Thursday, May 12, 2016
TENNIS THURSDAY: Halep,Nole Win Madrid; Murray-Mauresmo Split; Williams Sisters Play Doubles In Rome
HALEP AND DJOKOVIC WIN MADRID MUTUA OPEN
Simona Halep and Novak Djokovic won the latest warm-up tournament for Roland Garros, the Mutua Madrid Open in Spain. World #2 Halep defeated Dominika Cibulkova and World #1 beat World #2 (and defending champion) Andy Murray in three sets 6-2 3-6 6-3. Murray was coming off an impressive win over Rafael Nadal, becoming the first person to beat the King of Clay in the same clay tournament in consecutive years. Djokovic now has 29 ATP Masters Shields and is tied for 6th on the all-time list with Pete Sampras and Bjorn Borg with 64 career ATP titles.
ANDY AND AMELIE ANNOUNCE END OF COACHING RELATIONSHIP
Andy Murray and Amelie Mauresmo announced a mutual agreement to end their coaching relationship after 2 years together. They are both relatively new parents (Mauresmo gave birth to a son in August, and Andy's wife gave birth to a daughter in February) and apparently the travel demands became too great for her. It was noted by several observers that Jamie Delgado was in Andy's coaching box in Madrid and this announcement was not too much of a surprise. Murray rose to #2 in the world under Mauresmo and was 7-5 in tour finals but was unable to win another major while being coached by the 2-time major champion. It will be interesting to see who Murray selects next. He was hailed for being the rare elite male athlete who had a female coach, and he should get a lot of kudos for that.
VENUS AND SERENA PLAYING DOUBLES IN ROME, PREPARING FOR RIO?
World #1 Serena Williams finally returned to the WTA tour in Rome, winning her first match over Anna-Lena Friedsam. Venus Williams won her first match in Rome as well, defeating Coco Vandeweghe in straight sets but the when the two sisters played doubles (for the first time in nearly two years!) they lost pretty easily, 1-6 5-7 against the team of Katarin Srebotnik and Andreja Klepac. The two do intend to play doubles at the Rio Olympics, where the tennis program runs from August 6-14. The Williams Sisters are the winningest tennis team in Olympics history, with each winning a singles Gold medal (Serena in London in 2012 and Venus in Sydney in 2000) and together they have three golds (Sydney, Beijing and London).