Open main menu

Nicolas Kiefer (German pronunciation: [ˈkiːfɐ];[1][2] born 5 July 1977), is a former German professional tennis player. He reached the semifinal of the 2006 Australian Open and won a silver medal in men's doubles with partner Rainer Schüttler at the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens. Kiefer's career-high singles ranking was world No. 4, achieved in January 2000.

Nicolas Kiefer
Nicolas Kiefer at the 2008 BNP Paribas Masters.jpg
Country (sports) Germany
ResidenceSievershausen, Germany
Born (1977-07-05) 5 July 1977 (age 42)
Holzminden, West Germany
Height1.83 m (6 ft 0 in)
Turned pro1995
Retired30 December 2010
PlaysRight-handed (two-handed backhand)
Prize moneyUS$ 7,480,465
Singles
Career record366–274
Career titles6
Highest rankingNo. 4 (10 January 2000)
Grand Slam Singles results
Australian OpenSF (2006)
French Open4R (2005)
WimbledonQF (1997)
US OpenQF (2000)
Other tournaments
Tour FinalsSF (1999)
Olympic Games3R (2004, 2008)
Doubles
Career record92–123
Career titles3
Highest rankingNo. 56 (17 February 2003)
Grand Slam Doubles results
Australian Open2R (2004)
French Open1R (2001, 2003, 2004)
Wimbledon2R (2003)
US Open1R (2002)

Tennis careerEdit

1995–2005Edit

Kiefer was taken notice of as an outstanding junior. He won the Junior Australian Open, the US Open, and was a finalist and semifinalist at Wimbledon and the French Open finishing as the No. 2 junior behind Mariano Zabaleta when he was 18 in 1995. On 10 January 2000, he reached his second quarterfinal at the Australian Open and afterwards was ranked world No. 4, his highest position.

Kiefer was known to have some tennis superstitions. He was sometimes seen tapping his racquet on the corners of the court after a point,[3] and, when serving, frequently asked for the ball with which he had just won a point to re-use it for the next one.

2006–2007Edit

Kiefer became infamous for an incident on 25 January 2006, during the quarterfinals of the Australian Open. While facing Sébastien Grosjean late in the fifth set of a marathon match, Kiefer threw his racquet midpoint. Grosjean lost the point, hitting the ball into the net. Grosjean protested that the racquet distracted his shot. The umpire Carlos Bernardes said he did not believe the act was intentional and noted Grosjean had already hit the ball before the flying racquet could have had any effect on his shot. Grosjean eventually lost the fifth and final set to Kiefer. Kiefer went through to the semi-finals where he was defeated by the 2004 champion Roger Federer.

Kiefer injured his wrist while playing at the 2006 French Open, and announced his return on 5 July 2007, having fallen to the 404th position on ATP. He announced that he was "tired of waiting and anxious to start traveling again and to see his name on scoreboards". Kiefer returned at the 2007 Gerry Weber Open, losing in the first round to eventual champion Tomáš Berdych. At Wimbledon, he made the third round after defeating No.30 seed Filippo Volandri and Fabrice Santoro, both in straight sets, before losing in 4 sets (3 of which were tiebreakers) to Novak Djoković. At Newport, however, he ended up losing in round 1. At Los Angeles, he reached the semifinals in only his 4th tournament since coming back from injury; he had to default against Radek Štěpánek, another player coming back from injury, because of an injury sustained during his quarter-final win. He also made an impressive showing at the 2007 Madrid Masters, where he beat number five seed Fernando González in the quarterfinals before losing in the semifinals to world number one Roger Federer 6–4, 6–4.

2008Edit

His 2008 season did not start out well: he lost in the first round of the Australian Open to former world No.1 Juan Carlos Ferrero, first round of 2008 Indian Wells Masters to Dudi Sela, third round of 2008 Miami Masters to world No.2 Rafael Nadal, second round of 2008 Monte Carlo Masters to Philipp Kohlschreiber, first round of 2008 Rome Masters to Ferrero. His first notable result was the quarterfinals of the 2008 Hamburg Masters with victories over world No.10 Stanislas Wawrinka and world No.4 Nikolay Davydenko before losing to Andreas Seppi in three sets. He would lose in the third round of 2008 Wimbledon Championships to Nadal. During the 2008 Canada Masters, at age 31 and ranked No. 37, he made his first Masters final after 73 previous tries, previously finishing as a semifinalist at the 1999 and 2004 Canada Masters (lost to Thomas Johansson and Andy Roddick respectively) and 2007 Madrid Masters (lost to Federer). Along the way, he defeated Mardy Fish, 15th seed Mikhail Youzhny, fourth seed Nikolay Davydenko, seventh seed James Blake, and Gilles Simon; the win over Simon was especially notable because Simon had defeated world No. 1 Roger Federer in the second round. He lost to Nadal in the final in straight sets. Because of his run, he broke back into the top 20 at No. 19.

2009Edit

In 2009, he represented Germany in the 2009 Hopman Cup with 19-year-old Sabine Lisicki. In the first match, he lost against Australia's Lleyton Hewitt, who had been six months inactive due to an injury. In the second singles match, Kiefer lost again, this time to USA's James Blake. Nevertheless, Kiefer won both of the doubles matches with Sabine Lisicki against both Australia and the United States. In the third singles match, Kiefer twisted his ankle against Slovakia's Dominik Hrbatý in the first set when Kiefer was up 3–1 and serving. This injury prevented him from participating in the 2009 Australian Open.

He re-appeared in the 2009 Davis Cup match against Austria in which he won in the doubles match with Philipp Kohlschreiber against Julian Knowle and Alexander Peya in four sets. Kiefer also played a singles match, the fourth match, against Jürgen Melzer in which Kiefer won in straight sets and gave Germany the victory against Austria. Kiefer then participated in the 2009 BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells in which he beat Bobby Reynolds in straight sets in the second round, but he then lost in the third round to Andy Roddick.

 
Kiefer at the 2009 French Open

In the 2009 Sony Ericsson Open in Miami, Kiefer beat "the magician" Fabrice Santoro in the second round. In the third round Kiefer was defeated by world No. 2 Roger Federer. At the 2009 Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters, Kiefer lost in his first match against qualifier Andreas Beck. At the 2009 Internazionali BNL d'Italia in Rome, Kiefer lost again in his first match against Juan Mónaco in straight sets. In the 2009 BMW Open Kiefer was down against Ernests Gulbis 2–6, 0–2 but eventually won in three sets. Kiefer said after the match, "Clay and me, we will never be the best of friends". Kiefer suffered from back problems which eventually made him lose against Jérémy Chardy in the next round.

At the 2009 Mutua Madrileña Madrid Open he lost against Tommy Robredo. Kiefer then played the 2009 ARAG World Team Cup, in which he played the doubles matches with Mischa Zverev. They won all of their matches, and Germany reached the final, but lost against Serbia. Despite Germany losing, Kiefer won the doubles match in the final against Viktor Troicki and doubles world No. 1 Nenad Zimonjić.

Kiefer then participated at the 2009 French Open in which he beat qualifier Ilija Bozoljac in four sets. However, Kiefer lost in the second round against world No. 14 David Ferrer in five sets. Despite this loss, Kiefer claimed that he was proud that he had played up to a fifth set against one of the best tennis players of the world on clay, since clay is Kiefer's least favourite surface. The clay season had now ended, and the grass season started with Kiefer's participation in his favourite tournament, the 2009 Gerry Weber Open. In the first match, he thrashed Viktor Troicki, but retired in the second round against Jürgen Melzer when he was down 1–6 with a muscular strain in his abdomen which forced him to retire from singles and doubles, where he had reached the semifinals with Mischa Zverev.

Kiefer participated in the Wimbledon as the 33rd seed but having not fully recovered from his abdomen injury. This was reflected in his match against Fabrice Santoro, where Kiefer lost in straight sets. Kiefer then played for Germany in the 2009 Davis Cup quarterfinals against Spain. He did so in the doubles match with Mischa Zverev against Spain's Fernando Verdasco and Feliciano López. Kiefer and Zverev lost the match. In the first round of the U.S Open, he beat Michaël Llodra in straight sets, but in the second round he lost to world No. 3 Rafael Nadal.

Major finalsEdit

Olympic finalsEdit

Doubles: 1 (1 silver medal)Edit

Outcome Year Championship Surface Partner Opponents Score
Silver 2004 Athens Olympics Hard   Rainer Schüttler   Fernando González
  Nicolás Massú
2–6, 6–4, 6–3, 6–7(7–9), 4–6

Masters Series finalsEdit

Singles: 1 (0 titles, 1 runner-up)Edit

Outcome Year Championship Surface Opponent Score
Runner-up 2008 Toronto (Canada) Hard   Rafael Nadal 3–6, 2–6

Career finalsEdit

Singles (19)Edit

Wins (6)Edit

Legend
Grand Slam (0)
Tennis Masters Cup (0)
ATP Masters Series (0)
ATP International Series Gold (1)
ATP Tour (5)
Outcome No. Date Tournament Surface Opponent Score
Winner 1. 22 September 1997 Toulouse, France Hard (i)   Mark Philippoussis 7–5, 5–7, 6–4
Winner 2. 12 April 1999 Tokyo, Japan Hard   Wayne Ferreira 7–6(7–5), 7–5
Winner 3. 7 June 1999 Halle, Germany Grass   Nicklas Kulti 6–3, 6–2
Winner 4. 13 September 1999 Tashkent, Uzbekistan Hard   George Bastl 6–4, 6–2
Winner 5. 7 February 2000 Dubai, United Arab Emirates Hard   Juan Carlos Ferrero 7–5, 4–6, 6–3
Winner 6. 2 October 2000 Hong Kong, China Hard   Mark Philippoussis 7–6(7–4), 2–6, 6–2

Runners-up (13)Edit

Legend
Grand Slam (0)
Tennis Masters Cup (0)
ATP Masters Series (1)
ATP International Series Gold (3)
ATP Tour (9)
Outcome No. Date Tournament Surface Opponent Score
Runner-up 1. 13 October 1997 Singapore, Singapore Carpet   Magnus Gustafsson 6–4, 3–6, 3–6
Runner-up 2. 15 February 1999 Dubai, United Arab Emirates Hard   Jérôme Golmard 4–6, 2–6
Runner-up 3. 19 October 1999 Vienna, Austria Carpet   Greg Rusedski 7–6(7–5), 6–2, 3–6, 5–7, 4–6
Runner-up 4. 8 October 2001 Moscow, Russia (1) Carpet (i)   Yevgeny Kafelnikov 4–6, 5–7
Runner-up 5. 17 June 2002 Halle, Germany (1) Grass   Yevgeny Kafelnikov 6–2, 4–6, 4–6
Runner-up 6. 16 June 2003 Halle, Germany (2) Grass   Roger Federer 1–6, 3–6
Runner-up 7. 16 February 2004 Memphis, United States Hard   Joachim Johansson 6–7(5–7), 3–6
Runner-up 8. 1 March 2004 Scottsdale, United States Hard   Vince Spadea 5–7, 7–6(7–5), 3–6
Runner-up 9. 19 July 2004 Indianapolis, United States Hard   Andy Roddick 2–6, 3–6
Runner-up 10. 12 July 2004 Los Angeles, United States Hard   Tommy Haas 6–7(6–8), 4–6
Runner-up 11. 10 October 2005 Moscow, Russia (2) Carpet (i)   Igor Andreev 7–5, 6–7(3–7), 2–6
Runner-up 12. 24 October 2005 St. Petersburg, Russia Carpet (i)   Thomas Johansson 4–6, 2–6
Runner-up 13. 27 July 2008 Toronto, Canada Hard   Rafael Nadal 3–6, 2–6

Doubles (5)Edit

Wins (4)Edit

Legend
Grand Slam (0)
Olympics Gold (0)
Tennis Masters Cup (0)
ATP Masters Series (0)
ATP International Series Gold (1)
ATP Tour (3)
Futures (1)
No. Date Tournament Surface Partner Opponent in the final Score in the final
1. 19 October 1998 Ostrava, Czech Republic Carpet   David Prinosil   David Adams
  Pavel Vízner
6–4, 6–3
2. 22 July 2002 Los Angeles, United States Hard   Sébastien Grosjean   Justin Gimelstob
  Michaël Llodra
6–4, 6–4
3. 29 September 2003 Tokyo, Japan Hard   Justin Gimelstob   Mark Merklein
  Scott Humphries
6–7(6–8), 6–3, 7–6(7–4)
4. 11 October 2010 Hambach, Germany Hard   Stefan Seifert   Roman Jebavý
  Daniel Lustig
3–6, 6–2, [10–7]

Runners-up (1)Edit

Legend
Grand Slam (0)
Olympics Silver (1)
Tennis Masters Cup (0)
ATP Masters Series (0)
ATP International Series Gold (0)
ATP Tour (0)
No. Date Tournament Surface Partner Opponent in the final Score in the final
1. 21 August 2004 Summer Olympics, Athens, Greece Hard   Rainer Schüttler   Fernando González
  Nicolás Massú
2–6, 6–4, 6–3, 6–7(7–9), 4–6

Performance timelineEdit

SinglesEdit

Tournament 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 SR W–L
Grand Slam tournaments
Australian Open A 1R A QF 3R QF 2R 1R A 1R 1R SF A 1R A A 0 / 10 16–10
French Open A Q1 1R 2R 1R 1R 1R 1R 2R 2R 4R 3R A A 2R A 0 / 11 9–10
Wimbledon Q2 A QF 3R 2R 1R 4R 3R 1R 1R 3R A 3R 3R 1R 1R 0 / 13 18–13
US Open A A A 3R 3R QF 1R 1R 2R 4R 4R A 2R 1R 2R A 0 / 11 17–11
Win–Loss 0–0 0–1 4–2 9–4 5–4 8–4 4–4 2–4 2–3 4–4 8–3 7–2 3–2 2–3 2–3 0–1 0 / 45 60–44
Year-end championship
Tennis Masters Cup Did Not Qualify SF Did Not Qualify 0 / 1 2–2
ATP Masters Series
Indian Wells Masters A A A 3R 3R 1R 3R 2R 2R 1R QF 2R A 1R 3R A 0 / 11 12–11
Miami Masters A A 2R 3R QF 2R 2R 1R 1R QF 2R 4R A 3R 3R A 0 / 12 16–12
Monte Carlo Masters A A A 2R A A 1R 1R A 2R 2R 3R A 2R 1R A 0 / 8 6–8
Rome Masters A A Q1 A 3R A 3R 1R A 1R 2R 2R A 1R 1R A 0 / 8 6–8
Hamburg Masters Q2 1R 2R 1R A A 3R 1R 1R 1R 2R 2R A QF NMS 0 / 10 8–10
Canada Masters A A A 3R SF 2R 2R 1R A SF 3R A 2R F 1R A 0 / 10 20–10
Cincinnati Masters A A A 1R 3R 1R 3R 2R A 2R 2R A 2R A 1R A 0 / 9 8–9
Stuttgart (Essen) Masters 1R 2R QF 2R 2R A 1R Discontinued 0 / 6 5–6
Madrid Masters Not Held A A A 1R A SF 1R 1R Q1 0 / 4 4–4
Paris Masters A A A 2R A A 1R A A A 1R A 1R 2R A A 0 / 5 2–5
Win–Loss 0–1 1–2 5–3 9–8 13–6 1–4 10–9 2–7 1–3 10–7 9–9 6–5 6–4 12–8 2–7 0–0 0 / 83 87–83
National representation
Olympic Games NH A Not Held 1R Not Held 3R Not Held 3R NH 0 / 3 5–3
Davis Cup A A A QF 1R A QF 1R PO PO PO 1R A QF QF A 0 / 7 10–11
Career statistics
Titles 0 0 1 0 3 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 6
Finals 0 0 2 0 5 2 1 1 1 4 2 0 0 1 0 0 19
Year-end ranking 206 128 32 35 6 20 42 72 58 21 22 48 49 38 116 722

Top 10 winsEdit

Season 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 Total
Wins 0 0 3 3 10 2 2 3 0 2 4 1 1 4 0 0 35
# Player Rank Event Surface Rd Score KR
1997
1.   Yevgeny Kafelnikov 6 Wimbledon, London, United Kingdom Grass 4R 6–2, 7–5, 2–6, 6–1 98
2.   Marcelo Ríos 8 Singapore, Singapore Carpet (i) QF 6–1, 7–5 48
3.   Greg Rusedski 5 Stuttgart, Germany Carpet (i) 2R 5–7, 6–2, 6–4 34
1998
4.   Jonas Björkman 7 Miami, United States Hard 3R 7–6(8–6), 7–6(7–3) 27
5.   Petr Korda 2 World Team Cup, Düsseldorf, Germany Clay F 7–5, 6–3 24
6.   Petr Korda 5 Basel, Switzerland Hard (i) 1R 6–2, 6–4 28
1999
7.   Carlos Moyá 5 Australian Open, Melbourne, Australia Hard 1R 6–7(7–9), 6–4, 7–6(8–6), 6–3 37
8.   Pat Rafter 5 Indian Wells, United States Hard 2R 7–6(7–2), 3–6, 7–5 33
9.   Pat Rafter 5 Miami, United States Hard 3R 7–6(7–5), 6–4 30
10.   Richard Krajicek 5 Rome, Italy Clay 2R 6–3, 6–2 23
11.   Pat Rafter 2 Montreal, Canada Hard QF 6–3, 6–7(5–7), 7–6(7–4) 17
12.   Greg Rusedski 8 Basel, Switzerland Carpet (i) QF 2–6, 7–6(7–4), 6–3 12
13.   Yevgeny Kafelnikov 2 Vienna, Austria Hard (i) QF 6–0, 6–4 11
14.   Richard Krajicek 8 Vienna, Austria Hard (i) SF 7–6(11–9), 6–4 11
15.   Todd Martin 7 ATP Tour World Championships, Hanover, Germany Hard (i) RR 6–3, 6–2 6
16.   Yevgeny Kafelnikov 2 ATP Tour World Championships, Hanover, Germany Hard (i) RR 6–1, 4–6, 6–2 6
2000
17.   Magnus Norman 3 US Open, New York, United States Hard 4R 6–2, 6–7(3–7), 6–1, 6–3 14
18.   Tim Henman 10 Hong Kong, Hong Kong Hard SF 6–4, 6–2 13
2001
19.   Yevgeny Kafelnikov 6 Rotterdam, Netherlands Hard (i) 2R 6–4, 6–2 55
20.   Pat Rafter 8 World Team Cup, Düsseldorf, Germany Clay RR 1–6, 6–2, 6–4 28
2002
21.   Yevgeny Kafelnikov 4 Munich, Germany Clay 1R 6–4, 6–7(7–9), 6–3 47
22.   Marat Safin 2 World Team Cup, Düsseldorf, Germany Clay RR 6–4, 2–6, 7–6(7–5) 63
23.   Roger Federer 10 Halle, Germany Grass SF 4–6, 6–4, 6–4 66
2004
24.   Rainer Schüttler 7 Miami, United States Hard 2R 6–4, 4–6, 7–6(7–3) 44
25.   Carlos Moyá 5 Toronto, Canada Hard 3R 6–4, 2–6, 6–4 25
2005
26.   Marat Safin 4 Dubai, United Arab Emirates Hard 1R 7–6(7–2), 6–4 30
27.   Gastón Gaudio 8 Indian Wells, United States Hard 3R 6–3, 6–1 31
28.   David Nalbandian 10 Indian Wells, United States Hard 4R 6–1, 6–3 31
29.   Nikolay Davydenko 8 St. Petersburg, Russia Carpet (i) QF 6–1, 6–1 29
2006
30.   Gastón Gaudio 10 World Team Cup, Düsseldorf, Germany Clay RR 6–2, 6–3 13
2007
31.   Fernando González 6 Madrid, Spain Hard (i) QF 7–6(7–5), 6–2 112
2008
32.   Stan Wawrinka 10 Hamburg, Germany Clay 2R 7–5, 7–5 41
33.   Nikolay Davydenko 4 Hamburg, Germany Clay 3R 7–5, 6–3 41
34.   Nikolay Davydenko 4 Toronto, Canada Hard 3R 4–6, 6–4, 6–4 37
35.   James Blake 8 Toronto, Canada Hard QF 6–1, 6–2 37

Record against No. 1 playersEdit

Kiefer's match record against players who have been ranked world No. 1.

Player Years Matches Record Win % Hard Clay Grass Carpet
  Patrick Rafter 1999–2001 5 4–1 80% 3–1 1–0 0–0 0–0
  Carlos Moyá 1998–2004 5 3–2 60% 2–1 1–1 0–0 0–0
  Marat Safin 1999–2007 7 4–3 57% 3–2 1–0 0–0 0–1
  Thomas Muster 1998 2 1–1 50% 1–0 0–1 0–0 0–0
  Marcelo Rios 1997–1998 2 1–1 50% 0–1 0–0 0–0 1–0
  Yevgeny Kafelnikov 1997–2003 15 6–9 40% 4–4 1–0 1–2 0–3
  Juan Carlos Ferrero 2000–2008 5 2–3 40% 2–1 0–1 0–0 0–1
  Gustavo Kuerten 1998–2002 3 1–2 33% 1–1 0–1 0–0 0–0
  Pete Sampras 1998–2002 4 1–3 25% 0–3 0–0 1–0 0–0
  Roger Federer 2000–2009 15 3–12 20% 1–8 0–1 1–3 1–0
  Jim Courier 1996 1 0–1 0% 0–0 0–0 0–1 0–0
  Boris Becker 1997–1999 2 0–2 0% 0–0 0–1 0–1 0–0
  Novak Djokovic 2007 2 0–2 0% 0–1 0–0 0–1 0–0
  Lleyton Hewitt 1999–2003 3 0–3 0% 0–3 0–0 0–0 0–0
  Rafael Nadal 2008–2009 5 0–5 0% 0–4 0–0 0–1 0–0
  Andy Roddick 2002–2009 5 0–5 0% 0–5 0–0 0–0 0–0
  Andre Agassi 1998–2005 6 0–6 0% 0–4 0–1 0–1 0–0

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Dudenredaktion; Kleiner, Stefan; Knöbl, Ralf (2015) [First published 1962]. Das Aussprachewörterbuch [The Pronunciation Dictionary] (in German) (7th ed.). Berlin: Dudenverlag. p. 506. ISBN 978-3-411-04067-4.
  2. ^ Krech, Eva-Maria; Stock, Eberhard; Hirschfeld, Ursula; Anders, Lutz Christian (2009). Deutsches Aussprachewörterbuch [German Pronunciation Dictionary] (in German). Berlin: Walter de Gruyter. p. 648. ISBN 978-3-11-018202-6.
  3. ^ "Strange Habits of Highly Successful Tennis Players" by Christopher Clarey, 21 June 2008 in The New York Times.

External linksEdit