Status: WTA #36.
DOB: December 31, 1991 In: Macerata, Italy
First Memory of Tennis: “When I start to play tennis I was with my oldest brother (Leandro).”
Tennis Inspirations: “I don’t know, I like this game and I enjoy even if it’s the things that are… I just enjoy [smiles].”
Greatest Sports Moment: “I think…greatest…I don’t have greatest moment. I think all matches you win is good. It feels good.”Continue to read full article...
Funny Tennis Memory: Playing a doubles match in 2011. I swung and I was just holding the butt cap of the racquet…the whole racquet was shattered and broke off and I was like holding three inches of the racquet. The rest went towards the net.
First Famous Player You Met Or Encountered: I remember I was on the same court as Gustavo Kuerten at the UCLA Open when I was younger. On the same court as him, not hitting with him, but got a picture with him and stuff. He was out there practicing for the tournament, my dad was there and I was just out there with him. I remember saying Hi to him and watching him practice. I just remember how hard he worked and what a great guy he was.Continue to read full article...
I loved the Djoko-Nadal match up on Saturday because even though Djoko won and he’s the dominant player in the world, Nadal has that charisma that most of the players on the ATP Tour do not have today. Watching the Djoko-Berdych finals on Sunday, I found myself not as captivated even though the match was a finals and went three sets. As good as Djoko and Berdych are, they don’t have that X factor, charisma, dah-ling. Their matches are like museum art, beautiful, inspiring, but lacking real animus and gravitas. They’re both such pretty boys, but the camera doesn’t lie. Maybe that’s why there are so many slides off the players and onto their model-thin wife/fiancee looking tortured in the stands or onto Boris Becker, a player who had real presence and still does. It almost feels sometimes like Boris wants to just jump out of the stands and his tired and racked forty-something and grab a racquet to show Djoko and Berdych what real impassioned tennis playing looks like.Continue to read full article...
Gael Monfils downed Roger Federer for the second time in a row on red clay, in the Davis Cup final last November and today in straight sets in Monte Carlo.
And right, Rafael Nadal is embroiled in a third set with John Isner, who he has never lost to in four meetings. Though Isner extended Nadal to five sets at Roland Garros four years ago.Continue to read full article...
Jared Donaldson continued his fine form, powerfully dismissing Gastao Elias in straight sets. The eighteen year has really, really impressed me here this week on and off the court.
Another young American who has greatly impressed me is Francis Tiafoe. “Big Foe” was training today lightly with his long time coach Mischa, who has worked with Francis since the age of nine. Tiafoe reminds me of a boxer, he has the perfect physique for tennis and a middleweight boxer. As he ripped baseline forehand/backhands back and forth off feeds, he looked like a pugilist unleashing combinations on the punch mitts. Emile Griffith was a Jamaican boxer who worked in a garment factory in New York City and his boss Howie Alpert saw his muscular physique sans shirt one day and had him become a boxer. Griffith became a Hall of Fame welterweight and middleweight champion.Continue to read full article...
Iron Mike Russell lucky losers into the main draw after Rajeev Ram pulls out. He has to face the hard hitting Argentine Renzo Olivo. Struggling with confidence issues, a falling ranking (he’s outside the top 200 now) and a new Head racquet, Russell is up 2-0 in the first but loses the set. Then he’s up a break in the second and loses that one too. 63 64 was the final score.Continue to read full article...
Young American Jared Donaldson, 18, defeated former ATP No. 8 Radek Stepanek 6-3 7-6 and said after the match: “I’d be lying if it wasn’t my biggest win to date. It’s the best player I’ve ever beaten.”
Donaldson, who originally connected with coach Taylor Dent via a phone call because he felt he needed to beef up his serve – and Dent was renowned for his monster serve as a former top 25 ATP star – served two aces in the last three points of the tiebreaker, which he won 7-1.Continue to read full article...
After a couple of sets at Longwood Park, I headed about five miles east on University to check out the new location for the Sarasota Open, which will be played this year for the first time at Lakewood Ranch Country Club.
On my way over I stop for lunch at Sweet Tomatoes and one of the young ladies working there, Natalia, happens to tell me she’s so excited to get a volunteer job next week for the Sarasota Open, she saw the sign, applied and got it. She was thrilled because she had no idea there was a pro tennis event here, until she saw the sign on University.Continue to read full article...
If you’re a competitive tennis player you need to monitor what you eat and how much you eat. Playing a match at full strength and perfect health is hard enough as it is, if you’re not feeling well or have a bloated stomach, it will affect or ruin your performance.Continue to read full article...
Novak Djokovic separated himself from Andy Murray by bageling his rival in the third set, to capture the Miami Open/Indian Wells sweep.
The way Djokovic distanced himself from Murray today reminded one of Usain Bolt pulling away from the world’s best sprinters at the Olympics. Or Muhammad Ali outclassing and dominating Jerry Quarry or Ernie Terrell.Continue to read full article...