Musetti continues his Roman run

At four-all in the second set the lights went out during the Italian Open which could have disrupted the concentration of Italy’s emerging starlet, the 18-year-old Lorenzo Musetti, who was on his way to eliminating another top player from the Rome Masters listings.

ATP and WTA Kremlin Cup tournaments cancelled

The ATP and WTA jointly announced on Friday that the 2020 Kremlin Cup tournaments in Moscow have been cancelled by a mandate from health officials in the Russian capital, where there has been a surge in coronavirus infections.

Osaka withdraws from Paris, fans reduced

Japan’s Naomi Osaka has withdrawn from the upcoming French Open with a hamstring injury, while the FFT is reducing the number of fans that will be allowed to attend Roland Garros due to the worsening coronavirus situation in the country.

On the day of the Bagel 

Bagels are pretty rare in pro tennis but in Rome on Thursday, Johanna Konta and Victoria Azarenka scored three between them - Konta taking one against clay-court specialist Irina-Camelia Begu, 6-0 6-4, while just five days after losing the US Open final, Azarenka...

Battling mental health issues to return to the court

In a short film released this week, the LTA follows 38-year-old tennis player Steven McCann from North London, as he shares his inspirational story of battling addiction to reignite his love and passion for the sport. The feature brings to life Steven’s journey to...

Fans to return in Paris

No one at the beginning of this Covid year could have predicted that we here at Tennis Threads would be writing the French Open in September, just a couple of weeks after the US Open had concluded!

Fed Cup rebrands as the Billie Jean King Cup

Tying in with the 50th Anniversary of the Fed Cup, the women’s team competition has been re-named the Billie Jean King Cup by the ITF, it was announced at a virtual press conference on Thursday.

Halep and Plíšková start Rome campaigns

Top seed Simona Halep overcame an early scare as she was broken 5 times by local wildcard Jasime Paolini in her opening match of the Internazionali BNL d’Italia, but moved into the second round smoothly enough, 6-3 6-4, on Wednesday, while No 2 seed Karolina Plíšková...

Rafa and Novak back in action

The two players who have won the most Masters1000 titles between them were in action at the Rome stop for the first time having received byes in their opening matches.

Kerber falls as Muguruza kicks on in Rome

Falling victim to the quick transition from the slick fast hard courts of the US Open to the continental clay of Rome, No 15 seed Angelique Kerber was upset by Katerina Siniakova on Tuesday in straight sets, while Garbiñe Muguruza claimed the battle of Grand Slam...
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Melbourne | Nadal and Kyrgios edge closer to grudge match

It was an eventful day at the Australian Open both on and off the court, mud, for instance delayed the start of play by some four hours, the result of a deluge of ‘dirty rain’ falling on the courts overnight!

I think I can do lot of things better. But is not because of Delbonis. I can do things better because of myself. I need to play better Rafa Nadal

And then we had the sight of a fierce Rafa Nadal shot hitting a ball girl and the Spanish icon rushing over to apologise and in so doing, kissing her on the cheek leaving the youngster blushing as he returned to go on to a 6-3 7-6(4) 6-1 victory over Argentina’s Federico Delbonis and a place in the third round.

“For her it was not a good moment, I was so scared for her, the ball was quick and straight on her,” Nadal explained after the match when he also gave her his headband as a souvenir.

“She’s a super brave girl. It has been one of the more scary moments of my career. I’m very happy she is good. She is brave. Well done.”

He added on his victory: “I think I can do lot of things better. But is not because of Delbonis. I can do things better because of myself. I need to play better.

“Especially I need to convert the break points. But that’s just something that happened today. We don’t need to put a lot of attention on this.

“Just was something that is hopefully history of just one day.”

Nick Kyrgios and Gilles Simon following their second round match

Cameron Spencer/Getty Images

Nick Kyrgios who is becoming a local hero thanks to his Bushfire fund raising, was cruising at two sets up when he dropped the third set and with it, his composure. However he didn’t implode and rallied past Gilles Simon 6-2 6-4 4-6 7-5.

“I definitely lost my way a little bit… but I decided to refocus,” Kyrgios said of his mini-meltdown in the third set. “I could have gone to a very dark place in the fourth set but I put it away.”

Should both Nadal and Kyrgios get through the next round they will face each other to resume hostilities following the Aussies criticism of the Spaniard last year.

Alexander Zverev, another man who has a running feud with Kyrgios, showed signs of a return to form as he downed Egor Gerasimov 7-6(5) 6-4 7-5.

The seventh seed has acquired a new work ethic off court and it showed as he safely reached the third round.

“Definitely much better than the ATP Cup. Now in the third round, I’m very happy about that,” said the 22-year-old German.

Meanwhile fifth seed Dominic Thiem survived a fright as he was taken to five sets by Australia’s 140th-ranked Alex Bolt, but he did recover to win 6-2 5-7 6-7(5) 6-1 6-2.

“It was all of a sudden a really tight third set that shouldn’t happen. That’s why I was freaking out inside and also outside today,” said the two-time French Open finalist from Austria.

Despite an unfortunate nosebleed, Daniil Medvedev secured a 7-5 6-1 7-5 win over Spanish qualifier Pedro Martinez, while Gael Monfils, who injured his racket hand playing computer games before the tournament, downed Ivo Karlovic 4-6 7-6(8) 6-4 7-5.

Kevin Anderson, having seemingly taken control of his second round match, suffered a defeat at the hands of Taylor Fritz, the 29th seed who progressed 4-6 6-7(5) 7-6(4) 6-2 6-2.



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