Archive for the 'Heineken Open' Category


“This is very special to me,” said Ferrer. “The second time is always more difficult.”

 David Ferrer needed barely an hour to dispense with Argentine rival David Nalbandian to capture the 2011 Heineken Open singles title, 6-3 6-2. The tournament top seed made no race of a match that promise so much, running down anything his rival had to throw at him and eventually breaking down his game in convincing fashion. “I think David did not have a good day and when I broke him to win the first set, he lost concentration,” reflected Ferrer. “I knew to win, I had to make the points long and the match long to make him tired … but it wasn’t a long match today.” Nalbandian started the stronger and had chances to break service twice early in the opening set, but could not convert them. Gradually, Ferrer turned the momentum his way. He achieved his only break of the first set at 4-3 and Nalbandian showed his frustration by smashing his racquet into the court. He was never the same from that point. “I had some chances and didn’t take them,” he lamented. “Sometimes, I missed easy shots … one an easy backhand on break point. “If that had gone in, it might have been different.” Ferrer served an ace to close out the set and immediately had Nalbandian’s serve under pressure in the to start the second. He broke at 2-2 and won the final four games to wrap up the contest in 68 minutes.  

This is Ferrer’s second title in Auckland and the 10th of his career. 

Earlier, Spaniards Marcel Granollers and Tommy Robredo saw off Swede Johan Brunstrom and Aussie Stephen Huss to capture the Panasonic Doubles title. The eventual winners broke once to capture the opening set, but had to withstand a strong comeback from their rivals in the second. Brunstrom and Huss staved off one match point at 5-3, but squandered a chance to steal the set at 6-5 in the tiebreak. The Spanish duo held their nerve to win the final three points for victory.


Ferrer v. Nalbandian in Auckland final.

A clinical David Ferrer overcame Colombian Santiago Giraldo 6-3 7-5 to set up a final showdown against Argentinian David Nalbandian at the Heineken Open in Auckland. The nimble-footed Spaniard came to the net with ease and drove forehands regularly past the world number 64, who was playing in his first ATP Tour semi-final. It told as Ferrer stepped up his game in the eighth game to break the Colombian’s serve. But, to his credit, Giraldo did not give in and made Ferrer fight for his serve. He lost the set, but his head was held high. The second set got off to the worst possible start for the rookie, when he was broken by Ferrer, before the top seed held his own serve to claim a 2-0 lead. But the unseeded South American’s fan club lifted him, and he broke Ferrer’s serve in the sixth game. All of a sudden, the momentum was with Giraldo as he took a 4-3 lead. The Colombian support crew were ecstatic, and the crowd hopped on board to lift Giraldo, but instead gave Ferrer the motivation – summed up by the Spaniard breaking serve to take a 6-5 lead and serve for the match.

Nalbandian, meanwhile, progressed to the final by defeating second seed Nicolas Almagro 6-4 6-2. The world number 27, who is scheduled to play Lleyton Hewitt in the first round of the Australian Open, looked patchy early on as he returned many of Almagro’s serves into the net. On his own serve, however, the Argentinian looked the part. Some long rallies ensued before the sixth seed had his first break-point opportunity in the ninth game. He duly converted to have the advantage heading in to the second set. Almagro’s first appearance in the semi-finals of the Auckland tournament looked to be over as early as the first game of the second set, where he was broken by Nalbandian after a long deuce game. He was broken again in the seventh game to hand the Argentinian a 5-2 lead and a fired-up Nalbandian served for the match and booked his ticket to the final – without having dropped a set.


Auckland semis decided….David F & David N are favoured,

Top seed David Ferrer secured his place in the semi-finals of the ATP Heineken Open in Auckland with a gritty three-set win over Philipp Kolhschreiber. The Spaniard, number seven in the world, was on court for two hours and 43 minutes against the eighth seed, getting off to a solid start with a 6-3 opening-set win. Kolhscreiber hit back to level matters on a tie-break, before Ferrer saw the match out 6-3 6-7 (4/7) 6-3.

The 28-year-old will now face Colombian Santiago Giraldo in the last four, after he brushed past Thomaz Bellucci. After taking the first set 6-2, Giraldo needed just one break of serve to take the second 6-4.

The other semi-final will be between David Nalbandian and wild card Nicolas Almagro. Nalbandian earned and took just one break point throughout his clash with John Isner, taking the first set 6-4 and then winning the second on a tie-break, 7-6 (7/3). Almagro needed just over two hours to knock out France’s Adrian Mannarino, serving 11 aces as he won 7-6 (7/3) 6-7 (1/7) 6-2.


Nalbandian will be a formidable challenger at the Aussie Open.

Argentinian David Nalbandian was made to work hard against Italian Fabio Fognini before prevailing 7-6 (7/3) 6-4 in his first-round match at the Heineken Open in Auckland. The first set went to the tie-break after some extravagant exchanges between the pair, but it was the sixth seed who held his nerve to edge ahead in the match. Nalbandian then broke Fognini’s serve to secure a straight-sets success, but his form will have left his vocal supporters anxious heading into his second-round match after he missed many easy points on his way to victory.

Seventh seed Thomaz Bellucci of Brazil also toiled to reach round two, eventually getting past American qualifier Michael Russell 6-4 6-7 (4/7) 7-5. The 31st-ranked Brazilian capitalised on his third match-point to triumph in two hours and 48 minutes and set up a meeting with 2007 runner-up Tommy Robredo. Fifth seed Juan Monaco did not fare so well, though, Frenchman Adrian Mannarino defeating the Argentinian 6-4 6-3.

Spain’s Marcel Granollers and Germany’s Tobias Kamke also advanced in straight sets at the expense of American Bobby Reynolds and Spaniard Pere Riba respectively. Kamke will face top seed David Ferrer in round two. Frenchman Arnaud Clement battled from a set down to beat Belgium’s Xavier Malisse 4-6 6-2 7-5 while German Philipp Petzschner edged Dutchman Thiemo De Bakker 6-1 6-7 (5/7) 7-6 (7/3). Romanian Victor Hanescu also needed three sets to get the better of South African Kevin Anderson 7-6 (9/7) 6-7 (3/7) 6-4 and Robin Haase recovered to beat Pablo Cuevas 3-6 7-6 (7/3) 7-6 (7/3).


Great Field for New Zealand’s 2011 Heineken Open.

The 2011 Heineken Open looks set to be another blockbuster tournament with plenty of new talent, experience and crowd pleasers. There are two former champions and the defending champion in the 19-player field. Four players who have been ranked in the world’s top five, including former No1 Juan Carlos Ferrero as well as a number of new players to the tournament.

World No7 David Ferrer of Spain, the 2007 champion will be the top seed and has just completed playing at the ATP World Tour finals in London. Ferrer along with countrymen Albert Montanes won two ATP singles titles each in 2010. Another Spaniard, Juan Carlos Ferrero took away three titles this year. The second seed is the defending champion, world No19 and the man who won the longest professional tennis match in history, John Isner. The 2.06m (6’9”) American won the 2010 Heineken Open in dramatic fashion over Frenchman, Arnaud Clement for his first and only career title. He has been a beaten finalist in three other tournaments this year – Memphis, Belgrade and Atlanta as well as playing the historic 11 hour five minute match at Wimbledon.

The third seed, with a ranking of 25, Montanes had a remarkable year, starting by reaching the semifinals at the Heineken Open he won the tournament at Estoril, beating Roger Federer in the semis and also claimed the title at Stuttgart as well as making the semis at three other events and the quarters at two tournaments. Fourth seed is Heineken Open regular visitor, Juan Monaco of Argentina. The world No26 reached one ATP final (Santiago) three semifinals – Buenos Aires, Acapulco and Shanghai and the quarters at the Indian Wells Masters Series. It will be his sixth visit to Auckland. Also seeded will be No27th ranked David Nalbandian. The former No3 and Wimbledon runner up from 2002 has 11 career singles titles to his credit, including winning at Washington this year.


John Isner wins his first ATP title.

American John Isner won the first title of his career with a three-set victory over French veteran Arnaud Clement in Saturday’s final of the Heineken Open, a final Australian Open tune-up.

The big-serving Isner used 22 aces to take down Clement 6-3, 5-7, 7-6 (7-2). The American belted a total of 78 aces in his five matches during the tournament.

The 24-year-old Isner battled off match point in the 12th game of the final set to set the score to deuce. The 6-foot-9 Isner then fired a pair of aces to send the match into a decisive tiebreak, where he cruised to victory.

Isner’s only other appearance in a title match occurred in 2007, when he lost to fellow American Andy Roddick in Washington.

The 32-year-old Clement dropped to 4-7 in his career finals, with his last title coming in DC in 2006.

Isner leads the all-time series with the 2001 Aussie Open runner-up Clement, 2-0. The American also beat the Frenchman in a Sydney qualifying match in 2008.

With the victory, Isner took home $64,250.


Nalbandian and del potro both win titles.


Argentine fourth seed David Nalbandian defeated Finland’s unseeded Jarkko Nieminen to win the Medibank International Sydney final, 6-3, 6-7 (9/11), 6-2 on Saturday.

It was Nalbandian’s 10th career ATP title in his 20th final appearance, and left Nieminen with just one title from nine finals.

Nalbandian appeared to be heading for a comfortable straight sets victory when he was serving for the match at 5-4, but was broken to love as Nieminen surged back into contention.

The left-handed Finn battled back, taking the second set in a tiebreaker 11 points to nine.

But Nalbandian broke Nieminen’s serve three times in the final set to take the championship in two hours and 16 minutes.


Top seed Juan Martin del Potro of Argentina made a perfect start to his 2009 ATP World Tour season, clinching his fifth singles title on Saturday at the Heineken Open in Auckland by defeating American No. 6 seed Sam Querrey 6-4, 6-4.

Del Potro broke Querrey to start the title match at the ATP World Tour 250 tennis tournament, and after dropping serve in the sixth game, clinched the opening set 6-4 by winning the final three games. He again broke Querrey at 4-4 in the second set and proceeded to serve out the match in one hour and 24 minutes.


del potro to face querrey in heineken open final.


Top seed Juan Martin del Potro became the first Argentine to reach the final of the Heineken Open as he defeated No. 3 seed Robin Soderling 6-4, 6-3 in the semi-finals of the ATP World Tour 250 tennis tournament in Auckland on Friday.

The 20-year-old broke a streak of six consecutive semi-final losses in Auckland by Argentines going back to 1996. He will take on No. 6 seeded American Sam Querrey, who saved two match points to defeat No. 2 seed David Ferrer 3-6, 6-3, 7-6(4), in Saturday’s championship for the first time.

Del Potro never faced a break point while converting three of six break points on Soderling’s serve in the one hour and 17 minute match. The Tandil native broke in the ninth game of the opening set and broke in the fifth and ninth games of the second set to seal the win.

Last season del Potro erupted onto the scene by winning four ATP World Tour titles in five finals and finishing as the youngest member in the Top 10 at No. 9.

The 21-year-old Querrey is the first American to reach the Auckland final since Michael Chang (l. to M. Norman) in 2000. The last American to win the title was Scott Davis (d. Chesnokov) in 1990.

Querrey, who captured his first ATP World Tour title in Las Vegas last March, fired 10 aces in the two hour and nine minute match. It was the first meeting between the two. Ferrer, who captured the Auckland title two years ago, came into the match with a 12-3 career mark at the tournament.

After Ferrer won the opening set with a break in the eighth game, Querrey took a 3-1 lead with a break. Querrey lost serve in the seventh game but broke back and then served out the set to level the match. In the third set, Ferrer led 3-1 and served for the match at 5-4 but was broken at 15-40. The Spaniard held two match points when Querrey was serving at 5-6, 15-40 but the American hit two winners and came back to hold. In the tie-break, Querrey took early control with a 3-0 lead and raced out to a 5-1 advantage before Ferrer cut it to 5-4. But Querrey won the final two points to secure the victory.

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Del Potro’s 2009 season to begin at heineken open.


Twenty-year-old Argentinean Juan Martin Del Potro the current world No8 will head the field for the January 12-17 tournament and will bring with him one of the best records of the year.

An exceptional 2008 including a winning streak of 23 matches in a row beginning with his first career title at Stuttgart (beating Richard Gasquet in the final). Kitzbuhel (defeated Jurgen Melzer for the title).

He followed that with two more back-to-back titles at Los Angeles accounting for Andy Roddick and Washington (beating Viktor Troicki) before the run of four in a row came to an end at the US Open quarterfinals with a loss to Andy Murray.

The 1.98m tall right-hander with a big serve and big groundstrokes now has a total of four singles titles to his credit. He was also a finalist at Tokyo (lost to Tomas Berdych) and reached the semis at s-Hertogenbosh and Basel along with three quarterfinals – Munich, US Open and the ATP Masters Series at Madrid.

Additionally Del Potro has helped his country to the Davis Cup final against Spain later this month. In the semifinals he won his two singles matches against Russia beating Nikolay Davydenko and Igor Andreev.

His late year consistency has earned him a placed in the elite top-eight year-end Tennis Masters Cup in Shanghai next week.

“Del Potro is an undeniable talent and to have had the run he managed prior to the US Open is phenomenal for someone who at the time was still a teenager. He has a real presence on court and is a rising star,” says Heineken Open tournament director Richard Palmer.

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