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Updated: 18 min 33 sec ago

Harrison Shares The "Last Time"...

Tue, 05/17/2016 - 9:34pm

Speaking during last month’s ATP Challenger Tour event in Tallahassee, Florida, American Ryan Harrison reveals the last time… 

I missed a flight?

It was about a month ago. We were on our way to the airport and the airport in Austin [Texas] is not too big, so usually an hour before is pretty safe. We were a mile away from the airport and there was a massive construction stop with only one lane and we couldn't get through. We just barely missed the flight.

I lost something important?

I was flying back two years ago from Wimbledon and I left my driver's license at a restaurant, but someone actually mailed it back to me. I’m not sure how, but it was someone from Chicago. I had the return address, so I sent them a Wimbledon towel in return.

I paid money to rent a court or buy tennis balls?

I have to do that every time I go home. I know the guys really well at the club I practise at and they've always been great about courts, but we always buy the balls.

Being famous helped me?

Probably last week at Bonefish Grill. We went for dinner for my fiancee’s birthday. Someone who had affiliation with the [ATP Challenger Tour] tournament in Savannah snuck us ahead on the waitlist.

I strung a tennis racquet?

I do that pretty frequently too. I have a stringer at the house.

I cooked for myself or others?

Last week. I have a grill at the house and all of our friends are pretty good about knowing that when I’m off the road, I usually don't really want to go out but still would like to see them. Every time I’ve been gone for three or four weeks, we’ll have our friends over and I’ll grill and get something together.

I met a childhood idol?

I met Phil Mickelson at the PGA event in Austin. He was playing against a friend of mine at a match play event, so it was just briefly in passing. I watched Phil growing up, though, so that was pretty cool.

I shared a hotel room with another player?

Austin Krajicek and I shared housing, if that counts. It was the ATP Challenger Tour event in Winnetka last year.

I asked someone famous for an autograph or selfie?

I can honestly say that I’ve never done that.

I went to a concert?

I saw Jake Owen and Jason Aldean and Thomas Rhett for my 21st birthday almost three years ago.

I got upgraded on a flight?

I got upgraded coming from Australia back to Los Angeles this year. I was very, very lucky. We were trying to buy the flight upgrade and the woman at the ticket counter couldn't get it processed in time because something happened with her computer, so she just printed the upgrade and gave it to us. 

#NextGen Stars Soar Into Second Round Of Roland Garros Qualifying

Tue, 05/17/2016 - 6:40pm

Day two of qualifying at Roland Garros saw a trio of #NextGen stars win their opening round matches on Tuesday, including Elias Ymer of Sweden, and Russians Karen Khachanov and Andrey Rublev.

No. 11 seed Ymer moved into the second round of qualifying by defeating Dmitry Popko of Kazakhstan, 6-3, 6-3. The Swede successfully qualified for all four Grand Slams last year and will look to replicate that feat this year at Roland Garros. Next up for Ymer is Matteo Donati of Italy.

No. 12 seed Khachanov made his debut at Roland Garros a memorable one by scoring a convincing win over Australian Brydan Klein, 6-3, 6-3. The Russian won his first ATP Challenger Tour title of the year last week in Samarkand, Uzbekistan. He’ll now play Jordi Samper-Montana of Spain for a place in the final round of qualifying. 

Rublev, also making his debut at Roland Garros, came out on the winning end of a lengthy battle against Jan Satral of Czech Republic, 6-4, 6-7(4), 6-4. The 18-year-old has good memories of France, having won his first ATP Challenger Tour title this February in the city of Quimper. Rublev has another tough match waiting for him on Thursday when he plays No. 4 seed Jan-Lennard Struff

Both the upset and comeback of the day went to 17-year-old French wild card Geoffrey Blancaneaux, who saved two match points in defeating Hiroki Moriya of Japan, 3-6, 7-6(4), 6-1. Federico Gaio of Italy prevailed in what was by far the longest match of the day, hitting a backhand lob winner on match point to advance past Uladzimir Ignatik of Belarus, 7-6(3), 6-7(6), 9-7.

All second-round qualifying matches will take place on Wednesday, with one of the feature matches pitting former Top 10 player Radek Stepanek of Czech Republic against Australian Matthew Barton.

Anderson Opens Nice Stay With Win

Tue, 05/17/2016 - 5:42pm

Kevin Anderson knocked out a 2016 titlist and earned his third match win of the season on Tuesday at the Open de Nice Cote d' Azur in France. The South African hit seven aces and won 70 per cent of his service points to dismiss Diego Schwartzman, the TEB BNP Paribas Istanbul Open champion, 7-6(4), 6-3.

After winning the first-set tie-break, Anderson broke the Argentine to go up 3-1. The No. 3 seed then erased both second-set break points to advance.

Anderson has dealt with left knee and right shoulder problems and underwent minor ankle surgery on 15 March. The World No. 20 has extra incentive to stay healthy this week: He turns 30 on Wednesday. In the quarter-finals, he will face No. 5 seed Joao Sousa. The Portuguese overcame a one-set deficit to beat Victor Estrella Burgos 3-6, 6-4, 6-4. Sousa earned two early breaks in the third set and later served for the win.

World No. 63 Adrian Mannarino needed only 52 minutes to win an all-French battle and dispatch fourth seed Benoit Paire 6-3, 6-0. It's the second time this year Mannarino has beaten Paire, No. 21 in the Emirates ATP Rankings, in straight sets. The left-hander won 6-1, 6-3 at the BNP Paribas Open.

Marcel Granollers spoiled Brian Baker's return to Nice by beating the American 6-3, 6-1. Baker was playing in Nice for the first time since reaching the final as a qualifier in 2012 (l. to Almagro). Granollers will face #NextGen player Alexander Zverev in the second round. The 30-year-old Spaniard won their previous meeting, a three-set triumph at the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters last month.

Seventh seed Andreas Seppi outlasted Daniel Munoz de la Nava 6-7(4), 7-5, 6-4 in two hours and 32 minutes. Seppi erased a match point at 4-5 in the second set. In the second round, Seppi will face Paul-Henri Mathieu, who beat #NextGen player Hyeon Chung 7-6(3), 6-3.

Bellucci FedEx ATP Player Profile 2016

Tue, 05/17/2016 - 4:21pm
Which fellow Brazilian inspired Thomaz Bellucci to take up the sport?

Wawrinka Rolls In Home Tournament

Tue, 05/17/2016 - 3:18pm

Switzerland's Stan Wawrinka made the home crowd happy on Tuesday at the Banque Eric Sturdza Geneva Open. The World No. 4 took only 53 minutes to bypass Albert Ramos-Vinolas 6-1, 6-1 and move into the quarter-finals of his home tournament. Wawrinka, the No. 1 seed, received a first-round bye.

He improved to 6-0 against Ramos-Vinolas, No. 53 in the Emirates ATP Rankings. Wawrinka has won two titles so far this season, the Aircel Chennai Open in January and the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships in February. But the defending Roland Garros champion has failed to string three consecutive wins together since Dubai.

He'll next face Pablo Carreno Busta, who beat Inigo Cervantes 6-2, 6-4. Wawrinka won their previous meeting, a three-set contest on clay in 2013.

Reigning Geneva champion Thomaz Bellucci looked eager to defend his title. Bellucci erased all three break points and slid past Mikhail Kukushkin 6-2, 6-1. The Brazilian will face sixth seed Federico Delbonis. The Argentine leads their FedEx ATP Head2Head rivalry 4-2, all of which have been played on clay.

Rajeev Ram improved to 2-1 in his FedEx ATP Head2Head rivalry against Evgeny Donskoy. The American hit 10 aces and prevailed against the Russian qualifier 7-6(5), 4-6, 6-3 in two hours and seven minutes. Ram broke Donskoy at 3-2 in the final set and later served for the win. The 32 year old will face Guillermo Garcia-Lopez.

Denis Istomin ended Florian Mayer's good luck in Geneva. Mayer, who was a lucky loser, lost to Istomin for the third time, 6-2, 6-3. Istomin erased the lone break point faced and won in 57 minutes. He'll play No. 2 seed David Ferrer, who received a first-round bye. Ferrer leads their FedEx ATP Head2Head rivalry 2-1, including a clay-court win in 2013 at the Mutua Madrid Open.

DAY 4 PREVIEW: No. 3 seed Marin Cilic and No. 4 seed John Isner return to the ATP World Tour on Wednesday when they play in the second round of the Banque Eric Sturdza Geneva Open. The 6-foot-6 Cilic and 6-foot-10 Isner missed ATP World Tour Masters 1000 events at Monte-Carlo, Madrid and Rome due to knee injuries. Isner, whose last match came on April 10, begins play against Lukas Rosol. Cilic, who has not played since March 27, opens against fellow 27-year-old Ernests Gulbis.

Also on Court Central, Ferrer makes his Geneva debut against Istomin. Ranked 12th, Ferrer is outside the Top 10 of the Emirates ATP Rankings this week for the first time since October 10, 2010. Though the 34-year-old Spaniard is 16-9 in 2016, he has yet to play in a final – his longest drought to start a season since 2006. Istomin, too, is struggling by his standards. The Uzbek is 4-12 in 2016 and has not reached a quarter-final since St. Petersburg last September.

Bellucci was also off to a slow start this season, losing seven straight matches after advancing to the Quito final. Last week in Rome, the Brazilian beat Gael Monfils and Nicolas Mahut before falling to World No. 1 Novak Djokovic. Though he lost the match, Bellucci became the first player since Roger Federer at Cincinnati in 2012 to sweep six games in a set from the Serb.

Bellucci meets Delbonis in the second match on Court Central. All eight players competing on Court Central have captured an ATP World Tour title, though Delbonis is the only one to do so in 2016. He won a clay-court championship at Marrakech on April 10 and is fifth among all players in clay-court wins this season.

Tecnifibre Launches 2016 Young Guns Contest

Tue, 05/17/2016 - 3:11pm
Gergoire Barrere, Mitchell Krueger, Omar Jasika and Daniil Medvedev feature in Tecnifibre's 2016 Young Guns Contest. For more information visit www.tecnifibre.com/en/youngguns

Tecnifibre Launches 2016 Young Guns Contest

Tue, 05/17/2016 - 3:05pm

Gregoire Barrere, Mitchell Krueger, Omar Jasika and Daniil Medvedev feature in the second edition of the Young Guns Contest, which is part of Tecnifibre's On The Road to the ATP World Tour programme.

The four young players, who are attempting to rise up the Emirates ATP Rankings in 2016, will compete for a $50,000 prize based on their on-court results and also their ability to share their lives on social media.

Visit Tecnifibre Young Guns Website

Barrere, a 22-year-old from France, currently No. 216 in the Emirates ATP Rankings, said, "It is a great challenge and this cash prize is an important amount. Even though I am lucky enough to receive some funding from the [French Tennis] Federation, this amount will, for example, allow me to increase the size of my team to a physio at certain periods of the season. This contest is also an opportunity to become more professional in communicating and getting closer to the people who follow and support me on tour. To work on self-branding is now part of the sport."

American Krueger, also 22, said, "It is opportunity to strike gold! To win this contest will ease my entry into the big leagues! The way to win this cash prize won't be easy, I will need to plan out carefully and be smart on the social networks."

Each of the young players will be assigned a Tecnifibre team mentor - Jeremy Chardy, Denis Kudla, John Millman and Aljaz Bedene - to help them win the competition.

"I am supporting Greg and I will take my role extremely seriously," said Chardy. "We are a team! He told me that I bring him luck because the week after we practised together at the On The Road camp in May, he won an ITF Futures tournament in Angers. He’s on a streak, he’s playing well! We will also try and push his image on the social network sites. We’re going to fight until the end.”

Kudla, who won the inaugural Young Guns contest in 2015, will help Krueger, while Jasika will join forces with fellow Australian Millman and Bedene will support 20-year-old Russian Medvedev.

The winner’s cheque will be presented at the Barclays World Tour Finals in London in November.

How Murray Has Become Top Clay-Court Player

Tue, 05/17/2016 - 1:15pm

A tennis player’s foot hits the clay court…

Sometimes it stops. Mostly it slides. The ground reaction forces, and the impact loads they create, are a lot more complex than we realize for players at all levels of the game to master. It takes trial and error, but once a player figures out the most efficient energy and movement, things suddenly explode in the win/loss column.

Andy Murray, who celebrated his 29th birthday on Sunday by winning the Internazionali BNL d'Italia in Rome, is one of those players who has finally figured the clay-court conundrum. In his mind, and under his feet, clay used to be a mystery.

“I never expected to be having the results I am having on clay,” Murray said after his Rome victory. “I had always been told that clay should really be my best surface, but it took me a long time to gain a little bit of confidence. But also I did make huge improvements in my movement on the surface.”

Murray added, “That has changed my mentality when I go on the court a lot. I don't feel like I'm off-balance anymore and I feel like I can chase most balls down. It's an easy surface for me to move on now.”

An Infosys ATP Beyond the Numbers analysis of Murray’s clay-court resume the past 52 weeks reveals he has actually evolved into one of the best clay-court players in the game.

His Return Rating, determined by adding his winning percentage in the four service return categories, puts him second in the ATP Stats LEADERBOARD during that period, with 179.6 points. He trails only Rafael Nadal, who has 180 points.

Murray is the best in the world on clay in the last 52 weeks with points won returning second serves, at 56 per cent. That’s slightly better than his hard-court average of 55.8 per cent. Murray split-steps well inside the baseline to return second serves, effectively taking the server’s time away by rebounding the ball right back at the server before he has time to adequately prepare.

On clay, Murray is second in the world to Nadal in first-serve return points won, at 36.3 per cent, and second in return games won, at 37.3 per cent. In the 2016 season, Murray is the world leader in return games won on clay at 38 per cent.

Murray is fifth in the world at converting break points on clay in the last 52 weeks at 50 per cent. The Scot is 29-3 in the past 13 months on clay, and is firming as one of the heavy favourites next week at Roland Garros.

“I'm going into Roland Garros with a lot of confidence and really good preparation. I feel like I'm on the right track. So hopefully I can have a good run there,” Murray said.

Murray was runner-up at the Australian Open this year. Unlocked the sliding, fluid energy required to move efficiently on a clay court has him poised to go one step further in Paris.

Behind The Scenes At Rome 2016

Tue, 05/17/2016 - 12:18pm
ATP World Tour Uncovered presented by Peugeot goes behind the scenes at the Internazionali BNL d'Italia in Rome, including interviews with Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray and Rafael Nadal. Photo: AFP/Getty Images

Emirates ATP Rankings 16 May 2016

Tue, 05/17/2016 - 11:51am
See the latest Emirates ATP Rankings as of 16 May 2016.

Garcia Lopez Visits The Colosseum In Rome

Tue, 05/17/2016 - 11:44am
Guillermo Garcia-Lopez visits The Colosseum in Rome and discusses his career with ATP World Tour Uncovered presented by Peugeot.

Garcia Lopez Visit The Colosseum In Rome

Tue, 05/17/2016 - 11:44am
Guillermo Garcia-Lopez visits The Colosseum in Rome and discusses his career with ATP World Tour Uncovered presented by Peugeot.

Fantasy Doubles: American #NextGen Edition

Tue, 05/17/2016 - 4:42am

It’s the dream of all tennis fans. A fantasy match with your favourite players. Here’s the task: pick one – active or retired – to team up with and two to play against. Who would you choose?

ATPWorldTour.com posed this question to the six members of the American #NextGen contingent. After all, players are fans too. They wrote about their selections…

Jared Donaldson
Partner: Novak Djokovic, Opponents: Roger Federer & Rafael Nadal
That’s a tough one. I’ll go with Djokovic, playing against Federer and Nadal. I think Novak’s game most resembles mine. You look for contrasting styles in a doubles partner, but I’m here to learn. Just to see how he would approach playing against Roger and Rafa, especially returning their serves. Our backhands are also the most similar out of those three guys. Of course it’s on a much lesser scale, but I try to play close to his style.

When you look at my generation, the generation I’m competing against, all three of them are the best in the game. Arguably the best in the history of the game. I’ve grown up watching these guys win all the big titles, dominate at the top and basically set the bar for all players for years. I practised with Roger before, but a match like this would be totally different. To be able to spend time with those three would be invaluable.

Taylor Fritz
Partner: Juan Martin del Potro, Opponents: Andre Agassi & Pete Sampras
I’d play with del Potro. Hands down. We’d be unstoppable. He has a few inches on me, but I like to think we have pretty similar games. His forehand is still one of the biggest weapons on the ATP World Tour. I’ll never forget I was 11 when he won the US Open and broke into the Top 5. He was dominating everyone in his path. Ruthless on the court, but so humble off it. That’s what I’ve admired most about delPo. He always has a smile on his face, no matter what he’s gone through. He’s a fighter. I’m a fighter. We’ll click.

Who are we going to play against? Let’s go with Sampras and Agassi. Two of the greatest Americans to ever play the game. They can still bring it, so it won’t be easy. Pete has always been my idol. It was the experience of a lifetime to get to hit with him at a Challenger in Mexico last year. When I first started watching tennis as a kid, I’d try to copy his serve. I like to think our serves ended up somewhat similar. I don’t bring my right foot up during my serve and I have a very simple motion just like him. He was a little before my time, so I’d look at old video of his matches. He had some pop, but it was the accuracy in the clutch, going big on second serves in big points, that was even more incredible. As for Andre, he’s a hard worker and such a character. Just great for the game. We’ll have plenty of laughs. I’m excited for this. When can we make it happen?

Stefan Kozlov
Partner: Andre Agassi, Opponents: Roger Federer & Andy Murray
No doubt playing with Andre. Going old school with that pick. I’ve never gotten the chance to meet him, but I’ve really liked him since I was a kid and I’ve heard a lot of people say that my game is similar to his. I think I play like him, so it would be cool to see him up close. I could learn a lot from that match! His returns are really what set him apart. He might be the best returner ever and I look at his approach there. Just a great overall competitor.

I’d want to take the deuce side when we’re returning against Roger and Andy, but I’d let Andre decide. I think we’d put a lot of returns in the court. We’d all have a lot of fun out there with a lot of good points. Always thought Andy’s great and Roger needs no explanation. I’ve hit with both of them before, but you still don’t know what to expect. I’ve had good practices – with Fed at the US Open and both in Miami – and enjoyed that. They’re both funny and crack a lot of jokes, but they work really hard.

Tommy Paul
Partner: Andy Roddick, Opponents: Jimmy Connors & John McEnroe
Andy’s the man. I hit with him last year at Wimbledon and went to Austin to practise with him for a week. It was a blast. He gave me some advice on how to handle pressure situations. He did alright for himself, so he’s a pretty awesome guy to listen to. Can’t wait to hit the court with him again.

Full confession: Up until a year ago, I wasn’t a fan of watching tennis at all. Yeah, no joke. I barely watched any tennis on TV or even old videos on YouTube. Recently, I started watching more. When I was at the US Open last year, ESPN was showing one of the older matches of McEnroe and Connors. They had a lot of fire when they were playing, but Roddick and I could take them today. If we went back in time to face them in their prime, I think I’d hold back the team a bit. We’d take them to a tie-break, but lose 7-6, 6-4.

Noah Rubin
Partner: Roger Federer, Opponents: John McEnroe & Gael Monfils
EASY. Fed’s on my team. I mean, I definitely think I’m more talented in every aspect of tennis than he is, so it’ll be nice to have him around. Ok, seriously though, he’s always been an idol for me. Truly incredible. I got to work with Djokovic and Nadal, but he’s one of the guys I haven’t really spoken to much. There’s an aura around him and there’s something about Roger Federer that is tough to explain. Really are no words for it, so I’ll leave it there.

On the other side, because he thinks he’s a good doubles player and maybe has some titles to back it up, is John McEnroe. He’s won a couple titles here and there. I train at his academy and there’s a different perspective from being in so many high-pressure situations in big tournaments, that you can only get from someone like him. He’s been so helpful in giving me the tools to focus during my matches and succeed.

And playing with Johnny Mac, I’d have to pick one guy I’ve always wanted to play against: Gael Monfils. Showtime on that side of the court. I’ve always been in awe of his athleticism. I can’t say I’ve tried to mimic it, but I’ve tried to be a smaller, less athletic Monfils. Movement has always been a big aspect of my game and I love grinding for every ball and people saying, “I don’t know how he got that ball.” I love having that effect. When he’s moving and playing well, it’s tough to get a ball past that guy. He comes up with shots that are just incredible.

Frances Tiafoe
Partner: Juan Martin del Potro, Opponents: Andre Agassi & Pete Sampras
I’d have to say me and del Potro playing Agassi and Sampras. I feel like that would be a lot of fun. DelPo is my guy. I want him on my side. The way he plays and how he interacts with the crowd is all class. He’s someone I’ve looked up to. He was the youngest to win a Grand Slam in a long time and just how he broke through, beating the Big Four when they were dominating, was huge.

As an American, facing Agassi and Sampras would be amazing. They’re American legends. For us, they don’t get much bigger than them. Loved Agassi. He was electric. He was wild. You watch his strokes and his attitude and how could you not like him? Would be an epic match against those guys.

Geneva 2016

Mon, 05/16/2016 - 10:52pm

Fratangelo Ready To Make The Most Of Roland Garros Wild Card

Mon, 05/16/2016 - 10:39pm

Bjorn Fratangelo came alive last month on the ATP Challenger Tour during the green clay events held in the U.S. and the American has been rewarded for his efforts with a wild card into Roland Garros.

The main draw opportunity for Fratangelo, who won the boys’ singles title at Roland Garros in 2011, is part of a wild card playoff held for the past five years by the United States Tennis Assocation. The American player who earns the most Emirates ATP Ranking points during the $100,000 events in Sarasota, Florida, and the two $50,000 events in Savannah, Georgia, and Tallahassee, Florida, is declared the winner. Only the two best results a player has during the three-week swing are counted in the standings.

By winning in Savannah and reaching the semi-finals in Sarasota, Fratangelo was the clear winner by picking up 112 Emirates ATP Ranking points. Frances Tiafoe finished in second place (63 points) and Jared Donaldson came in third (48 points).

“I like the challenge because it’s a sure way of who to give the wild card to. There are no questions asked,” said Fratangelo. “It makes the competition even more cut-throat as well. Obviously, I’m happy to take it.”

The green clay that the American ATP Challenger Tour events are held on is different from the red clay of Roland Garros in that the ball bounces slightly lower. Despite this, Fratangelo still believes the surface is an adequate way to prepare for the second Grand Slam of the year.

“It’s not exactly the same, but it’s what we have in the U.S. You can still slide and work the point in a lot of the same ways,” said Fratangelo. “There are a few minor changes to make when we go to Europe, but it’s a good way to prep for the most part.”

It seems that Fratangelo was right with his assessment. The 22-year-old finished as runner-up in last week’s $125,000 ATP Challenger Tour event in Bordeaux, France, and now sits at a career-high Emirates ATP Ranking of No. 104.

He also joins a growing list of Roland Garros wild card playoff champions who have used the opportunity as a springboard for their careers. Brian Baker (2012), Alex Kuznetsov (2013) and Frances Tiafoe (2015) all achieved career-high Emirates ATP Rankings within 12 months of winning the playoff. Now that Fratangelo is on the cusp of reaching the Top 100, he’s looking to advance into that upper echelon by winning his first main draw match at a Grand Slam.

“I’m not at the level where I could win the tournament, but I’d love to win a round or two,” said Fratangelo. “Roland Garros is a place where I have so many good memories and that kickstarted my junior success and transition into the pros. I’m really comfortable there and can’t wait to get started.”

Stepanek Turns Back The Clock In Roland Garros Qualifying

Mon, 05/16/2016 - 10:34pm

Day 1 of qualifying at Roland Garros saw a mix of teenagers and veterans move into the second round, with #NextGen stars Frances Tiafoe, Yoshihito Nishioka and Jared Donaldson joining former Top 10 player Radek Stepanek among the winners on Monday.

No. 20 seed Stepanek, the oldest player in the draw at age 37, opened his campaign for a 13th appearance in the main draw at Roland Garros by defeating Germany's Cedric-Marcel Stebe, 6-4, 6-4. Next up for the Czech player is Matthew Barton.

“I was out for eight months last year, so I’m trying to claw my way back,” Stepanek told the Roland Garros website. “I’m in a good position playing good tennis on clay now, which was not always my favourite surface, but I’m pleased that I’m slowly back now after this injury. I’m feeling 25 again and enjoying every second of my tennis.”

No. 2 seed Nishioka overcame a slow start to defeat French wild card Gleb Sakharov, 2-6, 7-5, 7-5. The Japanese 20-year-old will look to replicate his performance from last year at a minimum, when he also came through qualifying. Next up for him is Henri Laaksonen.

No. 29 seed Donaldson moved into the second round in less-than-ideal fashion after Denys Molchanov, from Ukraine, retired due to injury while leading 5-4 in the first set. The American is looking to come through qualifying at a Grand Slam for the first time in his career. He will play local favourite Axel Michon in the second round.

Over on Court 6, Tiafoe rallied from down a set and a break to defeat Argentinean Guilherme Clezar, 1-6, 7-5, 6-2. Tiafoe jubilantly celebrated after firing a forehand return winner on match point. The American will next play No. 28 seed Saketh Myneni, from India, for a place in the final round of qualifying.

The comeback of the day belonged to French wild card Laurent Lokoli, who rallied from 3-5 down in the second set to defeat German Julien Reister, 0-6, 7-5, 6-2. Meanwhile, fellow Frenchman David Guez provided the upset of the day by also rallying from a set down to win over No. 1 seed Konstantin Kravchuk, from Russia, 4-6, 6-3, 6-4.

Day 2 of qualifying at Roland Garros will see a trio of #NextGen stars take the court for their first match on Tuesday, including rising Swedish player Elias Ymer, and Russians Andrey Rublev and Karen Khachanov

Garcia-Lopez Breaks Through In Geneva

Mon, 05/16/2016 - 6:54pm

Guillermo Garcia-Lopez finally broke through against Sam Querrey on Monday at the Banque Eric Sturdza Geneva Open. The Spaniard, who had lost to Querrey in their four previous meetings, all on hard courts and dating back to 2008, beat the American 7-6(5), 6-4 to advance in Switzerland. The 32 year old will face Russian qualifier Evgeny Donskoy or American Rajeev Ram in the second round.

No. 6 seed Federico Delbonis avenged his 2012 loss to Janko Tipsarevic, who made his ATP World Tour season debut. Delbonis saved six of eight break points to advance 6-1, 7-6(6) over the Serb. Tipsarevic had been out with foot and knee injuries and was playing in his first tour-level match since last year's US Open.

Steve Johnson needed one hour and 17 minutes to earn his first clay-court win of the season. Johnson, who had been 0-3 on clay this season, never faced a break point and bypassed Russian Mikhail Youzhny 6-3, 7-5. The American will face another Russian in Andrey Kuznetsov in the second round.

Spain's Inigo Cervantes lost only five points on his first serve (27/32) to beat German qualifier Andreas Beck 6-1, 6-3 and advance to the second round. Cervantes will play compatriot Pablo Carreno Busta, who beat 19-year-old Chilean qualifier Christian Garin 6-2, 7-5. Carreno Busta won all six break points in the one-hour and 15-minute victory.

Sousa Debuts In Nice With Win No. 100

Mon, 05/16/2016 - 4:17pm

No. 5 seed Joao Sousa debuted at the Open de Nice Cote d’Azur with a comeback win on Monday against #NextGen player Quentin Halys of France. The Portuguese, playing at a career-high No. 28 in the Emirates ATP Rankings, won 5-7, 6-4, 6-4 in two hours and 21 minutes against the 19 year old.

Halys, who received a wild card into the main draw, broke Sousa to win the first set, but the Frenchman was broken twice in the second set as Sousa evened their first-round contest. In the third, Sousa broke to go up 2-1 and later served out the set on his first try.

With the successful debut, the 27 year old also celebrated his 100th tour-level win. Sousa is trying to build on his first ATP World Tour Masters 1000 quarter-final earlier this month at the Mutua Madrid Open. He next will play Victor Estrella Burgos, who won a clay-court title earlier this year at the Ecuador Open Quito.

American qualifier Donald Young earned his second win in as many tries against World No. 34 Fabio Fognini, beating the Italian 4-6, 6-3, 6-3. Young, No. 82 in the Emirates ATP Rankings, had won their earlier meeting on hard courts in Vienna in 2012. The 26 year old will face Argentine Guido Pella for the first time in the second round. Pella erased 16 of 18 break points and outlasted Daniil Medvedev 6-1, 6-7(4), 7-6(5).

Diego Schwartzman claimed the battle of 2016 titlists. The TEB BNP Paribas Istanbul Open champion closed out a 7-6(5), 6-1 victory against Fernando Verdasco, who won the BRD Nastase Tiriac Trophy last month in Bucharest. The Argentine moves on to face No. 3 seed Kevin Anderson. The World No. 20 is coming back from injuries and has played just seven matches this season. Anderson prevailed in four sets in their earlier meeting at the 2015 Australian Open.

#NextGen player Taylor Fritz won the first main draw clay-court match of his career. Fritz, No. 72 in the Emirates ATP Rankings, dismissed Illya Marchenko of Ukraine 7-6(4), 6-4. The 18 year old, who is the youngest player in the Top 100, hit eight aces and won nearly 80 per cent of his first-serve points to beat the 28-year-old Marchenko. The American faces No. 2 seed Gilles Simon in the second round for the first time.

Alexander Zverev, another member of the ATP Next Generation, moved into the second round when fellow #NextGen player Kyle Edmund retired after two sets because of a left ankle injury. Edmund took the opener 7-5 but Zverev climbed back to win the second set 7-5. Edmund retired before the third set started.

DAY 3 PREVIEW: There are four first-round and four second-round singles matches on Tuesday’s schedule at the Open de Nice Côte d’Azur, leading off on Centre Court with Marcel Granollers against Brian Baker, who is making his first appearance in Nice since his runner-up in 2012.

In the next match on, Next Generation teenager Hyeon Chung takes on Frenchman Paul-Henri Mathieu for the first time in the main draw on the ATP World Tour. In the third match on, Schwartzman looks to avenge his previous loss to Anderson, who is a wild card entry this week. This is a second-round match. The South African, who celebrates his 30th birthday on Wednesday, last played in Nice in 2010, losing in the final round of qualifying.

In the last second-round match on, Frenchmen Benoit Paire, the No. 4 seed, and Adrian Mannarino square off for the second time this season. In March at the BNP Paribas Open, an ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament, Mannarino won in straight sets. Paire is looking for his first main draw match win in Nice (0-3).

On Court 1, there are four matches, with Jiri Vesely and Leonardo Mayer meeting for the fifth time (Mayer leads 3-1 overall, tied 1-1 on clay). In the next first-round match on, Spaniard Daniel Muñoz de la Nava and No. 7 seed Andreas Seppi meet for the first time on the ATP World Tour. In their previous meeting at the Turin Challenger in 2007, the Spaniard won in three sets.

In the last second-round match on, Sousa and Estrella Burgos meet for the first time on the ATP World Tour. Estrella Burgos won their previous meeting 6-3, 6-2 at the Leon Challenger in 2010.

Thiem FedEx ATP Player Profile 2016

Mon, 05/16/2016 - 3:50pm
Dominic Thiem reveals how his longtime coach convinced him to make a career-altering change.

ATP Stars Celebrate Mothers

Mon, 05/16/2016 - 2:27pm

Often we’ve found that mothers have been the first coach of the ATP World Tour players, whether it is on court or in life. We asked our stars to share some of their favourite memories of their moms, their best advice and much more.

To see what the players have to say, visit the ATP Moms capsule in MyATP. Not a member? Sign-up at MyATP.com or download the app to your iPhone or Android device.

Here’s a sneak peek:

Bob Bryan: “We’ve got a great mom… We were always bickering, yelling and throwing our racquets. We were always fighting with each other. She put up with us and gave us good strokes!” Read More & View Photo

Mike Bryan: “She taught us a good lesson to be good sportsmen on the court, be better people.” Read More & View Photo

Kevin Anderson: "My Mum has been my number one fan since day one, always there and helping me chase my dreams!" Read More & View Photo

Alexander Zverev: “She basically taught me from a little age how to play this sport; what to do on the court, all the technique, and I want to say I have a pretty clean technique. That's all her.” Read More & View Photo

Joao Sousa: “Her only advice was ‘Believe in yourself and you will achieve whatever you set your mind on’.” Read More & View Photo

John Peers: "My mum has been an amazing influence on me!” Read More & View Photo

Vasek Pospisil: "She's my number one fan, she's always sending me text messages before a match." Watch

Aljaz Bedene: “I remember when I broke my leg as a young kid and was thinking to quit playing, she was the one who encouraged me to continue and I am grateful for that.” Read More & View Photo

Bruno Soares:  I always had a feeling that everything I decided to do she would be there for me, doing everything she could do to help me achieve what I was trying to do.” Read More & View Photo

Donald Young: “My mom means so much to me. She does so much for me – from bringing me into this world to teaching me about life, raising me and making me a better person.” Read More & View Photo

Matthew Ebden: “I couldn't possibly ask for a better mother. I always know she loves and supports me no matter what.” Read More & View Photo

Denis Kudla: “The support from my mom growing up and now is incredibly important because without her help taking me to practice everyday, I would of never have had the opportunity to follow my dream.” Read More & View Photo

View the entire ATP Moms capsule on MyATP.