Category: Tennis

Wawrinka Out of Action After Second Foot Surgery

The Swiss will be out indefinitely as he starts to rehab. By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Tuesday June 22, 2021

Stan Wawrinka is set to miss more time after undergoing a second left foot surgery. The Swiss star, a three-time Grand Slam champion, announced the news on his social media channels on Monday.

Wawrinka, a former World No.3, has not competed since Doha in March. On March 25th he announce that he had undergone a first surgery on the foot.

Tennis Express

Currently ranked 30, Wawrinka owns a 3-3 record thus far in 2021.

It’s not the first time the legendary Swiss has gone under the knife. In 2017 he called his season early and did two surgeries on his left knee.

“The first surgery was arthroscopy to have a look at the problem and the second one was to reconstruct the cartilage,” Wawrinka said, according to “It was very difficult and tough, a big surgery. I needed crutches for eight weeks and lost a lot of muscles because of that.”

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Shapovalov Pulls out of Tokyo Olympics

The Canadian doesn't want to take the risk of travellng to the Olympics. By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Tuesday June 21, 2021

Denis Shapovalov joins a growing list of tennis stars that have opted out of this summer’s Tokyo Olympics. The Canadian star made the announcement on social media on Monday.

He joins Dominic Thiem, Rafael Nadal, Casper Ruud and Roberto Bautista Agut as ATP players who have elected not to travel to Tokyo.

Tennis Express

“After careful consideration I wanted to let you know that I will not be participating in the Olympics this year,” he wrote on Twitter. “Representing Canada means the world to me, but due to the current situation my team and I have decided this is the best decision for everyone’s safety.”

The World No.12 recently skipped Roland Garros due to a shoulder injury. Last week he reached his first semi-final on grass, where he was eventually defeated by Cameron Norrie.

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Federer Doesn’t Like that Grand Slams Titles Are Valued So Much These Days

The Swiss still shares the all-time Grand Slam title lead, but likely not for longBy Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Wednesday May 19, 2021

Roger Federer will bid for his 21st major title in two weeks at Wimbledon. But this week in Halle, where Federer is a 10-time champion, the Swiss says he doesn’t like that all the focus is on Grand Slam titles these days.

Tennis Express

“It seems like it’s only Grand Slam titles that matter these days. And I don’t like that,” he said. “Most of the time, we play ATP tournaments. At the time, I just wanted to beat Pete Sampras’ record. I’ve always said that anything that comes after 15 Grand Slam titles is a bonus. As long as all three of us play, anything is possible. My goals at Wimbledon are clearly quite high.”

No matter which way we slice it, Novak Djokovic is going to take his fair share of arguments, no matter which measuring stick we use. He broke the record for weeks at No.1 earlier this year, and he is also atop the all-time Masters 1000 titles list, tied with Rafael Nadal at 36.

If Djokovic finishes 2021 at No.1 he will break the record for most year-end No.1 finishes—he is currently tied with Pete Sampras at 6.

Even Federer had to admit he was impressed with Djokovic’s amazing performance last week at Roland Garros.

“The way Novak Djokovic came back against Stefanos Tsitsipas was amazing,” he said. “Even in the semi-final against Rafael Nadal, there were incredible rallies.”

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Golden Slam On the Table for Djokovic in 2021, Says Coach Marian Vajda

The World No.1 has won the first two Slams of 2021. Can he run the table? By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Wednesday May 19, 2021

Novak Djokovic, the unstoppable force that found his way past Rafael Nadal at Roland-Garros before claiming his 19th major title on Sunday, is still in the running for the calendar Slam.

Tennis Express

On Sunday, his longtime coach Marian Vajda says that the world-beating Serb is in good enough shape to go after it.

“As much as Novak is healthy, and he's healthy right now, he's in great shape, I think he has ability to win the Grand Slam for this year. I'm pretty sure,” Vajda said.

Asked to elaborate, Vajda added that Djokovic’s goal is to win every major major event he plays. Never mind that it’s a crowded year and Wimbledon is just two weeks away, with the Olympics not long after that, wedged between the Championships and the U.S. Open.

“Obviously his goal and our goal is to win the Olympics and then win the Grand Slam,” Vajda said. “That would be the absolutely top of this year. But it's still far away from us. We have to still focus on the next one. But overall he's set up for this year. His priority is really set up like Wimbledon, Olympics, and US Open. I think that says all. His schedule is according that we practice and prepare for those tournaments.

Djokovic, who is now just one major title behind both Federer and Nadal, says he’ll keep working to catch them. He never thought it was out of the question, he said.

“I never thought it was a mission impossible to reach the Grand Slams of these guys,” he said. “I mean, I'm not there, but it's one less. But they are still playing. Obviously they're playing great, especially Rafa with his level.

“We all have still opportunities at Wimbledon, all the other slams. You have four slams a year, so we're all competing for this amazing achievement and amazing trophies. I'll keep on going. I'll keep on chasing. At the same time I'll keep on paving my own path, which is my own authentic path. We all three of us have our own journeys, and that's it.”

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Schwartzman’s Solution for Nadal at Roland Garros

Bowing to Rafael Nadal for the second year in a row at Roland Garros gave Diego Schwartzman an interesting idea.
If you can't beat him, avoid him.

Diego Schwartzman snapped Rafael Nadal's streak of 36 straight sets at Roland Garros before the king of clay answered with a commanding nine-game run to close a 6-3, 4-6, 6-4, 6-0 victory racing into his record-extending 14th Roland Garros semifinal.

More: Nadal Subdues Schwartzman

It's the second year in a row 13-time French Open champion Nadal has stopped Schwartzman in Paris following his semifinal sweep last October. That came after Nadal's four-set 2018 quarterfinal victory over the Buenos Aires-born baseliner.

Given Nadal's 105-2 career record in Paris, Schwartzman has a simple solution for navigating the 35-year-old Spaniard in the future: hope to play world No. 1 Novak Djokovic rather than Nadal.

"I did great tournaments here in Paris, but always losing against Rafa the last few years," Schwartzman said. "In semifinal, two times quarters.

"I want to play maybe Nole next time, but no Rafa. Is difficult. I did great matches. Always close the last few matches. But at the end he's winning, so nothing."

Tennis Express

Last fall, Schwartzman surprised Nadal scoring a 6-2, 7-5 victory in the Rome quarterfinals.

Though the 5'7" Argentinean tested the king of clay today, Schwartzman said once Rafa becomes Rafa, he commands Court Philippe Chatrier.

"He feel like he's doing everything to put you two, three meters behind the line. The court is really big and you start to play difficult games and difficult matches against him," Schwartzman said. "The last three times we played here in Chatrier, two times we went to the fourth, and last year I was very close to go to the fourth, as well.

"You know, at the end is very difficult. I had the chances today maybe in the third. I was close. I was playing a little bit better than him. At the end he's Rafa and he's always finding the way."

Photo credit: Roland Garros Facebook

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Zidansek is Slovenia’s Mental Coach this Week in Paris

The Slovenian is on the rise, and leading the way for her country of just over two million people. By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Wednesday May 19, 2021

Slovenia’s Tamara Zidansek has been enjoying a Cinderella run at Roland Garros. At 85 in the world, she’s parlayed a trio of three-set wins to a run of a lifetime. The 23-year-old, who has a strong interest in psychology, has suddenly become a mental coach for two million Slovenians, says her coach Marjan Cuk.

Tennis Express

She wants to be a psychotherapist, mental coach,” her coach told reporters on Wednesday.

Cuk said that he and the rest of Zidansek’s team approached her and told her that she can be a big inspiration for her country this week in Paris.

“Look, you are studying this [subject], but now you can be a mental coach for whole Slovenia,” Cuk said. “If you go to the court and you show the strength and you show the people that I'm here to fight, they will follow you. So you are a mental coach for two million people in Slovenia.

“That was our way, no? She was looking and said, Wow, this is the thing. Yes, now I understand a bigger picture, not just small one.”

Zidansek took out No.6 seed Bianca Andreescu in her first match and has been off to the races from there.

She will face Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in the semifinals, and could become the lowest-ranked finalist in Roland-Garros history if she wins.

“Winning the first round was a big breakthrough for me,” she said. “I got a lot of confidence from that.” Zidansek is a remarkable story in Paris. In her first eight Grand Slam main draw appearances she had never been past round two.

Her exceptional forehand has driven her success. She cracked 34 forehand winners in her quarter-final win over Badosa, and has struck 109 forehand winners overall.

Her coach agrees that the forehand is big, but he warned that Zidansek is not a one-trick pony.

“Everyone is talking about her forehand,” he said. “I agree, this is really big weapon. But my opinion as a coach is that she have five pistols always, so she can play forehand, we improved a lot backhand, she can do a dropshot, sometime she go to the net. Variety of the serve is also quite much better than it was.”

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Kiki Bertens Has Achilles Surgery, Will Miss Start of 2021

The Dutchwoman had been plagued by the injury for some time.
By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Tuesday October 27, 2020

Kiki Bertens has undergone left Achilles surgery and will miss the 2021 Australian Open as she recovers. The No.9-ranked Dutchwoman posted the news on social media on Tuesday, saying that she is recovering well and had to have the surgery in order to stop playing in pain.

Tennis Express

"Some of you might know that I already had an Achilles injury for some time,” she wrote on Instagram. “The only possibility for me to play without pain again and get the maximum out of trainings and matches was to get a surgery. So that’s what I did now! I will miss the start of 2021, so unfortunately I won’t be competing in Australia. I will try my best to come back stronger as fast as I can’t wait to see you guys on tour soon again!”





Hoi allemaal, Zoals jullie misschien al wisten liep ik al erg lang met klachten aan mijn achillespees. Dit belemmerde mij de laatste tijd teveel in trainingen en wedstrijden. De enige mogelijkheid om weer het maximale uit mijn trainingen en wedstrijden te halen was om me te laten opereren. Dit heb ik dan nu ook gedaan. Hierdoor mis ik het begin van 2021 en zal dus niet deelnemen in Australië. Ik ga er alles aan doen om zo snel mogelijk sterker en fitter terug te komenπŸ’ͺ Some of you might know that I already had an Achilles injury for some time. The only possibility for me to play without pain again and get the maximum out of trainings and matches was to get a surgery. So that’s what I did now! I will miss the start of 2021, so unfortunately I won’t be competing in Australia. I will try my best to come back stronger as fast as I can πŸ’ͺ can’t wait to see you guys on tour soon again!

A post shared by Kiki Bertens (@kikibertens) on

The 28-year-old went 15-6 in 2020 and reached the round of 16 at the Australian Open and Roland Garros. She did not play the US Open.

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Nadal, the King of the Links?

The Spaniard came in sixth place in a 60-player golf tournament over the weekend in Spain. The kind of clay has traded in his racquets for a set of golf clubs, and the results have been (to nobody's surprise) promising. Over the weekend Rafael Nadal took part in the Balearic Open on his home island of Manacor, and finished sixth out of a 60-player field, completing 54 holes at nine over par.

Nadal was +2 on the first two days of the three-day event, then +5 on the final day.

Tennis Express

Excellent photos and videos of the event have surfaced on Twitter. Here, enjoy a small sampling.

Not long after finishing up the event, Nadal was back on the practice court, getting ready for his appearance at next week’s Paris Masters. The 20-time Grand Slam champion owns a career record of 19-5 at Bercy. He reached the semifinals at the event last year.

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Kasatkina on Nadal’s RG Triumph: I Was Crying with Him

The 2018 Roland Garros quarterfinalist said she couldn't hold back the tears when she watched the King of Clay triumph in Paris. By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Wednesday October 21, 2020

As a longtime fan of the King of Clay, Daria Kasatkina has always made it known that Rafael Nadal is her favorite tennis player to root for.

Tennis Express

With that knowledge in mind, I asked the 23-year-old Russian how she felt about Nadal’s 13th Roland Garros after her victory over Elena Rybakina on Tuesday in Ostrava. As expected, she was quick, and decisive, with her answer.

"Yes, that was sweet,” she said. “I was enjoying so much watching the final and I was crying with him while he was staying with the [Coupe des Mousquetaires]. The tears were falling from his eyes, it was very sweet.”

Kasatkina, a former quarterfinalist in Paris, went on to praise the genuine, humble nature of her favorite player, nothing that his appreciation of the moment and his love for the sport impressed her even more than his tennis.

“It's like he's winning 13 Roland Garros, 20 Grand Slams, and it still means so much to him and this is the real love to the sport, I think,” she said.

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Paris Rolex Masters to Limit Crowd Size

1,000 fans will be permitted for day sessions with no fans allowed for night sessions.
The Rolex Paris Masters will allow limited fans by day and no fans at night next month.

The tournament announced today it will limit crowd size to 1,000 fans per day session at the Accor Arena due to governmental protocol designed to protect health and safety amid the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic.

More: Djokovic Opts Out of Paris

"In adhering to the health restrictions applicable to Paris and the provisions of the decree issued by Paris’ chief of police, a total of 1,000 spectators will be allowed into the arena every day," tournament officials announced today.

The qualifying rounds and night sessions will be played behind closed doors without fans permitted.

The Rolex Paris Masters main-draw play is set for November 2nd-8th.

Defending champion Novak Djokovic announced he will not play Paris next month. 

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World No. 2 Rafael Nadal, who swept Djokovic to collect his 13th Roland Garros crown earlier this month, announced he plans to play the Paris Indoor Masters. Paris, Miami and Shanghai are the only Masters series championships missing from 35-time Masters champion Nadal's trophy collection.

Photo credit: Rolex Paris Masters Facebook

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Taylor Townsend is Pregnant! Baby Due in March

The talented American announced the news, and her plans to return to tennis after becoming a mother. By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Wednesday October 14, 2020

Taylor Towsend, 24, has announced that she will become a mother in March. The World No.90 broke the news on her Instagram on Wednesday, posting a long video to announced the news and report that she plans to return to tennis as a mother.

Tennis Express

Townsend, a former World No.61 who defeated Simona Halep at last year’s US Open en route to a career-best fourth-round performance, says the baby is due in March.

“Life has a funny way of putting you exactly where you are supposed to be. I’m so excited to embark on the journey of motherhood!!” Townsend wrote on Instagram, before adding:

“My entire life, my entire career, I’ve heard ‘You can’t. You won’t,’ and I’ve used it as a reason to fight hard, and as motivation to keep playing,” Townsend said in the video. “I’m sure this won’t be any different, so I’ll have to prove them all wrong again.”

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Kevin Anderson Named President of ATP Player Council, Four New Players Added

After four resignations. the ATP player council has filled the vacancies and made Kevin Anderson its president. After a spate if resignations hit the ATP’s Player Council in August, the organization has named four new players to replace those who departed.

Tennis Express

Novak Djokovic, John Isner, Vasek Pospisil and Sam Querrey resigned from the council to become part of the newly formed PTPA. Djokovic's fledging organization has gained support from top pros, and reportedly has about 200 of the Top 500 signed on.

Djokovic and the PTPA aim to give player-only representation to the players when it comes to negotiating prize money and rule changes on tour. They plan to incorporate women into the fold, but started out focusing on men, which was viewed as a mistake by many.

“I feel like we can all co-exist in the same eco-system,” said Djokovic, at the US Open last month. “It's very important for tennis players, being part of a very global sport, to have their own 100% player-only representation.”

The ATP announced on Tuesday October 13 that four new players have been elected to the ATP Player Council: Felix Auger-Aliassime (1-25 Singles), Jeremy Chardy (51-100 singles), John Millman (1-50 singles) and Andy Murray (At Large).

Auger-Aliassime, 20, is the youngest player in the Top 25. He is currently the World No. 22.

Kevin Anderson, formerly the ATP Player Council’s Vice President, will serve as its President.

The current ATP Player Council is as follows:

1-50 Singles: Kevin Anderson (P), Felix Auger-Aliassime, John Millman, Rafael Nadal
51-100 Singles: Jeremy Chardy, Yen-Hsun Lu
1-100 Doubles: Jurgen Melzer, Bruno Soares
At Large: Roger Federer, Andy Murray
Alumni Representative: Colin Dowdeswell
Coach Representative: Brad Stine

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