Sebastian Baez Outlasts Alejandro Tabilo to Claim Chile Open Title

Sebastian Baez is rockin’ & rollin’ through South America…

The 23-year-old Argentine tennis player completed his South American clay-court swing on a high note on Sunday in Santiago, rallying past home favorite Alejandro Tabilo 3-6, 6-0, 6-4 in the final of the Chile Open to secure his second title in as many weeks.

Sebastian BaezLast week Baez triumphed at the ATP 500 in Rio de Janeiro.

Baez has won nine consecutive matches and will climb to a career-high No. 19 in the ATP Rankings on Monday.

He found his best tennis when it mattered most on Court Jaime Fillol, earning 12 of the championship clash’s final 16 games to emerge victorious after two hours and 14 minutes.

Baez’s winning streak appeared in jeopardy when this year’s Auckland champion Tabilo made a quick start in front of a partisan crowd. Chants of “Chi! Chi! Chi! Le! Le! Le! Viva Chile!” filled the air as day turned to night and the lefty moved to within a set of earning his second ATP Tour crown.

Tabilo also was able to draw confidence from the pair’s first ATP Head2Head meeting last year in Cordoba, which he won in straight sets. But one of the key differences in this encounter was how Baez performed under pressure.

When the pair met in Cordoba, Baez saved just one of the six break points he faced. In Santiago, he saved eight of 10 break points while converting five of his 16 opportunities according to Infosys ATP Stats.

After an uncharacteristically out-of-rhythm start from Baez, he locked in from the back of the court for the final two sets. Many rallies were grinding duels from behind the baseline and in those situations, Tabilo was unable to consistently find ways to put his opponent under duress.

Tabilo found his moments and hit some jaw-dropping shots, including a stunning backhand down the line to help him break back when Baez served for the match at 5-3 in the deciding set.

But the second seed was able to successfully ride those waves of momentum and rely on his heavy forehand to control the action. Despite losing serve on the verge of victory, he broke in the next game, hitting a final forehand winner to capture his fifth title since the start of the 2023 season.

Baez is now fifth in the ATP Live Race To Turin and is 16-5 in 2024. He’s trying to qualify for the ATP Finals for the first time.

With the win, he became the first player to win multiple titles during the South American clay-court swing since Cristian Garin in 2020.

Marcel Granollers & Horacio Zeballos Advance to Title Match at ATP Finals

Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos are one win away from the title…

The 37-year-old Spanish professional tennis player and his 38-year-old Argentine professional doubles partner have advanced to the championship match at the the Nitto ATP Finals for the first time together to keep their Year-End ATP Doubles No. 1 hopes alive.

Marcel Granollers & Horacio ZeballosGranollers and Zeballos, the tournament’s fifth seeds, overcame Rohan Bopanna and Matthew Ebden 7-5, 6-4 on Saturday after one hour and 20 minutes in Turin.

Granollers and Zeballos are making their fourth appearance together at the year-end event, where they lost in the semifinals in 2020 and 2021.

They’ll look to go all the way on Sunday when they meet defending champions Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury, who defeated fourth seeds Santiago Gonzalez of Mexico and Edouard Roger-Vasselin.

“We are very happy,” Granollers said. “It is our third semi-final here at the Finals and we are happy to be in the final this time. We will try to enjoy the match and play our best tennis.”

Granollers and Zeballos are up to third in the ATP Live Doubles Teams Rankings and will end the season in first place if they win the title in Turin. Already-eliminated Ivan Dodig and Austin Krajicek are currently first. Bopanna and Ebden are now out of the race.

“We tried to think that every match was a final because every match was against a great team,” Zeballos said on their run. “We tried to be positive and offensive and it is working so far so we will try the same tomorrow.”

Earlier this season, Granollers and Zeballos clinched the crown at the ATP Masters 1000 event in Shanghai. Granollers is chasing his second title at the year-end event having triumphed with Marc Lopez in 2012.

Competing inside the Pala Alpitour, Granollers and Zeballos were comfortable on serve and were clinical on return in crucial moments. They pounced on two inconsistent serving games from Ebden, one in each set, to earn victory.

Carlos Alcaraz Defeats Daniil Medvedev to Advance to Semifinals at ATP Finals

Carlos Alcaraz has advanced to his first ATP Finals semifinals…

The 20-year-old Spanish tennis player beat Daniil Medvedev 6-4, 6-4 on Friday to secure a spot in the semifinals of the ATP Finals in his tournament debut, setting up a match against top-ranked Novak Djokovic.

Carlos Alcaraz “It’s one of the most difficult challenges that I’m going to face, facing Novak in the ATP Finals, where he has won six times,” Alcaraz said. “Novak is Novak. He is the best player in the world right now. He’s lost just six matches this year. He’s unbelievable.”

Alcaraz and Djokovic have played each other four times and won two each. Djokovic won their most recent encounter in the final in Cincinnati in August, while Alcaraz was victorious in the Wimbledon final.

“I’m going to play my best tennis and enjoy it the same way I did the past few matches,” Alcaraz said. “I’m excited to face Novak.”

Alcaraz is the youngest ATP Finals semifinalist since Rafael Nadal in 2006.

After missing last year’s tournament because of an abdominal injury, Alcaraz got off to a shaky start at the season-ending event for the year’s top eight players.

He lost his opening match to two-time champion Alexander Zverev before getting back on track with a straight-sets win over Andrey Rublev.

That left him needing to beat Medvedev, who had already qualified for the semifinals, to advance. The Russian player didn’t make it easy.

Medvedev had two break points in the fourth game, but Alcaraz came out on top of a 33-shot rally and then produced another big serve before going on to hold.

In the seventh game, Alcaraz broke Medvedev to love for the lead. He then held three set points but needed only one to take the opener with a powerful, crosscourt backhand.

After wasting two break points in the third game of the second set, Alcaraz got the decisive break when Medvedev double-faulted to allow him to serve for the match.

“This match was really, really tough … but everything I did before this match I did almost perfectly so I’m really happy,” Alcaraz said.

With Alcaraz advancing, the top four players in the world have qualified for the semifinals. Medvedev will face Jannik Sinner. Since the ATP formed in 1990, it’s the fourth time the top four players all reached the semifinals at the ATP Finals, along with 1990, 2004 and 2020.

Marcel Granollers & Horacio Zeballos Advance to ATP Finals Doubles Semifinals

Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos remain perfect…

The 37-year-old Spanish professional tennis player and his 38-year-old Argentine professional doubles partner maintained their perfect start at the 2023 ATP Finals with a 6-3, 6-4 triumph against Maximo Gonzalez and Andres Molteni on Thursday in Turin, Italy.

Marcel Granollers & Horacio ZeballosGranollers and Zeballos notched a break in each set to wrap an 84-minute win and ensure they will finish at the top of Red Group with a 3-0 record.

They will now prepare for their third ATP Finals semifinal as a team, having also reached that stage in 2020 (in London) and 2021 (in Turin).

The win also kept alive Granollers and Zeballos’ hopes of clinching the Year-End ATP Doubles No. 1 honor for the first time.

The pair is currently fifth in the ATP Live Doubles Teams Rankings, but can jump to a first-place finish by lifting the ATP Finals trophy for the first time as a team.

Meanwhile, Mexico’s Santiago Gonzalez and his doubles partner, Edouard Roger-Vasselin, advanced from Red Group in second position after they saved a match point before downing top seeds Ivan Dodig and Austin Krajicek 6-4, 3-6, 15-13 earlier on Thursday.

Carlos Alcaraz Placed in Red Group for This Year’s ATP Finals

Carlos Alcaraz will be seeing red

The 20-year-old Spanish professional tennis player has been placed in the Red Group for the ATP Tour’s year-end ATP Finals tournament. The draw for the season-ending, eight-man finals was made Thursday.

Carlos AlcarazComing in as the second seed, Alcaraz will face Daniil MedvedevAndrey Rublev and Alexander Zverev in the round-robin stage.

Defending champion Novak Djokovic has been placed in a group with home favorite Jannik Sinner for the ATP Finals in Turin, where he needs to win just one match to end the year as world No. 1.

Djokovic will also face Stefanos Tsitsipas and Holger Rune in the Green Group for the round-robin stage.

The top two from each group advance to the semifinals.

Djokovic is bidding to win the event for a seventh time and has not lost a match since his defeat to Alcaraz in the Wimbledon final in July. He currently shares the record of six victories with Roger Federer.

Zverev has won the tournament twice, while Medvedev and Tsitsipas have one victory apiece.

The tournament starts Sunday, and the final is scheduled for November 19.

Santiago Gonzalez & Partner Edouard Roger-Vasselin Claim Paris Masters Men’s Doubles Title

Santiago Gonzalez is celebrating another title…

The 40-year-old Mexican professional player and his men’s doubles partner Edouard Roger-Vasselin have extended their late-season winning streak to eight to clinch the title at the Paris Masters.

Santiago Gonzalez & Edouard Roger-VasselinThe seventh-seeded duo defeated Rohan Bopanna and Matthew Ebden 6-2, 5-7, 10-7 to lift the trophy at the ATP Masters 1000 event in the French capital.

Gonzalez and Roger-Vasselin converted both break points they earned to claim the victory, holding firm after dropping their first set of the week in the championship match in Paris.

“The set we lost, it’s totally my fault. I did a pretty bad game in the second set, but Santi helped a lot at the changeover,” said home favorite Roger-Vasselin. “[He said] ‘It’s OK, we’re just going to fight every point and enjoy the crowd’. For me it’s super special to win here in Paris, so I’m really thankful to Santi. He played amazing all week, and I’m really happy to win this trophy here.”

Gonzalez and Roger-Vasselin, who also lifted the trophy in Basel a week ago, defeated the second, third and fourth-seeded pairs en route to their second Masters 1000 crown of the year.

The duo has qualified for the Nitto ATP Finals in Turin, where the pair will enter the prestigious season finale on a high.

“The last two weeks were amazing, ending the year like this and now going to Turin with confidence,” said Gonzalez. “We are happy to win our second Masters title of this year, so we are very pleased about it and hopefully we can keep it going.”

Gonzalez and Roger-Vasselin are now 51-21 in their first full season together on the ATP Tour.

They became champions in Marseille, Miami and Los Cabos prior to their Basel and Paris triumphs, and will enter Turin in fourth in the ATP Live Doubles Teams Rankings.

Alex de Minaur Outlasts Taylor Fritz at Canadian Open to Reach First-Ever ATP Masters 1000 Quarterfinals

Alex de Minaur is celebrating an impressive comeback.

The 24-year-old Uruguayan & Spanish Australian professional tennis player completed a stunning first-set comeback at the Canadian Open en route to a 7-6(7), 4-6, 6-1 victory against American Taylor Fritz.

Alex de MinaurWith his win, de Minaur has reached the quarterfinals at an ATP Masters 1000 event for the first time in his young career.

de Minaur trailed 1-5 in the first set against Fritz, who squandered two set points on serve. The Australian eventually sealed the opener on his sixth set point and took advantage of some loose hitting from Fritz in the third set to advance after two hours and 28 minutes.

Fritz is ninth in the ATP Live Race To Turin and was hoping to boost his chances of qualifying for the Nitto ATP Finals with a deep run in Toronto. However, he struggled to find consistency against de Minaur, committing 55 unforced errors.

”It feels great to finally break that barrier,” de Minaur said when asked about reaching the last eight at a Masters 1000 event for the first time.

“It’s just a never-say-die attitude. It doesn’t matter what the score is. I’m always going to fight till the end. Being able to compete and stay positive got me into the match. I knew even if I lost that set I’d be in the match and playing a lot better.”

Earlier this year the 24-year-old captured the biggest title of his career at the ATP 500 in Acapulco. He has now won six of his past seven matches, after advancing to the title match in Los Cabos last week (l. to Stefanos Tsitsipas).

He will next fight Daniil Medvedev in the quarterfinals.

Alex de Minaur Earns First Win Over Rafael Nadal in United Cup Play

Alex de Minaur has finally claimed a win against a tennis legend…

For the first time in his career, the 23-year-old Uruguayan & Spanish Australian professional tennis player defeated Rafael Nadal at the United Cup mixed team tournament Monday, as concerns about the world No. 2’s early-season form grew ahead of his Australian Open title defense.

Alex de Minaur, It was de Minaur’s first win against Nadal in four attempts.

Nadal showed glimpses of brilliance during his opening loss to Cameron Norrie following his return to action after an injury-plagued 2022 season, and he looked set to respond against de Minaur, only to fall again as de Minaur won 3-6, 6-1, 7-5.

Nadal, a 22-time Grand Slam champion, has now won only one of his past seven matches on the ATP tour — a dead rubber round-robin stage victory over Casper Ruud at the ATP Finals. His other losses have come against Felix Auger-AliassimeTaylor FritzTommy Paul and Frances Tiafoe.

Nadal will next be in action at the season’s first Grand Slam at Melbourne Park starting January 16, giving him time to iron out flaws.

Spain and Australia not being in contention for the next stage of the inaugural $15 million prize money event had dulled the edge of their meeting slightly, and de Minaur’s quest for his first win over Nadal looked set to continue as he fell behind.

However, he rallied from a set and a break down to secure the biggest victory of his career as Nadal surrendered his serve in the 11th game and de Minaur closed out the victory to spark emotional scenes and delight the raucous Sydney fans.

Carlos Alcaraz Defeats Sebastian Korda to Claim Next Gen ATP Finals Title

Carlos Alcaraz has ended his brilliant season with a bang…

The 18-year-old Spanish tennis player defeated Sebastian Korda of the United States to win the Next Gen ATP Finals on Saturday.

Carlos AlcarazThe top-seeded Alcaraz seemed to take a while to find his proper rhythm and had to save a number of break points in his first two service games. But he found his stride there was no turning back as he saw off Korda 4-3 (5), 4-2, 4-2 in 82 minutes.

Alcaraz had seen two championship points saved by Korda in the fifth game of the third set but that only delayed the inevitable as he won on his third, with a smash at the net.

The victory made Alcaraz the youngest player to earn 32 tour-level wins in a season since Andrei Medvedev went 32-11 in 1992 when he was 18.

Alcaraz has moved more than 100 places up the rankings this season to a career-high No. 32 and reached the U.S. Open quarterfinals.

Both Korda and Alcaraz had won all four of their matches in the tournament for the top 21-and-under players on the ATP Tour. Alcaraz had only dropped one set all week – in the third group game, after he had already secured a semifinal spot.

The ATP Finals will also be in Italy, in Turin next week.

There are different rules at the Next Gen tournament, including on-court coaching, no-Ad scoring, medical timeout limits, and Hawk-Eye making all the line calls.

The most drastic change is the shorter first-to-four set, with a tiebreaker at 3-3.

Carlos Alcaraz Advances to Final at This Year’s Next Gen ATP Finals

Carlos Alcaraz is one win away from proving he’s nex-gen ready…

The 18-year-old Spanish tennis player defeated Argentina’s Sebastian Baez on Friday to reach the final round at the Next Gen ATP Finals.

Carlos Alcaraz Alcaraz dominated from the start in semifinal to win 4-2, 4-1, 4-2 in just 62 minutes.

The only time Alcaraz appeared to struggle was in the penultimate game of the match, when he faced three break points. But he responded with three serves of speeds over 133 mph – including two aces.

He’ll next face American Sebatian Korda, who beat compatriot Brandon Nakashima in five sets on Friday to become the first American to reach the final at the Next Gen ATP Finals.

Both Korda and Alcaraz won all three of their matches in the round-robin group stage.

It is the fourth edition of the tournament in Milan for the top 21-and-under players on the ATP Tour. It was canceled last year because of the coronavirus pandemic. The ATP Finals will also be in Italy, in Turin next week.

There are different rules at the Next Gen tournament, including on-court coaching, no-Ad scoring, medical timeout limits, and Hawk-Eye making all the line calls.

The most drastic change is the shorter first-to-four set, with a tiebreaker at 3-3.