ATP

Bautista Agut gains revenge on Medvedev in Mallorca, Norrie bows out in Eastbourne

By Sports Desk June 23, 2022

Top seed Daniil Medvedev crashed out of the Mallorca Championships following a straight-sets defeat by Roberto Bautista Agut in the quarter-finals.

Reigning champion Medvedev was a commanding winner when he locked horns with Bautista Agut in Halle last week.

But the Spaniard gained revenge this time around, prevailing 6-3 6-2 for his fourth victory in five meetings with the world number one.

"I had to play very good to beat Daniil," said the former Wimbledon semi-finalist. "He’s the number one; the last champion here in Mallorca. He just beat me a few days ago.

"I played a really compete match. I was more convinced with my game, hitting strong, very solid. I think I did a really good match."

Next up for the Doha champion is Antoine Bellier after the Swiss qualifier came from behind to defeat Dutchman Tallon Griekspoor 5-7 7-6 (7-5) 6-2.

Elsewhere, Stefanos Tsitsipas is through to his first tour-level semi-final on grass after eventually seeing off Marcos Giron 7-6 (7-5) 4-6 6-3.

The former Roland Garros runner-up, who hit 13 aces, claimed the crucial break in game eight of the deciding set to extend his record tally of wins for the campaign to 38.

The world number six will play Benjamin Bonzi in the last four after the Frenchman overcame Daniel Altmaier 6-3 6-4.

Meanwhile, Cameron Norrie was beaten in the quarter-finals of the Eastbourne International, the top seed going down 7-5 7-5 against Maxime Cressy.

The debutant hit 10 aces and won 80 per cent of points on his first serve to advance to a second tour-level semi-final of the season.

There, he will play Jack Draper, who built on his victory over Diego Schwartzman by downing compatriot Ryan Peniston 6-3 6-3 to seal his maiden ATP semi-final appearance.

Reigning champion Alex De Minaur overcame Tommy Paul 6-2 4-6 6-4 to set up a clash with 2019 winner Taylor Fritz, who claimed his seventh successive victory at Eastbourne after seeing off Alexander Bublik 6-3 6-2 in just 67 minutes.

Related items

  • Wimbledon: Rybakina roars into first slam final with stunning upset of Halep Wimbledon: Rybakina roars into first slam final with stunning upset of Halep

    Elena Rybakina overpowered former Wimbledon champion Simona Halep 6-3 6-3 in the last four on Thursday to reach her first major final at the All England Club.

    Rybakina is playing in the main draw in SW19 for only the second time, having debuted in 2021.

    Yet the Kazakh looks every bit as accomplished on the London grass as the esteemed Halep, who had not lost at Wimbledon since 2018, taking the title in 2019.

    Indeed, the Romanian met her match in Rybakina, who forged nine break point opportunities in a dominant display, aided by a flawless serve as Halep gave up a costly nine double-faults.

    Despite being one of the game's great returners, Halep found herself on the back foot right from the outset.

    She faced break points in each of her four service games in the opener, with a rampant Rybakina decisively seizing the first of them as she dictated play from the back of the court.

    Rybakina's power continued to cause problems for Halep, although a trio of double-faults – including to both set up and secure the break point – were to blame as the first-time semi-finalist was gifted an early lead again in the second set.

    That advantage was cancelled out in similarly generous fashion, with four straight unforced errors seeing Rybakina unexpectedly broken to love.

    However, normal service was swiftly resumed as Rybakina won a sublime rally to tee up another break, and there was time for one final flourish as a sensational return from the 23-year-old left Halep rooted and wrapped up victory in 77 minutes.

    Data slam: Simona's semi-final struggles

    Losing at Wimbledon may have been an unfamiliar feeling for Halep after 12 straight wins at the tournament, including 10 in straight sets, but she is becoming all too accustomed to failing in the last four.

    Excluding walkovers, this was the Romanian's fourth consecutive semi-final defeat. For Rybakina, it was a first win at this stage of any tournament on grass.

    WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS

    Rybakina – 13/16
    Halep – 16/15

    ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS

    Rybakina – 5/0
    Halep – 0/9

    BREAK POINTS WON

    Rybakina – 3/9
    Halep – 1/1

  • Tour de France: 'Every time I win it's even better than before' – Pogacar revels in stage six triumph after claiming yellow jersey Tour de France: 'Every time I win it's even better than before' – Pogacar revels in stage six triumph after claiming yellow jersey

    Tadej Pogacar declared each of his victories feels better than the last after claiming the yellow jersey with a thrilling win over stage six of the Tour de France, stepping up his bid for a third consecutive triumph in the race.

    The 23-year-old attacked at the tail end of the climb into Longwy, accelerating away from the peloton to finish ahead of Michael Matthews and David Gaudu and snatch the overall lead from Wout van Aert.

    Van Aert did not give up the yellow jersey without a fight, at one stage looking set for an extraordinary solo victory after breaking clear to establish a sizeable lead with 25 kilometres remaining. 

    But the Belgian was eventually reeled in by a much-reduced peloton 11km from the finish, with Pogacar's lung-busting late effort allowing him to see off Matthews, Gaudu and the rest of the pack, clinching victory on the race's longest stage. 

    With bonus seconds applied, Pogacar now boasts a four-second overall lead over Neilson Powless, and the Slovenian expressed his delight after sealing a victory which looked unlikely for much of the stage.

    "Every time I win it's even better than before," he beamed after crossing the line. "It was such a hard day from the start. The first two hours were so crazy.

    "The strongest guy was in the break. Many teams were pulling the peloton strongly, our team did it as well. In the end, the peloton was stronger [than Van Aert], but we were not sure to catch him.

    "I was feeling good. My team did an incredibly good job to put me in a perfect position. It was not a pure sprint after we rode the last two climbs above threshold.

    "I guess I had good legs to push in the end. I don't mind taking the yellow jersey, but I'm above all happy to take the stage win. Everything else is bonus."

    Pogacar remains the man to beat

    Pogacar began this year's edition of the Tour looking to become just the second rider to triumph on each of his first three appearances in the race (after Eddy Merckx won on each of his first five outings between 1969 and 1974).

    While he had to remain patient after Van Aert accelerated away in the early stages here, his triumph – the fifth stage win at the Tour of his career – demonstrated he remains the rider to beat.

    STAGE RESULTS

    1. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) 4:27:13
    2. Michael Matthews (BikeExchange-Jayco) same time
    3. David Gaudu (Groupama-FDJ)
    4. Tom Pidcock (Ineos Grenadiers)
    5. Nairo Quintana (Arkea Samsic) 

    CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS 

    General Classification

    1. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) 20:44:44
    2. Neilson Powless (EF Education-EasyPost) +0:04
    3. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) +0:31

    Points Classification

    1. Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) 198
    2. Fabio Jakobsen (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) 137
    3. Jasper Philipsen (Alpecin-Deceuninck) 89

    King of the Mountains

    1. Magnus Cort Nielsen (EF Education-EasyPost) 11
    2. Alexis Vuillermoz (TotalEnergies) 2
    3. Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) 2

  • Wimbledon: 'I'm a proud Tunisian woman standing here' – Jabeur makes African grand slam breakthrough Wimbledon: 'I'm a proud Tunisian woman standing here' – Jabeur makes African grand slam breakthrough

    Ons Jabeur was brimming with pride at becoming Africa's first grand slam women's singles finalist after sinking the Wimbledon title hopes of shock merchant Tatjana Maria.

    Jabeur was determined to share the glory with Maria, hauling her close friend and "barbecue buddy" back into the middle of Centre Court for an ovation at the end of Thursday's semi-final battle.

    The German mother-of-two's lifetime-best grand slam performance had included wins over seeds Sorana Cirstea, Maria Sakkari and Jelena Ostapenko, but the world number 103 fell in three sets to world number two Jabeur.

    Jabeur has already made history but now has the title firmly in her sights ahead of Saturday's showpiece match.

    "It's a dream coming true, from years and years of work and sacrifice," she said. "I'm really happy it's paying off, and I continue for one more match now. I'm a proud Tunisian woman standing here today, and I know in Tunisia they're going crazy right now."

    The last African to win a grand slam of any sort was Cara Black of Zimbabwe at Wimbledon in 2010, when she and Leander Paes took the mixed doubles title.

    Singles is where the spotlight typically falls in tennis, though, and Jabeur is one step away from glory. Only top-ranked Iga Swiatek, with 46 wins, has earned more match victories than Jabeur at WTA Tour level this season.

    Taking this season and 2021 into account, Jabeur has more wins than anyone, her haul of 84 singles successes putting her two ahead of Swiatek.

    Should the final go to a third and deciding set, Jabeur's record in tight matches could help. She has won 13 contests that have gone the distance this season, more than any other woman.

    Maria made her work for the semi-final win, with Jabeur saying it was not so much the friendship that made the task so challenging.

    "I think it was more difficult running for her balls," Jabeur said. "She killed me, and she has to make me a barbecue now to make up for all the running that I did on the court.

    "I definitely wanted to share the moment with her at the end because she's such an inspiration for so many players, including me, coming back after having two babies, I still can't believe how she did it."

© 2022 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.