Osaka back to No. 2; Medvedev No. 3; Karatsev jumps 72 spots
(AP Photo/Hamish Blair)Naomi Osaka's Australian Open championship moved her up one spot to No. 2 in the WTA rankings Monday, while men's finalist Daniil Medvedev rose to a career-best No. Aslan Karatsev's historic run from qualifying to the final four before losing to nine-time Australian Open champion Djokovic allowed him to vault 72 places from 114th to 42nd. Barty took nearly a full year off, for example, but still has her points from winning the 2019 French Open and reaching the semifinals at the 2020 Australian Open. Aryna Sabalenka now leads the WTA doubles rankings after pairing with Elise Mertens to win the Australian Open women's doubles title.
Hard quarantine didn't stop Brady in Australia; Osaka did
Japan's Naomi Osaka, right, holds the Daphne Akhurst Memorial Cup after defeating United States Jennifer Brady, left, in the women's singles final at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Saturday, Feb. 20, 2021. The 25-year-old American won't be leaving with the Australian Open title after losing to Naomi Osaka 6-4, 6-3 on Saturday. “I mean, I made my first Grand Slam final. Her Grand Slam record was 15-14, and her overall tour-level mark as a pro was below .500, at 54-57. “I don’t think, you know, she’s God,” Brady said about Osaka, who is now a four-time major champion at age 23.
4 for 4: Osaka wins Australian, stays perfect in Slam finals
Japan's Naomi Osaka holds the Daphne Akhurst Memorial Cup aloft defeating United States Jennifer Brady in the women's singles final at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Saturday, Feb. 20, 2021. Osaka improved to 4-0 in Grand Slam finals by grabbing six consecutive games to pull away in what initially was a tight contest, beating Brady 6-4, 6-3 at Melbourne Park on Saturday. For me, I feel like every opportunity that I play a Slam is an opportunity to win a Slam,” said the 23-year-old Osaka, who will move up to No. I think if you’re not feeling OK, it’s OK to not feel OK,” Osaka said. And as much as Osaka makes plain that she wants to keep adding to her Grand Slam collection, there are larger goals, too.
The Latest: Krejcikova, Ram win 2nd Australian mixed title
(AP Photo/Hamish Blair)MELBOURNE – The Latest on the Australian Open tennis tournament (all times local):10:55 p.m.Barbora Krejcikova and Rajeev Ram have combined for their second Australian Open mixed doubles title in three years with a 6-1, 6-4 win over Sam Stosur and Matthew Ebden in the championship match. Krejcikova and fellow Czech Katerina Siniakova lost the women’s doubles final on Friday to Elise Mertens and Aryna Sabalenka. He and Joe Salisbury will attempt to defend their Australian Open doubles title in Sunday’s final against Ivan Dodig and Filip Polasek. ___9:03 p.m.Naomi Osaka has won her fourth Grand Slam title by pulling away to beat Jennifer Brady 6-4, 6-3 in the Australian Open final. She is 3-0 in previous Grand Slam finals, winning the Australian Open in 2019 and the U.S. Open in 2018 and 2020.
Osaka eyes 4th Slam title in Australian Open final vs Brady
Japan's Naomi Osaka, left, is congratulated by United States' Serena Williams after winning their semifinal match at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021. Sure, it’s clearly possible that Osaka could be beaten by the 22nd-seeded American Jennifer Brady in the title match at Melbourne Park on Saturday. She pushed Osaka to three sets before losing to her in the U.S. Open semifinals last September, then shrugged off a two-week hard quarantine in Australia to reach her first Grand Slam final. Who is seeking her second Australian Open title and fourth Slam trophy — and she is still only 23. Osaka often speaks about wanting more consistency, whether that's at lower-level WTA tournaments or at every Grand Slam event.
Jennifer Brady into 1st Grand Slam final at Australian Open
United States' Jennifer Brady celebrates after defeating Karolina Muchova of the Czech Republic in their semifinal match at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021. Serving for the win against Karolina Muchova in the Australian Open semifinals, Brady needed to get through an 18-point game to close things out. I have earned the right to be sitting here, to be playing in a final," Brady said. Watching a Grand Slam final, you look at two players and you’re, like, ‘Wow, that’s awesome that they’re in the final.' Actually, Brady thinks that could have been a help, because it forced her to “reset mentally,” she explained, and rest her body and mind.
Serena stopped: Osaka beats Williams in Australian Open SF
United States' Serena Williams reacts during a press conference following her semifinal loss to Japan's Naomi Osaka at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021. On Saturday, at 7:30 p.m. local time (3:30 a.m. EST), Osaka will meet first-time Grand Slam finalist Jennifer Brady of the United States for the championship. “My heart is racing.”She lost to Osaka in a three-set thriller in the U.S. Open semifinals last September. That stage hasn't been a problem for top-ranked Novak Djokovic, who has won 14 of his last semifinals at Grand Slam events. Djokovic is seeking a ninth Australian Open title and 18th Grand Slam trophy overall.
The Latest: Djokovic into Australian Open final for 9th time
All rights reservedMELBOURNE – The Latest on the Australian Open (all times local):9:45 p.m.Novak Djokovic reached the Australian Open final for the ninth time by beating No. ___7 p.m.Barbora Krejcikova has set up a shot at an Australian Open doubles double over the next couple of days. ___3:35 p.m.Naomi Osaka has stopped Serena Williams’ latest bid for a record-tying 24th Grand Slam singles title in the Australian Open semifinals. The 23-year-old Osaka also won last year's U.S. Open and the 2019 Australian Open. Djokovic is seeking a ninth Australian Open title and 18th Grand Slam trophy overall.
223-2: Nadal blows 2-set lead against Tsitsipas in Australia
Spain's Rafael Nadal reacts after winning a point against Greece's Stefanos Tsitsipas during their quarterfinal match at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2021. (AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)MELBOURNE – Rafael Nadal entered his Australian Open quarterfinal with a 223-1 record when grabbing the first two sets of a Grand Slam match. Neither Tsitsipas nor Medvedev has won a Grand Slam tournament. 1-ranked Novak Djokovic will face 114th-ranked qualifier Aslan Karatsev, who is making his Grand Slam debut. It looked like it could be a repeat of their 2019 semifinal in Australia, when Nadal overwhelmed Tsitsipas and allowed him to win just six games.
Muchova upsets Barty and will face Brady in Australian semis
Karolina Muchova of the Czech Republic receives medical treatment during her quarterfinal against Australia's Ash Barty at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2021. (AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)MELBOURNE – Top-ranked Ash Barty built a big lead in the Australian Open quarterfinals before her opponent took a medical timeout and left the court. Brady reached her second Grand Slam semifinal, following a run that far at the U.S. Open in September. Muchova played poorly at the start of her second major quarterfinal, and Barty raced to a 5-0 lead while losing only six points. This was the first Grand Slam tournament since last year's Australian Open to permit thousands of people to sit in the stands.
The Latest: Nadal loses to Tsitsipas in 5 at Australian Open
(AP Photo/Hamish Blair)MELBOURNE – The Latest on Day 10 of the Australian Open (all times local):11:55 p.m.Rafael Nadal’s bid for a men’s-record 21st Grand Slam title has ended with a five-set loss to Stefanos Tsitsipas in the Australian Open quarterfinals. He has been pushed to a fifth set by Stefanos Tsitsipas in the Australian Open quarterfinals. ___10 p.m.Rafael Nadal's Grand Slam set streak has ended at 35 after he dropped one against Stefanos Tsitsipas in the Australian Open quarterfinals. The pair were teammates when Russia won the ATP Cup team event on the eve of the Australian Open. Kenin lost to Kaia Kanepi in straight sets in the second round of her title defense at the Australian Open last week.
Daughter of Bills, Sabres owners into all-US QF in Australia
United States' Jessica Pegula celebrates after defeating Ukraine's Elina Svitolina in their fourth round match at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Monday, Feb. 15, 2021. “I’m just happy I’m here; she's been playing some good tennis, solidifying herself as a top player.”AdThe 61st-ranked Pegula beat No. “A lot of people were complaining, and I told myself I wasn’t going to complain,” Brady said. Also on that half of the draw, Rafael Nadal moved closer to a men's-record 21st Grand Slam trophy by overwhelming No. “I’m super excited for her making her first Grand Slam quarterfinal.
Medvedev in 5, finally, advances to 4th round in Australia
Russia's Daniil Medvedev gestures after defeating Serbia's Filip Krajinovic in their third round match at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Saturday, Feb. 13, 2021. (AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)MELBOURNE – Daniil Medvedev finally worked out how to a win a five-setter. The fourth-seeded Medvedev was 0-6 in Grand Slam matches that went to five sets, and his Australian Open third-round match against No. here I was really calm to finish the match," Medvedev said. Medvedev, the U.S. Open finalist last year, will next play McDonald, a player he compared with Roger Federer in style.
The Latest: Greek player tested negative in Australia
(AP Photo/Hamish Blair)MELBOURNE – The Latest from the Australian Open (all times local):12:45 a.m.Australian Open organizers say the player from Greece’s ATP Cup team who tested positive for COVID-19 on arrival in South Africa had returned a negative result the day he left Melbourne. Michail Pervolarakis played in the Greek team with Stefanos Tsitsipas last week in one of the six tuneup tournaments for the Australian Open. The Australian Broadcasting Corp. reported that Tennis Australia confirmed Pervolarakis tested negative for the coronavirus on Feb. 9. He reached the fourth round at Melbourne Park for the 14th time in 16 trips. The top-seeded Australian beat Ekaterina Alexandrova of Russia 6-2, 6-4 to reach the fourth round of the Australian Open for the third straight year.
Feeling pressure: 2020 champ Kenin loses at Australian Open
United States' Sofia Kenin leaves the court following her second round loss to Estonia's Kaia Kanepi during at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Thursday, Feb. 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Rick Rycroft)MELBOURNE – Sofia Kenin knew this would be a tough test at the Australian Open, a potentially early end to her first attempt to defend a Grand Slam title. Upon realizing she probably would be playing big-hitting veteran Kaia Kanepi in the second round, Kenin acknowledged, she “maybe kind of broke down a little bit.”Kenin was right to be worried. Kenin walked off the court crying after a 6-2, 6-2 loss last week in a tuneup event at the site of the Australian Open and explained afterward that her left leg was sore. 21 Alex de Minaur and Mackenzie McDonald, who beat 22nd-seeded Borna Coric 6-4, 6-2, 4-6, 6-4, and 39-year-old Feliciano Lopez.
'Bad timing and bad luck': Injured Serena out of French Open
“If it was my knee, that would be more really devastating for me. I feel like my body is actually doing really, really well,” said Williams, who turned 39 on Saturday. “That’s disappointing on many levels, of course,” said John Isner, the 21st-seeded man who was beaten in four sets by 20-year-old American qualifier Sebastian Korda. Williams took a long pause, clutched at that leg and then took a medical timeout so a trainer could wrap it. “I’m so close to some things, I just feel like I’m almost there," she said, "so I think that’s what keeps me going.”___AP Tennis Writer Fendrich reported from Washington; AP Sports Writer Pugmire reported from Paris.
Mladenovic pins French meltdown on US Open lockdown, no-call
France's Kristina Mladenovic plays a shot against Germany's Laura Siegemund in the first round match of the French Open tennis tournament at the Roland Garros stadium in Paris, France, Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020. (AP Photo/Michel Euler)PARIS – Kristina Mladenovic blamed her French Open meltdown on her U.S. Open lockdown — and she wasn’t too pleased about a no-call on a double bounce that helped her opponent avoid ceding the first set Wednesday, either. Mladenovic was furious that chair umpire Eva Asderaki didn’t spot the extra bounce that came during a 10-stroke exchange. “If she would have done it, she would have all my respect and be super fair play,” Mladenovic said. “It’s brutal for the body when you (have) eight days (of) lockdown in a hotel room,” Mladenovic said Wednesday.
DQ forgotten, Djokovic leaves French Open foe 'suffocated'
Serbia's Novak Djokovic reacts after missing a shot against Sweden's Mikael Ymer in the first round match of the French Open tennis tournament at the Roland Garros stadium in Paris, France, Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020. “Winning a 6-love first set is the best possible way to start a Grand Slam," he said. With Dominic Thiem, the U.S. Open champion and two-time French Open runner-up, watching from the stands in a black winter coat, Djokovic broke Ymer nine times and ended up with a 32-12 edge in total winners. Others feeling that way on Day 3 at the year’s last Grand Slam tournament included No. Tsitsipas trailed Jaume Munar before advancing 4-6, 2-6, 6-1, 6-4, 6-4, while Rublev knelt on court and covered his face with his hands after turning things around to beat Sam Querrey 6-7 (5), 6-7 (4), 7-5, 6-4, 6-3.
Clipped wings: Virus turns tennis pros' flights into ordeals
Jennifer Brady of the U.S. prepares to serve against Denmark's Clara Tauson in the first round match of the French Open tennis tournament at the Roland Garros stadium in Paris, France, Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020. But tennis players cannot home-work. And so, as now-rare world travelers, they've also become unwitting first-hand witnesses of how the pandemic is battering the airline industry. But the novelty wore off after near-constant flying became part of her tennis job, until “I really didn't like it, especially long-haul." “The best thing during the lockdown was that I didn’t have to go on the plane.”___More AP tennis: https://apnews.com/apf-Tennis and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
The Latest: Osaka, Azarenka set for US Open women's final
Victoria Azarenka, of Belarus, reacts after defeating Serena Williams, of the United States, during a semifinal match of the US Open tennis championships, Thursday, Sept. 10, 2020, in New York. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)NEW YORK – The Latest on on the U.S. Open tennis tournament (all times local):___3:30 p.m.Naomi Osaka and Victoria Azarenka were supposed to play two weeks ago in Flushing Meadows. Osaka and Azarenka will meet in the U.S. Open women's final, with the winner earning her third Grand Slam singles title. She went on to win another in 2019 at the Australian Open, a title Azarenka won twice. Azarenka won that tournament, normally held in Ohio but moved because of the coronavirus pandemic, when Osaka had to pull out of the final with a hamstring injury.
Helped by net, bad call, Osaka gets past Brady in US Open SF
And now Osaka, still just 22, is one victory away from a third Grand Slam title. Osaka served at up to 120 mph; Brady reached 117 mph. That’s when, at 2-1 in the third set, Osaka earned her first break point with a backhand that clipped the net tape and trickled over. In the second set, though, it was Osaka who blinked, and Brady who collected the first break of the evening. Heady stuff for Brady, a 25-year-old from Pennsylvania who never had been past the fourth round of a Grand Slam tournament before this week.
The Latest: Osaka begins US Open semifinal vs Brady
Naomi Osaka, of Japan, walks on the court before playing Jennifer Brady, of the United States, during a semifinal match of the US Open tennis championships, Thursday, Sept. 10, 2020, in New York. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)NEW YORK – The Latest on the U.S. Open tennis tournament (all times local):___Naomi Osaka is trying to return to the U.S. Open women's final, facing first-time Grand Slam semifinalist Jennifer Brady. Osaka was the 2018 champion at Flushing Meadows and followed that up by winning the Australian Open the next January. Pavic’s lob winner produced another break to give his team a 4-2 lead in the final set, and he served out the match at love. Naomi Osaka will play American Jennifer Brady in the first women's semifinal, and Serena Williams will take on Victoria Azarenka.
The Latest: American Brady advances to US Open semifinals
Jennifer Brady, of the United States, serves to Yulia Putintseva, of Kazakhstan, during the quarterfinals of the US Open tennis championships, Tuesday, Sept. 8, 2020, in New York. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)NEW YORK The Latest on the U.S. Open tennis tournament (all times EDT):___1:30 p.m.American Jennifer Brady has become this year's first U.S. Open semifinalist by beating Yulia Putintseva 6-3, 6-2. The quarterfinals at the U.S. Open are underway, with American Jennifer Brady facing No. Brady, seeded 28th, is the first former college player to reach the women's quarterfinals at the Open since Gigi Fernandez in 1994. In the other women's match Tuesday, two-time major champion Naomi Osaka will play American Shelby Rogers, who is ranked 93rd.
American Jennifer Brady reaches 1st major semifinal at Open
Jennifer Brady, of the United States, reacts after defeating Yulia Putintseva, of Kazakhstan, during the quarterfinals of the US Open tennis championships, Tuesday, Sept. 8, 2020, in New York. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)NEW YORK American Jennifer Brady said she was nervous at the start of her first career Grand Slam quarterfinal, but it didn't show. Brady notched the biggest victory yet in her breakout run at the U.S. Open, beating Yulia Putintseva of Kazakhstan on Tuesday, 6-3, 6-2. Brady, 25, is playing in her 13th Grand Slam event and is seeded in a major tournament for the first time. The last couple of times I played her, I got caught in playing her game, Brady said.
The Latest: Jennifer Brady reaches 1st US Open quarterfinal
Jennifer Brady, of the United States, serves to Angelique Kerber, of Germany, during the fourth round of the US Open tennis championships, Sunday, Sept. 6, 2020, in New York. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)NEW YORK The Latest on the U.S. Open tennis tournament (all times local):12:45 p.m.Jennifer Brady has extended her dominant showing at the U.S. Open and reached the quarterfinals for the first time. The hard-hitting, 25-year-old Brady knocked off Angelique Kerber 6-1, 6-4 in the opening match Sunday. Brady, who is one of four American women still alive in singles, will face either Petra Martic or Yulia Putintseva in her first Grand Slam quarterfinal match. The day begins with Angelique Kerber a three-time Grand Slam champion who won at Flushing Meadows in 2016 trying to extend her strong run through the bracket, facing 28th-seeded Jennifer Brady.
Osaka tosses racket, overcomes test from teenager at US Open
Naomi Osaka, of Japan, serves to Marta Kostyuk, of the Ukraine, during the third round of the US Open tennis championships, Friday, Sept. 4, 2020, in New York. Another past U.S. Open champion moving into the fourth round Friday was 2016 titlist Angelique Kerber, who defeated 20-year-old American Ann Li 6-3, 6-4. Kerbers next opponent is another American, 28th-seeded Jennifer Brady, a 6-3, 6-3 winner against Caroline Garcia. The key moment: Kostyuk held five break points that could have given her a 3-1 lead in the final set. Each time on court during the tournament, Osaka is wearing a different mask in memory of a victim of racial injustice.
Jennifer Brady preps for US Open by winning 1st tour title
Jennifer Brady holds the championship trophy after defeating Jil Belen Teichmann in the WTA tennis tournament championship match in Nicholasville, Ky., Sunday, Aug. 16, 2020. Brady won 6-3, 6-4 on the way to her first WTA title. Maybe I wasn't using my legs enough ... or the toss was coming a little bit to the left. A little bit of everything, said Brady, who eliminated 16-year-old Coco Gauff in the semifinals. I put a little bit more expectations on myself to perform well, so I was getting a little bit frustrated.