After over a month of absolute calm, the world of tennis heated up immediately, in the very first week of the 2019 season. The action on the men’s side began with ATP 250 tournaments in Brisbane, Doha and Pune, all with very different time-zones, which meant that tennis was on display for almost 20 hours a day for most of the week.
Along with the official ATP tournaments, the ever so entertaining Hopman Cup was also on display this week and provided the fans with a few unique match-ups.
So, without any more delay, let’s take a look at who all started the 2019 season in the best possible manner:
Tata Open Maharashtra: Kevin Anderson goes one step further this year and grabs the title in Pune
After losing to Novak Djokovic in the final of the Abu Dhabi exhibition, Anderson didn’t stumble at the last hurdle this week in Pune as he defeated the 39-year-old Ivo Karlovic, who became the oldest finalist in the men’s game since Ken Rosewall (43) in 1977, in an absolute thriller, winning 7-6(4), 6-7(2), 7-6(5) from being down 2-5 in the final set tiebreak.
‘Dr. Ivo’, as many call him, also became the oldest man to win an ATP Challenger title in October last year, when he defeated Jordan Thompson in Calgary. So, he is not new to rewriting history.
On the way to his sixth singles title on the ATP Tour, Anderson also took some sweet revenge in the semi-finals against Gilles Simon, who had defeated the South African in last year’s final.
In the doubles action, the Indian duo of Rohan Bopanna and Divij Sharan, who played for the first time together on the ATP Tour this week, went past the British pair of Luke Bambridge and Jonny O’Mara, 6-3, 6-4 in Saturday’s final to start the partnership in the best possible manner.
On the way to their first title together, the home favorites and top seeds pulled off incredible wins in their two rounds prior to the final as they saved multiple match points in both those matches, saving six against the Indo-Mexico pair of Leander Paes and Miguel Angel Reyes-Varela in the quarterfinals, and two against the pair of Simon Bolleli and Ivan Dodig in the semis.