World Tennis News: Pre-Wimbledon Round-up

Last weekend saw Grigor Dimitrov crowned Aegon Championships champion, Ana Ivanovic won her first grass court title at the Aegon Classic and Roger Federer won his seventh Gerry Weber Open title in Halle, Germany.

_75543756_grigor_dimitrov2_paA very happy Dimitrov with the Aegon International trophy (source:www.bbc.com/sport/0/tennis)

Dimitrov,23 who was fourth seed became the only male player this year to win titles on three different surfaces after beating Feliciano Lopez 6-7 (8-10), 7-6 (7-1), 7-6 (8-6) in a dramatic final at The Queen’s Club in London. French Open Champion Maria Sharapova was in the crowd to watch her boyfriend win his fourth career title.

_75540701_ana_ivanovic_trophy_paIvanovic with her first grass court trophy(source:www.bbc.com/sport/0/tennis)

Serbian Ivanovic, 26 won the Aegon Classic title defeating Barbora Zahlavova Strycova 6-3, 6-2 in the final at Edgbaston in Birmingham. This was the former World number one Ivanovic’s third title this year and her fourteenth overall in her career to date.

D4157AF59E7B4A55A4285ED291ED1C76.ashxFederer wins his seventh Gerry Weber Open title (source:www.bbc.com/sport/0/tennis)

Federer beat Alejandro Falla 7-6 (7-2), 7-6 (7-3) in the Gerry Weber Open final to give him his fourteenth grass court title and a career total of seventy-ninth titles. The finals day at the Aegon Championships and Aegon Classic and in Eastbourne ahead of the Aegon International saw top names in tennis come together in Mixed Doubles Exhibition matches to ‘Rally For Bally’. British number one Andy Murray was joined on court at Queen’s Club by former Wimbledon mixed doubles champion brother Jamie, Ross Hutchins, British number one Heather Watson, five-times Grand Slam winner Martina Hingis and two-times Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka. Laura Robson who is currently unable to play due to injury was instead on-court interviewer for the event which also featured young players from the Elena Baltacha Academy of Tennis (EBAT) in Ipswich joining the stars on court to play.

IMG_5426Stars of the tennis world unite to Rally For Bally in memory of Elena Baltacha (source:www.lta.org.uk)

Martina Navratilova, winner of multiple Grand Slams in singles and doubles played at Edgbaston with former British number one Tim Henman, current British number three James Ward and another former British number one Anne Keothavong. Down in Eastbourne Greg Rusedski was joined by 2011 Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova, Agnieszka Radwanska and Britain’s doubles number one Colin Fleming with proceeds from all the matches going to support the Royal Marsden Cancer Charity and EBAT. See more photos from the three matches on the BBC website here

dx-murray0_2942785bRally For Bally selfie Murray brother, Robson, Hutchins, Hingis, Watson and Azarenka. (source:www.telegraph.co.uk)

Nino Severino, husband and coach of Elena Baltacha praised his wife’s “incredible strength” during her treatment for liver cancer in an interview ahead of the ‘Rally For Bally’ charity fundraiser matches, “I literally spent every second with Bal fighting all the way. It was horrendous cancer that she had, the worst you can get, in the liver. The fight was brutal.” he added “I loved her, more than anything and she felt the same. We were just utterly devoted to each other, utterly.” Severino continues to run EBAT which he set up with Baltacha, the former British tennis number one who died at the age of 30 last month. She retired from playing in November 2013, having struggled with injury and illness throughout her career where she won eleven singles titles, made the third round of Wimbledon in 2002 and was part of Great Britain’s Fed Cup team for twelve years, under the captaincy of Andy’s mother Judy.

_75544227_baltacha_olympics_gettyBaltacha in her playing days (source:www.bbc.com/sport/0/tennis)

Today nineteen-year-old unseeded American Madison Keys beat Angelique Kerber in a three set battle to win the Aegon Inetrnational final in sunny Eastbourne, 6-3, 3-6, 7-5 and register her first tournament win on the WTA Tour. Unseeded Keys defeated Britian’s Watson in their semi-final 6-3, 6-1. In the Men’s final defending champion Lopez beat top seed Richard Gasquet 6-3, 6-7 (7-5), 7-5 to take the title again this year.

_75714389_kerberAegon International winner Keys with the trophy and runner-up Kerber (source:www.bbc.com/sport/0/tennis)

The draw has been announced for this years Wimbledon Championships which starts on Monday with British number one and reigning Wimbledon champion Murray opening the proceedings on Centre Court against David Goffin from Belgian at 1pm. Murray, who is seeded third for this years tournament, will be hoping to replicate last years success and has been busy practising on grass with new coach Amelie Mauresmo. Novak Djokovic, who is top seed faces Andrey Golubev in round one, second seed Rafael Nadal will play Martin Klizan and seven-time champion Roger Federer opens his 2014 campaign against Paolo Lorenzi. Britain’s James Ward plays seventeenth seed Mikhail Youhzny in his first match.

_75667863_h_50909572British hopes at Wimbledon lie with defending champion Murray (source:www.bbc.com/sport/0/tennis)

Top seed in the Women’s draw is Serena Williams who faces Anna Tatishvili in her first match and current Australian Open Champion Li Na, who is seeded second will face Paula Kania. Sharapova will lay British wildcard Samantha Murray in round one and while British number one Watson will play Alja Tomljanovic.

 

 

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