Nikoloz Basilashvili emerged victorious after a three-set battle with Andrey Rublev to successfully defend his title at the German Tennis Championships.

The reigning champion claimed his 12th straight win in Hamburg 7-5 4-6 6-3, having also needed to come through a decider to beat Leonardo Mayer in the 2018 final.

Basilashvili, who is the first player to win the event in successive years since Roger Federer in 2004-2005, had survived a scare on Saturday, saving two match points in his semi-final against Alexander Zverev. 

The Georgian suffered a sluggish start 24 hours later against Rublev, though he rallied after losing his serve in the third game to take the opening set.

Rublev did not make the same mistake in the second when a break put him 4-3 up, holding on to his advantage this time before sealing the set when his opponent committed successive forehand errors.

Basilashvili would not be denied, however, crucially breaking in the fourth game of set three as he clinched a hard-fought victory after two hours and seven minutes on court.

Alex de Minaur and Taylor Fritz will meet in the Atlanta Open final after three-set wins on Saturday.

De Minaur battled past Reilly Opelka 7-6 (7-4) 6-7 (5-7) 6-3 in their semi-final at the ATP 250 tournament.

Opelka served 28 aces, but De Minaur – the third seed – managed to break twice in the final set, with the American only able to win four return points.

De Minaur, 20, moved into his fourth ATP Tour final and second of the year, the Australian eyeing his second title when he faces Fritz in the decider.

Fritz was also tested before getting past Cameron Norrie 6-1 3-6 6-3 on the back of 15 aces.

The American second seed, 21, is into his third ATP Tour decider as he looks to add to the title he won at Eastbourne last month.

Alex de Minaur advanced to the Atlanta Open semi-finals, while fellow seed Taylor Fritz also progressed on Friday.

De Minaur benefited from a retirement against fellow Australian Bernard Tomic as he set up a clash with Reilly Opelka.

Third seed De Minaur was leading 6-2 3-0 when Tomic retired due to a hand injury at the ATP 250 tournament in Georgia.

"The less time you can spend on court is always to your advantage. It's going to be hopefully some hot, humid weather, which I was expecting coming into this week," De Minaur said. "I'm happy to be where I am and now onto the next [match]."

Next up for De Minaur is Opelka, who reached his second Atlanta semi after outlasting Daniel Evans 7-6 (7-3) 7-5.

American second seed Fritz, meanwhile, saw off Miomir Kecmanovic 6-1 7-6 (7-1) thanks to 11 aces and no break points faced.

Cameron Norrie awaits Fritz after the Brit overcame Alexei Popyrin 7-5 6-4.

Alexander Zverev stormed back to beat Filip Krajinovic and reach the German Tennis Championships semi-finals after splitting with coach Ivan Lendl, while Andrey Rublev claimed the scalp of Dominic Thiem.

Zverev and Lendl have parted ways less than a year after starting their collaboration ahead of the US Open.

The German could start the post-Lendl era with a second ATP Tour singles title of the season, having come from a set and a break down to beat Krajinovic 2-6 7-5 6-2 in his homeland on Friday.

Krajinovic served for the match at 5-3 up in the second set, but Zverev showed great resistance to pull himself off the ropes, winning four games in a row to level the match before largely dominating the decider.

Second seed Zverev will take on defending champion Nikoloz Basilashvili in the last four after the fourth seed beat Jeremy Chardy 6-2 6-3 in Hamburg.

Former World No. 1 Ivan Lendl and Alexander Zverev have parted company after a partnership that included a run to the 2018 #NittoATPFinals. #ATP

— ATP Tour (@ATP_Tour) July 26, 2019

Top seed Thiem's titles hopes were ended with a 7-6 (7-3) 7-6 (7-5) loss to 21-year-old Russian Rublev, who will face Pablo Carreno Busta - a 3-6 6-2 7-6 (7-4) conqueror of Fabio Fognini.

Carreno Busta's fellow Spaniard Roberto Bautista Agut was knocked out of the Swiss Open Gstaad by Joao Sousa, a 4-6 6-3 7-5 quarter-final winner.

Pablo Andujar and Albert Ramos Vinolas continue to fly the flag for Spain in Switzerland, though, and will meet at the semi-final stage following defeats of Dusan Lajovic and Roberto Carballes Baena respectively.

Bernard Tomic reached his second quarter-final of the year, while Alex de Minaur and Taylor Fritz are also into the last eight at the Atlanta Open.

Tomic, who has struggled in 2019, overcame fellow Australian Matthew Ebden 6-4 7-6 (7-3) at the ATP 250 event on Thursday.

A former top-20 player, Tomic is set to return to the top 100 after his run in Georgia.

He served 12 aces against Ebden, who struggled with his serve, finishing with 10 double faults.

Tomic will meet De Minaur in an all-Australian quarter-final after the third seed brushed past Bradley Klahn 6-4 6-4.

Fritz, the second seed, was too good for qualifier Kevin King 6-2 6-3.

The American will meet Miomir Kecmanovic, who upset eighth seed Ugo Humbert 6-2 6-2.

World number one Novak Djokovic has withdrawn from the Rogers Cup, opting for further rest after winning Wimbledon.

Djokovic, 32, claimed his 16th grand slam title and fifth Wimbledon crown with a thrilling win over Roger Federer in the final at the All England Club on July 14.

But, like the Swiss great, the Serbian star has decided not to compete at the Rogers Cup in Montreal beginning on August 5.

"I'm sorry to announce that I decided to pull out of Rogers Cup," four-time champion Djokovic said in a statement on Thursday.

"With the support of my team, I have decided to give my body longer rest and recovery time before coming back again to play.

"I love Canada and I have many friends there that always make me feel like I'm at home and I'm looking forward to coming back again to play in front of all of you in Montreal."

World number 12 Juan Martin del Potro has also withdrawn after undergoing surgery on his knee, having fractured his right kneecap at Queen's last month.

The withdrawals open up the tournament for defending champion Rafael Nadal, who will be eyeing a fifth Rogers Cup title.

Alexander Zverev made home advantage count as he battled through to the quarter-finals of the German Tennis Championships with a straight-sets win over Federico Delbonis.

After a shock first-round exit at Wimbledon, world number five Zverev - featuring in the tournament in his hometown for the first time since 2016 - has rediscovered his form on clay. 

He had to overcome a resilient opponent in Delbonis in humid conditions on Thursday, coming out on top 6-4 7-6 (7-2) to join world number four and top seed Dominic Thiem in the last eight.

Zverev will face Filip Krajinovic next, with the Serbian having beat 2016 champion Martin Klizan 6-7 (6-8) 7-5 6-1. 

Seventh seed Jan-Lennard Struff suffered a surprise defeat to Pablo Carreno Busta, who will meet Fabio Fognini next after the Italian beat Rudolf Molleker 7-5 6-4.

Meanwhile, the seeded players also dominated in the Swiss Open Gstaad - Roberto Bautista Agut, Dusan Lajovic, Joao Sousa and Pablo Andujar all progressing to the quarter-finals.

Bautista Agut, a runner-up at the tournament last year, saw off compatriot Jaume Munar 7-6 (9-7) 6-4, while third seed Lajovic required three sets to edge past Denis Istomin.

Sousa found victory easier to come by against Gian Marco Moroni, while Andujar saw off a second-set fightback from Taro Daniel to triumph 6-1 3-6 7-6 (7-2).

John Isner's bid for a sixth Atlanta Open title came to an end in a second-round loss to Reilly Opelka on Wednesday.

The big-serving Americans were unable to break before Opelka edged a 7-6 (7-2) 6-7 (5-7) 7-6 (7-5) victory.

Top seed Isner served 33 aces and Opelka sent down 31 at the ATP 250 event played on hard-courts in Georgia.

A five-time champion and three-time runner-up at the tournament, Isner bowed out after his third loss to Opelka this year.

This year will be just the second time Isner has not reached the final in Atlanta and first since 2012.

Two-time defending champion Isner was one of three seeds to fall as Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Radu Albot also departed.

Herbert went down to Alexei Popyrin 7-5 6-3 and Albot suffered a 7-6 (7-5) 5-7 6-2 loss to Dan Evans.

In the day's other match, Cameron Norrie was too good for qualifier Kwon Soon-woo 6-3 6-4.

Dominic Thiem boosted his hopes of a third ATP title in 2019 as he swept through to the German Tennis Championships quarter-finals in Hamburg.

The Austrian top seed, who has won tournaments in Indian Wells and Barcelona this year, saw off Marton Fucsovics 7-5 6-1 to set up a quarter-final clash on Friday with Andrey Rublev.

Rublev was a 3-6 7-5 6-3 winner against Casper Ruud, while Georgian fourth seed Nikoloz Basilashvili fought his way past Juan Ignacio Londero with a 6-4 3-6 6-3 victory.

Basilashvili, the defending champion, faces Jeremy Chardy next following the Frenchman's 7-6 (7-5) 7-5 victory over compatriot Richard Gasquet.

At the Swiss Open in Gstaad on Wednesday, second seed Fernando Verdasco lost 6-4 7-6 (7-4) to fellow Spaniard Albert Ramos-Vinolas to bow out in round two.

Another Spanish player awaits Ramos-Vinolas in the quarter-finals after sixth seed Roberto Carballes Baena cruised to a 6-2 6-4 win against Stefano Travaglia.

Thomas Fabbiano and Cedrik-Marcel Stebe will also go head to head in the last eight.

Fabbiano saw off fourth seed Lorenzo Sonego 7-6 (7-2) 3-6 6-1 in an all-Italian encounter, while Stebe was a 7-6 (7-3) 4-6 6-3 victor against Jiri Vesely.

Andy Murray insisted a return to singles action remains his target after signing up for doubles duty with brother Jamie in the United States.

Former world number one Murray is easing his way back on to the ATP Tour and has limited himself to doubles activity so far, playing at Queen's Club, Eastbourne and Wimbledon.

Hip resurfacing surgery appears to have saved his career with Murray suffering no obvious ill effects and the future prospect of returning to singles action is motivating the 32-year-old Scot.

The former Wimbledon and US Open champion is not ready to jump back into individual action at this stage, however, preferring to team up with his older brother in Washington DC at the Citi Open next week.

"I'm obviously very excited to be on the court with him and to go back to Washington. It's a city I've always enjoyed visiting," Murray said in a video on his Twitter page.

"So it should be fun and I'm hoping to have a good summer over in the States, keep progressing physically and hopefully get back on the singles court soon."

Murray's return to the Citi Open comes eight months after he joked he had been "rinsed" by the tournament's director following his withdrawal from a 2018 singles quarter-final.

The US Open begins at Flushing Meadows on August 26 and there has been no indication Murray is planning to play singles at the year's final grand slam.

If he chooses to play men's doubles in New York, Jamie could be a possible partner, with Serena Williams also expressing interest in playing mixed doubles with Murray again after enjoying their Wimbledon partnership.

Andy Murray will be joined by brother Jamie on the doubles court at the Washington Open next week.

The former singles world number one made his return from hip resurfacing surgery at the Queen's Club Championships in June, winning the doubles despite suggesting earlier this year he was set to retire.

Andy Murray also featured at Wimbledon, notably teaming up with WTA Tour great Serena Williams in the mixed doubles.

And now he will step onto the court with his sibling, alongside whom he helped Great Britain win the Davis Cup in 2015.

"They called us and said Andy really wanted to come back to [Washington] DC and wanted to play doubles with his brother," tournament manager Mark Ein said, as reported by the New York Times.

"We're putting a real focus on doubles at the event - it's a terrific piece of the competition and entertainment value for fans so we were thrilled he wanted to return."

Jamie Murray won the men's doubles at the ATP 500 event last year, playing with Bruno Soares.

Grigor Dimitrov's tough year continued with a first-round loss at the Atlanta Open, while Jack Sock's return ended in defeat on Tuesday.

Dimitrov has struggled throughout 2019 and the former world number three went down to qualifier Kevin King 7-5 6-4 at the ATP 250 event.

The Bulgarian now holds an 11-12 win-loss record this year, a run that has seen him drop to 53rd in the world.

Sock, making his first appearance since January after being sidelined due to a thumb injury, was edged by Miomir Kecmanovic 7-6 (11-9) 7-6 (7-5).

There were three seeds in action, with Frances Tiafoe suffering a surprise 4-6 6-3 7-6 (7-4) loss to Bernard Tomic.

Radu Albot, however, avoided an upset defeat, getting past Tennys Sandgren 6-4 7-6 (7-4), and Ugo Humbert was too good for Cole Gromley 7-6 (7-2) 6-2.

Reilly Opelka sent down 17 aces in a 6-3 7-6 (7-1) victory over Alexander Bublik and Daniel Evans thrashed Jason Jung 6-1 6-1 inside an hour.

Matthew Ebden overcame Kamil Majchrzak 7-6 (7-5) 6-3 and qualifier Kwon Soon-woo edged Prajnesh Gunneswaran 6-7 (4-7) 7-5 6-0.

Dominic Thiem and Alexander Zverev each bounced back from first-round exits at Wimbledon with victories at the German Tennis Championships on Tuesday.

Thiem and Zvervev lost to Sam Querrey and Jiri Vesely respectively at SW19 but rediscovered their form on the clay in Hamburg.

French Open finalist Thiem racked up the 250th ATP match win of his career by seeing off Pablo Cuevas 6-3 7-6 (7-3), while Zverev got the better of Swedish Open champion Nicolas Jarry.

Jarry's win in Bastad marked his first career ATP singles title, having lost to Zverev in the final of the Geneva Open in May, but he could not avoid a repeat of the result from two months ago as the German prevailed 6-4 6-2.

Next up for Zverev is Federico Delbonis, who lost to Jarry in the semi-finals last week but came from a set down to see off Marco Cecchinato in two hours and 36 minutes in his first-round encounter.

Third seed Fabio Fognini beat qualifier Julian Lenz, fourth seed Nikoloz Basilashvili was a straight-sets winner over Hugo Dellien and seventh seed Jan-Lennard Struff defeated Thiago Monteiro, but sixth seed Laslo Djere lost to Filip Krajinovic in two sets.

There were also wins for Richard Gasquet, Casper Ruud, Pablo Carreno Busta and Bastad finalist Juan Ignacio Londero.

Joao Sousa claimed a 6-4 6-4 win over Steve Darcis at the Swiss Open Gstaad, where Denis Istomin, Albert Ramos-Vinolas, Jaume Munar, Taro Daniel and Gian Marco Moroni were also victorious.

 

Alexei Popyrin stormed into the second round of the Atlanta Open, but fellow Australian and seventh seed Jordan Thompson crashed out.

Popyrin won almost 70 per cent of his service points as he eased past Denis Kudla 6-3 6-4 at the ATP 250 tournament on Monday.

The 19-year-old – who tallied nine aces – will face fourth seed Pierre-Hugues Herbert for a spot in the third round.

Thompson was a first-round casualty in Atlanta, where he fell 7-6 (7-3) 4-6 6-3 to Brit Cameron Norrie.

Norrie's three-set victory earned him a match against either South Korean qualifier Kwon Soon-woo or Prajnesh Gunneswaran.

Third seed Alex de Minaur awaits American Bradley Klahn, who saw off Marius Copil 7-6 (7-3) 7-5.

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