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Tiafoe Discusses Victory Over Zverev Cincinnati 2017

Wed, 08/16/2017 - 8:59am
#NextGenATP star Frances Tiafoe discusses the biggest win of his career after his victory over fellow #NextGenATP star Alexander Zverev on Wednesday. Watch live matches at tennistv.com.

Broady Bounces Back With Fresh Focus

Wed, 08/16/2017 - 7:08am

Expectations are high when a young prospect makes Junior Grand Slam finals. Those expectations are only amplified when said prospect is from a nation with as rich a tennis history as Great Britain.

For Liam Broady, a run to the second round at Wimbledon in 2015 catapulted him to a career-best No. 158 in the Emirates ATP Rankings. It came after reaching his first ATP Challenger Tour final in the preceding November where he had fallen to James Duckworth in Charlottesville.

Progress since his been jittery at best and the 23 year old Stockport native is the first to admit it. But a first Challenger final in three years in Aptos, California, on Sunday, went a long way to restoring belief that a revitalised focus was reaping rewards.

Broady went down in straight sets to Kazakhstan’s Alexander Bublik in the final. It was an impressive run, though, having won through qualifying to get there.

“I’ve always believed that I’m capable of competing and living with these guys. It’s telling me my work’s paying off and I’m back,” Broady told USTA Pro Circuit broadcaster Mike Cation. “I’ve been here before. I was probably overwhelmed the first time around but I feel comfortable with these guys and ... it’s just showing people what I can do.”

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Broady strung together seven straight match wins for the loss of just one set en route to the decider. Better still, the surprise run shot his Emirates ATP Ranking up 80 spots to No. 256, which meant he could avoid having to play Futures events and coming through Challengers qualifying.

“I was actually going to play a $25,000 [Futures event] in Illinois this week. Dave said ‘Do you want to play qualies in Aptos because it’s looking so strong or do you want to play a 25 in Illinois?’,” Broady said. “I said ‘Dave, look, I’m not sure I’m going to be able to carry on playing tennis if I go to a Futures in Illinois on my own when I know Aptos is going on because it’s one of the best tournaments that I play’ so he said ‘OK, I trust you to go play it’. I think the tennis gods responded and gave me a final out of this.”

The Brit admitted to frustrations as he made the transition from juniors to the professional ranks. His ranking was not rising anywhere near the rate he wanted it to, or as fast as the British public expected it to given his standout results, which took him as high as No. 2 in the junior world rankings.

“I’ve always felt pressured to get there as quick as I can, especially seeing my peers getting there so fast and kids younger than me now like Zverev, Kyrgios even Shapovalov,” Broady said. “I was playing Shapovalov a couple of months ago on the Challengers and it put such pressure on me not seeing my ranking going up as quick as those guys.

“But one of the big things for me over the last year or so is learning everyone’s path is different. Everybody gets to where they want to get to at different times. You can’t rush that. I think that’s one of the things that’s kind of matured in me.” 

Tiafoe Double Trouble Hot Shot Cincinnati 2017

Wed, 08/16/2017 - 5:26am
Watch Hot Shot as #NextGenATP star Frances Tiafoe fires two impressive passes just out of reach of Alexander Zverev. Watch live matches at tennistv.com. Photo: Peter Staples

Kyrgios Fires Thunderbolt In Cincinnati 2017 Hot Shot

Wed, 08/16/2017 - 4:45am
Watch Hot Shot as Nick Kyrgios blocks in defence before coming up with a thunderbolt winner against Alexandr Dolgopolov on Wednesday at the Western & Southern Open. Watch live matches at tennistv.com. Photo: Getty Images

Highlights Karlovic Upsets Eighth Seed Tsonga Cincinnati 2017 Tuesday

Tue, 08/15/2017 - 11:54pm
Watch highlights as Ivo Karlovic upsets eigth-seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. Dominic Thiem, Nick Kyrgios, and Juan Martin del Potro also advance Tuesday in Cincinnati. Watch live matches at tennistv.com. Photo: Peter Staples

What you should know about rising stars of men's tennis

Tue, 08/15/2017 - 5:38pm
What you should know about rising stars of men's tennis

Federer latest to pull out of Cincinnati event

Mon, 08/14/2017 - 1:08pm
Federer latest to pull out of Cincinnati event

Nadal Certain To Return To No. 1

Mon, 08/14/2017 - 12:30pm

Rafael Nadal is guaranteed to return to No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Rankings Monday 21 August, capping his incredible comeback season in 2017. Nadal ended his 2016 season early due to injury but returned to the ATP World Tour in 2017 playing some of the best tennis of his career.

Nadal, 31, has won four tournaments this year, including historic 10th titles at Roland Garros, Monte-Carlo and Barcelona. He has also reached three other finals, including the Australian Open and Miami.

Nadal has spent 141 weeks at the top spot but hasn't been No. 1 since 6 July 2014.

He first ascended to No. 1 on 18 August, 2008 at the age of 22. The Spaniard is the top seed this week at the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati. Nadal's return to No. 1 was guaranteed today when Roger Federer was forced to withdraw from Cincinnati due to a back injury.

Federer Withdraws From Cincinnati

Mon, 08/14/2017 - 11:52am

Roger Federer has withdrawn from the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati. The seven-time champion said on Monday that a back injury will force him to miss the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament this week.

“I am very sorry to pull out of the Western & Southern Open as I always enjoy playing here,” Federer said. “Cincinnati has some of the best fans in the world and I am sorry I will miss them. Unfortunately, I tweaked my back in Montreal and I need to rest this week.”

Federer fell in the Coupe Rogers final to Alexander Zverev, the first title match the Swiss has lost this season (5-1 record). His withdrawal guarantees Rafael Nadal will return to No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Rankings when the new rankings are released on Monday 21 August. Nadal has spent 141 weeks at the top spot but hasn't been No. 1 since 6 July 2014.

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Shapovalov Soars 76 Spots, Mover Of Week

Mon, 08/14/2017 - 3:38am

No. 67 Denis Shapovalov, +76
Shapovalov began the year at No. 250 in the Emirates ATP Rankings. Today, after reaching the Coupe Roger semi-finals, he broke into the Top 100 at No. 67. The 18-year-old lefty knocked out established players all week, including Juan Martin del Potro, Rafael Nadal and Adrian Mannarino. The #NextGenATP Canadian is in good position to make the Next Gen ATP Finals in Milan, to be held 7-11 November. By becoming the youngest ATP World Tour Masters 1000 semi-finalist (since 1990), Shapovalov rose to fourth place in the Emirates ATP Race to Milan, which will determine seven of the eight 21-and-under players who compete at the inaugural tournament.

No. 7 Alexander Zverev, +1
Zverev may be #NextGenATP, but he’s very much the present. In lifting his fifth trophy of the year – and sixth title overall – at the Coupe Rogers, the 20-year-old German rose one spot to a career-high No. 7. He claimed a second consecutive ATP World Tour Masters 1000 title (also Internazionali BNL d'Italia in Rome), becoming the first player outside the ‘Big Four’ to win multiple Masters 1000 crowns in the same season since David Nalbandian 10 years ago. Zverev, the leader of the Emirates ATP Race To Milan, became the first player to qualify for the Next Gen ATP Finals as a result of reaching the Montreal title match. Buy Tickets

View Latest Emirates ATP Rankings

No. 27 Kevin Anderson, +5
The amiable South African is getting back to where he wants to be, determined and focused after a long road back from injury. Having reached the Citi Open final in Washington, D.C. (l. to Zverev) last week, Anderson made a run to the Montreal quarter-finals, where he lost to the same player. In moving up five positions to No. 27, Anderson returns to the Top 30 for the first time since 22 August 2016. He spent one week as a member of the Top 10, at No. 10, on 12 October 2015.

No. 35 Robin Haase, +17
The star of many a players’ party at the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters, where he reached the 2012 quarter-finals during a career-best year, is now two spots off his career-high (No. 33 on 30 July 2012). Haase advanced to his first semi-final at the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 level in Montreal, where he lost to Roger Federer. At the age of 30, the Dutchman’s belief is growing and his hard work is paying off.

No. 49 Hyeon Chung, +7
The South Korean began 2017 at No. 104 in the Emirates ATP Rankings and this week makes his Top 50 debut at No. 49 having beaten Feliciano Lopez and David Goffin en route to the Montreal third round (l. to Mannarino). The #NextGenATP is also No. 7 in the Emirates ATP Race To Milan.

Other Top 100 Movers This Week
No. 50 Borna Coric, +5
No. 60 Jared Donaldson, +6
No. 61 Yen-Hsun Lu, +9
No. 63 Pierre-Hugues Herbert, +6
No. 70 Dudi Sela, +7
No. 76 Ernesto Escobedo, +9
No. 81 Norbert Gombos, +7
No. 85 Thomas Fabbiano, +6
No. 93 Mikhail Youzhny, +5
No. 99 Sergiy Stakhovsky, +16

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Querrey, Monfils Feature In Cincinnati On Monday

Mon, 08/14/2017 - 3:10am

View FedEx ATP Head2Head matchups for Day 2 of the Western & Southern Open and vote for who you think will win!
Querrey vs. Kozlov | M. Zverev vs. Verdasco | Lopez vs. Chung

[GROUP POLL]62[/GROUP POLL]

View Daily Schedule

1) Six Americans, led by World No. 20 Sam Querrey and #NextGenATP wild cards Stefan Kozlov and Tommy Paul, take the court for their opening-round matches Monday at the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati.

2) Querrey, the No. 15 seed, begins his bid for a third ATP World Tour title this year and second of the summer hard-court swing when he meets the 19-year-old Kozlov on Center Court Monday afternoon. Last year, Querrey defeated Kozlov in the QF at 's-Hertogenbosch on grass in their only previous meeting on the ATP World Tour. This will be Querrey's 11th appearance in Cincinnati, reaching the QF in 2007 (l. to Blake) for his best performance here, and is 10-10 lifetime. He swept all nine of his matches in Mexico this year, capturing his 9th and 10th career ATP World Tour titles at Acapulco (d. Nadal) and Los Cabos (d. Kokkinakis), respectively. Last week, Querrey lost to Kevin Anderson in the R16 at ATP Masters 1000 Montreal. Kozlov, ranked No. 133 in the Emirates ATP Rankings, is making his main draw debut in Cincinnati after failing to get out of qualifying in 2015-16. He advanced to the R16 at ’s-Hertogenbosch as a wild card (d. Brown, l. to Karlovic) and London/Queen’s Club as a qualifier (d. Johnson, l. to Cilic), but is just 2-8 overall on the ATP World Tour in 2017.

3) American qualifier Christopher Eubanks, coming off a career week in his home city of Atlanta last month, meets Frenchman Gael Monfils for the first time in the featured evening match on Center Court. The 21-year-old Eubanks advanced to the QF in Atlanta (d. Fritz in R32, Donaldson in R16, l. to Harrison in QF) in his first ATP World Tour event of 2017 and third of his career, all in Atlanta. He reached a career-high No. 348 in the Emirates ATP Rankings on July 31 and is currently ranked No. 374, the lowest-ranked player in the field. Monfils, a quarter-finalist here in 2011 (l. to No. 1 Djokovic), is 10-8 lifetime in Cincinnati. The World No. 21 bounced back from a R32 loss in Washington (l. to 200th-ranked qualifier Bhambri) by reaching the R16 last week at the ATP Masters 1000 Montreal (d. Nishikori in R32, l. to Bautista Agut).

4) A second all-American first-round matchup is slated to kick off action on the Grandstand Court when Donald Young faces Tommy Paul for the first time on the ATP World Tour. Young is bidding for his first match win in four tries at Cincinnati (2008, l. to Monfils; 2010, l. to Gulbis; 2012, l. to Levine). Ranked No. 57 in the Emirates ATP Rankings, Young has dropped three of his last four matches since defeating Tim Smyczek in the 1R at Atlanta (l. to Lacko in R16 at Atlanta; d. Smyczek in 1R, l. to Nishikori in R32 at Washington; l. to Paire in R64 at ATP Masters 1000 Montreal). The 20-year-old Paul is competing in Cincinnati for the first time following back-to-back QF appearances in Atlanta and Washington. He reached his first career ATP World Tour QF in Atlanta (d. Chung in R32, d. Jaziri in R16, l. to Muller in QF) and followed that up by reaching the QF in Washington (d. No. 17 Pouille in R32, No. 21 Muller in R16, l. to No. 9 Nishikori in QF). Paul reached a career-high No. 174 in the Emirates ATP Rankings on August 7.

5) The second afternoon match on the Grandstand Court features Fabio Fognini taking on Daniil Medvedev in a first-time encounter. Fognini advanced to the QF at Cincinnati in 2014 (l. to Raonic) and is 4-6 lifetime. The Italian No. 1 won his fifth ATP World Tour title in Gstaad (d. Hanfmann) last month and followed that with a SF showing in Kitzbuehel (l. to eventual champion Kohlschreiber). Medvedev, making his Cincinnati debut, advanced to the QF in Washington (d. Dimitrov in R16, l. to eventual champion A. Zverev in QF) but fell in the 1R to Adrian Mannarino last week at the ATP Masters 1000 Montreal. The 21-year-old Russian advanced to his 1st ATP World Tour SF and final at Chennai (d. Sela after saving 1 MP, l. to Bautista Agut) in January.

6) The night match on the Grandstand Court features two players who have not faced each other in nine years when Germany's Mischa Zverev and Spain's Fernando Verdasco square off in the first round. Verdasco has won all four meetings with Zverev, but the two have not met since the QF at New Haven in 2008, won by Verdasco in straight sets. The 29-year-old Zverev is winless in two previous trips to Cincinnati (2009, l. to Mathieu, R64; 2016, l. to Lopez, R64) but is hoping some of the success of his younger brother rubs off on him after 20-year-old Alexander Zverev defeated Roger Federer on Sunday to win the ATP Masters 1000 Montreal title. The elder Zverev advanced to his 2nd ATP World Tour singles final at Geneva as a qualifier (d. Nishikori, l. to Wawrinka) and earned the biggest win of his career over No. 1 Andy Murray to reach his 1st Grand Slam QF at the Australian Open (l. to Federer). Verdasco has an 8-11 lifetime record in Cincinnati, reaching the R16 in 2008 (l. to Lapentti) and 2011 (l. to Nadal). The Spaniard reached the final in Dubai (l. to Murray) and the SF at Doha (l. to Djokovic) and Bastad (l. to Ferrer).

Packed Stadium Sees Stakhovsky Claim Portoroz Title

Mon, 08/14/2017 - 12:50am

A LOOK BACK

Zavarovalnica Sava Slovenia Open (Portoroz, Slovenia): Ukraine’s Sergiy Stakhovsky makes a return to the Top 100 in the Emirates ATP Rankings after rallying from a set and a break down to deny Italy’s Matteo Berrettini 6-7(7), 7-6(6), 6-3 in Portoroz. The 31-year-old Kiev native is projected to return to World No. 99 with his sixth Challenger title and first since May 2016 in Seoul.  

 

#NextGenATP Italian Berrettini will break into the Top 150 for the first time with his fourth Challenger final. Meanwhile, the event brought a close to the career of local favourite, former World No. 43 Grega Zemlja. The Slovenian won six titles on the ATP Challenger Tour. 

Wishing all the best to @GZemlja in retirement. The former World No. 43 and six-time #ATPChallenger titlist hung up his racquet in Portoroz. pic.twitter.com/EiTw0KCNl0

— ATP Challenger Tour (@ATPChallenger) August 12, 2017

Nordic Naturals Challenger (Aptos, California, USA): Kazakhstan’s Alexander Bublik boosted his chances of qualifying for the inaugural Next Gen ATP Finals in Milan with a 6-2, 6-3 victory over Brit Liam Broady in Aptos. It is the 20 year old’s second Challenger title of the season after Morelos, Mexico in February and boosts him to a career-high No. 104 in the Emirates ATP Rankings. It is the 12th time this season a NextGenATP player has won on the ATP Challenger Tour. It brought Broady’s run of six straight wins to an end, having won through qualifying.

mt.ten Cup (Jinan, China): Yen Hsun Lu’s extraordinary run continued with a 29th ATP Challenger Tour title in Jinan. The top seed took down former World No. 50 Ricardas Berankis of Lithuania 6-3, 6-1 to make it back-to-back Challenger titles. The 33 year old of Chinese Taipei won last week in Chengdu and earlier in the year in Taipei City. He has not dropped a set in his past seven finals and extends his record in Challenger finals to 21-3 since 2008. Lu is projected to rise nine places in the Emirates ATP Rankings to No. 61. Berankis was searching for his second Challenger title of the season after his triumph in the Shymkent Challenger, Kazakhstan.

.@LuRendy reflects on a successful week in Jinan, China, where he claimed a 29th #ATPChallenger title. pic.twitter.com/dCSiLI8i9Z

— ATP Challenger Tour (@ATPChallenger) August 14, 2017

Claro Open (Floridablanca, Colombia): In an all-Argentine final, top seed Guido Pella took down Facundo Arguello 6-2, 6-4 to claim his 12th Challenger title and second of the year after Milan. The 27 year old did not drop a set all week and surges 17 spots to No. 75 in the Emirates ATP Rankings, his highest position since November last year.

Congrats @guido_pella!

Isner, Muller Start Strong In Cincinnati

Sun, 08/13/2017 - 11:02pm

Fourteenth seed John Isner won 91 per cent of his first-serve points (42/46) to win his opener at the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati 7-6(3), 6-4 against Serbian Viktor Troicki on Sunday.

The American hit 20 aces and saved both break points to improve to 3-4 against Troicki in their FedEx ATP Head2Head series. Isner, who is 9-1 in his past 10 matches, has won two titles in the past month: the Dell Technologies Hall of Fame Open in Newport and the BB&T Atlanta Open.

He reached the Cincinnati final in 2013, beating Novak Djokovic and Juan Martin del Potro before falling to Rafael Nadal in the final. Isner will next meet a compatriot, either #NextGenATP Tommy Paul or Donald Young.

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Gilles Muller, also a two-time titlist this season, leaned on his serve to get through a tight first-round contest against Ryan Harrison of the U.S. Muller struck 21 aces in a 6-4, 5-7, 7-6(3) win that took two hours and four minutes.

Muller, the 16th seed, is making only his second appearance in Cincinnati. He fell in the first round in 2015 to Benoit Paire. The Luxembourg left-hander will next play Albert Ramos-Vinolas of Spain or Russian Mikhail Youzhny.

Kypson, Kratzer claim 18s titles for Open spots

Sun, 08/13/2017 - 10:24pm
Kypson, Kratzer claim 18s titles for Open spots

10 Things To Watch In Cincinnati

Sun, 08/13/2017 - 9:23pm

The ATP World Tour returns to Cincinnati this week for the seventh Masters 1000 event of the year. Held at the Lindner Family Tennis Center, the Western & Southern Open welcomes Rafael Nadal as its top seed and seven-time champion Roger Federer as the second seed.

1) No. 1 On the Line: Either Federer or Nadal will be World No. 1 following the Western & Southern Open. If Federer and Nadal meet in the Cincinnati final on August 20, the winner will reclaim No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Rankings on August 21. See below for all scenarios.

NADAL & FEDERER's POTENTIAL POINTS IN CINCINNATI

Cincinnati

DNP

2R

3R

QF

SF

Final

Title

Nadal

7,465

7,475

7,555

7,645

7,825

8,065

8,465

Federer

7,145

7,155

7,235

7,325

7,505

7,745

8,145

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2) Long Time Coming: Federer, 36, debuted at No. 1 on Feb. 2, 2004 and has not been No. 1 since Nov. 4, 2012. He is hoping to break a pair of Andre Agassi’s records. Federer, a seven-time Cincinnati champion, would be the oldest World No. 1 since rankings were established in 1973. The four years and 289 days since Nov. 4, 2012 would be the longest gap between stints at No. 1.

3) Third Time’s the Charm: Nadal is trying for the third time this summer to regain the No. 1 ranking. He would already be No. 1 had he advanced to the semi-finals at either Wimbledon or Montreal.

4) Thiem’s Travails: No. 3 seed Dominic Thiem is 5-5 since Roland Garros, squandering match point(s) in recent losses to Kevin Anderson at Washington and Diego Schwartzman at Montreal.

5) Sascha in Cincy: No. 4 seed Alexander Zverev is one of nine #NextGenATP players in the Cincinnati main draw. Zverev is on pace to qualify for both the Next Gen ATP Finals and Nitto ATP Finals. The German has already punched his ticket to Milan and is No. 3 in the Emirates ATP Race To London.

6) Title Drought: No. 6 seed Milos Raonic has played 31 tournaments since his last championship at 2016 Brisbane. He opens against either Borna Coric or Nikoloz Basilashvili. Zverev is a potential quarter-final opponent.

7) American Invasion: Among the 10 Americans in the main draw prior to the conclusion of qualifying are No. 13 seed Jack Sock, No. 14 seed John Isner, No. 15 seed Sam Querrey and #NextGenATP wild cards Jared Donaldson, Stefan Kozlov, Tommy Paul and Frances Tiafoe.

8) Qualifiers Make Their Mark: Seven players advanced to the main draw through qualifying, including two Americans. In his fifth year since turning pro, Mitchell Krueger will make his ATP World Tour Masters 1000 debut. It will be Krueger's third ATP World Tour main draw of the U.S. summer (Newport, Washington). Also making his Masters 1000 debut will be Christopher Eubanks, who enjoyed a stunning run to the quarter-finals at the BB&T Atlanta Open last month. The college star at Georgia Tech opens against Gael Monfils.

9) Tipsarevic Lucky Loser: Former World No. 8 Janko Tipsarevic is making his return to the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 stage, receiving Lucky Loser entry into the main draw following Kei Nishikori's withdrawal due to a right wrist injury. The Serbian, who opens against Steve Johnson or David Ferrer, is appearing in his first Masters 1000 event of the year and making his return to Cincinnati following a three-year absence.

10) The Odd Couple: Eight Grand Slam championship teams are in the field, but the talk of the Western & Southern Open doubles draw is a first-time pairing. Zverev, 20, and Leander Paes, 44, will make their team debut. Paes is a former World No. 1 and two-time Cincinnati champion.

Brain Game: Zverev Starts Aggressive, Doesn't Look Back Against Federer

Sun, 08/13/2017 - 9:07pm

Alexander Zverev put the writing on the wall early. Then he blew the wall over.

Zverev powered to a 6-3, 6-4 victory against Roger Federer in the final of the Coupe Rogers in Montreal Sunday with a stunning display of power tennis that constantly had the Swiss star under immense baseline pressure.

Zverev hit through Federer on the quicker Canadian court, upping his power level right from the beginning of the match to force forehand and backhand errors and capture the all-important first break of serve. When Zverev broke for 3-1 in the opening set, it proved to be a pivotal moment that Federer never recovered from.

Zverev's forehand was the battering ram. He was averaging hitting his topspin, driving weapon at 119km/h (68mph) coming into the final, but he ramped it up an extra 12 per cent to 133km/h (83mph) through the first 23 points of the match. He came out guns blazing.

Federer was trailing 1-2, 15/30, on serve at the time, and got back to 30/30 with an ace down the middle in the Ad court. At 30/30, Zverev crushed two consecutive backhands to force a forehand error from Federer out wide, with the Swiss simply unable to match the power level of his younger opponent. Zverev averaged hitting his topspin backhand at 121 km/h (75mph) before the final, but was already at 124 km/h (77mph) before he cracked those two gems.

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Federer missed his first serve at 30/40, and Zverev unloaded with a huge forehand in the middle of the rally before finally forcing a Federer backhand passing shot wide for the break. Zverev quickly held to 15, and his 4-1 lead proved ominous, and indeed, insurmountable.

Zverev's relentless forehand power continued through the first set, crushing six of his 10 winners from that wing. The match produced several one-sided stats, but none more than the average groundstroke speed in the opening set.

Set 1 - Average Groundstroke Speed
• Zverev 118km/h (73mph)
• Federer 100km/h (62mph)

Zverev averaged hitting his groundstrokes a significant 18 per cent harder than Federer, making the Swiss have to often half-volley, slice, and stretch out wide to stay in the point. Zverev's average groundstroke speed dropped a touch by the end of the match, but Federer was never able to up his power level to pressure the 20-year-old German.

Full Match - Average Groundstroke Speed
• Zverev 115km/h (72mph)
• Federer (100km/h (62mph)

All of that firepower helped Zverev finish with 20 total winners, including nine from the forehand side, and five from the backhand. As Zverev has made his impressive run to the Top 10 of the Emirates ATP Rankings, his backhand has been the more reliable shot, while his big forehand has taken a little more time to consistently find the court. That box can well and truly be checked now.

Rally Length
The beginning of the point in the final was a fertile time for Zverev to ramp up the power with his serve and the ensuing Serve +1 bruising groundstrokes. Overall, almost three out of four points (74 per cent) in the final saw both player hit just two shots in the court, with only five rallies reaching double figures.

Length Of Rally
• 0-4 shots = 74% (83)
• 5-9 shots = 21% (24)
• 10+ shots = 5% (5)

Zverev's game style is built around crushing the ball first, and seeing where the dust settles later on. What's interesting is that while Zverev played most of the match on the front foot, both players ran almost exactly the same distance. Zverev ran 867 metres, while Federer ran just two more at 869 metres.

The small holes in Zverev's game are rapidly closing. He did miss several short, low, awkward balls when Federer pulled him forward in the court, and was sometimes too ambitious on defence playing down the line with offence.

Those outliers will soon be dismissed from his game, leaving opponents with a well groomed 6'6” power baseliner to wrestle with. The coming of Alexander Zverev is now in full force.

What Nadal & Federer Must Do To Seize No. 1 in Cincinnati

Sun, 08/13/2017 - 8:24pm

More than 10 years after they first battled for No. 1, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer will play for the top Emirates ATP Ranking this coming week at the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati. With current World No. 1 Andy Murray sidelined by injury, either Nadal or Federer will seize the top spot the Monday after Cincinnati.

World No. 3 Federer continued to gain ground on No. 2 Nadal by reaching the final of the Coupe Rogers in Montreal, although his defeat in the title match to Alexander Zverev means the Swiss will spot the Spaniard a 320-point lead heading into the seventh ATP World Tour Masters 1000 event of the season.

However, both players have destiny in their own hands. Should either win the title, they will also leave Cincinnati with the honour of being the new World No. 1.

NADAL & FEDERER's POTENTIAL POINTS IN CINCINNATI

Cincinnati

DNP

2R

3R

QF

SF

Final

Title

Nadal

7,465

7,475

7,555

7,645

7,825

8,065

8,465

Federer

7,145

7,155

7,235

7,325

7,505

7,745

8,145

Federer, who turned 36 in Montreal, will prioritise getting his body back into shape after admitting that ‘aches and pains’ hampered his performance during the Montreal final. “After vacation and practice, it's always a bit of a shock for the body,” he said.

While he would like to return to No. 1 after Cincinnati, Federer is thinking longer term at a record-equalling sixth year-end No. 1 finish. Asked in his post-match press conference whether he would prefer to get to No. 1 before the US Open or finish the season No. 1, Federer said: “Year-end if I could choose, yes. It would mean more. Then I could be on vacation with No. 1, not a bad thing (smiling). Pre-US Open all I have to do is talk to the press about it, how I would feel. Not as good (winking).”

Throughout his career, Federer has spent a record 302 weeks at No. 1. He last held top spot on 4 November, 2012 and was last year-end No. 1 in 2009.

Nadal has spent 141 weeks at No. 1 (seventh most weeks all-time) and last was at the pinnacle of the sport on 6 July, 2014. He has three times finished year-end No. 1, most recently in 2013.

Federer has won five titles this season, including a record eighth Wimbledon and ninth Halle title. He began the year by winning the Australian Open before claiming the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 'Sunshine Double' in Indian Wells and Miami.

Nadal has won four titles this year, including historic 10th titles at Roland Garros, Monte-Carlo and Barcelona. He has also reached three other finals, including the Australian Open and Miami, where Federer took the honours.

Both players receive first-round byes in Cincinnati. Top seed Nadal could face a tricky opener against Richard Gasquet. Second seed Federer will play the winner of Diego Schwartzman and Karen Khachanov first up and could meet his Montreal final conqueror Alexander Zverev in the semi-finals.

Doubles Drills With Jamie Murray Uncovered

Sun, 08/13/2017 - 8:14pm
Jamie Murray shows ATP World Tour Uncovered presented by Peugeot two key doubles drills on the practice court.

Zverev takes Rogers title over Fed

Sun, 08/13/2017 - 7:49pm
Zverev takes Rogers title over Fed

Zverev Reflects On Defeating His Childhood Idol Montreal 2017

Sun, 08/13/2017 - 7:42pm
2017 Coupe Rogers champion Alexander Zverev discusses his reaction to defeating his childhood idol Roger Federer en route to claiming his second Masters 1000 title of his career. Watch live matches at tennistv.com.