brother Petros Tsitsipas, Alexandros Skorilas and captain/father Apostolos Tsitsipas, mingled with future ATP Cup attendees, sipped a self-inspired martini and looked ahead to 2020. Greece is in Group F with Canada, Germany and Australia.

“We have started very well. We have been putting ourselves to work on the court with the rest of the team. Our chemistry seems to work really well,” Stefanos Tsitsipas said. “I am really proud to represent Greece in this competition for the very first time. We just met the locals from Greece that live here in Brisbane. For us, it is something of huge importance to have people that we really feel connected with and they are going to come and support us. I think that is what is going to make this event so special.”

Greeks are passionate sporting fans and have large communities throughout Australia, as Tsitsipas felt last year during his maiden Grand Slam semi-final run at the Australian Open in Melbourne. It’s an advantage the team hopes to have at full effect in Brisbane.

With Greeks, [passion and energy] is in the culture. We feel very connected to one another. It is almost like a family. They put a lot of energy in when they are out on the court chanting and giving their best for us. It just feels good to be Greek. There are so many benefits that I can take from that,” Tsitsipas said.

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Kalovelonis added: “The fans are passionate. I hope they will support. I think they will support, because they are always coming to Australia to support the Greek players.”

The team certainly felt plenty of love at Nostimo. Kostas Manekas, the restaurant manager, created a martini to honour Tsitsipas’ 2019 season, which saw him win three titles, including the Nitto ATP Finals at The O2 in London, and finish at a year-end ATP Ranking of No. 6.

We wanted to celebrate with you,” Manekas said. “We came up with a recipe that we hope represents you as an individual.”

The drink features ouzo, a popular liquor in Greece; an olive branch, to represent victory; vodka, because of Tsitsipas’ mother’s Russian heritage; and limoncello, which gives the drink a yellow tint.

Well thought, well thought,” Tsitsipas said when he learned of the vodka inclusion.

As Manekas’ creativity shows, the Greek community stands ready to do everything they can to support their country in Brisbane.

Opportunities like this don’t necessarily come around all that often, and the opportunity here with the ATP Cup is something that the whole of the youth of Greek Australians here in Brisbane are going to absolutely love. We’ll be coming in hordes,” said Laki Keramidas, vice president of the Greek Orthodox Youth Association in Brisbane. “You’ll be able to hear us in the crowd, that’s for sure.”

Greece qualified for the ATP Cup because of Tsitsipas’ ranking, and he, along with his father, knows that Greece’s fate in Brisbane will be significantly aided if the 21-year-old can get off to a good start in their matches.

But that’s not to say everything is riding on Tsitsipas. With some of the most passionate fans in the world and the benefit of youth on their team – their oldest player is 25 – Greece is ready to show the world how they can play.

“Stef is going to play an important role to raise the level. It is the team spirit that counts at the end, and I think obviously that is an important thing,” Apostolos Tsitsipas said. “[The Greek fans] are going to be our extra support all these days… I think it is going to be important to be next to their players.”

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Sharapova to play in Brisbane after injury-hit 2019

  • Posted: Dec 31, 2019

Russia’s Maria Sharapova will compete at the Brisbane International in January after receiving a wildcard.

The 32-year-old former world number one played just 15 matches in 2019 because of a long-term shoulder injury.

Five-time Grand Slam champion Sharapova last played a competitive match in the first round of the US Open in August.

“Brisbane, I’ve missed you and I’m so excited to be starting off my year 2020 at your tournament, in your city,” Sharapova said in a social media video.

“I’ve missed the fans, I’ve missed the event so much, and I am so looking forward to seeing everyone.”

Also set to compete at the event, which runs from 6 to 12 January, is defending champion Karolina Pliskova, world number one Ashleigh Barty, Naomi Osaka and Venus Williams.

The tournament is seen as a warm-up for the first Grand Slam of the year, the Australian Open in Melbourne, which starts on 20 January.

With her ranking of 133 in the world, Sharapova will need a wildcard to gain direct entry to the main draw of the Australian Open – a tournament she won in 2008.

She failed a drugs test at the 2016 Australian Open, leading to a 15-month ban from tennis.

  • Wimbledon 2019: Former champion Maria Sharapova retires at 0-5 down in final set

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Team Croatia Takes In Tamarama Waves, Prepare To Storm Into ATP Cup

  • Posted: Dec 31, 2019

Team Croatia Takes In Tamarama Waves, Prepare To Storm Into ATP Cup

Croatia to meet Austria on Saturday

Marin Cilic took his first step down the stairs onto Tamarama Beach on Tuesday in Sydney. The former World No. 3 is working hard in preparation for the inaugural ATP Cup, and he was excited to join his countrymen for a quick outing at the beach before play begins on 3 January.

“Tough day at the office,” Cilic said, cracking a smile as he looked out at the magnificent sea setting from above.

Cilic, Borna Coric, Ivan Dodig, Nikola Mektic and Viktor Galovic visited with the Tamarama Surf Lifesaving Club to learn what it takes to look after the public swimming in the crystal blue water off the beach.

“I’m going to be the life saver. I’m going to save you,” Coric said.

“I’d like to be saved,” Mektic said, eliciting plenty of laughter from Team Croatia.

Team Croatia visits Tamarama Beach in Sydney ahead of the <a href=''>ATP Cup</a>.

That is what is making the ATP Cup special — players who typically play for themselves becoming one, enjoying the unity that this 24-team event provides.

As the Croats — who launch their campaign on Saturday evening against Team Austria — stepped out onto a set of boulders high above the scene to take some photos, passersby quickly gathered, with some Croatian tennis fans stopping to ask the stars for pictures.

“Obviously we are really happy to be here,” said Team Croatia captain Luka Kutanjac. “It’s a great new event that the ATP is really trying to promote and to keep it going. It’s always fun to have teammates together.”

The players then descended to the sand, with some choosing to go for a swim in the Sydney heat. It was a perfect time to cool off, with the competition about to start heating up.

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Dimitrov & Team Bulgaria: 'We're Going To Try To Take It All In'

  • Posted: Dec 31, 2019

Dimitrov & Team Bulgaria: ‘We’re Going To Try To Take It All In’

Bulgaria will compete in Group C in Sydney

Team Bulgaria’s No. 1 player and captain Grigor Dimitrov, who made the Sydney final in 2016, visited Sydney Harbour Bridge on Monday evening, posting pictures on social media. “I love that city,” he wrote in an Instagram story post.

The 28-year-old was still blown away by the setting when he arrived at the North Sydney Pool — which is right under the bridge — on Tuesday afternoon with the rest of his team: Dimitar Kuzmanov, Alexandar Lazarov, Alexander Donski and Adrian Andreev.

“We’re just having a day off today and we’re going to try to take it all in, enjoy it and welcome 2020,” Dimitrov said.

<a href=''>Grigor Dimitrov</a> dives into North Sydney Pool.

The Bulgarians had plenty of fun, practising various jumps into the pool and going for a swim. The ATP Cup is a unique opportunity for some of the team’s players who have not previously been to Sydney to not only compete in an inaugural 24-team event with the best players in the world, but to enjoy a memorable experience, too.

“I cannot hide that I’m super-excited. It’s the very first time here for me in Sydney and Australia as well,” Kuzmanov said. “It’s not a bad start of the year at all. Perfect weather. New continent, new country, great mood and also perfect organisation and great team spirit.”

Andreev is the youngest player on Team Bulgaria, and he too has never been to Sydney, only competing in the Australian Open juniors. And not only is he excited for the ATP Cup, but also to spend quality time with the best players from his country and continue building their relationships.

“It’s awesome to be here. It’s going to be a really good challenge and it’s going to be great to see the competition and just enjoy playing or watching the matches and just support my country,” Andreev said. “It will be really awesome.”

Fireworks will line the skies over Sydney as the clock strikes midnight marking 1 January, but Team Bulgaria will look to create more fireworks as the competition begins, attempting to advance through Group C to reach the Final Eight.

Team Bulgaria’s first match will be on Friday against Team Great Britain at 5:30pm local time.

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Auger-Aliassime, Monfils Name 2020 New Year's Resolutions

  • Posted: Dec 31, 2019

Auger-Aliassime, Monfils Name 2020 New Year’s Resolutions

Shapovalov, Tsitsipas also talk about their 2020 goals at the ATP Cup

ATP Tour players didn’t wait until 2020 to craft their New Year’s resolutions. On the last day of 2019, members of Team Canada, Team France, Team Greece and Team Serbia had already planned out their goals for 2020.

Canada’s top two singles players in Brisbane, Denis Shapovalov and Felix Auger-Aliassime, both have high hopes for 2020.

“My goal for 2020 is just to keep improving and enjoying myself and enjoying my lifestyle and my tennis. I just want to wish all the fans, everybody around the world a happy New Year,” Shapovalov said.

Auger-Aliassime, similarly, kept things simple when discussing his 2020 resolutions. “For my part, maybe I don’t have a one-year resolution but I want to win matches, keep having fun and enjoy myself,” Auger-Aliassime said.

Canada will kick off the 2020 ATP Tour season at 10 a.m. Friday in Brisbane against Team Greece, which is led by Stefanos Tsitsipas.

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The reigning Nitto ATP Finals champion wants to add more humour into his life this next decade. “My New Year’s resolution is to text more and be more funny,” Tsitsipas said.

France’s Gael Monfils and Benoit Paire of Team France have more personal resolutions in mind, even if they might still make you laugh.

“My resolution for me this year is quite easy, shave myself. A good trim for me actually. That was personal. And definitely be on time, that’s for my coach,” Monfils said.

Paire responded, “That’s important, because when we play FIFA you are often late because you know you are going to lose. So be on time next time.

“For me, just enjoy life. Enjoy to be on court. Enjoy with the fans. I think it’s important. That’s my resolution for next year.”

Enjoy life. It’s what Viktor Troicki of Serbia, and likely every ATP Cup player, will want to do in 2020 as well.

“My New Year’s resolution is to stay healthy this year, to hopefully come back in Top 100,” Troicki said. “And just enjoy tennis for a couple more years I hope.”

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Meet The 2020 ATP Cup Countries

  • Posted: Dec 31, 2019

Meet The 2020 ATP Cup Countries

Teams set to compete in Brisbane, Perth and Sydney

The world’s best players are all gearing up to kick off the new year at the inaugural ATP Cup, held throughout Australia from 3-12 January. Learn more about the 24 competing countries and the players looking to lead their team to victory.

2020 ATP Cup Teams
Great Britain
South Africa
United States

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