James Blake won his second Invesco Series QQQ title of the week Friday beating John McEnroe 6-4 in the one-set championship match at the Invesco Legends New Haven as part of the Connecticut Open WTA Tour event at Yale University.
Blake, a native of nearby Fairfield, Connecticut, was buoyed by support from the Connecticut crowd that included his mother Betty.
“It was a lot of fun,” said Blake. “When I come home here, things seem to come easier for me. It’s a lot of fun when I have crowd support. I know everyone loves John McEnroe. I love John McEnroe and I want to cheer for him too, but not when he is playing against me. Otherwise, I would cheer for John McEnroe. I still have a lot of fans here. It gives me a little bit of an adreline boast. I’m always competitive but especially here in Connecticut.”
On Sunday, Blake, 38, successfully defended his title at the Invesco Legends Winston Salem in North Carolina beating his good friend and former Davis Cup teammate Andy Roddick 6-1 in the final. Blake’s title in New Haven marked his 12th career title on the North American tennis circuit for champion tennis players over the age of 30. Blake also won the Invesco Series QQQ title in New Haven in 2016, also beating McEnroe by a 6-4 scoreline in the final. Last year, he was defeated in the New Haven final by Mardy Fish. During his career on the ATP World Tour, Blake won two of his career 10 titles in New Haven, winning in 2005 and in 2007.
Earlier in the night, McEnroe, age 59, advanced into the final with a 6-3 win over Todd Martin. Martin, the CEO of the International Tennis Hall of Fame in Newport, R.I., was competing in his first Invesco Series QQQ events since 2014 and played well, despite labeling himself as “desk jockey” devoting most of energies into his day job and no longer having the pleasure of wearing tennis shorts to work any longer. Blake advanced into the final on Thursday night when he defeated Tommy Haas 6-4.
Blake earned 400 Invesco Series QQQ ranking points to close within 100 points of Haas in the top-ranking spot. With his loss to Blake on Thursday, Haas earned 100 points to move to 1100 for the year while Blake’s 400 points move him to 1000 points. With his runner-up showing, McEnroe moves into third place with 600 points and is followed by Mark Philippoussis in fourth place with 500 points and Roddick and Lleyton Hewitt with 400 points in fifth place.
The Invesco Series QQQ continues on October 4 in St. Louis, Missouri featuring McEnroe, Roddick, Jim Courier and Mark Philippoussis. The remaining schedule, with player fields, is as follows
The remaining 2018 Invesco Series QQQ schedule is as follows:
• October 4: St. Louis, MO (Chaifetz Arena) – John McEnroe, Andy Roddick, Jim Courier, and Mark Philippoussis
• October 5: Houston, TX (Tudor Fieldhouse) – John McEnroe, Andy Roddick, James Blake, and Jim Courier
• October 21: Los Angeles, CA (Sherwood Country Club) – Andy Roddick, James Blake, Tommy Haas, and Mardy Fish
• December 6: Orlando, FL (USTA National Campus) – Jim Courier, Andy Roddick, James Blake and Mardy Fish
2018 Invesco Series QQQ Results
April 7: Charleston, SC (Family Circle Tennis Center) F: Tommy Haas def. Andy Roddick 6-1; SF: Tommy Haas def. Michael Chang 6-2; Andy Roddick def. Mark Philippoussis 6-3
May 5, 6: Kohala Coast, HI (Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows) F: Tommy Haas def. John McEnroe 7-5 SF: Tommy Haas def. Mardy Fish 6-3, John McEnroe def.Jim Courier 6-3
May 17: Toronto, ON (Ryerson’s Mattamy Athletic Centre) F: Mark Philippoussis d. John McEnroe 7-5, SF: Mark Philippoussis d. James Blake 7-6 (5); John McEnroe d. Jim Courier 6-2.
July 22: Newport, RI (International Tennis Hall of Fame) F: Lleyton Hewitt d. Tommy Haas 7-6(2) SF: Lleyton Hewitt d. James Blake 6-3; Tommy Haas d. Jim Courier 6-3
August 19: Winston-Salem, NC (Wake Forest University) F: James Blake d. Andy Roddick 6-1 SF: Andy Roddick d. Robby Ginepri 7-6 (4); James Blake d. Michael Chang 6-3
August 23/24: New Haven, CT (Yale University) F: James Blake d. John McEnroe 6-4 SF: John McEnroe d. Todd Martin 6-3, James Blake d. Tommy Haas 6-4
Each Invesco Series QQQ event features special VIP experiences, including hit-with-the-pros opportunities and special back-stage access. All ticket, experience and event information can be found at www.InvescoSeries.com
In 2017, the year-long points championship was decided in the final match of the season when Andy Roddick defeated James Blake in the Los Angeles final at the Sherwood Country Club. Roddick, the 2003 U.S. Open champion and world No. 1, won four Invesco Series QQQ titles in all in 2017, winning in Birmingham, Ala., Chicago, Lincoln, Neb., and Los Angeles. Blake, the former world No. 4 and former U.S. Davis Cup star, won series titles in Charleston, S.C., Winston-Salem, N.C. and in Lynchburg, Va.
In 2016, Mark Philippoussis won the Series points title with 1600 points and tournament titles in Memphis, Tulsa, Newport, Winston-Salem and New Haven. Roddick finished in second place, also earning 1600 points but losing the head-to-head tiebreaker with Philippoussis 5-2, while winning titles in Charleston, St. Louis, Los Angeles and Orlando. Blake finished in third place with 1100 points and tournament titles in
Chicago, Portland and Brooklyn.
In 2015, Roddick won the Series points title in his second year of competing on the series with 1,600 points. Roddick won a record eight events Los Angeles, Lincoln, Chicago, Austin, Little Rock, Dallas, Richmond and Minneapolis. Blake finished second in the points rankings with 1,200 points, winning events in Boston and Cincinnati. Philippoussis finished in third with 1,100 points, winning titles in Salt Lake City and Vancouver. The year before in 2014, McEnroe won the points title for the first time in the nine-year history of Invesco Series QQQ tennis by winning events in Kansas City, Indianapolis, Nashville and Charlotte.
ABOUT INSIDEOUT SPORTS + ENTERTAINMENT
InsideOut Sports + Entertainment is a Los Angeles based producer of proprietary events and promotions founded in 2004 by former world No. 1 and Hall of Fame tennis player Jim Courier and former SFX and Clear Channel executive Jon Venison. In 2005, InsideOut launched its signature property, the Champions Series, a collection of tournaments featuring the greatest names in tennis over the age of 30. In addition, InsideOut produces many other successful events including “Legendary Night” exhibitions, The World Series of Beach Volleyball and numerous corporate outings. Since inception, InsideOut Sports + Entertainment has raised over $4 million for charity. In 2014, InsideOut Sports + Entertainment merged with Horizon Media, the largest privately held media services agency in the world. For more information, please log on to www.InsideOutSE.com or InvescoSeries.comor follow on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
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