Tuesday, September 30, 2014

TENNIS TUESDAY: Murray, Kvitova Win Titles; Rafa Returns; Dimitrov Poaches Fed Staff

Li Na was honored in a retirement ceremony at the China Open in Beijing

Federer's Physio Poached By "Baby Fed"
Wimbledon semifinalist and future World #1 Grigor Dimitrov has long been compared to his idol Roger Federer. Now, he has hired away Federer's longtime physical trainer Stephane Vivier. Vivier had worked with the 17-time major champion since 2009 but will be working with getting the 23-year-old Bulgarian into even better shape as he tries to improve his Top 10 ranking into a Top 5 ranking in the next year.

Murray Wins First Title Since 2013 Wimbledon, Saving 5 Match Points Against Robredo 
Andy Murray has not been the same player since he completed his life's dream to become the first British player to win Wimbledon in over 75 years. However, maybe in a sign that things are turning around for the Scot he was (finally) able to win another ATP tour title (his 29th), in Shenzhen, China by defeating Tommy Robredo. Typically, Murray did it the hard way, facing (and saving 5 match points in the second set tiebreaker) and then coming back to blitz the Spanish veteran in the 3rd set for a 5-7 7-6(9) 6-1 win.

In Wimbledon Final Reprise In Wuhan, Kvitova Dispatches Bouchard In Straight Sets Again
Petra Kvitova of Czech Republic and Genie Bouchard of Canada met in the final of the Wuhan Open, a reprise of their more famous meeting in the 2014 Wimbledon final just 2 months ago, but the result was similar. Kvitova was not as sharp in Wuhan as she was in London, but she still won 6-3 6-4 and became the fourth player to qualify for the year-end championships in Singapore.

Rafael Nadal Returns To Tour After 13-Week Absence, Bagels Gasquet In Easy Win
14-time major champion Rafael Nadal has been off the tour for 13 weeks since his stunning 4th round loss to Nick Kyrgios at Wimbledon, missing the entire North American hard court season which he dominated last year. Nadal returned to competitive play at the China Open in Beijing, where he dispatched the slumping Richard Gasquet 6-4 6-0.

Serena Wins In Beijing Despite Losing First 5 Games As A 33-Year Old; Venus Gets Revenge
World #1 Serena Williams withdrew from the Wuhan Open with a viral illness last week during a match against Alize Cornet and this week started where she left off by losing 5 consecutive games to Silvia Soler-Espinosa. However, she won 12 of the next 13 games to win the match and advanced again with an easy win over Tsevatana Pironkova. Her sister Venus Williams is also playing in Beijing and got revenge against French youngster Caroline Garcia for a 3rd set tiebreak loss in Wuhan the week before.

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