Tennis season 2014 has come to its logical ending. We congratulate Roger Federer and the whole Swiss team (especially Stan Wawrinka) on their first ever Davis Cup title and, of course, Novak Djokovic who finished the year as the world's top-ranked male tennis player. Now let’s recollect the best memories and the most remarkable events of the tennis year 2014.
Start of the season
The season commenced with a number of curios events. Firstly, Rafael Nadal won his 61st ATP title in Doha, which was very important for the Spaniard who failed the end of the previous season. It was the first win of Nadal since the US Open 2013. Secondly, Lleyton Hewitt won his first title since 2010 with a victory of top-seeded Roger Federer in the Brisbane International Final. Thirdly, Stan Wawrinka won the Chennai Open. Then it came time of the Australian Open, where everyone expected Djokovic – Nadal final, but the stubborn Stan Wawrinka outplayed Novak (for the first time since 2007) to win his first Grand Slam title over an injury-hit Rafael Nadal. Stan showed really amazing tennis in Australia!
In February Marin Cilic returned on court after the nine-month suspension and displayed very solid tennis. But then no one gave it a thought. Meanwhile Nishikori wrapped up a straight sets win over Feliciano Lopez to win the Memphis International and Federer stunned Novak Djokovic in the semifinals of the Dubai Championship to claim victory over Tomas Berydch in the final match.
Generally speaking, in the first part of the circuit all top-players showed something inexplicable. Rafael Nadal was searching for his play. Djokovic and Federer were far from their best. Murray was seen nowhere at all. But despite all this, Djokovic won the Miami and Indian Wells masters. The Serb was a bit less “worse” than the rest of the contenders.
The midpart of the 2014 tennis season
It came as a bit surprise, but Stan Wawrinka won the clay Masters 1000 in Monte-Carlo thus securing himself a spot in the year-end finals. It was a confident win of the Swiss No.2 who upset all the opponents on his route to the final. In April Rafael Nadal’s 11-year winning streak in Barcelona was over as he lost it in the quarterfinals to his compatriot Nicolas Almagro who showed the best match in his career. By the way, it was the only great achievement of Almagro in 2014. Then he pulled out of the top 50. And the Barcelona title was claimed by Kei Nishikori. The Japanese prodigy showed brilliant tennis in Madrid. And but for his injury he could have easily upset Nadal in the final. The Rome final became a rehearsal of Roland Garros final: the Serb lifted the trophy for the third time, but we knew that Nadal would improve his performance in France.
Roland Garros final saw Nadal take on Djokovic. Wawrinka was the only one to upset their plans but he pulled out in the first round. All other opponents were easily swept away. Actually, the Grand Slam on clay is the most predictable event of the year. 10 year in a row we see the same faces: Federer, Nadal, Djokovic. This year the Spaniard extended his incredible run to take the ninth Roland Garros title. This win was the last remarkable performance of Nadal in 2014.
The 2014 Wimbledon Championship was very prosaic. Nick Kyrgios with his shock victory over Rafael Nadal became the only sensation at the tournament. Nishikori and Raonic were in good form and Cilic lacked some luck again: he displayed wonderful tennis at Roland Garros and at Wimbledon, but both times Djokovic was his executioner in the opening rounds. Roger Federer played scintillating tennis in the final five-set thriller being down to 2-5 in the fourth set but lost it to a well-deserved Nole. The Swiss saved a number of match points willing for a fairytale, but Djokovic was writing his own history.
In July Pablo Cuevas aged 28 claimed his second ATP World Tour title and the uprising star of the Belgian tennis David Goffin won four consecutive tournaments. The first three of them were challengers, but the fourth was his Austrian Open Kitzbuhel title. And to be honest, we would bet on David Goffin as a future breakthrough of the year 2015. Shall he be fit and fine, he and Nishikori may pose real danger to the tennis elite players.
Now it’s time we made a short digression. While all these tennis events were going their own way, something not closely related to it, but influencing its results happened. Novak Djokovic married his childhood sweetheart Jelena Ristic to become a father in October and Roger Federer became a father of the second set of twins! What we are driving at is that Djokovic took a break after the Wimbledon Championship failing Toronto and Cincinnati Masters1000 (the bachelor party definitely came off well). At the US Open he also wasn’t in his best. And as it happens the holy place is never empty. Jo-Wilfred Tsonga was the first to catch the opportunity and toppled Roger Federer for Toronto title. Later on, Federer himself won his career second Canadian Masters.
The US Open was predictably unpredictable. Everyone rightly expected that Federer would hardly claim the title in the best-of-five-sets format. Djokovic couldn’t awake after his recent marriage and lost to Nishikori in the semifinals. Murray coached by Amelie Mauresmo was looking for his tennis. Nadal withdrew from the tournament. Marin Cilic from Croatia and Kei Nishikori took the situation to their advantage and showed extraordinary tennis. Well, judging by the number of vacant seats, the audience wasn’t very pleasant with the final battle. But it’s tennis, guys. We can’t but mention the French Gilles Simone who was the only to offer struggle to Marin Cilic.
The end of the 2014 tennis season
Federer, Djokovic, Nishikori and Murray were the best performers on indoors hard courts. Well, as a matter of fact, the latter failed his home tournament when he had to be on his top, but generally Murray has pleasantly surprised his fans. Federer took his first Shanghai title beating Gilles Simone in tough struggle. Nishikori won Tokyo title and Malaysian Open in Kuala-Lumpur. The abovementioned Goffin also displayed very decent tennis taking his second career ATP title in Metze. And of course we won’t forget about the 7-weeks long marathon of Andy Murray, David Ferrer and Milos Raonic. Till the Paris Masters it wasn’t clear who would play in London.
The London Finals are still green in our minds. As far as we remember, it was the worst season-ending event. Most of the finalists approached it in a very poor form. And the final battle was the first walkover in a final in the tournament’s 45-year history. And even if Federer hadn’t withdrawn, he would have lost it to death. Djokovic picked up his best form as his first world ranking was threatened. Vivat, Nole!
As for the upcoming season 2015, we will share our thoughts with you later.
As for our service, the first part of the season was very successful for us and we managed to increase the list of our subscribers 2,5 times! Then we lacked some luck and made a profit of 40% only, which isn’t bad either. We think it’s much more interesting than borrowing your money to the bank. But we can do even better! We have launched the English version of our website http://dotennis.net/ to conquer the Western betting world! So stay with us and together we’ll achieve big heights!
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Antalya Open final preview and prediction: Adrian Mannarino v Yuichi Sugita
Eastbourne final preview and prediction: Novak Djokovic v Gael Monfils
Gerry Weber Open R2 preview and prediction: Bernard Tomic v Richard Gasquet
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