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Autumn 2020 Tournaments and World Tour Final

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Post by sirfredperry on Thu Oct 15, 2020 7:45 am

Thanks to everyone for a terrific response to the 2020 RG topic.

There's tournaments this week in St Petersburg and Cologne. In Russia, Cameron Norrie has recorded two excellent wins but Dan Evans went down to Stan the Man despite having three MPs.

Andy Murray had a disappointing 6-4, 6-4 loss to Verdasco (who obviously did hear the drums) in Cologne. He didn't serve very well and although he fought hard it was not a great display. They are playing again in Cologne next week and Andy is scheduled to appear again.

Six players have qualified for what will be the last London WTF - Djoko, Rafa, Thiem, Medvedev, Tsitsipas and Zverev. So just the two places remain. It's unclear just how much more Rafa will play this season. He sometimes skips the 02.


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Post by sirfredperry on Thu Oct 15, 2020 5:33 pm

Another bad result today for Medvedev who appears well short of the form he showed last year.

Another who lost today was Cilic. Once a regular top-tenner, Marin is now down to 40 in the rankings.


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Post by sirfredperry on Sat Oct 17, 2020 7:38 am

Shapovalov has beaten Stan the Man in St Petersburg and now meets another rising star, Rublev, in the semis.

Could it be that the Canadian, who is having a good season, could be the next to challenge the Big Three? He's now the same age as Federer when Rog won his first slam.

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Post by Jeff Navarro on Sat Oct 17, 2020 11:34 am

Djokovic isn’t playing Paris 1000 and instead will play Vienna 500. Something to do with the points amnesty.

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Post by sirfredperry on Sat Oct 17, 2020 5:52 pm

The battle between the young bloods was won by Rublev who beat Shapovalov in three sets in St Pete's.

In the final, the Russian takes on Coric who got the better of Raonic in the other semi.

Raonic, BTW, was diplomatically neutral when asked, in the light of the latest Rafa French triumph, who was the GOAT. The Canadian merely spoke of how terrific it was to have all of the Big Three playing at the same time.

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Post by No name Bertie on Sat Oct 17, 2020 6:39 pm

sirfredperry wrote:... Raonic, BTW, was diplomatically neutral when asked, in the light of the latest Rafa French triumph, who was the GOAT. The Canadian merely spoke of how terrific it was to have all of the Big Three  playing at the same time.
There is no GOAT if the GOAT is someone awesome on all surfaces. Rafael is clearly the best on Clay - on clay alone he has almost matched Pete Sampras' total slam tally of 14. Federer and Djokovic have shown themselves to be the best or with the best off clay.

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Post by No name Bertie on Sat Oct 17, 2020 6:52 pm

With regard the next gen players - the same ones are appearing with some regularity now towards the latter end of tournaments especially non slam tournaments.

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Post by naxroy on Sat Oct 17, 2020 7:37 pm

Raonic is one clear victim of the big three

and its outstanding what Wawrinka and Murray did in those times

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Post by sirfredperry on Sat Oct 17, 2020 9:18 pm

naxroy wrote:Raonic is one clear victim of the big three

and its outstanding what Wawrinka and Murray did in those times

Raonic's big serving signalled him out as a possible Wimbledon winner. But he came up against Murray in the 2016 final and that was that.

Roddick, too, appeared to have the perfect game for grass. But he had to face Federer in THREE finals at SW19 and left south-west London empty-handed too.

You only have to look at the preponderance of women Slam winners of late to see what would have happened in recent years if the Big Three plus Stan and Andy had not been around. There would perhaps have number of been three or four players with two or three Slams each and the number one position changing hands frequently.

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Post by Jeff Navarro on Sun Oct 18, 2020 6:15 pm

Alexander Zverev won the Bett1Hulks Indoor event in Cologne beating Canada’s Felix Auger Aliassime 6-3 6-3. 12th career title for the German.

There’s another event at the same venue starting tomorrow and pretty much the same field are taking part.

Andrey Rublev won St Petersburg Open beating Borna Coric 7-6 6-4. 6th career title for the Russian - season leading 4th title of the year tied with Djokovic

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Post by Jeff Navarro on Sun Oct 18, 2020 6:25 pm

Andy Murray has withdrawn from the second event in Cologne with a pelvic injury.

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Post by sirfredperry on Sun Oct 18, 2020 7:04 pm

Murray has another go in Cologne starting tomorrow. He ought to win his first match but then is scheduled to face Schwartzman.

Rublev was 5-2 down in the tiebreak in the first set of his final today. He's a man in form.


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Post by Jeff Navarro on Sun Oct 18, 2020 7:13 pm

Sir Fred - Andy is injured

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Post by No name Bertie on Sun Oct 18, 2020 8:23 pm

Jeff Navarro wrote:Andy Murray has withdrawn from the second event in Cologne with a pelvic injury.
There was always a risk that stress associated with playing elite level tennis (and training) with a metalized hip joint would cause further damage to surrounding areas.  If this really is a pelvic injury then Murray needs to seriously consider his future welfare, assuming that this latest issue is not already career ending.

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Post by CaledonianCraig on Sun Oct 18, 2020 8:40 pm

No name Bertie wrote:
Jeff Navarro wrote:Andy Murray has withdrawn from the second event in Cologne with a pelvic injury.
There was always a risk that stress associated with playing elite level tennis (and training) with a metalized hip joint would cause further damage to surrounding areas.  If this really is a pelvic injury then Murray needs to seriously consider his future welfare, assuming that this latest issue is not already career ending.

He knows better than anyone the true extent of his physical condition right now. The other day on the BBC website he was speaking about the future in a positive light and talking of preparations for next year so sounds to me nothing too serious.
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Post by sirfredperry on Sun Oct 18, 2020 8:59 pm

Ta for the update on Andy M. Let's hope it's not too serious.

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Post by No name Bertie on Sun Oct 18, 2020 9:47 pm

bbc wrote:A scan conducted after his return to the UK revealed tendonitis of the psoas: the muscle which joins the lower back to the top of the leg.

Murray said in a Facebook post that he decided to pull out after some practice on Sunday.

"I've been trying to deal with it in training, and in the matches, and unfortunately after my match here this week it's flared up again," he said.

"I've been practising the last few days and trying to manage it, but after playing some points today, I decided it was not going to be good enough to play."

Speaking before last week's opening round defeat to Fernando Verdasco ... "I want to try and play matches and get tournaments in, because physically my body tends to feel better the more I play," he told reporters.
https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/tennis/54590774

The psoas muscle helps to move the hip joint and it is the tendon that connects the muscle to the femur that tends to get inflamed as it moves over the hip joint.  So it is not directly related to any possible bone damage but small bits of loose material can be one of the reasons for inflammation. Another reason could be overexertion.  Anyway it seems that rest will cause the inflammation to go down.

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Post by Jeff Navarro on Tue Oct 20, 2020 1:10 pm

Kyle Edmund suffered another first round lost at Bett1Hulks championships - his third first round lost in a row.

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Post by Jeff Navarro on Tue Oct 20, 2020 1:10 pm

It’s being reported that Rafael Nadal will play Paris and London.

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Post by bradman99.94 on Tue Oct 20, 2020 2:44 pm

Good to see Dan Evans is back on the winning trail. He's had a good few first rounder's lately primarily, I think, because clay isn't a good surface for him and a couple of tough draws

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Post by sirfredperry on Tue Oct 20, 2020 3:33 pm

Cameron Norrie joined Evans among today's winners. Edmund is having a poor run. He had FOURTEEN BPs in his match but only won four games.

I guess it makes sense for Rafa to play London this year, having had a far lighter schedule than normal. You can see either Rafa or Novak winning at the 02 as both will be fresher than usual.

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Post by naxroy on Tue Oct 20, 2020 3:36 pm

Jeff Navarro wrote:It’s being reported that Rafael Nadal will play Paris and London.

Yes, but as he doesnt play Viena, Djokovic is almost assured number 1 at the end of this season. so he will tie with sampras

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Post by Jeff Navarro on Tue Oct 20, 2020 9:44 pm

naxroy wrote:
Jeff Navarro wrote:It’s being reported that Rafael Nadal will play Paris and London.

Yes, but as he doesnt play Viena, Djokovic is almost assured number 1 at the end of this season. so he will tie with sampras
I’m not 100% on the points but Djokovic can earn a maximum 1800 points from Vienna and London - obviously if he wins both events.

Nadal can potentially earn 2100 points so unless Djokovic has two poor events the Spaniard can’t get #1

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Post by slashermcguirk on Wed Oct 21, 2020 7:52 am

Bizarrely Nadal has never won the tour finals, maybe this is his best chance

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Post by naxroy on Wed Oct 21, 2020 10:54 am

It is his best chance because he has not played during the year, so he should be fine.
But fast indoor courts are his weakest scenario. He is competitive, but far from dominant. And even so, he made 2 finals in the ATP WTF.

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Post by slashermcguirk on Wed Oct 21, 2020 1:33 pm

Djokovic can tie Sampras for the record number of year end number ones of 6, that would be a nice coup particularly if he backs it up by beating Federers record of 310 weeks at number one in March. Big if obviously but certainly possible

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Post by sirfredperry on Wed Oct 21, 2020 1:35 pm

Yes, a good chance for Rafa to finally win the WTF. I think it's no coincidence that the last three winners in London (Dimi, Zverev and Tsitsipas) have all been non Big Three guys.

They, perhaps, have taken advantage of the fact that the top stars are whacked out after a long season. I can't think of another big tournament which has not been won by any of the Big Three in the last three years.

That's not to say that the last three O2 champs did not show excellent form to win it. Just think this year it will be either Rafa or Novak who will triumph.

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Post by No name Bertie on Wed Oct 21, 2020 3:06 pm

slashermcguirk wrote:Bizarrely Nadal has never won the tour finals, maybe this is his best chance
It never seemed bizarre to some given Nadal's schedule, his highly physical approach to tennis and his sort of 110% commitment to win tournaments - led to him losing energy towards the end of the season - requiring a recuperation and a recharging of the batteries. Also his best surface was clay. There seemed a period when he would also dominate on grass but injuries in 2009 and 2012 seemed to stop him (in addition to Djokovic).

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Post by JuliusHMarx on Wed Oct 21, 2020 5:26 pm

There seemed a period when Del Potro seemed destined to dominate but injuries destroyed his career. What if, what if, what if...

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Post by sirfredperry on Wed Oct 21, 2020 6:17 pm

Good win for Dan Evans today, beating Tiafoe in straight sets. I recall the LTA getting tremendously excited at the, then, teenage Evans about 10 or 11 years ago.

Some might argue that Dan never really applied himself properly. But the drugs ban seems to have been the turning point and he's now, finally, realising his potential.

Never ceases to amaze me that certain players, given a God-given talent, fail to use it. Nearly everyone has the ability to be good at certain jobs. Hardly anyone can play sport, or in this case, tennis, at a very high level.

Yet we constantly see some who will not apply themselves. Yes, it's a tough job - the constant practice, the travelling, the away-from-homeness and, now, the Covid restrictions. But it doesn't go on for ever. You can make a lot of money and then walk away and do something else.

Hats off to the men and women on the circuit who give it their all. Some of them work amazingly hard and never get higher, say, than 121 in the world. But they can look themselves in the mirror at the end and say: "I worked my socks off, but there were 120 players in the 7.6 billion world population who were better than me."

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Post by slashermcguirk on Wed Oct 21, 2020 8:10 pm

Am I right in saying Dan Evans has never won a single ATP tournament? He has done well to climb the rankings because I often feel he is a limited player. He is efficient enough but really lacks a big weopan. The type of player that might make the occasional round 2 or 3 of a slam but not much more, I don’t think it’s through lack of effort, I just think that’s his level.

The gap after Murray in British tennis is huge

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Post by bradman99.94 on Thu Oct 22, 2020 10:41 am

slashermcguirk wrote:Am I right in saying Dan Evans has never won a single ATP tournament? He has done well to climb the rankings because I often feel he is a limited player. He is efficient enough but really lacks a big weopan. The type of player that might make the occasional round 2 or 3 of a slam but not much more, I don’t think it’s through lack of effort, I just think that’s his level.

The gap after Murray in British tennis is huge

I’m a Dan Evans fan but I completely agree with this statement

I think the way that Dan has come back from his completely stupid drugs ban is admirable and I’d agree that this is his best period. I also like the way he comes over as an ordinary bloke that happens to be very talented at tennis rather than (not that I know anything about his background) a sort of already wealthy citizen of the world where parents are from different countries and they were born in one country, grew up in another and learnt their tennis in a third; which seems to happen often in the case of British players.
His style of play adds different layers and subtleties with the differing speeds and spin in rallies; makes a great counterpoint to the muscular back-of-the-court matches.
Looked on Prime last night but no replay of his game?

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Post by sirfredperry on Fri Oct 23, 2020 12:50 pm

Norrie went down 7-5, 7-6 yesterday to Raonic who has now.....pulled out.

Evans faces Khachanov today. it's tough but he has a good chance.

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Post by sirfredperry on Fri Oct 23, 2020 5:56 pm

Evans has beaten Khachanov after a 2hr 40mins struggle 3-6, 7-6, 6-4.

This is a really good win for Dan who now takes on Humbert of France in the semis.

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Post by Jeff Navarro on Fri Oct 23, 2020 8:54 pm

I think Dan Evans is someone who never realised how good he could be until he let it fall apart with his cocaine antics. For me, not really big on British tennis outside of Andy Murray, whenever I’ve seen Evans there looks a player with talent. But in the past he looked overweight. At the age of 30 he’s got the opportunity to play well for 4-5 years and build a successful career.

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Post by sirfredperry on Sat Oct 24, 2020 7:37 am

A good deal of controversy in that Evans match yesterday. I've just seen a few clips on YouTube.

There's no hawk-eye in this tournament. First, the umpire - foolishly - called a shot from Khachanov out in the first set when replays showed it was clearly in.

Evans could also be seen arguing with the umpire at another stage of the match

Then at a vital stage of the second set tiebreak there was no overrule from the umpire on a shot from Evans that was called in and which gave the Briton set point.

Khachanov reacted angrily, swiping at the net and hitting the umpire's chair before losing 6-4 in the final set.

Rule one for umpires - Don't overrule unless there's been a clear error.

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Post by sirfredperry on Sat Oct 24, 2020 6:29 pm

Evans saw four MPs come and go before losing his semi in a 3hr-plus battle. Disappointing as I thought this was a winnable match.

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Post by slashermcguirk on Sun Oct 25, 2020 2:07 pm

Serious quality field in Vienna! With the exception of Fed and Nadal pretty much every top player is playing, it’s like a masters 1000 feel.

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Post by sirfredperry on Sun Oct 25, 2020 3:54 pm

Yes, a real big-name tournament. I wondered why Kyle E had to qualify (he lost, BTW) but the last direct acceptance was for the 31st ranked player.

A real tough draw for practically everyone, with Thiem having to take on Nishin for starters, then possibly Stan and then possibly Rublev.

Djoko aint got it easy, either, and could face Schwartzman in the quarters.

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Post by slashermcguirk on Sun Oct 25, 2020 5:50 pm

Strongest ATP 500 field I can remember seeing, the draw is totally stacked. There is hardly an easy match anywhere in the draw from round 1. The tournament director must be pinching himself, such a shame crowds can’t be at it

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Post by naxroy on Sun Oct 25, 2020 7:56 pm

Congrats to Zverev and best of luck to Big Diego

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Post by slashermcguirk on Sun Oct 25, 2020 8:59 pm

What happened to Schwartzman today, must have had a howler

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Post by Jeff Navarro on Mon Oct 26, 2020 12:24 am

slashermcguirk wrote:What happened to Schwartzman today, must have had a howler
Zverev played lights out, zero double faults. With his level today only Djokovic at his absolute best would’ve had a chance

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Post by Oioi on Mon Oct 26, 2020 11:55 am

Indeed, Zverev for me has the highest potential of the next gen. Mentally he's been poor but if he can improve in that area then he'll be a real force to be reckoned with. Big serve, top notch backhand, and big forehand but tends to play inexplicably passive at times despite these gifts. If he can let go and play aggressive more often he'll be a world beater.

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Post by slashermcguirk on Mon Oct 26, 2020 1:08 pm

I gotta say I rank Thiem way ahead of Zverev. Better serve, forehand and backhand in my opinion. Thiem leads their H2H 8-2 including 4-0 in grand slam meetings. I do rate Zverev when he is in form but when not at the races he looks so average.


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Post by Oioi on Mon Oct 26, 2020 3:48 pm

I agree with you slasher, I just don't count Thiem as next gen as he is 4 years older!

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Post by sirfredperry on Mon Oct 26, 2020 5:32 pm

One guy refusing to go gently into that dark goodnight is Kevin Anderson who survived a 2hr 45min battle in Vienna against Dennis Novak today

Anderson is down to 111 in the rankings but continues to rage, rage against the dying of the light.

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Post by sirfredperry Yesterday at 10:12 am

Anderson saved three MPs in that victory.

Not such good news for Shapovalov who was beaten in straight sets by Austrian Jurij Rodionov.

Today Djoko takes on fellow Serb Krajinovic while Dan Evans plays "former Brit" Bedene.

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Post by slashermcguirk Yesterday at 4:24 pm

‘Former Brit’ haha, to be fair British was always a stretch. You could probably say the same about Cameron Norrie and Kyle Edmund, konta another that is very much British at a stretch!

Apparently Britain even tried to grab Djokovic back in the day but he told them where to go.

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Post by sirfredperry Yesterday at 5:04 pm

Speaking of Djoko he's come thru a tough match against Krajinovic. Novak was 5-3 down in the first set before winning it on the tiebreak and then took the second set 6-3.

Earlier Dimi beat Khachanov in straight sets.

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