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Sunday Briefing - Rotterdam, Sao Paulo, San Jose

Federer© Henk KosterRoger Federer is chasing his 71st tour-level title.

ROTTERDAM SUNDAY PREVIEW - FEDERER & DEL POTRO SQUARE OFF IN CHAMPIONSHIP
• Two of the seven active Grand Slam champions - Roger Federer and Juan Martin del Potro - will play Sunday in the final of the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament, an ATP World Tour 500 event
• Federer was nearly out in the semi-finals, rallying from 64 31 down to beat Nikolay Davydenko, 46 63 64
• del Potro snapped a four-match losing streak against Top 10 players in his semi-final match, beating World No. 7 Tomas Berdych (and handily too, 63 61); the Argentine said afterwards, “I’m very happy as it’s my first victory against a Top 10 player this year. It means a lot for my confidence.”
• This is del Potro’s biggest final since returning from his wrist injury lay-off at the end of 2010 (his three finals since then have all come at ATP World Tour 250-level events, going 2-1 in those)
• del Potro was an impressive 6-7 against Top 3 players during his career-best season in 2009, but since the injury he is only 1-6 against Top 3 players (and the win was via retirement over Novak Djokovic last year)
• Federer leads the series, 8-2, but since del Potro returned from his injury-marred 2010, Federer has won both meetings in straight sets (including 64 63 62 win at this year’s Australian Open)

WHAT’S AT STAKE
Winner €290,550 and 500 South African Airways ATP Ranking points
Runner-up €131,000 and 300 South African Airways ATP Ranking points

FINALS HISTORY
Federer Appearing in his 101st career ATP World Tour level final.,....70-30 in finals (0-0 in 2012)
del Potro Appearing in his 14th career ATP World Tour level final…….9-4 in finals (0-0 in 2012)

ROAD TO THE FINAL

(1) Roger Federer (SUI #3)
1st Rd d. Nicolas Mahut (FRA #83) 64 64 (1:07)
2nd Rd d. Mikhail Youzhny (RUS #31) w/o
QF d. Jarkko Nieminen (FIN #46) 75 76(2) (1:30)
SF d. Nikolay Davydenko (RUS #49) 46 63 64 (2:15)

(3) Juan Martin del Potro (ARG #10)
1st Rd d. Michael Llodra (FRA #47) 64 67(3) 64 (2:26)
2nd Rd d. (Q) Karol Beck (SVK # 105) 64 75 (1:49)
QF d. (7) Viktor Troicki (SRB #24) 60 61 (1:01)
SF d. (2) Tomas Berdych (CZE #7) 63 61 (1:15)

OPEN ERA CAREER TITLE LEADERS
                             No.
1)Jimmy Connors   109
2) Ivan Lendl          94
3) John McEnroe     77
4) Roger Federer     70
5) Pete Sampras      64
Bjorn Borg              64

Sunday Championship FedEx ATP Head 2 Heads

(1)Roger Federer (SUI) vs (3) Juan Martin del Potro (ARG) Federer Leads 8-2
07 Wimbledon (Great Britain) Grass R64 Roger Federer 6-2 7-5 6-1
07 Basel (Switzerland) Hard (I) R16 Roger Federer 6-1 6-4
08 ATP Masters Series Madrid (Spain) Hard (I) QF Roger Federer 6-3 6-3
09 Australian Open (Australia) Hard QF Roger Federer 6-3 6-0 6-0
09 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 Madrid Clay SF Roger Federer 6-3 6-4
09 Roland Garros (France) Clay SF Roger Federer 3-6 7-6(2) 2-6 6-1 6-4
09 US Open (U.S.A.) Hard F Juan Martin Del Potro 3-6 7-6(5) 4-6 7-6(4) 6-2
09 Barclays ATP World Tour Finals Hard (I) RR Juan Martin Del Potro 6-2 6-7(5) 6-3
11 ATP World Masters 1000 Cincinnati Hard R32 Roger Federer 6-3 7-5
12 Australian Open (Australia) Hard QF Roger Federer 6-4 6-3 6-2

Federer FastFacts:
2012 Highlights:
SF: Doha (W/O vs Tsonga); Australian Open (l Nadal)
YTD W-L: 10-2
YTD Titles: 0
Career Titles: 70
Date of Birth: August 8, 1981
South African Airways ATP Ranking: 3

• Federer is playing in his first ATP World Tour final of the year (withdrew prior to Doha SFs w/back injury last month) and the 101st of his career (70-30 record)
• Looking to extend his streak to 12 consecutive years with at least one ATP World Tour title
• He is coming off back-to-back losses in Australian Open SFs (Nadal) and Davis Cup (Isner); last time losing two straight matches was spring 2010 (to Berdych in Miami 4th Rd. then to Gulbis in Rome opener)
• This is his seventh appearance at Rotterdam but first since 2005 (20-5 record; has never lost before QFs - champion in 2005, finishing runner-up in 2001, plus one-time semi-finalist and three-time quarterfinalist)
• Leads the tournament in second serve pts. won (64%) and is No. 2 service games won (35 of 37, 95%)

del Potro FastFacts:
2012 Highlights:
QF: Sydney (l Baghdatis); Australian Open (l Federer)
YTD W-L: 9-2
YTD Titles: 0/Career Titles: 9
Date of Birth: September 23, 1988
South African Airways 2012 ATP Ranking: 10

• del Potro is playing in his first final of the year (previous-best results: QFs at Sydney and Australian Open)
• The Argentine No. 1 returned to Top 10 after Australian Open (first time since wrist injury lay-off in 2010)
• He is making his first appearance in Rotterdam (4-0 record)
• Leads the tournament this week in aces (30) and service games won (39 of 41, 95%) while breaking opponents 16 times in 42 games (38%)
•The Tandil native is appearing in his 14th ATP World Tour level final (9-4 career record, 0-2 indoors)

DOUBLES FINAL - (2) Llodra/Zimonjic (FRA/SRB) vs. (3) Lindstedt/Tecau (SWE/ROU)
• No. 2 seeds Michael Llodra and Nenad Zimonjic haven’t faced another seeded team en route to the final (and they have only dropped one set, beating Berdych/Kubot in the first round, 63 36 107)
• Llodra and Zimonjic are playing in their ninth ATP World Tour doubles final together (4-4 career mark)
Robert Lindstedt and Horia Tecau, the No. 3 seeds, haven’t faced another seeded team either this week (and they have also dropped one set, beating del Potro/Petzschner in the quarter-finals, 64 16 108)
• Lindstedt and Tecau are playing their 13th ATP World Tour doubles final together (6-6 record)
• ATP World Tour doubles final W-L: Llodra (22-20), Zimonjic (43-29), Lindstedt (12-13), Tecau (9-8)
• The only one of the four doubles finalists to have won this title is Zimonjic (2009 and 2010 w/Nestor)  

SAO PAULO SUNDAY PREVIEW – REIGNING CHAMP ALMAGRO TO MEET VOLANDRI FOR 10TH TIME
• The championship of the Brasil Open features top seed and defending champion Nicolas Almagro of Spain against Italian clay court veteran Filippo Volandri. Almagro has won six of the previous nine meetings (three in a row), all on clay, and this is their first encounter in an ATP World Tour final.
• Almagro has an 18-4 career tournament record and he’s looking for his third Brazilian title. He won the crown in Costa do Sauipe in  2008 and last year. The 26-year-old Spaniard has a 10-4 career mark in finals. Last year he won a career-high three titles and finished in the Top 10 for the first time at No. 10.
• The 30-year-old Volandri is appearing in his ninth career ATP World Tour final (2-6), the first since Oct. 1, 2006 when he captured his second title in Palermo.

WHAT’S AT STAKE
Winner     $85,800 and 250 South African Airways ATP Ranking points
Runner-up  $45,190 and 150 South African Airways ATP Ranking points

FINALS HISTORY
Almagro Appearing in his 15th career ATP World Tour final……10-4 in finals (0-0 in 2012)
Volandri Appearing in his 9th career ATP World Tour final……..2-6 in finals (0-0 in 2012)

ROAD TO THE FINAL
(1) Nicolas Almagro (ESP #11)
1st Rd Bye
2nd Rd d. Victor Hanescu (ROM #93) 63 67(4) 63
QF d. No. 5 Carlos Berlocq (ARG #42) 63 62
SF d. No. 8 Albert Ramos (ESP #64) 64 76(4)

Filippo Volandri (ITA # 69)
1st Rd d. No. 7 Albert Montanes (ESP #51) 62 63
2nd Rd  d. (Q) Ruben Ramirez-Hidalgo (ESP #128) 64 16 63
QF d. David Nalbandian (ARG #75) 36 63 75
SF d. No. 4 Thomaz Bellucci (BRA #38) 57 60 62

Sunday Championship FedEx ATP Head 2 Heads –

Centre Court

(1-WC) Nicolas Almagro (ESP) vs Filippo Volandri (ITA) Almagro Leads 6-3
05 ATP Masters Series Hamburg  Clay R64 Filippo Volandri 6-3 6-2
06 Valencia (Spain) Clay QF Nicolas Almagro 6-4 6-1
06 Palermo (Italy) Clay SF Filippo Volandri 6-0 2-1 ret
07 Valencia (Spain) Clay QF Nicolas Almagro 6-3 1-0
07 Barcelona (Spain) Clay R32 Filippo Volandri 6-7(5) 6-4 6-1
08 Costa do Sauipe (Brazil) Clay QF Nicolas Almagro 7-5 2-6 6-1
08 Acapulco (Mexico) Clay R16 Nicolas Almagro 6-3 6-3
08 Barcelona (Spain) Clay R32 Nicolas Almagro 6-4 7-6(5)
11 Acapulco (Mexico) Clay R16 Nicolas Almagro 6-2 6-2

Almagro FastFacts:
2012 Highlights:
SF: Chennai (l Raonic); QF: Auckland (l Kohlschreiber)
YTD W-L: 10-3
YTD Titles: 0
Career Titles: 10
Date of Birth: August 21, 1985
South African Airways ATP Ranking: 11

• Almagro has only been broken once (35 of 36 games held, 97%) in the tournament in his first three matches  • The Spaniard is appearing in his first ATP World Tour final of the season and he enters with a 10-3 match record…His best result was the semi-finals in Chennai in the opening week of the season
• This is the Spaniard’s seventh appearance in Brazil and he owns an 18-4 record, winning titles in 2008  (d. Moya) and last year (d. Dolgopolov)
• All 10 of his career ATP World Tour titles have come on clay, including a career-best three last season…He is 10-4 lifetime in finals
 
Volandri FastFacts:
2012 Highlights:
YTD W-L: 4-4
YTD Titles: 0
Career Titles: 2
Date of Birth: September 5, 1981
South African Airways ATP Ranking: 69

• Volandri has a 2-6 career mark in ATP World Tour finals (all on clay) and his last final/title came in Palermo on Oct. 1, 2006 (d. Lapentti) 
• He came into Brazil winless this season (0-4) before winning a pair of matches over Spaniards, No. 7 Albert Montanes (62 63) and qualifier Ruben Ramirez-Hidalgo 64 16 63, and then over former World No. 3 David Nalbandian 36 63 75 in the quarter-finals and No. 4 seed Thomaz Bellucci 57 60 62 in the semi-finals
• Has held serve 42 of 50 service games (84%) and won 16 of 49 return games (33%) this week
• This is the Italian’s eighth tournament appearance and owns a 9-7 career record, reaching the final for the first time…His previous best was the quarter-finals in 2008

DOUBLES FINAL - (1) Butorac/Soares (USA/BRA) vs. (4) Mertinak/Sa (SVK/BRA)
• Top seeds Eric Butorac of the U.S. and Bruno Soares of Brazil take on No. 4 seeds Michal Mertinak of Slovakia and Andre Sa of Brazil. Both teams are playing in their first final together.
• Butorac is looking to win an ATP World Tour doubles title for the sixth consecutive year. He is 12-5 lifetime in finals. Soares, who won the title in Costa do Sauipe last year (w/Melo), is 5-8 in career finals.
• Mertinak is 12-5 lifetime in ATP World Tour finals and Sa is 7-11 in career finals.

SAN JOSE SUNDAY PREVIEW –  RAONIC LOOKS TO DEFEND TITLE AGAINST ISTOMIN 
• The SAP Open championship on Sunday at the HP Pavilion at San Jose features defending champion and No. 3 seed Milos Raonic of Canada against unseeded Denis Istomin of Uzbekistan in a first-time meeting. Raonic is trying to become the first two-time winner on the ATP World Tour this season.
• Raonic is appearing in his fourth career ATP World Tour final (2-1) while Istomin is making his second showing in an ATP World Tour title match (0-1). Istomin is attempting to become the first player to win his maiden ATP World Tour title this year.
• Raonic is trying to become the first player to win back-to-back titles here since Andy Murray in 2006-07 while Istomin is looking to become the fifth player in the Open Era to win his first ATP title in Bay Area.

WHAT’S AT STAKE –
 Winner:  $95,860 and 250 South African Airways ATP Ranking points
 Runner-up: $50,485 and 150 South African Airways ATP Ranking points

FINALS HISTORY –
Raonic   Appearing in his 4th career ATP World Tour final…………..He is 2-1 in finals (1-0 in 2012)
Istomin Appearing in his 2nd career ATP World Tour final………….He is 0-1 in finals (0-0 in 2012)

ROAD TO THE FINAL
(3) Milos Raonic (CAN #32)
1st Rd Bye
2nd Rd d. Tobias Kamke (GER #89)   62 76(7)
QF d. No. 6 Kevin Anderson (RSA #35)  75 76(3)
SF d. Ryan Harrison (USA  #94)   76(4) 62

Denis Istomin (UZB # 61)
1st Rd d. Sam Querrey (USA, #85)   57 63 75
2nd Rd  d. Michael Russell (USA #104)   62 62
QF d. No. 2 Andy Roddick (USA  #17) 62 64
SF d. No. 5 Julien Benneteau (FRA #34)  63 67(4) 63

BACK-TO-BACK WINNERS – Raonic is trying to become the seventh player in the Open Era (since 1968) to win back-to-back titles in the Bay Area tournament:
   Years  
Andy Murray  2006-07
Andy Roddick   2004-05
Mark Philippoussis 1999-2000
Pete Sampras   1996-97
John McEnroe  1978-79
Stan Smith  1968-69

FIRST-TIME WINNERS – Istomin is attempting to become the fifth player to win his first career ATP World Tour title in the Open Era at this tournament:
                             Year
Milos Raonic (CAN) 2011
Andy Murray (GBR) 2006
Renzo Furlan (ITA) 1994
Michael Chang (USA) 1988
 
Sunday Championship FedEx ATP Head 2 Heads

(3) Milos Raonic (CAN) vs Denis Istomin (UZB) First Meeting

Raonic FastFacts:
2012 Highlights:
W: Chennai (d Tipsarevic)
YTD W-L: 10-1
YTD Titles: 1/Career Titles: 2
Date of Birth: December 27, 1990  South African Airways ATP Ranking: 32

• Raonic comes into his second ATP World Tour final of the season with a 10-1 match record and the defending champion is 7-0 lifetime in San Jose (not dropping a set)…Also 7-0 lifetime in tie-breaks here
…In his seven matches here, has held serve 73 of 75 games and fired 112 aces (16.1 avg per match)
• He is appearing in his fourth career ATP World Tour final (2-1)…Besides his two titles, he was runner-up in Memphis (l. to Roddick in three sets)
• He leads the tournament in aces (54) and second serve pts. won (63%) and is No. 2 service games won (31 of 32 held) and first serve points won (85%)
• He opened the season by capturing his second career ATP World Tour title without losing his serve in 48 games, defeating No. 10 Almagro in the semi-finals and No. 9 Tipsarevic in the final (in three TBs)
• His only loss this season came to Aussie Lleyton Hewitt in the third round at the Australian Open
• Last weekend played in first round Davis Cup tie in Vancouver vs. France and defeated Julien Benneteau and lost in doubles rubber…Withdrew from reverse singles on Sunday due to knee pain

Istomin FastFacts:
2012 Highlights:
SF: Sydney (l Nieminen); QF: Brisbane (l Tomic)
YTD W-L: 9-3
YTD Titles: 0
Career Titles: 0
Date of Birth: September 7, 1986
South African Airways ATP Ranking: 61

• Istomin is appearing in his second career ATP World Tour final, the first since August 2010 when he reached the title match in New Haven (l. to Stakhovsky)…He is attempting to become the first Uzbekistan man to win an ATP World Tour title
• Has a 9-2 career mark in San Jose, reaching the semi-finals two years ago and the quarter-finals last year (l. to Verdasco both times)…Has held serve 46 of 50 games (92%), saving 15 of 19 break pts.
• The top player from Uzbekistan comes in with a 9-3 match record on the season and last month he reached the quarter-finals in Sydney (l. to Tomic), the semi-finals in Sydney (l. to Nieminen) and fell in the first round at the Australian Open (l. to No. 6 Tsonga in four sets)…Last year finished with a 12-22
match record and didn’t win his ninth match until week of July 25 (10th win came week of Aug. 22)
• His win over No. 17 Andy Roddick on Friday was his second over a Top 20 opponent this year…In Sydney, defeated No. 18 Richard Gasquet in QFs…Prior to that, his last Top 20 victory came over No. 18 Nicolas Almagro in the second round of Hamburg in July 2010
• Will climb from No. 61 to around No. 50 by reaching the final and to around No. 40 if he wins the title…
He reached a career-high No. 39 on Aug. 30, 2010 (after New Haven final)…Finished No. 40 that year and became first player from Uzbekistan to finish in Top 50

DOUBLES FINAL - (4) Knowles/Malisse (BAH/BEL) vs.  Anderson/Moser (RSA/GER)
• No. 4 seeds Mark Knowles of the Bahamas and Xavier Malisse of Belgium take on the first-time duo of unseeded Kevin Anderson of South Africa and Frank Moser of Germany.
 • Knowles and Malisse are playing in their sixth career tournament together and they made their debut last summer in Los Angeles where they won the title. They have a 10-4 match record together.
 • Knowles is appearing in his 99th career doubles final on the ATP World Tour (54-44) and he’s trying to extend his streak of winning a title to 13 straight years (since 2000). He’s won a title from 1993-2011 (except 1999).
• Malisse is 6-2 in career finals and this is his fourth straight doubles final in California. He was runner-up at last year’s SAP Open (w/Falla) and he then won titles at the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 in Indian Wells in March and Los Angeles in July.
• Anderson and Moser have not dropped a set en route to the final, taking out the No. 3 seeds Hanley-Murray in the quarter-finals and No. 2 seeds/defending champions Lipsky-Ram in the semi-finals.
• Both players are attempting to capture their first ATP World Tour title. Anderson is making his doubles final debut while Moser is appearing in his third final (2009 Los Angeles, 2011 Atlanta).

 

 

 

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