Tennis  

It is a European affair

Croatia’s Marin Cilic celebrates winning his men’s singles second round match against Stefan Kozlov of the US at the ATP Aegon Championships tennis tournament at the Queen’s Club in west London on June 22, 2017. Marin Cilic beat Stefan Kozlov 6-0, 6-4. GLYN KIRK / AFP

As the two major preparatory tournaments grind towards their conclusion in London and Halle, it is an all-continental Europe show. The absence of Andy Murray adds a greater symbolism at a time the political leadership of Great Britain commences details of pulling out from the European Union. Sports are indeed a reflection of life.

With an earlier start for the quarterfinals, as Europe is one hour ahead, the first result came from Queens Club. Croatia’s Marin Cilic continued his impressive march by defeating American southpaw, Donald Young, in two sets, 6/4; 7/5. It was followed by a similar result when Luxembourg’s Guilles Muller won 6/4; 7/5 by surviving the power of American Sam Querrey. In the third match-up, Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov overpowered the 21-year-old Russian, Daniil Medvedev.

In Germany, the quarterfinals of the Gerry Weber Open, the frist match featured Russia’s Karen Khachanov, who defeated promising compatriot Andrey Rublev in three sets 7/6; 4/6; 6/3. The uprising Rublev has acquitted himself well in this year’s grass court tournaments.

In the second match, the streak of Netherland’s Robin Haase was halted by talented Frenchman Richard Gasquet, 6/1; 3/6; 6/1. Haase had defeated Roger Federer in the preceding the Stuttgart event fortnight ago and also dismissed Dominic Thiem of Austria, in the previous round.

In the quarterfinal match in Halle, Roger Federer held his opening serve and took his opponent’s service in the fourth game to extend the lead 4-0. The set ended routinely 6-3. Mayer held his serve in the second set opener. Both players held on to serves but one break handed Roger Federer the match and a spot in the semifinals. It was a contest of old gladiators; between the 35-year-old Federer and 33-year-old Mayer.

The awaited match of the day in Halle is the clash between Germany’s Alexander Zverev and Spain’s dogged player Roberto Bautista Agut. In London, Tomas Berdych of Czech Republic will exchange powerful shots with Spain’s Feliciano Lopez, who has a great career track record on grass courts.

The event in Halle Germany sustained the generation rivalry in the game. The long-playing career of Swiss Federer and German Mayer harmonizes with the history of the Gerry Weber event, which started in 1993; on the sponsorship of a business tycoon with a passion for the game. As has happened with the origin of professional tennis by Lamar Hunt the Texas oil billionaire, Weber established the event with his fortune and involved the residents of the town who now have great pride that Halle is recognized in the global map, for tennis. This has guaranteed their total commitment to constant improvement, based on the German saying: “Um gut zu bleiben, muss Mann taglich besser werden.” To remain good a person must become better every day!



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