After Wimbledon and before the Olympic Games and the US Open, this month of July enables the stars to relax, lower-ranked players to win a few titles in minor tournaments and others to plan weddings in the ATP and WTA’s overloaded calendars. Ana Ivanovic is among that last category, the Serb having got married with the football player Bastian Schweinsteiger. She’s in front of a heroic Tsonga, as was the whole French BNP Paribas Davis Cup team, in our weekly ranking, and a Victoria Azarenka who’s taking a break in her career as a maternity leave.
1- Ana Ivanovic (NE).
They said yes ! To all the secretly in love fans of Ana Ivanovic’s utter despair, the 28 year old player is no longer available.
She got married a few days ago with the German football international player Bastian Schweinsteiger, 31.
The couple made their union official by exchanging rings with great fanfare, in the majestic scenery of Venice, in the same palace in which George Clooney got married with Amal Alamuddin. With gondolas, of course.
We wish them a lot of happiness.
2- Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (NE).
On the sporting side, the main information of these last few days was the BNP Paribas Davis Cup quarter finals, with notably a big clash between Czech Republic and France. Which started badly for the Tricolores, in mourning after the attack in Nice, on the night of the National Day…
Moved by the terrible news, Tsonga, like the other members of the French team (and especially its captain Yannick Noah), suffered a first defeat on Friday against Rosol, before pulling himself together and winning his second match in the singles, the decisive match against Vesely on Sunday.
Despite the absent players, « les Bleus » did the job and qualified for the semi-finals of the competition, with the rise of a new generation full of hope : Pouille in the singles, and the pair formed by Herbert and Mahut in the doubles.
3- Victoria Azarenka (NE).
Another celebrity baby on the way with Victoria Azarenka announcing her pregnancy ! As a result, the Belarusian is putting her professional career aside for an undefined amount of time.
Congratulation to her. Visibly, the start of her pregnancy looks tiring but she keeps on smiling.
Anyhow, she received a lot of nice messages, among which one from the WTA, who wishes her a lot of happiness and hopes to see her again soon on the courts for a winning comeback. Like Kim Clijsters ?
4- Simona Halep (NE).
The performance of the week came from Simona Halep. The Romanian won, at home in Bucarest, her 13th title on the circuit, by trashing her opponent in the final, the Lithuanian Anastasija Sevastova, 6/0 6/0 !
Ruthless, Halep was willing to win the Bucarest tournament for the second time in her career (the first was in 2013, against Vinci) in front of a crowd committed to her.
It’s done !
5- Kyle Edmund (NE).
The feat of the week is for Kyle Edmund, the British, who qualified his team in the BNP Paribas Davis Cup. The world number 67 won both of his match in the singles, against Tipsarevic and Lajovic, of the Serbian team, the British’s opponents in the quarter-finals.
Without Andy Murray, the British were seen as having no chance at all but they could count on a heaven-sent Edmund, 21, who put on the best performance of his career this week. Under the glance of a Murray withdrew, but who was there in the stands to cheer for his buddies and on court to celebrate the victory.
Next opponent for the British : Argentina.
6- Angelique Kerber (-1).
Back to the event of the week, Ivanovic’s wedding, with, among the privileged guests, a great friend on the circuit, the German Angelique Kerber.
The recent finalist of Wimbledon visibly made the most of the festivities in the City of the Doges…
7- Taylor Fritz (NE).
Summer is the wedding season and Ivanovic is not the only one to have made the most of it. The very young Taylor Fritz also took advantage of the beginning of July to formalize his commitment with his longtime girlfriend, a certain Raquel Pedraza.
Getting married at only 18, the actual world number 64 visibly has no time to lose.
8- Tsvetana Pironkova (NE).
Wedding and tennis, the end : after Pennetta a few weeks ago, Cibulkova a few days ago, and Ana Ivanovic a few hours ago, it was Tsvetana Pironkova’s turn to celebrate her wedding.
The Bulgarian player got married with a fellow countryman who is also an athlete : the ex-football player Mihail Mirchev, 41.
Pironkova didn’t wait too long before unwrapping the gifts…
9- Ivo Karlovic (NE).
Between Wimbledon and the Olympic Games, last week was the minor tournaments’ week, without the opposition of the best on the circuit (on holiday). It’s always a good occasion for the lower-ranked players, like the good old Ivo Karlovic, to fill up their personal records. The Croatian won in the final on Newport’s grass court after defeating the Luxembourger Gilles Müller in 3 very tight sets (6/7 7/6 7/6).
At 37, the giant of Zagreb has won the 7th title of his career.
10- Martin Klizan (NE).
Another winner this week : Martin Klizan, who defeated Pablo Cuevas in the final in Hamburg.
It’s the fifth title in the Slovakian’s career, and the second in the 2016 season. The first one was already an ATP 500, won in February in Rotterdam.
Klizan could come close to his best-ever ranking, world number 24, which he held in April 2015.
11- Albert Ramos-Vinolas (NE).
Last week was really filled up with ATP tournaments, with the Swedish Open of Bastad also being held, and which was won by Albert Ramos-Vinolas. The Spaniard defeated his fellow countryman Fernando Verdasco in the final.
It’s Ramos’ first title in his career, and he decided to pay hommage to his first coach.
Cute, don’t you find ?
12- Federico Delbonis (NE).
In the BNP Paribas Davis Cup, Argentina managed to qualify after defeating Italy. The big man of this victorious quarter-final is Federico Delbonis, who won his two matches against Seppi and Fognini.
There was joy in the Argentine team, with a Del Potro looking very happy after the qualification, and happy to have played a part in it after winning the doubles alongside Guido Pella.
To celebrate the qualification, the whole team went for a mandatory stop at the barber !
13- Marin Cilic (NE).
The fourth semi-finalists of this 2016 edition of the BNP Paribas Davis Cup are the Croatians, who managed an incredible feat : defeating the Americans on their soil after losing 0-2.
Cilic lead the charge by taking part in the victorious doubles match against the Bryan brothers, before winning the equalizing point against John Isner. Borna Coric then finished the job by dominating Jack Sock in the fifth decisive match. Enough to send the Croatian fans into rapture.
And after all this, Cilic also pleased an American fan.
14- Viktorija Golubic (NE).
On the WTA circuit, the Gstaad tournament was also held in Switzerland. The local Viktorija Golubic defeated Kiki Bertens to clinch the first trophy of her career.
And probably the heaviest in terms of weight…
15- Eugenie Bouchard (-7).
Before taking part in the Washington Open, Eugenie Bouchard got to visit the White House. She dressed up for the occasion.
Despite not getting a picture with Barack Obama, the Canadian got herself an autograph. Already a pretty nice souvenir.
Murray, S.Williams, Raonic, Federer, Kyrgios, Cibulkova, Djokovic, Pouille, Wozniacki, Fognini, Sharapova, Ormaechea, Berdych