Apr 08

Dusty Sela clean up in Davis Cup’s fine weekend

The second batch of ties this year in Davis Cup provided some magnificent ties at World Group level – most of the favourites found a way through, but the marginally lower lights offered some magnificent tests to their more fancied opponents. Two points in two days gave Kazhakstan and especially FSOT favourite Andrey Golubev a …

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Feb 02

Davis Cup: The Success Stories and honourable others

Yasutaka Uchiyama gets a volley of praise (Atsushi Tomura/Getty Images AsiaPac)

It was just another weekend of Davis Cup tennis. There were lengthy epics, genuine surprises, (over) boisterous crowd behaviour and much more as five sets and patrotism came to the fore in what is so often a solo sport. All from a tournament in desperate need of reform which the top players find a terrible …

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Jan 30

Davis Cup: Top Men, Journeymen and more

Andrei Pavel has brought some harmony to Romania (Christopher Lee/Getty Europe)

Having established that there’s a healthy number of elite players involved in Davis Cup this time round (see last post), there are still a number of men outside the usual spotlight who have a real opportunity to show off their talents and make an impact in this weekend’s Davis Cup matches in the top 16 …

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Jan 29

Davis Cup: Are the top players missing?

Ajlaz Bedene is among those with his mind elsewhere this Davis Cup weekend (Clive Brunskill/Getty Images Europe)

The arguments of the tennis year can follow as familiar a pattern as the calendar itself. The Australian Open brings talk of grunting, equal prize money and its early start. Then, after that, the question is do the elite players shun the Davis Cup, regarding it as an anachronistic thing that is a distraction from …

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Jan 27

Australian Open Reflections: Robert’s number comes up and question time.

Stephane Robert is Captain Cook

As the elite scrapped for the prizes at the Australian Open, for many it’s a distant memory. The tennis wheel continues to turn for the rest, with Challengers and Davis Cup nominations to delight, disappoint, or fizzle out in behind closed doors discussions (or e-mails) about the fees being offered to play. But some can …

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Jan 23

The Tattoos that tell all – in honour of Stanislas Wawrinka

Stan Wawrinka's Tattoo

You might have thought Stanislas Wawrinka’s success in reaching the Australian Open final (and promptly being written off before his opponent was even known) was down to his fine backhand, or the adept coaching of Magnus Norman. This is of course, nonsense. What’s really helped is the advice he has tattooed on his arm, which …

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Jan 12

Some Ongoing Tennis Themes of 2014

Market me, ATP! And yes a little skin will help (Julian Finney/Getty Europe)

The tennis off-season is long gone. With Christmas negotiated (or not for Arabic, Israeli, Japanese and other readers) the mayhem of matches, draws, ranking and points is back underway and the Australian Open is almost upon us. So before the complete descent into irregular sleep patterns (for most of us), the punching or the air …

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Jan 12

Australian Open: Qualifiers Aiming to Shine

Yang-tastic news for Chinese Taipei - a new face (Darrian Traynor/Getty Images AsiaPac)

The Australian Open, for reasons of global pretension, or out of some pan-continental obligation, or a desire for car company sponsors, likes to call itself the Grand Slam of the Asia-Pacific. So it might have been met with a sense of joy that two Asian players came through the qualifiers to make the main draw. …

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Jan 07

Australian Open qualifiers 2014

Bubka in pre-accident times

With barely a blink of an eye, albeit plenty of pulled quadriceps and challenged glutes the first Grand Slam of 2014 is on us. The year remains in its infancy, and form is delightfully scarce, even though withdrawals are not. Someone has to be top of the shop in qualifying though, and that’s Dustin Brown …

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Dec 07

Five Tennis Players Seeking Solace in 2014

Ignatik's career has failed to ignite after junior success (Jonathan Moore/Getty Images North America)

So we’ve nominated our five players of the year who can be content with their efforts. Now to the more testing end of the spectrum, the five players who haven’t quite found their 2013 going to plan, for various reasons. We’ll exclude the victims of drug naivety and/or negligence, those who have personal problems that …

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