Busted Racquet

  • Nick Kyrgios yells at fans, throws tantrum at Shanghai Masters

    Jay Busbee at Busted Racquet 10 days ago

    Nick Kyrgios had a bad day at the office, losing in straight sets to Mischa Zverev at the Shanghai Masters. But Kyrgios turned an ugly 6-3, 6-1 loss into an international story by fighting with both the chair umpire and fans and tapping out early in several games.

    Long known for an explosive temper, Kyrgios, ranked No. 14, didn’t take long to go off the rails against the 110th-ranked Zverev. In the match’s fifth game, en route to going down 1-4, Kyrgios dinked a dismissive serve that a child could have returned:

    Nick Kyrgios: Tank mode ON #NextGen pic.twitter.com/KyXa16Fwtj

    — Ardeal (@UnArdeal) October 12, 2016

    That earned him a rebuke from the chair. Early in the second set, he walked off the court before one of Zverev’s game-winning serves even landed. That set the restless crowd alight, and Kyrgios began yapping with fans. As the match wound to its inevitable close, one fan began shouting for Kyrgios to “respect the game” and “respect the people.”

  • Maria Sharapova's doping ban cut from two years to 15 months

    Jay Busbee at Busted Racquet 18 days ago

    Former World No. 1 Maria Sharapova’s ban from tennis for doping violations has been reduced from two years to 15 months, and will now end on April 25, 2017.

    Sharapova announced in March that she had failed a drug test at the Australian Open. She had been taking Meldonium since 2006, and continued to do so after the substance was added to a banned list earlier this year. Sharapova contended that she had done so because she had simply ignored emails from the World Anti-Doping Association noting the drug’s new designation.

    “I don’t want to end my career this way,” Sharapova said at the time she revealed her positive test. “I really hope I will be given another chance to play this game.” It appears she will get that chance.

  • Rafael Nadal stops tennis match as mother searches for lost child in crowd

    Jay Hart at Busted Racquet 23 days ago

    There’s something about this that makes you just tear up. Maybe it’s the parent in you (if you are a parent) or maybe, in a time when the world seems to be at its own throat, you witness a moment when everyone is on the same side.

    A mother looking for her child. A child desperate to find her mother. And everyone around them, including Rafael Nadal who’s supposed to be concentrating on the player on the other side of the net, realizing that their reunion is more important than anything else.

    This took place Wednesday during an exhibition match in Nadal’s native Mallorca. Partnered with a teenager named Simon Solbas, and squaring off against Carlos Moya and John McEnroe, Nadal was on serve when a commotion in the crowd (that would normally halt as play resumes) didn’t stop. And rightfully so.

    Nadal stopped, the crowd did too, and mother and daughter were reunited.

  • Serena Williams on race in America: 'I Won't Be Silent'

    Jay Busbee at Busted Racquet 24 days ago

    Add Serena Williams to the growing list of athletes speaking up against racial tensions, and specifically police-related violence. Writing on her Facebook page, Williams told the story of the fear she felt at having her nephew drive with a police officer nearby.

    “Why did I have to think about this in 2016? Have we not gone through enough, opened so many doors, impacted billions of lives?” Williams wrote. “We must stride on – for it’s not how far we have come but how much further still we have to go.”

    Athletes have been taking stands in support of racial equality for decades, but the most recent flurry of public statements arose in the wake of San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s decision not to stand for the national anthem. Williams took pains to note that she was not condemning an entire group of people or occupation, but noted that those who are “ignorant, afraid, uneducated, and insensitive” are the root of the problem.

    Here’s Williams’ statement in full:

    I Won’t Be Silent


  • Serena Williams finds inspiration to be No. 1 in the most surprising place

    Joe Lago at Busted Racquet 1 mth ago

    An abrupt exit at the Rio Olympics and a disappointing U.S. Open has not deterred Serena Williams one bit. If anything, she’s just as eager to keep her place atop women’s tennis.

    The world No. 2 talked about her undying passion to be the best in an interview with Yahoo France’s Alexandre Delperier on Monday. The motivation that “comes from inside” is still ever present, leaving her “even hungrier than before.”

    Williams won Wimbledon this summer to bring her Grand Slam singles championship haul to 22, one short of Steffi Graf’s all-time record of 23. But the 34-year-old American made it completely clear that the 22 titles are just “a starting point” – another indication that winning large, shiny trophies is far from getting old.

    Williams sat down with Yahoo France in Nice for the opening of the Mouratoglou Tennis Academy, which was created by her coach Patrick Mouratoglou. When Delperier asked if she likes “playing with kids all around you” at the academy, Williams looked around the picturesque setting and replied yes.

    But her reason was the real surprise.

  • Novak Djokovic advances to US Open final

    Jackie Bamberger at Busted Racquet 1 mth ago

    While Serena Williams was shocked in the semifinals of the US Open Thursday, there would be no such upset for the top-ranked player on the men’s side.

    Novak Djokovic moved on to his third Grand Slam final of the year with an entertaining  6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 6-2  win against Gael Monfils.

    Friday’s match inititally looked like an easy victory for the world No. 1, who handily took the first two sets without much of a challenge from Monfils. But things took a turn when Monfils found his groove and won five straight games to force a fourth set.

    At times, both players sought treatment to deal with the effects of the oppressive heat and humidity. Monfils hunched over his racquet between nearly every point and called for a soda during one changeover.

    After the two traded breaks in the fourth, Djokovic broke Monfils again to recover the edge he needed to advance to his third Slam final of the year.

    There, he will face No. 3 Stan Wawrinka on Sunday in a rematch of the 2015 French Open final.

  • Meet new world No. 1 Angelique Kerber

    Jackie Bamberger at Busted Racquet 1 mth ago

    For the first time in 186 weeks, a new name will be featured atop the WTA world rankings.

    Because of Serena Williams’ stunning loss Thursday in the semifinals of the US Open, Angelique Kerber is now set to take over her No. 1 slot.

    Before she faces off against Karolina Pliskova in Saturday’s US Open final, here is everything you need to know about the German tennis star.

    “Steffi is a great champion, a great person and I think she’s proud of me to be the next No. 1 after her,” Kerber said after her semifinal win Thursday.

  • Serena Williams passes tough US Open quarterfinal test

    Jackie Bamberger at Busted Racquet 1 mth ago

    It wasn’t as easy as she’d hoped, but Serena Williams is onto the semifinals of the US Open.

    The 22-time Grand Slam winner met a formidable challenger Wednesday night in Simona Halep, who became the first player to take a set off of Williams in New York.

    Williams started strong, winning the first set 6-2 on the back of her reliable serve and solid play at the net.

    But Halep stayed confident and aggressive, breaking Williams in the third game of the second set and prevailing in a 22-point game to even up the score.

    In the decider, it would be Williams who would seize momentum early, grabbing a 3-1 lead. That slight edge was all she needed to advance to the semifinals  6-2, 4-6, 6-3 .

    There, she’ll hope to avoid another major upset against 10th-seeded Karolina Pliskova. Williams already stands alone for most major match wins in the Open era and can make more history by passing Steffi Graf’s Slam title mark. Williams tied Graf with her performance at Wimbledon earlier this summer. 

  • Kei Nishikori outlasts Andy Murray to advance to US Open semis

    Jackie Bamberger at Busted Racquet 1 mth ago

    Andy Murray’s stellar summer came to an untimely end Wednesday, as Kei Nishikori outlasted the world No. 2 in a five-set US Open quarterfinal showdown at Arthur Ashe Stadium.

    Murray looked every bit the man to beat coming into New York, and comfortably took the first set 6-1, but a series of distractions, including an inexplicable gong noise, rain and a persistent butterfly, took him off his game and Nishikori seized the opportunity with a 1-6, 6-4, 4-6, 6-1, 7-5 win.

    Nishikori picked up his level following a rain delay midway through the second set, dazzling the New York crowd with an array of stunning drop shots and perfectly placed winners to even things up.

    The third set was an up and down affair with five breaks of serve and Murray would come out on top 6-4.

    Things came undone for the Scot at the start of the fourth set, when an equipment malfunction caused a loud gong sound in the middle of play. Murray utterly lost his cool, complaining to the umpire, while Nishikori kept calm, winning five straight games to send things to a decider.

    Nishikori will advance to the semifinals, hoping to improve upon his 2014 runner-up finish.

  • Caroline Wozniacki breezes into US Open semis

    Jackie Bamberger at Busted Racquet 1 mth ago

    Caroline Wozniacki continued her resurgence Tuesday night, as the former world No. 1 breezed through to the US Open semifinals.

    Wozniacki’s opponent, Anastasija Sevastova, rolled her ankle in the second game and was never able to mount much of an attack, resulting in a 6-0, 6-2 scoreline.

    Heading into Queens, 2016 had been another a dismal year for Wozniacki. She got bounced in the opening rounds of the Australian Open and Wimbledon, and was sidelined for months due to injury.

    But all that has turned around in New York, where Wozniacki has put together a string of impressive wins. Next up, she’ll face a tall task in Angelique Kerber. Kerber won the Australian Open and finished runner-up to Serena Williams at Wimbledon.