Posts Tagged ‘Milos Raonic

09
May
12

Federer survives a scare from Milos Raonic.

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Milos Raonic pushed Roger Federer to the brink of elimination in the second round of the Madrid Open. But the hard-hitting native of Thornhill, Ont., couldn’t complete the upset as the third-seeded Federer survived two tiebreakers en route to a 4-6, 7-5, 7-6 (4) win Wednesday. Raonic did what he could against the Swiss star, firing 21 aces in a match that lasted two hours 13 minutes. But he also missed plenty of opportunities by converting just one of eight break point chances. The 21-year-old last lost to Federer in three sets at the third round at Indian Wells in March, but had hoped to build on his win over No. 4 Andy Murray two weeks ago in Barcelona. “I felt I played really well the whole time doing what I wanted to do,” said Raonic. “I was dictating on my serve. I had a lot of looks on his serve, I came up a bit short today though. “I was there the whole match and doing the right things. It was good, and I’ll probably be more happy in a few days about the outcome.”

Federer, who hasn’t been eliminated from a tournament in the second round since the 2010 Rome Masters, will face France’s Richard Gasquet in the third round. Rafael Nadal had an easier time in his first match on the blue clay as he beat Nikolay Davydenko 6-2, 6-2.

 

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08
May
12

Raonic downs Nalbandian 6-4, 6-4…..Federer is next!

Milos Raonic From Canada Serves

Milos Raonic dominated former grand slam finalist David Nalbandian 6-4, 6-4 on Tuesday in the first round of the Madrid Open. The 21-year-old from Thornhill, Ont., defeated the Argentine in just 74 minutes with his 16th ace of the match. Nalbandian played in the Wimbledon final a decade ago and won the Madrid tournament when it was played indoors back in 2007. Raonic, ranked No. 23 in the world, will face Swiss ace Roger Federer in Wednesday’s second round, having lost to the world No. 3 in the third round at Indian Wells in March. “I hope I can do much of the same stuff (as I did) in March. I need to serve better than I did then,” Raonic said. “I’m playing well and confident and I’m serving well, so that should be a big help.” Raonic says playing a star like Federer is a big challenge, but tennis a simple game once the players step between the lines. “He’s achieved a lot of great things, but when we step out onto the court he’s just another tennis player who wants the same thing that I do,” Raonic said of Federer. “You respect him, but you don’t respect him too much. “He’s set a new level for others to aim for. But on court he’s trying to take away from you something that you want.” Raonic ended his win over Nalbandian with 28 winners and just 13 unforced errors in a controlled display of his serving power on clay. He broke twice from three opportunities while never facing a break point on his own serve. The hard-serving Raonic started the match with a break and added another in the eighth game of the opening set. The second set was more one-way traffic for Raonic, with a break of his opponent yielding a 5-4 lead. He completed the win on the first of three match points. The match marked Raonic’s first appearance on the controversial blue clay in Madrid. Several players, including Raonic, were critical of the surface in the leadup to the tournament but it didn’t seem to affect the Canadian on Tuesday. “I got her early and have been training for almost a week on it. I like the conditions (but) the only tricky thing is the movement,” Raonic said. “It’s not a natural clay so it bundles up after some time. You get a few bad bounces, but other than that it’s not so different. “It’s slippery and hard to change direction, but that benefits me in a way. “

 

27
Apr
12

Andy Murray suffered a surprise exit at the Barcelona Open on Friday, losing in straight sets to big-serving Canadian Milos Raonic.

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The 6ft 5in 21-year-old from Ontario, who crushed sixth seed Nicolas Almagro in the last round, headed into the match having never beaten a top-eight player but rarely looked overawed en route to a 6-4 7-6 (7/3) triumph. He endured a minor blip when serving for the second set, allowing second seed Murray his first break of the match, before breezing through the tie-break to clinch the biggest win of his fledgling career in one hour 44 minutes. Raonic will face third seed David Ferrer or seventh seed Feliciano Lopez in the semi-finals, the Spanish duo meeting in the second quarter-final in Catalonia.

Murray had little difficulty in the last round against Santiago Giraldo, but knew he was in for a battle from the outset today. Raonic’s fierce forehands helped him bring up a break point in the opening game. Murray survived, but two aces from the world number 25 swiftly levelled things up. The first set followed a similar pattern – Murray tested on serve and Raonic holding with ease – until game seven, when a loose drop shot from the Scot resulted in a second break point for the youngster, and this time he capitalised to go 4-3 up. Raonic comfortably held again to move within a game of the set and then, after Murray had dug out the hold with the help of an ace, the Canadian brought up three set points with his ninth ace and duly took the first with a forehand winner. Having managed only four points on the Raonic serve in the first set, Murray looked brighter at the start of the second set, but continued to struggle to make inroads against the serve. The Scot served out to love in game three himself, though, and then took Raonic to deuce in game four before the Canadian pulled through with another huge serve. A superb cross-court winner edged Murray ahead again and again he then troubled the Raonic serve, but could not force the break. Just when the second set looked to be following the same format as the first, Raonic too passed up two break-point opportunities in game seven as Murray squeezed 4-3 ahead. But, after powering through another strong service game, Raonic broke Murray to give himself the chance to serve for the match and claim the biggest scalp of his career. Murray showed his battling qualities by breaking back, though, before two clinical service games took the match into a tie-break. However, if the Scot thought nerves were getting to Raonic, he was sadly mistaken. He cruised into a 5-1 lead and, although Murray engineered a chink of light by taking his two points on serve, there was no way back.

26
Feb
12

Raonic fires his way into today’s Memphis final.

Milos Raonic serves to Benjamin Becker in their semifinal match at the Regions Morgan Keegan Championships tennis tournament in Memphis on Saturday.

Milos Raonic needed only 75 minutes to beat Benjamin Becker of Germany 6-4, 6-4 on Saturday in the semifinals of the Regions Morgan Keegan Championships and reach his second final in as many weeks. The hard-serving player from Thornhill, Ont., won at San Jose last week and is 15-1 in match play this year. Ranked 35th in the world, the ATP World Tour’s first multiple winner this season will try to win his third title Sunday against Austrian Jurgen Melzer, a 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 winner over No. 3 seed Radek Stepanek. “It’s a big thing, especially after the way I’ve been playing,” said Raonic, who lost a three-set final here last year to American Andy Roddick. “I think I’m a much better player, and I’ve matured a lot so I’ve given myself the opportunity a lot better. “I felt last year I was more so squeezing through the matches and just riding the confidence from San Jose. . . . This year I feel like I’ve been coming out of the matches the better player. And also I have improved. I’m a better player than I was a year ago.”

Raonic has won nine straight matches in straight sets with 66 aces here in Memphis. He has held serve in 40 of his 41 games at the event and was so dominant and efficient that Becker scored only five points off Raonic’s serve in each set. Raonic won 29 of his 31 points off his first serve. Becker, playing in his first semifinal since Bangkok in October 2010, had not dropped a set here after being sidelined for six months last year because of an injured left elbow. He felt Raonic’s strength in the eighth game of the second set when the Canadian held serve with a 224 kilometre-an-hour ace that hit Becker in the back. “It just happens when you move toward the T,” Becker said. “He serves so fast it’s tough to react.”

25
Feb
12

The last 2 Americans fall in Memphis while Raonic marches on…..

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John Isner missed out on the men’s semi-finals in Memphis after a straight-sets defeat by Austria’s Jurgen Melzer on Friday. The 26-year-old’s serve let him down in the first set as he was broken twice, and Melzer took the second on a tie-break to complete a 6-3 7-6 (8/6) win. Third seed Radek Stepanek awaits in the last four after dumping out Sam Querrey in straight sets to end American interest in the tournament. The Czech required a tie-break to take the opening set but swept through the second to win 7-6 (7/5) 6-0.

Big-serving Canadian Milos Raonic, seeded fourth, took his place with a straight-sets win over Olivier Rochus. The diminutive Belgian, giving away 11 inches in height to his young opponent, did well to hang in the match in the face of a barrage of 26 aces – to his three – but was beaten 6-3 7-6 (7/3). Germany’s Benjamin Becker is next in Raonic’s cross-hairs after a hard-fought 7-5 7-6 (7/5) win over Lukasz Kubot which lasted over two hours.

20
Feb
12

Raonic successfully defends his title in San Jose.

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Milos Raonic successfully defended his title at the SAP Open in San Jose, beating Denis Istomin 7-6 (7/3) 6-2 in the showpiece final. The 21-year-old, who looked destined for a big year in 2011 after winning this event, lost his way owing to a hip injury suffered while falling at Wimbledon. But he is back to full fitness now and, on this showing, an even hotter prospect. He has only dropped two service games across the last two tournaments in San Jose, and his most lethal weapon was vital here. The first set was won on a tie-break, with Istomin missing a pass and then Raonic crunching a winning forehand. After that, the second set was a formality.

“I feel amazing. It’s definitely a different feeling from the first time last year,” Raonic said.

19
Feb
12

Milos Raonic overpowers Harrison in 78 minutes to reach the San Jose final.

Milos Raonic hits a forehand to Ryan Harrison during semifinal match at the SAP Open tennis tournament in San Jose, Calif., on Saturday. Raonic advanced to the final.

Defending champion Raonic, from Thornhill, Ont., ripped 20 aces to reach his second straight SAP Open final Saturday, beating Harrison 7-6 (4), 6-2. The match took only 78 minutes, with Harrison unable to solve the six-foot-five Canadian’s punishing, powerful serve in the comfortable conditions of an indoor arena. “I think I got a few free points today,” Raonic said. Just a few.

After Raonic’s rapid rise stalled last year with a slip at Wimbledon, he’s making his way back from hip surgery through a similar path. Raonic has dropped only two service games in two years at San Jose and his baseline game is only growing stronger. Raonic will play the winner of Saturday night’s semifinal between Uzbekistan’s Denin Istomin and Frenchman Julien Benneteau. “It was all really new to me last year. I felt it all flew by really quickly,” said Raonic, now 21 years old. “Whereas now, going through all these things again and playing well and everything, I feel like I know how to deal with it all. There’s not stress around it.” All the frustration is left for his opponents. Raonic relied on his serve to force a first-set tiebreaker, smacked two winners past the 19-year-old Harrison for a break in the second set that gave him a 3-1 lead and leaned on his serve the rest of the way. The future of American men’s tennis remains on hold. Harrison, tabbed as one of the country’s promising young players, is still searching for his first ATP Tour final. He has lost three times in the semifinals, including twice last year to Mardy Fish in Atlanta and Los Angeles.

Fresh off a Davis Cup debut that helped the U.S. sweep Switzerland in the first round last weekend, Harrison surged to the semifinals in impressive fashion. He was the first teenager to reach the semifinals at San Jose since eventual champion Andy Murray in 2006 and 2007, and he did it all despite an out-of-whack body clock from the 6,000-mile journey through nine time zones — not to mention switching from clay to indoor courts and coming down from altitude. Not that it mattered. Raonic ripped serves past Harrison from the start, with neither player able to break the other in the first set. In the tiebreaker, Raonic rested on his serve even more. After Harrison’s first forehand landed long for an instant minibreak, Raonic zipped two aces — one up the middle, another out wide. Then he struck a backhand passing shot down the line on the American’s serve, clipping the net and sneaking in for a 4-0 lead that propelled him in the first set. “If he served like that against anybody, it’s going to be a nightmare to break,” said Harrison, who has played against Raonic since the American was 14 years old. “It doesn’t matter who he plays. Whenever he’s serving like that, it’s going to be a tough match for any of the top guys — Roger, Rafa, Novak — all the guys that are the best in the game.” In the only break point of the match for Harrison, he flicked a forehand return wide at 1-1 in the second. Raonic then broke Harrison’s serve in the next game with a pair of bold baseline winners. The rematch from a more famous California tournament turned out to be a complete runaway indoors. Harrison beat Raonic 7-6 (1), 4-6, 6-4 in the third round at Indian Wells last year but couldn’t touch the hard-serving Canadian in such climate-controlled conditions.

Suddenly, Raonic is back on the rise. Raonic rose to as high as No. 25 in the rankings last year — the highest ever for a Canadian — before his season derailed on Wimbledon’s grass. He still earned ATP Newcomer of the Year honours after his first title at San Jose. Raonic, who mimicked 14-time Grand Slam champion Pete Sampras’ serve as a kid, now has another chance to match his childhood idol: He’s one win away from becoming a back-to-back champion in San Jose — something Sampras did with victories in 1996 and 1997. “I think there are a lot of similarities. It’s pretty fluid for both,” said Raonic, now ranked 32nd. “I still think there’s a lot more work I need to do to serve as well as him.”

 

16
Feb
12

Milos Raonic & Andy Roddick both win in San Jose.

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Andy Roddick came from a set down to overcome Denis Kudla in the second round of the SAP Open in San Jose on Wednesday. The former world number one, who is back from injury, dropped the opener on a tie-break before hitting back to win 6-7 (5/7) 7-6 (7/5) 6-4.

Third seed Milos Raonic, the defending champion, banged down 18 aces during his 6-2 7-6 (9/7) win over Tobias Kamke. Kamke had set point in the second-set breaker but could not force a decider. Raonic’s title hopes were also boosted by the withdrawal of top seed Gael Monfils, his scheduled semi-final opponent, due to a knee injury.

Rising star Ryan Harrison got through his first-round match but had to battle hard against Olivier Rochus for a 4-6 6-2 6-3 triumph. The teenager was 3-1 down in the final set, but used his serve to his advantage and turned things around with 27 aces. Sam Querrey lost his first-round fixture with Denis Istomin, taking the first set but then losing 5-7 6-3 7-5. Meanwhile, Matthew Ebden defeated Dudi Sela 6-7 (7/9) 6-2 7-6 (7/1) and fifth seed Julien Benneteau saw off Ryan Sweeting 7-6 (7/3) 7-6 (7/5).

11
Feb
12

Canada and France are tied at 1-1, today’s doubles are critical for both teams.

Thornhill's Milos Raonic prepares to serve in his Davis Cup match against France on Friday night in Vancouver.

Canadian captain Martin Laurendeau has to at the very least consider putting Raonic in the dubs as well instead of Pospisil on Saturday. For starters, Pospisil was obviously demoralized by his very forgettable performance against the powerful Tsonga. He wondered aloud in post-match interviews whether he’d be chosen to play doubles. More to the point, he’s just not playing very well at the moment, and hasn’t delivered a great deal of elite tennis since his magical Davis Cup performance for Canada in Israel last September. So the smart move for Laurendeau might be to wheel out Raonic, a strong doubles player himself, and that awesome serve. Beat the French in doubles, and Canada still has a shot at the huge upset.

The final choices don’t have to be announced until noonish on Saturday, with the match set for 2 p.m. local time (5 p.m. in Toronto). But after a day on which the pro-Canada crowd at Thunderbird Arena on the grounds of UBC started to get the feel of what’s permissable in Davis Cup and the kind of difference they might be able to make this weekend, expect Saturday and Sunday to be filled with raw emotion along with pounding drums, bugles, thundersticks and manner of things not usually associated with this sport. While Pospisil wilted, Raonic had the crowd in full roar by the end of his triumph over Benneateau, with his powerful serve hammering out 24 aces and frustrating the overmatched Frenchman every time he got a sniff. What Raonic didn’t deliver against Lleyton Hewitt at the Australian Open – a dominant performance — he most surely did deliver against Benneteau. Hard to say what the lineups will look like on Saturday. But what we can say is two exciting days for Canadian tennis await.

 

19
Jan
12

Raonic will face the winner of the Hewitt/Roddick match.

Canadian Milos Raonic is trying to start the new season even better than he did a year ago. The No.23 seed had his work cut out for him on Thursday, working his way past Philipp Petzschner 6-4 5-7 6-2 7-5 on Show Court 3. It was in Australia that Raonic qualified for the main draw last year before making a tear to the fourth round, breaking through for the first time at a slam and making tennis enthusiasts take notice. In 2012, he already has a title to his name and booked his place in the third round with the four-set, nearly three-hour win. Raonic made an impressive start to 2012 by winning the ATP stop in Chennai where he beat Top 10 players Nicolas Almagro and Janko Tipsarevic on his way to his second career title. He also won in San Jose in 2011. Thursday morning he and Petzschner, the German ranked No.63, locked horns into the early afternoon. Raonic used a break in the first game of the match to secure the first set 6-4, his serve ticking along just fine, bolstered by his forehand. Raonic won the set when he served out wide to Petzschner, then clocked a forehand winner crosscourt to take the set. But Petzschner worked his way into the match in the second, frustrating the Canadian by bringing him into net and often passing him or forcing an error. Petzschner, an accomplished doubles player, used a drop volley winner to take a 2-1 lead. “I was struggling a little bit, I don’t know why,” Raonic said. “He started well and just put a lot more pressure on me.” It was in the tenth game of the second set that Petzschner was really able to put pressure on the Raonic serve. He held three set points at 0-40 only to watch Raonic rocket three service winners at him. At 5-6, however, Raonic made a series of errors, including a backhand long when Petzschner rushed the net, giving the 27-year-old German the set, 7-5.

Petzschner fought off a break point in the fifth game of the fourth set before Raonic had to dig out of another 0-40 hole in game eight. The seeded player looked destined to close out the match when he broke in the next game, running down a drop shot to flick a spectacular crosscourt winner before forcing Petzschner into a half-volley error. But Raonic couldn’t serve it out at 5-4 in the fourth, needing to break Petzschner for the second time in as many games and the fifth time in the match in game 12. He won the tie just short of the three-hour mark when Petzschner batted a forehand long. “I know he can play really well,” Raonic explained. “My goal was really just to stick with him [until] I get my opportunities.” Raonic’s big serve provided plenty of opportunities, clocking at 225 KMH at one point in the match. Raonic bashed 15 aces to Petzschner’s 10. The two men seemingly traded stats: Raonic hit 43 winners to Petzschner’s 43 unforced errors. The German hit 37 winners to Raonic’s 38 unforced errors.

He is a name that many are keeping their eye on after he raced through the Chennai draw and seemed to have a special place in his heart for the courts at Melbourne. Counting his wins in qualifying he is 8-1 over the last two years here. But Raonic’s early success in 2011 wasn’t for nothing. He was named the tour’s Newcomer of the Year and reaching a career-high ranking of No.25 after starting the year No.152.

 

 

 

 

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