Sign In   Register

Looking for Tennis and Racket Sports International News?

The RacketSTAR Tennis News Blog and Article Feed gives you up to the minute news and information about the Players and Sports Updates.

Food Court: Adventurous Brooksby Enjoys Frog Legs & Duck

Jenson Brooksby earned the biggest win of his career Thursday, when he upset Casper Ruud in the second round of the 2023 Australian Open. The 22-year-old will next meet countryman Tommy Paul. 

In 2022, Brooksby enjoyed his career-best season, including rising to 33 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings in June 2022. Should he beat Paul, Brooksby would tie his best Grand Slam result, which he reached at the 2021 US Open (R16, l. Djokovic).

A three-time finalist on Tour, the California native shared with ATPTour.com what he likes to cook and eat to prepare himself for competition.

[ATP APP]

If you were having some friends over for dinner, what would you cook and why? 
I actually do cook once in awhile. My roommate Cam and I sometimes like to cook together. I would say I would cook salmon and steak with brussel sprouts and veggies. With salmon and steak I can get my protein, it’s pretty healthy and we can share it.

Continue reading
Tags:

Four Years On, RBA Readies For An Epic Rematch With Murray

Editor's Note: This article was translated from ATPTour.com/es.

Four years ago, nobody could’ve imagined that Roberto Bautista Agut and Andy Murray would cross paths at the Australian Open again. In January 2019, the Briton had announced in a press conference that he would soon be saying farewell to professional tennis, and that it would likely be his last appearance at the season’s first Grand Slam.

That day, the Spaniard picked up his first win over the former No. 1 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings, 6-4, 6-4, 6-7(5), 6-7(4), 6-2 in a thrilling match that the Scot’s brother (Jamie) and mother (Judy) witnessed from his box. The crowd also made themselves known during the encounter.

“There was a Davis Cup atmosphere,” the Castellon native Bautista Agut recalled this Thursday, after progressing to the third round. “I dug really deep. I ended up winning the match and it gave me a lot of confidence to reach the quarters here in Australia.”

[ATP APP]

Continue reading
Tags:

Glasspool/Heliovaara Make Winning Start In Melbourne

After enjoying a career-best season this past year, including making their debut at the coveted Nitto ATP Finals, Lloyd Glasspool and Harri Heliovaara are showing no signs of slowing down.

The British-Finnish duo won their first event of 2023, the Adelaide International 1, and are now aiming for their maiden Grand Slam crown. The sixth seeds kicked off their Australian Open title quest Friday by taking down Nathaniel Lammons and Jackson Withrow 7-6(3), 6-3.

In other doubles action, 2022 Roland Garros champions Jean-Julien Rojer and Marcelo Arevalo fended off all six break points faced to oust Diego Hidalgo and Emil Ruusuvuori 6-1, 7-6(1).

[ATP APP]

Several first-round upsets occurred Friday, including French duo Sadio Doumbia and Fabien Reboul taking out ninth seeds Simone Bolelli and Fabio Fognini 6-3, 6-3. The Austrian tandem Alexander Erler and Lucas Miedler needed just one hour, nine minutes to get past 10th seeds Rohan Bopanna and Matthew Ebden 6-3, 7-5. Tomislav Brkic and Gonzalo Escobar defeated Jamie Murray and Michael Venus 7-6(5), 6-4.

Continue reading
Tags:

Sleepless In Vegas: Agassi Pulls All-Nighter To Watch Korda

Sebastian Korda delivered a special third-round performance on Friday to down two-time finalist Daniil Medvedev at the Australian Open. So special in fact, that it had an ATP legend in a different time zone glued to his screen in the middle of the night.

Andre Agassi has been a mentor to Korda for the past couple of years, during which the American has developed into one of the most exciting young players on the ATP Tour. After notching his maiden Grand Slam win against a Top 10 opponent on Rod Laver Arena, the 22-year-old revealed that the eight-time Grand Slam champion Agassi had stayed up until the early hours to watch but wouldn’t be hanging around to hear more about the post-match celebrations.

“He texted me. He's going to bed now,” said Korda when asked about the eight-time Grand Slam champion Agassi, who resides in Las Vegas, at his post-match press conference. “That's the last thing he sent me. 

“He's one of the most special people in my life. We started talking during COVID in 2020. He's been one of the biggest parts in my rise. Just overall just as a tennis player, as a human being. We spend a lot of time together. Yeah, he's very special to me.

As to be expected when playing a former World No. 1 and 15-time tour-level titlist, Korda was kept on his toes throughout Friday’s victory despite the straight-sets scoreline. Medvedev rallied from 1-4 in the first set and 2-4 in the third set to force tie-breaks in both, but Korda believes a new mental approach was the key to keeping his cool whenever the momentum began to shift.

Continue reading
Tags:

Medvedev Drops From Top 10 After Korda Defeat

Daniil Medvedev was aiming for his second major title and first Down Under this fortnight. Instead, he will leave the Australian Open with disappointment for a third straight year.

After almost tasting victory a year ago in Melbourne, before Rafael Nadal’s epic comeback, Medvedev won’t see the second week of this year’s tournament after Sebastian Korda upset the seventh seed 7-6(7), 6-3, 7-6(4) on Friday.

Despite the disappointment of an early round straight-sets defeat, Medvedev gave a clear cut answer explaining the loss.

[ATP APP]

“I think it was a match where he was just better than me,” Medvedev said in his post-match press conference. “Right now I'm struggling a little bit to win these kinds of matches against opponents that can play at a good level. That's what I have to find back.”

Continue reading
Tags:

Djokovic Meets Dimitrov At Australian Open As Murray Returns After Marathon

After an eventful first five days at the 2023 Australian Open, Saturday's action will narrow the men's singles field to 16 as the third round draws to a close.

Two men's matches feature on Rod Laver Arena — Novak Djokovic vs. Grigor Dimitrov and Alex de Minaur vs. Benjamin Bonzi — while Andy Murray takes on 24th seed Roberto Bautista Agut in a Margaret Court Arena evening match.

ATPTour.com breaks down some key contests on Day 6 in Melbourne.

[ATP APP]

[4] Novak Djokovic (SER) vs. [27] Grigor Dimitrov (BUL)

Djokovic hopes to repeat his heroics from the 2021 Australian Open, when he won the title despite dealing with an abdominal tear. Entering this year's event with a left hamstring injury, the Serbian has managed the problem well so far, even if he required a medical timeout during his four-set win against Enzo Couacaud on Friday.

Continue reading
Tags:

Tears & Triumph For Alexei Popyrin At The Australian Open

Australian Alexei Popyrin lost a heartbreaking three-setter to countryman Thanasi Kokkinakis last week in the first round of the Adelaide International 2. After a back-and-forth battle, Kokkinakis used the crowd to triumph 6-0, 6-7(5), 7-5 after a grueling two hours and 45 minutes.

While Kokkinakis thanked the crowd and bathed in the cheers of his home fans, Popyrin was left empty-handed. It was another devastating defeat for a talented 23-year-old who struggled to a 5-17 tour-level record in 2022.

As Popyrin walked up the ramp to depart the Memorial Drive facility, fans waited for the one-time ATP Tour titlist to sign autographs, which he did happily. Popyrin then began the five-minute walk to his hotel when he noticed a boy more than 10 metres away trying to take a selfie with the Australian in the background. Popyrin might have lost the match, but he was still a star to the boy.

[ATP APP]

The Sydney-native called the fan over to take a proper selfie and could not help but crack a smile. As tough as his loss was, all was not bad for the Aussie. And just more than a week later, things could not be more different.

Continue reading
Tags:

Classy Korda Cruises Past Medvedev In Australian Open Stunner

Sebastian Korda backed up his impressive start to 2023 by delivering a statement performance on Friday at the Australian Open, where he outplayed Daniil Medvedev for a 7-6(7), 6-3, 7-6(4) third-round victory.

The American struck the ball confidently from the first point against the seventh-seeded Medvedev. He broke the 2021 and 2022 Australian Open finalist in the first game and was a constant threat in return games, ultimately converting five out of 10 break points and holding his nerve in first and third-set tie-breaks to seal a fourth-round spot in style.

“It was an unbelievable match,” said Korda in his on-court interview. “I kind of knew what I had to do. I stuck with it even when I was going up and down with the emotions, but I’m thrilled right now, I played amazing, and it was an unbelievable match from me.”

With his two-hour, 59-minute win, Korda rose to No. 28 in the Pepperstone ATP Live Rankings and is now likely to set a new career-high after the Australian Open. Meanwhile defeat saw former World No. 1 Medvedev drop out of the Top 10 in the Live Rankings, with the 26-year-old currently at No. 12.

In his first tournament of 2023, Korda defeated Andy Murray and Jannik Sinner en route to the final of the Adelaide International 1, where he held championship point before falling in three sets to Novak Djokovic. Having now dispatched Medvedev for his first Grand Slam win against a Top 10 opponent, the 2018 Australian Open boys’ singles champion will be feeling confident as he prepares to face Hubert Hurkacz in the next round.

Continue reading
Tags:

Shelton Meets Koala & Wallaby; Now For Australian Open Round Three

Ben Shelton has looked at home at the Australian Open, where he is into the third round on his tournament debut. The #NextGenATP American is far away from home, though.

The 20-year-old is on his first international trip. Naturally, there was one thing he was excited to see in Australia.

“I definitely want to go see some animals,” Shelton said, before cracking yet another smile. “I don’t know if it’s at a zoo, but I want to see some koalas or kangaroos, something like that. I think that would be really cool.” 


Photo Credit: ATP
The zoo came to Shelton on Friday at Melbourne Park, where for two hours players were able to interact with a koala, snakes, wallabies, birds and possums. The American posed for photos with the koala and a wallaby.

The lefty will try to check off another first on Saturday when he attempts to reach the fourth round at a Grand Slam for the first time. Shelton will play Australian wild card Alexei Popyrin.

Tags:

Hurkacz Prevails In Five Against Shapovalov At Australian Open

Hubert Hurkacz withstood a mid-match revival from Denis Shapovalov on Friday to book his spot in the fourth round at the Australian Open for the first time. In a thrilling clash that swung one way and then the other, the Pole raised his level on serve in a tight fifth set to advance 7-6(3), 6-4, 1-6, 4-6, 6-3 after three hours and 40 minutes.

Competing in front of a full house on Margaret Court Arena, Hurkacz took early control, firing 18 winners across the first two sets to move ahead. However, Shapovalov refused to go away. The Canadian World No. 22 upped his level to force a decider, moving inside the baseline to strike his backhand with more precision and power as he forced Hurkacz deep.

In a tight fifth set, it was Hurkacz who regained momentum, though. The World No. 11 gained the only break of serve in the sixth game and won 91 per cent (20/22) of his first-serve points to improve to 4-1 in his ATP Head2Head series against Shapovalov.

“From two sets up, Denis then started to play some really good tennis,” Hurkacz said. “He is such a good competitor and player, so I hope you guys had fun watching us compete.

“I needed to find some rhythm on my serve. I knew I would get a look on the return games, but I was just trying to stay in there. It was really tough. He was playing really well. It was super tough but it was super fun to play. The crowd was giving a lot of energy.”

Continue reading
Tags:

Dimitrov On Djokovic Showdown: 'I Have To Prove Something To Myself'

Novak Djokovic suffered a scare Thursday evening in the second round of the Australian Open. The Serbian’s movement was noticeably limited at points during the clash and his upper left leg was wrapped.

But the nine-time champion survived and advanced to the third round, where he will face Grigor Dimitrov at Melbourne Park. Will the 2017 Nitto ATP Finals champion be able to spring the upset?

The former World No. 3 knows he faces a tough task. Djokovic has won nine of their 10 ATP Head2Head meetings, with the Bulgarian’s lone victory coming in 2013.

“The mental aspect leans more to his side and he’s always been able to get me in tight moments, I’m not hiding this,” Dimitrov told ATPTour.com. “Good things can happen. I’ve been on Tour for so long. It’s the same thing for him, how many times has he been out there and he has to prove it to himself? It’s the same thing for me.

“Yes [they have] been tight matches. I have to prove something to myself. Now, it’s the same player, different match.”

Continue reading
Tags:

Felix Fires Into Melbourne Fourth Round

Felix Auger-Aliassime continued his battling progress through the Australian Open draw on Friday with a 6-1, 3-6, 6-1, 6-4 win against 28th seed Francisco Cerundolo. After coming from behind in each of his first two Melbourne victories, the Canadian never trailed in John Cain Arena, advancing to the fourth round for the third straight year Down Under.

The sixth seed made a blistering start by racing to a 5-0 lead, in stark contrast to his previous matches against Vasek Pospisil and Alex Molcan, in which he lost the opening set — as well as set two in the second round against Molcan.

"I had a great start compared to my two first rounds, so this was better," he said post-match. "It kind of gave me a little cushion. Against tough opponents there's going to be ups and downs. I was playing a bit tight and not going for it in the second set, and he did, so credit to him.

"I'm happy with the way I turned things around and I think the last two sets were probably some of my best ones so far this tournament."

Sealed with a ninth ace on the day.

We'll be seeing @felixtennis on Sunday!@wwos@espn@Eurosport@wowowtennis#AusOpen#AO2023 pic.twitter.com/hxJvrQ820a

Continue reading
Tags:

Tsitsipas Sets Sinner Showdown In Australian Open Fourth Round

Stefanos Tsitsipas extended his perfect set record on Friday at the 2023 Australian Open to 9-0 by moving past Tallon Griekspoor into the fourth round. In a 6-2, 7-6(5), 6-3 victory, the Greek saved a set point late in set two before powering through the finish in Rod Laver Arena.

The win sets up a Sunday showdown with Jannik Sinner, a rematch of last year's Melbourne quarter-final that was dominated by the Greek.

"I enjoyed fighting my way through today," Tsitsipas said in his on-court interview. "It wasn't easy at times. I had the crowd with me, as always. It's always a great sensation when I'm out here."

[ATP APP]

Against Griekspoor, Tsitsipas saved the only break point he faced, which doubled as a set point for the Dutchman at 5-6 in the second. On return, the World No. 4's depth troubled his opponent throughout the two-hour, eight-minute match. He finished with four breaks on seven chances.

Continue reading
Tags:

Sinner Roars Back From Two Sets Down

Jannik Sinner completed a comprehensive turnaround Friday when he battled back against Marton Fucsovics to return to the Australian Open fourth round. In his first Grand Slam comeback from two sets down, the Italian dominated the late stages of a 4-6, 4-6, 6-1, 6-2, 6-0 victory, doing his part to set up a potential Melbourne rematch with Stefanos Tsitsipas.

The 15th seed ran out a comfortable winner in the end as he found the range on his explosive forehand in the final three sets after an error-strewn start to the match. Fucsovics maintained a good level for much of the three-hour, 33-minute match but could not cope with Sinner's attacking play once the Italian hit top form.

"For sure the first two sets were very tough for me," Sinner said before thanking the Margaret Court Arena crowd. "Obviously I had to change something in my game after the two sets. I was feeling the ball quite well in the beginning, but the final shots I was missing a little bit. Tactically I was not so good."

[ATP APP]

After Sinner cruised to a 5-0 lead on the way to winning set three, he flirted with danger one more time when he fell behind 0-2 in the fourth. But a loose service game from his Hungarian opponent handed the initiative back, and Sinner pressed home his advantage by ripping through 12 straight games to race through the finish line.

Continue reading
Tags:

Day 5 Preview: Medvedev, Felix, Tsitsipas In Action

Daniil Medvedev continues his title quest and Felix Auger-Aliassime looks to carry his momentum from his second-round escape when Day 5 of an unpredictable Australian Open dawns on Friday.

Poland’s Hubert Hurkacz, who survived in five sets to oust Lorenzo Sonego on Wednesday, will face another test: 20th seed Denis Shapovalov. Stefanos Tsitsipas hasn’t dropped a set this tournament and the Greek looks to continue his success and quest to reach World No. 1 this fortnight.

ATPTour.com looks at four key matchups on Friday’s action-packed card at Melbourne Park.

View Schedule | View Singles Draw | View Doubles Draw

[ATP APP]

Continue reading
Tags:

Koolhof/Skupski To Meet Tsitsipas Bros In R2

Top seeds Wesley Koolhof and Neal Skupski made a fast start to open men’s doubles action at the 2023 Australian Open. The Dutch-British duo will next clash against the Tsitsipas brothers: Stefanos and his younger brother Petros.

Koolhof and Skupski displayed a dominant performance Thursday, winning 22/25 points off their first serves to take down Alexander Bublik and John-Patrick Smith 6-1, 6-2.

In 2022, Koolhof and Skupski competed in 10 Tour-level finals and collected a season-leading seven titles. Now their eyes are set on their first major crown.

[ATP APP]

The Tsitsipas brothers rallied from a set down to oust Ramkumar Ramanathan and Miguel Angel Reyes-Varela 3-6, 7-5, 6-3 and now look to upset the World No. 1 team in the Pepperstone ATP Doubles Live Rankings.

Continue reading
Tags:

Two Hours From Daybreak, Murray Seals Epic Win Over Kokkinakis

Andy Murray has clinched his second consecutive five-set win in the early hours of Friday morning at the Australian Open, this time rallying from two-sets-to-love down for a record 11th time in his career.

Finishing at 4:05 a.m., just two hours from daybreak in Melbourne, the former World No. 1 rallied past home favourite Thanasi Kokkinakis 4-6, 6-7(4), 7-6(5), 6-3, 7-5, advancing after five hours and 45 minutes in the longest match of his career. Murray withstood 102 winners, including 37 aces, from the South Australian.

"It was unbelievable I managed to turn that around," said Murray, a five-time Australian Open finalist. "Thanasi was serving unbelievably and hitting his forehand huge. I don't know how I managed to get through it. I did start playing better as the match went on, but yeah, I have a big heart.

"I now am outright the most wins coming from two-sets-to-love down, so I have done it before. I have experience of it. I just rely on that experience and drive. That fight and love for the game and competing and my respect for this event and the competition and that is why I kept going."

With a lively Australian crowd watching, Murray demonstrated his mental and physical strength for the second time this week, having edged Matteo Berrettini in a four-hour, 52-minute five-set thriller in the first round. The Scot battled back from 2-5 in the third set to gain a foothold in the match, before he continued to play aggressively in the fourth and fifth sets to earn the 11th win of his career from two-sets-to-love down, more than any other active player.

Continue reading
Tags:

'Worried' Djokovic Says 'My Injury Is Not Ideal'

Novak Djokovic advanced to the third round of the Australian Open on Thursday at Melbourne Park, but the Serbian did not move through unscathed.

Having entered the tournament with a left hamstring injury suffered in Adelaide, the former World No. 1 was already on alert. But against Enzo Couacaud, Djokovic had his left leg wrapped and had moments in which his movement was visibly compromised.

“I’m glad that I managed to win this match, of course, in four sets. Credit to Enzo for playing well, very well, I think in the second set. A lot of things were happening during this match. It was obvious him and I had some injuries, medical timeouts,” Djokovic said. “My situation with my injury is not ideal. I obviously don't want to go too deep into that. I wish that some things were different with the way I feel with my leg, but it is what it is. I have to take it day by day.”

Djokovic has battled through physical issues before and lifted the trophy at the end of the tournament. But the nine-time Australian Open champion admitted that the injury is at the very least at the forefront of his mind. He explained that he is “not practising basically” on his days off between matches.

“I am worried. I mean, I cannot say that I'm not. I have reason to be worried. But at the same time I have to accept the circumstances and try to adjust myself with my team. My physio and medical team has been doing everything possible so that I can be able to play every match,” Djokovic said. “There's not much more to talk about. There's two choices: leave it or keep going. So I'm going to keep going. I'm going to try to play and compete with, of course, a great player [Grigor] Dimitrov in a couple days' time.”

Continue reading
Tags:

Djokovic Survives Injury Scare & Couacaud To Advance At Australian Open

Novak Djokovic suffered a scare in more ways than one Thursday evening at the Australian Open. However, the nine-time champion persevered to reach the third round at Melbourne Park.

Despite struggling with his left leg, which was wrapped, the Serbian clawed past Frenchman Enzo Couacaud 6-1, 6-7(5), 6-2, 6-0. Djokovic appeared in difficulty after losing the second-set tie-break, but immediately refocussed to charge through the rest of the match after three hours and four minutes.

The Serbian is chasing a record-tying 22nd Grand Slam trophy this fortnight and will reclaim No. 1 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings if he wins the title. The 35-year-old will keep his focus directly in front of him, though, with former World No. 3 Grigor Dimitrov looming in the third round.

[ATP APP]

There were moments in the match against Couacaud when advancing did not seem a sure thing. As the second set wore on, Djokovic became more hampered by his left hamstring injury. Playing with heavy strapping, the fourth seed winced after stretching for a ball at 4-4, calling for a medical timeout when trailing 4-5.

Continue reading
Tags:

Ruud: Brooksby ‘Had An Answer To All The Questions’

Incentive was high for Casper Ruud at this year’s Australian Open. If the Norwegian had lifted his maiden Grand Slam title in Melbourne, he would have risen to No. 1 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings for the first time.

However, the second seed will now have to wait for both after losing against American Jenson Brooksby in four sets in the second round on Thursday.

“It's a tough matchup for me and I know it's going to be for many years probably,” Ruud said when reflecting on his defeat. “I will try to learn from it. I think that he played great today. I mean, didn't make many errors at all.

“I didn't feel like I played particularly bad or not at the level that I wanted to play, but he just ended up winning many of the longer rallies and had an answer to all the questions that I asked him.”

[ATP APP]

Continue reading
Tags:

RacketStar.com