Ferrer Video clip Score: / five
The opening day of the Gerry Weber Open 2014 saw a couple of big upsets as two of the top players in the tournament, Mikhail Youzhny and Richard Gasquet, were sent packing from the first round.
Youzhny was found wanting against Ivo Karlovic, the Croatian player, while, Gasquet was shown the exit door by the Dutchman Robin Haase who won in the straights sets by 6-4, 6-4.
The defeat of Gasquet against Haase was more surprising because the former is a terrific player on the grass courts. Previously, whenever he had come across Haase on green surfaces, he had won hands down. He was supposed to do the same again, but, that wasn’t the case to be.
Haase’s ability to hit big left Gasquet clueless on quite a few occasions in both the sets and the points that he dropped during those key moments made the difference eventually.
Gasquet didn’t have a great French Open either. He had suffered a third round defeat there, but, that was bound to happen as he had not practised much before that tournament. He had just recovered from injury and travelled to Paris with lack of match practice.
Speaking in the post match interview yesterday, Gasquet revealed that he has established a fresh injury a couple of days ago while training and he was having pain during the match against Haase.
The Frenchman said, “I felt a bit of it (pain). It was hard for me out there, but, no excuses.”
Despite remaining out for a decent amount of time due to injury and getting out early from a couple of tournaments, Gasquet is still the top ranked French player in the world. The 28-year old player’s overall position in the World rankings is no. 11 though.
Gabriela Sabatini’s countryman, Juan Monaco, is not going to participate in the singles competition of the Wimbledon Championships which will start next week.
Monaco who has suffered a number of losses on the tour this season is presently at the 71st position in the World rankings. It’s not been long back when he was one of the top 10 players in the world, but, all of a sudden, his rhythm completely got lost and he has rapidly deteriorated in the rankings in the recent past.
His campaign at the recently finished French Open was not that encouraging either. He had been beaten in round no. 2 there.
In total, Monaco has played 20 matches in the 2014 season out of which he has won 8, while, lost 12. This is a very poor record for a player who was in top 10 a while back.
Monaco confirmed his withdrawal from the Wimbledon Championships by releasing a statement on a social networking site.
That statement reads, “Hello everybody. I am very disappointed to make you all aware that I would not be there taking part in the next Slam of this year i.e. the Wimbledon Championships. I am suffering from an injury because of which I have not been able to even move properly. So, it’s not possible for me to go out there and compete. I have been told that it would take me almost a month to get 100% fit. I hope my recovery goes well. I appreciate each and every positive message sent to me by you guys. Thank you.”
Monaco’s best in the Grand Slam singles so far has been an entry to the 4th round. He has done that four times in his career, twice in the French Open and twice in the US Open, but, he hasn’t been able to go past that stage.
Ferrer Online video Ranking: 5 / 5
There seems to be no space for sentiments this Friday as the lethal pair Ernests Gulbis and Novak Djokovic take on each other to grab the final spot in the finals of Roland Garros. Talking about his competitor, Djokovic commented that they have had a twelve year association both as friends and players and they had both been part of the Niki Pilic’s academy situated near Munich. Djokovic further added that Gulbis is an extremely talented player and he remembers him coming out of practice sessions, swinging completely through the ball. Gulbis always had an aura of confidence around him even from the mere age of 14 or 15. It could be easily made out that he sure would be someone big when he grows up.
However, given the situation where there is just one spot left for the No. 1 position in the Emirates ATP Ranking, Djokovic will leave no stone unturned to be the eight man to go down in history to have completed a marvelous career Grand Slam. Djokovic was the runner up in 2012 and knows it for sure that he has to knuckle down Gulbis if he wants to go ahead of that.
Djokovic, the second seem is expected to return back to the first rank only if Rafael Nadal fails to bag his 9th trophy, and has a 4-1 lead over Gulbis, the number 18 seed. This pair hasn’t met each other on the court since three years and had taken on each other last on clay court in the year 2008 for the quarter finals of Roland Garros. Djokovic had bagged the game them with a score of 7-5, 7-6(3), 7-5. The only win Gulbis had against Djokovic was in the year 2009 at Brisbane International.