Posts Tagged ‘James Blake


David Nalbandian loses in Washington DC as he was defeated by James Blake.


Defending champion David Nalbandian dropped out of the Legg Mason Tennis Classic in Washington DC at the first hurdle as he was defeated by James Blake. Nalbandian, seeded eighth, never found his rhythm as he lost 6-2 6-4 in the second-round clash. The Argentinian was the only seed to lose as number 11 John Isner topped Tobias Kamke 6-1 6-3, 13th seed Kevin Anderson rallied to dispatch qualifier Chris Guccione 3-6 6-2 7-6 (7-0) and number 16 Jarkko Nieminen beat Igor Kunitsyn 7-5 6-4, all in second-round clashes.

The rest of today’s action was in the first round, and was highlighted by a lengthy battle between Grigor Dimitrov and Tim Smyczek, which eventually saw Dimitrov come through 4-6 7-6 (7-3) 7-6 (7-3). Ryan Sweeting beat Alex Bogomolov Jr 6-2 6-4, Flavio Cipolla dispatched Marsel Ilhan 7-5 6-0 and Michael Berrer was a 7-5 6-1 winner over Paolo Lorenzi.

Wildcard Ryan Harrison advanced with a 6-4 1-6 6-1 win over Mischa Zverev, Somdev Devvarman beat Denis Gremelmayr 6-2 6-3 and Tommy Haas beat Amer Delic 6-2 6-3.


James Blake won through to the second round of the Atlanta Tennis Championships with a comeback win against Ernests Gulbis.


Blake had lost his only two previous meetings against the young Latvian and was immediately in trouble when he conceded the opening set. But the 31-year-old rallied, either side of a rain delay, to triumph 5-7 7-6 (7/5) 6-2 and set up a second-round meeting with compatriot and third seed John Isner.

Fellow American Michael Russell also won through after he brushed aside teenage wildcard Donald Young 6-0 6-3, but the news was not so good for other local hopefuls Alex Bogomolov jnr and Ryan Sweeting. Seventh seed Bogomolov was bundled out by Luxembourg’s Gilles Muller 6-3 7-6 (8/6), while Sweeting lost a hard-fought three-setter against India’s eighth seed Somdev Devvarman 6-4 3-6 6-4. Japan’s Tatsuma Ito claimed his first ATP Tour win by beating Michael Berrer 7-6 (8/6) 6-4.


Roddick, Fish, Querrey & Blake all advance in Memphis.

Andy Roddick recovered from losing the first set to see off Lithuania’s Richard Berankis at the Regions Morgan Keegan Championships in Memphis. The American sent down 23 aces, including 11 in the final set, as he battled back to claim a 4-6 6-2 6-3 success in just over one-and-a-half hours. Roddick wasted three break-point chances in the opening set as Berankis made the most of his solitary chance to break the home favourite’s serve, but the former US Open champion took his two break opportunities in the second and one in the third to turn the match around. Berankis’ cause was undermined by his poor serving, the Lithuanian managing just 38% of first serves.

Fourth seed Mardy Fish recorded a straight-sets win over Teymuraz Gabashvili. The American wrapped up a 6-1 7-5 win over his Russian opponent.

Sam Querry, the fifth seed, had a rather tougher test as the American finally saw off Denis Istomin of Uzbekistan 6-7 (5/7) 7-6 (7/5) 6-4 in two hours 21 minutes. It was a match dominated by the serve, with Querry claiming the only break in the final set.

Former world number four James Blake defeated Brazil’s Ricardo Mello 6-4 6-3.


“I’m playing well, I’m playing confident and doing the things I need to do,” Raonic said.

Canadian Milos Raonic continued his impressive early-season form by beating former world number four James Blake in straight sets in their second-round clash at the San Jose Open on Wednesday. The confident, big serving 20-year-old showed his mettle in a 6-2 7-6 triumph to set up a quarter-final against Lithuanian Richard Berankis, who defeated American Donald Young 6-4 5-7 7-5. “Serving well, taking care of my serve and putting pressure on return games. Everything’s coming together.” Raonic’s serve did let him down once, however, when he was broken at 5-4 when serving for the match, but he recovered to persevere through a tie-breaker.

After reaching the fourth round of last month’s Australian Open as a qualifier, Raonic showed more composure and recorded 13 aces in his latest triumph. “To overcome what happened in that game, that good game he played, was really satisfying,” Raonic said. “I was more excited than usual after my win over James today.”

Defending champion and top-seeded Fernando Verdasco advanced past American Rajeev Ram in an easy 6-3 6-2 first-round rout. Second-seeded Gael Monfils also made in through the first round thanks to a 6-3 6-2 win over Bradley Klahn. In the day’s other first-round action, big-serving Croatian Ivo Karlovic knocked off home favourite Ryan Sweeting 6-4 6-4 while American Robert Kendrick topped Russian Igor Kunitsyn 7-5 3-6 6-4


Djokovic’s next match with Fish will be his toughest to date.

Third seed Novak Djokovic is through to the fourth round of the US Open after knocking out American James Blake 6-1 7-6 6-3 on Saturday night.

Djokovic, a runner-up at Flushing Meadows in 2007 and a losing semi-finalist in the last two years, stormed past 30-year-old Blake to take the first set in 22 minutes. Blake delighted the home crowd on Arthur Ashe Stadium by breaking for a 4-2 lead in the second set but the Serbian broke back immediately and won the tie-break before wrapping up the match relatively comfortably.

Djokovic now faces another American in Mardy Fish as the 19th seed continued his impressive recent form with a 4-6 6-3 6-4 1-6 6-3 victory over France’s Arnaud Clement, his 19th win in his last 21 matches.


Youzhny, Monfils and Blake early loses in Cinci.

Gael Monfils suffered an early exit in the ATP Western & Southern Financial Group Masters at the hands of qualifer Alejandro Falla.

The Colombian converted three of his four break-point chances on his way to recording an impressive 6-3 6-4 triumph in just over an hour.

Next up for Falla in Cincinnati will be Germany’s Philipp Kohschreiber, who battled back to beat Horacio Zeballos 6-7 (2-7) 6-3 6-4.

However James Blake fell at the first hurdle, the former champion suffering a 6-3 6-0 loss at the hands of Russian Denis Istomin in just 45 minutes.

“I didn’t have my best, or even close to my best. I haven’t felt prepared for a tournament for a long time thanks to a lot of injuries,” the American said.

“I’ve felt like things have been getting better, and then you get setback after setback and it takes its toll.”

There was better news for Blake’s compatriot Mardy Fish, as he knocked out Frenchman Gilles Simon 7-6 (7-4) 7-5.

Andy Murray now knows he will face Jeremy Chardy in his opening match after the Frenchman eliminated German Florian Mayer 6-2 7-6 (7-4).

Julien Benneteau won an all-French tussle with Michael Llodra 3-6 6-3 6-2, while Richard Gasquet rallied from a poor opening set to triumph 2-6 6-4 6-1 against Russian Mikhail Youzhny.

In early second round action, seventh seed Tomas Berdych saw off the challenge of Paul-Henri Mathieu of France 6-4 6-4, while Marcos Baghdatis won a final-set tie-breaker to knock out Thomaz Bellucci 6-2 4-6 7-6 (7-4).


Weren’t these the same guys who supported Agassi?

James Blake and Andy Roddick blasted Wayne Odesnik for admitting to importing human growth hormones in January before a tuneup tournament to the first major of the year.

Odesnik, 24, who lives in Fort Lauderdale and is ranked 98th, was fined $8,320 in an Australian court Friday and faces a possible two-year ban from tennis. The ITF handles all doping decisions and is investigating the case.

“That’s just plain cheating and they should throw him out of tennis,” Roddick said after his second-round victory over Russian Igor Andreev that ended after midnight Friday.

“I was shocked. We don’t need stories like that. That’s the minority. If that’s the case I have zero sympathy.

Blake, who played World Team Cup with Odesnik, was also unforgiving.

“It’s the same thing you hear about the criminal next door — he seemed like a nice guy until they found something going on,” Blake said. “People look for a way to get ahead, and that’s unfortunate. It’s something that’s frustrating. You want to feel like you’re playing on a fair playing field. I’m glad they caught him.”

Roddick, who has practiced with Odesnik near his home in Austin, became more agitated as the questions continued.

“To have it be one of our guys and for us to lose a guy in the Top 100, it makes me a little angry,” Roddick said. “I don’t want that stigma attached to our country and to our players, so it really [angers] me.

“I take a lot of pride in what we have to do on a daily basis and how responsible we have to be for one …. jackass to ruin it for the rest of us.”


Marcos Baghdatis defeats Federer in a 3rd set tie breaker.

Marcos Baghdatis caused a major shock at the BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells as he sent top seed Roger Federer crashing out in the third round.

Baghdatis condemned Federer to only his second defeat in 13 matches this year after fending off three match points in an absorbing encounter at the hardcourt event.

Swiss star Federer appeared to be on course for a routine victory over the 27th-seeded Cypriot as he claimed the opening set with a lone break of serve, but Baghdatis rallied in the next, converting his only break point chance to pull level.

The third set went all the way to a tie-break after the two players had traded breaks of service, with Baghdatis moving through the gears when it mattered most to post a famous 5-7 7-5 7-6 (7/4) triumph.

The win was Baghdatis’ first against the world number one having lost their previous six encounters, the most recent of which came in the quarter-finals of the grass court tournament in Halle in 2008.

There were differing fortunes for two home favourites as Andy Roddick progressed with ease but James Blake bowed out.

Seventh seed Roddick defeated Dutchman Thiemo De Bakker 6-3 6-4 to set up a last-16 tie with 22nd-seeded Austrian Jurgen Melzer, who progressed after German Simon Greul pulled out prior to their match with illness.

Roddick said: “I felt pretty good. I felt like the points he was winning he was either having to play a pretty high risk shot, maybe go for a winner, or he was having to go deep into rallies.

“So if you do that over the course of a match, you normally like your chances.”

Blake, meanwhile, lost in three sets to unseeded Spaniard Nicolas Almagro, 6-4 3-6 6-3.

Sixth seed Robin Soderling saw off Feliciano Lopez in two tough sets, eventually winning 7-6 (7/3) 6-4.

Lopez, seeded 28th, stayed with his opponent despite not earning a break point in the entire match.

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, the ninth seed from France, progressed with a 4-6 6-3 6-3 triumph over Albert Montanes, while 18th-ranked Tommy Robredo defeated Dudi Sela 6-3 6-0.


Roddick moves on past Blake.

Andy Roddick ended his losing streak against fellow American James Blake at the ATP Morgan Keegan Championships but third seed Radek Stepanek and fourth seed Tommy Haas crashed out in Memphis on Wednesday.

Roddick, who headed into his first-round clash having lost his last three matches against Blake, had a wobble in the second set but eventually prevailed 6-3 4-6 7-6 (7-3).

Belgium’s Xavier Malisse accounted for Haas, booking his place in round two with a 6-4 3-6 6-4 victory over the German.

In other first-round action on Wednesday, Leonardo Mayer of Argentina beat American Mardy Fish 6-4 6-0 while eighth seed Sam Querrey breezed through his all-American clash with Rajeev Ram 6-2 6-3.

In the second round, Latvian youngster Ernests Gulbis stunned Stepanek, knocking out the Czech player 7-6 (7/5) 7-5.

American sixth seed John Isner also advanced to the quarter-finals with a 6-7 (3/7) 6-4 6-4 victory over Finland’s Jarkko Nieminen while Germany’s Philipp Petzschner ousted Kazakhstan’s Evgeny Korolev 7-6 (7/5) 7-6 (7/5).


Support the Tampa Tennis Classic, March 22nd.

A celebrity packed tennis lineup, featuring Andy Roddick, James Blake, Jim Courier and Vera Zvonareva come together for fifth time in the Tampa Tennis Classic benefiting Raymond James Courier’s Kids, an inner-city youth tennis program founded by Jim Courier that supports First Serve tennis programs.

The Tampa Tennis Classic will feature America’s biggest names in tennis, and will be held at the St. Pete Times Forum, Monday, March 22, 2010 at 7:30 p.m. On the men’s side, with 60 singles career titles between them, these three are sure to wow the crowds in Tampa in a battle of the stars. Representing the women, Zvonareva is currently ranked number nine in the world and holds nine singles titles.

Raymond James Courier’s Kids and the USTA’s First Serve Program are dedicated to providing opportunities and positive life alternatives to at-risk youth. The programs offer a blend of tennis instruction, computer classes, academics and mentoring to promote positive values, healthy habits and education.

The First Serve Program is the USTA’s national initiative to introduce inner city youth to the life-long sport of tennis. The program was launched in Florida and has 4 basic components: tennis instruction, computer classes, academics and mentoring. First Serve offers its programs free to participants. For more information, or to get involved with the program, visit

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