Friday, October 21, 2011

Tursunov to face Tipsarevic again

  Dmitry Tursunov and Janko Tipsarevic have plenty of motivation entering today's quarterfinal matchup in the $725,000 Kremlin Cup in Moscow.
   The sixth-seeded Tursunov, a 28-year-old Sacramento-area resident, is playing in his hometown three months after his father died of pancreatic cancer at 59. When Dmitry was a child, Igor Tursunov quickly recognized his son's talent and pushed him hard to become a professional tennis player.
   The top-seeded Tipsarevic, a 27-year-old Serb, hopes to qualify for the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals and avenge a 7-6 (6), 6-7 (3), 7-5 loss to Tursunov two weeks ago in the first round at Tokyo.
   The top eight singles players of the year qualify for the ATP World Tour Finals, Nov. 20-27 in London. Tipsarevic ranks 14th in the point standings (and world rankings).
   After receiving a first-round bye in Moscow, Tipsarevic beat 2008 champion Igor Kunitsyn 6-7 (5), 6-1, 6-0 in the second round.
   "I am very motivated to do well in these last few tournaments in order to try and finish in the top 10 and maybe qualify for London," Tipsarevic said on the ATP's Web site. "I was sick in the last two weeks and had not played a match for nine days. The first match at a tournament is always tough, so I'm happy I could finish very strong."
   Tipsarevic was coming off his first ATP title, in the Malaysian Open, when he lost to Tursunov.
   "He beat me in a very tough match in Tokyo two weeks ago, so I am looking for revenge," said the 5-foot-11 Tipsarevic, who is 1-2 lifetime against Tursunov.
   Tursunov has rebounded to 40th in the world after undergoing three operations on his left ankle or foot between April 2009 and February 2010. He advanced Thursday with a 6-3, 7-6 (1) victory over Julien Benneteau of France.
   Blake vs. Nalbandian -- In a battle of former top-five players, James Blake will meet David Nalbandian today in the quarterfinals of the $825,000 Stockholm Open.
   Five years ago, Nalbandian reached No. 3 and Blake No. 4. They have dropped to No. 58 and No. 69, respectively, because of injuries and age.
   Nalbandian is a 29-year-old Argentine, and Blake, the runner-up in the $100,000 Sacramento Challenger two weeks ago, is a 31-year-old American.
   Blake is 2-0 lifetime against Nalbandian, including a 6-2, 6-4 victory in the second round at Washington, D.C., in August.
   Blake stunned second-seeded Juan Martin del Potro of Argentina 6-4, 6-4 Wednesday, and Nalbandian crushed No. 7 seed Ivan Dodig of Croatia 6-1, 6-1 Thursday.
   WTA tour in Moscow -- Second-seeded Vania King, a member of the Sacramento Capitals living in Boynton Beach, Fla., and Yaroslava Shvedova, a Moscow native who plays for Kazakhstan, reached the doubles semifinals of the Kremlin Cup when Russians Vitalia Diatchenko and Elena Vesnina retired while leading 6-4, 4-2. Diatchenko suffered a right knee injury.

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