LYNCHBURG, VA — James Blake defeated John McEnroe 6-3 Monday night in the one-set final at the Champions Showdown at Liberty University to win his third title this year on the PowerShares Series
The win keeps Blake alive in the year-long points title on the PowerShares Series, the North American tennis circuit for champion tennis players over the age of 30. By earning 400 rankings points with the tournament victory, Blake pulls with 100 points of top-ranked Andy Roddick heading into the final event of the 2017 PowerShares Series circuit next Sunday in Los Angeles. Blake prevented Roddick from clinching the year-long points title by defeating him 6-3 in the opening semifinal match Monday.
Earlier this year, Blake, the former world No. 4 and former U.S. Davis Cup star, won PowerShares Series titles in Charleston, S.C. and Winston-Salem, N.C. Roddick, the 2003 U.S. Open champion and world No. 1, also has won three PowerShares Series titles on the season, winning in Birmingham, Ala., Chicago and Lincoln, Neb. The two have split their four head-to-head meetings during the season.
McEnroe reached his fourth PowerShares Series final on the year but was not able to break through and beat Blake to win for the first time since 2014, when he won the season-long points title. The 58-year-old McEnroe, however, was able to outlast 1989 French Open champion Michael Chang 7-5 to advance to the final on Monday.
McEnroe’s 200 points for his runner-up finish moves him into fourth place in the PowerShares Series rankings with 900 points, 100 points shy of third-place Mardy Fish. Mark Philippoussis sits in fifth place with 800 points, while Chang is ranked No. 6 with 400 points and Jim Courier at No. 7 with 300 points. PowerShares Series counts each players best five results for the year.
Earlier on Monday morning, McEnroe, Roddick and Chang participated in Liberty University’s student convocation as seen here http://m1e.net/c?117624092-A9RsH4u6DABAY%40392086607-nu5ROvxKmam5I with McEnroe playing – and losing – a point to Pastor David Nasser as seen here http://m1e.net/c?117624092-cgkPCiMM3/jcI%40392086609-zDTZkXPgQvOGI
Each PowerShares Series event features two one-set semifinal matches and a one-set championship match and, for the third year, players make their own line calls with assistance of electronic line-calling.
The final PowerShares Series event in 2017 will be held Sunday the Sherwood Country Club in Thousand Oaks, Calif., with Roddick, Blake and Chang joining Fish. Event information can be found at www.PowerSharesSeries.com
In 2016, Mark Philippoussis won the PowerShares 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. James Blake finished in third place with 1100 points and tournament titles in Chicago, Portland and Brooklyn.
In 2015, Andy Roddick won the PowerShares 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. Mark 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 Champions Series tennis by winning events in Kansas City, Indianapolis, Nashville and Charlotte.
Results from the 2017 season are as follows:
March 30 – Toronto – F: Mark Philippoussis def. Andy Roddick 7-6(5); SF: Philippoussis def. John McEnroe 7-5, Roddick def. Mardy Fish 6-3
April 1 – Charleston, S.C. – F: James Blake def. Mark Philippoussis 7-6 (10-8); SF: Blake def. McEnroe 6-4, Philippoussis def. Roddick 6-4
April 28 – Birmingham, Ala. – F: Andy Roddick def. John McEnroe 6-4; SF: Roddick def. Mardy Fish 7-6(4), McEnroe def. Jim Courier 6-4
May 17 – Chicago – F: Andy Roddick def. John McEnroe 7-5; SF: Roddick def. Mark Philippoussis 7-6 (7), McEnroe def. Jim Courier 7-6(4)
July 23 – Newport, RI – F: Mardy Fish def. Andy Roddick 7-5; SF: Fish def. Courier 6-2, Roddick def. James Blake 6-2
August 20 – Winston-Salem, N.C. – F: James Blake def. Andy Roddick 6-4; SF: Blake def. Mardy Fish 6-3, Roddick def. Michael Chang 6-2
August 24-25 – New Haven, CT – F: Mardy Fish def. James Blake 6-4, SF: Fish def. Mark Philippoussis 6-4, Blake def. Michael Chang 7-5
October 6 – Lincoln, Neb. – F: Andy Roddick def. John McEnroe 6-3, SF: Andy Roddick def. James Blake 6-1, John McEnroe def. Michael Chang 6-2
October 16 – Lynchburg, Va. – F: James Blake def. John McEnroe 6-3, SF: James Blake def. Andy Roddick 6-3, John McEnroe def. Michael Chang 7-5