Top 5 Moments in Tennis This Week 4-30

Of the many tournaments this week, Stuttgart definitely had the spotlight and if you had the little known provider, beING, you got to see the return of Maria Sharapova. And of course, Tennis Channel had Nadal…

  • Porsche Tennis Grand Prix (Stuttgart/Clay/Premier) [Draw]
  • TEB BNP Paribas Istanbul Cup (Istanbul/Clay/International)  Draw
  • Barcelona Open Banco Sabadell (Spain/Clay/500) [Draw]
  • Gazprom Hungarian Open (Budapest/Clay/250) [Draw]

Top Moments This Week:

5a. When Sinclair Broadcast Group, announced its acquisition and alignment of tennis assets, expectations were low. Less than two months in, the benefits are clear., Tennis magazine, and Sinclair’s Tennis Channel, seemingly have a clear mission statement: promoting the sport of tennis.

Tennis Channel. TENNIS Magazine. Tennis Industry. These broadcast, print and digital voices of the game converged under one umbrella. They joined forces in order to tell more compelling stories, better inform you about what’s important in the sport, and report on the players and places that matter—including those players and places that don’t have a voice.  –Ed McGrogan

Unstoppable by Maria Sharapova
5b. Tennis Channel’s website has really improved with timely and concise pieces. Their A Complete Snapshot of Maria’s Time Away From Tennis is millennial friendly with tweets and pics galore. Just short of a Sharapova marketing or promotion piece, it lists the ten things she has done during her fifteen month doping ban: travel, exhibition matches, new Sugarpova Chocolate line, Harvard program, Oscar attendance, photoshoots, Sunblock promotion, memoir Unstoppable  and comeback training.  Food for thought: Shouldn’t a doping ban include tour sponsored exhibitions?
4. Without beING, watching Stuttgart has been quite the feat! Who wants to subscribe to an errant provider that won’t provide full coverage of WTA matches? And it doesn’t have OnDemand… Tennis Channel wanted desperately to show the Sharapova/Vinci match, but the WTA stood firm. TC had no subscription rights; maybe this will force all parties to return to the table…
3. Who likes the updated WTA website? Its home page is obviously targeting a new tennis audience. It highlights scores, latest news, latest videos, top rankings, featured story and even a section in Spanish. Who knew this was a core audience? The site is a bit clunky. It could use a better design for its sections and would benefit from better use of color. The site is also a bit busy and the lost of the drop the menu doesn’t help. The obtrusive placement of the scores could have been placed on the left or right screen.
2a. Everyone will have to wait a little longer for the fireworks we are all expecting  when Sharpova plays her detractors, Radwanska, Bouchard, Wozniacki, et all. This week she impressed all in her first match back from her fifteen month doping ban. She defeated Vinci 7-5, 6-3 with an aggressive and focused game.  This was an expected win. She had a 2-0 H2H against Vinci and Vinci really does not have the weapons to disrupt her game even on clay. With a guaranteed late start and a favorable  draw Vinci>Makarova>Kontaveit> Mladenovic, she fell to Mladenovic in three sets 6-3, 5-7, 4-6. She failed to take advantage of opportunities in the second and third set; likely suffering from a bit of tiredness, she just ran out of gas.  Her movement, ball striking, lower ball toss and more fluid serve motion will do some damage on the tour… The next tournament for Sharapova is Madrid, another wild card entry.
2b. The WTA is still hung over from the news of Serena’s pregnancy. What else could explain their inability to step-up their game to fill the undeniable vacuum she has left? Think Halep, Muguruza, Kutnetsova…
1. Nadal is looking to rack-up the titles this clay season to make him the undisputed King of Clay. Taking advantage of Federer’s absence, he is well on his way to putting his name in the record books as the holder of ten titles in Monte Carloten titles in Barcelona and maybe ten French Opens?
Rafael Nadal, has won an all-time record nine French Open titles. Nadal won four consecutive titles from 2005 – 2008 and an open era record of five consecutive titles from 2010 – 2014. Wikipedia

Check Out:

Projected Winners This Week:

  • Stuttgart – final Mladenovic vs, Siegemund; Mladenovic in three sets.
  • Istanbul – final Svitolina vs. Bertens; Svitolina in two competitive sets.
  • Barcelona- final Nadal vs. Thiem; Nadal in two sets, one with a tiebreak.
  • Hungary Open- final Pouille vs. Beden; Pouille in two sets, one a breadstick.

Winners This Week:

  • Stuttgart- Siegemund wins her second title, defeating Mladenovic  1-6, 6-2, 6-7. The German wildcard had a long week with big wins (Zhang, Kutnetsova, Pliskova, Halep, Mladenovic)  to drive away with the Porsche.  This is how much home pride can help your game; this year she was 5-9 wins before this tournament. She now has two titles Bastad 2016 and this one; she did reach the final last year as well.
  • Istanbul- Svitolina defeated Bertens 6-2, 6-4.
  • Barcelona- Nadal defeated Thiem 6-4, 6-1.
  • Hungary- Pouille defeated Beden 6-3, 6-1.

Next Week 5/1:

Most players will be resting next week preparing for Madrid in two weeks.

  • GP SAR La Princesse Lalla Meryem (Morocco/Clay/International)
  • J&T Banka Prague Open (Prague/Clay/ International)
  • BMW Open by FWU (Munich/Clay/250)
  • Millennium Estoril Open (Portugal/Clay/250)
  • TEB BNP Paribas Istanbul Open (Turkey/Clay/250)

What were your top tennis moments this week?

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