TORONTO – James Blake defeated Robby Ginepri 6-4 to win the RPIA Championships, the eighth of ten events on the 2019 Invesco Series QQQ, held Thursday at the Mattamy Athletic Centre at Ryerson University.
The win was the third tournament title this year for Blake on the North American tennis circuit for champion tennis players over the age of 30 and his 16th career title since joining the circuit in 2014. The win also allowed Blake to once again leap-frog former world No. 2 Tommy Haas into first place in the season-long Invesco Series QQQ points standings. Blake earned 400 points for his tournament win Thursday to give him 1300 points for the year, 100 more than Haas with 1200 points. Haas, like Blake, also has won three tournament titles in 2019, but Blake has played five events so far this year against only three for Haas and only a player’s best four results for the year count for the Invesco Series rankings. Both Blake and Haas will each play in one more event the rest of this season – Blake in Houston in November and Haas in Los Angeles in October. Earlier this year, Blake, the former world No. 4, won titles in Tampa and San Jose, California while Haas won titles in Newport Beach, Calif., Maui, Hawaii and New Haven, Connecticut. Haas does have a head-to-head win over Blake in the semifinals of New Haven by a 6-2 scoreline, that could prove significant as a tiebreaker if there is a tie in points between Blake and Haas after the next two events.
In 2018, Blake won three events to fend off Haas and win the season-long points title for the first time. In 2017, he lost to Andy Roddick in the final match of the season in Los Angeles to be edged by his former U.S. Davis Cup teammate for the points title.
Ginepri was making his second career Invesco Series appearance after playing in 2018 in Winston-Salem, N.C., where he lost to Roddick 7-6(4) in the semifinals. The 2005 U.S. Open semifinalist was a late substitute in the field replacing defending champion Mark Philippoussis, who was forced to withdraw due an injured right shoulder.
To advance into the final, Blake defeated former world No. 1 Jim Courier 6-3 in the first semifinal, while Ginepri defeated Roddick 6-4. The win over Roddick was Ginepri’s first career Invesco Series QQQ match win.
The remaining 2019 Invesco Series QQQ schedule is as follows:
Los Angeles, CA – October 26 (Sherwood Country Club) Andy Roddick, Jim Courier, Tommy Haas, Mardy Fish
Houston, TX – November 14: (Rice University) Andy Roddick, James Blake, Tommy Haas, Juan Carlos Ferrero
Results from earlier this year are as follows:
January 26 – Newport Beach, CA (Newport Beach Tennis Club) F: Tommy Haas def. Andy Roddick 7-6(2); SF: Tommy Haas def. Mardy Fish 6-3, Andy Roddick def. James Blake 6-3
April 4 – Tampa, FL (Innisbrook Resort) F: James Blake def. Jim Courier 6-3; SF: James Blake def. Mardy Fish 6-3, Jim Courier def. John McEnroe 7-6(4)
April 6 – Charleston, SC (Volvo Car Stadium) F: Lleyton Hewitt def. Andy Roddick 6-2; SF: Lleyton Hewitt def. Mats Wilander 6-3, Andy Roddick def. Jim Courier 6-4
May 4-5 – Maui, HI (Royal Lahaina Resort) F: Tommy Haas def. Mardy Fish 6-4; SF: Tommy Haas def. Mark Philippoussis 6-2, Mardy Fish def. Michael Chang 6-3
July 21 – Newport, RI (International Tennis Hall of Fame) F: Todd Martin def. Mats Wilander 6-2 SF: Todd Martin def. Yevgeny Kafelnikov 6-4, Mats Wilander def. Jim Courier 6-2
August 3 – San Jose, CA (San Jose State University) F: James Blake def. Mark Philippoussis 7-6(4); SF: James Blake def. Michael Chang 6-2, Mark Philippoussis def. Andy Roddick 7-6(4)
September 7 – New Haven, CT (Yale University) F: Tommy Haas def. Mark Philippoussis 6-4; SF Mark Philippoussis def. Andy Roddick 6-4, Tommy Haas def. James Blake 6-2.
September 26 – Toronto, ON (Mattamy Athletic Centre): F: James Blake def. Robby Ginepri 6-4; SF: James Blake def. Jim Courier 6-3, Robby Ginepri def. Andy Roddick 6-4.
In 2018, Blake won his first Invesco Series QQQ year-long points championship by winning titles in Winston-Salem, New Haven and Houston, while also finishing as runner-up in Los Angeles and Orlando.
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.
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