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Old 05-20-2012, 01:51 PM   #46
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Default Re: Brian Baker

63 63 over Gonzalez, draws Stakhovsky in the main draw (winner gets Monfils). Good luck Brian.
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Old 05-20-2012, 05:55 PM   #47
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Default Re: Brian Baker

Congrats on the main draw Brian! What a great story!
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Old 05-21-2012, 02:51 AM   #48
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Default Re: Brian Baker

The WSJ: The Wonder That Tennis Forgot
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Old 05-22-2012, 05:14 PM   #49
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Default Re: Brian Baker

Brian beat Stakhovsky! He was down a break several times in the second and third sets. Great win!
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Old 05-22-2012, 08:20 PM   #50
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Default Re: Brian Baker

Congrats Brian, first ATP Tour win since 2005
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Old 05-23-2012, 12:38 AM   #51
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Default Re: Brian Baker

Baker Rides Comeback Wave In Nice

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World No. 216 Brian Baker won his first tour-level match since 2005 on Tuesday, grinding out a 6-7(2), 6-4, 7-5 victory over 84th-ranked Sergiy Stakhovsky in his ATP World Tour clay-court debut at the Open de Nice Côte d’Azur.

Baker last celebrated tour-level success when he stunned ninth-ranked Gaston Gaudio at the US Open nearly seven years ago.

“I'm really excited. I haven't played too many tour-level events,” Baker told ATPWorldTour.com. “This was my second this year after losing in the Memphis qualies. Anytime I can win a tour-level match, it's a big thing. In the past, I only won four the last time around. I never proved myself at the tour-level before, so now it was very gratifying to keep the momentum going from Savannah.”

The 27-year-old American is playing his first tournament since capping off a memorable run to the Savannah Challenger title, which saw him clinch the USTA's wild card berth into Roland Garros. Baker took a week off to relish the win at home, and then trained for a week at the Saddlebrook Tennis Academy in Wesley Chapel, Florida to prepare for the ATP World Tour 250 event in Nice. His work paid off, as he came through the qualifying dropping just 13 games in three matches.

“I've said before that qualifying can be a good thing if you can get through without having to spend too much energy on the court,” said Baker.

“I was lucky enough to do that. It helped me get some match-like situations under my belt before I played. [Stakhovsky] is a great player and I knew I'd have to come out and play well to win. It was a really tight match, decided by a few points here and there, and I was fortunate to win the last point.”

Baker will face his biggest test since defeating Gaudio at Flushing Meadows, taking on 13th-ranked Frenchman Gael Monfils in the next round. Coincidentally, Baker defeated both Stakhovsky and Monfils in his final year of junior competition in 2003, but the former Roland Garros boys’ singles finalist was quick to brush aside those results.

“That was nine years ago. Maybe it's a good thing to know you beat the guy before, but I don't put much stock into that,” Baker said. “They are completely different players and so am I. I'm playing a guy who has been in the Top 10 before. He's a great player. He's from France and we're playing in France, so he's going to be the crowd favourite. I have a big test ahead of me.”

Monfils is appearing in Nice for the second time, having lost in the quarter-finals two years ago in the tournament’s debut. This is just the sixth time in Baker’s career that he will square off against a player ranked inside the Top 50 of the South African Airways ATP Rankings.

“I'm going to have to go out and play well, coming up with my best tennis. I need to get off to a good start,” believes Baker. “It's going to be a very tough match. You have to go into every match thinking you're going to win; otherwise you shouldn't go on the court. I'll go out there with a lot of confidence and will hopefully play a good match.”
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Old 05-23-2012, 08:12 PM   #52
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Default Re: Brian Baker

Brian beat Monfils!! What an amazing win!
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Old 05-23-2012, 08:55 PM   #53
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Default Re: Brian Baker

Congrats Brian
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Old 05-23-2012, 09:18 PM   #54
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Default ADNA Athlete Bio: Brian Baker – His Trip Back to Paris

http://athleticdnablog.com/adna-athl...er-trip-paris/

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In our never-ending quest to find athletes proving they were Born For This, we must celebrate ADNA athlete Brian Baker. Brian began his tennis career early (by the age of 2 ½ as you’ll learn in the interview below), but suffered an unlucky streak of injuries that took him from French Open hopeful in 2005, to again French Open hopeful returning to Paris almost a decade later.

Brian was first stricken with a wrist injury that pulled him from the game for 10 weeks. Shortly after recovering, he tore his MCL in a Wimbledon qualifying match against Djokovic. Brian nursed his knee and resumed playing, only to then feel pain in his left hip. Hip surgery came, shortly followed by surgery for a sports hernia. Meanwhile, Brian’s elbow never quit bothering him, particularly during his serve, leading to Tommy John surgery. Next up, two more surgeries on his left and right hip – all by the age of 23.

At this point, Brian took some time to go back to college and let his body heal. He was amazed to find that hitting with the college team didn’t hurt. In fact his body responded well to training. He entered small regional tournaments, paid his own way, drove for hours, and won some payouts. It wasn’t a comeback yet, but his body kept going.

Going Back to the French Open

That leads us to his recent success in Georgia and Florida. The USTA awarded Brian a main-draw berth to next weekend’s French Open based on his title win in Savannah, and second round finish in Sarasota.

From the moment Brian knew he wanted tennis to be his life, he sacrificed a normal childhood, missed classes, school events, and parties with his friends. He played in Europe by the time he was 12, became the top 18-and-under U.S. player at age 15, and was once summoned to Andy Roddick’s Florida house to play tennis in the backyard, according to an interview with him in the Wall Street Journal.



PHOTOS BY JAE S. LEE / THE TENNESSEAN

When was the first time you touched a racket?
I was about 2 ½ years old. We had a tennis court in the backyard, and it helped that I had two older siblings who played.

Why do you focus on tennis over other sports?
Although I enjoy a lot of other sports such as basketball and baseball, I have a passion for the individual aspect of tennis. I love knowing that I control my own destiny every day. Also, I have the most talent in tennis. (Don’t talk like that Brian, we bet you’re pretty good with a baseball bat too!)

If not playing tennis, what do you think you would be doing right now with your life?
I would probably be finishing my college degree. After that, I would either be trying to get my foot in the door of college coaching, or doing something with finance.

Why do you like to wear Athletic DNA clothes?
I like ADNA because the clothes are high quality, and are very colorful. I also really like the fact that ADNA focuses on tennis, while all of the other big companies focus on clothing and accessories for many sports.

Do you have any tips for the junior players looking to follow in your footsteps?
My advice is to have no regrets. Give everything you have every day, and then you can never second guess yourself. In addition, tennis is becoming more-and-more physical, so taking care of your body is a must.

Is tennis gaining popularity and fame?
I’m not sure if tennis is gaining more popularity, but I think the men’s game is in great shape. There are several great rivalries out there now, and the tennis is amazing. One idea to increase the popularity of the game is to find a way to incorporate more Pro-Ams during Pro events. Bringing the fans and sponsors closer to the players definitely can’t hurt.
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Old 05-23-2012, 09:26 PM   #55
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Default Re: Brian Baker

Tennis.com: Baker's Back: Former junior star makes unlikely return
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Old 05-23-2012, 11:49 PM   #56
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Default Re: Brian Baker

Brian's official twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/BBakesTennis

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Brian Baker‏@BBakesTennis

Thanks for the support everyone! Time to recharge and do it again tomorrow.
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Old 05-24-2012, 09:01 PM   #57
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Default Re: Brian Baker

Congrats to Brian on making his first ATP tour semifinal (def. Kukushkin 46 63 76(4) saving match point), good luck against Davy tomorrow .
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Old 05-24-2012, 10:28 PM   #58
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Default Re: Brian Baker

Another great win for Brian! Good luck against Davydenko
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Old 05-25-2012, 12:05 AM   #59
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Default Re: Brian Baker



Baker Keeps the American Dream Alive in Nice. Reaches First ATP Semi

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(May 24, 2012)—Brian Baker's unlikely run at the Open de Nice Cote D'azur continued today in fine form, as the American saved a match point en route to a thrilling three-set victory over Mikhail Kukushkin, 4-6, 6-3, 7-6(4). For Baker, who had not won an ATP-level match since 2005 heading into this week, the win marks the American's first trip to a tour-level semifinal.

Baker, who trailed 2-4 in the third set and saved a match point while serving at 5-6, will next face Russian former world No. 3Nikolay Davydenko in the semifinals.
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Old 05-25-2012, 12:16 AM   #60
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Default ATP Nice: The road to semifinal





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