Tag Archive: Javier Marti

As we get further into the so-called “off-season”, and more players shut it down for the few weeks that the relentless tennis season allows them to stop playing, we start to see such scheduling decisions impact the rankings.  At the top, there’s a whole lotta nothin’ going on.  But for those willing to keep playing this deep into the season, there are nice gains to be had at the lower levels.

So few players are playing, relatively speaking, that scheduling plays a much larger role in determining Who’s Achieved Their Career Highs this week.  Let’s take a look at this week’s W.A.T.C.H. List:

Player NATIONALITY Age New High Why
Pablo Carreno-Busta ESP 22 64 Przysiezny lost pts
Sam Groth AUS 26 173 Toyota SF
Marton Fucsovics HUN 21 180 Andria W
Tennys Sandgren USA 22 184 others lost points
Kimmer Coppejans BEL 19 251 others lost points
Andrea Collarini ARG 21 255 others lost points
Theodoros Angelinos GRE 29 257 Colombia F7 SF
Egor Gerasimov BLR 21 258 Tyumen QF
Ante Pavic CRO 24 274 Tyumen QF
Aslan Karatsev RUS 20 285 others lost points
Toni Androic CRO 21 294 Croatia F16 QF
Emilio Gomez ECU 21 303 others lost points
Yann Marti SUI 25 307 Andria SF
Marc Rath AUT 23 333 Turkey F46 SF
Piotr Gadomski POL 22 353 Tyumen R2
Jason Jung USA 24 371 Toyota QF
Federico Coria ARG 21 408 Chile F8 QF
Ivan Arenas-Gualdo ESP 23 420 Spain F40 SF
Bastian Trinker AUT 23 422 Greece F20 SF
Ricardo Urzua-Rivera CHI 24 431 others lost points

As you no doubt see, with so few point-gaining events on offer (the Challenger calendar finished up last week with its final 3 events), the ATP #60-300 range that usually populates each week’s List only contains 11 players today, with only 6 of those actually gaining points from tournaments played.  

Since the List is usually at least 20 players long, I reached deeper into the rankings depths to cull this week’s edition (and this will certainly be the case for the remainder of the year). Personally, I’m pleased to be able to feature new names whose achievements occurred even further outside the spotlight than usual.

But first, an achievement that happened within many spotlights (as the Andria Challenger did not skimp on its trophy ceremony light show):

Not Fuc-ing Around

Andria Chally Not Fuc-ing Around

Hungarian gamer Marton Fucsovics found the odds to be ever in his favor as he dropped only a single set on his way to the Andria title, hurdling his previous career high ranking of 230 and jumping 53 spots to his new placement of ATP #180.

Throughout the week, the 21-year-old displayed the great hands, clean ball-striking and remarkable returning that saw him to his former world junior #1 ranking and his 2010 Boys Wimbledon and US Open doubles titles. He might even be one of my ten Players to Watch for 2014 (but you’ll have to wait ’til Sunday to find out, as I hit you up with a new PTW every day the first ten days of December).

*sings* "We will, we will FUC YOU!" *unsings*

*sings* “We will, we will FUC YOU!” *unsings*

Skipping down the List, we see another Andria Achiever, Yann Marti, whose semifinal showing allowed him to vault 55 spots past his former career high of #362 to a new best of #307. In so doing, the 25-year-old Swiss also becomes the highest-ranked Marti on tour, leapfrogging the 21-year-old Javier Marti (one of my 2011 Players To Watch) by two ranking spots.

What Light Doth Yann-der Window Break?

What Light Doth Yann-der Window Break?

Just below Yann, we see that Marc Rath’s adventurous activities (previously chronicled here) now include leaping 40 places to a new career singles high. What depth-defying stunt will the 23-year-old Austrian thrill seeker pull off next? Stay tuned!

Rath (of the Titans)

Rath-er Adventuresome

I’m happy to see that Jason Jung is now appearing on this site in a new way, as he transitions this week from my Reading Lists to my W.A.T.C.H. List, appearing at #371 on your programme. The 24-year-old University of Michigan grad wrote extensively about this week’s Toyota Challenger exploits, so rather than me blathering about it, why don’t you see what he has to say?

Finally, we see a familiar tennistical surname just under Jung’s, as Federico Coria joins his famous brother (and coach) Guillermo in the upper(ish) ranks of the ATP.  The 21-year-old mini-Mago continues a successful(ish) 2013 with a quarterfinal showing at the F8 Futures event in Chile.

He won two Futures events in Argentina this past May, and is competing in this week’s Chile F9 Futures in Santiago, where he’s the 8th seed. We’re likely to see him on upcoming Lists as we close out this tennis year.

Who's Achieved Their Coria High? - photo courtesy of Fue Buena

Who’s Achieved Their Coria High? – photo courtesy of Fue Buena

No, you goons – this is not a special edition for those who’ve contracted certain romance-related diseases. Rather, it’s a special Valentines Day edition of my weekly list detailing Who’s Achieved Their Career Highs (although some would call Valentines Day itself a romance-related disease. I abstain from comment on the grounds that it might incriminate me).

So what makes this Valentines Day edition so special? Nothing really. Only that’s it’s made with love and dedicated to you, dear reader. *gags on sappy sentiment* Also, I’ve added an “age” column. You’re welcome. You know the rules by now, right? Only those ranked #80-350 make my list, unless I’m feeling particularly in an inclusive mood (who knows? On Valentines Day, you may get lucky). For those Titans of the Top 80, you must confer with our friends over at Shank Tennis.

All right! Enough of this tomfoolery. Let’s get to this week’s WATCH List!

Player Age NATION New High Prev High Why?
Grigor Dimitrov 19.75 BULGARIA 84 85 Q’ed, R1 R’dam
Benoit Paire 21.75 FRANCE 120 136 Q’ed, R2 R’dam
Alexander Kudryavtsev 25.25 RUSSIA 141 147 SF Bergamo
Tim Smyczek 23.10 USA 158 168 QF San Jose
Matthias Bachinger 23.90 GERMANY 161 163 R2 Bergamo
Robert Farah 23.25 COLOMBIA 183 184 Q’ed, R1 San Jose
Jurgen Zopp 22.90 ESTONIA 198 211 SF Bergamo
Sebastian Rieschick 24.99 GERMANY 225 228 R2 Quimper
Facundo Bagnis 20.95 ARGENTINA 231 238 Q’ed, R1 Brazil
Andres Molteni 22.92 ARGENTINA 236 246 QF Colombia F2
Alexander Lobkov 20.33 RUSSIA 252 253 Others lost points
Fritz Wolmarans 24.93 S. AFRICA 254 255 Others lost points
Amir Weintraub 24.42 ISRAEL 255 259 R2 Quimper
Phillip Bester 22.35 CANADA 260 268 R2 Caloundra
Clement Reix 27.35 FRANCE 265 270 R2 Quimper
Karan Rastogi 24.35 INDIA 284 328 W Cambodia F2
Javier Marti 19.10 SPAIN 295 308 R2 Spain F5
Kenny de Schepper 23.70 FRANCE 297 370 F Quimper
Ludovic Walter 28.10 FRANCE 304 315 R2 Quimper

Notable things to note:

The average age of this week’s WATCHers is 23 years old and 4 months. The youngest player achieving a career high today is Javier Marti at 19 and 1 month, while the oldest is former Duke University standout (two-time ITA All-American) Ludovic Walter at 28 and 1 month (warning: all age numbers are achieved by rounding off, for the most part, and are thus approximations).

Ludovic Walter quimping it up at the Quimper Challenger in France

Walter is an interesting case, having not even achieved a pro ranking until after his college days were over in 2006 at age 23. I suspect that, with college ball being an increasingly viable route for top talents and the age of the Top 100 skewing ever older, we’ll start to see many more players in the “Ludovic Walter” mold in the future.

Anyway, congrats to all who’ve achieved career highs this week. And to all the rest of you, I hope you achieve various highs of your own on this Valentines Day.

As in “O Holy Night” – ’cause this is the 8th part of my 12 Days of Christmas series (and the players I’m profiling today speak Spanish), geddit?  Yeah – I’m not so thrilled with that joke either.  Let’s move on…

So, on this eighth day of Challenger Tennis Christmas, I have to say: I am the luckiest SOB on the planet. Why is that, you may wonder (if you’re the wondering sort)? Well, it’s because the two players who have been on my 2011 Players to Watch list/radar happen to be featured together in the most spectacular video I’ve featured to date. If you do nothing else today, I beseech you to skip my stupid words and pictures (if you must) and go directly to the “Javier Marti – Andrea Collarini final match in Palafrugellvid at the end of this article and, of course, watch it. If I do nothing else with this article other than getting you to watch that video, then it’s been a success.

Anyway, as you may have guessed – if you’re the deductive type – today’s 2011 Players to Watch are Javier Marti and Andrea Collarini. We’ll start with Javier. The 18 year-old from Spain made an early name for himself by winning the European Championships (U12) at age 11.   As with the course of many a Spanish prodigy, he largely left juniors behind in his mid-teens (he had always played up a level in juniors anyway), posting two quarterfinal and one semifinal showing in 2008 and finishing the year ranked #847 at age 16.

He started 2009 a rickety 9/15 but had twice the success in the second half of his season, going 18/15 to finish at 27/30 for the year. This year, Marti overcame an 0-5 start to his 2010 campaign to win his first pro tournament at the Bulgaria F3 Futures event in May.

But he didn’t stop there; the speedy-wiry Spaniard with the liquid backhand went on to take titles in Romania and Portugal as well, finishing at a 54/28 pace, gaining 350 spots on the ATP ladder and slicing his ranking in (more than) half, from #685 to #335. He’s now the fifth-youngest player in the Top 400, behind Bernard Tomic, yesterday’s profilee Facundo Arguello, Ryan Harrison and Filip Krajinovic.

Though he didn’t have much success at the Challenger level, going 6/9 on the year, he did post wins over Sam Groth and Alex Ward, and I strongly suspect that his results will only continue to improve has he fills out and gets stronger. According to his coach, Oscar Burrieza, there’s a lot he can do to get better mentally as well. I’ll have the opportunity to see him play in a few weeks, as he’s on the entry list for the USA F2 Futures in Tamarac, FL. I’m very much looking forward to my first chance to see him play in person.

OK, I got some vids for ya. This first one, which I trust you skipped right to (per my instructions), is of Collarini and Marti facing off in a U16 battle in Palafrugell Spain. I won’t spoil the outcome for you – you’ll just have to watch and see. What I will say, is that – with its hilariously epic music and descriptive documentation – I hope and expect this holcombBrook masterpiece to one day be looked back upon as a vital document of two talents who have since made it big. Their games may have changed a bit since then, but this vid provides terrific audiovisual insight into the sometimes awkward and hard-to-read lefty game of Collarini, as well as the tremendous racquet head speed of the Marti forehand and his comparatively compact and smooth swing off the backhand side. Great stuff!

I kinda dig this next vid for its practically subterranean vantage point – cool setting, too. I also like that Marti looks to attack, and is not just content to slug it out from the baseline. This is pretty recent footage, taken from a 6-4 5-7 6-3 win over Alessandro Gianessi (himself a former Top 40 junior) at the Spain F33 in September:

(p.s. watching parts 2 & 3 is recommended as well – there’s even some S & V in part 3!)

And lastly, but not Jason Priestley… you’re not going to learn a whole lot from this next video, but I’m including it for the following reasons: 1) the soundtrack, in a word, rules, b) Morgan Phillips is in it, and iii) Marti is having none of the net hug at the end. All of which makes it a pretty entertaining selection, to my eyes and ears:

That footage is from the final of Spain’s F34, by the way. Which took place just after the Spain F33 footage was taken, I’ll point out in case you’re quite dense.

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