March 24, 2023
Five Point Friday
Here’s your roundup of the five most interesting things I’m enjoying or thinking about this week in tennis.
1.) Carlos Back to No. 1
With a convincing 6-3 6-2 defeat of Danill Medvedev at the Indian Wells Masters, Carlos Alcaraz regains his position as world No. 1, edging out Djokovic, who briefly took over at the end of February. You can check out the final highlights here, or if you’re looking for a throwback, you can watch Carlos competing at ten years old in this video. Another piece that I enjoyed is his Players’ Voice essay published this week on Eurosport.
2.) Rybakina Gets Revenge
Last year’s Wimbledon champ, Elena Rybakina, is back with another big victory at the Indian Wells Masters, overcoming Aryna Sabalenka in a hard-fought 7-6 (11) 6-4 victory. In doing so, she broke a 0-4 record against Ayrna, including her Australian Open finals loss against her earlier this year. Equally as impressive, she handily beat a seemingly unstoppable Iga Swiatek 6-2 6-2 in the semifinals to set the stage for the finals.
3.) Swiatek Out of Miami
On Monday, Iga hinted at an injury she dealt with while playing in Indian Wells, then two days later, we received news of her withdrawal from the Miami Open, where she’s the defending champion. At this stage, it’s unclear when she’ll return, but she’s committed to adequately tending to the issue properly rather than rushing back.
????Tough one tonight. I gave it all but Elena was a better player. Unfortunately I’m feeling discomfort and pain in my ribs and it was challenging for me to compete at my highest level. I will consult with my team and I will definitely use these next days to recover. See you soon! pic.twitter.com/e5ZPwJp1d7
— Iga Świątek (@iga_swiatek) March 18, 2023
4.) Mofils Forced to Retire
During his first-round Miami Open match against countryman Ugo Humbert, Gael Monfils suffered a wrist injury that left him wincing from the pain and forced him to retire. Having lost in the first round at Indian Wells, this was only his second match back on tour after a seven-month hiatus related to a foot injury. At 36, Gael knows he only has a few years left at best, but his love for the game drives him to continue competing.
Oh Gael ????
In visible pain in his wrist, @Gael_Monfils retires at 3-3 in the first set vs countryman Humbert#MiamiOpen pic.twitter.com/m0ErQXGcXn
— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) March 22, 2023
5.) WTA on Predatory Coaches
To help protect female tennis players from emotional and physical abuse that often flies under the radar, the WTA has hired lawyer Lindsay Brandon as their first Director of Safeguarding. Although predatory coaches are an emphasis, Brandon emphasizes her efforts will extend further to include training staff and athlete-to-athlete issues. She’ll also be working to provide more education and a safeguarding code of conduct that outlines behavioral standards and procedures to follow if a problem arises, which will apply to anyone credentialed in the WTA environment.
If you have a moment, I’d love to hear your feedback. Which topic is your favorite? What would you like to see more or less of each week?
Share your thoughts in the comments below, and have a great weekend.
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5 Point Friday
Read our weekly recap of the 5 most interesting things we dig up in tennis.
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