Mark Your Calendar | Tennis Will be Back on TV from 23rd-28th June

Are you missing the tennis summer season? The French Open, Wimbledon Championships and the grass court season may have been cancelled but you can still get your tennis fix on Amazon Prime Video watching ‘Schroders Battle of the Brits‘ taking place behind closed doors from 23rd – 28th June.

The six-day event, organised by seven-times Grand Slam doubles and mixed doubles champion, Jamie Murray, will be held at the National Tennis Centre in Roehampton, London to raise money for NHS Charities Together. The mens only fixture will have singles and doubles events and feature top players such as former British and World number one Andy Murray (Jamie’s brother for those who are not aware) alongside other top British players such as Kyle Edmund, Cameron Norrie and Dan Evans.

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Jamie told BBC Sport “The last few months have been incredibly challenging times for everyone and we see this event as our way of giving back,” he added, “A lot of work has gone in to make sure this could happen and we are excited to be able to bring an action-packed week of tennis, while raising valuable funds for NHS heroes to say thank you for the amazing work they have done.”

In conclusion, “I’m really excited to be, for the first time, bringing together the current generation of British male players to compete against one another while raising significant funds for charity.” It is hoped the event will raise at least £100,000 for the NHS charities.

Andy Murray has not played since the Davis Cup Finals last November due to a bruised pelvic bone so this event will be testing out his hip in preparation for the start of the professional tennis season whenever that may be.

This will be the first competitive domestic tournament since coronavirus stopped play and will see the top eight British male players battle against each other.  In the singles, two groups of four players will compete for a place in the semi-finals and ultimately to be crowned the singles champions. The doubles competition will see six pairs compete to become the overall doubles winners.

The tournament will be followed by four new British Tour events that will take place over consecutive weeks from 3rd-26th July at the LTA’s National Tennis Centre in Roehampton. The venue has been approved as an elite training venue and the LTA has been working with the Government to undertake the necessary preparations and risk assessments to enable these events to happen.

Scott Lloyd, LTA Chief Executive, said: “The LTA is looking forward to bringing tennis back into people’s lives this summer, and are excited about events like this inspiring fans to get involved in our sport and pick up a racket.

Watch the live action exclusively on Amazon Prime Video in the UK and Ireland and on Eurosport and Tennis Channel in the US.

If you are not already an Amazon Prime member click HERE to find out more information. Keep up-to-date on all future tournaments and news from the LTA on TwitterFacebook and Instagram

Information and photos sourced and used with courtesy of the www.lta.org.uk and www.bbc.com/sport/tennis/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

World Tennis News | Andy Murray (Virtually) Wins Madrid Open

With the professional tennis tour currently suspended due the coronavirus pandemic, the world’s top ATP and WTA players are swapping their rackets for Playstation controllers to compete in virtual tournaments. Andy Murray and Rafael Nadal were two of thirty-two players who competed online in the Madrid Open Virtual Pro event.

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Part of the Tennis World Tour video series, the Madrid Open took place yesterday in the digital version of the Manolo Santana Stadium. Both the men’s and women’s events had prize money with each champion deciding on how to distribute their winnings into relief funds.

Two time Madrid Open champion Murray won his third title without leaving his sofa. Murray, who competed in Group 1 alongside five time winner Nadal, defeated Belgian’s David Goffin in the final 7-6 (5) to win the event and claim the prize money. He shared his winnings between the NHS and the tennis player relief fund, a charity for lower-ranked players who are unable to earn  money during the pandemic.

Murray announced on his Instagram, “I’ll be donating half of the 45 thousand dollars prize money to the NHS and the other half to the tennis player relief fund.”

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World number seven Kiki Bertens from Holland won the title after beating France’s Fiona Ferro in the final. Also competing was British number one Johanna Konta, Victoria Azarenka and Caroline Wozniacki among others.

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The event, which was streamed live on the Madrid Open’s Facebook page and the platform’s new gaming app, was the first virtual tennis tournament solely contested by professional tour players.

Information sourced from www.bbc.com/sport/tennis/

World Tennis News | What Are The Professional Players Doing During Self-Isolation?

The current COVID-19 pandemic has impacted so many people across the globe in both their health and professional life. While most people are luckily enough to be able to work from home, professional tennis players, like most people involved in sport, have seen all their tournaments either cancelled or postponed until further notice.

In the tennis, the three remaining Grand Slam tournaments of 2020 have been disrupted, the French Open has currently been re-scheduled to September, the Wimbledon Championships have been cancelled (the first time since World War Two) and the US Open maybe re-scheduled for later in the year. This summer’s grass-court season has also been cancelled and there will be no professional tournaments happening elsewhere in the world as both the men’s and women’s professional tours are suspended until at least mid-July.

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So what are the professional players doing to keep active during self-isolation ? Former British and World number one Andy Murray challenged fellow professionals and tennis fans to try his 100 volley challenge. Murray took to his Instagram with wife Kim to complete the challenge in his back garden – Totally Tennis performance players Liam and Isla Hignett rose to the  challenge, see their video on our Facebook and Instagram

Tonight (17th February) Murray and current world number one Novak Djokovic will be live on Instagram (6pm BST) to answer any questions. Got a question? Comment on Murray’s Instagram post for a chance to be featured. Djokovic himself challenged his fans to try some acro yoga with a partner, he demonstrated the move with is wife Jelena on his Instagram page and they also completed Murray’s volley challenge.

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Meanwhile another former World Number One and 20-time singles champion Roger Federer gave his fans a social media tennis lesson. Federer took to Twitter and Instagram to offer his followers a solo drill to improve their volley skills, he tested his reflexes hitting the ball more than 200 times – the video has already been viewed over 3 million times. Federer asked his fans to video themselves in a hat and recreate his drill with the hashtag #tennisathome and then he shared a selection on his feed. Fellow champion Serena Williams took up Federer’s challenge posting her volley video to her page.

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The ATP Tour has been forced to suspend the 2020 Tour so the rankings have been frozen until it’s resumed, Djokovic still sits in the No. 1 spot but the frozen weeks will not count towards his reign.

If you need some inspiration to keep you occupied while in self-isolation check out the #AtHomeWithTheHignetts series with some challenges and fun games demonstrated by Liam and Isla Hignett – click HERE to see more.

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Local and International Summer Tennis Competitions Cancelled

Sadly Totally Tennis will be unable to contest their unbeaten record in the Annual Festival of Sport against Basingstoke’s twin town Euskirchen in 2020 after the Basingstoke Voluntary Sports Council announced that it’s been cancelled due to the current coronavirus pandemic.

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It’s the first time in twenty-seven consecutive years that the twin-town competition, which was scheduled to take place in Euskirchen in June, has been cancelled. Last year Basingstoke won 22-7 overall on home soil but the local clubs/teams will have to wait until June 2021 to contest the title in the rescheduled event in Germany.

Head Coach James McIntosh (pictured above with last year’s competitors) said, “It’s such a shame that the festival will not take place this year, much like many other events which have been cancelled.” he added “Some of the players who had previously been on the trip were looking forward to meeting up with their friends and others were excited to be part of the Festival of Sport for the first time. We look forward to going to Germany next year.”

It’s not just local sporting events being affected by COVID-19 but also prestigious international sporting competitions such as the Tokyo Olympics, Euro 2020, Tour de France and the F1 calendar all being cancelled or postponed. The All England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC) recently announced that this summer’s Wimbledon Championships has been cancelled for the first time since World War Two.

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The 134th tournament, that was due to be played between 29th June – 12th July in London, is not the only one to be cancelled with the news that the whole grass-court season including Queen’s and Eastbourne, will not go ahead in the UK. There will be no professional tournaments happening elsewhere in the world this summer, including the French Open which has been re-scheduled to September. It remains to be seen what will happen with the US Open later this year.

For more information about the cancellation of this year’s Wimbledon Championships, click HERE. Members of the public who paid for tickets in the Wimbledon Public Ballot for this year’s Championships will have their tickets refunded and will be offered the chance to purchase tickets for the same day and court for The Championships 2021.

Wimbledon photo used with courtesy of http://www.wimbledon.com/

 

 

 

World Tennis News | Djokovic Wins Seventh Australian Open Title

Naomi Osaka and Novak Djokovic have taken the first Grand Slam titles of the 2019 season at the Australian Open in Melbourne.

Djokovic won his 15th major and seventh Australian Open title defeating Rafael Nadal in the final 6-3, 6-2, 6-3. It was a second Grand Slam title for twenty-one year old Osaka who now also becomes world number one after she defeated Petra Kvitova in the final 7-6 (7-2), 5-7, 6-4. Nicolas Mahut and Pierre-Hugues Herbert won the men’s doubles final 6-4, 7-6(1) and Samantha Stosur and Shuai Zhang claimed the women’s doubles title 6-3, 6-4.

In sad news for British Tennis former number one Andy Murray announced before the start of the tournament that he plans to retire after Wimbledon in the summer after a year of injuries if he makes it that far. The three-time Grand Slam champion, who is still struggling to recover from his hip surgery of twelve months ago, lost his first-round match against Roberto Bautista Agut 6-4, 6-4, 7-6, 7-6, 6-2.

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Information and photos used with courtesy of www.bbc.com/sport/tennis/

 

World Tennis News: Alexander Zverev Wins ATP Finals

Twenty-one year old Alexander Zverev from Germany stunned tennis fans worldwide when he outclassed world number one Novak Djokovic to win the 2018 season-ending ATP Finals at the O2 in London on Sunday.

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Third seed Zverev stopped hot favourite Djokovic, who at 31 is ten years his senior, winning his sixth ATP finals title beating him in straight sets 6-4, 6-3. Earlier in the round-robin stage of the competition he had lost to Djokovic in straight sets but then he beat Roger Federer in the semis which obviously gave him the confidence that he needed to win the event.

Zverev has made history in may ways by winning this event, firstly he is the first German player to win since Boris Becker in 1985 and the youngest champion since Djokovic in 2008. He is also the first player to beat both the top two seeds in the semi-finals and final since Andre Agassi in 1990 and the first player to beat both Djokovic and Federer in the same ATP Finals.

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Mike Bryan and new partner Jack Sock (previously played with brother Bob who has a hip injury) won the doubles title in a thrilling final coming back from a set down to clinch victory against French pair Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut 5-7, 6-1, 13-11.

Information and photos sourced from www.bbc.com/sport/tennis/ and Getty Images.

World Tennis News: Federer Wins 6th Australian Open Title

Roger Federer has joined a select group of players after winning his 20th Grand Slam title with his five-set victory over Marin Cilic to claim the Australian Open crown. He becomes the first male player to join Margaret Court, Serena Williams and Steffi Graf who have all won over twenty of more major singles titles.

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Swiss number one Federer, 36 won his sixth Australian Open title after beating Cilic in yesterday’s final in Melbourne 6-2, 6-7 (5-7), 6-3, 3-6. 6-1. With the Australian summer temperature’s soaring the final was played under the roof of the Rod Laver Arena in the air-conditioning amid some controversy as it’s an outdoor tournament.

Federer told BBC Sport, “It’s a dream come true and the fairytale continues.” he added, “I’ve won three slams now in 12 months. I can’t believe it myself.”

Over in the Women’s event it was a dream come true for Caroline Wozniacki from Denmark who won her first Grand Slam title as well as regaining her World Number One  position. Second seed Wozniacki beat Simona Halep from Romania in the final 7-6 (7-2), 3-6, 6-4 to finally win her first major title after forty-three attempts.

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Six-time champion Novak Djokovic, who was defending his 2017 title, was beaten in the quarters by Chung Hyeon from Korea 7-6 (7-4) 7-5 7-6 (7-3). Hyeon became the first Korean to qualify for a Grand Slam quarter-final. Fellow 2017 champion Serena Williams took the decision not to compete in this year’s event after having her first child near the end of 2017.

British number two Kyle Edmund played his best Grand Slam event to date before his hopes were dashed by eventual runner-up  Cilic who defeated him in straight sets 6-2, 7-6 (7-4), 6-2 in their semi-finals encounter. British number one Andy Murray was forced to withdraw from the tournament due to a hip operation and fellow British number one Johanna Konta, who was ninth seed, had a shock second round defeat by American Bernarda Pera 6-4 7-5, this win was only Pera’s second win at Grand Slam level.

Over in the doubles, Mate Pavic celebrated becoming a double champion after winning both the Men’s and Mixed titles with his respective partners. In the Men’s event Pavic and partner Oliver Marach beat eleventh seeds Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah from Columbia 6-4, 6-4 while in the Mixed him and partner Gabriela Dabrowski beat Rohan Bopanna and Timea Babos 2-6, 6-4 [11-9]. It was not all disappointment for Babos however as she had already won the Women’s title with partner Kristina Mladenovic. The duo beat the Russian pairing of Ekaterina Makarova and Elena Vesnina 6-4, 6-3 in the final.

Information used courtesy of BBC Sport and photos from ausopen.com/

 

 

 

 

World Tennis News: Australian Open 2018 Preview

The first Grand Slam of the 2018 tennis season, The Australian Open will be played in Melbourne from 15th – 28th January. The world’s top players will be in action at the newly upgrade Melbourne Park battling it out on court to lift the first Grand Slam trophy of the year.

o_redevelopment_pre_08012018_05Defending Men’s champions Roger Federer will be back in action this year, hoping to win his sixth Australia Open championship title. Seven time champion and 2017 winner Serena Williams, who is back on court after giving birth to her daughter Alexis Olympia, has sadly withdrawn from this year’s event. Williams played her first match since giving birth at the beginning of September on 30th December at the Mubadala World Tennis Championships in Abu Dhabi. After losing that exhibition match against current French Open Champion Jelena Ostapenko 2–6, 6-3, [5–10] she decided to withdraw from the Australian Open

After competing in Abu Dhabi I realized that although I am super close, I’m not where I personally want to be.” Williams said, “Even though I am disappointed about it, I’ve decided not to compete in the Australian Open this year. 

Former champion (2009) Rafael Nadal is back at the top of the World rankings and looking to win another Grand Slam title after losing to Federer in last year’s final. Six time champion Novak Djokovic will also be biting at Federer’s heels for another crack at the title. The Women’s event is wide open after Williams withdrawal but there are plenty looking to talk their place on the podium.

In disappointing news for patrotic tennis fans British number one and former World number one Andy Murray, who is actually in Melbourne after hip surgery in the city, will not be competing this year. His subsequent post-op recovery and rehabilitation will see him off court in competition mode for some time, maybe even until the summer’s grass court season. Murray, who has now dropped to 16th in the world rankings, has been dogged with injury since last year’s Wimbledon Championships when he last won a competitive match.

99513070_murray_insta.jpgMurray, pictured with his coach Jamie Delgado, after his hip surgery this week in Melbourne (Source: Andy Murray Official Instagram page)

Murray said in an interview with the BBC, “I’m not finished playing tennis yet. I’m going to be competing at the highest level again,” he added, “I’m very optimistic about the future – the surgeon is very happy about how it went.”

British interests now lies elsewhere with eyes trained on British number one and tenth seed Johanna Konta who has enjoyed success in both her previous Australian Open campaigns. Konta, who was forced to retire from the quarters in the Brisbane International last week due to hip problems, is in Sydney where she hoped to defend her 2017 Sydney International title. Things didn’t go to plan for the defending champion who was beaten in the first round by Agnieszka Radwanska 6-3, 7-5 to in a repeat of last year’s final.

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British No.2 Kyle Edmund also got to the quarters of the Brisbane event but has withdrawn from this week’s Auckland Open to assess his ankle injury ahead of the Australian Open. Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares who were runners-up at the Qatar ExxonMobil Open in Doha and are now in Adelaide to compete for Team International in the World Tennis Challenge ahead of the Australian Open where they won the doubles title in 2016.

For a full player line-up, schedules and all the latest news ahead and during the tournament visit www.ausopen.com

Photos and information used courtesy of www.ausopen.comwww.lta.org.uk and www.bbc.com/sport/tennis/ Featured image used courtesy of www.ausopen.com/news-media/

World Tennis News: Federer Wins Eighth Wimbledon Title

Another Wimbledon Championships is over after a great fortnight of tennis in SW19 that saw third seed Roger Federer (3) became the first man to win Wimbledon a record eight times.

b_aerial_778_140717-2 Federer, who last won the prestigious in 2012, defeated an injured and emotional Marin Cilic (7) from Croatia 6-3, 6-1, 6-4 to become the oldest man in the Open Era to win at the All England Club. This latest victory takes him to an impressive total of nineteen Grand Slam titles with Rafael Nadal behind on fifteen.

b_federer_1117_160717_jm.jpgWorld and British number one Andy Murray (1) struggled with a hip injury and crashed out of this year’s Wimbledon Championships in the quarter-final defeated by Sam Querrey (24) in five sets 6-3, 4-6, 7-6(7-4), 1-6, 1-6. His exit was swiftly followed by Women’s British number one Johanna Konta (6) in the semis who lost to five-time champion Venus Williams (10) 6-4, 6-2.

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Spain’s Garbine Muguruza (14) beat Williams in Saturday’s ladies final 7-5, 6-0 to win her first Wimbledon title.

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 It wasn’t all bad news for the British players however with top seeds Jamie Murray picking up the Mixed Doubles title with his partner Martina Hingis beating unseeded fellow Brit Heather Watson and her partner Henri Kontinen 6-4, 6-4 in the final.

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Two more titles for British players came in the wheelchair competition. Britain’s Jordanne Whiley and her partner Yui Kamiji won their fourth successive Wimbledon women’s wheelchair doubles title after beating Marjolein Buis and Diede de Groot (2) 2-6, 6-3, 6-0. Defending champions Alfie Hewett and Gordon Reid (2) beat top seeds Stephane Houdet and Nicolas Peifer from France  6-7(5-7), 7-5, 7-6(7-3) to claim their second consecutive Wimbledon men’s wheelchair doubles title.

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 All photos used with courtesy of www.wimbledon.com

 

 

World Tennis News: French Open Results

The French Open title has eluded World and British number one Andy Murray again this year after he was beaten by third seed Stanislas Wawrinka in their five set semi-final encounter. Murray lost after battling against Wawrinka for over four hours 6-7 (6-8), 6-3, 5-7, 7-6 (7-3) in a reverse of their 2016 semi-final meeting where Murray was the victor.

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In the run up to the semis Murray beat Andrey Kuznetsov in the first round 6-4, 4-6, 6-2, 6-0, Martin Klizan in round two 6-7, 6-2, 6-2, 7-6 followed by Juan Martin del Potro 7-6, 7-5, 6-0 in the third round. He then beat fourth round opponent Karen Khachanov 6-3, 6-4, 6-4, and had a tough match against Kei Nishikori 2-6, 6-1, 7-6, 6-1 in the quarter finals.

Wawrinka’s success was thwarted in the final by former number one Rafael Nadal who made history on court in Paris by winning a record 10th French Open title. Nadal won 6-2, 6-3, 6-1 to claim his 15th major title and entered the history books as the first person in the Open era to have won a Grand Slam tournament ten times.

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In the women’s event there was a major shock as twenty year old unseeded player Jelena Ostapenko battled to defeat third seed Simona Halep 4-6, 6-4, 6-3. Not only did she win the French Open title but also became Latvia’s first Grand Slam champion at the French Open. She also made history as the first unseeded woman to win at the Roland Garros event since 1933, prior to this title she had never won a Tour-level tournament before and was playing in only her eighth Grand Slam. British number one Johanna Konta suffered a shock defeat in the first round after losing against Hsieh Su-wei 1-6, 7-6 (7-2), 6-4.

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In other tennis news, British number two Heather Watson lost in the final of the Surbiton Trophy to Magdalena Rybarikova from Slovakia 6-4, 7-5. British number three and top seed at Nottingham Open Dan Evans has been forced to pulled out of the tournament with an injury. Fellow Brit Laura Robson lost in  the first round at Nottingham to American Julia Boserup 6-3, 6-4, top seed Konta starts her campaign tomorrow alongside teammate Watson.

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Defending champion Murray will be back in action at Queen’s Club from 19th June hoping to add a sixth title to kick start his grass court season and in preparation for Wimbledon.

News and photos sourced from www.bbc.com/sport/tennis