Meltzer and Petzschner Qualify for ATP world Tour Finals

LONDON, ENGLAND – Jurgen Melzer and Philipp Petzschner have qualified for the season-ending Barclays ATP World Tour Finals, scheduled to take place at The O2 in London from 21-28 November. The Austrian-German team joins the world’s top 2 doubles teams, Bob Bryan & Mike Bryan and Daniel Nestor & Nenad Zimonjic, as the first three teams to qualify for the doubles event.

Melzer & Petzschner currently stand in 7th place in the 2010 ATP Doubles Team Rankings, but they are nevertheless assured of their place in London by virtue of their Wimbledon Grand Slam title combined with a guaranteed finish inside the world’s top 20.

The team’s qualification was confirmed following Bob and Mike Bryan’s triumph over Rohan Bopanna and Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi in last weekend’s US Open final. The Indian-Pakistani team represented the only remaining threat to the Wimbledon champions, but defeat for Bopanna and Qureshi at Flushing Meadows finally sealed qualification for Melzer & Petzschner regardless of whether they finish inside the Top 8 of the 2010 ATP Doubles Team Rankings.

The remaining 2010 Grand Slam winning teams – Bryan/Bryan (Australian Open & US Open) & Nestor/Zimonjic (Roland Garros) – have already qualified thanks to guaranteed finishes inside the year-end Top 8.

Following his qualification in doubles, Melzer has now set his sights on making history by becoming the first player to qualify in both singles and doubles at the season-ending event since Emilio Sanchez (w/Casal) in 1990. Currently lying in 11th place in the Year-To-Date South African Airways 2010 ATP Rankings, Melzer is poised to challenge for one of the elite eight singles berths as the season unfolds over the next two months.

“To qualify for the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in London is one of the best things you can do. It’s great to qualify in doubles already and we look forward to being there. Of course, it would be great to be there in singles as well – it would be a huge achievement. If you qualify in singles and doubles, it means you’ve had one hell of a season!” said the Austrian No.1.

Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer have already qualified for the season-ending singles event. The remaining six places are still up for grabs, as a chasing pack featuring the likes of Andy Murray, Novak Djokovic and Andy Roddick continue to battle for rankings points at ATP World Tour events during the remainder of the season in order to finish among the Top 8.

Barclays ATP World Tour Finals – The Contenders
Year-to-Date South African Airways 2010 ATP Rankings & 2010 ATP Doubles Team Rankings
Rank Player Points* Rank Team Points
1 R. Nadal (ESP) 10,840 1 Bryan/Bryan 9,875
2 R. Federer (SUI) 6,025 2 Nestor/Zimonjic 7,325
3 N. Djokovic (SRB) 4,755 3 Dlouhy/Paes 3,835
4 A. Murray (GRB) 4,045 4 Kubot/Marach 2,925
5 R. Soderling (SWE) 3,960 5 Moodie/Norman 2,880
6 T. Berdych (CZE) 3,535 6 Bopanna/Qureshi 2,800
7 A. Roddick (USA) 3,170 7 Bhupathi/Mirnyi 2,745
8 F. Verdasco (ESP) 3,140 7=. Melzer/Petzschner 2,745
- – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – - - – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – -
9 D. Ferrer (ESP) 3,000 9 Aspelin/Hanley 2,690
10 M. Youzhny (RUS) 2,510 10 Lindstedt/Tecau 2,650

Players in bold have qualified.
* Year-to-Date South African Airways 2010 ATP Rankings FAQ

A Deep Field for the Bell Challenge

Montreal, September 13, 2010 A deep field which includes three Top 30 players will battle for top honours this week at the Bell Challenge, a $220,000 WTA Tour event currently underway in Quebec City.

A pair of Frenchwomen, world no. 14 Marion Bartoli and world no. 20 Aravane Rezai, lead arguably the deepest field in tournament history, one which also bodes 2009 finalist Lucie Safarova of the Czech Republic and four Canadians. In fact, Heidi El Tabakh (Oakville, ON) and Rebecca Marino (Vancouver, BC) will face off in an all-Canadian first round encounter this evening at PEPS on the campus of Laval University with the winner slated to face Bartoli in round two. Stéphanie Dubois (Laval, QC) will play seventh-seeded Olga Govortsova of Belarus in her first round match while Valérie Tétreault (St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, QC) will go up against fourth-seeded Barbora Zahlavova Strycova of the Czech Republic, the same player she beat in the first round last year in Quebec City.

Visit www.challengebell.com for all of the latest news and results from the Challenge Bell.

Canada set for Davis Cup battle with the Dominican Republic this weekend

The Miele Canadian Davis Cup team of Frank Dancevic (Niagara Falls, ON), Daniel Nestor (Toronto, ON), Peter Polansky (Thornhill, ON) and Milos Raonic (Thornhill, ON) will take on the Dominican Republic this weekend in a Davis Cup by BNP Paribas Americas Zone Group I second round play-off tie at the Rexall Centre in Toronto. The opening singles matches will be played on Friday beginning at 11 a.m. Tickets start as low as $10 and can be purchased by calling 1-877-2TENNIS. The tie will also be webcast live on www.lovemeansnothing.ca

Dubois, Tétreault and Marino head players list for Saguenay National Bank Challenger

The players list for the 2010 Saguenay National Bank Challenger to be held from September 18-26 was unveiled last week and a Canadian trio tops this year’s field which also includes a former champion and some former Top 50 players. Stéphanie Dubois, Valérie Tétreault, Heidi El Tabakh, Rebecca Marino, Eugenie Bouchard (Westmount, QC) and Gabriela Dabrowski (Ottawa, ON) have all earned direct entry into the main draw. Meanwhile, Élisabeth Abanda (Montreal, QC), Katarena Paliivets (Richmond Hill, ON) and Ekaterina Shulaeva (Oakville, ON) have been awarded main draw wildcards by Tennis Canada.

This year’s players list also includes 2008 Saguenay champion Alexa Glatch of the United States, 2009 singles finalist and doubles champion Severine Beltrame of France who is also a former Top 50 player as is fellow entrant Marina Erakovic of New Zealand.

Brits dominate ITF wheelchair event in Montreal

Some of the world’s top wheelchair tennis players were at Uniprix Stadium in Montreal over the weekend to compete in the Tennis Canada International Championships, an ITF2 Series event. In the end, it was the Brits who dominated, sweeping the singles titles and exceling in doubles. World No. 16 Gordon Reid was crowned champion in men’s singles, World No. 9 Lucy Shuker won the women’s title and Jamie Burdekin claimed top honours in the quad division. The tournament’s top Canadian was Gary Luker (Stoney Creek, ON) who was a finalist in singles and doubles in the quad draws. Visit www.lovemeansnothing.ca for all of the final results.

Marino and Raonic Set To Make Debuts at the US Open

Montreal, August 30, 2010 – Two of Canada’s rising young stars will experience the biggest moment of their professional careers on Monday when they take to the court for their first Grand Slam main draw match at the U.S. Open in Flushing Meadows, New York.

Rebecca Marino (Vancouver, BC) and Milos Raonic (Thornhill, ON), both 19 years of age, won three tough qualifying matches over the weekend to earn a coveted spot in the main draw of the final Grand Slam of the season. Marino beat fellow Canadian Sharon Fichman (Toronto, ON) in the final round on Sunday and will take on Ksenia Pervak of Russia, ranked no. 100 in the world, in her Major debut. For his part, Raonic continued his impressive summer and beat three quality players en route to a main draw berth. He will take on Australia’s Carsten Ball, ranked no. 145 on the ATP rankings. Not to be outdone, Peter Polansky (Thornhill, ON) was the third Canadian to successfully qualify for the U.S. Open main draw and in doing so for the second consecutive year, he earned the right to play Argentine Juan Monaco, seeded 30th in the tournament, in his first round match on Tuesday. This marks the first time this season that a Canadian man will play in the main draw of a Grand Slam and the first time since last year’s Australian Open that there will be two men taking part in the big dance.

Meanwhile, Canada’s top player, Aleksandra Wozniak (Blainville, QC) will also begin her U.S. Open campaign on Monday against Australian qualifier Sally Peers, ranked no. 201 in the world. Recovering from forearm tendinitis, Wozniak hopes to repeat her performance from a year ago when she reached the third round in New York and defeated Amélie Mauresmo in the process.

Daniel Nestor (Toronto, ON), Marie-Ève Pelletier (Repentigny, QC) and Wozniak will be Canada’s three representatives in doubles at the final Major of 2010. Seeded second in the men’s draw, Nestor and his Serbian partner Nenad Zimonjic will go up against Eric Butorac and Jean-Julien Roger in their first round encounter. For her part, Pelletier will be testing the waters with a new partner this week in Michaella Krajicek of the
Netherlands. The pair will open against the thirteenth-seeded team of Monica Niculescu and Shahar Peer.

Wozniak will team up with Russia’s Anna Chakvetadze and they will battle the Swedish duo of Sofia Arvidsson and Johanna Larsson.
Top juniors head to Repentigny for prestigious event.The best junior players in the world are in Repentigny this week to make their final U.S. Open preparations this week at the National Bank Canadian International Junior Open, a prestigious Grade 1 event on the ITF Junior
Circuit which is celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2010.

Gabriela Dabrowski (Ottawa, ON), Eugenie Bouchard (Westmount, QC), Élisabeth and Françoise Abanda (Montreal, QC) and Filip Peliwo (Vancouver, BC) are just a few of the Canadian names who will go head-tohead with the world’s best at the biggest junior tournament in Canada.

The ladies will take centre stage on Monday at Parc Larochelle with singles and doubles action in the girls draws while the boys will take their turn on Tuesday. For all of the latest results, please visit the tournament’s official website www.tennis-junior-repentigny.com.

Bryan Brothers Capture Fourth Australian Open Title

January 31, 2010 – Bordentown, NJ, – Defending champions Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan took home their second consecutive men’s doubles crown at the 2010 Australian Open Saturday evening and their eighth Grand Slam title overall beating rivals Daniel Nestor and Nenad Zimonjic in three sets, 6-3, 6-7, 6-3.

With their EXO3 Ignite Team 95 racquets, which they switched to late last year, the 31-year old American twins are now just four titles away from reaching the all-time record, currently held by Australian greats Todd Woodbridge and Mark Woodforde with 61.

“It feels great to come back to Melbourne and defend our title, capture another Grand Slam and take one step closer to the all-time title record,” said Bob Bryan.  “It is exactly how we hoped to kick-off 2010.”

The Bryans decided late last year to make a switch in racquets in order to achieve more control while still getting the ‘pop’ they need on serves and ground strokes.  Their decision, after hitting only a few balls, was to pick up EXO3 technology and come down a bit in head size with the  EXO3 Ignite Team 95.

“It is crucial in doubles to keep return of serves low and we feel as though we have better ability to do that with the  EXO3 Ignite Team.  But while it gives us added control and maneuverability, we are still able to deliver the power and pace we need on our serves and balls hit from the baseline,” said Bob Bryan.  “It is just a fantastic all-court racquet and one of the things we loved instantly was the ‘clunk’ solid sound it makes upon ball strike.”

“The doubles game is getting better.  Teams are improving and strong singles players on tour are starting to learn how to play.  We need to continue to get better and evolve our game and without question we think we have improved since making the racquet switch.  It was important for me to be able to carve out some more angles at net and do more with short balls,” said Mike Bryan.

The switch has proved to be a smart move.  Aside from taking home the year’s first Grand Slam event, the Bryans executed a dramatic end to last season when for the fifth time, they ended the year as the world’s top team by winning the ATP Tour Doubles Finals in London.  They came into that tournament 800 points behind Nestor and  Zimonjic, but in the end, claimed the year-end No.1 ranking.

Even their father, coach Wayne Bryan, echoes Mike and Bob’s feelings about their new frames.  “The Bros. absolutely love them and say it has the best feel of any stick they have every played with – which really is a strong testament and says something special. And, they like the looks of it too. “

The Bryans are just two of more than 50 players on tour, including Nikolay Davydenko, Gael Monfils and Maria Sharapova among others, who are now taking advantage of Prince’s O-technology, a unique series of holes along the frame of the racquet.

More information on the Bryan Brothers, their  EXO3 Ignite Team 95 racquet, and all Prince players and products can be found at www.princetennis.com.

Federer Fined $1500 for Profanity At Open

NEW YORK – Now Roger Federer will have to pay for his mouth. After swearing at the chair umpire at the US Open Men’s Finals, the runner-up was fined $1500 for use of profanity.

Federer was arguing the allowance of use of instant replay after he held serve in the third set to make it 5-4. CBS microphones picked up the conversation which included swear words. The money will be docked from his prize money.

A total of $31,500 of fine money was collected this year led by Serena Williams $10,500. Vera Zvonareva and Daniel Koellerer also got fined $1500 each for obscenities a Daniel Nestor was fined $5000 for yelling obscenities at a fan.