Open De Nice Cote D'Azur 2014: Daily Scores, Results and Schedule
As the French Open approached, the 2014 edition of the Open de Nice Cote d'Azur was one of the final tournaments leading into the Grand Slam at Roland Garros.
The clay surfaces of the courts in Nice, France, were a great way for players to get ready for the subtle nuances at the French Open, and the Open de Nice Cote d'Azur was the perfect way for many players to build confidence and momentum heading into a major tournament.
While the field lacked many of the biggest names in the sport, there were plenty of recognizable faces looking to claim their stake on the Open de Nice Cote d'Azur championship.
It was No. 2 seed Ernests Gulbus that eventually walked away with the title.
Talented players like No. 1 seed John Isner, No. 3 seed Gael Monfils, No. 4 seed Gilles Simon and No. 5 seed Dmitry Tursunov all attempted to make a serious splash in this tournament, but failed to be victorious.
Isner told Kate Flory of ATPWorldTour.com during the Madrid Open about his play on clay and building momentum moving forward:
It’s been up and down [this season]. I’ve lost some first rounds, but in the tournaments where I’ve been able to win my first match, I’ve been able to keep on winning from there. I’m very pleased with the year so far. For me, it’s all about how I do outside of the United States, I need to do better and I’m off to a good start.
After the inaugural Open de Nice Cote d'Azur was won by Richard Gasquet in 2010, it was Nicolas Almagro who won back-to-back titles in 2011 and 2012. Albert Montanes was the defending 2013 tournament champion.
Many of the top players in the tournament were focused on getting ready for the French Open later this month, and the Open de Nice Cote d'Azur was the perfect warm-up for the athletes and the fans excited for the French Open.
*All stats and information via ATPWorldTour.com.
1. John Isner (USA)
2. Ernests Gulbis (LAT)
3. Gael Monfils (FRA)
4. Gilles Simon (FRA)
5. Dmitry Tursunov (RUS)
6. Nicolas Mahut (FRA)
7. Federico Delbonis (ARG)
8. Edouard Roger-Vasselin (FRA)
Day 6 Results
(2) Ernests Gulbus def. (7) Federico Delbonis; 6-1, 7-6
Gulbis moved his career record in finals to 6-0 by dispatching Delbonis in straight sets. It's his second title of the season after winning the Open 13, also held in France, back in February.
It looked like the match was going to become a total blowout in the first set. Gulbis scored two breaks, only faced a single break point and won 65 percent of the points en route to grabbing quick advantage.
Give credit to Delbonis for fighting back strong to at least make it more competitive in the second set. Neither player was able to score a break, sending the set to a tiebreak. Gulbis rose to the occasion and was able to close out the match, 7-5.
Winning the title, his first on clay, should give the Latvian star an added boost of confidence heading into the French Open. He's the No. 18 seed in the second major tournament of the year and will open play with a clash against Lukasz Kubot.
If he plays like he did throughout the Open de Nice Cote d'Azur, he's a solid sleeper selection to make a deep run at Roland Garros.
Day 5 Results
Day 5 Results
No. 2 Ernests Gulbis def. Albert Montanes; 6-0, 6-3
No. 7 Federico Delbonis def. No. 4 Gilles Simon; 6-2, 6-4
Day 5 Recap
While there was plenty of excitement heading into the semifinals, both matches were over before you knew it as Ernests Gulbis and Federico Delbonis each won in straight sets.
Gulbis was involved in a sloppy match with Albert Montanes as the two players combined for 11 double faults. The No. 2 seed especially struggled with his accuracy on the first serve throughout the match, getting less than half of the shots in play.
However, that first serve was almost impossible to stop when the location was there. The Latvian star won 26-of-27 first-serve points with four aces. He also saved six of his seven break points in the match to secure the win while dropping only three games.
In the other semifinal, Delbonis only had slightly more trouble upsetting the No. 4 seeded Gilles Simon. The 23-year-old player was only broken once and did a good job defensively against Simon's first serve to help him pull out the victory.
This is the second major upset in a row for Delbonis after defeating No. 1 John Isner in the quarterfinals. He will try to keep this up against Gulbis in the finals to win his second clay title of the season.
Meanwhile, Gulbis has already earned a title in France this year at Marseille, but he has never won a singles championship on clay. This could be a breakthrough for him heading into Roland Garros.
Day 4 Results
Day 4 Results
Albert Montanes defeats Leonardo Mayer; 6-7, 6-4, 6-4
Gilles Simon defeats Carlos Berlocq; 6-4, 6-1
No. 7 Federico Delbonis defeated No. 1 John Isner; 6-4, 5-7, 7-6 (6)
No. 2 Ernests Gulbis defeats No. 5 Dmitry Tursunov; 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 (5)
Day 4 Recap
Thursday's slate of matches featured all four quarterfinal matches, but with two unseeded players facing off, it guaranteed some unpredictable semifinal matchups.
But few expected John Isner to be out by the semis, and that's now the reality after Isner was ousted in a three-set thriller by seventh-seeded Federico Delbonis.
Isner wasn't the only seeded player to go down. No. 5 Dmitry Tursunov fought and fought, but couldn't get past second-seeded Ernests Gulbis in three sets.
Defending champion Albert Montanes also kept his hopes alive for a second straight victory at the tournament, defeating Leandro Mayer in three sets—winning six games in each of them.
In the final match, Gilles Simon toppled Carlos Berlocq in straight sets.
Heading into the semifinals, Montanes will try to keep his repeat bid alive against Gulbis—the lowest seed left in the field. Meanwhile, Simon will face Delbonis for a spot in the final.
Day 3 Results
Day 3 Results
No. 1 John Isner defeats Jack Sock, 6-4, 6-3
No. 2 Ernests Gulbis defeats Martin Klizan, 6-7 (4), 6-4, 6-1
No. 5 Dmitry Tursunov defeats Robin Haase, 6-3, 6-4
Carlos Berlocq defeats No. 6 Nicolas Mahut, 6-2, 6-3
No. 7 Federico Delbonis defeats Paul-Henri Mathieu, 6-2, 6-4
Leonardo Mayer defeats No. 8 Edouard Roger-Vasselin, 6-4, 3-6, 7-5
Albert Montanes defeats Sam Querrey, 4-6, 6-3, 6-2
Day 3 Recap
The 2014 Open de Nice Cote d'Azur tournament kicked into high gear on Wednesday with several of the top seeds in action.
No. 1 seed John Isner defeated fellow American Jack Sock, 6-4, 6-3. His straight-set victory once again proved his dominance at the event and proved him worthy of the top seed.
No. 2 seed Ernests Gulbis was able to hold on for a hard-fought victory over Martin Klizan, 6-7 (4), 6-4, 6-1. No. 5 seed Dmitry Tursunov and No. 7 seed Federico Delbonis also managed to advance to the second round.
As for No. 6 seed Nicolas Mahut and No. 8 seed Edouard Roger-Vasselin, a loss on Wednesday was an end to their title hopes in Nice and a rough start as they prepare for the French Open later this month.
With the tournament heating up fast, Thursday’s matchups are can’t miss for tennis fans.
Day 2 Results
Day 2 Results
Martin Klizan def. Bernard Tomic (4-6, 6-3, 6-4)
Robin Haase def. Filippo Volandri (6-3, 6-2)
Carlos Berlocq def. Julien Benneteau (6-1, 4-6, 6-3)
Jack Sock def. Kenny De Schepper (6-4, 6-2)
Dominic Thiem def. Steve Johnson (3-6, 7-6, 7-5)
Day 2 Recap
Although no seeded players were in action, Tuesday's first-round slate of matches at the Open de Nice Cote d'Azur in Nice, France featured several entertaining encounters, including three that went the difference.
Perhaps the biggest name to compete was young Aussie Bernard Tomic. While he has all the potential in the world, his struggles continued as he dropped a three-set affair to Martin Klizan.
In addition to that, it was a tough day for home-country favorites such as Julien Benneteau and Kenny De Schepper. Benneteau dropped a tough three-setter to Carlos Berlocq, while De Schepper fell in straight sets to American Jack Sock.
The loss was particularly disappointing for Benneteau on the heels of his BNP Paribas Primrose Bordeaux title on the Challenger Tour last week. Josh Meiseles of ATPWorldTour.com noted that Benneteau expected to build upon that victory.
"Winning a tournament was very welcomed and it does not happen often in a season," Benneteau said. "The victory gives me confidence to play well in Nice and arrive at Roland Garros hoping to make a good run."
According to ATPWorldTour.com, Sock's win sets up a date with fellow American and No. 1 seed John Isner in the second round. That will certainly be a good test for Sock, and the same can be said for Isner ahead of the French Open.
One American who won't be lucky enough to play in the second round is Steve Johnson. He seemed poised to advance after taking a one-set advantage over Austrian Dominic Thiem, but Thiem bounced back to win a tiebreak in the second set and then close it out in the third.
Despite the lack of elite players in this tournament, it has been competitive thus far. It stands to reason that some of the players competing in Nice will surprise observers at Roland Garros, and this tourney could serve as a springboard for them.
Several players got off to a nice start Tuesday, and they will have an opportunity to keep rolling as the tournament progresses.
Day 1 Results
Day 1 Results
No. 5 Dmitry Tursunov defeats Aleksandr Nedovyesov, 6-1, 6-4
No. 6 Nicolas Mahut defeats Martin Vaisse, 6-7 (4), 6-3, 6-2
Albert Montanes defeats Matthew Ebden, 6-1, 6-3
Day 1 Recap
There were low expectations for the Open de Nice Cote d'Azur considering many fans have already turned their focus to the French Open, but an exciting opening day of action has tennis fans taking note.
Ranked stars Dmitry Tursunov and Nicolas Mahut—No. 5 and No. 6, respectively—both managed to hold off their first-round opponents and advance on the bracket. Unranked player Albert Montanes also won Monday, sealing his spot in the second round.
With Day 1 featuring the conclusion of the qualifying matches and several doubles matches, the excitement surrounding the singles tournament will shift into high gear on Day 2, as many recognizable faces take the court.