Rafael Nadal definitely has some problems this season. His performance is under last season's level and even on clay court that he dominated so far things don't look well. David Ferrer eliminated Rafael Nadal in his attempt to regain Monte-Carlo title taken last year by Novak Djokovic (Nadal won 8 titles in a row in Monte-Carlo and this is his earliest elimination on tournament in 11 years). Ferrer defeated Nadal in straight sets 7-6 (1), 6-4 and reached Saturday semifinal match against Stanislas Wawrinka.
At the very beginning of the match Ferrer announced a surprise with early lead of 2:0 when he took the first break point. "The king of clay" wasn't able to hide his nervousness during the match and it was fully transferred to his play. David Ferrer deservedly won the match and opened his way to the semi-finals, which he will play tomorrow against Stanislas Wawrinka who eliminated Milos Raonic also in straight sets 7-6(5), 6-2. This is the first semi-final for wawrinka since winning the Australian Open.
With this early elimination Nadal will lose 420 ATP points in the rankings because he defended last year's finale. So Novak Djokovic has a chance to further reduce the backlog but to achieve it he must to defend last year's title and that won't be easy given that tomorrow he plays in semi-final against Roger Federer.
It's not that we are bragging but we predicted correctly 3 out of 4 quarterfinal matches in Monte-Carlo. So in QFS we are going to have:
Stanislas Wawrinka v Milos Raonic
Rafael Nadal v David Ferrer
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga v Roger Federer
Guillermo Garcia-Lopez v Novak Djokovic
All four matches are tomorrow on Central Court and we can expect nothing less than interesting plays. But, as mentioned few days ago, most probably Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic will seize the Final. Nadal just took his 300th clay court win for QFS and Novak Djokovic is in 2012 rhythm with 12th consecutive win. What do you think who is going to take this year's Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters, Nadal or Djokovic or maybe someone else like Stanislas Wawrinka (who badly needs Australian Open re-happen) and Roger Federer? Leave your comments if you have an idea.
The Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters begins tomorrow and tennis fans from all over the world will be eagerly waiting to see how their favorite players perform in the first clay court Grand Slam of 2014. Nadal (8 time champion of Monte-Carlo) and Djokovic (last year winner) are seen as finalists but as always nothing will be easy in this clay court season.
Both Nadal and Djokovic should have an easy path toward quarterfinals where is expected to meet David Ferrer and Tomas Berdych. Two other quarterfinals most probable will be Stanislas Wawrinka - Milos Raonic (or Tommy Robredo) and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga - Roger Federer.
But is it going to be like this? By the development on other 2014 season tournaments surprises could easily happen. Best candidates for surprises are Grigor Dimitrov who loves to play against Rafael Nadal (take this year Australian Open match and Nadal who barely slipped by Dimitrov), then Fernando verdasco and Nicolas almagro who both can give great play on clay court (after all Spaniards are best on clay courts) and maybe Fabio Fognini who brouth victory over Great Britain in last weekend Davis Cup Quarterfinals also on clay court.
Please leave your comments and expectations for Monte-Carlo finalists and winners. Here are the draws for the upcoming Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters.
It's official, Roger Federer is back at Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters after 2 years of absence. It is a great news which is brought to us by officials of Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters tournament.
This is the first Masters of this year clay court season which has started on 7th April with two 250-value tournaments in Casabllanca and Houston. Monte-Carlo is favourite tournement of Rafael Nadal who has consecutively won 8 times (2005-2012) but last year the winner was Djokovic who will have a tough job to keep 1000 ATP points.
Besides Federer, nadal and Djokovic we will have opportunity to see Stanislas Wawrinka, David Ferrer, Tomas Berdych, Richard Gasquet, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Gael Monfils.
Clay court season lasts through April and May and consists 12 tournaments of which three are Masters Serie tournaments, besides Monte-Carlo also Madrid and Rome and one Grand Slam (Roland Garros). Because of the charm of slow pitch and top players who need to invest large ammount of effort in each point clay court season is favourite amongst tennis fans all over the world. We will enjoy it together this year with interesting details envolved in tournaments.
The Draw for Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters will be on Saturday 12th April at 12.00 pm. Total of 56 players will be in Monte-Carlo.
The third day of the Davis Cup quarter-finals was marked by return of home teams that managed to catch up from 1:2 in the first two days and turn the final outcome at 3:2. Thus, beside the Czechs who determined the winner on Saturday, in the semi-finals are going to be Switzerland, Italy and France.
(Ariake Coliseum, Tokyo) Japan vs Czech Republic - 0:5
In Japan, everything was resolved yesterday, and today the Czechs just routinely ended the tie and swept Japan 5:0. At the moment Czechs are too strong for Japan, at least for Japan without Kei Nishikori. Lukas Rosol defeated Yasutaka Uchiyama 6:3, 3:6, 6:4 and Jiri Vesely who stepped in for Radek Stepanek defeated Taro Daniel 6:4, 6:4 in a match that wasn't deciding anything. The Czechs will play the semi-final against French who managed to squeeze by Germany.
(Tennis Club Napoli, Naples) Italy vs Great Britain - 3:2
Andy Murray didn't have the strenght to force a third victory for Great Britain and lead the British to semi-finals. Same as he brought two victories for Britain on Saturday, today the star was Fabio Fognini for Italian team after defeating Murray 6:3, 6:3, 6:4. In the fifth and decisive rubber Andreas Seppi clinched the tie and defeated James Ward 6:4, 6:3, 6:4. So, Italians are going to meet Switzerland in September in Davis Cup semi-final.
(Palexpo, Geneva) Switzerland vs Kazakhstan - 3:2
Switzerland recovered from surprises arranged by Kazakhs in the first two days of the tie. Stanislas Wawrinka has been under increasing pressure today since he lost his opening singles on Friday and the doubles on Saturday. Wawrinka again started nervously and lost the opening set but managed to turn the course of the match with 6:7(4), 6:4, 6:4, 6:4 in win over Mikhail Kukushkin. Then Roger Federer sealed the fate of Kazakhs in decisive match against Andrey Golubev 7:6(0), 6:2, 6:3. For sure, the Swiss expected easier job, but it is also certain that today they are thrilled for reaching semi-final with Italy.
(Palais Des Sports Jean Weille, Nancy) France vs Germany - 3:2
The French were able to do the almost impossible comeback after 0:2 on Friday. This is just the eighth 0:2 comeback in the history of the Davis Cup World Group and the French managed to do that for the fourth time. In the fourth rubber Jo-Wilfried Tsonga defeated Tobias Kamke 6:3, 6:2, 6:4 and then in the decisive fifth rubber Gael Monfils stepped instead of Julian Benneteau and it turned out to be best possible decision. Monfils secured a victory over Peter Gojowczyk 6:1, 7:6(0), 6:2 and provided semi-final against Czechs in September.
After second day of Davis Cup Quarterfinals nothing is over yet except for Japan. Other Davis Cup teams have a good chance to get through to the semifinals. Once more we witnessed all the beauty of tennis and that nothing is over before match finishes. Switzerland team (Federer and Wawrinka were stunned once more from Kazakhstan in second day doubles) and Andy Murray provided two victories for Great Britain with his stunning play.
(Ariake Coliseum, Tokyo) Japan vs Czech Republic - 0:3
Tatsuma Ito and Yasutaka Uchiyama couldn't do anything better than 4:6, 4:6, 4:6 against Lukas Rosol and Radek Stepanek giving Czech Republic unreachable 3:0 for the Davis Cup World Group semifinals which they will play in September against the winner of quarterfinal between France and Germany (at the moment Germany looks closer to this semifinal meeting).
"This was our first Davis Cup doubles together. We did well and found our range together. We had it under control from the first set," - said Stepanek. Rosol continued - "We finished the sets strongly today and are happy to be going to the semi-finals. It's always nice to have more players, but I think Radek and I played really well this weekend." It seems that Czech Republic needs only Stepanek and Rosol to defend Davis Cup title.
(Tennis Club Napoli, Naples) Italy vs Great Britain - 1:2
Second day in Naples didn't bring anything good to Italians. Andy Murray continued his yesterdays' match against Andreas Seppi and completed it with winning eight of 11 games. Final result of this match was 6:4, 7:5, 6:3 for leveling the tie at 1:1. It was Murray's 19th straight singles rubber win.
But it wasn't all that we saw today of Murray because only two hours later he returned with Colin Fleming to play against Italy doubles Simone Bolelli and Fabio Fognini and won one more match for Great Britain. Final result of doubles match was 6:3, 6:2, 3:6, 7:5. Tomorrow Murray has a chance to record a third win of this tie and to bring semifinals to Britain first which would be the first Davis Cup semifinal appearance since 1981. He will play against Fabio Fognini who yesterday defeated James Ward. The final rubber of the tie will be between Andreas Seppi and James Ward.
(Palexpo, Geneva) Switzerland vs Kazakhstan - 1:2
Once more Switzerland was stunned by Kazakhstan. Kazakhstan duo Aleksandr Nedovyesov and Andrey Golubev defeated Roger Federer and Stanislas Wawrinka 6:4, 7:6(5), 4:6, 7:6(6). Wawrinka simply did not perform as expected and Roger couldn't put his play in higher gear. Wawrinka continued his nervous play he already showed yesterday and Kazakhs exploited it well. Since Andrey Golubev and Aleksandr Nedovyesov are competing together for the first time it makes their win even more significant.
Kazakhstan has opportunity to book a spot in the semifinals for the first time. Mikhail Kukushkin will have the chance to make this historical win and decide the tie against Stanislas Wawrinka in Sunday. If he doesn't do it deciding match will be between Roger Federer and Andrey Golubev.
(Palais Des Sports Jean Weille, Nancy) France vs Germany - 1:2
Photo: DavisCup.com/Paul Zimmer
France will try to do something almost impossible and to become just the eighth team to rally from a 0:2 deficit in the history of Davis Cup World Group. After Julien Benneteau and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga were defeated by Tobias Kamke and Peter Gojowczyk in Friday it looked hopeless for the French. But then Michael Llodra and Julien Benneteau stepped on the scene and brought a glimmer of hope to France that they still could reach the semifinals. They won doubles rubber against Tobias Kamke and Andre Begemann 6:1, 7:6(5), 4:6, 7:5 in almost three and a half hours. This way Benneteau avenged to Kamke for losing yesterday in straight sets.
In Sunday Jo-Wilfried Tsonga will have hard task to win over Kamke and to ensure deciding fifth rubber between Benneteau and Gojowczyk. So far French stayed alive and they are happy because of that as Llodra said.
First day of Davis Cup Quarterfinals gave us some very exciting matches, especially in German lead over France and tie between Switzerland and Kazakhstan. Also, we have interesting development in Italy and Japan too where Italy is in the lead over Great Britain and Czech Republic over Japan.
(Ariake Coliseum, Tokyo) Japan vs Czech Republic - 0:2
Czech republic is in 2:0 lead over Japan after first day in Tokyo. Japan is playing whithout their best player Kei Nishikori who got injured few days ago in Miami. Radek Stepanek (#47) and Lukas Rosol(#40) recorded wins over Tatsuma Ito (#146) and Taro Daniel (#190). Stepanek performed better than Tatsuma Ito and won 6:7(5), 7:6(5), 6:1, 7:5 in the opening singles match which lasted almost four hours. This was 32nd Davis Cup match for Stepanek who had 18 aces and 42 winners in his win. Rosol also had tough job against Taro Daniel 6:4 6:4 3:6 4:6 6:2. It could be expected that Czechs will be better than Japan (especially because they play without Nishikori) and give their best to reach Davis Cup semifinals for the third time in a row. We will see if Japan is going to be better in doubles (Ito and Yasutaka Uchiyama against Stepanek and Jiri Vesely).
(Tennis Club Napoli, Naples) Italy vs Great Britain - 1:0
In Italy we have interesting development. First rain delayed the start of the opening singles between Fabio Fognini and James Ward. Then Fabio Fognini (#13) defeated James Ward (#161) 6:4, 2:6, 6:4, 6:1. Ward gave his best to trouble Fognini and he managed it for some time, but Fognini was in better shape and he won the match for little less than three hours. In second match Murray (#8) plays against Andreass Seppi (#34). This match is still on because it was stopped due to low light on the court and will be continued tomorrow at 10.30 am local time. Current result is 6:4, 5:5 and in the last todays game Murray succeded to save four set points and stay in second set of this match. Italy is hoping to reach the semi-finals for the first time since 1998 and they are looking their chance in simple fact that they won 10 out of last 11 meetings whit Great Britain.
(Palexpo, Geneva) Switzerland vs Kazakhstan - 1:1
It didn't started well for Switzerland today. In the opening singles Stanislas Wawrinka (#3) lost against Andrey Golubev (#64) 6:7(5), 2:6, 6:3, 6:7(5). Wawrinka was nervous and couldn't perform better in his losing today. But, luckily for Switzerland they have great Roger Federer (#4) who made crowd to go crazy in his victory over Mikhail Kukushkin (#56), 6:4, 6:4, 6:2 in less than 2 hours. This will give Swiss team necessary confidence for following course of this quarterfinal match against Kazakhstan.
Photo: AP Photo/Keystone, Salvatore Di Nolfi
"We've just got to start it all over again. That's what I told Stan. The weekend has only just started and that's how I saw it going into my singles match, said Federer for DavisCup.com.
Many expect that after today's heavy start the rest of the battle will be in Swiss team favor. Let's wait and see. In their meeting in 2010 Kazakhstan totaled Switzerland 5-0 and they are hoping to reach Davis Cup semi-finals for the first time.
(Palais Des Sports Jean Weille, Nancy) France vs Germany - 0:2
The biggest surprise of the first day is made by Germany which is in the lead over France 2:0. Both Tobias Kamke (#96) and Peter Gojowczyk (#119) defeated host players Julien Benneteau (#50) and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (#12). Kamke performed superb in his win over Julien Benneteau 7:6(8), 6:3, 6:2 and gave Germany a 1:0 lead over his hosts. This was his first Davis Cup victory. After that his colleague Peter Gojowczyk stunned Tsonga 5:7, 7:6(3), 3:6, 7:6(8), 8:6. Tsonga had match point, 88 winners and 36 aces but even that couldn't help him and he lost after more than 4 hours of play. Germany is looking to beat France for the first time since 1938 and to reach the semi-finals for the first time since 2007. So far Germany won Davis Cup three times.
Photo: DavisCup.com/Paul Zimmer
Two world's best tennis players Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic took advantage of a break in the ATP calendar to support their favourite clubs.
It is known that Rafa is big fan of Real Madrid, which on Wednesday evening at Santiago Bernabeu played the first match of the Champions League quarterfinal against Borussia Dortmund.
Nadal followed the match from royal lodge and brought luck to Real Madrid for 3:0 against Borussia.
On the other side Novak has grabbed the first opportunity between tournaments to come to Belgrade and once again proves that he is Red Star fan. He got standing ovation from Red Star fans who were chanting " One is Novak Djokovic ." Watch the video.
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Russian tennis player Maria Sharapova decided to go to vacation in Cancun, Mexico and take a little break from tennis commitments. She and her friends enjoy beautiful weather on the beach in Cancun.
But Maria forgot that there is always a paparazzi photographer that follows her every move and she almost showed more than she intended.
Maria recently lost semi-finals in Miami from Serena Williams, so this journey was the right way to recover from it. We wish her more vacations like this one.
According to information we've received from one of the nearest Murray associates Andy Murray has decided to withdraw from tennis!!! This decision was made after a series of difficulties which he had lately and poor shape since the last year Wimbledon final.
Our source says that "this decision is not sudden because Murray was thinking about it for some time now and finally decided to retire from tennis after a quarterfinal match in Davis Cup, which these days is playing against Italy. Most likely immediately after the Davis Cup quarterfinal he will inform broader public of his decision. Also his last match development against Djokovic prompted the decision."
Many have said that Stanislas Wawrinka broke "The Big Four" (Nadal , Djokovic, Federer and Murray) , but it seems that Murray 's decision will directly contribute to that.
When asked what are Murray's future plans our source said "Murray is known about his passion for golf which plays passionately and he has already secured "wildcard" for Zurich Classic of New Orleans golf tournament." We also tried to ask Murray personally about this but we couldn't reach him today.
More information about this incredible news we will have tomorrow.
Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal have not met in 2014. and the finals of Miami is their first match in this year. Last time they played at 2013 Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in London when Djokovic won 6:3, 6:4. Today they had their 40th head to head, in which Novak was in search for his fourth title at Sony Open Tennis and Rafa for the first trophy in Miami and in this year.
Photo: AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee
They both entered the game fresh with a special curiosity: Kei Nishikori surrendered semifinal match to Djokovic and Tomas Berdych to Nadal. This has never happened in the ATP Open at this stage of the competition.
It seems that today only Djokovic entered tennis court in Miami because it looked like Nadal is somewhere else. It was not Nadal we used to last year when he regained #1 ATP position. Djoker had easy task with Nadal on the other side of net. Result shows the best Djokovic's dominance in this match which he won in straight sets 6:3, 6:3 in only 84 minutes.
Djokovic has completely controlled his service and Nadal simply did not had adequate response for that. When Djokovic began to play for the victory he did it in spectacular fashion - during first match point he waited patiently Nadal's error and in game of nerves Rafa attacked , they both came on the net and Novak has kicked the ball for triumph, after which he landed on his back and enthusiastically conquered fourth final in Miami.
It will be their 40th meeting on the tennis court which means that Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic are one of the greatest tennis rivals nowadays. Their last match was at 2013 Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in London when Djokovic won 6:3, 6:4. Djokovic is in the lead on hard court 13-7 but Nadal is in overall lead 22-17.
Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic will battle for the Sony Open Tennis Masters in Sunday after interesting development in semifinals when both of their opponents surrendered matches. Tomas Berdych surrendered match to Nadal due to stomach problems, while the second seeded Japanese Kei Nishikori handed duel to Djokovic.
"My thoughts are always the same. The only chance to win against Novak is to play to the limit, play my best. I will see. I know I have to be solid with my serve. I need to play aggressive, no doubt about that." - said Rafa. He regrets because he and Novak passed to final without fight against Berdych and Nishikori, primarily because of the fans who have been deprived of two good matches.
After three defeats in the finals (2005, 2008, 2011), Nadal wants to finally take one of the few trophies that he lacks, while Djokovic is trying to become, along with Federer, the only man in history who twice won the U.S. "double crown" - Indian Wells and Miami.
After Stan Wawrinka won Australian Open, at every step we could hear that the "big four" is past, but now it is considerably far denied - in Indian Wells Djokovic and Federer played the final and now in the final are Djokovic and Nadal. We can expect to see another historic match between these two rivals in Sunday.
Once more, Serena Williams was invincible, this time against 2nd WTA player Li Na. But it was tougher than one could think. It was everything else but light match for 59th WTA title for Serena. Li Na started the match like a storm and got to 5:2 in first set. Then Serena decided that it is enough and showed her magnificent strenght and virtuosly turned course of the match.
Serena was unstopable, she won 11 out of 12 games till the end of the match. Li Na tried everything but today it just wasn't enough, at least not for getting back in the match against superb Serena Williams. The end result was 7:5, 6:1 for Serena which ment that she has recorded her 7th title on Sony Open Tennis.
Thus she definitely confirmed her dominance over this tournamnet (her 9th final and 7th title and on the other side Li Na won 9 WTA tournaments so far). Besides Serena Williams only Chris Evert, Martina Navratilova and Steffi Graf managed to win seven times same WTA tournament so far.
"It was a really important victory, especially playing Li Na, who has been playing so well. She started out so well - I was like, Oh my gosh, I just need to hang in here. Then I heard some fans trying to pull me through - if it hadn't been for you guys I wouldn't be standing here right now." - said Serena.
So, there is no need to say anything else but thank you both for the great match. Hope that we will see more like this one in the future. If you have something to add you can do it in comments.
Finally, the big four will be in Miami QFS. After series of knockdowns of favorites in few past tournaments we will have Nadal, Djokovic, Murray and Federer in QFS of one of the most valuable Masters tournaments (they took 33 of the last 35 Masters 1000 tournaments). These are the matches that we will closely watch:
- Djokovic - Murray
- Federer - Nishikori
- Nadal - Raonic
- Berdych - Dolgopolov
Who is going to be in SF? It is pretty tough to answer because any of them could pass but some have more chances than others. Surely it will be one of the most interesting QFS in 2014 since the beginning of the season. Look at our analysis and leave your comments and predicaments in comment section below the text.
Novak Djokovic vs Andy Murray
Many say that this match will be the highlight of the Miami Masters. Why? Because these two players are not only good friends, but also some of the toughest rivals in the ATP tour. So far Djokovic had pretty easy job in Miami. This is 7th straight QF for Djokovic at ATP Masters Series. He reached it after winning over Tommy Robredo in 4th round on Tuesday (6:3, 7:5) in only 83 minutes. He had 19 winners and 5 aces. On the other hand, Murray defeated Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (6:4, 6:1). World's number 6 took one break point in first set and 3 break points in second set. Djokovic and Murray has met 19 times so far and Djokovic won 11 times. Their last match was last year in Wimbledon when Murray won 6:4, 7:5, 6:4. The last triumph over Murray Djokovic has recorded in the final of the Australian Open 2013th when he celebrated with a 3:1 (6:7 (2) 7:6 (3), 6:3, 6:2). They have played In Miami three times so far and Djokovic leads 2:1. The first time they met in the 2007 SF when Djokovic celebrated with a convincing 6:1, 6:0. Murray had his revenge two years later in the final with a 6:2, 7:5, and the last match was played in the 2012th final when Djokovic won again (6:1, 7:6 (4)).
Photo: AP Photo/Lynne Sladky
Roger Federer vs Kei Nishikori
Kei Nishikori played great match against David Ferrer on Tuesday when he managed to save 4 match points and to defeat ferrer (7:6(7), 2:6, 7:6(9)). It was the longest match of the fourth round with 3 hours and 6 minutes. Nishikori had 32 winners and he converted 5 break points (out of 13) but also 52 unforced errors. This will be first Nishikori's quarter-final appearance at the Miami ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament and Federer is heading for the 9th quarter-final appearance at the Miami ATP World Tour Masters. Federer scored decisive victory over Richard Gasquet in fourth round in Miami which was their 14th meeting. He expressly won opening set in only 25 minutes, and clinched the 6:1, 6:2 win in only 49 minutes. It was 12th victiory over Gasquet in their 14 matches. About his next opponent and their coming match Federer said - "Clearly I think it's an advantage at this point now that I had a quick match today and he had a really brutal match against Ferrer. Can I take advantage of it? Can he recover quickly? We will see tomorrow. But I'm sure we will see him out on the court, and he will give it everything he has. He always has."
Rafael Nadal vs Milos Raonic
Rafael Nadal should have easy job against Milos Raonic. But, is this entirely true? According to Nadal's performance so far in Miami the first thing one could answer is YES, especially because the #1 player advanced to the quarter-finals of the Masters 1000 series in Miami, having easily defeated Fabio Fognini (6:2 , 6:2) . The match lasted a total of 62 minutes, and Fognini during that time only managed to laugh, but also to annoy almost entire audience with his theatrics and, it seems, lack of commitment (35 unforced errors). Nadal, of course, ignored his theatrical performance and "grinded" him in Nadal style without any problems and continued on to one of the few trophies he's missing. The Spaniard has lost a total of only three points on serve, none in the first set, which is the best proof of his superiority. Milos Raonic reached the Miami quarter-finals for the first time with his 100th on hard courts. His best chance lies in his service which is one of the best services in the world. Also, he has great return. "I have to try to impose on (Nadal). When he gets ahead in the points he's difficult to keep up with. I have to get ahead in the points early and stay ahead. And obviously serving, as well, is going to be key.", said Raonic.
Photo: AP Photo/Luis M. Alvarez
Tomas Berdych vs Alexandr Dolgopolov
A surprise in the knockout stages made the Ukrainian Alexandr Dolgopolov , who won over #3 tennis player and the winner of the first Grand Slam of the season, Swiss Stanislas Wawrinka (6:4 , 3:6 , 6:1), only two weeks after he defeated Rafael Nadal in Indian Wells. Dolgopolov has potential to get anyone, but also to lose to anyone. Berdych certainly will not have an easy job against him, and this could be the most interesting match of QFS. Tomas Berdych reached QFS over American John Isner (6:3, 7:5) in 90 minutes, converting two of eight break opportunities.
Photo: AP Photo/Alan Diaz
The ongoing Sony Open WTA 2014 competition taking place in Miami enters its quarterfinal stage which promises to be exceedingly exciting and highly entertaining for tennis lovers all over the world.The quarterfinal stage of this year's competition involves a catalogue invigorating match-ups between top seeded tennis defending champion, four time grand slam champion and a host of other exciting tennis players who are looking to make an impression and possibly get their hands on the most coveted prize in the competition. Let's take a look at the different players preparing to thrill us at this year's WTA quarterfinal in Miami;
Sharapova defeated Belgian tennis player Kirsten Flipkens 3-6, 6-4, 6-1 in 124 minutes to book a quarterfinal match-up with Petra Kvitova. Sharapova made a total of five double faults in the first set and served no aces. Her game incredibly improved as the game progressed; she won 5 of 12 points off Flipkens first serve and an incredible 7 of 9 off her second serves. Sharapova would be looking to advance to the finals and possibly win her first title ever having being second best five times already.
Current defending champion and 6-time winner Serena Williams defeated US qualifier Coco V. in two straight sets under 78 minutes to book a quarterfinal match-up with Angelique Kerber who happens to be the current German fifth seed. Williams will be looking to advance to this year's semi-final and possibly book a place in the final of this year's competition, to enable her effectively defend her title.
Li booked a quarterfinal place in this year's competition to go head-to-head with Caroline Wozniacki after defeating Carla Suarez Navarro 6:0, 6:2 in 62 minutes. No. 2 seeded Li Na would be looking to continue her head-to-head dominance over Wozniacki having defeated her thrice already even though Wozniacki won their last meeting.
Cibulkova knocked out Venus Williams to book the last available slot in this year's quarterfinals. Dominika Cibulkova will be going up against Agnieszka Radwanska in a match that many see as a repeat of the Australian Open semi-final in January. Cibulkova will be looking to continue her sensational form in Miami with a victory against Agnieszka to enable her progress to the semifinals.
2011 Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova booked a place in the quarterfinal stage of this year's competition for a match-up with Maria Sharapova after defeating Ana Ivanovic 3:6, 6:0, 6:0. Kvitova had a slow start against Ivanovic but subsequently raised her gameplay and intensity by winning the next 12 consecutive games. Popularly referred to as Petra by her social media fans, she'll be looking to defeat Maria Sharapova in a match which some have tagged as a replay of the 2011 Wimbledon final.
The 2012 champion would be looking to exact revenge on Slovakia's tennis icon Dominika Cibulkova after battling past No. 32 seeded ElenaVesnina. Agnieszka is currently rated as one of the most exciting tennis players in the world at the moment due to her current form which many see as incredible (Win-Loss/18-5).
No. 10 seeded Caroline Wozniacki advanced to the quarterfinals after defeating Varvara Lepchenko 6:0, 6:1 in 61 minutes. Wozniacki will face Li Na for a possible advancement into this year's semifinal. Caroline Wozniacki has been in scintillating form this year having won 24 of the last 26 games she has played. Wozniacki would be looking for another win over a current world No. 2 after defeating Vera Zvonareva in the semifinals of the 2010 edition of this competition.
Angelique kerber would be looking to eliminate Serena Williams from this year's competition after defeating Russia's Ekaterina Makarova 6:4, 1:6, 6:3 to book a quarterfinal match-up with defending champion Serena Williams.
From the different matchups and the various players profiles we've analyzed so far, it is pretty obvious that this year's WTA quarterfinal will be extraordinarily exhilarating to watch and very unfortunate to miss out on because it promises to be a showcase of possibly the best tennis performances from arguably the best players in the world.