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2014 FRENCH OPEN DAY 9: What!... What!... What!... The Frenchman Takes Out Garcia-Lopez, Sets Up Murray Quarterfinal

Monday, June 2, 2014

Frenchman Gael Monfils celebrates his 4th-round win over Spaniard Guillermo Garcia-Lopez at the 2014 French Open.

PARIS (Reuters) - Home favorite Gael Monfils reached the quarter-finals of the French Open for the fourth time when he ended the run of unseeded Spaniard Guillermo Garcia-Lopez with a 6-0 6-2 7-5 win on Monday.

The 23rd seed, who also made it to the last eight in 2008, 2009 and 2011, blazed through the first two sets and held off the world number 41 in the third, ending the contest on a sun-drenched court Philippe Chatrier with an ace.

Monfils will face British seventh seed Andy Murray for a place in the last four, a stage he reached in 2008 when he was defeated by Roger Federer.

"In the third set, when I broke him he started to go for his shots and played more freely," Monfils, whose preparations have been hampered by an ankle injury he sustained in early April, said courtside.

"I became too defensive so I had to accelerate again."

No French man has won their home slam since Yannick Noah in 1983.

During the first two sets, Garcia-Lopez was a pale shadow of the player who knocked out world No.3 Stan Wawrinka in the first round.

The Spaniard peppered the court with unforced errors, most of them from his forehand, the very shot that helped him progress to the last 16.

He went 2-0 down in the third before regaining his composure as Monfils, the last French player left in the singles, played too conservatively.

The Frenchman, who had advanced to this round after beating Italian Fabio Fognini in an unforced errors-fest, turned the situation around thanks to some fine returns and, spurred on by the crowd, broke decisively in the 11th game.

Next up is Wimbledon champion Murray, who fought hard to beat Spain's Fernando Verdasco in straight sets.

"He's such an entertainer," Murray said after his match.

"He is one of my favorite players to watch. There's going to be some fun points."

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Posted by Shelia
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Wimbledon Day 5: Ever The Diplomat, Venus Side Steps Reporters Attempts To Inflame Court Assignment After Defeating Sanchez

Saturday, June 25, 2011

American Venus Williams celebrates third round 2011 Wimbledon Championships win.

Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez
(Reuters) - It made not a scrap of difference where Venus Williams played Spain's Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez at Wimbledon on Friday.

Center Court, court 16 or the local weed-strewn park... it would still have resulted in a thrashing.

As it was the five-times champion paraded her skills on Court One and duly reached the last 16 with a 6-0 6-2 victory to seal a re-match with Bulgaria's Tsvetana Pironkova who she surprisingly lost to last year.

Pironkova beat second seed Vera Zvonareva and with twice grand slam champion Svetlana Kuznetsova also exiting Williams's half of the draw and the road to a July 2 date on Center Court is beginning to look a little less precarious.

After a few polite questions about her performance, reporters attempted to drag Venus into the court scheduling debate which flared up after her sister Serena, the reigning champion, was dispatched to the badlands of Court Two on Thursday.

Just like her Spanish victim, however, they were batted away with the minimum of fuss.

"Court Two's a solid court," said the 31-year-old, who played her first round there. "I'm grateful that it didn't rain when I played on Court Two.

"When I played on center I was grateful to be able to play that match when it rained and I was under the roof. So it's all worked out pretty well for me so far.

"I think you made your own observations already. I think go ahead and write what you feel is the truth and what's right."

After her near three-hour battle against 40-year-old Kimiko Date-Krumm in the second round, Williams was back to her brutal, dominating best on Friday.

Her serve peaked at 120mph and she lost just two points when her booming first delivery hit the mark.

The fact that she has just returned from a five-month injury break has ceased to be an issue and few, it seems, are looking beyond another all-Williams final.

"I'm in the next round. That's my main goal regardless whether I play amazing, whether I play halfway decent, doesn't matter. It's just about finding a way to win," the 23rd seed said. "As long as I find a way to win that round, I'm good. So for me it's not about any level."

Photos by Getty Images

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Serena Hopes To Mastermind U.S. Revival

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

By Simon Evans

MIAMI, March 25 (Reuters) - Serena Williams believes the United States needs to get more tour events if it is to address the lack of American women in the top 100 -- and she could be willing to play a role in bringing about that change.

The world number one is followed by her sister Venus, number six in the rankings, but the only other American women in the top 100 are Bethanie Mattek (37) and Jill Craybas (85).

The anticipated flood of talent following the emergence of the high-profile Williams sisters has not happened with the rankings dominated by East Europeans -- or as Serena puts it: "It seems like there are 12 Russians in the top 10".

"I just think, when I was growing up there were lots more tournaments in the United States, a lot more American players, now there are five or six tournaments and no American players.

"You don't see the players, they are in Europe and Asia which is where all the players are coming from," Williams told Reuters in an interview arranged by the WTA Tour's sponsor Sony Ericsson.

In recent years, a popular WTA tournament in San Diego has been dropped and Williams said this could have a knock on effect on attracting young girls to the sport.

"We have got to get tournaments back, like San Diego which was well established but was cancelled. Those tournaments were the ones I grew up watching. I grew up going to (the event at) UCLA because it was close to me. My Dad would take us there and I wanted to be a tennis player because of going there," she said.


The 27-year-old Williams said she could be interested in a role, after her playing days are over, trying to entice tournaments back to the U.S and developing young talent.

"That could be interesting it would be fun to get a lot of support back -- that is the only way we will get the players," she said.

Williams though has not completely given up hope on the next generation of players making the breakthrough.

"There are a few American players coming up, they are really, really young and haven't got attention yet and you never know.

"I didn't get much attention when I was very young, I came out of nowhere. I am hoping the same thing can happen," she said.

Despite her sadness at the decline of U.S. tennis, Williams boycotts one of the biggest events in Indian Wells -- where she was jeered by the crowd in 2001 after Venus pulled out of a semi-final clash with her sister.

Although that event has become one of the new mandatory tournaments, with penalties for non-attendance, Williams skipped this year's edition and says she has no intention of ever returning.

"I don't play Indian Wells, I haven't played it for forever and I will never play it again. After that bad experience there is no need for me to go back, I've been there and I left in glory," she said.

Photo By Getty Images
© Thomson Reuters 2009 All rights reserved.

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WTA Allowing On Court Coaching Thing Of The Past

Thursday, July 24, 2008

On July 14, 2006 the following announcement was posted on the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour site:

Tour To Trial On-Court Coaching

Rogers Cup in Montreal and Pilot Pen Tennis in New Haven to launch test of latest groundbreaking innovation designed to make game more fan friendly and entertaining for TV and in-stadium viewers

ST. PETERSBURG, Florida – The Sony Ericsson WTA Tour announced today the launch of an historic on-court coaching test at the Rogers Cup presented by National Bank in Montreal and Pilot Pen Tennis presented by Michelob ULTRA in New Haven tournaments that will add to the entertainment value and intrigue to viewers of women's professional tennis. The test represents the first time in women's Tour history that on-court coaching has been trialed, and follows on the heels of the 2006 introduction of a series of groundbreaking innovations designed to enhance the entertainment value of women's tennis to its global television and live viewing audiences. Full Article Here.

Today, according to an article on Reuters, this trial has been halted indefinitely.

I'm not sure that anything was accomplished during this trial, either for the players or the viewing audience. One of the worst aspects for the viewing audience (at least for me) was that most of the coaches and players did not want their conversations to be overheard. They either removed their microphones or spoke in their native languages.

If the trial meant as much to you as it did to me, I doubt that you will miss it.

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Posted by Shelia
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