Headline News - powered by FeedBurner
Updated: 10 min 22 sec ago
The drama. The intensity. Watch our 2016 Barclays ATP World Tour Finals singles show opener, shown on Centre Court at The O2 ahead of each clash.
Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares react to beating Ivan Dodig and Marcelo Melo on Thursday night to reach the semi-finals of the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals.
Milos Raonic qualified for the semi-finals of the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals, at The O2 in London, in second place from Group Ivan Lendl on Thursday night. The fourth seed ended the campaign of eighth seed and first-time qualifier Dominic Thiem 7-6(5), 6-3 to win their second meeting of the season (also Cincinnati), and improved to a 2-1 record in round-robin play.
Both players started in confident fashion – with Raonic hitting 10 winners and losing just two of his service points through his first three service games. There were no break points through to the tie-break. Raonic opened up a 2/0 lead, then lost four straight points as Thiem exploited the Canadian’s weaker backhand wing. But Raonic recovered, striking a smash winner for a 6/4 lead. On his second set point opportunity he hit his 11th ace to clinch the 53-minute opener. He’d hit 22 winners and won all but two of his first service points (21/23).
Raonic continued his march to a 52nd match win of 2016 by breaking Thiem to 15, when the Austrian struck a backhand wide, in the first game of the second set. At 0-2, Thiem recovered from 15/40 by keeping Raonic on the move to remain in contention. But Raonic maintained his advantage, and, in choosing the right times to attack, with Thiem off-balance, created two match-point opportunities when leading 5-3. Thiem ended the 90-minute encounter with a backhand into the net.
Earlier in the day, with victory over alternate David Goffin, Novak Djokovic won Group Ivan Lendl and qualified for the semi-finals with a perfect 3-0 record. Raonic will now play the first-placed qualifier of Group John McEnroe in Saturday’s semi-finals.
Raonic, with a 2-1 record at the finale this year, is now 52-16 on the season. He won 91 per cent of his first-service points, while Thiem ended his year with four trophies and a 58-24 match mark.
David Goffin exclusively previews the must-win singles match between Milos Raonic and Dominic Thiem, with the winner advancing to the semi-finals at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals.
John McEnroe discusses the battle for year-end No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Rankings, the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in London and his favourite memories from past season finales. Watch live tennis at tennistv.com.
Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares have clinched a Barclays ATP World Tour Finals semi-finals berth and boosted their chances of finishing as year-end No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Doubles Team Rankings after the second seeds defeated Ivan Dodig and Marcelo Melo 6-3, 3-6, 10-6 on Thursday at The O2 arena.
Murray/Soares completed their Group Edberg/Jarryd campaign with a maximum three victories and can still overtake Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut as the World No. 1 pairing, depending on the outcome of the Frenchmen's final round-robin match on Friday.
Herbert/Mahut, who will not qualify for the final four, must prevail in their final Group Fleming/McEnroe contest with Henri Kontinen and John Peers, otherwise the prestigious year-end top spot is in the hands of Murray/Soares.
Soares could also be celebrating as the individual No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Doubles Rankings. Mahut needs one victory in London to end the year as individual No. 1 but should he lose Friday, then Soares can head top, only if he and Murray lift the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals doubles trophy on Sunday.
Dodig’s perfectly curated lob clipped the right tramline in the opening game, but Murray managed to hold with a heavy first serve in the deciding deuce point. Murray/Soares capitalised on two double faults to canvass the net and break Melo for a 3-1 lead. Crisp volleying and dominant serving kept them ahead to close out a comprehensive opener, a set which guaranteed them a ticket to play in the semi-finals.
But Dodig/Melo, playing in their final tournament as partners, built momentum on their own service games. Melo held to love for 4-3 and then the 2014 runners-up at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals forced the second seeds into uncharacteristic errors to level the match. Murray/Soares regrouped and struck 100 per cent first serves in the match tie-break to command the points and edge to victory.
Heading into the semi-finals, the British-Brazilian duo will hope to cap their successful 2016 season in style. They have already accumulated 41 match wins this year, including the Apia International Sydney, Australian Open and US Open titles.
Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah look ahead to the decisive doubles match between Jamie Murray / Bruno Soares and Ivan Dodig / Marcelo Melo at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals.
Novak Djokovic says his match against David Goffin was his best performance at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals. Watch live tennis at tennistv.com.
In one of the last Challengers of the year, Bradley Klahn is turning heads in his first tournament back after nearly two years away.
The 26-year-old American returned to men’s professional tennis this week at the $50,000 Challenger in Champaign, Illinois. Klahn had been sidelined for 21 months after undergoing back surgery, but fans wouldn’t be able to tell based on his level of play. After receiving a wild card into qualifying, he advanced into the main draw and defeated Tennys Sandgren on Wednesday for a place in the quarter-finals.
“There were definitely times that I didn’t think I’d be able to compete again,” admitted Klahn. “It’s definitely exciting and refreshing just to be out here playing a tournament and seeing all the guys again.”
Klahn broke into the Top 100 at the end of 2013 after an outstanding Challenger season that saw him win two titles and finish runner-up in three other events. The American won three more Challenger titles in 2014, but struggled with injuries for much of the year. Klahn competed for just two months in 2015 before making the tough call to undergo back surgery.
He experienced frustrating setbacks in his recovery that made him contemplate whether he would even be able to resume his playing career. Klahn even began to give serious consideration to life away from professional tennis and served as a volunteer assistant coach for the men’s tennis team at Stanford University, his alma mater where he won the 2010 NCAA men’s singles championship.
“There was a lot of fear with my back around re-injuring it again. I already had two surgeries and was conscious about that, plus I had concerns about how it would set me up for life after tennis,” said Klahn. “I didn’t want to be in pain for the rest of my life. Even when I was trying to come back, I tried to put things in perspective and also set myself up for what I might want to do after my playing career.”
But after extensive work with his physical therapist, the pair found a recovery plan that worked for Klahn. He eventually resumed full practices after nearly a year of being unable to do so and now finds himself back to winning ways in Champaign.
Although he aims to get back into the Top 100 of the Emirates ATP Rankings, Klahn is determined to enjoy the process more this time around.
“I feel good on court and more comfortable on court with each match. This is more about getting my feet wet again, just staying mentally engaged and calm with each match,” said Klahn. “I know that it’s not going to be pretty at moments and there are times when I’ll be kicking myself mentally, but understand that it’s part of the process.”
“Knowing how quickly tennis can be taken away from you puts it into perspective. It’s definitely a pleasure to be back,” he added. “I’m making sure that I understand how far I am in my recovery process and how lucky I am to be doing this.”
Defending champion Novak Djokovic remains unbeaten at the 2016 Barclays ATP World Tour Finals. Here are the highlights as the Serbian navigates past David Goffin in London. Watch live tennis at tennistv.com.
Novak Djokovic firmly kept the pressure on Andy Murray in the battle for year-end No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Rankings on Thursday. The Serbian dominated David Goffin during their Barclays ATP World Tour Finals round-robin match, beating the Belgian 6-1, 6-2 in 70 minutes.
Djokovic, the second seed in London, improved to 3-0 in Group Ivan Lendl and clinched his fifth consecutive semi-final appearance in London. The four-time defending champion now awaits the second-place finisher in Group John McEnroe, which could be Murray, Stan Wawrinka or Kei Nishikori. Wawrinka and Murray face off on Friday afternoon, and Nishikori will meet Cilic during Friday's evening session.
“I'm very glad that my game is going in the right direction. Today I felt the most comfortable, definitely, so far in the tournament. I'm looking forward to the semi-finals on Saturday,” Djokovic said.
On paper Murray is 205 points ahead of Djokovic, but the Scot will see the 275 points he earned in the 2015 Davis Cup final fall from his points total on 28 November, the day the year-end rankings are calculated. So, that effectively leaves Murray, who has played one less match in London than Djokovic, 70 points behind the Serbian at the conclusion of Thursday’s day session.
But if Murray beats Wawrinka for the 10th time during their 17th FedEx ATP Head2Head meeting, Murray will again lead Djokovic by 130 points.
Djokovic, who's going for his sixth finale title, is trying to finish No. 1 for the third consecutive year and for the fifth time overall, and he looked primed to continue challenging Murray on Thursday. The 29 year old saved the only break point he faced and broke Goffin four times. The Belgrade native also lost only six points on his first serve (29/35).
He and Goffin had endured close matches in the past, including a three-set contest in Cincinnati last season and a 7-6(5), 6-4 Djokovic win earlier this year at the Miami Open presented by Itau. But the Serbian was in top form at The O2 against Goffin, who was an alternate at the finale and stepped in for Gael Monfils, who withdrew because of a rib injury.
“It was a great experience to be here, just to feel the atmosphere, to feel how it is... Even if I didn't play well today, I just played a match in front of the crowd against Novak, it's always a good experience,” Goffin said. “It was nice to be part, a little bit, of this tournament. It gives you a lot of motivation for next year. I will try to be part of the tournament, in the Top 8. We will see next year, but I will try to do my best.”
The Serbian took the action to the finale debutant throughout the match, stepping into the court confidently and winning 7/11 of his net points. In doing so, Djokovic became the fifth player in Barclays ATP World Tour Finals history (since 1970) to win 30 matches at the season-ending championships. The other four players are Roger Federer (52), Ivan Lendl (39), Boris Becker (36) and Pete Sampras (35).
“Everything has been going, as I said, in a positive direction. I've been playing better and better as I proceed in the tournament. I have now a day of rest,” Djokovic said. “I'm looking forward really. It's the last couple matches of the year hopefully. One thing is for sure: I'm going to give it my all on the court and see what happens.”
Watch Jamie Murray take a break from his pursuit of the year-end No. 1 spot in the Emirates ATP Doubles Team Rankings with a quick journey around the local area of The O2 arena in London.
Barclays ATP World Tour Finals debutant David Goffin prevails in a pulsating point against defending champion Novak Djokovic having struck this Hot Shot. Watch live matches at TennisTV.com.
The stakes were high but who had the nerve and accuracy to succeed in the 'Gong Challenge'? Andy Murray headlined a host of singles and doubles players taking part.
Watch highlights of Mike Bryan/Bob Bryan beating Treat Huey/Max Mirnyi at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals on Thursday. Watch live tennis at tennistv.com. Getty Images photo.
See how the battle for year-end No. 1 stands between Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic stands going into Thursday's action at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals.
The Bryans’ straight-sets win over Huey/Mirnyi means that Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares will also qualify from the Group Edberg/Jarryd if they win seven games (or eight if one set goes to a tie-break) against Ivan Dodig and Marcelo Melo tonight. Final positions within the group will be determined by the match score tonight.
Four-time season-finale champions Bryan/Bryan held a 2-0 record in their FedEx ATP Head2Head series against Huey/Mirnyi and got off to the perfect start at The O2 arena. Mike Bryan deflected a piercing backhand return winner to launch a break to love for 2-1 on Mirnyi’s serve.
The Californian twins, who have clinched three ATP World Tour titles in 2016, maintained that advantage and dropped just two points on serve to close out the emphatic opener.
Huey/Mirnyi put up stern resistance in the second set but the World No. 3 duo saved a trio of break points to halt any comeback. At 3-3 a series of acute volleys from Bob Bryan earned the telling break as the siblings closed out their 37th win in Barclays ATP World Tour Finals action.
The straight-sets scoreline sends the Bryans to 48-21 for the 2016 campaign as they target a stellar end to the season in London by going for a 113th ATP World Tour title.
How will alternate David Goffin fare on his debut at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals against Novak Djokovic?
Watch highlights as Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares move to 3-0 at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals with a win on Thursday over Ivan Dodig and Marcelo Melo. Watch live matches at TennisTV.com. Photo: Peter Staples / ATP World Tour
Throughout my 16-year career, I've played in hundreds of tennis stadiums. I've slid on the grass on Centre Court at the All-England Club. I've gazed at the Mediterranean Sea from the red clay of the Monte-Carlo Country Club. In Indian Wells, I've lost track of time staring at the Palm Desert mountains while in town for the BNP Paribas Open.
But nowhere, including the many indoor tournaments we play annually, prepared me for playing at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals. To put it simply, everything is different at The O2.
Let's start with the lights. For about 10 months of the year, we play our matches outside. Sometimes the sun blocks your vision of your ball toss. Other days, clouds shield the sky and you play under overcast skies.
But at The O2, we have plenty of light, and it's all on you. Maybe it's this way because of the many concerts the venue hosts, but, during play, the arena can feel like a theatre. The lights – the very bright lights – are on us, the performers, and the bulbs on the crowd stay dimmed.
This is a good thing, too. It's so much easier to see the ball inside The O2 than anywhere else on the ATP World Tour. The theatre analogy works to describe the tennis crowd in London as well. Most crowds are respectful, maybe cheering at climax moments – tie-breaks or whenever Andy Murray steps within 50 metres – but the majority of the time, London tennis fans watch attentively and cheer when appropriate.
The lights also shine on you when you walk onto the court during one of our sport's most special on-court introductions. The videos on the jumbo-tron before the match, the public announcer shouting your name before you walk through the tunnel. It's a show that happens to take place before a tennis match, and I'm enjoying every moment of it. Even the most basic part of our game – the sound of the ball hitting the racquet – hits your ear differently because of the acoustics of The O2.
I'm 35 years old – 200 in tennis years – and when you've played professional tennis for as many years as I have, you start to think you're used to everything. You think you've seen all the big crowds, played under the brightest lights and in our sport's biggest stadiums.
But then you make your debut appearance at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals, and you get to experience something entirely new.
Feliciano Lopez spoke with Jonathon Braden