A tennis blog from a tennis fan.

Azarenka Boyfriend is Sergei Bubka

According to Google Trends, “azarenka boyfriend” is the fifth most used search term for Internet users googling information about Victoria Azarenka, the WTA tour’s latest tennis queen. Azarenka supplanted Caroline Wozniacki as the #1 woman tennis player and her Internet popularity has soared. As with her increased celebrity, so has the interest in her personal life increased as well. Victoria Azarenka’s boyfriend is Sergei Bubka, the son of Ukraine’s pole vault champion and Olympic gold medalist Serhiy Nazarovych Bubka. The younger Bubka is also a tennis player although not quite as successful as Azarenka. The ATP tour website lists Azarenka’s boyfriend as #157 in the world.

Victoria Azarenka’s Boyfriend – Sergei Bubka Tennis Profile

Sergei Bubka was born in Donestk, Ukraine and is now 25 years old. He currently resides in Monte Carlo, Monaco like Azarenka. He plays tennis right handed and his coach is Olivier Morel. His favorite surface is indoor hard courts and counts the US Open as his favorite tennis tournament. He lists basketball star Michael Jordan and Russian tennis players Andrei Medvedev and Marat Safin as athletes he looked up to while growing up. To date, Bubka has earned a total of $328,916 in prize money earnings.

Bubka first entered the ATP tour ranking system in August 2003 with a ranking of #1133. He was ranked in the top 500 for the first time in May 2006. His career high ranking was achieved in November 2011 at #145. His current achievements in the past 12 months included reaching the second round of the US Open last August and the round of 16 in Dubai last year. He reached the finals of the Astana challenger tennis tournament last July and reached the third round of qualifying at the Australian Open 2012, the first Grand Slam that Azarenka won. Bubka qualified into his first ATP World Tour main draw Monday at the Campbell’s Hall of Fame Tennis Championships in 2010.

For more information about Victoria Azarenka’s boyfriend, visit here.

Dubai Tennis 2012: Federer beats Murray, wins 5th Dubai Title

World #3 Roger Federer won a record 5th Dubai title by beating #4 Andy Murray in straight sets 75 64. The win is Federer’s second title this month and his 72nd ATP tournament title. He earlier claimed the Rotterdam crown for his first title 2 weeks ago. Federer takes home $409,170 in prize money for winning Dubai 2012 but more importantly, he brings a 10-match win streak and into March where two of the biggest tournaments in the ATP calendar will be played in Indian Wells and Miami. In doubles, the #4 seeded pair of Bhupathi and Bopanna beat #3 seed Matkowski and Fyrstenberg to win the Dubai 2012 doubles tournament.

03/02 Update: In an exciting development at the Dubai 2012 tennis tournament, world #4 Andy Murray turned the tables on world #1 Novak Djokovic by upsetting the top seed in straight sets 62 75. Murray now advances to the Dubai 2012 finals where he’ll be going against world #3 and 4-time Dubai champion Roger Federer. Federer needed two tiebreak sets against in-form Juan Martin del Potro 76(5) 76(6) to advance to the finals where he’s going for a record 5th Dubai championship. The Dubai 2012 final will be the 15th meeting between the two players with Murray holding a rare 8-6 advantage over the 16-time grand slam champion. The two haven’t played for more than a year with their last meeting occurring during the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in 2010. Federer beat Murray at a round robin match in straight sets. A win by Murray will push his career prize earnings to more than $20 million while if Federer wins, his record career prize money earnings will near the $70 million milestone. The doubles final will be between the 3rd seeded pair of Matkowski and Fyrstenberg vs the 4th seeded pair of Bhupathi and Bopanna.

Dubai Tennis 2012: Results – FRIDAY, 02 MARCH, 2012

(2) R Federer defeats (8) J Del Potro 76(5) 76(6)
(3) A Murray defeats (1) N Djokovic 62 75

(4) M Bhupathi / R Bopanna defeats J Knowle / A Peya 76(2) 76(7)
(3) M Fyrstenberg / M Matkowski defeats J Erlich / A Ram 64 36 10-4

Dubai Tennis 2012: Schedule – SATURDAY, 03 MARCH, 2012

CENTRE COURT start 5:00 pm
[4] M Bhupathi (IND) / R Bopanna (IND) vs [3] M Fyrstenberg (POL) / M Matkowski (POL) – ATP

Not before 7:00 pm
[3] Andy Murray (GBR) vs [2] R Federer (SUI)

03/01 Update: Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray set-up a semifinal showdown in the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships 2012 in Dubai, U.A.E by beating top 10 opponents in straight sets. Murray beat Tomas Berdych 63 75 while Djokovic trounced fellow Serb Janko Tipsaveric 61 76(6). Djokovic and Murray last met in the semifinals of the Australian Open which Djokovic won in five sets. In the other semifinal, Roger Federer and Juan Martin del Potro both advanced for another re-match after Federer beat del Potro in the Rotterdam finals two weeks ago. Federer beat Mikhail Youzhny in straight sets 63 64 while Del Potro downed fourth seeded Jo-Wifried Tsonga 76(1) 62. Del Potro is aiming to become the first player this year to advance to three straight finals in three consecutive weeks after his Rotterdam runner-up finish and his Marseilles title last week. In the doubles tournament, the top-seeded doubles pair of LLodra and Zimonjic lost to the unseeded pair of Knowle and Peya.

Dubai Tennis 2012: Results – THURSDAY, 01 MARCH, 2012


(1) N Djokovic defeats (7) J Tipsarevic 61 76(6)
(2) R Federer defeats M Youzhny 63 64
(3) A Murray defeats (5) T Berdych 63 75
(8) J Del Potro defeats (4) J Tsonga 76(1) 62

J Knowle / A Peya defeats (1) M Llodra / N Zimonjic 76(3) 76(2)
(3) M Fyrstenberg / M Matkowski defeats M Kohlmann / S Stakhovsky 76(4) 63
(4) M Bhupathi / R Bopanna defeats P Hanley / J Murray 63 63
J Erlich / A Ram defeats (2) R Lindstedt / H Tecau 61 62

Dubai Tennis 2012: Schedule – FRIDAY, 02 MARCH, 2012

CENTRE COURT start 2:00 pm
J Knowle (AUT) / A Peya (AUT) vs [4] M Bhupathi (IND) / R Bopanna (IND) or P Hanley (AUS) / J Murray (GBR) – ATP

Not Before 5:00 PM
[1] N Djokovic (SRB) vs [3] A Murray (GBR) – ATP

Not Before 7:00 PM
[8] J Del Potro (ARG) vs [2] R Federer (SUI) – ATP

COURT 1 start 2:00 pm
[3] M Fyrstenberg (POL) / M Matkowski (POL) vs J Erlich (ISR) / A Ram (ISR) – ATP

02/29 Update: Seven of the eight seeds at the Dubai 2012 ATP tournament all advanced to the quarterfinals led by world #1 Novak Djokovic and 16-time grand slam champion Roger Federer. Djokovic and Federer enjoyed straight set wins to advance, and so did #3-seed Andy Murray, #4-seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, #5-seed Tomas Berdych, and #8-seed Juan Martin del Potro. #7-seed Janko Tipsaveric also advanced but had to come from behind after losing a first set tiebreak. The only seeded casualty was top American player and #6-seed Mardy Fish who lost to former top-10 player Mikhail Youzhny.

The quarterfinal matches will feature several intriguing match-ups including three matches that will feature all top 10 players: an all-Serbian affair between Djokovic and Tipsaveric, Murray vs Berdych, Del Potro vs Tsonga. The only non top 10 affair is the quarterfinal between Federer and Youzhny. The winner of the Dubai 2012 ATP tournament will take home $409,170.

Dubai Tennis 2012: Results – WEDNESDAY, 29 FEBRUARY, 2012


(1) N Djokovic defeats S Stakhovsky 76(5) 63
(2) R Federer defeats F Lopez 75 63
(3) A Murray defeats M Chiudinelli 63 64
(4) J Tsonga defeats L Rosol 63 64
(8) J Del Potro defeats A Golubev 64 62
(5) T Berdych defeats L Lacko 61 62
(7) J Tipsarevic defeats F Cipolla 67(2) 61 61
M Youzhny defeats (6) M Fish 62 76(0)

(4) M Bhupathi / R Bopanna defeats L Dlouhy / A Dolgopolov 64 75
(1) M Llodra / N Zimonjic defeats M Ilhan / M Jaziri 61 63
P Hanley / J Murray defeats A Qureshi / J Rojer 46 76(12) 10-6
(2) R Lindstedt / H Tecau defeats L Paes / J Tipsarevic 64 75

Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships
ATP World Tour 500
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
27 February-3 March 2012

Dubai Tennis 2012: Schedule – WEDNESDAY, 29 FEBRUARY, 2012


CENTRE COURT start 2:00 pm
[3] A Murray (GBR) vs [5] T Berdych (CZE) – ATP

Not Before 5:00 PM
M Youzhny (RUS) vs [2] R Federer (SUI) – ATP

Not Before 7:00 PM
[1] N Djokovic (SRB) vs [7] J Tipsarevic (SRB) – ATP
[8] J Del Potro (ARG) vs [4] J Tsonga (FRA) – ATP

COURT 1 start 2:00 pm
J Erlich (ISR) / A Ram (ISR) vs [2] R Lindstedt (SWE) / H Tecau (ROU) – ATP
M Kohlmann (GER) / S Stakhovsky (UKR) vs [3] M Fyrstenberg (POL) / M Matkowski (POL) – ATP
[1] M Llodra (FRA) / N Zimonjic (SRB) vs J Knowle (AUT) / A Peya (AUT) – ATP
[4] M Bhupathi (IND) / R Bopanna (IND) vs P Hanley (AUS) / J Murray (GBR) – ATP

02/28 Update: #2-seed Roger Federer and #3-seed Andy Murray won in contrasting fashions to lead the advance of the remaining six seeds into the second round of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships 2012 in Dubai, U.A.E. Federer beat Michael Llodra in straight sets 60 76(6) while Murray needed 3 sets to outlast Germany’s Michael Berrer. Other winners for the day included #4-seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, #5-seedTomas Berdych, #7-seed Janko Tipsaveric and #8-seed Juan Martin del Potro. Top seeded Novak Djokovic and #6-seed Mardy Fish advanced to the second round on Monday, the first day of action at the Dubai 2012 ATP tennis tournament.

Sergiy Stakhovsky of Ukraine eliminated the last of the wildcards when he beat Omar Awadhy of the UAE. Awadhy is a 30-year old unranked local tennis player who reached the top 850 of the world rankings for his career best in 2006. He joins two other wildcard players who lost in the first round – Marko Djokovic, the brother of Novak Djokovic and Sergei Bubka, the boyfriend of WTA’s #1 ranked Victoria Azarenka.

Dubai Tennis 2012 Results – TUESDAY, 28 FEBRUARY, 2012

(2) R Federer defeats M Llodra 60 76(6) Match Stats H2H
(3) A Murray defeats M Berrer 63 46 64 Match Stats H2H
(4) J Tsonga defeats M Baghdatis 76(2) 64 Match Stats H2H
(5) T Berdych defeats B Becker 62 62 Match Stats H2H
(7) J Tipsarevic defeats I Kunitsyn 62 62 Match Stats H2H
(8) J Del Potro defeats A Dolgopolov 63 76(5) Match Stats H2H
M Chiudinelli defeats N Davydenko 64 57 64 Match Stats H2H
M Youzhny defeats R Gasquet 63 00 Match Stats H2H
F Cipolla defeats I Ljubicic 62 75 Match Stats H2H
S Stakhovsky defeats O Awadhy 61 62 Match Stats H2H
F Lopez defeats N Mahut 64 64 Match Stats H2H

J Erlich / A Ram defeats S Lipsky / R Ram 63 75 Match Stats
J Knowle / A Peya defeats M Ghareeb / A Maqdas 64 61 Match Stats

Dubai Tennis 2012 Schedule – WEDNESDAY, 29 FEBRUARY, 2012

CENTRE COURT start 2:00 pm
[3] A Murray (GBR) vs [Q] M Chiudinelli (SUI) – ATP

Not Before 4:00 PM
[1] N Djokovic (SRB) vs S Stakhovsky (UKR) – ATP

Not Before 7:00 PM
F Lopez (ESP) vs [2] R Federer (SUI) – ATP
L Rosol (CZE) vs [4] J Tsonga (FRA) – ATP

COURT 1 start 2:00 pm
F Cipolla (ITA) vs [7] J Tipsarevic (SRB) – ATP
[Q] L Lacko (SVK) vs [5] T Berdych (CZE) – ATP

Not Before 4:30 PM
[8] J Del Potro (ARG) vs [Q] A Golubev (KAZ) – ATP
[4] M Bhupathi (IND) / R Bopanna (IND) vs L Dlouhy (CZE) / A Dolgopolov (UKR) – ATP

COURT 3 start 2:00 pm
A Qureshi (PAK) / J Rojer (NED) vs P Hanley (AUS) / J Murray (GBR) – ATP
[6] M Fish (USA) vs M Youzhny (RUS) – ATP
L Paes (IND) / J Tipsarevic (SRB) vs [2] R Lindstedt (SWE) / H Tecau (ROU) – ATP
[1] M Llodra (FRA) / N Zimonjic (SRB) vs [WC] M Ilhan (TUR) / M Jaziri (TUN) – ATP

02/27 Update: World #1 Novak Djokovic won his 16th straight match at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships by eliminating Cedrik-Marcel Stebe in straights sets 64 62 at the start of the Dubai 2012 ATP tennis tournament. Djokovic now advances to the second round as he is attempting to become the first ever player to win the Dubai tournament in four consecutive years. He will be heavily favored to win his next match where he will meet the winner of Ukraine’s Sergiy STAKHOVSKY and UAE’s Omar AWADHY. Stakhovsky is ranked #74 in the world while Awadhy is a 30-year old local wildcard who is currently listed as unranked in the ATP tour website.

Joining Djokovic in the second round is American 6th seed Mardy Fish. Fish beat Andreas Beck 61 61 and will advance against the winner of the first round match between the Mikhail YOUZHNY of Russia and Richard GASQUET of France. World #3 and second seeded Roger Federer is scheduled to play his first match on Tuesday against Michael LLODRA of France. Llodra was a finalist in last week’s Marseilles Open. Besides Djokovic, Federer was the only other player to have won the Dubai ATP tennis tournament for 3 consecutive years. He achieved the feat in 2003 to 2005 and also won the 2007 tournament. Federer is going for his 5th Dubai title this year – a record for the tournament.

Two interesting wildcard players with strong athletic connections didn’t win in the first day of action. Marko Djokovic, the younger brother of Novak lost in straight sets to Kazakhstan’s Andrey Golubev. Marko who is currently ranked #869 gained entry into the tournament via a wildcard and he was beaten 63 62 by Golubev who is ranked #143 in the world. The other wildcard, Sergei Bubka, the 25-year old ranked #190 lost a closely fought match to #76 Lukas Lacko of Slovakia. Lacko emerged the winner after a third set contest that featured 30 points in the final tiebreak and where Bubka held multiple match points in a 26 62 76(14) loss. Like Marko Djokovic, Sergei Bubka is also connected to a tennis player #1 being world #1 Victoria Azarenka’s boyfriend. Bubka is also the son of Olympic pole vault champion Sergey Bubka.

Dubai 2012 Tennis Results: MONDAY, 27 FEBRUARY, 2012

(1) N Djokovic defeats C Stebe 64 62 Match Stats H2H
L Lacko defeats S Bubka 26 62 76(14) Match Stats H2H
A Golubev defeats M Djokovic 63 62 Match Stats H2H
(6) M Fish defeats A Beck 61 61 Match Stats H2H
L Rosol defeats A Mannarino 62 62 Match Stats H2H

M Kohlmann / S Stakhovsky defeats J Cerretani / I Ljubicic 75 64 Match Stats
(3) M Fyrstenberg / M Matkowski defeats M Baghdatis / M Youzhny 62 75 Match Stats

Dubai 2012 Tennis Schedule: TUESDAY, 28 FEBRUARY, 2012

CENTRE COURT start 2:00 pm
[3] A Murray (GBR) vs [Q] M Berrer (GER) – ATP

Not Before 4:00 PM
M Baghdatis (CYP) vs [4] J Tsonga (FRA) – ATP

Not Before 7:00 PM
M Llodra (FRA) vs [2] R Federer (SUI) – ATP
[8] J Del Potro (ARG) vs A Dolgopolov (UKR) – ATP
COURT 1 start 12:00 noon
J Erlich (ISR) / A Ram (ISR) vs S Lipsky (USA) / R Ram (USA) – ATP

Not Before 2:00 PM
N Davydenko (RUS) vs [Q] M Chiudinelli (SUI) – ATP
I Kunitsyn (RUS) vs [7] J Tipsarevic (SRB) – ATP

Not Before 4:00 PM
B Becker (GER) vs [5] T Berdych (CZE) – ATP
N Mahut (FRA) vs F Lopez (ESP) – ATP

Dubai 2012 Tennis ATP Preview: Djokovic, Federer lead Strong Field

The Dubai 2012 draw was announced with the top 2 seeds Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer in opposites sides of the draw and will not meet earlier than the final match. Andy Murray is in the same half of the draw as Djokovic and both players could meet in the semifinals. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga is drawn in Federer’s half of the draw. Potential quarterfinal match-ups include Djokovic vs #7 Janko Tipsaveric, Murray vs #5 Tomas Berdych, Tsonga vs #8 Juan Martin del Potro and Federer vs #6 Mardy Fish. World #2 Rafael Nadal is not entered in the tournament. The winner will take home $409,170. [Get the latest Dubai 2012 ATP Tennis updated news and results].

Dubai 2012 Tennis ATP Preview: Defending champion, 3-time winner and world #1 Novak Djokovic will lead a strong field in this year’s Dubai 2012 tennis ATP tournament. Eight of the top 10 players are included in the entry list, including 4-time winner and last year’s runner-up Roger Federer. World #2 and 2006 champion Rafael Nadal is opting out of this year’s tournament. World #4 Andy Murray and #6 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga are expected to challenge the top two seeds. The rest of the top 10 players entered in the 2012 Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships include #7 Tomas Berdych, #8 Mardy Fish, #9 Janko Tipsarevic, and #10 Juan Martin del Potro.

Dubai 2012 Tennis: List of Champions
2011 Novak Djokovic bt Roger Federer 6–3, 6–3
2010 Novak Djokovic bt Mikhail Youzhny 7–5, 5–7, 6–3
2009 Novak Djokovic bt David Ferrer 7–5, 6–3
2008 Andy Roddick bt Feliciano López 6–7(8–10), 6–4, 6–2
2007 Roger Federer bt Mikhail Youzhny 6–4, 6–3
2006 Rafael Nadal bt Roger Federer 2–6, 6–4, 6–4
2005 Roger Federer bt Ivan Ljubičić 6–1, 6–7(6–8), 6–3
2004 Roger Federer bt Feliciano López 4–6, 6–1, 6–2
2003 Roger Federer bt Jiří Novák 6–1, 7–6(7–2)
2002 Fabrice Santoro bt Younes El Aynaoui 6–4, 3–6, 6–3
2001 Juan Carlos Ferrero bt Marat Safin 6–2, 3–1, retired
2000 Nicolas Kiefer bt Juan Carlos Ferrero 7–5, 4–6, 6–3
1999 Jérôme Golmard bt Nicolas Kiefer 6–4, 6–2
1998 Àlex Corretja bt Félix Mantilla 7–6(7–0), 6–1
1997 Thomas Muster bt Goran Ivanišević 7–5, 7–6(7–3)
1996 Goran Ivanišević bt Albert Costa 6–4, 6–3
1995 Wayne Ferreira bt Andrea Gaudenzi 6–3, 6–3
1994 Magnus Gustafsson bt Sergi Bruguera 6–4, 6–2
1993 Karel Nováček bt Fabrice Santoro 6–4, 7–5

Dubai 2012 Tennis: Player Entry List
Player Name NATIONALITY Rank
Novak Djokovic SRB 1
Roger Federer SUI 3
Andy Murray GBR 4
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga FRA 6
Tomas Berdych CZE 7
Mardy Fish USA 8
Janko Tipsarevic SRB 9
Juan Martin del Potro ARG 10
Feliciano Lopez ESP 15
Richard Gasquet FRA 16
Alexandr Dolgopolov UKR 18
Ivan Ljubicic CRO 32
Mikhail Youzhny RUS 39
Michael Llodra FRA 43
Marcos Baghdatis CYP 45
Dmitry Tursunov RUS 49
Nikolay Davydenko RUS 52
Sergiy Stakhovsky UKR 67
Flavio Cipolla ITA 75
Nicolas Mahut FRA 78
Igor Kunitsyn RUS 80
Lukas Rosol CZE 81
Benjamin Becker GER 344

Dubai 2012 Tennis: Top Four Players in the 2011 Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships

CHAMPION: Novak Djokovic

World No. 3 Novak Djokovic became the 2011 Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships for the third straight time as he defeated top seed Roger Federer 6-3, 6-3 in the championship match. He has now won 20 tour-level titles with a finals record of 20 wins against 13 losses, the sixth active player to achieve this milestone. Djokovic joins Federer as the only other player to win three consecutive titles in Dubai and now holds a 15-match winning streak at the tournament.

RUNNER – UP: Roger Federer

World # 2 Roger Federer missed winning a fifth title in the 2011 Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships as he lost in straight sets to Djokovic. It was his second loss in seven final appearances in the tournament. Federer said “…It’s a pity, but, look, Novak played great.”


#3 seed Tomas Berdych impressed on his run through to the semi-finals of the 2011 Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships. He did not drop a single set in his first three matches but was forced to retire with a left leg injury against Novak Djokovic in the semi-finals.

SEMIFINALIST: Richard Gasquet

Gasquet of France improved his ranking by seven spots after reaching the 2011 Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships semifinals. It was his first ATP World Tour semi-final of the season losing to top-seeded Roger Federer.

TRIVIA: In 2005, two ATP World Tour Champions – Andre Agassi and Roger Federer – scaled the Burj Al Arab for a friendly practice session atop the helipad at the iconic hotel.

Dubai 2012 Tennis: Official Tournament Information

Name: Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships
Category: ATP World Tour 500
Place: Dubai, U.A.E
Date: 27.02.2012-03.03.2012
Draw Size: S-32 D-16 Surface:
Hard Prize Money: $ 1,700,475
Total Financial Commitment: $ 2,313,975
Ticket Hotline: +9714-224-4568

Dubai 2012 Tennis: Ranking Points and Prize Money Breakdown

Round: Ranking Points (Prize Money)

Winner: 500 ($409,170)
Finalist: 300 ($184,470)
Semi Finalist: 180 ($87,380)
Quarter Finalist: 90 ($42,165)
Second Round: 45 ($21,500)
First Round: 0 ($11,825)

Stosur slams Serena to win US Open, 1st Grand Slam

Stosur wins 2011 US Open for first Grand Slam

In what is being dubbed as one of the greatest upset in recent tennis history, #7-seed Sam Stosur beat #28-seed Serena Williams in straight sets 62 63 to win the 2011 US Open and her first grand slam singles title. Despite being ranked lower, Williams was the heads-on favorite to win the match. She won 2 hardcourt titles over the summer including a straight set victory over Stosur in Toronto, and she headed into the championship match without dropping a set and riding an 18-match winning streak. Serena is also the most formidable Grand Slam opponent in this generation, winning 13 grand slam titles in 16 championship matches.
Stosur played a clean aggressive match with 20 winners and just 12 unforced errors. Serena was erratic with 19 winners and 25 unforced errors – still good enough to beat a lot of players but not the Australian on this particular day. Stosur now joins Na Li and Petra Kvitova as first time grand slam winners this year. She also became the first Australian woman to win a singles grand slam title in 38 years. Stosur’s US Open prize will be $1.8 million – her biggest single paycheck to date. Serena on the other hand will bring home $1.4 million – $900,000 for the runner-up prize and an additional $500,000 bonus from winning the US Open series.
Stosur was playing a grand slam championship match for the second time. In 2010, she was the favorite to take the French Open title but was beaten by an inspired Francesca Schiavone. In her interview, Stosur credits her self belief but also her bewilderment on how she managed to win the tournament.
“I had to believe I had a chance. Having two victories over her in the past helped me feel it was possible. I was able to step up and hit my favorite shot – my forehand – off nearly every second serve she hit, which put her under pressure every time she missed a first serve… After that first set I sat down and could feel my heart pounding out of my chest. I thought, ‘I’m up a set now, I’ve got a chance to win one out of the next two.”
“I can’t believe I actually won this tournament. To go out there and play the way I did – you hope to be able to do that, but to actually do it is unbelievable.”
As for Serena, she was gracious in her praise for Stosur’s excellent play, and was reflective on her comeback so far. “I want to give all the credit to Sam, because I think she played really, really well… The last 14 months have been really hard. Six months ago I never thought I’d have even have a chance to play for the US Open, let alone seven weeks ago. I’m excited I’m healthy and alive, and still competing with the best.” She however, has an ominous warning for the other players. “But every time I lose, I get better. So watch out.”
Serena vs Stosur – 2011 US OPEN Final – Head to Head Match-up

4 (4) 2008 OLYMPICS HARD R32 S.Williams 6-2 6-0          79
2 (1) 2009 SYDNEY HARD R32 S.Williams 6-3 6-7(4) 7-5     46
2 (1) 2009 STANFORD HARD Q S. Stosur 6-2 3-6 6-2         20
1 (1) 2010 AUSTRALIAN OPEN HARD R16 S.Williams 6-4 6-2   13 (13)
1 (1) 2010 FRENCH OPEN CLAY Q S. Stosur 6-2 6-7(2) 8-6    7 (7)
80    2011 TORONTO HARD F S.Williams 6-4 6-2             11 (10)
31    2011 CINCINNATI HARD R32 S. Stosur W/O             10 (10)

13-time grand slam champion Serena Williams will be the heavy favorite when she faces Australian Samantha Stosur in the championship match of the 2011 US Open. Despite being seeded #28, the American has ripped through the draw of this year’s last grand slam without the loss of a set and has bundled out #4 Victoria Azarenka in the third round and #1 Caroline Wozniacki in the semifinals. She is now in the midst of a remarkable 18-match winning streak after winning two hardcourt tournaments over the summer. Serena hasn’t played for almost a year after winning her 13th grand slam title at Wimbledon in July 2010 due to injuries.

While Serena has won two tournaments this year, Stosur hasn’t won a single tournament although she reached the final of the Toronto tournament losing to Serena herself in straight sets. She will however relish her second trip to a grand slam final. She reached her first slam final at the 2010 French Open where she beat Serena in the quarterfinals when the American was then ranked #1 in the world. She has also beaten Serena in a hardcourt tournament winning their 2009 quarterfinal at Stanford in three sets. Stosur trails Serena 2-4 in their head-to-head series. She will try to emulate Na Li and Petra Kvitova in winning her first grand slam this year. Whatever the outcome of the match, Stosur will rise to the #7 ranking.

Serena will be playing in her 17th grand slam championship match. She has a 13-win and 3-loss record. Her losses are to Venus Williams at the 2000 US Open, Maria Sharapova at 2004 Wimbledon, and again to Venus Williams at Wimbledon in 2008.

Both women stand to gain a place in history if they win. For Serena, she will join the select list of Margaret Court, Billie Jean King, Chris Evert, Martina Navratilova and Steffi Graf as the only women to have won the US Open at least 4 times. She will also win a total of $2.8 million for winning both the US Open and the US Open series – the single highest paycheck in either men or women’s tennis. For Stosur, she will be the first Australian woman to win the US Open in almost 40 years. The last winner from Down Under was Court.

Serena Williams on Sam Stosur:

“I feel like tomorrow going in we both have the same chances of winning.  She’s playing great.  I have been watching her this whole tournament.  I’m not surprised that she’s in the final. She’s such a great player and a great athlete and a nice girl.  You know, it’s definitely gonna be tough for me, so we’ll see.  You know, we’ll see.”

“… Sam’s such a fighter.  I think she is underrated as a fighter, because she often comes back when she’s down. So you have to really watch out for that.”

Sam Stosur on Serena Williams:

“I think playing Serena in a final is kind of bigger than maybe most other matches.  But obviously home crowd favorite American.  It’s gonna be a great atmosphere if it’s her.  And if it’s not her, then it’s gonna be fantastic as well.  We will see what happens and whoever my opponent ends up being.”

“I think the one good thing is that one of the matches I beat Serena was actually in a Grand Slam.  So I think that’s obviously a big, you know, confidence booster if I end up playing her to know that I have been able to do it in a major tournament. But, you know, every tournament is new, and she’s obviously been playing extremely well and wants to — she comes back, and I’m sure it’s always to win Grand Slam titles.  It’s gonna be tough if it’s against her.”

Serena Williams – Road to 2011 US Open Final

SF: bt #1-seed Caroline Wozniacki (DEN) – 62 64
QF: bt #17-seed Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) – 75 61
4R: bt #16-seed Ana Ivanovic (SRB) – 63 64
3R: bt #4-seed Victoria Azarenka (BLR) – 61 75
2R: bt Michaella Kracijek (NED) – 60 61
1R: bt Bojana Jovanovski (SRB) – 61 61

Samantha Stosur – Road to 2011 US Open Final

SF: bt Angelique Kerber (GER) – 63 26 62
QF: bt #2-seed Vera Zvonareva (RUS) – 63 63
4R: bt #25-seed Maria Kirilenko (RUS) – 62 67(15) 63
3R: bt #24-seed Nadia Petrova (RUS) – 76(5) 67(5) 75
2R: bt Coco Vandeweghe (USA) – 63 64
1R: bt Sofia Arvidsson (SWE) – 62 63

Spain, Argentina reaches 2011 Davis Cup Finals

2011 Davis Cup Semifinal Results: Spain beats France, Argentina downs Serbia

Spain won both its reverse singles matches in Day 2 to beat France 4-1 and advance to the 2011 Davis Cup finals. Rafael Nadal beat Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in straight sets 6-0 6-2 6-4 to clinch the third point in the tie, and Fernando Verdasco beat Richard Gasquet 6-2 6-1 in the final match. In the other semifinal match, world #1 Novak Djokovic was forced to retire while trailing 6-7(5) 0-3 to Juan Martin del Potro. Janko Tipsaveric then won against Juan Monaco who retired in the non-bearing fifth match 6-2 0-0 for a final score of 3-2 in favor of Argentina. The loss meant that Serbia will not be able to defend its championship in the Davis Cup finals to be held this December. Argentina now advances to its fourth Davis Cup final and will be aiming to win its first title against Spain. Spain is the most successful nation in the tournament in the past 12 years winning the championships in 2000, 2004, 2008, and 2009 while finishing runner-up in 2003. The USA continues to be the most successful Davis Cup nation with 32 titles with the last title coming in 2007. Australia follows with 28 Davis Cup titles.

Serbia vs Argentina Davis Cup Semifinal – Tie 1
Venue: Belgrade Arena, Belgrade, Serbia

Day 1:

David Nalbandian (#74) bt Victor Troicki (#16): 64 46 62 63
Argentina 1, Serbia 0

Juan Martin del Potro (#17) bt Janko Tipsaveric (#13) 75 63 64
Argentina 2, Serbia 0

Day 2:
Nenad Zimonjic – Viktor Troicki bt Juan Ignacio Chela – Juan Monaco 76(4) 64 62
Argentina 2, Serbia 1

Day 3:
Juan Martin del Potro (#17) bt Novak Djokovic (#1) 76(5) 30 retired
Argentina 3, Serbia 1

Janko Tipsaveric bt Juan Monaco 62 00 retired
Argentina 3, Serbia 2

Head-to-Head: Serbia leads Argentina 1 – 0

Sep 17 Update: Argentina leads Serbia, 2-1. Serbia, playing without world #1 is alive in their semifinal tie against Argentina by winning the doubles match. Nenad Zimonjic and Viktor Troicki beat Juan Ignacio Chela and Juan Monaco in straight sets, 76(4) 64 62 to prevent being eliminated from the Davis Cup. Serbia won the title in 2010, and will be hoping that world #16 Victor Troicki and #13 Janko Tipsaveric will win the reverse singles matches against lower ranked opponents on Day 3 to advance to the finals. However, though Argentina will be fielding lower ranked players, they will have the advantage of experience on critical matches. Juan Martin del Potro, a former US Open champion will be going against Troicki, while former Wimbledon finalist David Nalbandian will be playing against Tipsaveric.

Spain vs France Davis Cup Semifinal – Tie 2
Venue: Plaza de Toros de los Califas, Cordoba, Spain

Day 1:

Rafael Nadal (#2) bt Richard Gasquet (#15): 63 60 61
Spain 1, France 0

David Ferrer (#5) bt Gilles Simon (#11) 61 64 61
Spain 2, France 0

Day 2:
Michael Llodra – Jo-Wilfried Tsonga bt Feliciano Lopez – Fernando Verdasco 61 62 60
Spain 2, France 1

Day 3:
Rafael Nadal (#2) bt Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (#10) 60 62 64
Spain 3, France 1

Fernando Verdasco (#22) bt Richard Gasquet (#15) 62 61
Spain 4, France 1

Head-to-Head: Spain leads France 5 – 2

Sep 17 Update: Spain leads France, 2-1. Spain will be looking forward to advancing to the Davis Cup finals by winning one of the reverse singles matches on Day 3 and their players are favored on both matches. World #2 Rafael Nadal will be going against #11 Gilles Simon and Nadal holds a 4-1 advantage in their head-to-head matches including winning the past two matches they’ve played. The second reverse singles match will feature #5 David Ferrer against #15 Richard Gasquet. Ferrer holds a 5-1 advantage and has won their only match played on clay.

Photo Credit:

Djokovic beats Nadal to win US Open, 4th Grand Slam

Djokovic beats Nadal – wins 1st US Open title

World #1 Novak Djokovic punctuated a remarkable season by beating #2 Rafael Nadal to win the 2011 US Open in four sets 6-2, 6-4, 6-7(3), 6-1. This is Djokovic’s sixth win over Nadal this year, and all wins have occurred in championship matches including the finals of Wimbledon. Djokovic won his 10th title of the season and brings home a total of $2.3 million – $1.8 for the US Open title, and an additional $500,000 for placing second in the US Open series. He improved his season record to an incredible 64-2 win-loss record. His victory at the US Open assured him of the year-end world #1 ranking.

In his winner’s speech, Djokovic commented on his incredible season and on winning the US Open title for the first time. “It really sounds unreal; it’s an incredible feeling. I had an amazing year and it keeps going. Every time I play Rafa it’s a big challenge. I want to congratulate him on a great tournament again. I wish that we will have many more tough matches in the upcoming years. It’s an absolute pleasure to be a part of the very few players that have won this trophy throughout history.”

Nadal was going for his 11th major title but failed to defend his US Open title. He is now 3-6 in final matches this year, all six losses coming from Djokovic. The loss was also Nadal’s fourth loss at a Grand Slam final – his second major final loss to Djokovic. He takes home $900,000 for finishing as runner-up. “Obviously I’m disappointed,” said Nadal. “This guy is doing unbelievable things, so I just want to congratulate Novak. What he did this year is probably impossible to repeat. I tried my best in every moment.

Nadal vs Djokovic – US Open Final Match-up

It’s a fitting end to the Grand Slam season with world #1 Nadal Djokovic going against #2 Rafael Nadal for the US Open championship title. Djokovic and Nadal had contrasting semifinal victories – Djokovic came back from a two-set deficit and saved two match points to beat 16-time grand slam champion Roger Federer while Nadal beat Andy Murray in a straight forward 4-set victory. The two rivals will be meeting for the 29th time. While Nadal leads their current head-to-head with 16 wins against 12 losses, Djokovic has compiled an amazing 63-2 win-loss season so far – including beating Nadal in all five championship matches they’ve played this year. Their last meeting was at the Wimbledon final where Djokovic won in four sets on his way to collecting his third grand slam title. Djokovic will be going for his 10th tournament victory this year while Nadal will collect his fourth if he wins the match. The winner will go home with $1.8 million.

This 29th meeting will be a rematch of last year’s US Open final where Nadal beat Djokovic in four sets. At that time, Nadal was the #1 player in the world while Djokovic was #3.

Djokovic on playing Nadal: “You know, I know that I have a game that is good enough to win against him. I proved that this year in three different surfaces, so I believe that I have a good chance. I need to go out on the court believing I can win. But, you know, we’re talking about a player who has won 10 majors already in his career and he’s only 25. He’s defending his title. I think last year in 2010 throughout the whole tournament and in the finals I never seen him serve better than that tournament. So I think, you know, again, depends from my serve and his serve, as well. But, yeah, it’s gonna be a tough match.”

Nadal on playing Djokovic: “I think I gonna do serve and volley. (Laughter.) You know, I have my game, and I beat him in the past playing my game. The thing is play my game very well and be enough strong mentally all the time, fight every ball, believe in the victory in every moment. That’s something that for moments this year I didn’t. But just play aggressive, try to play a similar match than last year here. I saw that match a lot of times and I know what I have to do, but I don’t know if I gonna be able to do it. So that’s always the same.”

#1 Novak Djokovic – path to 2011 US Open Final:

SF: bt R.FEDERER [3] 6-7(7) 4-6 6-3 6-2 7-5
QF: bt J.TIPSAREVIC [20] 7-6(2) 6-7(3) 6-0 3-0 Ret.
4R: bt A.DOLGOPOLOV [22] 7-6(14) 6-4 6-2
3R: bt N.DAVYDENKO 6-3 6-4 6-2
2R: bt C.BERLOCQ 6-0 6-0 6-2
1R: bt C. NILAND 6-0 5-1 Ret.

#2 Rafael Nadal – path to 2011 US Open Final:

SF: bt A.MURRAY [4] 6-4 6-2 3-6 6-2
QF: bt A.RODDICK [21] 6-2 6-1 6-3
4R: bt G.MULLER 7-6(1) 6-1 6-2
3R: bt D.NALBANDIAN 7-6(5) 6-1 7-5
2R: bt N.MAHUT 6-2 6-2 Ret.
1R: bt A.GOLUBEV 6-3 7-6(1) 7-5

Nadal vs Djokovic: Head to Head (Nadal leads Djokovic: 16-12)

Year Tournament City
Surface Round Winner  Score

2011 Wimbledon Great Britain
Grass F Djokovic, Novak 6-4, 6-1, 1-6, 6-3

2011 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 Rome Italy
Clay F Djokovic, Novak 6-4, 6-4

2011 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 Madrid Spain
Clay F Djokovic, Novak 7-5, 6-4

2011 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 Miami FL, U.S.A.
Hard F Djokovic, Novak 4-6, 6-3, 7-6(4)

2011 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 Indian Wells CA, U.S.A.
Hard F Djokovic, Novak 4-6, 6-3, 6-2

2010 Barclays ATP World Tour Finals London, England
Hard RR Nadal, Rafael 7-5, 6-2

2010 US Open NY, U.S.A.
Hard F Nadal, Rafael 6-4, 5-7, 6-4, 6-2

2009 Barclays ATP World Tour Finals London, England
Hard RR Djokovic, Novak 7-6(5), 6-3

2009 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 Paris France
Hard S Djokovic, Novak 6-2, 6-3

2009 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 Cincinnati OH, U.S.A.
Hard S Djokovic, Novak 6-1, 6-4

2009 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 Madrid Spain
Clay S Nadal, Rafael 3-6, 7-6(5), 7-6(9)

2009 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 Rome Italy
Clay F Nadal, Rafael 7-6(2), 6-2

2009 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 Monte Carlo Monaco
Clay F Nadal, Rafael 6-3, 2-6, 6-1

2009 ESP vs. SRB WG 1st RD Spain
Clay RR Nadal, Rafael 6-4, 6-4, 6-1

2008 Beijing Olympics China
Hard S Nadal, Rafael 6-4, 1-6, 6-4

2008 ATP Masters Series Cincinnati OH, U.S.A.
Hard S Djokovic, Novak 6-1, 7-5

2008 London / Queen’s Club Great Britain
Grass F Nadal, Rafael 7-6(6), 7-5

2008 Roland Garros France
Clay S Nadal, Rafael 6-4, 6-2, 7-6(3)

2008 ATP Masters Series Hamburg Germany
Clay S Nadal, Rafael 7-5, 2-6, 6-2

2008 ATP Masters Series Indian Wells CA, U.S.A.
Hard S Djokovic, Novak 6-3, 6-2

2007 Tennis Masters Cup China
Hard RR Nadal, Rafael 6-4, 6-4

2007 ATP Masters Series Canada Canada
Hard S Djokovic, Novak 7-5, 6-3

2007 Wimbledon Great Britain
Grass S Nadal, Rafael 3-6, 6-1, 4-1 RET

2007 Roland Garros France
Clay S Nadal, Rafael 7-5, 6-4, 6-2

2007 ATP Masters Series Rome Italy
Clay Q Nadal, Rafael 6-2, 6-3

2007 ATP Masters Series Miami FL, U.S.A.
Hard Q Djokovic, Novak 6-3, 6-4

2007 ATP Masters Series Indian Wells CA, U.S.A.
Hard F Nadal, Rafael 6-2, 7-5

2006 Roland Garros France
Clay Q Nadal, Rafael 6-4, 6-4 RET