Gaudio To Return As Moya Targets Seven In A Row
The 2004 French Open champion Gaston Gaudio will make his debut on the ATP Champions Tour in Medellin, Colombia next month as Carlos Moya goes for his seventh successive title.
Gaudio is best remembered for defeating fellow Argentine Guillermo Coria in the Roland Garros final to become the first Argentine to win a Grand Slam title since Guillermo Vilas in 1979. Though it was to be the only Major title in Gaudio’s 15 year career, the 33-year-old went on to reach a career-high ranking of No.5 and be a prolific Davis Cup competitor for Argentina.
At his maiden event in Medellin, Gaudio will have to contend with the ATP Champions Tour’s man of the moment, Moya, who has won six consecutive titles since making his own Tour debut in Colombia’s capital, Bogota, last year. The Spaniard has already won titles in 2012 in Delray Beach and in Zurich, and is leading the South African Airways Rankings by 400 points from Stockholm Champion John McEnroe. Though Moya will be keen to extend his majestic run of form in Medellin, the Spaniard is also excited by the arrival of exciting younger players like Gaudio to the ATP Champions Tour.
“I think it’s good for the Tour to have this competition,” he said. “It is a challenge for everyone else to beat me. I am happy that I still play well and I am in good shape but I am not unbeatable. I have lost twice on the Tour in the past year and there are definitely guys out there like (Mark) Philippoussis, (Marat) Safin, (Thomas) Enqvist that play at the same level, especially on a faster court.”
Moya and Gaudio will be joined in Medellin from May 3-6 by Chilean hero Marcelo Rios, ‘The Little Magician’ Fabrice Santoro and Medellin native Michael Quintero, with one name yet to be announced.
Matches are played over the best of three sets, with a Champions’ Tie-break (first to 10 points with a clear advantage of two) to decide the winner. After all round-robin matches are complete, the top two players in each group will meet in Tuesday's final.
After Medellin, the ATP Champions Tour travels to The Grand Champions Brazil in Sao Paulo, (May 10-13).
CURRENT RANKING OF THE ATP CHAMPIONS TOUR:
1. Carlos Moya 800
2. John McEnroe 400
3. Stefan Edberg 380
4. Ivan Lendl 300
5. Magnus Larsson 300
6. Pat Cash 220
7. Mikael Pernfors 210
8. Goran Ivanisevic 200
9. Michael Chang 200
10.Mark Philippoussis 200
Delray Beach, Florida Feb. 24-28, 2012
Stockholm, Sweden Mar. 13-16, 2012
Zurich, Switzerland March 20-24, 2012
Medellin, Colombia May 3-6, 2012
Sao Paulo, Brazil May 10-13, 2012
Knokke-Heist, Belgium Aug. 16-19, 2012
Poland September, 2012
Chengdu, China Oct. 25-28, 2012
Santiago, Chile Nov. 8-11, 2012
London, United Kingdom Dec. 5-9, 2012