Tag Archives: Janko Tipsarevic

2013 US Open Quallies, Final Round

25 Aug


Here are more pictures from the last round of US Open Quallies. There is a mix of today’s stars practicing as well as the players from the qualification tournament. Let’s test out the tennis crack whore in you as I will not label any of the pictures. How many can you name? You can look at the “tags” if you want some help.

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I will not make you guess who is in the following two pictures because I think she deserves special attention. This was the first time I had the opportunity to watch a 20 year old Serbian woman named Aleksandra Krunic play, and I am expecting big things from her. Ladies and gentleman, please meet Aleksandra Krunic.

Aleksandra Krunic US Open 2013

Aleksandra Krunic serving. See the ball?

Aleksandra Krunic of Serbia

Fluid service motion by Aleksandra Krunic

 

Floodgates Busted Wide Open For Janko Tipsarevic

23 Oct

Janko Tipsrevic Lifts Kremlin Cup as Victor Troicki watchesAfter 10 seasons on tour including 4 finals appearances, Janko Tipsarevic had not won an ATP title until a few weeks ago when he posted a solid 64 75 victory over Marcos Baghdatis in Kuala Lumpur. The wait for his 2nd ATP title would be far shorter with his win today over countryman and defending champion Viktor Troicki. In fact, Janko made it look easy with a routine 64 62 win to wrest the Kremlin Cup away from Viktor.

This was the first All-Serbian final ever and who would have thought that this piece of history would not involve Novak Djokovic. While Novak has been front and center for all tennis news involving Serbia (and the world), Janko and Viktor have both firmly entrenched themselves in the Top 20. They are also knocking on the door of the Top 10 as Tipsarevic will move up to #13 in the rankings tomorrow. He does crack the Top 10 in the Champions Race with a chance Janko Winsof making the Barclays World Tour Finals in London although he still trails the Top 8 by more than 500 points.

Considering he has never finished the season higher than #38, a Top 10 finish or anywhere near it will be a major accomplishment for Janko. His past 12 months have included many firsts starting last year with his nation’s first Davis Cup, his first Master Series semi at the Rogers Cup to crack the Top 20 for the first time, his first Slam quarter at the US Open, and that elusive first title in Kuala Lumpur. With so many firsts in 2011, one could say winning his second title in Moscow was his first great ‘second’ of 2011. It was also his first underwear endorsement deal with Extreme Intimo, and perhaps that was just the good luck charm he needed as the photos were released only days before he lifted that first trophy in Kuala Lumpur.

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Tipsarevic and Troicki may have made history with the first All-Serbian final played today, King Novak still found a way to steal the show as his epic mini-tennis battle against Dusan Vemic on YouTube proved to be the more entertaining All-Serb battle today.

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While this was uploaded today, those shenanigans actually took place the day before Nole’s first US Open title. I guess that turned out to be a good way to stay loose before a Grand Slam final.

dominika cibulkova first titleIn other Kremlin Cup news today, Dominika Cibulkova scored her first title with a 36 76(1) 75 victory over Kaia Kanepi. While the 22 year-old Slovak has been ranked as high as #12 in the world with a Grand Slam semi under her belt, that first title had eluded her until today. Last week she reached her third career final in a loss to Petra Kvitova in Linz, but the fourth time proved to be lucky today for Dominika especially considering the gift Kaia gave her late in the second set. With Cibulkova serving break point down at 5-All, Kanepi missed an open-court overhead that sailed about a centimeter long. While the two both looked tight at the end of the third with 5 consecutive breaks of serve, Cibulkova finally held her serve (and her nerve) to close it out.

dominika cibulkova in moscow red squareLet’s see if this victory busts open the floodgates for the little 5-foot-3 dynamo from Bratislava like it has for Janko. Only a handful of players can end their season with a victory, and Dominika sure finished hers off in style just like she did when she visited the Red Square earlier this week.

Enjoy the off-season, Dominika!

Weekly Winners: David, Delpo, Dulko, Djokey and um D-Vera?

28 Feb

What a nice mix of tourney winners this week, dontcha think?  I try not to overstate things when it comes to tennis, but these weekly winners made some important statements this week.  And in many cases their opponents in the final missed out on their statement-making opportunities.

David Ferrer – Can you think of a more underrated player in recent years other than David Ferrer? Ferru became a solid Top 5 player in 2007, but no one really ever paid that much attention to him. Well, guess what? Very quietly he has snuck up to be in striking distance of getting back in that Elite 5. The feisty Spaniard who always seems to believe in himself on the court has expressed lots of doubt and/or modesty in his ability in the past, but I like the sound of his humble optimism after defending the Acapulco crown (and sombrero) by a score of 76(4) 67(2) 62. “I didn’t think I could win here twice in a row and I realize I am having the best season start of my career this year. I hope I can continue like that this season.” Nicolas Almagro is also enjoying a stellar start to 2011 with an 18-3 record including two titles and a third consecutive final, yet today Nico remained winless in his six attempts against his higher ranked countryman. Almagro also holds a horrible 10-29 record against Top 10 players, with no Top 10 wins at the majors. For someone so close to cracking the Top 10 again, I expect a whole lot more from Nicolas Almagro. He moves up to #12 this week and was as high as #11 in 2008, but I can’t help but think that he should take some notes from his friend Ferru.

Juan Martin Del Potro – El Torre de Tandil won his first title since his comeback from injury and the 2009 US Open. Juan Martin picked up the trophy in style as he did not drop a set in Delray Beach. This is Del Potro’s 8th title, with five of them coming on American hard courts. Delpo beat Janko 6-4 6-4 despite the Serb racing out to a 4-1 lead. This was Janko’s third ATP final, but he will have to wait some more before snagging that elusive first title. Juan Martin will be back in the Top 100 thanks to this win, and I am curious to see how he will compete against the big boys at Indian Wells and Miami.

Gisela Dulko – Casi un catástrofe! Dulko raced to a 63 51 lead against Arantxa Parra Santonja, who then won the next five games in a row to go up 6-5, 40-0 for triple set point. Gisela steadied herself to win five points in a row to force a tie-break in the second and eventually won the match 63 76(5). The usually steady Argentine explained, “Finals are always special and we were both nervous in the first set, but after that I was playing much better. All of a sudden I started to get a bit nervous again and Arantxa started playing so well. I was three set points down. At the end I ended up winning, so I’m really happy.” Acapulco marks Dulko’s fourth title and first since 2008, while this was 28 year-old Parra Santonja’s first final ever.

Novak Djokovic – Undefeated in 2011. That’s 12 wins in a row for Novak, and 17 overall if you include Hopman and Davis Cup. I think it’s worth pointing out that Nole did not face any easy draws as all but 3 of these 17 matches were against Top 50 players. The exceptions were Ruben Bemelmans and Lleyton Hewitt both at Hopman Cup as well as soon-to-be Top 50 Ivan Dodig, the only player Nole lost a set to during his Melbourne run. And a quick congrats to 23 year-old Belgian lefty Ruben Bemelmans who won the Wolfsburg challenger and jumped to a career-high #144. Just like the Aussie semis, Roger lost to Novak in straight sets with a score of 63 63 today. Roger remains ahead 13-8 in their head-to-head, but Novak has looked like the more confident player in these past two matches. It seems like many continue to question if Roger’s descent from greatness has already begun, but I sure wouldn’t write him off just yet.

Vera Zvonareva – I give a lot of credit to Vera for capturing this title in Doha over Caroline Wozniacki by a score of 64 64. While many have questioned the legitimacy of Caro’s year-end #1 ranking for 2010, I couldn’t help but take greater issue with Vera’s year-end #2 ranking. Wozniacki may not have won a Grand Slam, but she did win 6 titles and the most on tour. And Vera in 2010? She only won one title over a very weak field in Pattaya City where #48 Yaroslava Shvedova was the highest ranked player she had to face. Vera remains at #3 in the rankings this week, but I am beginning to become more of a Vera-believer. I might even have to consider her one of the favorites for Roland Garros despite the fact that it has been her least successful Slam so far. And wow, how wide open will that Slam be this year, huh?

Congrats to all of the weekly winners!

Next week is Davis Cup for the ATP, and I will offer a bold prediction for the WTA next week…

Dinara Safina wins Kuala Lumpur!

2010 Davis Cup Final Begins

3 Dec

The 2010 Davis Cup Finals begin today, and here are your matches:

Friday

Janko Tipsarevic vs. Gael Monfils

Novak Djokovic vs. Gilles Simon

Saturday

Victor Troicki/Nenad Zimonjic

vs. Arnaud Clement/Michael Llodra

Sunday

Novak Djokovic vs. Gael Monfils

Janko Tipsarevic vs. Gilles Simon

Both Guy Forget and Bogdan Obradovic made bold but probably wise selections in selecting their #2 players.  Michael Llodra and Richard Gasquet are currently ranked higher than Gilles Simon, but he does seem more reliable in a clutch match than those two.  Similarly, Janko Tipsarevic is more of a “big-match” player than his higher ranked compatriot Victor Troicki. 

However, Janko showed major nerves starting the first match with two consecutive double-faults and lost the first set rather quickly.  Plenty of tennis still to be played, so stay tuned…

Not So Fast, The ATP Season Ain’t Quite Over Just Yet…..

30 Nov

Roger and Rafa provided a stellar finale to the 2010 season at the ATP World Tour finals, but the French and Serbian teams are just getting warmed up.  This Friday, the Belgrade Arena will showcase this year’s Davis Cup final on an indoor hard court.  Serbia has never been to the Davis Cup final before, while France is vying for their 10th title with their last coming in 2001 over Australia in Melbourne.

Novak Djokovic and Nenad Zimonjic have arrived in Belgrade from the World Tour finals in London, and quite frankly they looked quite tired at their Davis Cup press conference.  Who can blame them after such a long season, but they have a couple of days to get their pep back as well as get pumped up by the sure to be raucous crowd.  Victor Troicki and Janko Tipsarevic round out the Davis Cup team, although it has not been determined yet what the match lineup will be.

The Frenchies on the other hand look lively and jovial with the official four-man squad consisting of Gael Monfils, Gilles Simon, Arnaud Clement, and Michael Llodra with Richard Gasquet as an un-official fifth.  Captain Guy Forget explained, “I’ve included Richard Gasquet in my squad of four players as required by the ITF because for an event of this importance it strikes me as essential to prepare five players.  They are all setting out on an equal footing.”  Despite the uncertainty of which players will get the nod from Coach Forget, the French players sure look to be getting on just fine.