News & Press

Monday, June 29, 2009

Valeria Solovieva of Russia broke British hearts when she outlasted 12th seeded Heather Watson

Valeria Solovieva of Russia broke British hearts when she outlasted 12th seeded Heather Watson, 6-4; 1-6; 6-4 this morning on a very hot court 19. However, both players are used to tropical temperatures as they both reside in Florida, USA.

"Actually it was hard to play because people would support her all match long," said Lera, who lost the middle set and was down 2-0 in the third set. "I had to grind every single ball to get back in the match."

Lera, as she prefers to be known, has been very unfortunate with injuries. At the 2007 Roland Garros she broke a bone in her foot which sidelined her for four months. Then at the 2008 Italian Open she broke a bone in her right wrist, which required surgery and she missed playing tennis for nearly eight months. She resumed her tennis career at the Eddie Herr International that same year and has been going from strength to strength ever since. Now making her first Wimbledon appearance and winning the first round. Lera could not be happier.

Lera advances to the second round at Wimbledon

Young Briton Heather Watson crashed out of the first round of the girls singles 6-4, 1-6, 6-4 against Russia's Valeria Solovieva on Court 19 today, prompting her to smash her racquet on the court.

So angry was Watson that she threw racquest so hard that it bounced all the way from the baseline to the umpire's chair.

The 17-year-old 12th seed from the Channel Islands saw Solovieva take an early lead but bounced back strongly to dominate the second set by taking the ball early and moving the Russian around the court.

Watson had a break point in the sixth game but let it slip and then saw her opponent resort to high balls to stay in the rallies.

This tactic was enough to unsettle the Briton, who wasted a golden opportunity to progress.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Tecau moves into the third round of Wimbledon

Andrei Pavel and Horia Tecau of Romania have beaten the Americans, Eric Butorac and Scott Lipsky, 6-4, 6-7 (9-11), 3-6, 6-4, 15-13.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Former Baylor Tennis Star Wins Opening Round At Wimbledon

WIMBLEDON, ENGLAND (June 23, 2009) - Former Baylor Bear Benjamin Becker cruised to an opening round victory at Wimbledon, taking down Roko Karanusic 6-4, 6-4, 6-1.

Becker is fresh off his first ATP Singles title at the Ordina Open. His ranking jumped all the way to 49th in the world with the tournament victory.

Becker will now face no. 26 Jurgen Melzer in round 2. With a second round win, Becker could square off with sixth-ranked, USA star Andy Roddick in round 3.

Spadea wins first round at Wimbledon

Vince Spadea won in his first round clash with Paul Capdeville

Johansson off to great start at Wimbledon

Melanie South was beaten by France's Mathilde Johansson despite a brave fight in the first round at Wimbledon.

A crucial break in the decisive game allowed Johansson to take the first set 7-5, the players having traded two earlier breaks apiece.

The second set went with serve throughout and South led 4-2 in the tie-break but Johansson battled back to win 7-5 7-6 (7-5).

First Time ATP World Tour Winner Spotlight: Benjamin Becker

Benjamin Becker© AFP/Getty ImagesBenjamin Becker

German Benjamin Becker became the first qualifier to win an ATP World Tour tournament in 2009 as he dashed the hopes of Dutch wild card Raemon Sluiter 7-5, 6-3 on Saturday to clinch the title at the Ordina Open, an ATP World Tour 250 tennis tournament in ‘s-Hertogenbosch.

At the age of 28, Becker captured his first ATP World Tour title in his second final attempt – having finished runner-up at Bangkok in 2007 (l. to Tursunov). The Merzig native is the first German to triumph in ‘s-Hertogenbosch since Michael Stich lifted the trophy in 1992.

The right-hander is the one of three qualifiers to reach an ATP World Tour final in 2009, joining Russian Evgeny Korolev – who finished runner-up at Delray Beach (l. to Fish) in February – and today’s runner-up in Eastbourne, Frank Dancevic of Canada. caught up with Becker after his maiden triumph.

How does it feel to capture your first ATP World Tour title as a qualifier?
It’s great. It’s a little bit unexpected but obviously it’s a great achievement for me. It’s something you work for and you always dream of and to actually achieve it is a very nice feeling.

Is this a belated birthday present to yourself since you just turned 28 four days ago?
Yeah, of course! I didn’t think about it that I wanted to give myself a present, but obviously it’s great that it happened in the same week and I will always remember this birthday now.

As a youngster growing up, was it a dream of one day winning an ATP World Tour title? Did you think it would come sooner than 28?
No, not at all because I knew how tough it is. I always had this dream of winning a title, but to actually achieve it is really hard. So you don’t expect it to come right away - you know it takes some time, some effort, a lot of training and a little bit of luck obviously during the week and it happened to me this week.

You defeated a Top 10 player and top seed (Verdasco), a former champion (Llodra) and a countryman (Schuettler) before beating a surprise finalist (Sluiter). Talk about the players you beat this week?
Obviously I beat really good guys. I told myself, when I went into the final, I had a really good run, I beat really good grass-court players and to feel comfortable about myself and I did. To beat those guys within a week is a great achievement for me and a great sign that I really can play consistently for the week and even longer I hope. That’s why it really feels great to have a title and beating good guys like this.

You played very well throughout the tournament, only losing one set in the main draw. What area of your game were you most pleased with?
I really served well. That obviously makes a difference when you serve well and you can hold your service games easily. It takes a little bit of the pressure off when you return and puts a little bit more pressure on the other guy. It really made a difference that I served well on the important points; I remember a few points against Verdasco that I served aces when he had chances to break me. It just happened that I played the important points well and used my weapons and that made a big difference.

Coming into your second ATP World Tour final, did you prepare differently this time around from the first final?
I was a little bit less nervous I would say; in the first final I almost couldn’t play! This final, I had already been there once and it’s a little bit different. I didn’t do anything special. I’ve been a few Challenger finals before so I just tried to do the same thing as I had done there, just the same thing as always and just enjoy it to be here again on the last day.

You slipped to No. 130 last year and now you are on your way back into Top 50 and higher. You're improved your ranking with four Challenger titles already and what was your goal for this year?
Well my first goal was to be back in the Top 100. I achieved it a few weeks ago and now we’ll just see. Wimbledon is coming up so quick now and the big tournaments are coming up and I will just try to keep my level, try to play consistently and just try and do my best and see where I end up at the end of the season. So I won’t have a specific goal, I just want to play good tennis for the whole year now.

How did you end up going to Baylor University and could you reflect back on your college days?
Baylor was a great place for me. I really developed my game there, I developed as a person there – so it was a really good decision for me to go there. I had a lot of fun and it’s a big part of who I am and the way I play today so it was a good decision, a lot of fun, and I would do it anytime again.

Is there anyone you would like to acknowledge for helping you get where you are today in tennis?
A lot of people, starting from my first coach to my new coach now. Tarik Benhabiles, who has helped me a lot toward the first two-three years of my career obviously had a big impact on me. All the coaches have an impact on you, they develop you as a player. Every coach has a different impact on you so it’s all just a question of how you absorb it and do something with it. Everyone who supports you, your family and friends, I had a lot of them here today and that makes you feel good and comfortable on the court.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Qualifier Becker Clinches Maiden Title

's-Hertogenbosch, The Netherlands

Benjamin Becker© AFP/Getty ImagesBenjamin Becker

German Benjamin Becker became the first qualifier to win an ATP World Tour tournament this season as he dashed the hopes of Dutch wild card Raemon Sluiter 7-5, 6-3 on Saturday to clinch the title at the Ordina Open, an ATP World Tour 250 tennis tournament in ‘s-Hertogenbosch.

In reward for his achievement, the No. 82-ranked Becker will receive 250 South African Airways 2009 ATP Ranking points and €71,700, while World No. 866 Sluiter earns 150 Ranking points and €37,700.

At the age of 28, Becker captured his first ATP World Tour title in his second final attempt – having finished runner-up at Bangkok in 2007 (l. to Tursunov). The Merzig native is the first German to triumph in ‘s-Hertogenbosch since Michael Stich lifted the trophy in 1992.

The right-hander is the one of three qualifiers to reach an ATP World Tour final in 2009, joining Russian Evgeny Korolev – who finished runner-up at Delray Beach (l. to Fish) in February – and today’s runner-up in Eastbourne, Frank Dancevic of Canada.

After a dream run through to the final, including victories over top seed Fernando Verdasco and No. 4 Rainer Schuettler, Becker found it had to break down the resilient Sluiter in the first set of Saturday’s final. However, after squandering two break points in the sixth game of the 42-minute first set, Becker capilatised on his opportunities at the second time of asking in the 12th game as he broke Sluiter to claim the one-set lead. The German then pressed home his advantage early in the second set, breaking Sluiter in the second game before going on to close out victory after one hour and 15 minutes.

Becker was effective on serve, only surrendering five points behind his first serve, and did not face a single break point in the championship match. He becomes the first qualifier to lift the Ordina Open trophy after Guillaume Raoux lost to Richard Krajicek in the 1997 final and Peter Wessels finished runner-up to Ivan Ljubicic in 2007.

Becker, who reached his first ATP World Tour quarter-final of the season last week in Halle (l. to Rochus), improved to an 8-3 match record in 2009 – with seven of those wins coming on grass. Coming into the Ordina Open, he had jumped 48 places in the South African Airways 2009 ATP Rankings since the end of 2008 courtesy of winning four titles on the ATP Challenger Tour.

The 31-year-old Sluiter was bidding to make history by becoming the lowest-ranked player ever to win an ATP World Tour singles title and is already the lowest-ranked player to reach a final.

The Rotterdam native was hoping to win his first ATP World Tour title in his fourth final after finishing runner-up in three previous attempts – all of which came on home soil at 2000 Amsterdam (l. to Gustafsson), 2003 Rotterdam (l. to Mirnyi) and 2003 Amersfoort (l. to Massu).



For the first time in his career, Benjamin Becker has won an ATP-tournament. Today he defeated the Dutchman Raemon Sluiter in the final of the Ordina Open in Rosmalen. Becker won in two sets: 7-5, 6-3.

Becker entered the main tournament as a qualifier. Before reaching the final of the main tournament, he defeated Florent Serra, Fernando Verdasco, Michael Llodra and Rainer Schüttler.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Becker Fights Back For Final Berth

Benjamin Becker© Getty ImagesBenjamin Becker

Qualifier Benjamin Becker recovered from a slow start to defeat fourth-seeded German compatriot Rainer Schuettler 3-6, 7-5, 6-1 on Friday for a place in the Ordina Open final. Becker hit seven aces, won 64 per cent of service points and converted five of eight break point opportunities for victory in one hour and 44 minutes.

Becker is the second qualifier to reach an ATP World Tour final this season, joining Russian Evgeny Korolev who accomplished the feat at Delray Beach (l. to Fish). It will be his first ATP World Tour final since September 2007 at Bangkok (l. to Tursunov).

Becker, who also beat Schuettler at Halle in three sets last week, is the first German to reach the Ordina Open final since Karsten Braasch finished runner-up in 1994. The World No. 82 is also the third qualifier to reach Ordina Open final. Guillaume Raoux was a finalist in 1997 when the event was held at Rosmalen (l. to Krajicek), and Peter Wessels in 2007 (l. to Ljubicic).

The 27-year-old Becker improved to 7-3 on the 2009 ATP World Tour season (6-1 on grass courts), while 33-year-old Schuettler dropped to 10-17 on the year – highlighted by one semi-final at Chennai. Schuettler saved three match points in a quarter-final win over seventh seed Jeremy Chardy on Thursday.

In Saturday’s final Becker will meet either Dutch wild card Raemon Sluiter – who at World No. 866, would be the lowest-ranked player in history to reach an ATP World Tour final – or 31-year-old Spaniard Ivan Navarro.

The Ordina Open, in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, is an ATP World Tour 250 grass-court tennis tournament.


Benjamin Becker is playing the men´s singles final of the Ordina Open this Saturday. Becker, who entered the tournament as a qualifier, defeated his countryman Rainer Schüttler in three sets: 3-6, 7-5 and 6-1.

Both Germans mainly played round the baseline. Initially, Schüttler seemed to have better control of the match, but just when he served for matchpoint, Becker gave it one last try. It was 3-5 in the second set but he broke Schüttler’s serve twice, won the set and needed very few effort in the third set to secure his place in the final. In the final Becker faces the winner of the match Raemon Sluiter vs. Ivan Navarro.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Becker is in the semi-finals

Benjamin Becker is in the semi-finals. Earlier today he defeated his French opponent Michael Llodra in an exciting match: 7-6, 7-5.

Becker now has to play against either Rainer Schüttler or Jeremy Chardy.

Becker upsets top seed Verdasco in birthday win

Becker reaches Ordina quarterfinals — Benjamin Becker celebrated his 28th birthday by upsetting top-seeded Fernando Verdasco 7-5, 7-6 (4) to reach the Ordina Open quarterfinals.

“It is without doubt one of the biggest wins of my career,” Becker said.

Sunday, June 07, 2009


Benjamin Becker made a strong start on home turf at the Gerry Weber Open in Halle, Germany, as he dismissed Victor Hanescu 6-4, 6-4 Monday to reach the second round of the ATP World Tour 250 tennis tournament.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Dlouhy-Paes Rally To Capture First Grand Slam Title Together

Third seeds Lukas Dlouhy and Leander Paes captured their first Grand Slam title together after rallying past unseeded Wesley Moodie and Dick Norman 3-6, 6-3, 6-2 in the Roland Garros championship in Paris on Saturday.

The Czech-Indian duo, who teamed up one year ago at Roland Garros, won their second title together ('08 Bangkok). It was the first Grand Slam doubles title in four finals for Dlouhy and the fifth crown in 10 finals for Paes. They are 2-3 lifetime in finals together.

Dlouhy was runner-up at Roland Garros two years ago (w/Vizner) and at the US Open in 2007 (w/Vizner) and last year (w/Paes). Paes won for the third time at Roland Garros after teaming with countryman Mahesh Bhupathi to earn titles in 1999 and 2001. He also won at Wimbledon in 1999 (w/Bhupathi) and the US Open in 2006 (w/Damm).

In the opening set, Dlouhy was broken in the second game, which proved to be the difference. In the third game, Paes was hit in the eye by a Norman volley at the net. He was treated with ice and was able to come back with no problem. In the second set, Norman was broken in the second game and Moodie in the fourth game as Dlouhy-Paes raced out to a 5-0 lead. Paes was broken in the seventh game but Dlouhy served it out to level the match.

In the decisive set, Moodie was broken at 0-40 in the third game and the South African lost his serve again in the seventh game. Paes secured the one hour and 40-minute victory by serving it out.

"I think it's fantastic to actually win a title, especially when you're playing with Lukas who is in a Grand Slam final and winning for the first time," said Paes. "The momentum of the mind in a final goes up and down, and we've played quite a few finals together, the US Open last year. We had a tough loss in the semi-finals of Wimbledon last year. To work with someone who is willing to put his best foot forward is a really big thrill.

"It's not always about trying to hit a better return or a better serve. It's all about the mind. That's what I appreciate about Lukas. He comes out there and he tries to be a better player every single day. That's really fun, too, and a pleasure to play with."

It was the sixth career tour level title for Dlouhy, who is the seventh different player from the Czech Republic to win a Grand Slam doubles crown in the Open Era, and the 40th for Paes.

"It's a great feeling to win this, such a big event, especially it's the first Grand Slam title," said Dlouhy. "I'm so happy about it. I have to thank my partner, Leander to carry me the all two weeks, and of course the coach and all the guys who were here with us to make a good atmosphere and be relaxed for the match."

Moodie and Norman were making their third tournament appearance together, their first in a Grand Slam tournament. They upset No. 7 seeds Max Mirnyi and Andy Ram in the first round and saved three match points in their semi-final win over No. 2 seeds Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan.

Moodie, who won Wimbledon in 2005 (w/Huss), was appearing in his second Grand Slam final. He owns four career doubles titles. Norman, at 38 years, 3 months, was making his doubles debut at Roland Garros and he was the oldest player to reach the final in Paris in the Open Era. The Belgian was looking to win his third tour level doubles title of his career ('09 Johannesburg, '07 Chennai).

Dlouhy and Paes won 84 per cent of first serve points comparied to Moodie and Norman's 57 per cent. The winning squad converted four of six break points and they saved two of four on their serve.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Paes-Dlouhy display feat of clay

Paris: Leander Paes and Lukas Dlouhy stunned the top seeded pair of Daniel Nestor and Nenad Zimonjic in straight sets to reach the men's doubles final of the French Open here on Thursday.

The third-seeded Indo-Czech duo took one hour and 48 minutes to down their fancied rivals 7-6(7-4) 7-6(7-5) in the semifinals.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Lera movers into the quarterfinals at Rolland Garros

Valeria Solovieva, Russia, def. Beatrice Capra, United States, 6-2, 6-4. moving her into the quarterfinals. keep it up Lera ;)

Monday, June 01, 2009

Dlouhy, Paes in semi finals at Roland Garros

India's Leander Paes and Czech Lukas Dlouhy entered the French Open tennis doubles semi-final with a 6-2, 7-6(5) win over Bruno Soares of Brazil and Zimbabwean Kevin Ullyett in Paris on Monday.

The third-seeded Indo-Czech pair broke the fifth-seeded pair of Soares and Ullyett thrice to close the match in 88 minutes.

Paes and Dlouhy have lost just a set on their way to the semi-finals and will face either the top seeds and 2008 finalists Daniel Nestor and Nenad Zimonjic or Russians Igor Kunitsyn and Dmitry Tursunov.