TENNIS: From Dubai to Madison Square Garden

From a win in Dubai…to Madison Square Garden in New York to play an exhibition match with Andy Roddick…

Roger Federer managed to win his fifth Dubai Title on Saturday, downing Andy Murray (7-5, 6-4) and completing a week in the United Arab Emirates without dropping a set. That’s Roger’s 72nd ATP World Tour Title. Andy Murray deserves credit as well, coming off a semifinal win over Australian Open Champion Novak Djokovic…a straight-setter that lasted just 82-minutes!

Andy Roddick, on the other hand, was defeated by South African Kevin Anderson midweek down in Delray Beach. Kevin then went on to beat John Isner in the semifinals and Marinko Matosevic of Australia in the final on Sunday.

If the name “Kevin Anderson” sounds familiar to my Southwest Missouri family, that’s because he’s played for the WTT Springfield Lasers and Coach JL de Jaeger during the past two seasons.

Tonight’s BNP Paribas Showdown not only features Federer and Roddick, but Maria Sharapova and Caroline Wozniacki – all playing the best of three sets.

Also over the weekend, David Ferrer won again – this time for the third consecutive year at the Mexican Open in Acapulco. He easily defeated Fernando Verdasco in the final (6-1, 6-2).

On the ladies side at the Malaysian Open, Croatia’s Petra Martic had to play both her semifinal and final on Sunday. After defeating Jelena Jankovic in a marathon match 6-7 (5), 7-5, 7-6 (5); she then retired during the third set of the final with Taiwan’s Hsieh Su-Wei 6-2, 5-7, 1-4 (retired).

The ladies also played on clay at the Mexican Open, where Sara Errani defeated fellow Italian Flavia Pennetta 5-7, 7-6 (2), 6-0 in the final on Saturday.

This week, both the guys and ladies head to California’s high desert for the BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells (starting Wednesday and Thursday).

Go get ’em Noonan! In fact, I have a pretty good feeling that Todd will be the guest tennis blog poster over the next two weeks. Thanks in advance – it’s much more exciting coming from the on-site author behind the sport presentation. Enjoy the sunshine, buddy – my best to Andrew – and have a great tournament!