ATP World Tour on Any Sport Any Time

Raonic moves on to fourth round at U.S. Open

Sunday, September 2nd, 2012

Milos Raonic (Wikimedia Commons)

Milos Raonic might have just played his best tennis match of his career in a grand slam event on Saturday.

At Flushing Meadows, New York, Raonic put the beatdown on American James Blake in winning 6-3, 6-0, 7-6.

The tough news though is that his next opponent is Olympic gold medallist Andy Murray of Great Britain, the third seeded player, on Labour Day.

Raonic has beaten Murray once this season though. In the quarterfinals of the Barcelona Open, Raonic defeated Murray 6-4, 7-6.

Murray meanwhile had a much more difficult Saturday than Raonic, defeating Feliciano Lopez of Spain in four tough sets, 7-6, 7-6, 4-6, 7-6.


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Labour Day Weekend Sports Preview–U.S. Open, CFL, MLB

Saturday, September 1st, 2012

On Monday the Edmonton Eskimos will play the Calgary Stampeders at McMahon Stadium in the Labour Day Classic.

Even though the Eskimos are two points ahead of the Stampeders in the CFL Western Division, my gut is telling me the Stampeders will be coming away with the victory. Why am of I of this opinion? Well three reasons.

Home teams have done better this season to date. The teams that have hosted games are 20-13 so far this season.

The Eskimos never do well on the second game of a two game road trip. The second worst game the Eskimos had this season was in Winnipeg after the team won an impressive game in British Columbia. This factor smells trouble.


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Raonic advances to the third round at U.S. Open

Thursday, August 30th, 2012

Milos Raonic (Wikimedia Commons)

The first two rounds were like night and day for Milos Raonic.

After a sloppy first round match against Colombia’s Santiago Giraldo on Tuesday, Raonic played significantly better on Thursday in his second round match against Paul-Henri Mathieu of France.

Raonic had 30 aces in defeating Mathieu in straight sets 7-5, 6-4, 7-6. One serve Raonic had went a remarkable 141 miles per hour. Raonic also had 49 winners in winning 91 points.

One area of concern for Raonic is his return game. He once again failed to put a lot of pressure on his opponent’s serve. For example in the third set, Mathieu only lost one point while he was serving prior to the third set tiebreak. Raonic will have to be better against a red hot James Blake who beat Marcel Granollers of Spain handily 6-1, 6-4, 6-2.


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Canadians move on after first round of U.S. Open

Wednesday, August 29th, 2012

Aleksandra Wozniak (Wikimedia Commons)

Milos Raonic of Thornhill, Ontario and Aleksandra Wozniak of Montreal, Quebec have each moved on to the second round of the 2012 United States Open in Flushing Meadows, New York.

Wozniak’s victory on Monday was easy. She defeated Alexandra Cadantu of Romania in straight sets 6-0, 6-3.

Wozniak won with ten aces, no double faults, but won a remarkable 54% of points while not serving. She also had zero unforced errors in what could be considered one of the best matches Wozniak has ever played at a grand slam tennis tournament.  Wozniak now plays 15th seed Lucie Safarova of the Czech Republic today.

As for Milos Raonic, he won, but it was anything but easy. He defeated Santiago Giraldo of Columbia 6-3, 4-6, 3-6, 6-4, 6-4 in five grueling sets.

Raonic’s effort was given a C- by former American doubles star Luke Jensen. Raonic won despite 15 double faults and 55 unforced errors. Raonic now plays Pierre-Henri Mathieu of France.

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Weekend Sports Preview–August 18-19–CFL, MLB _ ATP

Saturday, August 18th, 2012

The log jammed Western Division in the Canadian Football League continues to get tighter. After Edmonton’s blow out loss to the Montreal Alouettes last night, the Calgary Stampeders can tie the Eskimos with a win against the Toronto Argonauts at 4-3 (Saturday, TSN, 5pm).

The Stampeders  acquired offensive lineman Obby Khan this week. Khan was part of the 2011 Eastern Division champion Winnipeg Blue Bombers before announcing his retirement.

In Toronto meanwhile, the Chad Kackert experiment as the Argonauts’ number one running back begins with Cory Boyd off to Edmonton.

The Argonauts management must know something special from Kackert, who has -3 yards rushing this season.


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Raonic advances to the quarterfinals of Cincinnati

Thursday, August 16th, 2012

Milos Raonic (Chris Johnson, Wikimedia Commons)

Milos Raonic of Thornhill, Ontario put on a serving clinic Thursday in the third round of the Western  and Southern Open in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Raonic delivered 20 aces to beat fifth seeded Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic 6-4, 2-6, 6-2.

Raonic, who is now ranked in the top twenty in the world, will now face Stanislas Wawrinka, the Swiss flag bearer for the opening ceremonies of the 2012 Olympic Games in London, on Friday for the quarterfinals in this elite tennis masters series event.

One could argue that this was Raonic’s second most significant victory in 2012, only second to his impressive victory over Olympic Gold medallist Andy Murray of Great Britain in the quarterfinals of the Barcelona Open.

In the other quarterfinal matches, Roger Federer of Switzerland will take on Mardy Fish of the United States, Juan Martin del Potro of Argentina will take on Jeremy Chardy of France and Novak Djokovic of Serbia will take on Marin Cilic of Croatia.

In other tennis news, Spain’s Rafael Nadal has pulled out of the U.S. Open due to a knee injury.

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Kvitova wins 2012 Rogers Cup

Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

Petra Kvitova (Pavel Lebeda, Wikimedia Commons)

Despite playing very poor tennis for the majority of the second set, Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic defeated China’s Li Na Monday night in Montreal to win the 2012 Rogers Cup 7-5, 2-6, 6-3.

Th first and third sets were highly contested tennis with Kvoitova winning the sets each time. But Na deserves some credit for destroying Kvitova in the second set, winning the first twelve points in the set en route to an easy set win that lasted only 32 minutes.

Kvitova might have won the Rogers Cup, but in how many sports are you allowed to take a break, and then return to win the match. Kvitova and Na each won 192 total points from the match, but Kvitova won because she won her points at the right time.

The problem with tennis is that the sport rewards timing, unlike golf, where if a player is horrible for a  particular time during a round, the result is reflected in the final score much better. Tennis does not award consistency enough by the way its scoring system works.

It was Kvitova’s first win in 2012 and her first victory in North America.


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Djokovic wins 2012 Rogers Cup

Monday, August 13th, 2012

Novak Djokovic (Wikimedia Commons)

For the third time in his career, Novak Djokovic of Serbia, the world ranked number two player in the world, has won the Rogers Cup.

Djokovic defeated Richard Gasquet of France handily last night 6-3, 6-2 at Rexall Centre in Toronto. Gasquet played Djokovic tight in the first set, but got broken in the seventh game, and after that it was quite smooth sailing.

Djokovic previously won the Rogers Cup in 2007 in Montreal when he beat Roger Federer 7-6, 2-6, 7-6, and then won again over American Mardy Fish last year in Montreal 6-2, 3-6, 6-4.

Djokovic also had an advantage because of withdrawals in the tournament to Andy Murray, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer.

On the women’s side, Li Na of China will play Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic for the final in Montreal today. Na won the French Open last year and Kvitova won Wimbledon a year ago. Na defeated another Czech, Lucie Safarova in an epic match yesterday. Down 5-1 in the third set, Na won six consecutive games to come back and win 7-5.

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China dominates in the pool on day one

Saturday, July 28th, 2012

The Chinese have made major strides in the sport of swimming. That wasn’t more evident than on day one of the 2012 Olympic Games in London.

Shiwen Ye, who is only 16 years of age, won the Olympic Gold medal in the women’s 400m individual medley in World Record time of 4:28.43. Meanwhile in the men’s 400m freestyle, Sun Yang won a Gold medal.

China leads the medal standings with six medals overall, one more medal than Italy and the United States.

In Saturday’s other high profile event, Kazakhstan’s Alexandre Vinokourov, at the age of 38, surprised many by winning Olympic Gold in the men’s cycling road race.


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Roger Federer wins seventh Wimbledon

Sunday, July 8th, 2012


Roger Federer (Wikimedia Commons)

Roger Federer still has some tennis left in the tank.

On Sunday, Federer won his seventh Wimbledon of his career and 17th Grand Slam singles title with a four set win over Great Britain’s Andy Murray– 4-6, 7-5, 6-3, 6-4.

But more interestingly, Federer moved back into number one in the world rankings– a little bit surprisingly because both Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal have also played excellent tennis over the last year.

Federer also has tied Pete Sampras for the most weeks ever ranked no.1 at 286, and most Wimbledon titles in history with seven.

Federer might not have played his best tennis at times throughout the week, as he needed five sets to beat Julien Benneteau of France, but I do feel he was the best player in the second week of action. The match was very even until the roof was closed and then Federer took control.

Meanwhile, in boys action, Canada’s Filip Peliwo of Vancouver defeated Luke Saville of Australia 7-5, 6-4.




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Serena Williams wins Wimbledon

Saturday, July 7th, 2012

Serena Williams (Kat Shann, Wikimedia Commons)

For the fifth time in her career, Serena Williams is the Wimbledon champion.

On Saturday, Williams defeated Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland 6-1, 5-7, 6-2.

It is the 14th major title for Williams. She has also won the Australian five times, the U.S. Open three times and the French Open once.

Williams completely dominated the first and third sets. In the first set, Williams had 16 winners to Radwanska’s five, and in the third set, Williams had 20 winners, to Radwanska’s three. Williams also had 17 aces, to Radwanska’s two.

Radwanska had the edge in play shortly after a brief rain delay, but Williams got the momentum back with an important break in the fifth game of the third set.


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Weekend Sports Preview–Wimbledon, Toronto Indy, Equestrian, CFL, U.S. Women’s Open–July 7-8

Friday, July 6th, 2012

The Edmonton Eskimos will look to improve on their 1-0 record when they play the Saskatchewan Roughriders at Mosaic Stadium Sunday at 5pm on TSN.

However, even though both teams got into the win column last week, I was much more impressed with Saskatchewan than Edmonton.

The Roughriders completely dominated the Tiger-Cats in recording a 43-16 victory. The Eskimos have struggled mightily over the last few years in Regina and I expect most the same this weekend.

One thing the Eskimos do have going for them right now is their overall team defense. Edmonton has a chance if they force Darian Durant to be as disorganized as Ricky Ray was last week.

Here are the other events I’ll be watching:

Saturday–Women’s Wimbledon Final–(3) Agnieszka Radwanska–POL vs. (6) Serena Williams–USA–TSN–7am–There is a possibility this tennis match may not even take place at all. Radwanska, according to the Associated Press, has a serious respiratory illness right now and was forced to cancel her press conference today because of her health condition. Williams has the 2-0 advantage head to head, including an easy 6-4, 6-0 win in the quarterfinals of the 2008 Wimbledon. With the win, Radwanska will move into the world’s number one ranking.


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Murray to face Federer in Wimbledon Final

Friday, July 6th, 2012

Andy Murray (May Su, Wikimedia Commons)

We now know who will meet each other in the 2012 Wimbledon Final.

Friday Andy Murray, the fourth seed from Great Britain defeated Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, the fifth seed from France 6-3, 6-4, 3-6, 7-5. Murray becomes the first British men’s tennis player to advance to the Wimbledon men’s final since Bunny Austin in 1938. Fred Perry was the last British male player to win Wimbledon in 1936. Virginia Wade won Wimbledon on the women’s side in 1977.

Austin made headlines in 1938 as he was one of the first tennis players to wear shorts at Wimbledon.

Meanwhile, Roger Federer of Switzerland, seeded third, defeated Novak Djokovic of Serbia, the first seed 6-3, 3-6, 6-4, 6-3.

Federer and Djokovic competed at a very fast pace. It took them less than an hour to compete the first two sets. The tempo seemed to be dictated by Federer throughout the entire match, as Djokovic normally plays very slow, as he bounces the tennis ball numerous times before serving.


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Serena Williams has record performance at Wimbledon

Thursday, July 5th, 2012

Serena Williams (James Boyes, Wikimedia Commons)

We now know who will play in the 2012 Ladies’ Wimbledon Final.

On Thursday, American Serena Williams, the sixth seed, defeated Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka of Belarus 6-3, 7-6 and Poland’s Agnieszka Radwanska defeated eighth seeded German Angelique Kerber 6-3, 6-4.

Williams, who will be participating in her 18th Grand Slam championship with the victory, recorded 24 aces, a Wimbledon record. Williams actually broke her own record of 23 aces which she set in the third round with her win over Jie Zheng of China in three sets.

Today’s serving was even more phenomenal by Williams when you take into account the match was only two sets and she was playing against one of the top tennis players in the world.

Williams also had 23 more aces than Azarenka, who didn’t record her first ace until Williams had 18. Williams’ serve also averaged 107 miles per hour. To put this into perspective David Ferrer’s serve yesterday in his quarterfinal loss to Andy Murray averaged 109 miles per hour.


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