Archive for the 'Alexander Dolgopolov' Category


Fernando Verdasco inflicted Rafael Nadal’s first defeat of the clay-court season to dump the world number two out of the Madrid Masters.

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Verdasco, the 15th seed, had lost all of his previous 14 meetings with his Spanish compatriot. But the 28-year-old upset his Davis Cup team-mate 6-3 3-6 7-5 to book a quarter-final against Tomas Berdych. The Czech sixth seed eased through earlier on Thursday, winning 6-1 6-1 against Gael Monfils, seeded 12th. Nadal had previously won twice in Madrid and the six-time French Open champion was in good form having won a record eighth Monte Carlo title and a seventh Barcelona crown last month. The 25-year-old star took the third-round match to a deciding set but Verdasco, playing in his home city, prevailed to disrupt Nadal’s preparations for this year’s French Open, which begins later this month. Berdych had earlier ended Monfils’ comeback from injury. The Frenchman was playing for the first time since picking up an abdominal muscle problem in March and failed to earn a break point.

There was another surprise in the men’s draw as Ukraine’s Alexandr Dolgopolov knocked out fourth seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France. Dolgopolov, seeded 16th, won 7-5 3-6 7-6 (7-2) to book a last-eight match with Argentina’s Juan Martin del Potro, the 10th seed disposing of Croatian Marin Cilic 6-2 6-4.


Bernard Tomic has scored one of the biggest Grand Slam wins of his career with a five-set win over Alexandr Dolgopolov. Next up, Roger Federer!

The 19-year-old overturned a lopsided win-loss record against the Ukrainian with the 4-6, 7-6(0), 7-6(6), 2-6, 6-3 victory, setting up a blockbuster fourth-round showdown with four-time Australian Open champion Roger Federer in what will be the Swiss maestro’s 1,000th career match. Tomic began brightly on a packed Rod Laver Arena, gaining a break and skipping out to a 4-2 lead. From that point Dolgopolov flicked a switch, ramping up his level to reel off four straight games and take the set. When Tomic went down a break early in the second set, he looked to be in dire straits. But foreshadowing the topsy-turvy nature of this contest, the young Aussie broke back and eventually found himself with a set point in the 12th game leading 30-40. Although he was unable to convert, when the set eventually progressed to a tiebreak, it was one-way traffic. Buoyed by his vocal home crowd, Tomic romped through the breaker without dropping a point to square the match at a set apiece. The Ukrainian responded strongly, establishing a 3-0 in a perfect start to the third set. It progressed on serve to another tiebreaker, which this time around was a much closer affair. Tomic gained an early mini-break, only to double-fault it away. Tomic reached a set point which Dolgopolov erased with an ace, but the Ukrainian then committed two consecutive groundstroke errors – one each on forehand and backhand – to hand the 19-year-old a two-sets-to-one lead.

But as the story of the night went, this was far from over. Shrugging off the disappointment of his collapse at the end of the third set, Dolgopolov broke serve to lead 3-2 in the fourth, only to then call for the trainer and receive treatment on his lower back and right buttock. Whatever the trainer did, it worked. Dolgopolov appeared to move freely and held to love to consolidate the break, and despite receiving more treatment at the next change of ends, wrapped up the set without the loss of another game.

And so to the fifth. It was Dolgopolov’s third straight match to go the distance at Australian Open 2012, and the second time Tomic had been stretched to five this week. If they were fatigued, they did a great job of masking it. The crowd’s involvement seemed to err the visitor on, and facing a 0-1, 0-30 deficit, he responded with a flurry of winners to level scores. Yet it was Tomic who struck the first blow of the set, coming out on top of an intriguing cat-and-mouse point by smashing a winner before going on to break serve. Casually rolling an off-forehand into the open court just minutes later, the local had quickly built a 4-1 lead. Dolgopolov kept himself alive with an immediate service hold, but when Tomic smacked a running forehand winner midway through the seventh game before holding for a 5-2 lead, it appeared he’d dealt the Ukrainian a crushing psychological blow.

Yet faced with the biggest win of his short Grand Slam career, Tomic did not flinch. He put away a tricky inside-out forehand and then reached match point when Dolgopolov erred on his own forehand. After missing his first opportunity, he sealed a famous victory when the Ukrainian floated a backhand long.



“It was a good match and I played solid … but Andy played much better than me and that’s why he is where he is.

With Ivan Lendl in his corner for the first time, Andy Murray ruthlessly ended Tomic’s career-best charge at the Brisbane International 6-3 6-2 in 70 minutes. The Gold Coast teenager started brightly on Pat Rafter Arena as he looked all the measure of the most dangerous young challenger on the tour – producing drop shots, lobs and trips to the net that all struck gold. He didn’t lose a point on serve as the score ticked over to 3-all. But as impressive as his first 18 minutes were, the next 18 were in stark contrast as Murray lifted a gear, took complete control and booked a place in Sunday’s final against Ukraine’s Alexandr Dolgopolov. “I thought it was going to be a piece of cake – I thought it was going to be easy,” Tomic laughed sheepishly. “It turned around.

“If you look at it he beat Roger (Federer) in the Masters series final 6-3 6-3 so you can’t be harsh on yourself, he just played really good.” Despite the loss, Tomic’s world ranking will rise from 42 to a career-high 37 before he plays at the Kooyong Classic this week. On the basis of their first meeting, Murray tipped the numbers will just keep getting lower for the Wimbledon quarter-finalist. He’s going to be good, there’s no question, you just never know how good,” he said. “It depends on the body, it depends how hard you work and also a little bit of luck. “He’s got a big frame and he’s a big guy and so once he fills out and gets stronger he’s going to be even tougher so he’s got a good future for sure.”

Last year’s Australian Open finalist had new coach Lendl in his box for the first time and now looks over the niggles that plagued him at the start of the week to be in top shape for his tilt at the Australian Open. Tomic wasn’t helped by a minor toe injury, but world No.15 Dolgopolov had to overcome a bigger injury concern as he dug deep to defeat French second seed Gilles Simon 6-3 6-4. The 23-year-old, coached by South Australian resident Jack Reader, feared the worst when he tweaked his groin at the start of the second set and was set to retire. But an out-of-form Simon let the 23-year-old off the hook by not making him work harder for each point and the pain subsided. “The first game it was hurting so hard after I pulled it that I thought I would finish in a few games,” admitted Dolgopolov, who declared himself fit for the final.



Dolgopolov ousts Baghdatis to reach the Moselle Open quarters.


Third seed Alexandr Dolgopolov came through a two-hour and 20-minute marathon against Cypriot Marcos Baghdatis to book his place in the quarter-finals of the Moselle Open in Metz. The Ukrainian battled back from a set down to triumph 6-7 (5/7) 7-5 6-3 and reach the last eight, where he will face either Xavier Malisse or Igor Kunitsyn, who won his first-round match against Frenchman Kenny De Schepper on Wednesday.

Fourth seed Ivan Ljubicic also reached the last eight with a 7-5 7-5 win over French wild card Nicolas Renavand, and eighth seed Gilles Muller joined him after a 7-6 (7/5) 6-4 success against Benoit Paire. In remaining first-round action, veteran wild-card Arnaud Clement sprang a surprise with a 6-3 6-4 win over fifth seed Michael Llodra, and seventh seed Philipp Kohlschreiber beat Jonathan Dasnieres De Veig 6-4 7-6 (7/4).


Djokovic wins his 63rd match after he figured out the unusual game of Dolgopolov.

Novak Djokovic

Djokovic recovered from 4-0 down in the opening tie-break Novak Djokovic came through a stunning first set tie-break to beat Ukrainian Alexandr Dolgopolov and secure a place in the US Open quarter-finals. Djokovic saved four set points in the tie-break and needed six of his own on his way to a 7-6 (16-14) 6-4 6-2 win. The Serbian world number one will next face comaptriot Janko Tipsarevic, who beat Spain’s Juan Carlos Ferrero 7-5 6-7 (3-7) 6-5 6-2.

Djokovic racked up his 61st win in 63 matches this year but it was not without alarms for the top seed, as Dolgopolov’s unorthodox game caused him problems. On a windy afternoon on Louis Armstrong Stadium, the 22nd seed kept Djokovic pinned back with his sliced backhand and, after the pair swapped breaks of serve, the first set went to a tie-break. Dolgopolov was in total control at 4-0 up but then got unlucky with a net cord, and Djokovic came racing back. Each man would have their opportunities as the crowd reached fever pitch, with Dolgopolov playing one incredible point to see off a set point by picking up a drop shot that seemed impossible, but in the end Djokovic converted his sixth break point and never looked back. He broke at the start of the second and third sets to see out a straight-sets win that had been anything but straightforward for the first 75 minutes.




Marin Cilic ensured home interest in the Croatia Open final for the first time in 21 years.


Marin Cilic ensured home interest in the Croatia Open final for the first time in 21 years with a comfortable win over Fabio Fognini. The fourth seed dropped his serve only once en route to a 6-2 6-2 semi-final win, to become the first Croat in the final since Goran Prpic defeated compatriot Goran Ivanisevic in 1990. The Italian, who was bidding for a first ATP Tour final having now lost all six of his semi-appearances, briefly threatened to spoil the party when he broke early in the second set. But Cilic rattled off six straight games to set up a Sunday showdown with Ukrainian Aleksandr Dolgopolov.

“It was not as easy as it looks,” Cilic said. “I had to play really hard to win. My serve went up and down, especially in the second set. But I am really happy how I played.” Second seed Dolgopolov beat Spaniard Juan Carlos Ferrero 6-4 6-4 in the other semi-final.


“I wasn’t planning playing doubles here, and here we are, winning the tournament. So it’s pretty amazing.”

The first-time pairing of Alexandr Dolgopolov and Xavier Malisse completed their giant-killing run at the BNP Paribas Open, defeating Olympic gold medalists Roger Federer and Stanislas Wawrinka 6-4, 6-7(5) 10-7 in the doubles final at the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament. Dolgopolov said about their unlikely road to the title, “We just said hi before this tournament, and we weren’t like really close. He just asked me, ‘Do you want to play?’ like 15 minutes to the deadline of the doubles because I wasn’t planning playing doubles here and here we are, winning the tournament. So it’s pretty amazing.”

Over the tournament fortnight, the Ukrainian-Belgian pairing ousted top seeds Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan, US Open doubles finalists Rohan Bopanna and Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi, and three Top 10 singles players in Federer, Andy Murray (w/J. Murray) and Tomas Berdych (w/Tipsarevic). Their five wins all came in a Match Tie-break. “For sure we were doing that the whole tournament, so I wasn’t really nervous in the final,” Dolgopolov said of playing the Match Tie-break. “We had a lot of luck throughout the tournament. You don’t want to lose it because you’re nervous or something. You get lucky, you win; if not, you lose. We just went for it and got a bit of luck as well in the final.”

It was the first title for the 22-year-old Dolgopolov and the fifth doubles title for the 30-year-old Malisse, whose biggest win came seven years ago at Roland Garros with Olivier Rochus. “I think we just go out there and have fun,” said Malisse of their success. “That’s the main reason. That’s what we said in the beginning. And we return really well, so we make the other guys play all the time. At the net we can manage, and I think we serve well. Those are the things that you need in doubles, I guess. Especially the return, which is every time second serve we make them play and it makes a big difference.”



Nicolas Almagro repeats as Brasil Open winner.

Nicolas Almagro landed his second Brazil Open title with a win over Alexandr Dolgopolov. The world number 13, who won at Costa do Sauipe in 2008, only needed two sets to get the better of the number four seed.

The Spaniard ran out a 6-3 7-6 (7/3) winner in one hour and 28 minutes, despite taking just one of the five break points that came his way and serving two aces less than his opponent. Almagro said: “The truth is that it was a beautiful final, a final that I was very happy to be part of. “It’s clear that the tournament is a very important one not only for me but here in all of Brazil and I’ve been lucky enough to win it twice and I will continue to try my best in the future here.”

The beaten Dolgopolov added: “I think I played well during the whole tournament. “Of course, the final didn’t go my way but Nicolas played a very good match.”


“It was very tough,” Murray said after his win, “Every point against him is different.”

Andy Murray moved into the semi-finals of the Australian Open by beating Alexandr Dolgopolov in four sets – and he won’t have to play Rafael Nadal in the last four. The British number one looked a touch vulnerable when he dropped his first set of the tournament but found another gear when it mattered to come through 7-5 6-3 6-7 (3/7) 6-3 in three hours and six minutes. He had been expected to meet Nadal in the semi-finals, but the world number one was clearly injured as he slumped to a straight-sets defeat to fellow Spaniard David Ferrer. However, Murray is still likely to have to up his level considerably if he is to prevail against Ferrer after a display against Dolgopolov which was inconsistent at best.

“It was very tough,” Murray said afterwards. “Every point against him is different, he hits the ball differently to everyone else, it’s tough to explain. “I struggled with my rhythm early on and he came back in the third set but I thought I did well enough.”

Dolgopolov, the world number 46 who beat seeds Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Robin Soderling in his previous two matches, had numerous opportunities to take a grip on the match but too often let Murray off the hook with moments of carelessness, a trait he will have to eradicate is he is to make the most of his undoubted potential.


“I am hitting the ball well right now and have played four good matches so far.” claims Andy Murray.

Andy Murray coasted into the quarter-finals of the Australian Open with a straight-sets defeat of 11th seed Jurgen Melzer. Melzer was expected to provide Murray with his first serious test of the tournament, but proved no match for the Scot, who has yet to drop a set in Melbourne as he bids to land his first grand slam title. Murray produced a mature, controlled performance to win 6-3 6-1 6-1 in one hour and 44 minutes, contrasting sharply with that offered by Melzer, the Austrian spraying the ball all over Rod Laver Arena as his all-or-nothing game was woefully exposed. Murray, the world number five, will meet Alexandr Dolgopolov in the last eight after the Ukrainian stunned fourth seed Robin Soderling in a five-set thriller. And the 23-year-old admitted he was surprised by the ease of his win. “Yeah, he had a good year on tour last year, I was surprised but I played a great match,” Murray said. However, Murray accepts it is likely to get tougher against emerging star Dolgopolov.

“I have known him quite a while and played him when we were young in Davis Cup. He is unorthodox but is a tough player,” added Murray, who was watched by mum Judy after she missed the clash with Guillermo Garcia-Lopez on Saturday.

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