Wimbledon

Can Roger Federer Win A 21st Grand Slam Title?

Roger Federer, a formidable force in the men’s singles tennis, going down as a legend in the sport. He has positioned himself at the top of the table for the most Grand Slam singles titles of all-time with a current total of 20. Although his titles are pretty spread out across the four major competitions, he has seen most success at Wimbledon. From his first win in 2003 to his most recent win last year at the Australian Open, Federer has provided us with numerous intense matches – most of them facing his biggest rivals, Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal. With these top three dominating in each Grand Slam it is hard to see someone disrupting their flow, but can Roger Federer make it number 21 at the US Open this year? If you think you know who will win this year’s final Grand Slam you can bet on US Open 2019 with Betfair.

Although Federer has seen unprecedented success across all Grand Slams, his best years were earlier on in his career. Between the years of 2003 and 2010, we saw Federer claim 16 of his Grand Slam titles, which means in the last nine years, he has only won four. It could be fair to say that Federer has slowed down (especially as he has recently celebrated his 38th birthday), but it is also a valid argument that he has been overthrown by the arrival of Nadal and Djokovic who have both seen most of their successes after 2010, but have collectively claimed 34 Grand Slam titles.

It is true that since Nadal and Djokovic came on the scene they have made things slightly trickier for Federer, and although he has not won as many titles since they came about, he has still been reaching the finals at least once every year with the exception of 2013 and 2016. In fact, most of the Grand Slam finals since 2003 have been contested between these three tennis players with only a handful of exceptions.

In his recent years, we have seen Federer consistently challenging for a title but with Djokovic dominating at Wimbledon and the ‘King of Clay’ Nadal dominating at the French Open, he seems to be struggling to breakthrough. Federer has seen some success at the US Open in previous years, totalling five Grand Slam titles there, but he hasn’t won a title at Flushing Meadows since 2008 and the last final he reached was in 2015. However, at the Australian Open, we have seen Federer claim the Grand Slam in 2018 and 2017, so although he missed out on the win this year, he could be in with a greater chance of achieving number 21 there next year. There is a lot of debate as to where Federer could achieve his next Grand Slam title, but actually, will he claim it at all?

Is the era of Roger Federer’s Grand Slam title wins starting to phase out, or has he got a few more victories left in him? There has recently been a lot of speculation regarding his retirement. His reign has already been incredible and landed him well and truly in the history books of the sport, but it might be possible that his struggle to claim a title in recent years is a sign, that his last title in the Australian Open, was his last.

Whether you believe Federer’s time as a champion is up or that he has still got some glory moments left, one undeniable thing is his dedication and incredible achievements within the sport.

Thuuz Sports Says Federer-Djokovic Wimbledon Final Among Top Global Sports Events

Palo Alto, CA – Thuuz Sports, the most powerful automated video highlights production platform for worldwide sports, announced their July Top 10 most exciting games, with a very unique 24 hour period in the UK, The Cricket World Cup and Men’s Final at Wimbledon outdistancing some exciting and emotional MLB matchups during the month The full top ten is below.

Using their custom designed algorithms to measure real-time event excitement, Thuuz provides a unique look into what games have gotten fans the most excited and engaged as 2019 rolls along.

The game excitement ratings are measured on a 0 to 100 scale and take into consideration game pace, team parity, play novelty, momentum shifts, social buzz, and historical context. The algorithms behind the excitement ratings are statistically calibrated to insure the appropriate distribution of ratings across the duration of a season or course of a tournament.

Using the Thuuz excitement measurement platform, the top ten most exciting games were:

1. New Zealand 241/8 & 15/1, England 241 & 15/0 (Cricket): 7/14: Some people are dubbing this cricket match the greatest one ever, and rightly so. In front of their home fans, England prevailed over New Zealand in the first ever Super Over in a Cricket World Cup Final. After the match ended with both teams at 241, the Super Over then ended with both teams at 15. The teams were so evenly matched that they even tied in OT. In the end, ENG were declared the winner because they had more boundaries than NZ.

2. Novak Djokovic vs. Roger Federer 7-6(5), 1-6, 7-6(4), 4-6, 13-12(3) (ATP): 7/14: London had quite the day. At the same time the Cricket World Cup was happening, so was the Wimbledon Final between these two classic rivals. It resulted in the first ever 5th set tiebreaker in Wimbledon history after the tournament introduced a tiebreaker at 12-12 in the 5th set at the beginning of the tournament. Federer won more points and games, but Djokovic won when it mattered most, including all 3 tiebreakers to secure his 5th Wimbledon trophy.

3. Yankees 14, Twins 12 (MLB): 7/23: Similar to the first two games on this list, this battle between two of the American League powerhouses was a runaway candidate for the best game of the year. After being down 8-2, the Yankees scored 3 runs in the 5th inning followed by another 5 runs in the top of the 8th to take a 10-9 lead.. The Twins took the lead back in the bottom of the 8th. The Yanks took the lead again in the top of the 9th. Then, in the bottom of the 9th, the Twins tied the game to send it to extra innings. NYY followed with a run in the 10th, and after an Aaron Hicks’ diving catch with the bases loaded, the Yankees secured the win.. In total, the teams combined for 12 runs in the final 3 innings, including 9 for the Yankees.

4. Astros 11, Angels 10 (MLB): 7/7: The game’s best player Mike Trout (LAA) homered twice for the Angels, but they ultimately came up short after WS MVP George Springer hit a walk-off single in the 10th inning. Each team had 6 hitters log multi-hit performances, including 4 of the Astros recording 3+ hits. The game also had a really dark moment when Angels’ catcher J. Lucroy suffered a devastating concussion on a collision at the plate, dampening the mood of an otherwise fantastic baseball game.

5. Twins 7 Athletics 6 (MLB): 7/21: A back-and forth affair, this game saw at least one team score a run in seven innings. Trailing 5-4 entering the 8th inning, the bottom of the A’s lineup did some damage, hitting an RBI double and sac fly giving the A’s bullpen a 6-5 lead. It was not enough, though, as Twins leadoff hitter Max Kepler hit a walkoff single for his 3rd hit and 4th RBI of the night.

6. Cardinals 12, Reds 11 (MLB): 7/19: A wild offensive output saw the Reds take an early 7-0 lead behind a 3-R HR from catcher R. Lavarway. Down by 7, the Cards exploded for a 10-run 6th inning. However, the real story of the inning was that STL scored 7 of those runs with 2 outs in the inning, culminating with a 3-R HR from slugger Jose Martinez. That wasn’t it for the offense, as the Reds scored 4 runs and had Joey Votto up with 2 outs in the 9th, but he grounded out to end the game and the offensive fireworks.

7. Brewers 7, Pirates 6 (MLB): 7/5: Powered by 3 homers, the Brewers took a comfortable 6-1 lead into the bottom of the 9th inning. The Pirates, however, would not go down easy, putting together a spirited rally capped off by a game-tying solo homer by Jung Ho Kang with 2 outs in the 9th. In the top of the 10th, The Brewers responded with a go-ahead single by Lorenzo Cain to make the score 7-6. After blowing the save in the 9th, Junior Guerra shut the door in the 10th to give the Brewers a thrilling 7-6 win.

8. Blue Jays 10 Rays 9 (MLB): 7/27: The Blue Jays faced a daunting 9-3 deficit heading into the bottom of the 8th inning. They put up 2 runs in the 8th inning on solo homers, and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. crushed a three-run homer in the 9th to cut the Rays’ lead to 1. With the Blue Jays down to their final out, Brandon Drury hit a solo homer to tie the game at 9. In the bottom of the 12th, Teoscar Hernandez broke the tie with a walk-off home run to complete the Blue Jays’ improbable come-from-behind win.

9. Rays 10, Blue Jays 9 (MLB): 7/28: Take the recap from the game above, flip it on its head, and that is pretty much the outcome of the game between the Jays and Rays from the next day. The Jays were down 8-1 after 5 innings, but 3 runs in the 6th, 2 in the 7th, and 3 more in the 8th tied the game up at 9 apiece. An RBI groundout with the bases loaded gave the Rays a 10-9 lead in the 9th that they wouldn’t relinquish to extract some revenge from the previous night’s game.

10. Angels 13, Mariners 0 (MLB): 7/12 On the surface, a 13-0 game is not all that exciting. Dive into it and suddenly the power of sports becomes apparent. In the Angels first home game after suffering the tragic death of pitcher T. Skaggs, two Angels pitchers combined to throw a no-hitter. Some of the crazy stats from that night include… The Angels scored 7 runs in the first and 13 runs overall, and Skaggs’ birthday was on July 13th. In the 1st inning, Mike Trout hit a HR 454 feet. Skaggs number was 45. And yes, every Angels player was wearing his number on their jersey that night. The no-hitter began with Skaggs’ mom throwing a perfect strike in the ceremonial 1st pitch. It was a brilliant and emotional night from start to finish.

ABOUT Thuuz Sports

Leveraging its automation platform, Thuuz Sports enables Personalized Clips, Highlight Reels, and Condensed Games: any duration, any perspective, involving any set of plays, players, fantasy rosters, narratives, and themes. Thuuz Sports also offers a Subjective Sports Metadata Service that enables its customers to deliver sports apps and guides that deliver a true personalized experience to their fans based on leveraging Thuuz Sports excitement ratings, dynamic headlines, and real-time notifications. Thuuz Sports customers reach well over 150 million sports fans worldwide and include some of the biggest names in the industry.

Like us on Facebook: Thuuz

Follow us on Twitter: @Thuuz

Barbora Strycova Seals Near Perfect Wimbledon With Doubles Title To Lift Her To No. 1 Doubles Ranking

The WTA (Women’s Tennis Association) announced that Czech Republic’s Barbora Strycova will ascend to WTA World No.1 in doubles for the first time in her career when the rankings are released on Monday, July 15.

By capturing her maiden Grand Slam doubles title at Wimbledon, alongside former WTA World No.1 doubles player Hsieh Su-Wei, Strycova becomes the seventh woman representing the Czech Republic to achieve the No.1 doubles ranking. She joins her compatriots Helena Sukova, Jana Novotna, Kveta Peschke, Lucie Safarova, Barbora Krejcikova and Katerina Siniakova to reach the pinnacle of the sport.

Strycova also becomes the 43rd woman overall to reach the WTA World No.1 doubles ranking, taking the top spot from Kristina Mladenovic, who has held it the past five weeks. At 33 years, 109 days, Strycova becomes the second oldest player to debut as the World No.1 in doubles following Kveta Peschke in 2011 (35 years, 361 days).

“It’s a great honor to become the World No.1 doubles player,” said Strycova. “I’m so happy to win my first Grand Slam, and I could not have made it here without my amazing partner Hsieh. We’ve put in so much work and I’m proud of all of our accomplishments together.”

Over the last 12 months, Strycova has lifted six WTA doubles trophies from eight finals including titles at the 2018 Connecticut Open in New Haven and China Open in Beijing (both w/Andrea Sestini Hlavackova), and 2019 Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships, Mutua Madrid Open, Nature Valley Classic in Birmingham, and Wimbledon (all w/Hsieh).

“Earning the WTA World No.1 Doubles Ranking is a reflection of the hard work and dedication that Barbora has put forth,” said Steve Simon, WTA Chairman and CEO. “Congratulations to Barbora on this very special achievement which highlights her outstanding career in both singles and doubles.”

The new WTA Doubles World No.1 holds 27 career WTA doubles titles, including three WTA Premier Mandatory trophies at 2018 BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells (w/Hsieh), 2018 Beijing (w/Sestini Hlavackova) and 2019 Madrid (w/Hsieh).

In addition to winning her first Grand Slam doubles title at Wimbledon, Strycova also reached her career first major semifinal in singles this fortnight at the All England Club, defeating four seeded players including British No.1 Johanna Konta before falling to Serena Williams.

Click here to read more on about the history of Czech Tennis in the book “A Journey To Glory From Behind The Iron Curtain” by Jan Kodes: https://www.amazon.com/dp/0942257685/ref=cm_sw_r_tw_dp_U_x_Fn8kDbRYNM39M

Novak Djokovic Wins Historic Wimbledon Final Against Roger Federer In First-Ever Final-Set Tiebreaker

Novak Djokovic won Wimbledon for a fifth time in historic fashion beating Roger Federer 7-6 (7-6), 1-6, 7-6 (7-4), 4-6, 13-12 (7-3) in a match that featured the first fifth-set tiebreaker in Wimbledon singles history. The final was the longest men’s final in Wimbledon history at 4 hours and 57 minutes. The win was the 16th major title for Djokovic, closing the gap between he and Federer, the all-time leading major winner at 20 and Rafael Nadal at 18.

Djokovic saved two match points with Federer serving for the match at 8-7, 40-15 but was not able to finish off the Serbian. Djokovic becomes the first man to save a match point in a Wimbledon final since Bob Falkenburg in saved three match points in the 1948 singles final against John Bromwich.

“I’ll try to forget,” joked Federer, who is less than a month shy of his 38th birthday and would have been the oldest man to win a Grand Slam title in the professional era.

This year marked the first year that Wimbledon implemented a tie-breaker in the fifth-set at 12-12, in response to Kevin Anderson and John Isner going to 26-24 in the men’s singles semifinals, causing havoc in the tournament schedule and causing for Anderson, the semifinal winner over Isner, to not be able to be fresh enough to play at his best in the final against Djokovic in the 2018 final. The Federer vs. Djokovic match was the first singles match this year to go into the 12-12 final-set tiebreaker, but a doubles match early in the event was decided by the final-set tiebreaker.

To read about other great tennis matches in history, order “The Greatest Tennis Matches of All Time” book here by Steve Flink: https://www.amazon.com/Greatest-Tennis-Matches-All-Time/dp/0942257936/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=greatest+tennis+matches+of+all+time&qid=1563128508&s=gateway&sr=8-1

Wimbledon 2019: The Five Things We Would Love To See Happen

With Wimbledon underway, tennis fans will be eagerly anticipating the outcome of the most prestigious tournament on the calendar. The All England Club will once again play host to the third tennis major of 2019, where a whole host of players will all ensue in battle to try and take the coveted prize. The thing with Wimbledon, is that it tends to be the same old drill every year.

That’s not to say the tournament isn’t exciting, but wouldn’t it be a breath of fresh air with a bit more controversy and some stand-out talking points. Throughout its glorious history, Wimbledon has served up some of the most magical and iconic moments – but we would love to see the below happen this year. FYI, this is nothing more than light-hearted fun, so please take it with a pinch of salt… or a dollop of strawberries and cream!

John McEnroe to launch an unnecessary tirade at anyone

John McEnroe was perhaps more notorious for his foul-mouthed tirades than his superb tennis ability, and the current BBC commentator could cause quite the stir again this year. How I can hear you ask? Well, imagine a bad call being made and McEnroe revisits yesteryear and storms out of the media section and squares up to the umpire. I mean, it will have nothing to do with him but the humour factor would be brilliant.

Tim Henman make a comeback and wins a semi-final game

Ah, Tiger Tim. The nearly man who never quite made it in his heyday during the late 1990s and early noughties. Henman’s efforts were never in doubt, although he never made it to a Grand Slam final so wouldn’t it be a remedy of sorts if he hijacked the men’s semi-finals and took the match point to warrant a place in the final! Come on Tiger Tim, you can do it! Imagine the scenes!

Andy Murray branches out from his monotone voice

He won’t be featuring in the men’s singles this year, but Andy Murray will be flying the flag for Britain in the men’s doubles at least. The two-time winner is likely to retire after the tournament, which means we’ll be missing Murray’s lethargic and tiring post-match interviews. The seemingly unenthusiastic Murray has often been criticised for his monotone voice, so wouldn’t it be a breath of fresh air if he delivered his thoughts and feelings in a much more positive fashion. Sign off on a high note, eh Mr Murray.

Nick Kyrgios being nice to umpires

He is one of the most controversial players to grace the game and certainly someone who is no stranger to trouble, so imagine a certain Nick Kyrgios actually being nice to people, namely umpires. The hot-headed Australian has been the centre of many misconduct charges in recent years and his charge sheet shows no signs of slowing, so wouldn’t it be a welcome relief to see him actually be pleasant to everybody, for a change.
Federer, Nadal and Djokovic having a big fight

Okay, so this would be a rather peculiar sequence of events and one that would really tarnish the game, but what if the three best players on the men’s circuit all had a huge scrape in the middle of Centre Court? The reasoning behind it is unclear at this stage, but we’d guestimate that Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic would all be trying to settle who is the best of the best. I mean, we could just determine it from the tennis the play and the H2H records but that’s just boring, isn’t it.

All jokes aside, take a look at all the latest prices for this year’s event at Paddy Power, where you can bet on Wimbledon right now.

Zverev Has to Live Up to Potential

Alexander Zverev proved his talent in London at the end of 2018, defeating Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic to win the ATP Finals. The German now faces the challenge of replicating his form a few miles down the road in SW19 to make his Grand Slam breakthrough at Wimbledon.

Zverev has produced quality results in isolation, although he has not managed to progress further than the quarter-finals of a Grand Slam in his 16 attempts. The 22-year-old has reached the last eight in his last two appearances at the French Open. However, his best performance at Wimbledon was his fourth-round berth achieved in 2017.

It would take a significant improvement for Zverev to challenge for the crown at the All England Club, although he is backed behind the big three of Djokovic, Nadal and Federer as the next best option in the Wimbledon winner odds at 18/1. The German does have the star potential, but whether he can put it all together with a surge to the latter stages of the competition is another matter given the quality of the top three players.

He was extremely underwhelming last season, failing to emerge beyond the first week of Wimbledon. Zverev’s form on the ATP Tour earned him the fourth seed for the competition, and he brushed aside James Duckworth with ease in the first round. However, American Taylor Fritz took him all the way to five sets, forcing the German to battle back to win the final two to advance to the third round. His exploits against Fritz took their toll in his next outing, resulting in a five-set defeat at the hands of Ernests Gulbis, losing the final two sets 6-3 6-0.

It was the same story at the US Open, failing to progress beyond the third round after being beaten by his compatriot Philipp Kohlschreiber. Zverev put that disappointment behind him to end the year on a high note in the ATP Tour Finals. In his group, the German was defeated by Djokovic, but overcame John Isner and Marin Cilic to book his place in the semi-finals. Zverev put forward arguably the best performance of his career to beat Federer before topping that display by winning in straights sets in his revenge match against Djokovic.

The results proved that the German is more than capable of beating the elite players, although he could not carry that forward into the Australian Open. Milos Raonic saw him off with ease in the first Grand Slam of 2019 in the fourth round. He improved his performance at the French Open, earning a quarter-final berth for the second year on the bounce. The presence of Djokovic ended his charge, dumping him out in straight sets.

Zverev has impressed in short stints, but has not managed to make a strong impression over two weeks of a major competition. He has bogged down in the early rounds, which has resulted in fatigue and his eventual premature exit. The 22-year-old has to become more clinical in the early rounds of Grand Slams to prepare himself for the challenge of the big three in the latter stages. Zverev has the quality, but needs to deliver on his potential.

Who Will Win Wimbledon 2019?

The Grand Slam tournaments are always eagerly anticipated by tennis fans and there is none quite like Wimbledon. It is considered by many to be the most prestigious of the Grand Slams and is the only one left played on grass. People always speculate as to who will win each of the tournaments and the eyes of the world will no doubt turn once more to London in June to see who can take home the Wimbledon Cup.

Who to Pick?
If you are thinking of getting involved with a little sports betting then you will need to know a little more about each of the players. Let’s take a look at some of the names swirling around in the mix so you have a clearer idea about who will come out on top in the Men’s Final at Wimbledon in 2019.

Andy Murray
The Scot has done well at Wimbledon over the years, having won the cup twice, but he has been plagued with injuries recently. He announced that he would soon be retiring after the Australian Open. It is thought that one last tournament at Wimbledon is likely to be his final game and the British public will be very mournful to see it come to pass.

Novak Djokovic
The current reigning champ of Wimbledon and the winner of the Australian Open for 2019, it seems likely that we will at least see him in the final. However, Djokovic has a tendency to become slightly complacent when he is on a winning streak as he currently is. If he is to take home his fifth Wimbledon win, he will need to make sure he concentrates.

Rafael Nadal
Nadal plays much better on clay than he does on grass which is why he has won distinctly more French Open titles than others. Though he has won at Wimbledon before, this was last in 2010. We can expect him to do exceptionally well at Wimbledon but it is doubtful that he will manage to secure a win.

Roger Federer
The last member of the Big Four is feeling confident after his 100th overall win and Wimbledon might be the place for him to secure it. Grass is one of Federer’s best terrains, having netted him an incredible 8 wins at Wimbledon before. Federer and Djokovic have met previously 47 times with 15 of those matches being at Grand Slams. While Djokovic is tipped to win, it cannot be denied that Federer is the better player on grass, meaning that a final with these two powerhouses is likely to be a very interesting match indeed.

Alexander Zverev
If anyone is likely to beat Federer or Djokovic to a place in the final, it is likely to be Zverev. The German player is already tipped to be a future World No.1 and he is eager for his first Grand Slam win. While he is yet to take a title on grass, he has got the drive to succeed and this season will certainly show that.

Kevin Anderson
One half of the historic 2018 Men’s semi-final match that lasted an astonishing 6 hours and 36 minutes (the second-longest men’s singles match ever played at Wimbledon), Anderson has proved himself to be a strong player. The South African has seen several Gran Slam tournaments over the years and, while we do not expect him to reach the finals again, we can certainly see him performing well once more.

John Isner
The other player in the 2018 Men’s semi-final and also one half of the longest professional tennis match in history, clocking in at 11 hours and 5 minutes of play over three days, has been consistently favourable in his past years in tournaments. He has managed to win against some of the top players before. Like Anderson, it is unlikely that we will see him win big at Wimbledon but we can expect him to have a great performance once again.

Kyle Edmund
The current British No.1 has been growing in strength over the past few years and it is likely that we are soon going to see him succeed at a high Grand Slam level. Despite a somewhat poor appearance at the Australian Open in 2019, we can expect him to improve as the season continues. It has been noted on multiple occasions that Edmund’s forehand is one of the best in play today. If he can work on other areas of his play then he is likely to be a force to be reckoned with in the future.

Dominic Thiem
Having appeared in the French Open Final and US Open quarterfinal, we can expect some great things from this Austrian player and current world No. 4. On clay, he has already proven himself to be a formidable opponent; including Nadal and Federer. He is likely to dominate in the Clay Opens in the future but we can expect him to deliver a solid performance at Wimbledon this year.

Borna Ćorić
The Croatian player managed to reach World No.2 in November 2018 but is currently residing at No.13. Nevertheless, he has a consistently positive performance. The fact that he has already reached the heights of No.2 without a Grand Slam win to his name shows his capabilities as a player. He has never broken out of the rounds at Wimbledon thus far, but 2019 will be a good year to watch his career go from strength to strength.

Who Will Win?

It is fair to say that we will see the Wimbledon Cup lifted by either Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer or Alexander Zverev. These three players are definitely the ones to watch as we move towards Wimbledon. The last time someone other than the Big Four won Wimbledon was in 2002. In the sixteen tournaments since then, these top tennis players have passed the cup back and forth between them. Despite it being more likely that Djokovic or Federer will win, it will be extremely interesting whether or not Zverev will be the one to finally break this epic winning streak.

Andy Murray Embodied Many Things To Many People

by Rajagopalan Rohinee

Andy Murray embodied many things to many people. He was the gritty warrior who never let up in his performances, despite the numerous defeats and setbacks that waylaid him. He was the deceptive athlete, who could vary his shot-making to suit himself and discomfit his opponent. He was also the rebel who took decisions which though seemed effortless for him, never seemed easy for others.

Of all these facets, it’s the last trait that not only set Murray apart from his peers but also carved a unique pride of place for him among them.

Be it raising his voice for the controversial referendum vote for Scottish independence from the United Kingdom – followed by an unapologetic stance reiterating his decision in the aftermath of the fallout – in 2014, or be it a demonstrative declaration of giving women in the profession – both past and present – their due, Murray never shied away from taking a stand regardless of how it may have been perceived.

At a time, when, on the subject of equal pay for women players, players either preferred to sit on the fence with displays of dubious diplomacy, or outright negated the need for the same, Murray’s unequivocal stance to speak up for the women set a precedent. Now, against the backdrop of the overwhelming emotions coming forth after his shock announcement about his impending retirement, reactions to the Briton’s viewpoint have been conveniently airbrushed. However, back when he had stood up for the cause – so to speak – Murray was cast as a pariah, by many in the same fold.

A similar turnaround has, then, been effectuated about his decision to appoint Amelie Mauresmo as his coach, between now and then. When Murray engaged Mauresmo as his coach in 2014, disparagements shrouded as banter greeted his move, pitting it as a step-down of sorts after Ivan Lendl. To the relentless critics, it did not matter that under the guidance of the Frenchwoman, Murray won his first Masters 1000 on clay – in Madrid in 2015 – or that he continued the established trend of being a fixture in the finals of the Majors (with two consecutive trips to the Australian Open final Sunday in 2015-16).

Cut to 2018, merely two years after Mauresmo and Murray parted ways, as Mauresmo resumed her coaching career by joining compatriot Lucas Pouille’s team, opinions veered towards cheers and acceptance as though it was no big deal in the scheme of things. While this was indeed a change for the better, it still hit harder that it was not the case the first time around when such unnecessary hue and cry was made about it.

At the same time, though, it is also fitting – at par with the theme of what Murray’s career has been, unbound and unfettered by conventions.

Murray started out as the beacon of deliverance for British tennis that had been long-parched, lacking a Major champion for years. And, in the decade-and-a-half that he unwound his way through the professional circuit, Murray not only lived up to those expectations – as stifling as they were at times – but also gave his country more reasons, beyond conventionality, to hope. Even beyond the scope of winning Wimbledon, as he transformed himself from an envisioned titlist at the Championships, to a multiple-time Major winner – coming close enough to completing the Grand Slam.

One looking to making the most of opportunities could do well to borrow a page from Murray’s 2016 manual, in which he pushed his body to the limits of its endurance in trying to attain the world no. 1 ranking for the first time in his career. Time, though will suck in the allure of that accomplishment just as it would blot the other numbers that form the stockpile of his career. However, Murray’s long-lasting legacy will be of being an inspiration, who was not only unfettered by conventions, but also impervious to time-bound limitations.

“The Wimbledon Final That Never Was” Among New Chapter Press Christmas Gift Book Offerings

“The Wimbledon Final That Never Was” along with “The Greatest Tennis Matches of All Time” by Steve Flink and “The Secrets of Spanish Tennis” by Chris Lewit among offerings for tennis fans

The only time in the history of Wimbledon that the men’s singles final was not played is incredibly told in detail by the crowned champion, Sidney Wood, in his illuminating tennis biography “The Wimbledon Final That Never Was… And Other Tennis Tales Of A By-Gone Era.”

Wood won the 1931 Wimbledon title by default over Frank Shields—his school buddy, doubles partner, roommate, Davis Cup teammate and the grandfather of actress and model Brooke Shields—in one of the most curious episodes in sports history. In reaching the final, Shields posted one of the most heroic conclusions to a Wimbledon tennis match, in a scene somewhere reminiscent to the baseball scene in the movie “The Natural” starring Robert Redford.

Wood tells the tale of how Shields was ordered by the U.S. Tennis Association not to compete in the championship match so that he could rest his injured knee in preparation for an upcoming Davis Cup match. Three years later the story continues when he and Shields played a match at the Queen’s Club for the Wimbledon trophy. Also included are a compilation of short stories that deliver fascinating anecdotes of the 1930s and a signature document of the play and styles of 20th-century tennis legends. The book is for sale for $19.95 here https://www.amazon.com/dp/0942257847/ref=cm_sw_r_tw_dp_U_x_6LUjAb1CNQJSG

“The Greatest Tennis Matches of All Time” features profiles and rankings of the greatest matches of all time dating from the1920s featuring Bill Tilden and Suzanne Lenglen up through the modern era of tennis featuring contemporary stars Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova. Flink breaks down, analyzes and puts into historical context the sport’s most memorable matches, providing readers with a courtside seat at these most celebrated and significant duels. Flink also includes a fascinating “greatest strokes of all-time” section where he ranks and describes the players who best executed all the important shots in the game through the years.

The hard-cover book, that makes for a centerpiece of a coffee table or at your local tennis club, retails for $28.95, and can be purchased here on Amazon.com https://www.amazon.com/dp/0942257936/ref=cm_sw_r_tw_dp_x_Qj-rybVBRK7ZW or at www.NewChapterMedia.com and where ever books are sold.

Flink, one of the most respected writers and observers in the game, is currently a columnist for Tennis.com. A resident of Katonah, N.Y., he is the former editor of World Tennis magazine and a former senior columnist at Tennis Week. The book has received high praise from some of the most respected names in the sport, including Chris Evert, a winner of 18 major singles titles in her career, who wrote the foreword to the book. Said seven-time Wimbledon champion Pete Sampras, “Steve Flink was there reporting on almost every big match I played in my career. He has seen all of the great players for the last 45 years. I encourage you to read this book because Steve is one of the most insightful writers on the game that I have known and he really knows his tennis.”

The Secrets of Spanish Tennis ($19.95 for sale here https://www.amazon.com/dp/1937559491/ref=cm_sw_r_tw_dp_U_x_2DUjAb11C47RB) by New York City elite tennis teaching professional Chris Lewit, is the culmination of years of study on the Spanish way of training by Lewit, who visited many of the top Spanish academies and studied and interviewed some of the leading coaches in Spain to discern and distill this unique and special training methodology.

The Greatest Jewish Tennis Players of All Time ($19.95 for sale here https://www.amazon.com/dp/193755936X/ref=cm_sw_r_tw_dp_U_x_WKUjAbQJMXVJG) by tennis journalist Sandra Harwitt is unique among other books on tennis as it is a guide to the best and most influential Jewish tennis players in the history of the sport. It includes features and biographies of the greatest players, stories of both break-out success and anti-Semitism. This history also discusses the ways in which Jewish individuals have been instrumental behind the scenes, playing key roles in the growth of tennis into one of the world’s most popular sports.

Other recommended tennis titles are as follows;

Titanic: The Tennis Story ($19.95 for sale here https://www.amazon.com/dp/1937559041/ref=cm_sw_r_tw_dp_U_x_FNUjAbV8X1V9K) by Lindsay Gibbs is the stirring and remarkable historical novel that tells the story of the intertwined life of Dick Williams and Karl Behr who survived the sinking of the Titanic and went on to have Hall of Fame tennis careers. Two years after both had harrowing escapes from the famous disaster, the two met in the quarterfinals of the modern-day U.S. Open. An emotional and touching work, this novel brings one of the most extraordinary sports stories to life in literary form. This real-life account – with an ending seemingly plucked out of a Hollywood screenplay – weaves the themes of love, tragedy, history, sport and perseverance.

On This Day In Tennis History ($19.95, 528 pages, for sale here https://www.amazon.com/dp/0942257421/ref=cm_sw_r_tw_dp_U_x_HOUjAbD91C0SF) is a fun and fact-filled, this compilation offers anniversaries, summaries, and anecdotes of events from the world of tennis for every day in the calendar year written by Randy Walker. Presented in a day-by-day format, the entries into this mini-encyclopedia include major tournament victory dates, summaries of the greatest matches ever played, trivia, and statistics as well as little-known and quirky happenings.

Macci Magic: Extracting Greatness From Yourself And Others by Rick Macci ($19.95 for sale here https://www.amazon.com/dp/1937559254/ref=cm_sw_r_tw_dp_U_x_XPUjAbS7M86V5) offers the secrets to success both on and off the tennis court by master coach and motivator Rick Macci, who coached tennis superstars Venus and Serena Williams, Jennifer Capriati, Andy Roddick and Maria Sharapova among others. Through anecdotes and more than 100 sayings that exemplify his teaching philosophy, this inspirational manual helps pave the way to great achievement not only in tennis, but in business and in life.

Agnieszka Radwanska Announces Retirement

Poland’s Agnieszka Radwanska announced today her retirement from professional tennis. She leaves the game following 20 career WTA singles titles, highlighted by the 2015 BNP Paribas WTA Finals Singapore presented by SC Global trophy.

Radwanska reached her lone Grand Slam singles final at 2012 Wimbledon, which helped her reach a career high ranking of WTA World No.2. She earned over $27.6 million in prize money over her career, which currently ranks seventh on the all-time career prize money earnings list.

“Today, after 13 years of playing tennis competitively, I have decided to end my career,” said Radwanska in her statement. “This was not an easy decision. I am grateful to have so many special memories, including 20 WTA titles, the WTA Championships in Singapore, a Wimbledon final, and so many others.”

In addition to her on court accomplishments, Radwanska, also known as “the Magician” by fans and media due to her crafty style of play, was voted the WTA Fan Favorite for six consecutive years.

“Congratulations to Agnieszka on an outstanding career,” said WTA CEO and Chairman Steve Simon. “Agnieszka embodies the qualities that make a true champion, on the court delivering world class performances and incredible displays of athleticism, and off the court with her poise, professionalism and support for her fellow players. Agnieszka leaves a legacy on the game across the globe and on behalf of the WTA, she will truly be missed.”

Radwanska played her last professional match in September at the KEB Hana Bank Incheon Airport Korea Open in Seoul.