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 The alphabet book of the 2019 tennis season (from A to M)
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The alphabet book of the 2019 tennis season (from A to M)

A like Australia... 

And the first big thrill of the tennis season in Melbourne, with its Grand Slam tournament. 2019 has seen Osaka win a second major title, 4 months after winning her first at the US Open, and Djokovic easily defeating Nadal in the final to clinch his 7th Australian Open. A record. The Australian fortnight has also seen Tsitsipas reveal himself on the big stage, Kvitova’s rebirth, and Murray’s tears.

 

B like Barty...

Who was named best female player of the year. She has been the world number 1 since June and has earned 11,3 million dollars in prize money over the course of the year. Neither Federer, Djoko, or Nadal did better. What else? 4 titles, including Roland-Garros and the WTA Finals. No Barty, no party.
 

 

C like Come-back...

Kim Clijsters’, of course, to the surprise of many. The 36 year-old Belgian had already made a first come-back in 2009, after two years of absence, but we thought that she had definitely left the circuit in 2012. A huge challenge for the ex-world number 1, who has won three Grand Slam titles. Another come-back was Tatiana Golovin’s, the ex-world number 12.
 

 

 

D like Djokovic...

first name Novak. In the year when the Joker came out in movie theaters, the Djoker of tennis has had another great season with a 7th Australian Open, a 5th Wimbledon, and two more Masters 1000, joining John McEnroe as the fifth tennis players with the most trophies won in the history of men’s tennis, with 77 titles (behind Connors, Federer, Lendl and Nadal).
 

 

E like Encouragements...

For Canada, the up-and-coming next big nation of world tennis. In women’s tennis, Bianca Andreescu made a name for herself after winning BNP Paribas Open - Indian Wells, the Rogers Cup, and the US Open. In men’s tennis, Raonic has been joined by Shapovalov and Augier-Aliassime at the top of world tennis, as they were, alongside Pospisil, the finalists of the Davis Cup. Canada is no longer just the country of ice hockey! 

 

 

F like Feliciano Lopez...

One of the veterans of the circuit, who has had a very special year 2019: with a 7th title won at the Queen’s, the record of defeats suffered on the ATP circuit (445 since he has turned pro in… 1997, better than Fabrice Santoro’s previous record) and a triumph at the Davis Cup, at home, alongside Nadal and the Spanish team!

 

 

G like G.E.M.S.life...

The most gossip tennis-related Instagram account. An acronym for Gaël, Elina, Monfils and Svitolina, it relates the adventures of the very cute Franco-Ukrainian couple which has been together since 2017. Their motto is written in their bio: « We’re not perfect. We make mistakes. And we’ll make more mistakes. And that’s OK. »
 

 

H like Hip replacement...

The one which enabled Andy Murray to get back on the courts and even win a new title in Antwerp at the end of the season. The Scot had previously ended the Australian Open in tears, as he was crushed by frustration and pain. To see him with a racquet in hand a few months later is a little miracle. God bless his surgeon and his prothesis! 

 

 

I like Indian Wells - BNP Paribas Open...

The Californian tournament has been less marked by Thiem’s win over Federer this season than by the revelation Bianca Andreescu, the 18-year old who was given a wild-card, and who defeated Muguruza, Svitolina and Kerber in the final. A true feat which reminded us of Serena Williams’ twenty years ago…
 

 

J like Jannik Sinner...

The Italian sensation of the end of the season. For his first real season on the professional circuit, the 18 year-old kid has won his first Challenger in Bergamo, and then qualified for his first ATP tournament in Budapest, before qualifying for his first Grand Slam tournament at the US Open, and defeating his first Top 50 player in Antwerp (Monfils) before ending the year in the Top 100 and winning the NextGen Finals after being invited by the organizers, despite his rivals being two years older than him. A phenomenon. 
 

 

K like Kyrgios...

First name Nick, the schizophrenic of the courts, capable of producing the better (a title won in Acapulco after defeating three top 10 players, including Nadal), but mainly the worst: insults in Miami, a clash with Casper Ruud, with insults, in Rome, mocking of Roland-Garros, and getting a 16-weeks suspension for displaying a wrong behavior in Cincinnati. It’s time to grow up…

 

 

L like Lassitude...

The heartfelt cry of another madman of the circuit, Benoît Paire. Visibly exhausted after a correct but tiring season (two titles won in Lyon and Marrakech, two fourth-round matches in Grand Slam tournaments at Wimbledon and Roland-Garros), the Frenchman gave up in the middle of a match played in Shanghai, with a rant that has already acquired cult status: « I want to go home, set me freeeee, I can’t take it any longeeeerrr! » We’ve rarely seen a defeated player so happy to go home.
 

 

M like Mexico...

And the record set by Roger Federer and Alexander Zverev for the biggest crowd ever at a tennis match: 42 517 spectators, 7000 more than the previous record which had been set in 2010 in Brussels, during an exhibition match between Clijsters and S.Williams. The tennis show is alive and well.
 

 
By Régis Delanoë