#NextGenATP Humbert Continues Grass-Court Success In Newport

#NextGenATP Frenchman Ugo Humbert kept up his outstanding grass-court form on Friday at the Hall of Fame Open in Newport, advancing to the semi-finals over Belarusian Ilya Ivashka 7-5, 3-6, 6-2.

Humbert, seeded fourth, raced through the final four games of the match to prevail in two hours and 26 minutes. The 20-year-old defeated fellow #NextGenATP player Felix Auger-Aliassime to reach the fourth round earlier this month at Wimbledon, marking his best result at a Grand Slam. Humbert, who recorded his maiden ATP Tour semi-final this February on home soil in Marseille, cracked the Top 50 of the ATP Rankings this week.

Next up for the Frenchman is top-seeded American John Isner, who hammered 24 aces to defeat Australian Matthew Edben 4-6, 6-3, 6-4. The match was a repeat of their 2017 final, which Isner also prevailed in. The American now leads their FedEx ATP Head2Head rivalry 5-1 and has won all three of their grass-court matches. Isner is seeking his fourth title in Newport (2011-2012, 2017).

Marcel Granollers continued his Newport success with a convincing 6-3, 6-0 win in his rain-delayed match with German Mischa Zverev. The Spaniard took the first set before showers halted play on Thursday, but he returned with a vengeance and dropped just eight points in the second set. Granollers is through to his first ATP Tour semi-final since this event last year.

He’ll now play seventh seed Alexander Bublik of Kazakhstan, who scored his first ATP Tour semi-final by surviving a wild 0-6, 6-3, 6-0 battle with American Tennys Sandgren. After losing 10 of the last 12 points in the opening set, Bublik dropped only five points in the final set.

The 22-year-old Bublik has primarily competed on the ATP Challenger Tour and picked up four Challenger titles in the past year. He’s guaranteed to surpass his career-high ATP Ranking of No. 82 on Monday.

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Djokovic, Del Potro & Nishikori Highlight Best Social Media Posts Of The Week

From Novak Djokovic’s celebrations, Juan Martin del Potro continuing his recovery from knee surgery and Kei Nishikori praising the rising stars of the game, the world’s top players have been busy on and off the court. ATPTour.com looks at the best player social media posts from the past week.

Days after clinching his fifth Wimbledon title, World No. 1 Djokovic enjoyed a low-key party to celebrate the birthday of one of his brothers, Djordje Djokovic.

Del Potro underwent surgery last month to repair a fractured right kneecap, but shared some positive news on his recovery.

Nishikori was delighted at the success of 16-year-old Japanese junior Shintaro Mochizuki, who won the boys’ singles title at Wimbledon. Both players train at the IMG Academy in Florida and have shared the court for hitting sessions.

Stefanos Tsitsipas enjoyed a night out in Greece with WTA player Maria Sakkari and professional pole vaulter Emmanuel Karalis.

Karen Khachanov showed impeccable fashion sense in the latest issue of GQ China.

Daniil Medvedev had good reason to smile after cracking the Top 10 of the ATP Rankings this week.

Roberto Bautista Agut’s bachelor party was delayed by his maiden Grand Slam semi-final at Wimbledon, but the Spaniard finally got to relax with the boys.

It seems like everyone has been having fun with FaceApp, but Boris Becker posted our personal favourite.

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Jarry Aims To Follow In Grandfather Fillol’s Footsteps

At the age of 23, Nicolas Jarry has already reached two ATP Tour championship matches and defeated Top 3 opposition in the ATP Rankings. But, this week, the Chilean is aiming to make a significant breakthrough by lifting his first tour-level trophy and following in the footsteps of his grandfather.

The Santiago-born star has not dropped a set en route to the Swedish Open semi-finals, where he will meet Federico Delbonis for a place in the championship match. His grandfather, Jaime Fillol Sr., lifted six tour-level trophies between 1971 and 1982, including four crowns on clay. Fillol Sr. reached a career-high No. 14 in the ATP Rankings in 1974.

“He is one of the best Chilean tennis players. He taught me the sport since I was little,” said Jarry. “He took me to great tournaments. I remember Wimbledon when I was 12 and I remember going to the US Open a couple of times. There used to be an ATP [tournament] in Santiago, so I was always involved in the tennis.”

Fillol Sr.’s involvement in the sport runs deep. The six-time tour-level titlist played a key role in the establishment of the ATP pension and won the Stefan Edberg Sportsmanship Award in 1980.

Fillol Sr. encouraged his family members to take up the sport through to their early teens. That enthusiasm for sharing the sport with his family proved crucial in the development of his grandson, who is now potentially two wins away from joining him as an ATP Tour champion.

“He was part of the creation of the ATP and it was his idea to make the ATP pension,” said Jarry. “He made all his sons and daughters play tennis, it was a must until they were 14, so I was always doing sports and tennis. Every year, [I did] a little bit more until I began doing some fitness before school. Then, when I finished, I dedicated myself completely to the sport.”

For Jarry, his inspiration not only comes from the success of his grandfather, but also the past successes of his countrymen and players of a similar stature and game style. The 6’6” right-hander identifies his serve as his biggest weapon, with a powerful forehand adding an extra layer to his attacking abilities.

“Of course, the top three Chilean players, Nicolas Massu, Marcelo Rios and Fernando Gonzalez, have always been players that I have looked up to,” said Jarry. “But also, outside of that, the tall players [like] Juan Martin del Potro… Marin Cilic and Kevin Anderson.”

Alongside fellow 23-year-old Chilean Cristian Garin, the next chapter of Chilean tennis has clear potential. But can Jarry join two-time tour-level champion Garin in the 2019 winners’ circle this weekend?

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Londero Overcomes Gasquet To Reach Båstad Semi-finals

Juan Ignacio Londero advanced to his second ATP Tour semi-final on Friday, beating last year’s runner-up Richard Gasquet 7-6(5), 4-6, 6-3 at the Swedish Open.

The 25-year-old withstood 13 aces and saved seven of nine break points to reach the last four in Båstad after two hours and 51 minutes. Londero is aiming to capture his second clay-court tour-level trophy of the season after picking up his maiden ATP Tour crown at the inaugural Cordoba Open in February.

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Sixth seed Londero improves to 2-0 in his FedEx ATP Head2Head series against Gasquet, following his four-set victory against the Frenchman in the Roland Garros second round in May. The World No. 71, who owns a 17-11 tour-level record this year, will meet 2016 titlist Albert Ramos-Vinolas for a spot in the championship match. The 31-year-old defeated Roberto Carballes Baena 4-6, 6-1, 6-1 to record his 13th victory in 18 matches at the ATP 250 event.

Nicolas Jarry needed just 74 minutes to record his third straight-sets victory of the week. The fifth seed converted each of his four break point opportunities to defeat Jeremy Chardy of France 6-1, 6-4.

Jarry will meet Federico Delbonis of Argentina in the semi-finals. The 28-year-old left-hander claimed 76 per cent of first-serve points (28/37) to beat eighth seed Joao Sousa 6-2, 7-5.

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Isner To Go For Sixth Atlanta Title; When Is The Draw & More

Since joining the ATP Tour in 2010, the BB&T Atlanta Open has been won by American in eight of its nine editions: John Isner (5), Mardy Fish (2), Andy Roddick (1). 

Isner, the champion in 2013-15 and ’17-18, will look to continue to trend in 2019 as he goes for his second three-peat at this ATP 250 tournament, and will be joined in the field by fellow Americans Taylor Fritz, Denis Kudla, Reilly Opelka, and Frances Tiafoe. #NextGenATP Australian Alex de Minaur will attempt to follow in Nick Kyrgios’ footsteps by becoming the only other non-American champion here.

Here’s all you need to know about the Atlanta tennis tournament: what is the schedule, where to watch, who has won and more. 

Established: 1915

Tournament Dates: 22-28 July 2019

Tournament Director: Eddie Gonzalez

Draw Ceremony: Saturday, 20 July at 4pm on-site

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Schedule (View On Official Website)
* Qualifying: Saturday at 10am and Sunday at 11am
* Main draw: Monday – Wednesday at 11am and 7pm, Thursday at 12pm and 7pm, Friday at 12pm and 8pm, Saturday at 12pm and 7pm
* Singles final: Sunday, 28 July at 5pm
* Doubles final: Sunday, 28 July following singles final

How To Watch
Watch Live On Tennis TV 
TV Schedule

Venue: Atlantic Station
Main Court Seating: 3,788

Prize Money: US$694,995 (Total Financial Commitment: US$777,385) 

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Tickets On Sale: Buy Now

View Who Is Playing, Past Champions, Seeds, Points & Prize Money Breakdown

Honour Roll (Open Era)
Most Titles, Singles: John Isner (5)
Most Titles, Doubles: Bob Bryan, Mike Bryan, Matthew Ebden (2)
Oldest Champion: John Isner, 33, in 2018
Youngest Champion: Nick Kyrgios, 21, in 2016
Lowest-Ranked Champion: No. 49 Mardy Fish in 2010
Most Match Wins: John Isner (31)

2018 Finals
Singles: [1] John Isner (USA) d [8] Ryan Harrison (USA) 57 63 64   Read & Watch
Doubles: Nicholas Monroe (USA) / John-Patrick Smith (AUS) d [2] Ryan Harrison (USA) / Rajeev Ram (USA) 36 76(5) 10-8  Read More

Social
Hashtag: #AtlantaOpen

Facebook: @BBTAtlantaOpen
Twitter: @BBTatlantaopen
Instagram: @bbtatlantaopen

Did You Know… Embracing the hustle and bustle of Atlanta’s I-75 and I-85 corridors, the BB&T Atlanta Open headed downtown to a new venue at Atlantic Station in 2012. 

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Bautista Agut, Berrettini Return To Action In Gstaad; When Is The Draw & More

The J. Safra Sarasin Swiss Open Gstaad, founded in 1915, is one of two ATP Tour 250 clay-court tournaments in Switzerland and counts Roger Federer amongst its champions.

The 2019 field will be led by 2018 finalist Roberto Bautista Agut, returning to action following his delayed bachelor party and a semi-final run at Wimbledon (l. to Djokovic), defending champion Matteo Berrettini and Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters runner-up Dusan Lajovic. Pablo Andujar, the 2014 titlist, also features. 

Here’s all you need to know about the Gstaad tennis tournament: what is the schedule, where to watch, who has won and more. 

Established: 1915

Tournament Dates: 22-28 July 2019

Tournament Director: Jean-François Collet

Draw Ceremony: Saturday, 20 July

Are You In? Subscribe To Get Tournament Updates In Your Inbox

Schedule (View On Official Website)
* Qualifying: Saturday and Sunday
* Main draw: Monday – Friday at 10:30am, Saturday at 11:00am
* Doubles final: Sunday, 28 July at 11:30am
* Singles final: Sunday, 28 July following doubles final

How To Watch
Watch Live On Tennis TV 
TV Schedule

Venue: Roy Emerson Arena
Main Court Seating: 4,500

Prize Money: €524,340 (Total Financial Commitment: €586,140) 

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Tickets On Sale: Buy Now

View Who Is Playing, Past Champions, Seeds, Points & Prize Money Breakdown

Honour Roll (Open Era)
Most Titles, Singles: Sergi Bruguera, Alex Corretja (3)
Most Titles, Doubles: David Rikl (4)
Oldest Champion: Ken Rosewall, 40, in 1975
Youngest Champion: Richard Gasquet, 20, in 2006
Lowest-Ranked Champion (since 1979): No. 119 Thomaz Bellucci in 2009
Most Match Wins: Sergi Bruguera (32)

2018 Finals
Singles: Matteo Berrettini (ITA) d [2] Roberto Bautista Agut (ESP) 76(9) 64   Read & Watch
Doubles: [PR] Matteo Berrettini (ITA) / Daniele Bracciali (ITA) d Denys Molchanov (UKR) / Igor Zelenay (SVK) 76(2) 76(5)  Read More

Social
Hashtag: #JSSSOG

Facebook: @SwissOpenGstaad
Twitter: @SwissOpenGstaad
Instagram: @swissopengstaad

Did You Know… Roger Federer was presented with a cow during a homecoming celebration in 2003 after winning his first Wimbledon title. Federer fell in the final that year to Jiri Novak but won the title in 2004. He made a long-awaited return in 2013 and was again gifted a cow in a special ceremony.

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For Serbia’s Lajovic, Business Is Good On And Off The Court

EDITOR’S NOTE: This story was first published during Roland Garros on 29 May 2019. Dusan Lajovic is now into the quarter-finals at the Plava Laguna Croatian Open Umag, his first ATP Tour quarter-final since finishing runner-up this April at the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters (l. to Fognini). The Serbian, who seeks his first ATP Tour title, will play Slovenian Aljaz Bedene on Friday.

Serbian Dusan Lajovic swears he’s not addicted to coffee. With his morning breakfast, if he feels a little bit low on energy, the 30th seed at Roland Garros usually has a short espresso, and around 4 or 5 p.m., he might savour a cappuccino, a little pick-me-up to avoid the mid-afternoon slump.

So about two coffees every day.

“Two… three… four… Sometimes but not every day,” Lajovic told ATPTour.com. “Let’s say two is a regular dose.

“But I’m trying to not overdo it.”

Who could fault him, though, for occasionally indulging? It’s good for business.

Lajovic, along with Serbian doubles player Nikola Cacic, co-founded and co-owns “Laboratorije Kafe”, or Coffee Lab, located about 25 metres from his front door in Belgrade, or, if it was at Roland Garros, about the distance between Court Philippe Chatrier and Court 1.

The café serves the usual coffees – espressos and cappuccinos – along with fresh juices, smoothies, bagels, cookies and ice cream. They import their coffee beans from Italy, after originally sourcing them from Colombia and Brazil, where a sweeter bean grows.

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Now I would say it’s a little bit darker, and it’s similar to what people are used to in the country,” Lajovic said.

At home, most Serbians drink Turkish coffee, which has a more sour-tasting flavour, Lajovic said, but the lab offers something a little different.

True to its name, the business also has a lab-like feel. It’s all black and white, and its smoothies come in beaker-like glassware. “We actually buy the glasses in the shop from the laboratories,” Lajovic said.

Initially, when he and Cacic founded the business about a few years ago, Lajovic envisioned it as the first in a future chain of shops. But even the most fledgling of tennis careers require full-time focus, and, for Lajovic, future growth forecasts for his main hustle have never looked more promising.

The Serbian reached his first ATP Tour final in April at the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters, an ATP Masters 1000 event, beating Austrian Dominic Thiem (No. 5) and Daniil Medvedev of Russia (No. 14) to hit a career-high in the ATP Rankings of No. 23.

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He hasn’t surprised me with the level of tennis on clay, because I knew that he has the ability to play at a really high level,” said countryman Novak Djokovic, World No. 1 and 2016 Roland Garros champion.

But to do it day after day at such a big tournament and to win against big players like Dominic Thiem is phenomenal, and I congratulate him for the great success… It’s great for Serbian tennis.”

At Roland Garros, Lajovic is seeded for the first time at a Grand Slam, a designation that has helped him avoid the likes of Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal in the first or second round.

In four of the past seven Grand Slams, Lajovic has faced a Top 5 player in the first two rounds.

It’s a little bit of a relief,” Lajovic said. “Top 32 in a Grand Slam is something you’re always trying to do. When I broke into the Top 50, the next goal was to be seeded in a Grand Slam. Now I’m here, so I’m liking that I did those steps.

I think every player is doubting about his goals and everything, so whenever you do something like that, it feels satisfactory.”

Lajovic

The 28-year-old credits coach Jose Perlas, who has worked with former No. 1s Carlos Moya and Juan Carlos Ferrero, along with Lajovic’s countryman Janko Tipsarevic, for the steady improvement. At the start of 2017, Lajovic was ranked No. 93.

“I’ve tried to become a little bit more aggressive, to be more dominant with the forehand… and try to use that as my weapon from all kinds of positions on the court,” Lajovic said.

In the past, for instance, if the ball came to his backhand side, he’d hit a backhand, and if it came to his forehand, he’d hit a forehand. He rarely diverted from those basics. They’ve tweaked his fitness regimen as well, matching his workouts to his in-match movements.

Perlas was effusive in his praise of the veteran Serbian.

“The key lies in his total and absolute commitment to face the effort required to change his system, including his game, his workouts, as well as the demands of his new game style,” Perlas told ATPTour.com. “He is one of the people who has come to me with the most commitment… I have never seen him doubt what he is doing. He is always committed to improvement.”

The Serbian is dedicated to making a good run at Roland Garros as well, where he made his best Slam showing in 2014, reaching the Round of 16 before falling to Nadal.

Lajovic, however, doesn’t have to worry about facing the 11-time Roland Garros champion unless both reach the final.

The earliest time the Serbian could play a Top 5 player is in the third round, against fifth seed Alexander Zverev, which wouldn’t be until Saturday, or, in Lajovic’s language, at least three espressos and three cappuccinos from now.

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Caruso Stuns Coric In Umag

Italian qualifier Salvatore Caruso scored the biggest win of his career on Thursday at the Plava Laguna Croatia Open Umag, downing second seed and local favourite Borna Coric 6-2, 3-6, 6-1 for his first ATP Tour quarter-final.

The 26-year-old Caruso has caught fire on the clay in recent months, coming through qualifying and winning his first Grand Slam main draw matches to reach the third round at Roland Garros. He also qualified at Wimbledon, ’s-Hertogenbosch and Estoril.

Next up for the Italian is Argentine Facundo Bagnis, who eased past Croatian wild card Nino Serdarusic 6-3, 6-3. The 29-year-old is through to his first ATP Tour quarter-final since last July in Gstaad.

Fourth-seeded Serbian Dusan Lajovic recorded an impressive 6-4, 6-3 win over Russian Andrey Rublev. Lajovic won the first 14 points of the second set en route to his 70-minute victory. The World No. 36 in the ATP Rankings is into his first ATP Tour quarter-final since finishing runner-up in April at the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters (l. to Fognini).

Lajovic will now play Slovenian Aljaz Bedene, who celebrated his 30th birthday with a 7-6(3), 6-3 win over #NextGenATP Italian Jannik Sinner. All three of Bedene’s ATP Tour quarter-finals this season have come on clay.

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Gasquet Battles Back In Båstad

Fourth seed Richard Gasquet survived an intense battle on Thursday at the Swedish Open, rallying from a set down in Båstad to reach the quarter-finals over Austrian Dennis Novak 4-6, 6-3, 6-4.

Gasquet returned to action in May after missing the first four months of the year due to groin surgery. He improved to 8-6 this season after breaking Novak five times to advance in two hours and three minutes.

Next up for Gasquet is sixth-seeded Argentine Juan Ignacio Londero, who scored a marathon 4-6, 7-5, 6-3 win over Bolivian Hugo Dellien. Londero, who won his first ATP Tour title this February at the Cordoba Open (d. Pella), served to stay in the match at 4-5 in the second set. The Argentine beat Gasquet in their lone FedEx ATP Head2Head meeting two months ago at Roland Garros.

Eighth seed Joao Sousa dashed the hopes of local favourite Elias Ymer by winning the last five games of their match to advance 4-6, 6-4, 6-2. The 2014 runner-up (l. to Cuevas) is on a high after becoming the first Portuguese player to reach the fourth round at Wimbledon.

Awaiting Sousa in the quarter-finals is Argentine Federico Delbonis, who took out third seed and 2014 champion Pablo Cuevas 6-4, 6-4. Their match featured eight service breaks in the first 13 games, but Delbonis settled in midway through the second set to oust the Uruguayan in one hour and 23 minutes.

Sousa leads his FedEx ATP Head2Head rivalry with Delbonis 3-2 and has won their past two matches.

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Isner Successfully Begins Pursuit Of Fourth Newport Title

John Isner did not lose a set during two of his three Newport title runs. And although he dropped a set in his second-round match on Wednesday, the American advanced to the quarter-finals of the Hall of Fame Open with a 6-4, 6-7(5), 6-3 victory against Poland’s Kamil Majchrzak.

“It wasn’t easy, I played a long match, two hours and eight minutes. The conditions were brutal. It’s windy and like 90 per cent humidity, so it was tough conditions out there,” Isner said. “But I’m happy to claw through there because it wasn’t pretty at times, that’s for sure.”

Isner, competing in his second tournament since breaking his left foot in the Miami Open presented by Itau final against Roger Federer, is pursuing his first ATP Tour trophy of the season. The 34-year-old has claimed at least two titles in six of the past eight years, and he is looking to build his way into form after reaching the second round at Wimbledon, where he made his return to action.

Although the wind and humidity did not make it easy for Isner, he struck 25 aces and saved all five break points he faced. The World No. 15 also was happy to spend all the time he did on court, to continue to get match play as he recovers from his foot injury.

“I think it’s very good for me. I don’t play tomorrow, so to play two hours in conditions like that and humidity like that, it’s good for sure,” Isner said.

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Isner will next face Aussie Matthew Ebden in a rematch of the 2017 Newport final, won by the American. Isner leads his FedEx ATP Head2Head series against the World No. 110 4-1. Ebden defeated Denis Kudla 6-2, 6-2 in the second round.

Although Isner moved on, the second and third seeds were ousted in Rhode Island. American Tennys Sandgren dismissed second seed Adrian Mannarino 6-4, 6-1 in just 73 minutes, and Spaniard Marcel Granollers beat third seed Jordan Thompson 6-2, 7-6(6) in 88 minutes.

Granollers
Photo Credit: Dino E. Garcia
In the quarter-finals, Sandgren, who made the fourth round at Wimbledon, will face seventh seed Alexander Bublik in a rematch of a first-round match in Miami from earlier this year, won by the Kazakh. Bublik defeated qualifier Viktor Troicki 3-6, 6-3, 6-3.

Granollers will play German Mischa Zverev, who moved past Argentine Guido Andreozzi 6-4, 6-4. Zverev was 1-11 at tour-level on the season entering this week.

In other action, fourth seed Ugo Humbert, a #NextGenATP Frenchman, beat 2018 finalist Ramkumar Ramanathan 7-6 (5), 6-0. He will next play Ilya Ivashka of Belarus, who advanced past American Christopher Eubanks 6-4, 6-3.

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