Saturday, 16 July 2016

Big names take a break

While the end of Wimbledon is a signal for most of the stars to take a rest, it doesn't mean the tennis stops.  Indeed the ATP Tour steps straight back into action with events in the USA, Sweden and Germany, and Romania and Switzerland provide the opportunity for lesser lights on the WTA Tour to shine.

Although Serena, Andy, Milos and Angie may not have been participating this week, there have been some prominent names sprinkled amongst the various draws.  Four former Roland Garros runners-up, Simona Halep, David Ferrer, Francesca Schiavone and Sara Errani, former US Open finalist Jelena Jankovic and former Aus Ooen finalist Marcos Baghdatis had donated their services (and ground shots and returns) to the tournaments, even though Halep is the only one amongst them currently top ten.

It was great to see Patty Schnyder returning to the court in Gstaad.   The Swiss former top ten player retired in 2011 but decided to make her comeback in 2015 and has been only playing lower tier ITF events until now.  The 37 year old was given a wild card and lost her opening round in three sets but for someone ranked 338 in the world not a bad effort for her first foray back in the WTA world.

As we stand the events have reached the semi final stage: (apart from Gstaad where it is quarter final time)

In Hamburg       Pablo Cuevas (seeded 3) (Uruguay) v Renzo Olivo (Argentina)
                           Martin Klizan (7) (Slovakia) v Stephane Robert (France)

In Newport        Ivo Karlovic (2) (Croatia) v Marcos Baghdatis (4) (Cyprus)
                           Gilles Muller (3) (Luxembourg) v Donald Young (8) (USA)

In Bastad           David Ferrer (1) (Spain) v Albert Ramos-Vinolas (3) (Spain)
                           Fernado Verdasco (5) (Spain) v Gastao Elias (Portugal)

In Bucharest     Simona Halep (1) (Romania) v Vania King (USA)
                           Laura Siegemund (4) (Germany) v Anastasija Sevastova (7) (Latvia)

In Gstaad           Timea Bacsinszky (1) (Switzerland) v Johanna Larsson (6) (Sweden)
                            Annika Beck (5) (Germany) v Rebeka Masarova (Switzerland)
                            Kiki Bertens (3) (The Netherlands) v Irina Khromacheva (Russia)
                            Viktorija Golubic (Switzerland) v Carina Witthoeft (Germany)

Expect more of the higher ranked players to reappear in coming weeks as the North American tournaments come to the fore, beginning with Stanford for the women and Washington for the men.

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