Maria Sharapova got heavy criticism from players, says Pat Cash
In an interview to Sports Radio, the 1987 Wimbledon champion Pat Cash commented on the criticism that Maria Sharapova has been getting since going through her doping ban between 2016 and 2017.
“She’s been very hot and cold. Some of the players point to ‘because she’s not allowed to take her drugs anymore,’ that’s why she can’t compete”, said Cash.He’s not going to be a big strong guy, he’s going to have to find other ways (to find power).” On the new Davis Cup format, Cash concluded: “The Davis Cup is non-existent anymore… Until they fix the Davis Cup up to it’s an event that people want to play who cares who is in the team?
Australian Open: Defending Champion Roger Federer Crashes Out After Four-Set Epic Against Stefanos Tsitsipas
Federer Is The Tie-break Titan
Roger Federer has long been the most dominant tie-break competitor on the ATP World Tour. No other player in the history of tennis has won a higher rate of tie-breaks (65.1 per cent) or a greater number of tie-breaks (432), according to the FedEx ATP Performance Zone.
But it takes a little bit of digging to learn just how impressive that is. For instance, this year’s Wimbledon and US Open champion, Novak Djokovic, ranks second among active players by winning 63.3 per cent of tie-breaks in his career.
To pass Federer, the Serbian would need to win his next 19 tie-breaks without losing one, and have Federer stand still on the leaderboard. Not so easy. Federer’s dominance in tie-breaks also extends to championship matches, where the level of competition is the toughest. “The tie-breaks are huge, especially in big-time moments like Grand Slam finals or finals in general,” Federer said at the US Open. “That’s where you really, really want to win the breakers.”
In finals at Grand Slams, ATP World Tour Masters 1000 events and the Nitto ATP Finals, Federer has won 40 of 65 tie-breaks, a 61.5 per cent win rate. Only 10 players other than Federer have been that successful in championship match tie-breaks at all tour-level events, forget while having a ‘Big Title’ on the line. He has been especially effective in Grand Slam finals, triumphing in a jaw-dropping 70 per cent of his tie-breaks in those moments. Federer thought deeply in Flushing Meadows about what it takes to thrive at 6-6 in a set.
“If you have a good serve, that’s always helpful,” Federer said. “You want to play patiently aggressive, I would think. You don’t want to go for broke, don’t want to do crazy things. But it does sometimes pay off as well. You have to balance it right.” The two active players directly behind Federer in number of tie-breaks won are arguably two of the biggest servers of all time in John Isner (387-244, 61.3%) and Ivo Karlovic (377-378, 49.9%).
Source – ATP
Del Potro Strikes Back In GQ Feature
Juan Martin del Potro, who will face two-time champion Novak Djokovic in Sunday’s US Open final, recently spoke with Chloe Cooper Jones for a feature with GQ Magazine. The 6’6″ Argentine, who beat Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer en route to his maiden Grand Slam title nine years ago, shared his memories of his run in 2009, the injuries that followed and his unique bond with tennis fans:
The stands are packed with fans dressed in blue and white, waving the Argentinian flag. Del Potro waves to the crowd, which morphs into a wall of cell phones, ready to record his every move on court. He’s only a few minutes into his warm-up before the fans start singing the familiar refrain heard at all his matches. “Ole, ole ole ole, Delpo, Delpo!”
At an earlier practice, a young girl started weeping at the mere sight of him. She held her arms out to him until he came over to comfort her. It’s not pity for his injuries that inspires so much devotion from his fans; it’s how he’s recovered from them. “I take the really sad moments with me to the court,” del Potro says. “I’m able to transform all that energy, and from it create strength, faith, and a will to honor everything I’ve gone through. I use the memory of those painful moments as a weapon to keep fighting.”
Soon he’ll leave Miami and return to his hometown of Tandil for a well-earned rest. Tandil was founded around a mysterious boulder that teetered precariously on the edge of a mountain, defying gravity. The rock eventually fell, splitting into two at the bottom of a canyon. A replica of the rock was built and put back in the same spot, this time engineered not to fall again from the mountain. The rock is cemented there, no longer by luck but by science and technology.
In Argentina, del Potro is often referred to as the Tower of Tandil. He has fallen, been put back together, reconstructed, and now stands stronger than ever. He’s not an underdog anymore. He’s not fragile. A kid in the stands holds up a sign that says “Delpo the Gentle Giant,” and I think, Sure, kid. This is the kind giant who grinds opponents’ bones for his bread.
Source – ATP