Andrey Rublev

Basilashvili Retains Hamburg Crown

Nikoloz Basilashvili won his second successive Hamburg European Open title on Sunday, defeating unseeded Russian Andrey Rublev 7-5, 4-6, 6-3. In front of about 6,000 spectators on Centre Court, the tournament’s No. 4 from Georgia overpowered his opponent towards the end of the match and gained the decisive two breaks in the fourth as well as the sixth game of the final set to secure victory in two hours and seven minutes.

“It’s unbelievable to win back-to-back titles here. It looks like that this is my favourite tournament and it is an ATP 500 event, so I am really happy,” Basilashvili said.

With his 12th straight match win at Hamburg, Basilashvili has become the first seeded Rothenbaum titlist since seventh favourite Martin Klizan of Slovakia won in 2016. Unseeded lucky loser Leonardo Mayer of Argentina clinched the trophy in 2017, while the Georgian was an unseeded qualifier when he claimed the title here last year.

“Maybe the clay is different here or something is different on the Centre Court. I can see the ball much better than at other tournaments. It looks like I’m playing my best tennis here,” Basilashvili said. ”I didn’t know that Roger (Federer) and Medvedev won defending titles but just to see my name next to them means a lot to me for sure.”
After lifting his third ATP 500-level trophy in a 12-month span, Basilashvili took away from Northern Germany $354,845 in prize money as well as 500 ATP-Ranking points.

Rublev, who was trying to become the first Russian to the take the Hamburg since Nikolay Davydenko in 2009, collected a prize cheque of $178,220 and 300 ATP-Ranking points.

“It’s always disappointing to lose in a final but that’s the part of the game. We have to deal with it. Congrats to Nikoloz, who did a very good job to defend his title here,” Rublev said during his on-court speech and could also take away some positives from the last seven days in Hamburg: “This has been my best week here so far. I hope that can keep it up and even improve over the next couple of weeks.”

John Isner Makes Tennis History Again With Fastest Official Serve – Passing Shots with Kevin Craig

by Kevin Craig

@KCraig_Tennis

 

  • John Isner hit the fastest official serve in tennis history with a 157 mph serve late in the third set of his singles match on Sunday against Bernard Tomic. In the match, Isner hit 49 aces and zero double faults. The 49 aces is the second most in a Davis Cup world group match, as well as any four-set match. The most aces hit in a Davis Cup World Group match was by Ivo Karlovic in 2009 when he hit 78 aces, and the most aces hit in a four-set match was by Joachim Johansson who hit 51 aces in the 2005 Australian Open. Sam Groth hit a 163 mph serve in a Challenger in South Korea in 2012, but not recognized by the ATP as an official record due to the inconsistent nature of the type of radar used on the Challenger level. Isner also made tennis history winning the longest match ever played, 11 hours, 5 minutes against Nicolas Mahut 70-68 in the fifth set.
  • Marcos Baghdatis surpassed Bjorn Borg for the record of longest Davis Cup win streak. Baghdatis has now won 36 singles rubbers in a row with his most recent loss coming to Irakli Labadze in 2003.
  • Jarrko Nieminen of Finland and Emilio Gomez of Ecuador won their Davis Cup singles rubbers on Friday by a score of 6-0, 6-0, 6-0. It was the first time in history that there were two triple bagels in the same day for Davis Cup.
  • Lukasz Kubot and Marcin Matkowski won the first set and first match in the World Group in Poland’s Davis Cup history, defeating Carlos Berlocq and Renzo Olivo of Argentina in the doubles rubber.
  • The Czech Republic improved to 15-0 when Tomas Berdych wins a singles rubber on the first day and the doubles rubber with Radek Stepanek as they defeated Germany, 3-2.
  • Chile has now won five straight ties 5-0 since 2014. They have swept Paraguay, Peru, Mexico, Venezuela, and Colombia consecutively.
  • Andrey Rublev won a challenger in Quimper, France this week. The title is the 10th for teenagers on the challenger circuit since the start of 2015 after Taylor Fritz and Hyeon Chung each won three, while Alex Zverev, Jared Donaldson, Borna Coric, and now Rublev have one each.