Archive for the 'Ivan Ljubicic' Category

16
Apr
12

Ivan Ljubicic fell into his chair in tears while the sparse crowd gave him a standing ‘Goodbye’ ovation.

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Ivan Ljubicic bowed out of professional tennis tamely on Sunday with a straight-sets defeat in the first round of the Monte Carlo Masters. The former world number three managed to win just three games during the clash against fellow Croatian Ivan Dodig, losing 6-0 6-3 in an hour and 11 minutes to the 59th-ranked player. Afterwards, in a post-match ceremony on court, he was given a special award by ATP boss Brad Drewett and tournament director Zeljko Franulovic. And the 33-year-old was clearly overcome with emotion as some of his career highlights, including victory at Indian Wells in 2010 and a tribute from Roger Federer, were broadcast on the court’s giant screen.

“I felt like it could end up emotional but I didn’t expect it this big, this emotional,” said Ljubicic. “Obviously, it’s the end of something beautiful for me. “It was a tough day for me both on the court and off the court. I knew my mind was everywhere else but on the tennis court.” Famous for his bald head and his ability to play on all surfaces, Ljubicic, whose best year came in 2005 when he reached two Masters Series finals and won the Davis Cup, had announced he would play his last event at home in Monte Carlo. “For me, it’s a special place,” he added. “In 1999, big tennis started here for me, qualifying, beating Andrei Medvedev and Yevgeny Kafelnikov. “In a way, to wrap it up and finish off here… I think it was the right place to do that.”

Dodig said he had taken little pleasure in beating a player he had considered a mentor in the final match of his 15-year career. “I think this is the first time that I’m not happy to win the match,” he said “All players like me, like Mario Ancic, we learnt from him.”

 

 

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02
Feb
12

Lopez & Davydenko lose in Montpellier while Ljubicic is ousted in Zageb.

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Fourth seed Richard Gasquet booked his place in the quarter-finals of the Sud de France Open in Montpellier with a 6-3 6-4 win over Russian wild card Nikolay Davydenko. Gasquet needed one hour and 26 minutes to complete his win and reach the last eight where he will meet Germany’s Philipp Kohlschreiber, who beat Edouard Roger-Vasselin 6-4 7-5. There was further French success with second seed Gilles Simon overcoming Italy’s Flavio Cipolla 6-3 6-2, while wild card Guillaume Rufin was a surprise 7-6 (7-5) 6-3 winner over fifth seed Feliciano Lopez.

Top seed and home favourite Ivan Ljubicic crashed out of the Zagreb Indoors in Croatia after falling 6-4 6-4 in his second round match against Germany’s world number 105 Michael Berrer. Austrian qualifier Jurgen Melzer will play Berrer in the quarter-finals after defeating Italian fifth seed Andreas Seppi 6-2 6-3. Melzer, who needed just over an hour to progress, saved all but one of six break points against him.

Seventh seed Robin Haase beat Matthias Bachinger 7-6 (7/4) 3-6 6-3 while in first round action there were wins for Dudi Sela, Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, Grega Zemlja and fourth seed Ivan Dodig.

25
Sep
11

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga overcame Ivan Ljubicic 6-3 6-7 (4/7) 6-3 to claim the Moselle Open title in Metz.

Jo Wilfried Tsonga from France holds his trophy after defeating Ivan Ljubicic from Croatia in the final of the ATP "Open de Moselle" tennis tournament in Metz, eastern France, Sunday, Sept. 25, 2011. (AP Photo/Mathieu Cugnot)

World number 10 Tsonga, playing in his homeland, has returned to form this year after overcoming injury problems and this was his first ATP title since winning in Tokyo nearly two years ago. Croatian Ljubicic, ranked 29 in the world, had enjoyed a 3-2 advantage over Tsonga in their previous five career meetings ahead of the final. Tsonga’s victory improved his chances of qualifying for the Barclays ATP World Tour finals in London in November. He is currently lying seventh in the singles rankings with four qualification spots available. Tsonga hit seven aces and broke Ljubicic’s serve in the first and seventh games in a 38-minute first set. He could have opened up a 5-1 lead in the second set but Ljubicic staged a revival and from 4-2 down Ljubicic won three of the next four games as the set headed for a tie-break. Tsonga took a 4-2 lead in the tie-break but Ljubicic won five straight points to take the set and the level the match. Tsonga regained his composure to break Ljubicic’s serve in the third and ninth games of the deciding set to take the title.

 

24
Sep
11

Ljubicic will face Tsonga in the final of the Moselle Open.

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Ivan Ljubicic blasted down 26 aces on his way to a 7-6 7-6 victory over Gilles Muller of Luxembourg in the semi-finals of the Moselle Open in Metz, France. World number 29 Muller set the tone by sending down four aces in the opening game, but Ljubicic quickly overhauled him and the 32-year-old veteran rallied from 3-2 down in the tiebreaker to win the next five points and take the first set 7-3. It was a similar story in the second set as the service dominated Muller finished the match with 18 aces, but he could not handle Ljubicic’s delivery. The end came when Muller sent a backhand volley wide to give Ljubicic a match point at 5-5 in the second breaker, which the fourth seed converted with yet another ace. Ljubicic will face Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in Sunday’s final after the top seed beat Ukrainian third seed Alexandr Dolgopolov 6-4 6-4 in the second semi-final. World number 10 Tsonga has returned to form this year after battles against injury but remains without an ATP title since winning in Tokyo nearly two years ago, and will be hopeful of breaking that sequence on Sunday after coming through his last-four clash in one hour and 17 minutes. The Frenchman managed two breaks to Dolgopolov’s one to take the opening set, while a lone break in the second was sufficient to wrap up the victory with Tsonga’s own service game looking rock solid. Tsonga’s hopes of landing his first ATP crown since October 2009 will be firmly tested on Sunday, with Ljubicic enjoying a 3-2 advantage in five career meetings. World number 29 Ljubicic will be bidding for his 11th career title but his first of the year.

 

 

12
Feb
11

Tsonga makes his first final in two years.

World number 18 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga reached his first ATP final since October 2009 by beating Ivan Ljubicic in Rotterdam. The Frenchman won 6-4 7-6 (8/6) in the semi-finals of the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament. Tsonga broke seventh seed Ljubicic’s serve in the fifth game and went on to take the opening set, but his opponent then began to fight back. Ljubicic moved 5-2 ahead in the second set, but the Croatian was broken as he served to level the match at 5-3. And Tsonga went on to clinch victory in the tie-break after a match lasting one hour and 36 minutes.

Eighth seed Tsonga will be attempting to claim his sixth ATP tour title.

11
Feb
11

Ljubicic defeats Baghdatis for a berth in the semis with Tsonga.

Ivan Ljubicic inched towards a third final appearance at the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament after edging Cypriot Marcos Baghdatis 6-4, 6-7(6), 7-6(4) Friday in the quarter-finals of the ATP World Tour 500 indoor hard-court tennis tournament in Rotterdam. The Croatian, who finished runner-up in 2005 (l. to Federer) and 2007 (l. to Youzhny), was pushed the distance by the unseeded Baghdatis, against whom he went into the match with a 1-4 record. Ljubicic looked set to wrap up a straight-sets win as he held match point at 6-5 in the second set tie-break. He failed to convert, though, and Baghdatis seized the initiative to level the match. Again Ljubicic ascended to a winning position in the third set as he broke for a 4-3 lead. Again, though, Baghdatis pegged back the big-serving Croatian as he levelled at 4-4 and forced another tie-break. However, where he had been passive in the second set tie-break, Ljubicic approached the decider with aggression and was rewarded as he clinched victory in two hours and 24 minutes. Ljubicic was especially potent on serve in the encounter, firing 18 aces and winning 85 per cent of points behind his first serve.

The 31-year-old Ljubicic will bid to reach his 24th ATP World Tour final when he faces eighth seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the semi-finals. The Frenchman advanced at the expense of fourth seed Tomas Berdych, who was forced to withdraw suffering from flu.

18
Nov
10

Ljubicic will partner Lendl at Aussie World Team Challenge.

Ivan Ljubicic will partner former tennis great Ivan Lendl for the International Team at the World Tennis Challenge, 11–13 January 2011. WTC Co-Tournament Director Mark Woodforde believes Ljubicic and Lendl will form a formidable team at Australia’s most innovative event. “Lendl is here to win and he is really excited that Ivan has agreed to partner him on the International team,” Woodforde said.

“With only one player left to announce, we could not be more happy with the calibre of players we have on board so far this year – it’s going to make for an amazing event comprising great on-court entertainment and, of course, some incredible and history making tennis. “The pairing of Ivan and Ivan will surely make the International team the one to beat for this year’s World Tennis Challenge title. “The former No.3 is currently ranked No.17 on the ATP World Tour and the Croatian has finished in the top 50 for the past 10 years. Ljubicic is a winner of nine career ATP titles and has amassed more than $9 million in career prize money. He has also led Croatia in Davis Cup for more than a decade and holds a 36-18 Davis Cup win-loss record.

Lendl and Ljubicic will be tough competition for crowd favourites John McEnroe and James Blake who make up Team America. Sell-out crowds are expected in 2011 with Lendl to face former rival John McEnroe. Both share a record of 12 year-end world championships, and the rivalry still remains fierce between the two players. With Henri Leconte and Michael Llodra confirmed for Team Europe and crowd favourite Pat Cash forming half of Team Australia, there is just one player still to be announced – a current day Australian player who will partner Cash.

31
Oct
10

Monfils wins his third ATP title at home.

Gael Monfils dethroned defending champion Ivan Ljubicic to lift the Open Sud de France trophy. Monfils, seeded third for the event, fired down 11 aces and made the most of Ljubicic’s 39 unforced errors to claim a 6-2 5-7 6-1 victory in his homeland. The win is the charismatic Frenchman’s third career title and his first since winning in Metz in 2009. The fourth-seeded Ljubicic, who triumphed last year when the tournament was held in Lyon, struggled with his first serve and was broken five times during the match.

Monfils made a nervous start and had to save an early break point with a forehand passing shot after double-faulting twice. The Frenchman then broke Ljubicic in the fourth game with two consecutive winners down the line and closed out the set with his second break. Monfils looked poised for a routine win when he broke again for a 3-1 lead in the second set, but two return winners from Ljubicic in the next game saw him break back immediately. Another break gave Ljubicic a 6-5 lead and the veteran Croat took the match into a deciding set with an ace. Monfils recovered quickly, though, and fired a classy backhand down the line to break for a 2-0 lead at the start of the third. Ljubicic was broken again in the fourth game and Monfils closed out the match with an ace on his first match point.

“I played well today and I managed to stay in the match after losing my temper during the second set,” Monfils said. “Hopefully this will be the beginning of something, I have to realize that I’m able to play good tennis. But I don’t want to be carried away with this victory because the coming weeks will be very hard mentally.”

30
Oct
10

Monfils will take on Ljubicic in Montpellier final.

Gael Monfils overcame the challenge of French compatriot Jo-Wilfried Tsonga to claim his place in the final of the Open Sud de France.

Third seed Monfils edged the opening set on a tie-break, but Tsonga came back strongly in the second to level matters.

That took the match into a closely-fought decider, but Monfils claimed the crucial break to seal a 7-6 (7/2) 2-6 6-4 victory over the second seed.

Monfils will now face Ivan Ljubicic in Sunday’s final in Montpellier.

The fourth-seeded Croatian was also made to work in his semi-final by Spain’s Albert Montanes, eventually beating the sixth seed 6-3 7-6 (7/4).

13
Oct
10

Djokovic advances in Shanghai but Roddick retires with a groin injury.

Novak Djokovic advanced to the third round of the Shanghai Masters with a 6-3 6-3 win over Croatia’s Ivan Ljubicic. The second seeded Serb, who defended the China Open in Beijing on Monday, wrapped up his victory in 80 minutes. Sweden’s Robin Soderling progressed in straight sets as he overcame the serve of Janko Tipsarevic 6-3 7-6 (7-5).

Tenth seed Andy Roddick retired hurt when leading 6-3 2-3 against Guillermo Garcia-Lopez of Spain. The American suffered a groin strain and was unable to continue. Serbia’s Marin Cilic was another seed to fall as the tournament’s number 14 went down 6-2 6-2 to Andreas Seppi of Italy.

Ljubicic, who upset Britain’s Andy Murray on his way to the semi-finals in Beijing last week, proved far less of an obstacle to Djokovic who always had control of the contest. Djokovic has taken a narrow 410-point lead over Roger Federer in the world rankings with the Swiss yet to play since losing to the 23-year-old in the US Open semi-finals. The winner in Shanghai will earn 1,000 ranking points, although Federer missed the event last year while Djokovic reached the semi-finals. Djokovic is confident that a busy playing schedule will not catch up with him as the season nears an end. “I’m playing well, moving well, motivated mentally and full of energy. I’m hoping that it’s going to stay that way,” said Djokovic. “I didn’t spend that much energy in Beijing. I won without dropping a set in the whole tournament.”

In other matches Richard Gasquet of France overcame Latvia’s Ernests Gulbis 6-1 6-4, while Austrian 13th seed Jurgen Melzer beat Spain’s Daniel Gimeno-Taylor 6-3 7-6 (7-2).




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