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Second Place Winner, December 2011 Photo Contest
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Starts Monday January 28, 2002.....

Ferrero the top seed in Milan tourney

The Associated Press


MILAN, Italy (January 22, 2002 01:30 PM EST) -

Juan Carlos Ferrero, a late entry, will be the top-seeded player in the $400,000 Milan Indoor, the first ATP tournament of the year in Europe.

Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic will be the No. 2 seed for the tournament, which starts Monday. The field includes defending champion Roger Federer, Jan Michael Gambill, Hicham Arazi and Nicolas Escude.

Ferrero, ranked fifth on the ATP Tour, won the Italian Open last year.

:cool:
 

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Milan Indoors, Milan

Place: Milan, Italy
Date: January 28 - February 3, 2002
Draw Size: 32
Surface: Indoor Carpet
Prize Money: US $ 381,000
Stadium Court Seating: 3,500
Tournament Director: Franco Bartoni
Website: www.atpmilano.it

;)
 

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Milan Indoors Releases 2002 Field

New Balls Please stars Juan Carlos Ferrero, 21, and Roger Federer, 20, will head the field of the traditional ATP event in Milan, which will be played at the IOL stadium next week.

Ferrero, who finished 2001 at No. 5 in the ATP Champions Race, will make his 2002 debut in Milan after withdrawing from Sydney and the Australian Open due to a knee injury. Federer returns to the site of his first career ATP title, having beaten Frenchman Julien Boutter in last year's final. The Swiss is in good shape having won the Sydney title earlier this month and held a matchpoint against Tommy Haas at the Australian Open before losing a five-set thriller.

Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic, a two-time winner in Milan, and hard-serving Greg Rusedski will be representing the Old Guard as the Battle of Generations reaches the fashion capital of the world.

Other top players expected to compete in Milan include Jan-Michael Gambill, Nicolas Escude and surprising Australian Open semifinalist Jiri Novak.

The ATP event in Milan has a long history. It was first played in 1978 and its honor roll includes winners such as John McEnroe, Boris Becker (4 titles each), Ivan Lendl (3), Stefan Edberg and Bjorn Borg.

;)
 

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C'mon tennis buddies....lets get this one going now..It gets underway today !!! Dont Forget !!! :glasses:
 

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El Aynaoui escapes upset in Milan

January 28, 2002


MILAN, Italy (AP) --

Morocco's Younes El Aynaoui survived two match points in a third-set tiebreaker Monday, avoiding an upset by Denmark's Kristian Pless in the first round of the $381,000 Milan Indoors.

The fifth-seeded El Aynaoui, who captured the Doha ATP title this month, won 4-6, 6-3, 7-6 (7).

Pless twice came within a point of winning -- at 6-5 and 7-6 -- but wasted both chances. El Aynaoui won three consecutive points to take the match.

Also in the first round, France's Nicolas Escude defeated Belgium's Christophe Rochus 4-6, 6-3, 6-4. Escude, who led France to the Davis Cup title, served two aces in the final game.

Top-seeded Juan Carlos Ferrero of Spain and defending champion Roger Federer of Switzerland, who is seeded second, are to play Wednesday.

:cool:
 

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El Aynaoui, Rusedski advance at Milan Indoors

MILAN, ITALY (TICKER) --

Already in the hunt for a second ATP title in 2002, Younes El Aynaoui of Morocco and Greg Rusedski of Britain posted victories Monday at the $381,000 Milan Indoor tennis tournament.

El Aynaoui, the fifth seed, saved three match points before rallying for a 4-6, 6-3, 7-6 (9-7) triumph over Kristian Pless of Austria in the first round at IOL Stadium.

Seeded seventh, Rusedski had a much easier time against Francisco Clavet of Spain, winning 7-5, 6-3, on the carpet in the northern Italian city.

"I'm very pleased to get a win against Francisco, who's beaten me twice before," Rusedski said. "When you play indoors, you have to go for your shots more, and that's what I started doing at the end of the first set."

El Aynaoui captured the Qatar Open title during the opening week of the year. He also was forced to rally in that final, overcoming Spain's Felix Mantilla in three sets.

Pless upset another Moroccan, Hicham Arazi, in the second round of the Australian Open. But the 20-year-old showed his inexperience Monday as he failed to take advantage of his opportunities.

El Aynaoui awaits the winner of Tuesday's first-round encounter between Italian wild card Stefano Galvani and French qualifier Nicolas Thomann.

Rusedski took the Heineken Open crown on January 12 at Auckland, New Zealand, where the British Davis Cup player battled past France's Jerome Golmard to win his 11th ATP title.

Czech Bohdan Ulihrach will be Rusedski's next opponent after outlasting Finland's Jarkko Nieminen, 6-2, 3-6, 6-3.

"(Ulihrach's) been playing well and it's another tough match," Rusedski said. "He has a similar style to Francisco, but he just hits the ball a little bit flatter."

Arazi, the eighth seed, made his way into the second round by holding off Russian Mikhail Youzhny, 7-6 (7-1), 2-6, 6-3.

Up next for the lefthander is a round-of-16 encounter with France's Nicolas Escude, who posted a 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 comeback win over Belgium's Olivier Rochus.

"This is a match I would have lost last year, but this time I was able to stay concentrated and kept fighting," said Escude, who lost to Ulihrach in the first round at last year's Milan Indoor event.

In other action, Russia's Nikolay Davydenko also dropped the opening set before getting past Brazilian Fernando Meligeni, 4-6, 6-2, 6-3.

The winner collects $48,850.

No a BAD payck for an Unknown Tournament !!! ;)
 

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Gambill ousted in Milan

Associated Press Writer
January 29, 2002
MILAN, Italy (AP) --

Jan-Michael Gambill became the first seeded player to lose at the $381,000 Milan Indoors, beaten 7-5, 3-6, 6-3 by Sjeng Schalken of the Netherlands on Tuesday.

The fourth-seeded Gambill is the only U.S. player competing in singles.

Second-seeded Roger Federer of Switzerland began his title defense with a 7-6 (2), 6-3 victory over Stefan Koubek of Austria. Federer, who won his first ATP title in Milan last year, will play Nikolay Davydenko of Russia in the second round.

Gambill appeared tense, smashing his racket on the court after missing key points. He recovered in the second set after Schalken wasted a break advantage at 3-2.

The Dutchman made a decisive break in the second game of the third set and squandered six match points in the eighth game before serving to victory.

Federer relied on his serve and powerful baseline play to beat Koubek, an Australian Open quarterfinalist.

Koubek rallied from a break down in the first set to make it 6-6. But Federer eased through the tiebreaker, helped by his opponent's unforced errors. Federer broke serve in the second game of the second set.

Also in the first round, Andre Sa of Brazil beat qualifier Cristiano Caratti of Italy 3-6, 6-3, 6-4, and wild card Stefano Galvani of Italy downed qualifier Nicolas Thomann of France 3-6, 6-4, 6-2.

On Wednesday, top-seeded Juan Carlos Ferrero of Spain faces Julien Boutter of France, last year's losing finalist in Milan.

:cool:
 

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Ferrero survives, Ivanisevic out at Milan Indoors tennis

MILAN, ITALY (TICKER) --

Juan Carlos Ferrero of Spain looked out of form on Wednesday, but still managed to pull out his first match of 2002 at the $381,000 Milan Indoors tennis tournament.

Top seed Ferrero fought back from a break down and a three-point deficit in the second set to outlast Julien Boutter of France in their first-round match, 3-6, 7-6 (7-5), 6-4.

Meanwhile, Michal Tabara of the Czech Republic was leading reigning Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic -- the third seed -- 5-7, 7-6 (9-7), 3-0, when the hard-serving Croatian retired due to a sore throat and fatigue.

Ferrero, 22, is playing this event for the first time after winning four ATP titles in 2001.

"This is my first match of the year, and I knew that it was going to be very difficult," Ferrero said. "He reached the final here last year and he likes these courts. It was hard to come back after being a break down in the second set."

Boutter, who already has beaten Thomas Johansson and Gustavo Kuerten this year, lost to Ferrero for the fourth time in as many career meetings.

"I had the match in my hands twice, and you can't let it go against a player like him," Boutter said. "When I'm ahead, I try to do too much. I still played well today, though."

Ferrero will meet Davide Sanguinetti of Italy in the second round.

Tabara had competed in three previous tournaments this year and managed to get out of the first round only once prior to Wednesday.

Ivanisevic, the champion here in 1996 and 1997, retired despite holding three match points in the second set.

"I couldn't move at all," Ivanisevic said. "I had three match points, I served for the match, but I made an easy mistake. I did not move my legs once."

Ivanisevic slipped to 4-4 in his four events this year. Since winning his first Grand Slam title at the All England Club last year, the lefthander has reached the quarterfinals just twice in 13 events.

There was another first-round upset and another injury retirement on Wednesday. Sargis Sargsian of Armenia surprised Australian Open semifinalist and sixth seed Jiri Novak of the Czech Republic, 6-3, 2-6, 6-4.

Also, Max Mirnyi of Belarus was leading Federico Luzzi, 6-0, 4-1, when the Italian retired due to a shoulder injury.

Tabara faces Mirnyi in the round of 16, while Sargsian plays Michel Kratochvil of Switzerland.

In second-round matches Wednesday, No. 7 Greg Rusedski of Britain advanced to the quarterfinals with a 7-6 (7-5), 6-4 victory over Bohdan Ulihrach of the Czech Republic.

Frenchman Nicolas Escude also moved into the last eighth, routing Morrocan Hicham Arazi, the eighth seed, 6-1, 6-3.

The winner collects $48,850.

:)
 

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Federer moves into the Milan Indoors quarterfinals

Associated Press Writer
January 31, 2002


MILAN, Italy (AP) -- Italy's Davide Sanguinetti stunned top-seeded Juan Carlos Ferrero in straight sets Thursday in the $381,000 Milan Indoors ATP tournament.

Sanguinetti took less than one hour to upset the Spaniard 6-2, 6-4 in a second-round match at the IOL stadium.

Ferrero, ranked third in the world, was polaying just his second match of the year after a right knee injury forced him out of the Sydney tournament and Australian Open earlier this month.

Sanguinetti had break points in almost every game Ferrero served and took advantage oif those opportunities and several unforced errors by Ferrero.

Sanguinetti, who refused to play some recent Davis Cup matches following a feud with the Italian Tennis Federation, scored his second career victory in 18 matches against top 10 players.

Some Italian supported Ferrero as the Spaniard looked disheartened and at the mercy of Sanguinetti, 87th in the ATP ranking. Ferrero was in trouble from the start after coming within two points of losing in a first-round match against Frenchman Julien Boutter, a finalist last year.

``I played one of my best matches in years,'' Sanguinetti said. ``Everything came easy to me and I could have played with my eyes shut.''

He also said he was ready to end his boycott and rejoin the Italian team in the upcoming Davis Cup match against Denmark at Ancona.

``Now it's up to the team captain to take a decision,'' he said.

Ferrero said, ``Sanguinetti played definitely better. I'm not yet in top form, and the fast court helped him.''

Earlier, second-seeded Roger Federer needed three sets and more than two hours to overcome promising Russian Nikolay Davydenko 6-3, 6-7 (4), 7-5 and continue his quest for a second consecutive title in Milan.

``I did not expect such a tough match,'' said Federer, who reached the fourth round of the Australian Open this year. ``I served well, I returned well. Then play changed during the match.''

``My confidence is higher (than last year). My play improved, my serve is stronger. I'm here to defend the title,'' he said.

In other second-round action, fifth-seeded Younes El Aynaoui of Morocco breezed past Italy's Stefano Galvani, a wild card entry, 6-4, 6-3.

The Moroccan player will play Sanguinetti in Friday's quarterfinals.

Unseeded Dutchman Sjeng Schalke made short work of Brazilian Andre Sa, 6-3, 6-0, to set up a quarterfinal showdown with the big-serving British player Greg Rusedski, the No. 7 seed.

In other matches Thursday, Belarus qualifier Max Mirnyi downed Czech Michal Tabara 6-1, 6-2; Armenian Sargis Sargsian defeated Michel Kratochvil of Switzerland 6-4, 6-4.

:)
 

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Federer, Rusedski battle to reach semis at Milan Indoor tennis

February 1, 2002

MILAN, ITALY (TICKER) -- Roger Federer and Greg Rusedski each had to endure a scare Friday to advance to the semifinals of the $381,000 Milan Indoor tennis tournament.

Federer, the second seed, rallied past Sargis Sargsian of Armenia, 4-6, 6-3, 6-2, while No. 7 Rusedski posted a 4-6, 7-6 (7-5), 6-2 comeback win over Sjeng Schalken of the Netherlands.

Federer and Rusedski will clash Saturday in the semifinals on the carpet of the IOL Stadium. Local favorite Davide Sanguinetti also knocked off another seed to set up a final-four meeting with Frenchman Nicolas Escude.

Tied for fifth in the ATP Champions Race, the 20-year-old Federer recorded his second win in three career matches against 111th-ranked Sargsian. But all have been tough encounters.

In the second round of last year's French Open, Federer recovered from two sets down to edge Sargsian, 9-7, in the fifth. But in their first career meeting in 1999, the Armenian No. 1 rallied to beat Federer, 9-7, in the third set, in the semifinals of the grasscourt tournament in Surbiton, England.

Rusedski failed to convert six break points in the first two sets. But with the match on the line, the British No. 2 edged the Dutchman in the second-set tiebreak.

The winner of last month's Heineken Open at Auckland, Rusedski pulled away in the final set to beat Schalken for the second time in as many career meetings.

"I am very, very pleased to get through today. This is the best he has ever played against me," Rusedski said. "I was happy with pretty much everything today apart from the break-point opportunities I did not convert."

Rusedski beat Federer in straight sets in their only previous meeting at the 1999 Vienna hardcourt event.

"He's a tough player on this surface," Federer said of the hard-serving Rusedski. "I got a little bit lucky today (against Sargsian). I need to serve well and play aggressively against Greg."

A day after eliminating top seed Juan Carlos Ferrero, Sanguinetti upset fifth seed Younes El Aynaoui of Morocco, 7-6 (7-5), 7-6 (7-2).

Sanguinetti, 29, spent seven weeks during tennis' short offseason at the ATP training camp in Monte Carlo. The native of Viareggio seems to have benefited from the preparation.

"I haven't played this well in a while," Sanguinetti said. "It means so much to be playing well in Italy."

El Aynaoui demolished Sanguinetti in the opening round at Lyon in October. Marking his fifth first-round exit in six tournaments, that drubbing helped persuade Sanguinetti to work on his game.

"That match in Lyon was a turning point," Sanguinetti said. "All the hard work is paying off. I stay calm on court, I select the best shots, but I am still a player with a lot of ups and downs. So I need to have more ups."

Sanguinetti is the first Italian to reach the semifinals here since Omar Camporese in 1992. The Bologna native went on to beat Goran Ivanisevic and capture one of his two career ATP titles.

Escude's strong play finally has been rewarded with a semifinal berth after his 7-6 (8-6), 6-3 victory over Max Mirnyi of Belarus.

The eighth-year pro was forced withdraw with a groin injury from his quarterfinal match with Argentine qualifier Juan Ignacio Chela at Sydney last month.

A 1998 semifinalist at the Australian Open, Escude ran into former world No. 1 Pete Sampras at the Grand Slam event in Melbourne, falling to the American in five sets.

Playing the role of national hero late last year, Escude recorded singles wins against Lleyton Hewitt and Wayne Arthurs to help lift France to victory over Australia in the 2001 Davis Cup finals.

Escude's only career match against Sanguinetti came at the 1995 Goa claycourt event. The Frenchman won in straight sets.

:)
 

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Sanguinetti, Federer advance to the final at Milan ATP

Associated Press Writer
February 2, 2002


MILAN, Italy (AP) -- Defending champion Roger Federer won a battle of serves and of nerves Saturday to defeat fifth-seeded Greg Rusdeski 7-6 (7), 7-6 (4) and reach the final of the Milan ATP tournament for the second consecutive year.

The 20-year-old Swiss player, the No. 2 seed, advanced to Sunday's final against Italy's Davide Sanguinetti, who defeated Frenchman Nicolas Escude 3-6, 6-3, 6-2.

Federer, who got his first ATP victory in Milan last year, took advantage on lapses by the British player at key points.

After surviving a set point on 5-6 in the first-set tiebreaker, Federer lifted himself to 8-7 and then served an ace to take the set against the No. 7 seed.

Federer, who made headlines at Wimbledon last year when he defeated Pete Sampras in the fourth round, squandered three break points in the 11th game of the second set, held his serve to 6-6 and then rallied to 6-4 in the tiebreak as Rusedski made unforced errors.

``I just needed a bit of luck in the first set, but I had a bad bounce on the set point. In the second tiebreaker I missed one volley and that was it,'' Rusedski said.

Federer won the match with a deep shot to improve his record to 12-1 this year -- his only loss to Tommy Haas in the fourth round of the Australian Open.

``I was very consistent today, especially on my serve,'' Federer said.

Sanguinetti, ranked 87th, had eliminated top seed Juan Carlos Ferrero and No. 5 Younes El Ayanoui.

``I defeated a great champion. Escude perhaps did not think it possible that I could fight back after be broke me in the second set. It's a great joy for me to be in the final in Milan, in Italy,'' Sanguinetti said. ``It's good to play at home, because the crowd helped me to get back into the match.''

Escude, who led France to victory in the Davis Cup final against Australia last year, looked disheartened and faded out after he failed to capitalize on a second-set third-game break, which lifted him to 2-1.

Sanguinetti returned the break in the next game and broke the Frenchman again in the sixth.

:)
 

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Sanguinetti upsets Federer to win Milan Indoor tennis

February 3, 2002

MILAN, ITALY (TICKER) -- By knocking off the top two seeds, unseeded Davide Sanguinetti became the second Italian ever to win the $381,000 Milan Indoor tennis tournament.

Sanguinetti won his first career ATP title Sunday, stunning defending champion and second seed Roger Federer of Switzerland, 7-6 (7-2), 4-6, 6-1.

The 29-year-old Sanguinetti, who also upset top seed Juan Carlos Ferrero in the second round, became the first Italian to win here since Omar Camporese in 1992.

"I knew if I played well I could win today. I've always thought I could belong in the top 30," Sanguinetti said. "Now, I have to prove I can play at this level more consistently. I still have a long way to go and I still have a lot of work to do."

Sanguinetti, who collected the $48,850 winner's check, received the trophy from Camporese.

"I'm the happiest person right now," Sanguinetti said. "To win my first title in Italy is just incredible. I've never had a week like this before."

Participating in the fourth ATP final of his career, Sanguinetti had a shaky start, dropping four of the opening five games. But he fought back and dominated the first-set tiebreaker.

"At that moment, I started to read his game better, particularly his serve," Sanguinetti said.

Sanguinetti had struggled in his first two tour events of 2002, failing to qualify for the main draw at Sydney and losing in the first round of the Australian Open.

By contrast, Federer lost just his second match in 14 to start the year. The Swiss star won the Sydney tournament before losing a tough five-setter to Tommy Haas in the fourth round at Melbourne.

"I was ready for a tough match," Federer said. "I started well but then let him back into the match. I'm not surprised he played so well. It would be a dream for me too, to win my hometown tournament. He really deserved to win today.

"I'm a little bit tired after Australia but it's normal because I've played a lot of matches this year."

Federer lost for the third time in his last four ATP finals. He also fell to Nicolas Escude of France at Rotterdam last February and Tim Henman of Britian at Basel in October.


:)
 
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