Archive for the 'Nicolas Almagro' Category


The #6 and #10 seeds are gone in week #1.

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Robin Soderling withdrew from the U.S. Open because of illness. The Swede was scheduled to face qualifier Louk Sorensen in the first round Wednesday. “Lucky loser” Rogerio Dutra da Silva of Brazil took his spot. His agent said in a statement that Soderling started feeling “really bad” Tuesday night with stomach pain and a headache. A doctor recommended he not play. Soderling had not played since withdrawing from Montreal with a wrist injury in early August.

“Wrist is feeling better. Travelling to NY tomorrow,” he tweeted Aug. 21. Soderling missed Cincinnati because of a throat problem that agent Nina Wennerstrom said might be related to the virus that sidelined him in New York. He won at Bastad in his last tournament in mid-July. The two-time French Open runner-up reached the quarterfinals at Flushing Meadows last year to equal his best result.

Julien Benneteau powered his way through to the second round, eliminating No. 10 seed Nicolas Almagro in his bid for the 2011 US Open. Armed with a rocket for a serve, the Frenchman bested the Spanish clay-court specialist in straight sets, 6-2, 6-4, 6-3. The match was evenly contested from the baseline, but the deciding factor proved to be service games and break-point chances. Benneteau fared better in both categories, capitalizing on a 62 percent first-serve percentage and converting on 6-of-10 break-point chances. Almagro, on the other hand, faltered, as his first serve let him down throughout the match (49 percent) and he failed convert on break point opportunities. The 10th seed went 1-of-13 in those critical moments.





Gilles Simon beat Mikhail Youzhny in the semi-finals of the German Open in Hamburg and will face Spain’s Nicolas Almagro in the final.


Simon came into the match off the back of an impressive quarter-final performance against fellow Frenchman Gael Monfils and again had to show his class to come from behind and see off Youzhny 3-6 6-3 6-1. Almagro will meet Simon in the final after the third seed was victorious in the all-Spanish semi-final against Fernando Verdasco, beating his compatriot 6-4 6-1. The two met in the final of the Open de Tenis Comunidad in Valencia back in 2006, with Almagro winning 6-2 6-3 on that occasion.

Simon has yet to win an ATP World Tour 500 tournament whereas his opponent has two 500 series titles to his name, both coming in Mexico in 2008 and 2009.


Soderling finally edged past Fernando Verdasco 2-6 7-5 6-4 in a two hour and 42 minute epic.

Robin Soderling saved three match points before winning his second-round clash at the Rome Masters on Tuesday. Soderling had made a disastrous start, slipping a double-break down and sacrificing the opening set, and looked down and out in the second when Verdasco served for the match before rallying for an unlikely win.

Seventh seed Tomas Berdych eased past Argentina’s Juan Monaco 6-2 6-2, while 16th seed Richard Gasquet needed just 62 minutes to beat Russian qualifier Igor Andreev 6-1 6-2. Lucky loser Jarkko Nieminen also advanced to round three. In first-round action, Marin Cilic won his all-Croatian battle with Ivo Karlovic when Karlovic was forced to retire with a back problem trailing 6-4 1-0.

Kevin Anderson also withdrew injured when he trailed 7-6 (7-1) 1-0 to Sam Querrey. Ninth seed Nicolas Almagro marked his debut in the world’s top 10 with an emphatic 6-0 7-5 win over Italian wild card Simone Bolelli, taking the first set in just 22 minutes.

Fourteenth seed Stanislas Wawrinka came from behind to beat Fabio Fognini 6-7 (7-5) 6-2 6-4, while Ivan Ljubicic, Juan Ignacio Chela and Feliciano Lopez were also first-round winners.



Nicolas Almagro will join No. 1 Rafael Nadal and No. 6 David Ferrer as the third Spaniard amongst the game’s current crop of elite players.

Nicolas Almagro broke new ground in his career on Thursday when he defeated Russian Nikolay Davydenko 7-6(2), 6-3 in the third round of the Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell. In reaching the quarter-finals of the ATP World Tour 500 clay-court tennis tournament, the 25-year-old Almagro will crack the Top 10 of the South African Airways 2011 ATP Rankings on Monday.

“I knew that today’s match could have a special reward,” said Almagro. “It was the third time I had a chance to get to the Top 10, after Acapulco and Monte-Carlo first. It’s an incredible feeling. There’s no better place to achieve it than in my home club in front of my own people and my family and all the home support. It’s a great reward for myself and the work of my whole team.”

The eighth seed, who reached the Barcelona semi-finals in 2006 (l. to Nadal), will next face former World No. 1 Juan Carlos Ferrero, who battled back from a 3-1 deficit in the third set to defeat Italian qualifier Simone Vagnozzi 7-6(3), 4-6, 6-4 in two hours and 43 minutes. Ferrero and Almagro clashed in the Barcelona quarter-finals five years ago, with Almagro prevailing in straight sets. They have split their career meetings 2-2.



“I showed a lot of willpower, I had a good attitude, and I was aggressive,” he said afterwards.

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga had to come from a set down to get the better of Juan Monaco at the Monte Carlo Masters on Monday. Tsonga lost the first set 6-4, but hit back to win the next two 6-3 6-2. “I think there are many things I liked in my game today, and I played a very good match.”

Tenth-seed Mikhail Youzhny was an early casualty, losing in three sets to Florian Mayer. The Russian, a semi-finalist in Marseille in February, went down 6-3 2-6 6-3 as German Mayer continued his recent fine form which saw him reach the round of 16 in Miami last time out.

Nicolas Almagro, seeded nine, beat Marcel Granollers 6-3 6-3, 11th seed Viktor Troicki struggled in the first set before seeing off wild card Jean-Rene Lisnard 7-6 (7/4) 6-1 while Richard Gasquet (13) required three sets to overcome Denis Istomin 5-7 6-3 6-4.

Clay court specialist Tommy Robredo proved too strong for Ivan Dodig and there were also wins for qualifiers Olivier Rochus and Frederico Gil. Croatian Marin Cilic lost just six points on serve and broke his opponent five times as he crushed Italian qualifier Filippo Volandri 6-2 6-1, while Robin Haase ended a run of four succesive first-round losses with a hard-fought win over Nikolay Davydenko. The 24-year-old won the first set 7-5, lost the second 4-6 but won the game with a third-set 6-4 win.

Wild card entrant Radek Stepanek saved two match points to come from behind and beat Marcos Baghdatis. Stepanek saved match points at 5-6 and 6-7 in a third-set tie-break, before prevailing 3-6 6-1 7-6 (9/7). He will now meet Andy Murray.


The day’s other games saw Jarkko Nieminen beat Julien Benneteau 4-6 6-3 7-6 (7/3) and Daniel Gimeno-Traver get the better of Santiago Giraldo 7-6 (7-4) 7-5.



David Ferrer beat fellow Spaniard Nicolas Almagro 7-6 (5), 6-7 (2), 6-2 to defend his Mexican Open title on Saturday night.

Ferrer earned his 11th career title and improved to 6-0 against Almagro. He converted his first six break opportunities in the final and was only denied his seventh when Almagro made a clutch forehand that landed on the line to save a match point in the seventh game of the final set. Almagro could only convert four of 13 break chances.

Ferrer improved to 14-2 this season, a record that also includes the Auckland title and a semifinal run at the Australian Open. Almagro, the third seed, came into the final with a 13-match winning streak that included titles in Argentina and Brazil the past two weeks. He was bidding to become the first player to win three of the four events on the ATP Tour’s Latin American clay-court season.


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.”


Djokovic celebrates an easy win as Troicki retires.

Novak Djokovic has reached the round of 16 at Australian Open for the fifth year in a row when his Davis Cup teammate and world no. 27 Viktor Troicki retired after just 39 minutes on Hisense Arena on Friday. A lenghty baseline rally ended with Troicki hitting the net to bring up the first break point for Nole in the second game of the match. The chance went after great Viktor’s service, but he earned the second with a fantastic lob, and this time didn’t waste it. A year younger Serb converted it with a forehand winner down the line for an early advantage. Troicki fought back immediately with a rebreak, but Djokovic broke him once again and then held to 15 for 4-1. Viktor saved two break/set points in the eighth game, but Nole capitalised on the third to clinch the set 6-2. Troicki then retired due to a stomach muscle strain.

“I just heard that he had some struggles with his stomach muscle, but I wasn’t sure how serious it is,” said Djokovic. “I didn’t know that he’s not able to serve… He obviously tried his best. It’s the third round of a Grand Slam. It’s not the way you want to finish the tournament, definitely. It’s sad for him, but I have to move on.” Troicki admitted he’d struggled with the injury throughout the week. “I was thinking it might get better for today, but it didn’t,” he said. “I didn’t want to risk anything; the season’s just started. I had to be 100 per cent if I wanted to beat Novak – if any chance, I needed to be 100 per cent – so today I think I took a smart decision and retired from the match.”

Novak next faces no.14 seed Nicolas Almagro. The Spaniard beat world no.16 Croat Ivan Ljubicic in straight sets 6-4, 7-6(8), 6-3.


Almagro wins another title in Gataad.

Nicolas Almagro continued to light up the post-Wimbledon clay-court swing as he won his second trophy in three weeks with a 7-5, 6-1 victory over Richard Gasquet Sunday in the final of the Allianz Suisse Open Gstaad.

As champion of the ATP World Tour 250 clay-court tennis tournament, Almagro received 250 South African Airways 2010 ATP Ranking points and €68,450, while Gasquet earned 150 points and €35,980 in prize money.

Almagro’s victory in Gstaad follows hot on the heels of his triumph in Bastad two weeks ago, when he snapped a 17-month title drought with victory over home favourite Robin Soderling in the final. The Spaniard improved to a 7-2 mark in ATP World Tour finals, each one coming on clay. It is the second time he has won two ATP World Tour titles in the same year, having also done so in 2008 at Acapulco and Costa do Sauipe during the Latin American “Golden Swing”.


Almagro defeats Soderling to take Swedish Open title.

Nicolas Almagro upset home favourite and defending champion Robin Soderling in three sets to win the Swedish Open on clay in Bastad.

Fourth seed Almagro came through 7-5 3-6 6-2 to secure the sixth title of his career and his first of 2010.

The Spaniard recovered from dropping the second set to break twice in a row on his way to wrapping up the decider after one hour 57 minutes.

Soderling was playing his fourth successive three-set match of the week.

Almagro said the win was a “big moment” for him.

“Robin is a great player. Here in Bastad he’s like a hero,” Almagro said, adding he had prepared for the match by trying to imagine how Soderling would play.

“I tried to be him. I was thinking about the match all night and this morning, and finally I can beat him and I’m very happy,” he said.

The 24-year-old Almagro, a clay-court specialist, also beat Soderling when the pair last met, winning in straight sets in Madrid in May.

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