Archive for the 'Mats Wilander' Category

10
Sep
10

A terrible scheduling error keeps exhibition doubles match a secret.

Age and brawn won out over youth and beauty in an exhibition set of doubles tennis that followed Rafael Nadal’s quarterfinal victory over Fernando Verdasco on Thursday night. The one-set, no-ad contest was supposed to precede Nadal, but a five-set day match tightened up the schedule and the quartet of Grand Slam champions was pushed back to be the nightcap. At the end of 40 minutes of sometimes tennis, sometimes theatre, Pat Cash and Mats Wilander prevailed 7-5 over Martina Hingis and Anna Kournikova.

Hingis and Kournikova were back together eight years after winning their second Australian Open doubles title together. They had won in 1999 before taking the crown again in 2002. Hingis also won the singles title in Flushing in 1997 plus four other Grand Slam singles titles and was once the No. 1 ranked woman in the world.

Most of the 23,000 plus in attendance were long gone by the time the elder statesmen hit the court, but those who stayed were allowed access to the best seats in the house and made plenty of noise as the former stars entertained.

06
Nov
09

Simon and Wilander complete 2010 WTC field.

_gilessimonA current champion and former No.1 round out an exciting line-up for the World Tennis Challenge 2010.

Gilles Simon and Mats Wilander have been announced as the final two players to complete the field for World Tennis Challenge 2010.

Simon, currently No.12 on the ATP World Rankings, will represent the Europe team with French compatriot Henri Leconte. Simon started 2009 ranked sixth in the world and has maintained a top 10 position for the majority of the year, only recently falling to 12. He is currently the second-ranked Frenchman behind Australian Open Finalist Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.

Rounding out the field and partnering Radek Stepanek in the Internationals Team is 2009 World Tennis Challenge tennis legend and crowd favourite Mats Wilander.

“Simon has had an incredible last 18 months including a long time now in the top 10. We have a quality field coming to Adelaide and a good mix of entertainment and top level tennis.”

 The complete field for the 2010 event is:

Australasia Pat Cash Bernard Tomic

Europe Henri Leconte Gilles Simon

International Mats Wilander Radek Stepanek

The Americas John McEnroe Robby Ginepri

09
Dec
08

Aussie Legends to return for the 2009 Open.

wilanderpat-cash-1pat-cashThe second week of the 2009 Australian Open in Melbourne will feature a return match between Mats Wilander and Pat Cash. A re-enactment of the 1988 final when Wilander prevailed after an epic 5 set match to defeat Pat Cash and to thwart Cash’s chances of winning the coveted title in front of his home-town fans. As Cash said jokingly, “I hate him more now than ever, I just wait to get even with him,” to which Mats replied, “It was one of my greatest moments in tennis, and I can’t wait to feel that excitement again.”
Joining Pat and Mats is an array of Australian old timers plus a few hangers on who pop up to play whenever they smell a tennis ball. The ‘Woodies’ Todd Woodbridge and Mark Woodforde, who together formed one of the most formidable doubles teams to ever play the game will be on hand, Todd is the organizer of the Legends event. Also competing on the True Blue courts of Melbourne park, and included in the $29 grounds pass will be Wayne Arthurs, Wally Masur, John Fitzgerald, Peter McNamara, Paul McNamee, Mansour Bahrami, Wayne Ferriera and Joachim Nystrom.
The Australian Open director is set upon making the 2009 event a festival of tennis and an entertaining two weeks for both tennis fans and all visitors. A series of concerts is planned, one featuring the spectacular Spiegelworld performance. The who’s who of Australian music will be providing nightly entertainment, and could easily outdraw some of the mediocre tennis matches served up by the lesser known players.
A new store has opened that will sell an array of merchandise featuring the 2009 Aussie Open logo. T- shirts and tennis shirts are available plus some other rather peculiar items, an Aussie Open oven mitt for $15, or an Aussie Open paper fan for $10. I can’t wait to get mine!
The tournament director is hyping a replay of the Federer Nadal Wimbledon final, and it is a reasonable prediction that the world’s number 1 and 2 players could meet in the final, but there are many young eager players to beat just to make it through to the final pair. A lucky draw for any of the top 10 players could hold the secret to their individual success in Australia, where the temperature on court can easily soar to 100 degrees.
Maria Sharapova’s return to defend her title is also being hyped by the management for good reason. The lady’s tour is mired in mediocrity and the game needs Maria or a healthy Serena to lift it back to its former high quality status. My money is on Maria to come storming back in great form, and to win the title without losing a set. I wonder what the odds are for her to win? Instead of buying a paper fan, maybe I should bet my $10 on Maria!

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