Ivanisevic set to retire
24 March 2002
Goran Ivanisevic is ready to admit defeat to injury and retire from tennis - but only after he has defended his Wimbledon title. For the second time in as many tournaments, the Croat has been forced out by his long-standing shoulder problem.
He retired from the Nasdaq-100 Open Masters while leading Argentine Franco Squillari 4-3.
Ivanisevic knows his days on the professional circuit are numbered.
But he is prepared to play no tennis at all until Wimbledon in order to be present when the tournament he won so dramatically last year starts again.
"I had my dream," said the 30-year-old who beat Pat Rafter in five sets at the All England Club after entering as a wildcard.
"I said last year, if somebody told me you can win Wimbledon and not play tennis ever again, I'd pick win Wimbledon. Maybe God heard me and said 'Okay, it's enough for you'."
Surgery is no longer an option so instead Ivanisevic will go into hibernation for almost three months - including missing his country's Davis Cup tie in Argentina.
"I want to be there at one o'clock on Monday in London," he said, referring to the opening day at Wimbledon.
"I want to play Wimbledon, that's my priority.
"The plan is I take two, three months off and play Wimbledon. That is the only solution.
"Maybe I might see how it feels and then play the French Open. I don't know, I tell you it's tough. I'm going to go crazy in those two and a half months.
"But the worse thing is if I take the whole clay season off and I come to Wimbledon and then it's the same pain then I will hang myself in London somewhere.
"That would be the worst scenario."
The Wimbledon champion explained that a tear in his shoulder is "just getting bigger and bigger and the pain is getting more and more which I cannot handle."
He added: "The doctor told me it's a lottery.
"One week can be good, three weeks can be bad.
"That's why I didn't want to operate last year because I thought with the amount of pain I had last year I could survive another season. "But I wasn't thinking it was going to be worse which it is."
Ivanisevic Ponders Layoff After Fresh Retirement
23 March 2002
By Steve Keating
MIAMI (Reuters) - Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic said on Saturday that it may finally be time to pay up.
For the second time in as many tournaments the 14th seeded Croat was forced out by his troublesome left shoulder, retiring from his opening round match at the Nasdaq-100 Open Masters while leading Argentine Franco Squillari 4-3.
And with his shoulder and another appearance at Wimbledon hanging by a thread, Ivanisevic thinks maybe God is trying to tell him something.
"I had my dream," Ivanisevic said. "I said last year, if somebody told me you can win Wimbledon and not play tennis ever again, I'd pick win Wimbledon.
"Maybe God heard me and said, 'Ok, it's enough for you'."
More painful than his shoulder for the fiery Croat are thoughts that he may not be able to defend the title he claimed in five delirious sets from Australia's Patrick Rafter last July.
On the brink of retirement, Ivanisevic arrived at the gates of the All-England Club last year hat-in-hand and penned one of the year's most compelling stories by turning a wildcard into unexpected triumph.
But the 30-year-old Croat believes he has one last chapter to write in his remarkable tale and if his shoulder has only one more tournament left in it, Ivanisevic wants that tournament to be Wimbledon.
With surgery no longer an option, Ivanisevic said he was considering not playing anymore events and resting his shoulder until Wimbledon but cringed at the thought of nearly three months without tennis.
"I want to be there at one o'clock on Monday in London," said Ivanisevic, adding that he was unlikely to play Davis Cup tennis in two weeks when Croatia travels to Buenos Aires to take on Argentina.
"I want to play Wimbledon, that's my priority.
"The plan is I take two, three months off and play Wimbledon...that is the only solution.
"Maybe I might see how it feels and then play the French Open.
"I don't know, I tell you it's tough. I'm going to go crazy two and a half months."
"But the worse think is if I take the whole clay season off and I come to Wimbledon and then it's the same pain then I will hang myself in London somewhere.
"That would be the worse scenario."
It has been a frustrating season for the hard-hitting Croat.
Since crashing out in the second round of the Australian Open Ivanisevic has not won a match, failing to clear the first hurdle at Milan, Rotterdam and Dubai, withdrawing from Indian Wells and now retiring from Miami.
"The tear is just getting bigger and bigger and the pain is getting more and more which I cannot handle," admitted Ivanisevic. "The doctor told me it's a lottery.
"One week can be good, three weeks can be bad.
"That's why I didn't want to operate last year because I thought with the amount of pain I had last year I could survive another season.
"But I wasn't thinking it was going to be worse which it is."
Liverpool Grasscourt Event Given Green Light
22 March 2002
By Ossian Shine
LONDON (Reuters) - Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic will be allowed to warm up for the defense of his grand slam crown on Liverpool public park tennis courts after the ATP ruled that the event was not in breach of tour rules.
The Liverpool International Tournament, which will also feature former world number one Marat Safin, had been thrown into doubt in its inaugural year over an ATP ruling which states tournaments held in the same week must not be staged within 100 miles of each other.
The concern rested on the fact that the Lawn Tennis Association's grasscourt event in Nottingham fell within that distance -- as the crow flies.
But on Friday the ATP backed the Liverpool event after discussions with the LTA and the tournament promoter settled that by road Nottingham was outside the 100 mile limit.
Promoter Mike Ross said: "I'm delighted we have been able to resolve this issue. I understand the LTA's concerns and that they had a right to seek clarification from the ATP.
"It was a hurdle we had to jump and it's fantastic that it has been settled in such a quick time.
"It's all systems go now and I'm looking forward to an exciting week of tennis. Of course the beauty of this is that tennis fans have two top quality events to enjoy before Wimbledon."
An LTA spokesman echoed Ross's comments. "The LTA remains committed to bringing top class internationals to all parts of Britain," he said. "Now that the agreement has been reached we can look forward to a highly successful program of grasscourt tennis this summer."
The grasscourt tournament at Calderstones Park, in the leafy suburbs of Liverpool, north-west England, begins on June 16.
The 24-man event will be the first major tennis tournament in Britain to be held in a public park.
Organizers are currently preparing the courts and a tented village will be created for the event, complete with an 6,500-seater arena.
Goran nominated for comeback award
21 March 2002
LONDON: Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic has been nominated for the World Comeback of the Year prize in the 2002 Laureus Sports Awards. The Croat entered Wimbledon with a triple-figure world ranking and a persistent shoulder problem, but beat Pat Rafter in a thrilling five-set final to become the first wildcard to win a Grand Slam singles crown. American basketball player Michael Jordan, Canadian ice hockey player Mario Lemieux and golfers John Daly and Bernhard Langer have also been nominated for the honour.
Last year’s World Sportsman of the Year winner Tiger Woods has again been listed for the award, along with fellow Americans Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong and world 100m champion Maurice Greene. They are up against Germany’s F1 world champion Michael Schumacher and Australian swimmer Ian Thorpe.
The winners will be selected by the World Sports Academy - which is made up of top sporting personalities such as Boris Becker, Bobby Charlton and Ed Moses - and announced in Monaco on May 14.
Sportsman of the Year:
Lance Armstrong (US, cycling), Maurice Greene (US, athletics), Michael Schumacher (Ger, motor racing), Ian Thorpe (Aus, swimming), Tiger Woods (US, golf).
Sportswoman of the Year:
Jennifer Capriati (US, tennis), Venus Williams (US, tennis), Inge de Bruijn (Ned, swimming), Stacy Dragila (US, athletics), Annika Sorenstam (Swe, golf).
Team of the Year:
Australian cricket team, Bayern Munich Soccer Club, French Davis Cup team, Ferrari’s Formula One motor racing team, LA Lakers basketball team.
Newcomer of the Year:
Kim Clijsters (Bel, tennis), Justine Henin (Bel, tennis), Andy Roddick (US, tennis), Steven Gerrard (Eng, football), Juan Pablo Montoya (Col, motor racing).
Comeback of the Year:
John Daly (US, golf), Goran Ivanisevic (Cro, tennis), Michael Jordan (US, basketball), Bernhard Langer (Ger, golf), Mario Lemieux (Can, ice hockey).
Sportsperson of the Year with a Disability:
Heidi Andreasen (Faroe Islands, swimming), Earle Connor (Can, athletics), Gerd Schonfelder (Ger, Alpine skiing), Beat Schwarzenbach (Swi, cycling), Esther Vergeer (Ned, wheelchair tennis).
Alternative Sportsperson of the Year:
Bob Burnquist (Bra, skateboarding), Will Gadd (Can, paragliding), Umberto Pelizzari (Ita, free diving), Elena Repko (Ukr, speed climbing), Mat Hoffman (US, BMX cycling). -Reuters
Goran recognised by 2002 Laureus Sport Awards
20 March 2002
Dubbed the 'Oscars of Sport' the Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic heads the nominations for the World Comeback of the Year prize.
The Croat entered Wimbledon with a triple-figure world ranking and a persistent shoulder problem, but defeated Australia Pat Rafter in a thrilling five-set final to become the first wildcard to win a grand slam singles crown.
King Goran set to quit
14 March 2002
By CHARLIE WYETT
GORAN IVANISEVIC faces a massive fitness fight to save his career from a shoulder injury.
Wimbledon champion Ivanisevic, 30, is to take a rest from tennis after being forced to pull out of the Pacific Life Open in the United States.
Ivanisevic, who became the first wild card to win Wimbledon, is determined to defend his title despite the recurring injury he has suffered over the last couple of years.
The Croat does not want surgery and insists he would rather quit than go under the knife.
Reports in his native Split have suggested that he is ready to quit now.
But Ivanisevic said: "I will take a break for a few weeks - possibly even months - to be fit. The main aim is to play at Wimbledon again."
Ivanisevic beat Aussie Pat Rafter to win the men's singles title last summer. He was forced to withdraw from the Pacific Open in Indian Wells before facing German Rainer Schuettler, whom he had already beaten this year.
The big-server is certain to miss next week's Masters Series tournament in Miami.
He could also sit out the beginning of the clay court season next month.
Ivanisevic's tennis debut in Liverpool under threat
14 March 2002
THE pre-Wimbledon exhibition tournament in Liverpool, which will include Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic, is under threat from the Lawn Tennis Association, whose role is to promote the game.
The tournament is a 24-man event starting the week before Wimbledon on June 17, the same time as an ATP competition in Nottingham. The LTA have cited a ruling that says tournaments must not be staged within 100 miles of each other. Nottingham and Liverpool are only 90 miles apart as the crow flies.
Michael Ross, the promoter of the tournament, said: "The LTA are desperately looking for a loop-hole to stop the tournament. The 100 miles is a general guide - it doesn't specify how the calculation should be made.
"There are over 200 top players in England at that time and Nottingham is only a 32-man event, so our tournament will give other players the chance to practise before Wimbledon. Ivanisevic, Marat Safin and Jean-Michael Gambill have already agreed to take part. I have told the LTA that if it is the location that is the problem I will switch the International Tennis Tournament to another site in the UK."
Dave Simms, the project director of Liverpool's inner city tennis programme, said: "The tennis programme here is one of the largest programmes in the world. We have 800 regular participants and the programme reaches 10,000 people a year.
"It would be a great disappointment if the tournament didn't go ahead. We work really hard to promote tennis. The ATP and LTA can make this happen."
An ATP spokesman confirmed they were in talks over whether to stop players competing in Liverpool. He said: "At the moment no decision has been made and we are still discussing the matter with the promoters in Liverpool and the LTA."
An LTA spokeswoman said: "Obviously we want the top players to attend in Nottingham, but it would be unfair to say Liverpool is being reconsidered because of us.
"The ATP make the final decision whether the players can compete. If anyone had come to us beforehand and said they were proposing an international tournament in Liverpool any other week we would have been over the moon."
Ivanisevic pulls out of Masters with sore shoulder
13 March 2002
INDIAN WELLS, California (Reuters) - Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic's chronic shoulder problem flared up again on Tuesday and forced the 14th seed to withdraw from the Indian Wells Masters.
Ivanisevic, who also retired from his doubles match on Monday because of pain in his left shoulder, had been scheduled to play Germany's Rainer Schuettler in the opening round of the singles.
The left-hander's place in the draw will now be taken by Argentine "lucky loser" Mariano Zabaleta.
ATP trainer Doug Spreen attributed the Croat's injury to weakness and inflammation. Ivanisevic is to receive treatment in Los Angeles.
The injury, one he has suffered with repeatedly and which prompted him to consider retirement before his stunning win at Wimbledon last year, is not expected to prevent Ivanisevic from playing at next week's Masters Series event in Key Biscayne.
Mens Doubles Indian Wells
12 March 2002
S. Grosjean/N. Kiefer d. G. Ivanisevic/I. Ljubicic 5-2 ret
Thanks to Tango for the results :)
Goran wants to serve despite bad shoulder
10 March 2002
ZAGREB: Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic plans to play at an ATP event in Indian Wells, California, next week despite battling a shoulder injury and severe pain, Croatian newspapers reported Friday.
Doctors in Los Angeles, who were not identified, determined that much of the cartilage and muscle tissue in left-hander Ivanisevic's left shoulder was badly affected by more than a decade of professional tennis, the daily Sportske Novosti reported.
"It looks as if a bomb exploded" in Ivanisevic's shoulder, his father Srdjan was quoted as telling reporters by telephone.
But the left-handed Croat apparently has no immediate plans to retire as a professional player.
His shoulder should not cause any problems in his everyday life, and "when he quits tennis he will be able to holds to provide crucial points for Croatia in its Davis Cup tie against Argentina in Buenos Aires next month, and also plans to defend his title at Wimbledon
Liverpool Tournament Tickets
8 March 2002
As you know Goran is to warm up for the defence of his Wimbledon title at the new Liverpool International grass-court tournament.
For those wanting tickets for this event contact Liverpool City Council's Events Section as soon as possible
Phone number: 0151 233 6351
They are taking names and addresses.