First of all, very sorry for the lack of updates on the blog last few weeks. We’ll definately try to update it more again for the rest of the year. It has been an amazing few weeks on the grass so far, and we are only halfway the season. Nico was the winner in ‘s-Hertogenbosch in singles and runner up in doubles with Pierre-Hugues. The week after that, the two went one step further to catch their first ATP title together by winning the doubles tournament of Queens.
This week was the week of qualifications for the greenest of all Grand Slams, Wimbledon.Nico has been given a wildcard, but his doublespartner had to qualify for the maindraw, which he did succesfully. The draw for the singles and both doubles tournament are made yesterday.
Nico plays his first round against Filip Krajinovic from Serbia. Krajinovic is currently number 121 of the world. In the round after, Nico can play against the winner of Jeremy Chardy and Tomas Berdych. But before this can happen, there’s the first round first, and this should be played on tuesday. The tophalf starts on monday and the bottomhalf, including Nico, on tuesday.
The doublesdraw was made too, and it should not be too difficult for Nico and Pierre-Hugues in their first round match. They play the spanish couple of Almagro and Menendez-Maceiras.
More pictures of the previous grass events will be added too, and we’ll be in Wimbledon live, so stay tuned for grass tennis plctures on this place soon.
The last round of qualifying yesterday didn’t go the way we wanted, Nicolas lost a big battle against Luca Vanni in 3 sets: 4-6 6-3 5-7. Luckily he’ll get some more clay rythm, because he’s still in doubles with Edouard Roger-Vasselin.
It’s a real pity to have been so close, (Vanni broke Nico in the third set in his last servicegame) but let’s take the positives from this weekend. He got to play some matches on clay, and reaching that second qualifying round gives Nico 16 points to hopefully rise a few places on the rankings next week. In case you haven’t followed the match yesterday, here are the stats.
Madrid is not over yet, because there’s doubles to be played with Edouard Roger-Vasselin. Both men are without their regular partners, which makes them the eight seed team in Madrid. For the first round, the french have a bye. In the second round they will play the winners of Kontinen/Draganja vs Bopanna/Dregea.
We have some pictures from yesterdays match for you, made by Rena Ibragimova. She kindly gave permission to share them on here, hope you enjoy!
Hurrah, the season on clay continues! Nico has made it into the madrid qualifying tournament, and he was already seen practicing today!
The for the qualy-draw was made this evening. The first opponent tomorrow will be Joao Souza from Brasil, who’s currently world number 78. He and Nico never met before. Nico has to be careful, and play very well, because Souza is good on clay.
Tomorrows match will be on court 3, one of the bigger courts in Madrid. There’s no streaming for the matches unfortunately, so we’ll have to rely on livescores tomorrow morning.
Allez Nico, time to get some clay rythm for the second Grand Slam of the year!
Remember sunday april 12th? It’s more than a week ago, but for us a very happy day. Nico won his first title of the year, winning the Saint-Brieuc challenger in singles. Let’s have a look back at a succesful week in the west of France.
Saint-Brieuc was a challenger that Nicolas only entered in singles, to build on his amount of points, and most likely on his confidence too. He won the challenger, but had to win some good matches to lift the trophy on sunday. Here’s, in short, the results of the week:
First round: 6-4 7-6 over Richard Becker
Second round: 6-3 6-0 over Yann Marti
Quarterfinal: 7-6 5-7 7-6 over Remi Boutillier (saving two matchpoints in the third set, before breaking back for 5-5.)
Semifinal: 7-5 6-4 over Lucas Pouille
Final: 3-6 7-6 6-4 over Yuichi Sugita (broke Sugita for 5-5 in the second set, when he served for the match.)
Especially in the quarterfinal and the final, Nico has shown some very strong mental strength. He stayed cool, believed in his chances and took his chances when he got them. Those are the matches you need to build confidence for the months to come.
Here are some photos, taken by the tournament, from Nicolas in Saint-Brieuc. So good to see him with a trophy in his hands, don’t you think? There will come another post, with some action photos from Nico that week, to be posted later this week, so stay tuned for that one! ;)
If you’d like to watch the archived matches of the whole week, there’s good news for you. Here is the link to watch them, including the final. http://livestream.com/ATP/stbrieuc2015centrecourt
It’s monday again and that means a new stop on the tour. This weeks stop is in France, for the challenger of Saint-Brieuc. The challenger is played on indoor hard court, and Nico will participate here only in the singles tournament.
The first opponent will be a qualifier. These are not known yet because the last round of qualifying will be completed today. If you’d like to watch the matches, there’s a link for livestreaming of the center court in Salle Stederinn in Saint-Brieuc. They show it on the website (http://www.opensaintbrieuc.com/ ) But if you go here, you can watch the livestream too: http://new.livestream.com/ATP/stbrieuc2015centrecourt
Now that Miami is over, the new ATP rankings for this week are out too. In singles nothing has changed, we find Nico still on spot 124 of the world. But the doublesteam rankings has changed a bit, the team of Nico and Pierre-Hughes are on spot 6 this week, two places lower than before. Hopefully PH is soon fit to play again, so the two can build on their doublesrankings again.
The Saint-Brieuc tournament caught NIco on pictures yesterday, when training on the court of Saint-Brieuc. These two are made by them, so credits to them.
Time flies these days, another tournament is left behind without Nico. Yesterday he played his first round match against Ruben Bemelmans from Belgium; a match that the Belgian won in straight sets: 7-6 6-3.
Nico had several chances during the match, that he unfortunately could not convert. He lead the tiebreak with 6-3, but Bemelmans somehow made 5 points in a row to take it with 8-6. In the second set, the Belgian took a quick lead with a break for 2-0, but this one was made undone by Nico in the third game. Bemelmans created another break, which was enough to serve for the match at 5-3. The match was for Ruben in one hour and 23 minutes: 7-6 6-3.
The facebooksite from the Guadeloupe challenger has posted some photos of Nico in this match, so we can post them here too. If you didn’t have the chance to see the match yesterday, you can watch a replay here:
Nico and Edouard were supposed to play doubles later on the day, but they gave a walkover for that match. The tournament wrote that he felt some pain, and preferred not to play the doubles.
This means, the challenger of Saint-Brieuc is the next tournament, it takes place next week.
We’ve got some pictures for you from last week, when Nico was in Miami. The tournament was not very succesfull for Nico unfortunately, he lost in the qualies first round on monday. Norbert gombos was too strong, winning in straight sets with 7-6 6-3.
Then on friday he won in doubles with Edouard Roger-Vasselin the first match against Bautista-Agut and Troicki. The first set was won by the french with 6-3. The opponents had to retire in the second game of the second set, because Roberto Bautista got a ball in his eye, when he tried to return a serve from Nico.
(pictures by Judith Remekie)
Saturday was the second round, which they lost, to the American duo Raveej Ram/Ryan Harrison: 7-5 7-6. Little ‘funny’ fact: The french won two points more than their opponents, 74 points for them, and 72 for the Americans.
So Miami didn’t last long unfortunately, but this gave Nico and Edouard the chance to take the plane to Guadeloupe, and play the challenger there. Nico plays tomorrow his first match, 15.00h local time (6 hours later in France) ALLEZ!!!
Thanks a lot to Aidana for the next few practice pictures. She took them in Miami, and gave us permission to use them on this blog. Muchas gracias!
Before going back to Europe for the clay season, there’s one more tournament on the other side of the Atlantic ocean to play for Nico. He’s in Le Gosier, Guadeloupe this week.
Yesterday they made the singlesdraw. The first round match will be against Ruben Bemelmans, who is currently world number 134, ten places lower than Nico. The two met 3 times before in the past, Nico won the two first meetings (Courmayeur 2011 and Rennes 2013), but Ruben won last year in Rennes. All meetings were on hardcourt, like the matches in Guadeloupe will be too. Here is the link to the singlesdraw: http://www.atpworldtour.com/posting/2015/6244/mds.pdf
The doublesdraw was made today, and Nico plays here with Edouard Roger-Vasselin. They are the first seeds here, and play first match against Cerretani/Van der Duim, an American Dutch combination.
Link to the doublesdraw: http://www.atpworldtour.com/posting/2015/6244/mdd.pdf
The tournament posted some pictures yesterday on their facebook website. Nico was on a few of them too, at the draw ceremony last night.
Bonne chance, Nico! Allez!
Welcome to Miami! The next stop in Nico’s schedule is in this south-American city.
The tournament starts today, with a first round match against Norbert Gombos. Nico is currently ranked 124, and Gombos is two places higher than him, on spot 122. The two never met on ATP tour level, but in the challenger meetings it’s 3-0 for Nico. The most recent win was last year in Saint Remy, the tournament that Nico won.
Nico and Norbert are scheduled 4th match on court 5. Unfortunately there’s no stream so we can’t follow the match that way. Good news is though, we know someone in Miami who promised to take some photos of Nico today. Hopefully we’ll recieve them tonight.
The maindraw is made within an hour from now, and the doublesdraw comes out tomorrow. Hopefully Nico will play the doubles too, because he made it to the semifinals there last year with Michael Llodra. Speaking of doubles, in the rankings is Nico back to spot 20, two places lower than last week. He lost the points for the Indian Wells quarterfinals of last year, but got 50 points a few weeks ago, for the Davis cup doublesmatch that he won with Julien Benneteau.
Allez Nico, step by step, let’s go qualify for his first masters event of the year!