Carlos Moya

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Posted by pompos 02/28/2009 @ 15:04

Tags : carlos moya, tennis players, tennis, sports

News headlines
Victory over Nadal restores Federer's faith - Globe and Mail
At the ATP event in Chennai, India, at the start of 2008, he beat compatriot Carlos Moya 6-7 (3), 7-6 (8), 7-6 (1) in a baseline brawl that lasted 3:55. The following day, he was in a sorry state and lost 6-0, 6-1 to Mikhail Youzhny in the final....
Lady Panthers edge Comfort - Seguin Gazette-Enterprise
“'Ashley [Moya] is going to throw pitches, all you have to do is make an out,' and that's what they did.” The speech must have worked, because one pitch later, Navarro pitcher Moya induced Vicky Carlos to pop up to the infield....
Hewitt notches 500th win - sportal.com.au
The 28-year-old joins fellow former world No.1s Carlos Moya and Roger Federer as the only three current players to have 500 matches on the ATP Tour. Hewitt will play Dutchman Thiemo de Bakker in the second round after the qualifier ousted fifth seed...
Special Report: Madrid Tennis Open A Young Star Seeks Her Place ... - New York Times
Tennis, with Nadal producing the biggest bang, is in the midst of a boom, and Nadal himself is the logical, formidable extension of a long line of outstanding Spanish men's players, including Carlos Moya, who also reached No....
Armstrong will play second fiddle in Italy - The Argus
The other active players with more than 500 wins are Roger Federer (638) and Carlos Moya (573). Janko Tipsarevic beat Sergio Roitman 7-5, 6-2 to set up a meeting with home favorite Novak Djokovic in the second round of the Serbia Open, the country's...
UPI NewsTrack Sports - United Press International
1 Carlos Moya in the quarterfinals of the 2004 French Open before eventually losing a five-set final to fellow Argentine Gaston Gaudio. NEW YORK, April 28 (UPI) -- The International Olympic Committee announced Tuesday that six athletes tested positive...
Men's Tennis "Rewind" 1999: Why I Believe in Miracles - Bleacher Report
Other winners, like Carlos Moya and Patrick Rafter, were more likable but couldn't sustain their results year-round. There were virtually no mentions of tennis in the mainstream press in those days that didn't involve discussions of what was “wrong”...
Viewpoint: The Weakest No. 1s in History - Tennis Magazine
Carlos Moya: If there were a tennis player-card trading, you could probably swap twenty Moyas for one Pete Sampras. The likeable dirtballer was another Roland Garros one-hit wonder. 1. Marcelo Rios: With only one career Slam final (at the 1998...
Argentine tennis player Coria retires - United Press International
Coria sued the supplement maker, claiming he lost $10 million in prize money, and later settled with the New Jersey company. Coria upset former world No. 1 Carlos Moya in the quarterfinals of the 2004 French Open before eventually losing a five-set...

Carlos Moyà

Infobox last updated on: 14 February 2009.

Carlos Moyà Llompart (born 27 August 1976), also known as Carles Moyà, Carlos Moyá and Carlos Moya, is a former World No. 1 tennis player from Spain. He was the French Open singles champion in 1998 and was the singles runner-up at the 1997 Australian Open. In 2004, he helped his country win the Davis Cup. He currently resides in Switzerland . Although he plays with his right hand, he is naturally left-handed - the opposite of fellow Majorcan Rafael Nadal.

Moyà was born in Palma, Spain. He began playing tennis at six years old. He turned professional in 1995 and won his first tour title later that year in Buenos Aires. He dated Italian WTA player Flavia Pennetta but they broke up after Wimbledon 2007. He is currently dating actress Carolina Cerezuela from Spain. He comes from a family of tennis players.

In 1997, Moyà reached his first Grand Slam final at the Australian Open, where he lost in straight sets to Pete Sampras.

In 1998, Moyà won the French Open. He defeated fellow-Spaniard Álex Corretja in the final in straight sets. He also won his first Tennis Masters Series tournament that year at Monte Carlo. He concluded the year by finishing runner-up at the ATP World Championships (now known as the Tennis Masters Cup), where he lost in a five-set final to Corretja.

In March 1999, after finishing runner-up at Indian Wells, Moyà reached the World No. 1 singles ranking. He held the top spot for two weeks. Later that year, he entered the French Open as defending champion, and lost in the fourth round to Andre Agassi (who would go on to be that year's champion). At the US Open, Moyà withdrew in the second round with a back injury and only played in two tournaments for the rest of the year.

In 2000, despite being hampered with a stress fracture in his lower back from the 1999 US Open through to the early part of 2000, Moyà still managed to finish in world Top 50 for the fifth straight year. He reached the fourth round of the US Open, where he held a match point in the fourth set but eventually lost to Todd Martin in an epic five-set marathon 6–7, 6–7, 6–1, 7–6, 6–2. Moyà's best result rest of 2000 was winning at Estoril.

In 2001, Moyà won the title at Umag. He also finished runner-up at Barcelona, where he lost in a four-hour, nine-minute marathon final to countryman Juan Carlos Ferrero.

2002 saw Moyà win four titles from six finals. He captured his second career Tennis Masters Series title, and the biggest hardcourt title of his career, at Cincinnati, where he defeated World No. 1 Lleyton Hewitt in the final.

Moyà captured three clay court titles in 2003. He also helped Spain reach the final of the Davis Cup, compiling a 6–0 singles record. In the semifinals, he won the deciding rubber against Gastón Gaudio as Spain beat Argentina 3–2. He beat Mark Philippoussis on grass in the final. But that proved to be Spain's only point as they lost the final 3–1 to Australia.

In 2004, Moyà helped Spain go one better and win the Davis Cup. In the final, he won two critical singles rubbers against Andy Roddick and Mardy Fish, as Spain beat the United States 3–2. The year also saw Moyà capture his third career Masters Series title at Rome. He was the only player on the tour to win at least 20 matches on both clay courts and hardcourts that year.

In July 2004, Moyà's kind hearted gesture to hit with ballboy Sandeep Ponniah at the 2004 Tennis Masters Series Toronto event captured audiences during an injury timeout against opponent Nicholas Kiefer of Germany. To the crowd's surprise, Ponniah shuffled Moyà across the baseline and received an ovation for an overhead smash on a Moyà lob.

Moyà won his 18th career title in January 2005 at Chennai. He donated his prize money for the win to the 2004 Indian Ocean Earthquake victims.

In January 2007, Moyà was the runner-up at the Medibank International in Sydney, Australia, losing to defending champion James Blake.

In May 2007, at the Hamburg Masters, he defeated Mardy Fish, World No. 12 Tomáš Berdych, World No. 9 Blake, and World No. 6 Novak Djokovic, a run which saw him reach his first Masters semifinal since 2004 Indian Wells. After reaching the semifinals against Roger Federer, Moyà lost 4–6, 6–4, 6–2.

Moyà lost against Nadal in straight sets in the quarterfinals of the 2007 French Open.

During Wimbledon, Moyà lost in the first round to Tim Henman in a 5-set thriller, the fifth set stretching to 24 games (Henman won 13–11). Despite the loss, Moyà had no points to defend (he had not played a grass match in a few years), resulting in moving to World No. 20, his first time inside the top 20 since 13 June 2005.

In July 2007, Moyà won the Studena Croatia Open in Umag, Croatia, defeating Andrei Pavel (6–4 6–2). The win brought him to World No. 18 in the rankings, his highest rank since 23 May 2005, when he was World No. 15.

In August 2007, Moyà lost to Marcos Baghdatis in the first round of the Montréal Masters. At Cincinnati, one week later and just two weeks shy of his 31st birthday, he beat David Nalbandian 7–6 (4), 7–6 (2), World No. 3 Djokovid 6–4, 6–1, and Juan Martín del Potro 7–5, 3–6, 7–5 (after being down an early break in the third set) to set up a quarterfinal clash with Lleyton Hewitt.

In 2008 at the Cincinnati Masters, Moyà defeated Nikolay Davydenko 7-6(8), 4-6, 6-2 which was played over the course of two days because of rain. Hours after his match with Davydenko, Moyà beat Igor Andreev 6-4, 7-6 (2).

To help interpret the performance table, the legend below explains what each abbreviation and color coded box represents in the performance timeline.

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Andy Roddick

Infobox last updated on: February 23, 2009.

Andrew Stephen "Andy" Roddick (born August 30, 1982) is an American professional tennis player, and a former World No. 1.

He is the 6th-ranked player in the world, and top-ranked in the U.S., as of February 2, 2009. He became a Grand Slam singles champion when he won the title at the 2003 U.S. Open. Roddick has reached three other Grand Slam finals (Wimbledon twice, and the U.S. Open), losing to Roger Federer each time. He and Federer are the only players to have finished the season in the ATP top 10 each of the past seven years. Roddick is known for his powerful serves and forehands, and holds the fastest serve recorded in professional tennis, clocked at 155 mph (249.5 km/h).

Roddick was on the United States Davis Cup team which won the 2007 Davis Cup. Roddick defeated Dmitry Tursunov of the Russian Davis Cup team, the defending champions, in the finals.

Roddick was born in Omaha, Nebraska to Jim and Blanche Roddick. Roddick's father was a businessman, and his mother was a school teacher. She now directs the Andy Roddick Foundation. Roddick has two older brothers, Lawrence and John (All-American tennis player at University of Georgia (1996-98)), who were both promising tennis players at a young age.

Roddick lived in Austin, Texas, from age 4 until he was 10, then moved to Boca Raton, Florida in the interest of his brother John's tennis career, where he lived until graduating from Boca Prep in 2000. Roddick played varsity basketball in high school alongside Davis Cup teammate Mardy Fish, who trained and lived with Roddick in 1999. During that time period, he sometimes trained with Venus and Serena Williams; he later moved back to Austin.

Roddick began dating singer Mandy Moore in 2002. Moore, after reading a magazine article about him, thought he was really cute, so she sent her mom, who was attending a tournament in Toronto, to invite him to her set on a movie she was shooting nearby, "How to Deal." Roddick accepted, and they began dating. Roddick ended the relationship in March 2004.

Roddick was flipping through the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue when he spotted Brooklyn Decker, a fashion model. He had his agent contact hers. The two have been dating since at least the 2007 Davis Cup. On March 31, 2008, Roddick announced on his website that he and Brooklyn Decker are engaged, and will be getting married in the spring of 2009.

Roddick seriously considered quitting competitive tennis at the age of 17, when he had a losing streak in the juniors. His coach talked him into giving tennis four more months of undivided attention.

Roddick finished as the # 1 junior in the U.S. in 1999-2000, and as the # 1 junior in the world in 2000. He won six world junior singles and seven doubles titles, and won the US Open and Australian Open junior singles titles in 2000.

In March in Miami, in the first round Roddick had his first major victory as he beat world # 41 Fernando Vicente of Spain, 6-4, 6-0. In August in Washington, DC, he beat world # 30 Fabrice Santoro of France, 4-6, 6-3, 6-3. Roddick played the Banana Bowl in the city of São Paulo and won, beating Joachim Johansson in the final match. Roddick also won the Australian Junior Open, defeating Mario Ancic in the final.

In 2001, Roddick defeated Michael Chang in 5 sets in the second round of the French Open. During Wimbledon, he further showed potential by taking a set from eventual winner Goran Ivanišević. He also defeated 7-time Wimbledon champion, world # 4, and fellow American Pete Sampras, at the age of 19, at the Miami Masters, 7-6 (2), 6-3 in March, and world # 1 Gustavo Kuerten of Brazil 6-7 (4), 6-4, 6-2 in August.

Despite a lackluster French Open, Roddick enjoyed success in the United Kingdom by winning Queen's Club (beating world # 2 Agassi 6-1, 6-7 (5), 7-6 (6) along the way) and reaching the Wimbledon semifinals, where he lost to eventual champion Federer in straight sets. He avenged that loss in August, beating world # 3 Federer in Montreal, 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 (3).

Roddick's hardcourt record in 2003 included his first Masters Series titles – coming at Canada and Cincinnati – and his first Grand Slam title.

At the U.S. Open, Roddick rallied from two sets down and a match point against him in the semifinals to beat David Nalbandian 6-7 (4), 3-6, 7-6 (7), 6-1, 6-3. He then defeated world # 3 Juan Carlos Ferrero in the final, 6–3, 7–6, 6–3.

At the Tennis Masters Cup in Houston he defeated world # 7 Carlos Moya of Spain, 6-2, 3-6, 6-3, and world # 4 Guillermo Coria of Argentina, 6-3, 6-7 (4), 6-3.

By the end of the year, at age 21, he was ranked # 1, the first American to finish a year at # 1 since Andre Agassi in 1999. He also became the youngest American to hold this rank since computer rankings were started in 1973.

In April Roddick again beat world # 6 Moya, this time 5-7, 6-2, 7-5. Roddick was knocked out during the 2004 U.S. Open in a five-set quarterfinal against another big server, Joachim Johansson. Later in Septmember in Bankok he beat world # 9 Marat Safin of Russia, 7-6 (1), 6-7 (7), 7-6 (2).

At the 2004 Summer Olympics, Roddick lost to Chilean Fernando González, the eventual bronze medal winner, in the third round.

In November he beat world # 7 Tim Henman of Great Britain 7-5, 7-6 (6), world # 4 Safin, 7-6 (7), 7-6 (4), and world # 6 Coria 7-6 (4), 6-3.

Later that year, Roddick teamed up with Mardy Fish and Bob and Mike Bryan on the U.S. Davis Cup team that lost to Spain in the final in Seville. Roddick lost his singles match against Rafael Nadal, who would in the following year win the French Open.

Towards the end of 2004, Roddick fired his coach of 18 months, Brad Gilbert, and hired assistant Davis Cup coach Dean Goldfine.

Roddick finished 2004 ranked as the world # 2, the U.S.'s # 1, and the player with the most aces (1,017).

In 2004 Roddick saved fellow tennis player Sjeng Schalken and other guests (including close friends Ben Campezi and Dean Monroe) from a hotel fire.

Roddick's first 2005 tournament victory was the SAP Open in San Jose, California, where he became the first to win the event in consecutive years since Mark Philippoussis in 1999 and 2000. The top-seeded Roddick defeated Cyril Saulnier 6–0, 6–4 in 50 minutes, the event's first championship shutout set since Arthur Ashe beat Guillermo Vilas in 1975.

In March he defeated World No. 7 Carlos Moya 6–7 (4), 6–4, 6–1. In April, Roddick won the U.S. Men's Claycourt Championships, reclaiming the title he won in 2001 and 2002. (He lost in 2003 to Agassi, and in 2004 to Tommy Haas.) In May, Roddick had match point against Spain's Fernando Verdasco. Verdasco was attempted to save the match point on his second serve, when the linesman erroneously called the serve out. If this call had held, Roddick would have won the match. Roddick motioned to the umpire, pointing to the clear ball mark on the clay indicating the ball was in, and the call was consequently changed. Verdasco went on to win the match.

At the French Open, Roddick lost to the unseeded Argentine José Acasuso in the second round, and at Wimbledon, Roddick lost to Federer in the final for the second consecutive year. In August, he defeated World No. 3 Lleyton Hewitt, 6–4, 7–6 (4) at the Masters Series tournament in Cincinnati.

At the US Open, Roddick was defeated by World No. 70 Gilles Müller in the first round. Roddick's last US Open first round loss had been in 2000. At the Grand Prix de Tennis de Lyon, Roddick defeated Gaël Monfils to wrap up a tournament without losing a set or getting his serve broken.

Roddick's first ATP event of the year was the Australian Open. There he reached the fourth round before being upset by unseeded and eventual finalist, Marcos Baghdatis. At the French Open Roddick retired in the first round, after sustaining a foot injury during the match. Two weeks later at Wimbledon, Roddick was upset in the third round by British hopeful Andy Murray. This loss caused Roddick to fall below the top 10 for the first time since 2002.

After Wimbledon, Roddick began working with a new coach, tennis legend Jimmy Connors. In his first event with his new coach, Roddick reached the final of Indianapolis before losing to good friend, and fellow American, James Blake. His resurgence finally came at the Cincinnati Masters, where he won the event by defeating Juan Carlos Ferrero in the final, making this the first masters event he won since 2004. At the U.S. Open, Roddick easily won his first two matches against Florent Serra and Kristian Pless. He then played a thriller five-set match against Fernando Verdasco, winning 6-2 in the final set. Next he beat Benjamin Becker, who was coming off a huge win against recently retired Andre Agassi. In the quarterfinals, Roddick beat Lleyton Hewitt, avenging his loss in 2002, 6-3, 7-5, 6-4. Now in the semifinals for the first time since he won in 2003, Roddick played Mikhail Youzhny, and beat him 6-7, 6-0, 7-6, 6-3. In the finals of a Grand Slam for the first time since Wimbledon a year prior, Roddick was to play world # 1 Federer. He lost however, 2-6, 6-4, 5-7, 1-6. He then qualified for the year-ending Tennis Masters Cup, where he defeated world # 4 Ivan Ljubicic of Croatia 6-4, 6-7 (9), 6-1, but lost in the round robin to world # 1 Federer 6–4, 6–7 (8), 4–6 in a tough three-set battle.

Roddick entered the 2007 Australian Open as the sixth seed. In his first round match, he lost a marathon first-set tiebreak 20-18, but eventually won the match in four sets against wild card Jo-Wilfried Tsonga from France. Roddick defeated 26th-seeded Marat Safin in the third round, and 9th seeded Mario Ančić in a five-set fourth round match. Roddick won his quarterfinal match against fellow American Mardy Fish 6–2, 6–2, 6–2. His run ended in the semifinals by world # 1 Federer, who defeated him in straight sets 6–4, 6–0, 6–2, making his head-to-head record against Federer 1-13.

In first round Davis Cup action, Roddick helped the U.S. defeat the Czech Republic, winning his singles matches against Ivo Minář and Tomáš Berdych.

Roddick reached at least the semifinals of his next two tournaments. He bowed out to Andy Murray in the semifinals of the SAP Open in San Jose, California, a reprise of 2006. Roddick then defeated Murray in the semifinals of the Regions Morgan Keegan Championships and the Cellular South Cup in Memphis, Tennessee, before losing in the final to defending champion Tommy Haas 6–3, 6–2. Reaching the final, however, enabled Roddick to overtake Nikolay Davydenko for the world # 3 position, his first week inside the top three since March 6, 2006.

At the first ATP Masters Series tournament of the year, after beating world # 8 Ljubicic 6-4, 6-7 (9), 6-1, Roddick reached the semifinals of the Pacific Life Open in Indian Wells, California, lost to world # 2 Rafael Nadal 6–4, 6–3.

Roddick then played the Miami Masters, where he retired from his quarterfinal match against Andy Murray due to a left hamstring injury.

Roddick then helped the U.S. defeat Spain and advance to the Davis Cup semifinals, winning his lone singles match against Fernando Verdasco 7–6 (5), 6–1, 6–4. However, Roddick re-aggravated his hamstring injury during the Davis Cup tie, and was subsequently forced to pull out of the U.S. Men's Clay Court Championships in Houston, Texas. Roddick also announced that he would withdraw from the Monte Carlo Masters, citing the injury.

His next tournament was at the Internazionali d'Italia. After a first round bye, he won his first match against Gastón Gaudio, where he saved all three break points and fired nine aces. However, he was unable to stop Juan Ignacio Chela in the third round, losing 6–0, 6–4.

Roddick then withdrew from the Masters Series Hamburg tournament because, according to his website, he needed time to physically prepare himself for the upcoming French Open. Roddick was seeded third at the French Open, but was eliminated in the first round by Russian Igor Andreev in four sets 6-3, 4-6, 3-6, 4-6.

Roddick was victorious at the Stella Artois Championships for the fourth time when he defeated Nicolas Mahut in the final 4–6, 7–6 (7), 7–6 (2).

At Wimbledon, Roddick was seeded third and considered one of the pre-tournament favorites behind Federer and Nadal. He reached the quarterfinals after wins against Justin Gimelstob of the U.S., Danai Udomchoke of Thailand, Fernando Verdasco of Spain, and Paul-Henri Mathieu of France. In the quarterfinals, Roddick lost in five close sets to Richard Gasquet of France 4–6, 4–6, 7–6 (2), 7–6 (3), 8–6.

During the summer hardcourt season, Roddick played four tournaments in four weeks. Roddick made it to the semifinals of the Indianapolis Tennis Championships, where he was upset by Frank Dancevic of Canada 6–4, 7–6 (1). The next week, however, Roddick claimed his second ATP title of the year by winning the Legg Mason Tennis Classic in Washington, D.C. for the third time, when he beat American newcomer John Isner 6–4, 7–6 (4). He then lost in the quarterfinals of the Rogers Cup in Montreal to Novak Đoković, and in the third round of the Western & Southern Financial Group Masters tournament in Cincinnati, Ohio to David Ferrer of Spain.

At the U.S. Open, Roddick defeated Gimelstob in the first round 7–6 (6), 6–3, 6–3. He won his next three matches, one in straight sets and the other two when his opponent retired. In the quarterfinals, Roddick once again lost to Federer 7–6 (5), 7–6 (4), 6–2, bringing his head-to-head record with Federer 1-14. There were no breaks of serve and only one break point total in the first two sets, that being on Federer's serve.

Two weeks later, Roddick anchored the U.S. Davis Cup team during its 4–1 semifinal defeat of Sweden. Roddick won both his singles matches, opening the tie with a defeat of Joachim Johansson 7–6 (4), 7–6 (3), 6–3, and clinching it with a 6–2, 7–6 (3), 6–4 victory over Jonas Björkman. This was the ninth time in nine tries that Roddick has clinched a tie for the American team.

Roddick's then set his sights on the Madrid Masters, but pulled out, citing a knee injury. At his next tournament two weeks later in Lyon, France, Roddick lost in the first round to frenchman Fabrice Santoro 7–6 (5), 2–6, 6–4. Roddick then withdrew from the Paris Masters, incurring a $22,600 fine for not fulfilling his media obligations at the tournament.

At the season-ending Tennis Masters Cup in Shanghai, Roddick defeated world # 4 Nikolay Davydenko 6–3, 4–6, 6–2 in his first round-robin match, and then defeated world # 7 Fernando González in his next match to become the first player to qualify for the semifinals of the tournament. In his third and final round-robin match, Roddick lost once again to Federer, 6–4, 6–2 for the 15th time in 16 career matches. In the semifinals, Roddick lost 6–1, 6–3 to # 6 seed David Ferrer, who had won all three of his round-robin matches. This was Roddick's third semifinal finish out of the last five years at the Tennis Masters Cup (he reached the semifinals in 2003 and 2004, withdrew in 2005, and failed to advance to the semifinals in 2006 after a 1–2 round-robin record).

Roddick finished the year by helping the U.S. defeat Russia and win the 2007 Davis Cup, its 32nd Davis Cup victory but first since 1995. Roddick won his rubber against Dmitry Tursunov 6–4, 6–4, 6–2, before James Blake and Bob and Mike Bryan completed the victory. Having secured the tie with an unassailable 3–0 lead, Roddick decided to sit out his second singles match of the tie.

Roddick started 2008 strongly, defeating Ljubičić 6–3, 6–0, and Safin 6–3, 6–3 to reach AAMI Kooyong Classic final for four consecutive seasons. In the final, he defeated Baghdatis 7–5, 6–3 to win the tournament for the third consecutive year.

Roddick was seeded sixth in the 2008 Australian Open. In the first round, he defeated Lukáš Dlouhý of the Czech Republic 6–3, 6–4, 7–5. In the second round, he defeated German Michael Berrer 6–2, 6–2, 6–4. He then lost to the # 29 seed Philipp Kohlschreiber of Germany in the third round in a 5-set match 4–6, 6–3, 6–7 (9), 7–6 (3), 6–8. Despite losing, Roddick served a career-high of 42 aces in a match.

Roddick won his 24th career title and his 3rd title at the SAP Open in San Jose, California. He defeated the Czech Radek Štěpánek in straight sets, 6–4, 7–5.

Roddick's next tournament was the Dubai Tennis Championships. He made it to the semi-finals by defeating world # 2 Rafael Nadal of Spain 7–6 (5), 6–2, his first victory over Nadal since the second round of the 2004 US Open. The win also marked Roddick's first victory over a player ranked in the top two since June 2003. He progressed through to the finals by defeating world # 3 and 2008 Australian Open Singles Champion Novak Djokovic 7–6 (5), 6–3 in the semi-final. By making it to the final, he became the first American to reach the Barclays Dubai Tennis Championships final in the tournament's 16-year history. In the final he defeated Feliciano López 6–7 (8), 6–4, 6–2, to win his 25th career title.

Following Roddick's quarterfinal match in Dubai, he announced that he had split with his coach of two years, Jimmy Connors. Connors had resigned a week earlier, saying he wanted to spend more time with his family. Roddick would continue to be coached by his brother, John Roddick. He then fell to former world # 2 Tommy Haas at the Indian Wells Masters in the 2nd round, 6–4, 6–4.

At the 2008 Miami Masters, Roddick advanced to the semifinals after defeating world # 1 Federer 7-6 (4), 4-6, 6-3 an hour after proposing to Brooklyn Decker, bringing his head-to-head record against Federer to 2-15. Roddick improved to 3-0 against top-3 players in 2008. Roddick lost in the semi-finals to Davydenko 6-7 (5), 2-6. Roddick's next tournament was the Masters tournament in Rome. There he equaled his best result by reaching the semifinals, where he retired against Stanislas Wawrinka in the pair's first encounter, due to a back injury.

Roddick was forced to pull out of the 2008 French Open due to a shoulder injury. After a visit to a doctor in New York it was determined this was nothing more than an inflammation of the rotator cuff. His first tournament after the shoulder injury was the Artois Championship, his annual Wimbledon preparation, where he was the defending champion after winning the title last year, one of four wins at the tournament. In the tournament, Roddick defeated Mardy Fish and Andy Murray before losing to eventual champion Nadal in the semi-finals.

In the 2008 Wimbledon, Roddick suffered a 2nd round defeat to Serbia's Janko Tipsarević 6–7 (5), 7–5, 6–4, 7–6 (4). This was his earliest exit at Wimbledon.

Roddick was beaten at the Toronto Masters in the third round by Marin Čilić, 4-6, 6-4, 4-6. He was then forced to pull out of the Cincinnati Masters following a neck injury, which he said may have been caused by a poor sleeping posture. He stated in an interview that the neck injury had nothing to do with his shoulder injury.

Roddick did not participate in the 2008 Summer Olympics, with his reason being to concentrate on the 2008 US Open.

In order to prepare for the US Open, Roddick then played in the smaller hard court tournaments in the US Open Series, including those at Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. At the Countrywide Classic in Los Angeles, Roddick lost to Juan Martín del Potro in the final, 1-6, 6-7 (2).

At the 2008 US Open, Roddick defeated Fabrice Santoro in the first round 6-2, 6-2, 6-2. Roddick then won his next 3 matches against Ernests Gulbis, Andreas Seppi, and Fernando González. In the quarterfinals, Roddick lost to the World No. 3 and reigning Australian Open champion Novak Djokovic 2-6, 3-6, 6-3, 6-7 (5) bringing his head-to-head record to 1-2.

Roddick captured his 26th ATP title in Beijing at the China Open on September 28, 2008. He defeated Dudi Sela of Israel, 6-4, 6-7 (6), 6-3. The victory was part of Roddick's strong showing in Asia, as he reached the semifinal round of the AIG Japan Open where he lost to eventual champion Tomáš Berdych after squandering a 5-3 lead in the third and deciding set.

In the third round of the Madrid Masters he lost to Frenchman Gaël Monfils in three sets 4-6, 6-3, 3-6. Two weeks later, Roddick reached the quarterfinals of Paris Masters by defeating Frenchman Gilles Simon, 6-3, 7-5, before losing to Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. Due to his performance in the tournament, Roddick automatically qualified for the season-ending Tennis Masters Cup. At the Masters Cup in Shanghai, he played Andy Murray in his first round robin match and lost 4-6, 6-1, 1-6. He was then scheduled to play Federer, but retired due to an ankle injury and was replaced by Štěpánek.

He hired Larry Stefanki as his new coach, and started working with him on December 1. Stefanki had previously trained John McEnroe, Yevgeny Kafelnikov, Fernando González, and Tim Henman. Under his guidance both Marcelo Rios and Kafelnikov became world number one.

After losing the exhibition championship Capitala World Tennis in Abu Dhabi, Roddick began his 2009 season by playing at the Qatar ExxonMobil Open. He defeated Ivan Navarro, Arnaud Clement, and Victor Hanescu in the early rounds. In the semifinals he beat Gael Monfils in a closely fought match, 7–6, 3–6, 6–3, to set up a final with Andy Murray, which he lost 6–4, 6–2.

At the first round of the 2009 Australian Open, Roddick beat Bjorn Rehnquist, before Roddick battled from a set down to defeat Xavier Malisse 4–6, 6–2, 7–6 (1), 6–2 in the second. After following this up with victories over Fabrice Santoro and 21-seed Tommy Robredo, Roddick played the defending champion and world # 3 Novak Djokovic in the quarterfinals. Djokovic retired in the fourth set, 6–7 (3), 6–4, 6–2, 2–1, allowing Roddick to reach the fourth Australian Open semifinal of his career. Roddick was defeated in the semifinals by eventual runner-up Federer, 6–2, 7–5, 7–5, bringing their head-to-head series to 2-16.

In the SAP Open, Roddick beat qualifier Michael Ryderstedt 6-0, 7-6 (3) in 62 minutes. He defeated his next opponent, Ernests Gulbis, 6-3, 7-6 (3). Roddick saved four break points on serve in the second set, and converted on his first of three match points in the tie-break to secure the win in one hour and 20 minutes. He then snapped a three-match losing streak against Tommy Haas in his quarterfinal match, securing the 7-5, 6-4 in one hour and 37 minutes. Roddick, whose last win against Haas had come in the 2005 San Jose semifinals, now has a 4-7 head-to-head record against the former World No. 2 tennis player. Roddick lost in the semifinals to Radek Stepanek, 6-3, 6-7 (5), 4-6. It was the first time in five matches between the two players that Roddick had lost.

In the Regions Morgan Keegan Championships, Roddick beat Steve Darcis of Belgium 7-6(1), 6-2 in the first round, and quickly defeated Robby Ginepri 6-2, 6-3 in the second. He defeated Sam Querrey 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 to reach the semifinals. There Roddick defeated Australian Lleyton Hewitt 2-6, 7-6, 6-4, to reach the final. He took his first title of the year by beating Stepanek in the championship match, 7-5, 7-5. He had to recover from being up a break and losing serve in the first set, but broke serve to take the opener. The two remained on serve throughout the second set until Roddick broke to take the match.

Roddick will not defend his Dubai title, with prize money of over $2 million, to protest the UAE's refusal to grant Israeli Shahar Pe'er a visa for the WTA event. "I really didn't agree with what went on over there," Roddick said.

With his 6-2, 6-3, 6-2 win over Paul-Henri Mathieu on April 13, for the deciding victory in the best-of-five 2008 quarterfinal Davis Cup match with France, Roddick improved to 10-0 in clinching situations for the United States. In his second singles victory in three days, he was held to 17 aces, down from 30 against Michaël Llodra a few days prior.

Roddick improved to 29-9 for the US in Davis Cup matches, trailing only John McEnroe (41) and Andre Agassi (30). His win against the 12th-ranked Mathieu was part of a strong month in which he beat the tour's top three players -- Federer, Nadal, and Djokovic.

Roddick is often called "A-Rod," referring to his first initial and the first three letters of his last name, and a reference to baseball superstar Alex Rodriguez who already has that nickname.

Roddick uses the Pure Drive Roddick Plus Cortex Racquet with Babolat Pro Hurricane Tour string (of yellow color), a signature racquet designed for him by racquet sponsor Babolat, which is slightly heavier (11.9 oz), stiffer (Babolat RDC index 72), and longer (27.5") than the standard Pure Drive Series (11.3 oz, Babolat RDC 71, 27"). The racquet is designed for a strong service due to its weight, stiffness, and length. According to Tennis Warehouse, the best one for this fundamental. He strings with a custom hybrid (Pro Hurricane Tour + VS). Roddick's tension varies, but he mostly strings his racquets to a tension of roughly 64 or 65 pounds.

Roddick also uses Babolat Propulse II tennis shoes, which are his signature gear. In matches, Roddick wears shirts, shorts, and caps manufactured for him by Lacoste. He formerly wore Reebok.

Roddick's style is that of an offensive baseliner. Roddick is known for his powerful first serve, usually around 130-150 mph (209~242 km/h), which he uses to earn free points with aces or put himself into position to hit a forehand winner. His first serve is known to some as the "Roddick Serve." since he abbreviates the serve by removing part of the motion. He usually targets the two corners to win aces.

For his second serve, Roddick usually employs a heavy kick serve, then tries to use a variety of spins, slices, and angles in the rally to throw off his opponent and position himself for a winning shot. Despite all this, Roddick is sometimes criticized for his lack of variety.

Roddick will also occasionally use the serve-and-volley tactic on both first and second services to surprise his opponent, though he generally prefers to remain near the baseline after a serve. Lately, under new coach Larry Stefanki, Roddick has been developing his volleying skills.

On April 5, 2002, Roddick guest-starred on the television show Sabrina, the Teenage Witch as himself. In the episode, Sabrina summoned him so he could give her tennis lessons.

Roddick appeared on the The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn talk show in 2002 and 2003, Late Show with David Letterman, Late Night with Conan O'Brien, and Live with Regis and Kathie Lee in 2003, Jimmy Kimmel Live! in 2004 and 2005, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno in 2005 and 2007, and The Ellen DeGeneres Show in 2006. Roddick also appeared on Friday Night with Jonathan Ross on June 8, 2007. The two had humorous conversations about life beyond the court, other players, and on-court fashions. At one point during the interview, Ross sat on Roddick's lap to try to make him feel uncomfortable.

Roddick hosted Saturday Night Live on November 8, 2003, becoming the second tennis player, (the first having been Chris Evert) and the first male tennis player to host (while Chris Evert is the only female tennis player to host SNL).

Roddick also appeared on a 2004 episode of the Anne Robinson Version of The Weakest Link, but ended up being voted off.

Roddick is in a This is SportsCenter ad with Stuart Scott, in which he confronts the Sports Center anchor about him not calling him "A-Rod," and asks him "Did Alex Rodriguez put you up to this?" Scott replies "Who?" Roddick says "A-Rod!" Scott gets a sneaky look on his face, and Roddick leaves disgusted.

The June/July 2007 issue of Men's Fitness magazine carried an article on Roddick. The cover shot featured the tennis ace in a t-shirt, straining to contain massive, pumped-up biceps and hulking shoulder and chest muscles. The image set off widespread online speculation that the magazine had altered Roddick's likeness, a suspicion echoed by Roddick himself. Roddick has quipped that he saw the photo, and that Nadal wanted his arms back.

In 2004, Roddick produced the fastest serve in professional tennis: 249.4 km/h (155 mph) during a Davis Cup semi-final match with Vladimir Voltchkov on hard court in Charleston. Earlier that year, Roddick had the fastest serve in U.S. Open history: 244 km/h (152 mph) against American Scoville Jenkins. Roddick also won the 2004 ESPY Award for Best Male Tennis Player.

That same year he won the Arthur Ashe Humanitarian Award of the Year because of his charity efforts, which included: raising money for the survivors of the tsunami following 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake through Serving for Tsunami Relief and other efforts; auctioning off several rackets and autographs to raise money for UNICEF; and creating the Andy Roddick Foundation to help at-risk youth. The foundation is partly funded through the sale of blue wristbands inscribed "No Compromise," inspired by Lance Armstrong's yellow Livestrong wristbands.

In 2007 Roddick and the Andy Roddick Foundation was awarded by the Arthur Ashe Institute for Urban Health. Roddick was the first male tennis player ever to receive the award.

To prevent confusion and double counting, information in this table is updated only after a tournament or the player's participation in the tournament has concluded. Davis Cup matches are included in the statistics. This table is current through the 2008 Madrid Masters, which ends on October 19, 2008.

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Novak Djokovic

Novak Djokovic at the 2008 Tennis Masters Cup.jpg

Infobox last updated on: February 23, 2009.

Novak Djokovic (help·info) (Serbian: Новак Ђоковић, Novak Đoković, pronounced , born May 22, 1987 in Belgrade, Serbia (part of Yugoslavia at the time), is a Serbian professional tennis player who is currently ranked World No. 3.

He won his first Grand Slam singles title at the 2008 Australian Open. After beating World No. 1 and defending champion Roger Federer in the semifinals, Djokovic defeated Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the final, becoming the first player representing Serbia to win a Grand Slam singles title and the youngest player in the open era to have reached the semifinals of all four Grand Slam events. He was the runner-up at the 2007 US Open and won the bronze medal in singles at the 2008 Olympic Games. He won the Tennis Masters Cup in 2008 and has won four Masters Series tournaments.

Djokovic was born May 22, 1987 in Belgrade Serbia, then Yugoslavia. He was born to Serbian parents, Srdjan and Dijana, and is the oldest of their three sons. His two younger brothers, Djordje and Marko, are also tennis players with professional aspirations. He started playing tennis at the age of four, and was spotted by Yugoslav tennis legend Jelena Genčić at the age of eight, who stated "This is the greatest talent I have seen since Monica Seles." At twelve years old, he spent three years at Nikola Pilić's tennis academy in Munich, Germany, and at age fourteen, his international career began, winning European championships in singles, doubles, and team competition. He currently resides in Monte Carlo, Monaco and is coached by a former Slovak tennis player, Marián Vajda.

Djokovic speaks Serbian, Italian and English fluently and often gives interviews and press conferences in all three. He also speaks a bit of German.

Djokovic is also known for his often humorous off-court impersonations of his fellow players, many of whom are his friends. This became evident to the tennis world after his 2007 US Open quarterfinal win over Carlos Moyà, where he entertained the audience with impersonations of Rafael Nadal and Maria Sharapova.

In the beginning of his professional career, Djokovic mainly played in Futures and Challenger tournaments, winning three of each type.

He participated in the 2006 Hopman Cup with fellow Serbian player Ana Ivanović, with the pairing narrowly missing the final.

In May 2006, various reports appeared in the British media about Djokovic's mother Dijana reportedly approaching Britain's Lawn Tennis Association about her son joining British tennis ranks and the possibility of their entire 5-person family moving from Serbia to live in Britain. All the rumours didn't affect Djokovic's play, however. He started 2006 ranked 78th, but with an excellent path to the quarterfinals at the French Open and a fourth-round appearance at Wimbledon, he found himself in the top 40.

Just three weeks after Wimbledon, he won his maiden title at the Dutch Open in Amersfoort without losing a set, defeating Nicolás Massú in the final. Djokovic won his second career title at Open de Moselle in Metz, and with this victory moved into the top 20 for the first time in his career.

At the US Open, Djokovic lost in the third round to former World No. 1 Lleyton Hewitt 6–3, 6–1, 6–2.

Djokovic began the year by winning in Adelaide, defeating Australian Chris Guccione in the final. At the Australian Open, he lost in the fourth round to eventual champion Roger Federer in straight sets.

His performances at the Masters Series events in Indian Wells, California and Miami Masters, where he was the runner-up and champion respectively, pushed him into the world's top ten. Djokovic lost the Indian Wells final to Rafael Nadal but defeated Nadal in the Miami Masters event before defeating the resurgent Guillermo Cañas in the final.

He later played in the Masters Series Monte Carlo Open where he was defeated by David Ferrer in the third round in straight sets. At the Estoril Open, Djokovic defeated Frenchman Richard Gasquet in the final. He then reached the quarterfinals of both the Internazionali d'Italia in Rome and the Masters Series Hamburg but lost to Nadal and Carlos Moyà, respectively.

At the French Open, Djokovic reached his first Grand Slam semifinal ever, where he lost to eventual champion Nadal.

During Wimbledon, Djokovic won a five hour quarterfinal against Marcos Baghdatis 7–6(4), 7–6(9), 6–7(3), 4–6, 7–5. In his semifinal match, he was forced to retire against Nadal due to a back injury and foot problem. He became the first player to retire from semifinal match at Wimbledon.

Djokovic then won the Masters Series Rogers Cup in Montreal. He defeated World No. 3 Andy Roddick in the quarterfinals, World No. 2 Nadal in the semifinals, and World No. 1 Federer in the final. This was the first time a player had defeated the top three ranked players in one tournament since Boris Becker in 1994. And Djokovic was only the second player, after Tomáš Berdych, to have defeated both Federer and Nadal since they became the top two players players in the world. After this tournament, Björn Borg stated that Djokovic "is definitely a contender to win a Grand Slam (tournament)." However, the following week at the Western & Southern Financial Group Masters in Cincinnati, Ohio, Djokovic lost in the second round to Carlos Moyà in straight sets.

He nevertheless reached the final of the US Open. Djokovic had five set points on serve in the first set and two against serve in the second set but lost them all before losing the final to top-seeded Federer in straight sets. On his way to the final, Djokovic won a nearly five hour second round match against Radek Štěpánek 6–7(4), 7–6(5), 5–7, 7–5, 7–6(2).

After recovering from a minor injury, Djokovic won his fifth title of the year at the BA-CA TennisTrophy in Vienna, defeating Stanislas Wawrinka in the final. Djokovic's next tournament was the Mutua Madrileña Masters in Madrid, where he lost to David Nalbandian in the semifinals 6–4, 7–6(4). At the BNP Paribas Masters in Paris, he was upset by Frenchman Fabrice Santoro.

Djokovic, then assured of finishing the year as World No. 3 and for the first time, he qualified for the Tennis Masters Cup. Djokovic was the first player to arrive. He was also the first player to exit the tournament, losing all three of his round-robin matches in straight sets. He lost to Ferrer 6–4, 6–4; Gasquet 6–4, 6–2; and Nadal 6–4, 6–4.

Djokovic started the year by playing the Hopman Cup along with fellow Serbian World Number 3 Jelena Janković. He won all his round-robin matches and the team, seeded first, reached the final. They lost 2–1 to the second-seeded American team consisting of Serena Williams and Mardy Fish.

At the Australian Open, Djokovic reached the final without losing a set. Along the way, he defeated the top-seeded and defending champion Roger Federer in the semifinals 7–5, 6–3, 7–6(5). This ended Federer's streak of 10 consecutive Grand Slam finals. Djokovic also became the first person to beat Federer in straight sets in a Grand Slam tournament since Gustavo Kuerten at the 2004 French Open. Djokovic then defeated unseeded Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the final to earn Serbia's and his first ever Grand Slam singles title. At the age of 20 years and 250 days, he was the youngest male to win the Australian Open singles title since Stefan Edberg in 1985. This win also enabled him to surpass US$6 million in career prize money.

At the Open 13 tournament in Marseille, Djokovic was upset by Frenchman Gilles Simon in the second round 6–2, 6–7(6), 6–3. Djokovic's next tournament was the Dubai Duty Free Men's Open, where he lost in the semifinals to World No. 6 Andy Roddick 7–6(5), 6–3.

At the Masters Series Pacific Life Open in Indian Wells, California, Djokovic won his ninth career singles title, defeating American Mardy Fish in the three-set final. At the Masters Series Sony Ericsson Open in Key Biscayne, Florida, Djokovic was upset in the second round by Kevin Anderson 7–6, 3–6, 6–4.

On red clay at the Monte Carlo Masters, Djokovic retired from his semifinal match with Federer while trailing 6–3, 3–2. However, two weeks later, Djokovic won his tenth career singles title and fourth Master Series singles crown at the Internazionali d'Italia in Rome after defeating Stanislas Wawrinka in the final. The following week at the Hamburg Masters, Djokovic lost to Nadal in a three-hour semifinal match 7–5, 2–6, 6–2. At the French Open in Paris, Djokovic was the third-seeded player behind Federer and Nadal. Djokovic lost to Nadal in the semifinals 6–4, 6–2, 7–6(3).

On grass, Djokovic once again played Nadal, this time in the Artois Championships final in Queen's Club, London, losing 7–6(6), 7–5. At Wimbledon, Djokovic was the third seeded player; however, he lost in the second round to former World No. 1, but unseeded, Marat Safin 6–4, 7–6(3), 6–2.

Djokovic then failed to defend his 2007 singles title at the Masters Series Rogers Cup in Toronto. He was eliminated in the quarterfinals by eighth-seeded Andy Murray 6–3, 7–6(3). The following week at the Western & Southern Financial Group Masters in Cincinnati, Ohio, Djokovic advanced to the final after having beaten World No. 2 Nadal in the semifinals 6–1, 7–5, ending the Spaniard's 32-match winning streak. In the final, he lost to Murray in straight sets.

His next tournament was the Beijing Olympics, his first Summer Olympics. He and Nenad Zimonjić, seeded second in men's doubles, were eliminated in the first round by the Czech pairing of Martin Damm and Pavel Vízner. Seeded third in singles, Djokovic lost in the semifinals to Nadal, the eventual champion, 6–4, 1–6, 6–4. This match was also noted for Djokovic's reaction after the match, because on match point, Djokovic missed a relatively easy smash. When Nadal came to the net, Djokovic gave him a hug, and then proceeded to later leave the court in tears, barely able to wave to the crowd. Djokovic then defeated James Blake, the loser of the other semifinal, in the bronze medal match 6–3, 7–6(4).

After the Olympics, Djokovic entered the US Open as the third seed. During his fourth round match with Tommy Robredo, he was plagued by both a hip injury, for which he required two time-outs, and exhaustion. Nevertheless, he won the match 4–6, 6–2, 6–3, 5–7, 6–3. Eighth-seeded Andy Roddick later said in a press conference that Djokovic was "either quick to call a trainer or the most courageous guy of all time", insinuating that his opponent had a reputation for being injured, as well as giving a list of ailments he thought Djokovic might have. After defeating Roddick, 6–2, 6–3, 3–6, 7–6(5) in the quarterfinals, he was booed on the court during in a courtside interview, after sarcastically saying, "Andy was saying that I have 16 injuries in the last match, obviously I don't, right?" Djokovic later apologized to Roddick, saying that it was a misunderstanding. His run at the US Open ended in the semifinals when he lost to Federer 6–3, 5–7, 7–5, 6–2 in a rematch of the 2007 US Open final.

At the finals of the Thailand Open, in a rematch of the 2008 Australian Open final, he lost to Tsonga in straight sets.

He was upset in the third round of the Mutua Madrileña Masters in Madrid by Croat Ivo Karlović 7–6(4), 7–6(5) without any breaks of serve during the match. Two weeks later at the BNP Paribas Masters in Paris, he lost in the third round once again to Tsonga 6–4, 2–6, 6–3.

In November, Djokovic was the second seed at the year-ending Tennis Masters Cup in Shanghai. In his first round robin match, he defeated Argentine Juan Martin Del Potro in straight sets. He then beat Nikolay Davydenko in three sets before losing his final round robin match against Tsonga 1–6, 7–5, 6–1. However, by having a round robin record of 2-1, Djokovic qualified for the semifinals, where he defeated Gilles Simon 4–6, 6–3, 7–5. In the final, Djokovic defeated Davydenko once again to win his first ever Tennis Masters Cup title.

Djokovic started the year at the Brisbane International in Brisbane, Australia. He was upset by Ernests Gulbis in the first round 6–4, 6–4. At the Medibank International in Sydney, he lost to Jarkko Nieminen in the semifinals 6–4, 7–6(3).

Djokovic then participated in the Open 13 in Marseille and reached the semifinals only to be beaten by Jo-Wilfried Tsonga for the fourth consecutive time 6–4, 7–6(1).

He is good friends with fellow junior graduate (and sometimes doubles partner) Andy Murray, who was part of the British team that Serbia and Montenegro defeated in the Davis Cup in Glasgow in April 2006. Djokovic got the decisive win on April 9, 2006 by defeating Greg Rusedski in four sets in the fourth match, giving his team a 3–1 lead in their best of 5 series, thus keeping Serbia and Montenegro in the Group One Euro/African Zone of Davis Cup.

Djokovic has represented Serbia since Montenegro gained independence in June 2006. By winning all three of his matches, Djokovic played a key role in the 2007 play-off win over Australia, promoting Serbia to World Group in 2008. In Serbia's tie against Russia in early 2008 in Moscow, Djokovic was sidelined due to influenza and was forced to miss his first singles match. He returned to win his doubles match, teaming with Nenad Zimonjić, before being forced to retire during his singles match with Nikolay Davydenko. Djokovic also had a big role in promoting Serbia to the 2009 World Group.

Djokovic is an all-court player. His greatest strengths lie in his dominant groundstrokes, especially the forehand which are powerful, deep, well angled, and hit with strong topspin, although his preferred groundstroke is the backhand. With considerable speed, his serve is one of his major weapons winning many free points from his flatter first serve and employing a sharp curving kick serve as his second serve. While very sound and powerful from the baseline, he would often finish his points by coming to the net similar to Roger Federer. He also utilizes a well-disguised backhand underspin dropshot and sliced backhand (groundstroke) in his repertoire.

Djokovic endorses and is sponsored by adidas and Head. He wears the adidas Barricade V shoes and the adidas Edge Group clothing. Djokovic played with a new prototype Head racquet since the start of the 2009 season, said to be released in May. He also uses Tecnifibre X One Biphase Strings.

To help interpret the performance table, the legend below explains what each abbreviation and color coded box represents in the performance timeline.

To prevent confusion and double counting, information in this table is updated only once a tournament or the player's participation in the tournament has concluded. This table is current through the Open 13 tournament in Marseille, which ended 22 February 2009.

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James Blake

James Blake – Looking For Answers.jpg

Infobox last updated on: February 16, 2009.

James Riley Blake (born December 28, 1979 in Yonkers, New York, United States) is a professional tennis player and is currently the second highest ranked American, 11th in the world. Blake is known for his speed and powerful, flat forehand. He reached the final of the 2006 Tennis Masters Cup but lost to the then World No. 1 Roger Federer in straight sets, 6–0, 6–3, 6–4. On July 3, 2007, Blake's book, Breaking Back: How I Lost Everything and Won Back My Life, discussing his comeback after his unlucky 2004 season, was released and debuted at #22 on the New York Times Best Seller list. He wrote this book along with Andrew Friedman.

Blake was born in Yonkers, New York, United States to an African American father Thomas and a White British mother Betty. He has a brother, Thomas, who is also a professional tennis player, and three older half-brothers, Jason, Christopher, and Howard, and a half-sister, Michelle.

Blake started playing tennis at age five alongside his brother Thomas. When 13, he was diagnosed with severe scoliosis and for five years as a teenager, he was forced to wear a full-length back brace for 18 hours a day, though not while playing tennis. Blake attended Fairfield Warde High School (then called Fairfield High School), in Fairfield, Connecticut. A schoolmate and childhood friend was future musician John Mayer. Blake was inspired to pursue tennis after hearing his role model, Arthur Ashe, speak to the Harlem Junior Tennis Program. Brian Barker was his first (and current) coach. He left Harvard University after his sophomore year to pursue a career in professional tennis.

In January, Blake won the 2002 USTA Waikola Challenger in Hawaii. A month later, in Memphis, he posted his first win over a top-ten ranked opponent, Tommy Haas, who was then ranked fifth, and reached the finals, losing to Andy Roddick. He posted solid results over the summer, reaching the quarterfinals at the ATP Masters Series (AMS) event in Rome in May and then the finals at Newport in July.

In August, in Cincinnati, he won his first career ATP Tour title and his first ATP Masters Series title: it came in doubles with Todd Martin and it made Blake the first African-American male to win a title of any kind in Cincinnati's 101-year history. He was also the first African-American to reach a final in Cincinnati since 1969 when Arthur Ashe reached the doubles finals with Charlie Pasarell. The next week in Washington, he won his first ATP Tour singles title by beating Andre Agassi in the semifinals and Paradorn Srichaphan in the final.

At the U.S. Open, he reached the third round before falling to top-ranked Lleyton Hewitt in five sets. Lleyton Hewitt had once called James out on his ethnicity.

In 2003 his best results were a quarterfinal showing at AMS Indian Wells; a Round of 16 finish at the Australian Open, AMS Cincinnati and AMS Miami; a semifinal appearance at San Jose; and a finals appearance at Long Island.

The year of 2004 was an especially difficult year for Blake. While practicing with Robby Ginepri for the Masters event being held in Rome, he broke his neck when he slipped on the clay and collided with the net post. In July, his father died as a result of stomach cancer. At the same time, Blake developed zoster which temporarily paralyzed half his face and blurred his sight.

Blake's injuries and personal issues caused him to post relatively poor results for the first half of 2005, and by April his ranking was at No. 210. Blake made the decision to play the Challenger circuit, the "minor leagues" of tennis, in order to gain confidence and get more matches. In May, he entered Challenger events in Tunica, Mississippi, and Forest Hills, New York, and won both. He then rejoined the ATP circuit, and by August he was playing well enough to reach the final at the International Series event in Washington, D.C., where he fell to Roddick.

He was then given a wild card into AMS Cincinnati, where he drew Federer in the first round. The following week he entered and won the Pilot Pen Tennis tournament in New Haven, Connecticut, defeating Feliciano López in the final.

His efforts that summer helped him re-enter the ATP Top 50, and after New Haven he was ranked No. 49.

Blake then accepted a wildcard into the US Open, where he defeated No. 2 Rafael Nadal in the round of 32. In the round of 16, he beat Tommy Robredo in four sets to reach the quarterfinals where he succumbed to Andre Agassi in a memorable fifth-set tiebreak after winning the first two sets. He lost 3–6, 3–6, 6–3, 6–3, 7–6 (6).

In October at the Stockholm Open in Sweden, Blake won his third ATP tour title, defeating Srichaphan in the final. Blake finished 2005 ranked #22 in the world.

Blake started the year strong, winning the title at Sydney to take his fourth ATP tour title. He defeated Russian Igor Andreev in the final.

At the Australian Open he was seeded twentieth, and lost in the third round to Spaniard Tommy Robredo. Despite the loss, he cracked into the Top 20 for the first time in his career.

In March, he beat Hewitt in the final at Las Vegas for his fifth ATP tour title.

At the first AMS event of the year, Indian Wells, Blake defeated Robredo in the third round and world No. 2 Nadal in the semifinals to reach his first career ATP Masters Series singles final. He lost in the final to Federer, but by reaching the final, Blake became the first African-American man since Arthur Ashe to reach the world's top 10.

On clay, Blake defeated former world No. 1 Carlos Moyà in the first round at AMS Hamburg before losing to Mario Ančić in the third round.

At the French Open, he took down rising Spaniard Nicolas Almagro in four sets in the second round, to become the last remaining American man at the French. However, in the next round, he was beaten by Frenchman Gaël Monfils in five sets.

To start the grass court season, he made what many considered to be a surprising run at the Stella Artois Championships, defeating Andy Roddick in the semifinals before losing to Lleyton Hewitt in the final.

At Wimbledon, Blake progressed to the third round, but lost to Max Mirnyi in five sets.

Blake's first tournament after Wimbledon was at the International Series event at Indianapolis, and he went on to win the singles title by defeating Roddick (for the second time in 2006) in the final. Just by reaching the Indy final, Blake earned enough points to be ranked No. 5 in the world. He lost in the third round to Marat Safin in Washington, D.C., and in the first round in New Haven to Ruben Ramirez Hidalgo.

Blake did not enjoy as much success during the summer's biggest tournaments, losing in the second round to the eventual finalist in both of the summer ATP Masters Series events. At AMS Canada, he fell to Richard Gasquet (who would reach the final that week before losing to Roger Federer), and at AMS Cincinnati he lost to Juan Carlos Ferrero (who lost in the final to Andy Roddick).

At the U.S. Open, Blake reached the quarterfinals where he lost to top seed and defending champion Roger Federer. In that match, Blake managed to win his first set against Federer, winning the third set in a tiebreaker (11–9).

In his debut appearance at the Thailand Open in Bangkok, Blake won his seventh singles title, defeating Jarkko Nieminen in the quarterfinals, Marat Safin in the semifinals, and Ivan Ljubičić for the first time in the final.

Just two weeks later, Blake won his fifth title of 2006, successfully defending his 2005 title in Stockholm, by defeating Jarkko Nieminen in the final.

For the first time in his career, Blake qualified for the Tennis Masters Cup in Shanghai. Blake went 2–1 in the Gold Group, defeating world No. 2 Nadal and No. 3 Nikolay Davydenko, while losing to No. 6 Tommy Robredo. Blake qualified for the semifinals, where he steamrolled defending champion David Nalbandian, 6–4, 6–1. He went on to the final against Federer, but lost the match in straight sets, 6-0, 6-3, 6-4. Blake finished 2006 at a career-high World Number 4, and also finished the year as the highest-ranked American tennis player.

Blake won at the Sydney International for the second consecutive year. However, he then suffered a disappointing loss in the Round of 16 at the Australian Open, losing to tenth seed and eventual finalist Fernando González 7–5, 6–4, 7–6 (4). He followed that up with a loss to Tomáš Berdych in Davis Cup play and a second round loss in the SAP Open (San Jose) to #103 ranked Ivo Karlović.

At the 2007 Tennis Channel Open in Las Vegas, as the defending champion, he was involved with a deep controversy. It was one of the several tournaments experimenting with the new round robin format, and Blake had lost his first match to Evgeny Korolev. Korolev lost his other match to Juan Martín del Potro. In order for Blake to advance to the quarters, he had to defeat Del Potro in straight sets while losing five games or less. This would result in a three-way tie, with Blake losing the fewest games. With Blake leading 6–1 3–1, Del Potro retired. This eliminated Del Potro from the three-way tie as he failed to complete one of his matches. Korolev then moved on to the next round, breaking the tie because he had defeated Blake in their match.

That caused a big uproar among fans, James Blake, and commentators, as they felt James Blake deserved to advance. After a press conference of many hours, the ATP, led by Etienne de Villiers, decided that, since Blake would have met the guidelines the way the match was going, and since neither player knew the consequences of retiring (Del Potro said he would have finished the match had he known), Blake would have advanced anyway. They overruled the tournament guidelines, giving Blake a place in the quarterfinals.

The following morning, De Villiers reversed his reversal deeming that it was unfair to Korolev as you shouldn't change the rules in mid-tournament, regardless of what happened. As a result, Korolev re-advanced to the quarterfinals, sending Blake to Indian Wells without a 3rd consecutive title defense. Shortly after this incident, the ATP decided to cancel the round robin format, reverting any tournaments planning a round robin draw to the standard single-elimination draw.

Roland Garros 2007 was a disappointment for Blake, losing in the first round to Ivo Karlović 4–6 6–4 7–5 7–5. Blake was one of nine American men to lose in the first round of Roland Garros. This was the first time in the open era where an American male had not made it into a Grand Slam second round.

In Wimbledon 2007, James reached the third round, matching his best showing there (2006), but was unable to get past former World Number 1 Juan Carlos Ferrero, losing 3–6, 6–3, 6–3, 7–6.

During the summer hardcourt season, he advanced to his second career ATP Masters Series event and won a singles title. At AMS Cincinnati, he beat Alejandro Falla, Nicolas Kiefer, Juan Carlos Ferrero, Sam Querrey and Nikolay Davydenko en route to the final before falling to Roger Federer. He won the singles title at Penn Pilot in New Haven, CT, and started the North American hardcourt season by reaching the finals at Los Angeles, losing to Radek Štěpánek in three sets, 7–6, 5–7, 6–2 after having three set points in the first set.

In the second round of the 2007 U.S. Open, he won his first career five-set match against Fabrice Santoro, whom he defeated 6–4, 3–6, 6–2, 4–6, 6–4. Blake made it to the fourth round, where he lost to No. 10 Tommy Haas in five sets, 4–6, 6–4, 3–6, 6–0, 7–6(4), despite having match points in the fifth set.

Blake and the rest of the US Davis Cup team defeated Sweden in September to reach the finals against Russia.

Blake lost in the third round of Paris to Richard Gasquet and thus finished outside the top eight players, losing his chance to defend the points he gained as finalist in the 2006 Tennis Masters Cup.

James Blake won his match in the 2007 Davis Cup finals against Mikhail Youzhny, 6–3, 7–6, 6–7, 7–6 (and also against Dmitry Tursunov). Andy Roddick won his match versus Tursunov and Bob and Mike Bryan won the doubles rubber over Igor Andreev and Nikolay Davydenko, sealing the Davis Cup win for the United States.

James Blake began 2008 hoping to win his third consecutive Medibank International title. However, the defending champion bowed out of the tournament in the first round, losing to French veteran Fabrice Santoro 6–7(4), 2–6. The third seed (Blake) was said to be "uncharacteristic" in reference to his frustration.

At the Australian Open, Blake defeated his first round opponent, Chilean Nicolás Massú. He then defeated compatriot Michael Russell 6–3 6–2 6–2. In the third round, he fought back from two sets down to beat French veteran Sébastien Grosjean 4-6, 2-6, 6-0, 7-6(5), 6-2, who had beaten him in each of their three previous meetings.

In the fourth round, Blake beat Marin Čilić in three sets to advance to the quarterfinals, his best showing yet down under. In the quarterfinal, James Blake faced world No. 1 Roger Federer, and fell in straight sets, 7–5, 7–6(5), 6–4. Although out of the Australian Open, Blake's ranking jumped back into the Top 10 to No. 9 following his best performance in the tournament yet.

In Davis Cup, the USA played Austria on clay. James defeated Stefan Koubek in four sets (5–7, 7–5, 6–2, 6–2). Despite being down 2–5 in the second set, James turned things around, helped in part by unforced errors by Koubek.

In Delray Beach, James made it to the final for the second consecutive year, but fell to No. 244 Kei Nishikori of Japan in three sets in the final (6-3, 1-6, 4-6). At the 2008 SAP Open, he rebounded from that loss by defeating compatriot Sam Warburg in straight sets in the first round (6-3, 6-1) and Jesse Levine in straight sets in the second round (6-3, 6-4). However, he lost to Robby Ginepri (2-6, 2-6) on the following round.

At the 2008 Pacific Life Open, Blake, the ninth seed, received a "bye" in the first round, before defeating Marc Gicquel 6–3, 6–7(5), 6–1 in the second round. In the third round, Blake beat former world #1 Carlos Moyà 6–3, 6–4.. He then defeated Frenchman Richard Gasquet in the fourth round in straight sets 6–4, 6–2, before losing to Rafael Nadal in the quarterfinals 5–7, 6–3, 3–6.

At the 2008 Miami Masters, Blake reached the quarterfinals, but again lost to Rafael Nadal in three sets (6-3, 3-6, 1-6).

In Davis Cup, Team USA played France. Unfortunately for France, they were missing two of their best players, Richard Gasquet and Jo Wilfried Tsonga due to injuries. So Michaël Llodra and Paul-Henri Mathieu were the players playing singles for France. After Andy Roddick defeated Llodra, James would play Mathieu. James won in a three-hour, 48-minute, five-set match against the Frenchman, 7–6, 6–7, 6–3, 3–6, 7–5. He had to save two match points to defeat the number 12 Mathieu.

Blake then started the clay court season at the River Oaks International tournament in Houston, Texas. He defeated Kei Nishikori in the first round (6–4, 6–4), 15-year-old Ryan Harrison in the second round, No. 5 seed Agustín Calleri of Argentina in the quarterfinals, and Oscar Hernandez of Spain in the semifinals (6–3, 7–6(3)). In his second ATP final of the year and his first career clay-court final, Blake fell to Spaniard Marcel Granollers Pujol, 4–6, 6–1, 5–7.

James received a wild card to play in the clay tournament in Barcelona, Spain. However, he lost in the first round to German Denis Gremelmayr in straight sets.

Looking for a better performance on clay, James played in the Master Series tournament in Rome. He received a bye in the first round. In the second round, he faced Italian hopeful Andreas Seppi. James won in three sets 7–6, 3–6, 6–1. In the third round, he faced Spaniard Fernando Verdasco. He won in three sets 5–7, 7–5, 6–2. His run was ended in the quarterfinals by Stanislas Wawrinka of Switzerland in three sets 7-6, 6-7, 1-6.

At the French, he made it to the second round before being defeated by Ernests Gulbis in four sets. He fared no better at Wimbledon, losing in the 2nd round to the resurgent semi-finalist Rainer Schuettler in five sets, 3-6, 7-6(8), 6-4, 4-6, 4-6.

At the Cincinnati Masters, Blake lost to Ernests Gulbis 4-6, 6-1, 3-6 in the third round.

In August 2008, Blake represented the United States as one of its three men's singles tennis players in the Beijing Olympics. In the quarterfinals, he gained one of the biggest wins of his career with his first ever win over Roger Federer, 6-4 7-6(2). At the time, Federer was ranked as the world's No. 1 men's player. His semifinal match was against Fernando González, the Men's Singles bronze medalist at the 2004 Olympics in Athens. Blake had triple match point in the middle of the final set, but would go on to lose 4-6, 7-5, 11-9. He then lost in the bronze medal match to Serbian Novak Djokovic 4-6, 6-7(4).

In the US Open, Blake was stretched to a 5 set thriller against American teenager Donald Young 6-1, 3-6, 6-1, 4-6, 6-4 in the first round. Blake easily won his second round match after Steve Darcis retired, 4-6, 6-3, 1-0. Blake then lost to friend and fellow American Mardy Fish in the third round in straight sets 3-6, 3-6, 6-7(4).

In the Madrid Masters, Blake had a first round bye and played Gilles Simon losing it 6-3, 1-6, 4-6. Soon after, he played in the Davidoff Swiss Indoors tournament and made it all the way to the quarterfinals before losing to Feliciano Lopez of Spain 4-6, 6-7 (7). In the Paris Masters Blake got to the semis after a walkover by Roger Federer in the quarters and lost to Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France 4-6, 3-6. Because of this loss, Blake was not able to qualify for the year end Masters in Shanghai.

Blake participated in the Hopman Cup, an exhibition tournmanent partnering Meghann Shaughnessy. The team were the top seed, with Blake looking to win his third Hopman Cup. Blake lost to Slovak Dominik Hrbaty but defeated Nicolas Kiefer and Lleyton Hewitt.

Blake defeated Frank Dancevic 6-4, 6-3, 7-5 in the first round of the Australian Open. His success continued in the second round of the Australian Open after deposing of Frenchman Sebastien de Chaunac 6-3, 6-2, 6-3 in a match laden with spectator noise and bad line calls. Blake went on to face the 18th seed, Igor Andreev, in the third round and beat him 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 6-1. He lost in the fourth round in straight sets to the 2008 runner-up Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, 6-4, 6-4, 7-6(3).

In the SAP Open, Blake defeated fellow American Vincent Spadea 6-3, 6-4 in a first round match, hitting 12 aces and converted his two break point chances to race to the win in 50 minutes. Blake would go on to defeat Frenchman Florent Serra 6-4, 6-3. Blake prevailed in a 20-point first set tie-break against sixth-seeded compatriot Sam Querrey and then eased through the second set with one break of serve to post the 7-6(9), 6-3 victory in 67 minutes. He then lost to fellow American Mardy Fish 3-6, 2-6.

In his next tournament, the Regions Morgan Keenan Championships in Memphis, Tennessee, Blake was defeated in the first round by Lleyton Hewitt, 6-3, 1-6, 4-6.

Blake adopts an offensive baseline strategy which he achieves through his aggressive powerful forehands that are deep and flat. He undoubtedly possesses one of the strongest forehands on the tour. He is also an excellent returner of serve, he makes use of compact swings to aggressively return, reminiscent of Andre Agassi. His forehands, due to being flat and deep, offer little room for error when compared to high margin shots which employ topspin. Although, Blake can incorporate an all-court playing style by aiming his shots down the lines, or moving an opponent from side to side and proceeding to finish the point at the net by smash or volley. Blake is also noted for his exceptional court coverage, speed, and athleticism. He is noted for having incredible foot speed but lacking in footwork. His backhand has improved tremendously over the course of his career - what used to be considered a weakness has now become a powerful and reliable shot. He occasionally employs the slice backhand. He has been criticized for not having variety in his game, seeing as he will try to outhit his opponent on the baseline with raw power, rather than consistency.

Blake's style of play is best suited for hard courts as his flat shots tend to stay low and move quickly across the court; this approach is relatively ineffective on clay courts. Apart from winning hard court tournaments, Blake has made some considerable runs to the finals of grass and clay tournaments.

Blake worked with Prince to create a new racquet featuring Prince's O3 technology. The endeavor resulted in the Prince O3 Hybrid Tour. However, Blake did not feel comfortable with this racquet, or with the O3 technology. Blake ended his relationship with Prince. He switched to the Dunlop Aerogel 200 for Wimbledon which is characterized by its low power, 95 square inch head size, and a dense 18 x 20 string pattern. Blake said, "The new Aerogel racquet technology provides several frame specifications that will suit my game well and give me the confidence to know that I can take my career to new heights." His racquet is strung with Luxilon Big Banger Alu Power 16L String at a relatively high tension (60+ pounds). The high tension and dense string pattern are thought to help provide better control for his powerful strokes. In 2009, he started using the Dunlop 4D Aerogel 200.

His clothing sponsor is Fila, whom he started working with in 2009 after using Nike for most of his career.

Away from tennis, Blake also enjoys golf and basketball. He is a big fan of the New York Mets. Blake was featured on Bravo's second edition of Celebrity Poker Showdown, but got 2nd after losing to Maura Tierney.

He is also good friends with singer/songwriter John Mayer, who also attended Fairfield High School. When Blake was invited by Virginia's Anthem Insurance to do a cancer charity game honoring his late father, he invited John Mayer, Andy Roddick and Gavin DeGraw to perform.

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Pete Sampras

Pete Sampras in 2008

Infobox last updated on: July 5, 2008.

Petros "Pete" Sampras (born August 12, 1971, in Washington, D.C.) is a former World No. 1 tennis player from the United States of America. During his 15-year career, he won a record 14 Grand Slam men's singles titles (two Australian Open, seven Wimbledon, five US Open), and had a 203–38 win-loss record over 52 Grand Slam singles tournament appearances.

He debuted on the professional tour in 1988 and played his last top-level game in 2002. He was the year-end World No. 1 for six consecutive years (1993–1998), a record for the open era and tied for third all-time. His seven Wimbledon singles championships is a record shared with William Renshaw. His five US Open singles titles is an open era record shared with former World No. 1s Jimmy Connors and Roger Federer. He is considered to be one of the greatest players of all time. The American journalist and television sportscaster Bud Collins has named Sampras as one of the top five men's tennis players of all-time, and Tennis Magazine has named him the greatest tennis player from 1965 to 2005. On July 17, 2007, Sampras was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame.

Pete Sampras was born in Washington, D.C., and is the third son of Sammy and Georgia Sampras. His mother is a Greek immigrant, and his father is half Greek and half Italian. Greek culture played a big role in his upbringing, and Sampras attended Greek Orthodox Church on Sundays.

From an early age, Sampras showed signs of outstanding athletic ability. The young Sampras discovered a tennis racquet in the basement of his home and spent hours hitting balls against the wall. In 1978, the Sampras family moved to Palos Verdes, California, and the warmer climate there allowed seven-year-old Pete to play more tennis. From early on, his great idol was Rod Laver, and at 11 Sampras met and played with his idol. The Sampras family joined the Peninsula Racquet Club, and it was here that Sampras's talent became apparent. He was spotted by Peter Fischer, a pediatrician and tennis enthusiast, who coached Sampras until 1989. Fischer was responsible for converting Sampras's two-handed backhand to one-handed intending to increase Sampras' chances of winning Wimbledon.

Sampras turned professional in 1988, at the age of 16, and finished the year ranked World No. 97 after starting the year at World No. 893. His first professional match was a loss to Sammy Giammalva, Jr. at the February Ebel U.S. Pro Indoor in Philadelphia. But just one week later at the Lipton International Players Championships in Miami, Sampras defeated two top-40 players before losing to World No. 18 Emilio Sánchez. He did not defeat another top-40 player for almost six months, when he defeated World No. 39 Michiel Schapers at a US Open warm-up tournament in Rye Brook, New York. In his first Grand Slam singles match, Sampras lost to World No. 69 Jaime Yzaga of Peru in the first round of the US Open 6–7, 6–7, 6–4, 7–5, 6–2. Sampras did not advance past the quarterfinals in his next three tournaments, although he did record wins over World No. 79 Jim Courier, in their first career match-up, and World No. 8 Tim Mayotte.

The following year, Sampras slightly improved his ranking to a year-ending World No. 81. He lost in the first round of the 1989 Australian Open to Christian Saceanu and the first round of Wimbledon to Todd Woodbridge 7–5, 7–6, 5–7, 6–3. He won a Grand Slam singles match for the first time at the French Open before losing in the second round to Michael Chang 6–1, 6–1, 6–1 in their first career match-up. At the US Open, Sampras defeated defending champion and fifth-seeded Mats Wilander in the second round 5–7, 6–3, 1–6, 6–1, 6–4 before losing to World No. 13 Jay Berger in the fourth round. To end the year, Sampras lost in the first round of four consecutive tournaments.

Sampras finished 1990 at World No. 5 but began the year in Australia with a World No. 61 ranking. He lost to Wilander in the quarterfinals of the tournament in Sydney. At the Australian Open, Sampras upset twelfth-ranked Mayotte in the first round 7–6, 6–7, 4–6, 7–5, 12–10 before losing to thirteenth-ranked Yannick Noah in the fourth round in four sets. His first professional singles title came in February at the Ebel U.S. Pro Indoor in Philadelphia, where he defeated sixth-ranked Andre Agassi, eighth-ranked Mayotte, and eighteenth-ranked Andrés Gómez in the final. This title elevated his ranking into the top-20 for the first time. Sampras did not play the French Open and again lost in the first round of Wimbledon, this time to Christo Van Rensburg 7–6, 7–5, 7–6. Sampras played seven consecutive weeks during the North American summer hard court season. He defeated John McEnroe in the quarterfinals of the Canadian Open but then lost to Chang in the semifinals. He also reached the semifinals of the tournament in Los Angeles where he lost to World No. 2 Stefan Edberg. He did not advance past the quarterfinals in his next three tournaments, losing to Chang, Richey Reneberg, and Goran Ivanišević. In September, he captured his first Grand Slam title at the US Open. Along the way, he defeated sixth-ranked Thomas Muster in the fourth round and third-ranked Ivan Lendl in a five-set quarterfinal, breaking Lendl's streak of eight consecutive US Open finals. He then defeated 20th-ranked McEnroe in a four-set semifinal to set up a final with fourth-ranked Agassi. Sampras beat Agassi in straight sets to become the US Open's youngest-ever male singles champion at the age of 19 years and 28 days. He played five tournaments to complete the year, winning only the Grand Slam Cup.

Sampras in 1991 captured the first of his five career titles at the year-end Tennis Masters Cup. Upon entering the US Open as the defending champion that year, he caused controversy when, after losing in the quarterfinals to Jim Courier, Sampras said that he was not disappointed and felt relieved that the pressure to defend his title was no longer on him. This led to widespread criticism, which included disparaging remarks from Courier and Jimmy Connors.

In 1992, Sampras reached the quarterfinals of the French Open for the first of three consecutive years, made it to the Wimbledon semifinals, and was the runner-up at the US Open to Stefan Edberg. Sampras later stated that his loss in the US Open final that year was a "wake-up call" and that he needed to figure out how to become the World No. 1. He also played doubles with John McEnroe on the US team that won the Davis Cup, duplicating the feat in 1995.

Sampras reached the semifinals of the Australian Open in early 1993, and matched the previous year's quarterfinal performance at the French Open. In April 1993, Sampras attained the World No. 1 ranking for the first time. His rise to the No. 1 spot was controversial because he had not recently won any Grand Slam titles. But he justified the ranking three months later by claiming his first Wimbledon title, beating former World No. 1 Jim Courier in the final. This was swiftly followed by his second US Open title. He finished the year as the clear No. 1 and set a new ATP Tour record that year by becoming the first player to serve more than 1,000 aces in a season.

Sampras dominated Wimbledon for the rest of the decade, and won three consecutive titles from 1993 through 1995. He lost a 1996 quarterfinal match to Richard Krajicek, who won the title that year. Sampras, however, then won four consecutive titles from 1997 through 2000 to become the most successful male player in Wimbledon history. His victory in 2000 also broke Roy Emerson's record of 12 Grand Slam men's singles titles.

Sampras won two Australian Open titles. In 1994, he defeated American Todd Martin in the final, and in 1997, he defeated Carlos Moyà of Spain in the final. One of Sampras's most memorable matches there came in 1995 when he played Courier in the quarterfinals. Sampras's longtime coach and close friend, Tim Gullikson, had mysteriously collapsed during the tournament and was forced to return to the United States. Gullickson was later diagnosed with brain cancer to which he succumbed the following year. Saddened by Gullickson's illness, Sampras began visibly weeping during the match, but somehow managed to win. Sampras then lost the final to Agassi. Paul Annacone took over as Sampras's full time coach after Gullickson's illness made it impossible for him to continue coaching.

Sampras's best surface was undoubtedly the fast-playing grass courts. He was also known for his all-round game and strong competitive instinct. He won back-to-back US Open titles in 1995 and 1996. Sampras's only real weakness was on clay courts, where the slow surface tempered his natural attacking serve-and-volley game. His best performance at the French Open came in 1996, when he lost a semifinal match to the eventual winner, Yevgeny Kafelnikov. Despite his limited success at Roland Garros, Sampras did win some significant matches on clay. He won the prestigious Italian Open in 1994, defeating Boris Becker in the final, and two singles matches in the 1995 Davis Cup final against Russians Andrei Chesnokov and Kafelnikov in Moscow. Sampras also won a 1998 clay court tournament in Atlanta, defeating Jason Stoltenberg in the final.

He won his second Australian Open title in January, defeating Carlos Moyà in the final, and Wimbledon for the fourth time in July, defeating Cedric Pioline in the final. He also won singles titles in San Jose, Philadelphia, Cincinnati, Munich, and Paris and the ATP Tour World Championships in Hannover, Germany. He became the only player to win both the Grand Slam Cup and the ATP Tour World Championships in the same year. His title in Munich was his 50th overall title.

He had a career-best 10-1 win-loss record versus top 10 opponents and was undefeated in eight singles finals. He held the World No. 1 ranking for the entire year and joined Jimmy Connors (1974-1978) as the only male players to hold the year-end World No. 1 ranking for five consecutive years. His prize money earnings of US$6,498,211 for the year was a career high.

In 1998, Sampras's number-one ranking was challenged by Chilean player Marcelo Ríos. (In 1993, 1994, 1996, and 1997, Sampras had dominated the ATP tour.) Sampras failed to defend his Australian Open title, losing in the quarterfinals, and won Wimbledon only after a hard fought five-set victory over Goran Ivanišević. Sampras lost a five-set US Open semifinal to the eventual winner Patrick Rafter after suffering a leg injury in the third set while leading the match. He lost another semifinal at the Tennis Masters Cup. Nevertheless, Sampras finished the year as the top ranked player for the sixth year in a row.

1999 also started out disappointingly, as Sampras withdrew from the Australian Open and failed to win a title during the early part of the season. However, he then went on a 24-match winning streak, including the Stella Artois Championships, Wimbledon (equaling Roy Emerson's record of 12 Grand Slam singles titles), Los Angeles, and Cincinnati. That run ended when he was forced to retire from the RCA Championships and the US Open because of a herniated disc in his back. Sampras's ranking was hurt through a combination of withdrawing from the Australian and US Opens, tournaments in which he had strong performances during the previous year, and the resurgence of longtime rival Andre Agassi, putting an end to Sampras' six consecutive years of finishing as the World No. 1. Agassi took over the top ranking and held it for the rest of the season, but Sampras recovered and managed to beat him in the season-ending Tennis Masters Cup for the fifth and final time, enabling Sampras to place 3rd in the rankings.

Sampras reached the semifinals of the Australian Open in early 2000 (falling to the eventual champion Agassi in a five-set match), and won the Miami Masters tournament for the third time in March. He then won a record-breaking 13th Grand Slam title at Wimbledon, battling through a painful shin injury in the process. After this victory, Sampras did not win another title for two years. He lost in the final of the 2000 and 2001 US Open to Marat Safin and Lleyton Hewitt, respectively, leading many to speculate that Sampras would never capture another major title. At the 2001 Wimbledon Championships, Sampras lost to Roger Federer, who was 19 at the time, 7–6(7), 5–7, 6–4, 6–7(2), 7–5 in the fourth round, ending Sampras's 31-match winning streak at Wimbledon. The match also marked the first and only time that the two men ever played each other on the ATP tour.

In 2002, Sampras suffered another early exit from Wimbledon, losing in the second round to 145th ranked George Bastl of Switzerland, whose best surface was red clay. Sampras had a relatively poor summer leading up to the US Open. Greg Rusedski, whom Sampras had defeated in a long five-set third round match at the US Open, said that Sampras was "a step and a half slower" and predicted that Sampras would lose his next match. Sampras, however, then defeated two young and upcoming stars of the game, Tommy Haas in the fourth round and Andy Roddick in the quarterfinals. He then defeated Sjeng Schalken in the semifinals to reach his third straight US Open final. This time, he faced Agassi, whom he had met in his very first Grand Slam final 12 years earlier. After a four-set battle between the two veterans, Sampras claimed a record 14th Grand Slam singles title and matched Jimmy Connors's record of five US Open singles championships. The tournament was the last of Sampras's career.

Although he played no tour events in the following 12 months, Sampras did not officially announce his retirement until August 2003, just prior to the US Open. Sampras chose not to defend his title, but his retirement announcement was timed so that he could say farewell at a special ceremony organized for him at the open. After retirement, many regarded Sampras to be the greatest player of all time.

During his career, Sampras won 64 top-level singles titles (including 14 Grand Slams, 11 ATP Masters Series events, and five Tennis Masters Cup titles) and two doubles titles. He was ranked the World No. 1 for a record 286 weeks and was year-end No. 1 for a record six consecutive years from 1993 through 1998.

The rivalry between Agassi and Sampras was the dominant rivalry in men's tennis during the 1990s, with Sampras winning 20 of the 34 matches they played.

The rivalry actually started in their childhoods when they played each other in a 1979 tournament in Northridge, California at ages 8 and 9, respectively.

The 1990 US Open was their first meeting in a Grand Slam tournament final. Agassi was favored because he was ranked World No. 4 compared to the World No. 12 ranking of Sampras and because Agassi had defeated Sampras in their only previously completed match. However, Agassi lost the final to Sampras in straight sets.

The Sampras-Agassi rivalry reached its height in 1995. The two players traded the World No. 1 ranking several times that year, and each player agreed to participate in the Davis Cup only if the other also played. They were concerned that if one played while the other rested during the weeks leading up to the French Open, the one who rested would have a competitive advantage heading into the year's second Grand Slam event. Both ended up playing, and the U.S. won the Davis Cup that year. Notable Sampras-Agassi matches of 1995 included the finals of the Australian Open, the Newsweek Champions Cup, the Lipton International Players Championships, the Canadian Open, and the US Open, with Sampras winning the Newsweek Champions Cup and the US Open. The US Open was the highest-rated match among U.S. television audiences, as Agassi declared that it would decide the year-ending World No. 1 ranking.

The next time Sampras and Agassi met in a Grand Slam final was at Wimbledon in 1999, where Sampras won in straight sets. For both, it was considered a career rejuvenation, as Sampras had suffered a string of disappointments in the last year while Agassi was regaining his status as a top-ranked player after winning the French Open. Sampras forfeited the World No. 1 ranking to Agassi when injury forced Sampras to withdraw from that year's US Open. They faced each other twice in the season-ending ATP Tour World Championships, with Sampras losing the round robin match but winning the final.

They played each other only once in 2000. The top-ranked Agassi defeated World No. 3 Sampras in the semifinals of the Australian Open 6–4, 3–6, 6–7(7), 7–6(5), 6–1.

In arguably their most memorable match, Sampras defeated Agassi in the 2001 US Open quarterfinals 6–7(7), 7–6(2), 7–6(2), 7–6(5). There were no breaks of serve during the entire match. Reruns of the match are frequently featured on television, especially during US Open rain delays.

The second highest-rated match of their rivalry was the final of the 2002 US Open. It was their first meeting in a US Open final since 1995. The match also was notable because they had defeated several up-and-coming players en route to the final. Sampras had defeated World No. 3 Tommy Haas in the fourth round and future World No. 1 Andy Roddick in the quarterfinals while Agassi had defeated current World No. 1 Lleyton Hewitt in the semifinals. Sampras defeated Agassi 6–3, 6–4, 5–7, 6–4. This was the final ATP tour singles match of Sampras's career.

On April 6, 2006, 3 and a half years after his retirement, Sampras resurfaced and played his first exhibition match in River Oaks, Houston, Texas against 23 year old Robby Ginepri. Ginepri won the match 6–3, 7–6(10). Sampras would then later announce that he would be playing in World Team Tennis events.

2007 saw Sampras announcing that he would play in a few events on the Outback Champions Series, a group of tournaments for former ATP players who have met certain criteria during their careers. Sampras won his first two events on tour, defeating Todd Martin in both finals (one of which included Sampras's first trip to his ancestral homeland, Greece). Many observers noted that despite his lengthy layoff from competitive tournaments, Sampras still possessed many of the previous skills he had once displayed when he was on the ATP tour, with tennis legend John McEnroe going as far as to say that Sampras would be worthy of a top five seed at Wimbledon if he were to enter the tournament.

On November 20, 2007, Sampras lost the first of three exhibition matches in Asia against Roger Federer losing 6–4, 6–3 in Seoul, Korea. Two days later in Kuala Lumpur, Sampras again lost to Federer, 7–6(6), 7–6(5). However, Sampras was able to win the last match of the series, winning 7–6(6), 6–4, even though he stated his goal was to just win a set.

On February 18, 2008, in an exhibition match during the SAP Open, Sampras defeated another active player, former World No. 2 Tommy Haas. Sampras dispatched the German, 6–4, 6–2 in 43 minutes.

On March 10, 2008, Sampras played another exhibition match against World No. 1 Roger Federer at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Sampras once again lost the match 6–3, 6–7(4), 7–6(6).

Sampras was an all-court player who would often serve-and-volley. In the early years of his career, when not serving, his strategy was to be offensive from the baseline, put opponents in a defensive position, and finish points at the net. In his later years, he became even more offensive and would either employ a chip-and-charge strategy;just chip back the return and run up to the net, waiting for a volley or try to hit an offensive shot on the return and follow his return to the net.

He used both first and second serves as opportunities to win the point with one swing. The ability to strike quickly with an offensive serve was the key to his game. Indeed, the serve and Sampras are practically synonymous. As a serve-and-volleyer, he looked to capitalize on his delivery and move to net and attack. His second serve was the equal of many players' first and allowed him to be ultra-aggressive on his first offering. He had an effortless motion that incorporates every power source beginning with his feet pushing off the ground.

Sampras's classically smooth service motion gave him many easy points on aces or service winners. The keys to Sampras's serve was the height of his elbow in the back stretch position, the contact at full extension, the speed of the racquet head through the contact zone. The speed of his serves was frequently 120-140 mph (192-224 km/h)on 1st and 100–120 mph (160-192 km/h) on second serves. Sometimes, however Sampras's second serve traveled faster than his first serve, usually producing an ace from a weary opponent. is considered by many to have had the best second serve in history. He was known for producing aces on critical points, even with his second serves. He had an accurate and powerful first serve, one of the best of all time; His second serve was nearly as powerful as his first, possibly his most dangerous weapon. He had great disguise on both his first and second serves.

Return of Serve Because he held serve at such a high percentage, he could be opportunistic with his return game. Depending on the situation, he would vary his return of serve. Against a good server, he usually looked to block or chip his return with an abbreviated swing on first serves to get the point started. But on second serves he'd be more aggressive, going after his forehand or slicing his backhand and attacking the net. To get a forehand on the ad side, he positioned himself in the doubles alley just as his opponent started his delivery.

Forehand This was a weapon that put his opponent on the extreme defensive or won the point outright. He held the racquet with an Eastern Forehand grip, which allowed him to hit flat, penetrating drives to the corners of the court. He could put more topspin on the ball if he desired, but that wasn't his style. He wanted to draw a mid-court shot (an opportunity ball) from his opponent and then punish it to either corner and follow it to net. His forehand, and in particular his "Running Forehand" (a forehand hit on the run), was considered the best in the world. He was known for hitting his Running Forehand with a Reverse Forehand, a shot in which the racket rises on a much more vertical plane and finishes with the entire instrument above the player's head and pointing backward.

Backhand With his one-hander, he could drive the ball flat, slice it, or roll it with topspin. The stroke also provided great flexibility for his attacking game. At a young age, he switched from a two-handed to a one-handed backhand with an Eastern Backhand grip. This was done to help his transition game and make him an all-court player. Although not the weapon his forehand was, his backhand kept him in the rally from the baseline and could deliver the goods on passes or carve out specialty shots when needed. Over the years, he developed an effective slice that changed the pace of a rally or he used to approach the net.

Opponents frequently played to his backhand, which was considered to be his weaker side. To counter this, Sampras often camped on the backhand side while rallying from the baseline and often baited opponents for his great running forehand. Later on in his career, as his foot speed slightly declined, Sampras was forced to play closer to the center of the court.

Net Game He had every volley in the book and set them up with his huge serves and approach shots. His volley technique is flawless. He could hurt you with high, half, and shoestring volleys, and he had a devastating overhead. With his firm hold on his Continental grip and an upright racquet head, he used his athleticism to smother the net and was rarely caught out of position. He was also very smart with his shot selection at net, always cutting down the passing lanes and anticipating his opponent's next move. If he didn't have a clear putaway, he'd volley straight ahead, forcing his opponent to create a difficult angle. His overhead smash is regarded as the greatest of all time, as he could hit it from almost any position for a winner.

Strategy The consummate front-runner, he came into a match with the mind-set that if he was never behind, he wouldn't lose. When he was playing his best, he was forcing his opponent to catch up in the points. He used his big shots and athleticism to close in on the net and finish points quickly. If he happened to get behind in the point, he'd look for a shot (like his running forehand) that would immediately grab the momentum back. It was the same with the match as a whole. All Sampras wanted was that one service break a set and then he could cruise. He had so much confidence in his serve that he believed he could hold it every time. And if he couldn't find the break during the set, he felt he'd get a mini-break during the tiebreaker. His relaxed intensity and big serve have allowed him to handle the big points better than any player ever has.

Grass Courts On grass, the serves retain more of their speed when they hit the service box and bounce relatively lower than on any other surface. This significantly improved Sampras' single biggest advantage. That was certainly the case at Wimbledon, where Sampras's second serve was almost unreturnable and the more worn the grass got the better it was for Sampras. In addition, his one-two punch was considered the best in the world. On grass courts, Sampras served and volleyed on both serves throughout his career.

His secondary advantage was his net game because it's important to move in after the serve and win the point with a volley or overhead from the short/mid-court ball. One of Sampras's major advantages on grass was that points were kept short: this allowed him to play long matches without the same fatigue he'd feel on clay courts or hard courts.

Another advantage Sampras had was that on grass the ball bounces around knee height, his most comfortable strike zone. This also turned his backhand into a lethal weapon due to his particular stroke. The additional advantage Sampras had was the comparative flatness of his groundstrokes. He did hit topspin on both sides, but not nearly as much as a typical clay-court specialist. His lower, flatter groundstrokes had more power and penetrated the court much more quickly than his opponents' shots could. This took away much of their reaction time, often forcing opponents to try and run even before he hit the stroke.

Hard Courts His style changed dramatically between the early 1990s and the time he retired. He served and volleyed on his first serve and frequently stayed back on his second serve. Towards the latter part of his career on hard courts, Sampras played a serve and volley game on both his first and second serves.

Clay Courts On clay, serves slow down more when they hit the service box than on any other surface. This reduced Sampras' single biggest advantage. The other difficulty for Sampras was that the topspinning shots caused the ball to kick up high and he was less comfortable meeting the ball up high, especially on his backhand. His backhand was a world-class shot, but because of his grip and technique, he preferred to hit the ball lower. When the ball really kicked high he struggled and he often dropped the ball short and into the centre of the court.

Another factor that made it tough for Sampras on clay was the comparative flatness of his groundstrokes. He did hit topspin on both sides, but not nearly as much as a typical clay-court specialist. Lower, flatter groundstrokes slow down relatively more on clay than do those with more topspin, and they don't kick up above the opponent's comfort zone the way higher, heavy topspins do.

Sampras's older sister Stella is the women's tennis head coach at UCLA, and his younger sister, Marion, is a teacher in Los Angeles. His older brother, Gus, has been tournament director at the Scottsdale ATP event, but from 2007 he became president of the firm managing Pete's business activities.

On September 30, 2000, Sampras married American actress and former Miss Teen USA Bridgette Wilson. On November 21, 2002, their son Christian Charles was born. On July 29, 2005, the couple welcomed their second son, Ryan Nikolaos.

Sampras has thalassemia minor, a genetic trait that sometimes causes a mild anemia.

Note: Tournaments were designated as the 'Masters Series' only after the ATP took over the running of the men's tour in 1990.

1This event was held in Stockholm through 1994, Essen in 1995, and Stuttgart from 1996 through 2001.

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Source : Wikipedia