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Zverev Double Hot Shot At Shanghai 2016

Thu, 10/13/2016 - 9:00am
Watch two Hots Shots from Alexander Zverev's racquet during his third-round match on Thursday against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga at the Shanghai Rolex Masters. Watch live tennis at Getty Images photo.

Zverev Caught At Shanghai 2016

Thu, 10/13/2016 - 9:00am
Ouch! That's got to hurt! Alexander Zverev makes use of a line judges chair against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga on Thursday at the Shanghai Rolex Masters. Watch live tennis at Getty Images photo.

Tsonga Denies Zverev For Shanghai QF Spot

Thu, 10/13/2016 - 8:32am
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Ninth seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga denied the Zverev family two quarter-finalists at the Shanghai Rolex Masters as he rallied to defeat the younger of the two, Alexander Zverev, 6-7(4), 6-2, 7-5, in the third round on Thursday.

Mischa Zverev advanced to the last eight with a three-set win over Marcel Granollers, but his younger brother was unable to capitalise on the 4-1 lead in the final set that he held over Tsonga.

As Zverev's frustration mounted, an inspired Tsonga mounted a fightback, winning six of the last seven games to clinch victory in two hours and 27 minutes.

Tsonga is enjoying a successful return from the left knee injury that forced him to retire against Novak Djokovic in the US Open quarter-finals and that kept him out of Metz, Chengdu and Beijing.

The Frenchman is bidding to reach the final of this ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament for the second year in a row, having finished runner-up to Djokovic last year. He goes on to face Roberto Bautista Agut for a spot in the semi-finals.

The 19-year-old Zverev, a star of the ATP's Next Generation, had defeated John Isner and eighth seed Marin Cilic to reach the third round. The German recently won his first ATP World Tour title in St. Petersburg (d. Wawrinka) and is on course for a Top 20 finish in the Emirates ATP Rankings.  

The 15th-seeded Bautista Agut defeated Viktor Troicki 6-3, 6-3 in 74 minutes. On Wednesday, Troicki had stunned Rafael Nadal in the second round, but could not back up his stellar performance against Bautista Agut, whom he now trails 0-3 in their FedEx ATP Head2Head series.

Bautista Agut is a two-time winner on the ATP World Tour this season and is through to the quarter-finals of an ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament for the first time in 2016. The Spaniard has a 2-2 FedEx ATP Head2Head record with Tsonga, winning their past two meetings, which both came this year in Auckland and Miami. 

Tsonga Strikes Back In Shanghai 2016 Hot Shot

Thu, 10/13/2016 - 6:51am
Alexander Zverev appears in control, but Jo-Wilfried Tsonga guesses right and strikes back on Thursday at the Shanghai Rolex Masters. Watch live tennis at Getty Images photo.

One Month To Go Until 2016 Barclays ATP World Tour Finals

Thu, 10/13/2016 - 5:52am

There's just one month to go until the 2016 Barclays ATP World Tour Finals! Don't miss out on an amazing experience. Get Tickets:

Monfils-Goffin Clash Highlights Thursday In Shanghai

Thu, 10/13/2016 - 2:47am

With five players already locking in their spots for the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals, Thursday’s action at the Shanghai Rolex Masters will see sixth seed Gael Monfils and No. 11 seed David Goffin square off in a third-round clash that is crucial for both of their chances to qualify for London for the first time.

Monfils is currently No. 6 in the Emirates ATP Race to London with 3,535 points, while Goffin is No. 11 with 2,465 points. The Frenchman is 665 points ahead of No. 9 Berdych in the Emirates ATP Race to London, while Goffin trails No. 8 Dominic Thiem by 740 points. The winner on Thursday will receive at least 180 Emirates ATP Rankings points for a quarter-final showing. The 90 points hinging on the outcome would be enough for Goffin to overtake Marin Cilic and break into the Top 10 of the race.

Goffin is on a run of form having finished runner-up last week at the Rakuten Japan Open Tennis Championships 2016, while Monfils has posted a 23-4 record since Wimbledon. The Frenchman leads his FedEx ATP Head2Head rivalry over Goffin 1-0, with the lone win coming this summer in the third round of the Rogers Cup. Goffin could rise as high as No. 7 by winning the championship on Sunday. Although the Belgian won his only two ATP World Tour titles more than two years ago at Kitzbühel and Metz in 2014, he will be highly motivated to continue closing the gap as he bids for a spot in London.

A banner year for Alexander and Mischa Zverev has only gotten better at the Shanghai Rolex Masters, where both brothers will be in third-round action. The Zverevs are the first siblings in the Round of 16 of an ATP Masters 1000 event since Olivier and Christophe Rochus at 2006 Miami. Mischa, 29, qualified for his ninth tour-level event of 2016, tying seven other players for the most in a single season since 1990. The German is scheduled to play Stockholm qualifying this weekend should he not beat Marcel Granollers and reach the semi-finals.

Alexander, 19, upset Stan Wawrinka in St. Petersburg last month to become the youngest player and first teenager to win an ATP World Tour title since 2008. With a victory over 2015 Shanghai finalist Jo-Wilfried Tsonga on Thursday, the #NextGen star would reach his first ATP Masters 1000 quarter-final.

Another player seeking his maiden ATP Masters 1000 quarter-final is American Jack Sock, who faces fifth seed Milos Raonic on Union Pay 3. Raonic has won eight straight FedEx ATP Head 2 Head matches against Sock. If he makes it nine, the Canadian will have reached the quarter-finals of all nine ATP Masters 1000s in his career.

Three other men still in the Shanghai draw have already accomplished that feat: Top seed Novak Djokovic, second seed Andy Murray and Monfils. On Thursday, the defending champion Djokovic clashes with Canadian qualifier Vasek Pospisil, who has won back-to-back main draw matches this week for the first time all season. Murray meets Metz champion Lucas Pouille, who would rise to No. 13 in the Emirates ATP Race to London with his sixth Top 10 win of the season.

Seven of the 16 seeds were upset in the first or second round, leaving seven players who’ve reached no more than one ATP Masters 1000 quarter-final respectively: A. Zverev (0 QFs), M. Zverev (2009 Rome QF), Sock (0 QFs), Pospisil (2013 Montréal SF), Pouille (2016 Rome SF), Viktor Troicki (2011 Monte-Carlo QF) and Roberto Bautista Agut (2014 Madrid SF). Troicki and Bautista Agut will play a rematch of their Winston-Salem semi-final, which the Spaniard led by a set and 5-0 before surviving 7-5, 6-7(2), 6-2. Play concludes on Stadium Court with third seed Wawrinka meeting Gilles Simon, who like Pospisil, has lost his last 10 matches against Top 10 opponents. Simon defeated Wawrinka en route to the 2014 Shanghai final, but lost to the Swiss here in 2010.

The doubles quarter-finals begin on Thursday and include 2014 Shanghai champions Bob and Mike Bryan. Shanghai is the lone ATP Masters 1000 event that the Bryans have won only once. Should they capture the title without a walkover this week, the American twins will become the first doubles team to reach 1,000 victories. 

Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares would pass Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut, the No. 1 team in the Emirates ATP Doubles Race to London, by winning their Shanghai quarter-final on Friday. Murray and Soares have yet to play a point after receiving a first-round bye and a second-round walkover. A win in the quarter-finals would also make Soares the 50th World No. 1 in the 40-year history of the Emirates ATP Doubles Rankings. Yesterday’s media notes incorrectly stated that Murray, not Soares, could become World No. 1 this week.

Ugo Carabelli Makes Challenger Debut At Home

Wed, 10/12/2016 - 5:49pm

Camilo Ugo Carabelli had all the local support he could ask for in the biggest match of his young career at this week’s $50,000 ATP Challenger Tour event in Buenos Aires.

The 17-year-old Buenos Aires native made his Challenger main draw debut on Monday against top seed Horacio Zeballos. Although he lost in straight sets, Ugo Carabelli said he relished the chance to compete against a player inside the Top 100 of the Emirates ATP Rankings.

“It was terrific to play my first Challenger in Buenos Aires with my girlfriend, family and school friends in the crowd,” said Ugo Carabelli. “I couldn’t find my rhythm in the beginning, but then I relaxed and began to enjoy the game.”

Ugo Carabelli has focused solely on pro tournaments since May, competing exclusively on the ITF Futures circuit. Although he’s started to enjoy success at those events, he admitted not yet being used to facing established players like Zeballos.

“This was a very good opportunity for me because he has more experience and more speed,” said Ugo Carabelli. “I enjoyed being on the court with ballboys and a large crowd. It’s an environment that I’m not yet used to, so it was a unique experience.”

The teenager has started to serve notice of his talent with Argentina, with some of the best players in the country inviting him to train with them. He’s hopeful that as he continues to surround himself with some of the staple players on the ATP World Tour, his tennis will improve at a more rapid pace.

“I trained with Juan Monaco and Zeballos, which was great. I broke their serves a couple of times, but a live match is something else,” sad Ugo Carabelli. “I hope to be a little more adapted to them within a couple of years.”

Djokovic Falls To ‘Perfect’ Federer In 2014 Shanghai Classic Moment

Wed, 10/12/2016 - 5:27pm
In this Shanghai Classic Moment, Novak Djokovic sees his 28-match winning streak in China end, calling it “a perfect match” for Roger Federer, who wins 6-4, 6-4 in the 2014 semi-finals. Watch live tennis at

#NextGen Escobedo Reflects On Late Season Surge

Wed, 10/12/2016 - 3:17pm

Challenger success can often serve as a defining moment for a player’s career. Just ask American #NextGen star Ernesto Escobedo.

After hard-court results in the first half of 2016 that didn’t meet his high standards, the 20-year-old Californian broke through with his first ATP Challenger Tour title this July in Lexington, Kentucky. The win gave him the USTA Pro Circuit wild card into the US Open and he took advantage by winning his opening round match in New York City, then rode that momentum to his third Challenger final of the season this past month in Cary, North Carolina.

Having started the year at No. 393 in the Emirates ATP Rankings, Escobedo now sits at a career-high ranking of No. 160.

“I had never won a pro final before, so I felt a little bit of pressure going into that match in Lexington,” said Escobedo. “But at the same time, I was playing a really good friend in Frances Tiafoe and I just wanted to show the crowd my best tennis. I gained so much confidence from that win. It really turned my whole year around. I know that I can play at this level of tennis.”

Watch Free Challenger Live Streaming

Competing at this week’s $100,000 Challenger in Monterrey, Mexico, Escobedo looks to win the biggest title of his career. He shook off a mid-match surge from qualifier Tucker Vorster of South Africa to advance in his opening round on Tuesday.

Escobedo is one of a slew of young American stars who have enjoyed Challenger success in the past month including Tiafoe, Michael Mmoh, Mackenzie McDonald and fellow #NextGen player Noah Rubin. But while they all want to reach the top of the Emirates ATP Rankings, they’ve also spurred each other on to greater heights this year.

“We have a great relationship. Tiafoe, Mmoh, Taylor Fritz, you name it. We all have fun off the court,” said Escobedo. “But on the court, there are no friends. You have to go out there and try to win.”

Having reached the semi-finals last year in Monterrey, Escobedo said he’s extremely comfortable in the Mexican city and has everything in place to make another deep run.

“I think this is the best tournament out there,” said Escobedo. “I love being in Mexico and come to play here any chance I can get.”

Murray Wawrinka Raonic Highlights Shanghai 2016

Wed, 10/12/2016 - 3:04pm
Watch highlights as Andy Murray, Stan Wawrinka, Milos Raonic and Rafael Nadal were all in action on Wednesday at the Shanghai Rolex Masters. Watch live tennis at Getty Images photo.

Nadal: 'I Need To Create Pain'

Wed, 10/12/2016 - 2:27pm

Rafael Nadal, renowned from his ferocious game and battling qualities, says that he will look to restore his sledgehammer forehand in order to return to top form on the ATP World Tour.

Following his opening-round exit to Viktor Troicki on Wednesday at the Shanghai Rolex Masters, the former World No. 1 admitted, “I need to recover the forehand. I know I need to hit forehands. Every time that I hit the forehand, I need to create pain for my opponent.

“It is something that is not happening very often now, and it’s something that needs to happen for the next year… If that happens, then, for sure, I need to recover a little bit the electricity in my legs. I need to move faster to hit more forehands. But I need to be more confident with the forehand to make that happen. Everything is a cycle. I need to do the things together.”

The 30-year-old Nadal, who has suffered wrist problems this year, dropped to a 39-14 match record (15-6 at ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournaments).

“I need to play my matches, to practise more and just to keep playing,” said Nadal. “I know what I have to do and I am going do it. I have two-and-a-half months until the new season starts, so I have two-and-a-half months to put myself at the level that I need to be. I have the confidence that I'm going do it.”

The Spaniard is looking to qualify for the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals for the 12th successive year. He is currently No. 7 in the Emirates ATP Race To London with just three spots left up for grabs at the season finale, to be held at The O2 in London from 13-20 November.

Murray Marches Into Shanghai 3R

Wed, 10/12/2016 - 1:28pm

Andy Murray had little trouble taking his seventh consecutive tour-level victory on Wednesday at the Shanghai Rolex Masters. The second seed needed 75 minutes to beat Steve Johnson 6-3, 6-2 and improve his FedEx ATP Head2Head record against Johnson to 3-0.

The American had forced Murray to pull out a third-set tie-break the last time they played, at the Rio Olympics. But Murray was on from the start of their second-round match in Shanghai. The Brit saved the only break point he faced in the first set and never gave Johnson a look at another one. The two-time Shanghai champion also feasted on Johnson's second serve, winning 70 per cent of his second-serve return points (14/20).

“I felt like I was creating a lot of chances on his serve. I thought I moved well for the first match in new conditions,” said Murray, who received a first-round bye. “I was timing the ball well. I felt like I was controlling a lot of the rallies. Yeah, for a first match after playing pretty different conditions a few days ago, it was good.”

Murray moves into the third round of the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament, where he'll face Frenchman Lucas Pouille for the second time. The Brit claimed their earlier contest, 6-2, 6-1 win at Rome. “I don't think he played particularly well that day. But it was a good match for me. Hopefully I can play well tomorrow,” Murray said.

Pouille survived a tight second-round affair against unseeded Nicolas Almagro, needing 90 minutes to beat the Spaniard 6-4, 7-6(10). Pouille, the 13th seed, won 75 per cent of his service points, including 66 per cent of his second-serve points.

Fifteenth seed Roberto Bautista Agut advanced 6-4, 6-4 against American qualifier Taylor Fritz, a member of the ATP Next Generation. Both players didn't give any breaks away. Bautista Agut saved all seven break points faced; Fritz erased eight of 10.

The Spaniard will meet Serbian Viktor Troicki in the third round. Troicki stunned Rafael Nadal 6-3, 7-6(3).


Murray The Athlete In Shanghai 2016 Hot Shot

Wed, 10/12/2016 - 1:23pm
Watch Hot Shot as Andy Murray showcases the great athlete he is against Steve Johnson on Wednesday at the Shanghai Rolex Masters. Watch live tennis at Photo: Getty Images

Dimitrov Tends To Injured Ball Boy Shanghai 2016

Wed, 10/12/2016 - 12:40pm
Grigor Dimitrov gives his wristband to an injured ball boy at the Shanghai Rolex Masters. Watch live tennis at

Bryans Serve Into Shanghai QFs

Wed, 10/12/2016 - 10:52am

Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan advanced to the quarter-finals with clutch serving on Wednesday at the Shanghai Rolex Masters. The Americans saved four of five break points and won 74 per cent of their service points in the 6-1, 7-6(3) victory against Marcin Matkowski and Jean-Julien Rojer.

The 38-year-old twins, who won the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament in 2014, will meet Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Nenad Zimonjic in the quarter-finals. The Frenchman/Serbian pairing denied fifth seeds Raven Klaasen and Rajeev Ram 6-4, 6-2 in 61 minutes.

Before Wednesday's matches, Klaasen/Ram were in sixth place in the Emirates ATP Doubles Race To London. The South African/American duo has never qualified for the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals, to be held 13-20 Nov. at The O2 in London. The top eight doubles teams qualify for the year-end championships.


Croatians Mate Pavic and Marin Cilic came back from a set down to knock out sixth seeds Rohan Bopanna and Daniel Nestor 5-7, 6-4, 10-8. The teams were tied at eight-all in the Match Tie-break before the Croatians swept the final two points to move into the quarter-finals.

Henri Kontinen and John Peers improved their Emirates ATP Doubles Race To London status with ease, advancing 6-2, 6-3 against Germans Philipp Petzschner and #NextGen star Alexander Zverev.

Before Wednesday's play, Kontinen/Peers were in eighth place in the Emirates ATP Doubles Race To London, with Rojer/Horia Tecau only 30 points behind them in ninth place. Kontinen/Peers will face Robert Lindstedt and Vasek Pospisil in the second round.

Troicki Stuns Nadal; Pospisil Sets Djokovic Clash

Wed, 10/12/2016 - 10:44am

Viktor Troicki claimed one of his biggest wins of the season on Wednesday as he defeated Rafael Nadal 6-3, 7-6(3) in the second round of the Shanghai Rolex Masters.

The Serbian had never beaten Nadal in five previous attempts, but pulled off the upset as he held his nerve for victory in one hour and 34 minutes.

"I played really well," said Troicki. "I was aggressive, I served well, I hit the ball nice. 

"It was a great feeling on the court playing like this and playing like this against Rafa Nadal, who is a great champion. It makes it extra special to beat him for the first time, especially in such a big tournament like Shanghai.

"I'm really glad how I played. Happy how I played. I hope I will continue to do that in the next rounds."

Defeat for Nadal put his bid to qualify for the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals on hold. The Spaniard is currently seventh in the Emirates ATP Race To London, although defeats for No. 9 Tomas Berdych and No. 10 Marin Cilic also in the second round take the heat off.

Nadal threw everything at Troicki to stay in the match, but ultimately the Serbian’s bravery to go for the big shots paid dividends. The Serbian broke twice to seal the opener before Nadal came back strongly in the second set. The Spaniard saved a match point on his own serve in the 10th game with superb defence to retrieve a rifling Troicki forehand. But in the ensuing tie-break, Troicki was always in command and clinched victory with a backhand return winner.

Troicki has a 31-25 match record on the season, highlighted by winning his third ATP World Tour title in Sydney (d. Dimitrov) and finishing runner-up in Sofia (l. to Bautista Agut). 

Vasek Pospisil earned a third-round meeting with World No. 1 Novak Djokovic after claiming back-to-back tour-level match wins for the first time this season. The Canadian defeated Grigor Dimitrov 7-5, 7-6(2).

Pospisil is searching for a return to top form, having entered this week with just eight tour-level wins to his name in 2016. But the former Top 25 player has come through qualifying at this ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament, defeating Ivo Karlovic in the first round before upsetting last week's Beijing runner-up Dimitrov.


Overturning a 0-3 FedEx ATP Head2Head record against Dimitrov, Pospisil prevailed in one hour and 43 minutes. The right-hander relinquished an early break advantage in the first set, but a service break in the 12th game earned him the opener. After saving a break point in the seventh game of the second set, he then dominated the tie-break to seal victory.

"I played very well," said Pospisil. "It was important to play a very clean match today, because Grigor is playing with a lot of confidence right now. It was a great win for me.

"It's been a tough year. Quite a few things were going on. But I feel really happy to be back. I feel like my old self on the court again. My head's in the game and I'm playing well."

Pospisil will look for his first win in four FedEx ATP Head2Head meetings when he faces Djokovic on Thursday.

Qualifier Mischa Zverev will play Marcel Granollers for a spot in the quarter-finals after defeating Nick Kyrgios 6-3, 6-1. The 29-year-old German, older brother of Alexander Zverev, is close to a return to the Top 100 after starting the season at No. 171 in the Emirates ATP Rankings. Two weeks ago, he reached the quarter-finals in Shenzhen (l. to Gasquet).

Klaasen & Ram Uncovered

Wed, 10/12/2016 - 9:53am
Meet the top doubles duo of Raven Klaasen and Rajeev Ram, who look set for a spot at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in their first season together.

Lopez Gets Out Of Trouble In Shanghai 2016 Hot Shot

Wed, 10/12/2016 - 9:46am
Watch Hot Shot as Feliciano Lopez gets out of trouble, having been in control against Jack Sock on Wednesday at the Shanghai Rolex Masters.

Nishikori Qualifies For 2016 Barclays ATP World Tour Finals

Wed, 10/12/2016 - 8:58am

Kei Nishikori will make his third successive appearance at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals after becoming the fifth player to qualify for the prestigious season-ending tournament, to be held from 13-20 November at The O2 in London.

The Japanese star sealed his berth at The O2 following results at the Shanghai Rolex Masters. He joins Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray, Stan Wawrinka and Milos Raonic. Nishikori reached the semi-finals on his debut at The O2 in 2014, falling to Djokovic, and returned as one of the elite eight last year.

“I am very excited to come back to London this year,” said Nishikori. “It’s been a very consistent year so far and I am excited to be part of this elite group again. Last year the atmosphere in London was incredible and I look forward to seeing a lot of Japanese support in the crowd again this year.”

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The 26-year-old Nishikori has put together a 52-16 match record during 2016. The right-hander was a quarter-finalist at the Australian Open in January (l. to Djokovic) and in his next tournament captured his 11th ATP World Tour title at the Memphis Open (d. Fritz). He reached another two finals at the Sony Open in Miami (l. to Djokovic) and the Barcelona Open BancSabadell (l. to Nadal) and continued his good run on the clay with semi-finals at the Mutua Madrid Open and the Internazionali BNL d'Italia in Rome (l. to Djokovic both times).

Nishikori reached his second ATP World Tour Masters 1000 final of the year at the Rogers Cup in Toronto, falling to Djokovic, before going on a run to the US Open semi-finals, where he defeated Murray in the quarter-finals before losing to eventual champion Wawrinka.

The Barclays ATP World Tour Finals has welcomed more than 1.8 million fans to The O2 arena over the past seven years, establishing itself as the biggest indoor tennis tournament in the world since moving to London in 2009. A record 102 million broadcast viewers also tuned in across the eight days of competition in 2015. The ATP announced last year that the event would remain at The O2 through to 2018. The tournament’s partnership with the Lawn Tennis Association and the All England Club has also been extended for the same period. Tickets can be purchased at:  

Kyrgios Reflects On Game Development At Shanghai 2016

Wed, 10/12/2016 - 8:51am
#NextGen star Nick Kyrgios reflect on his recent Tokyo title and developments in his game. Watch live tennis at Photo: Getty Images