Monday, March 10, 2008

Wk.10- A Tree Falls in India

If they held a tennis tournament on "the other side of the world" while many of the rest of the people on the planet were sleeping did it really happen?

For Bangalore champion Serena Williams, of course it did... not that too many people seemed to notice.


Even what was arguably the most competitive Williams-Williams match in a series that has mostly been known for the lackluster performances of the two sisters when on opposite sides of the net wasn't enough to make the WTA's Bangalore event a "big deal." Far more attention will surely be showered on the exhibition match between Roger Federer and Pete Sampras tonight at Madison Square Garden.

As in real estate, it's all about location, location, location.

Yet, somehow... it wasn't far enough away to prevent Jelena Jankovic from showing up. Imagine that.

She just loves her frequent flier miles, doesn't she?


S: Serena Williams def. Patty Schnyder 7-5/6-3
D: Peng/Sun d. Chan/Chaung

PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Serena Williams
at the very least, a springtime surge from Serena could be very good news for the US Fed Cup team, with the SF coming up at the end of next month (before she -- and Venus, for that matter -- will have been stretched to the limit by Roland Garros and Wimbledon). Career title #29 came in Bangalore, but it was her first since overcoming two match points to knock off Henin in Miami nearly a year ago.

Yan qualified in Bangalore singles. After she and Zheng Jie were dumped out of the doubles in the early going, she used her extra time to upset the likes of Maria Kirilenko and Jelena Jankovic to reach the SF.
SURPRISE: Peng Shuai/Sun Tiantian & Akgul Amanmuradova
the all-Cookie team of Peng/Sun won the Bangalore doubles, knocking off both Williams/Williams and Chan/Chuang along the way. It's Sun's second doubles title of the year to go along with her Oz Mixed Doubles trophy with Nenad Zimonjic. Amanmuradova occasionally jumps up to have a very nice week. Last week was one of those. She lost in the Bangalore QF to eventual RU Patty Schnyder, but only after she'd eliminated defending champ Yaroslava Shvedova and Agnes Szavay (and teamed with Olga Savchuk in the doubles upset of Yan/Zheng).
VETERANS: Patty Schnyder & Venus Williams
Venus rebounded well from her recent disappointments, getting wins over Peng and Vera Zvonareva. But then she met her sister in the SF, and lost a 3rd set tie-break. It's a good start to a better spring/summer, though. Schnyder's path to the Bangalore final wasn't as littered with top seeds as one might expect thanks to her fortunate draw, but wins over Nakamura, Amanmuradova and Yan are fine and good if it means a place in the final. Unfortunately for Sneaky, her title drought since Cincinnati '05 continues.
FRESH FACES: Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova & Asia Muhammad

slowly but surely, 16-year old Hordette Pavlyuchenkova is making progress. She won the $25K challenger in Minsk with a dominating 6-0/6-1 win in the final over Nikola Frankova. She defeated top-seeded fellow Russian Anna Lapushchenkova in the SF. Vegas native Muhammad, the 16-year old with the Agassi/Graf ties, reached the $50K Las Vegas final after putting together a string of impressive wins over Brengle, Bychkova, Malek and Czink.
DOWN: Jelena Jankovic
Jelena keeps going, but the returns are beginning to slightly diminish. She's reached three straight QF since reaching the Australian Open SF, which speaks to a nice consistency to her madness. But after being put out by Yan in Bangalore, where she was the #1-seed, it's fairly certain that a week off would have done her far more good than a trip to India.
ITF PLAYER: Camille Pin
the Pastry defeated Muhammad in the Las Vegas final, lining up the win over the American next to ones over Yuan, Goerges and Ani.

1. Bang SF - S.Williams d. V.Williams
How times have changed, considering these Venus vs. Serena meetings used to be groundbreaking moments on the tennis calendar. Yet the first such match in 30 months, largely because of where it took place, barely seemed to register at all on the American sports landscape on what was already a pretty slow weekend. For what it's worth, this might have been the most competitive of the fifteen matches between the sisters, and was the first to go to a 3rd set tie-break.
2. Bang F - S.Williams d. Schnyder
If this match had taken place on a hockey rink, would Patty have been given an "assist" in Serena's win? A case could surely be made for it. Of course, if this one had taken place on the ice it'd surely be the NUMBER ONE match of the week, huh?
3. Bang Doub 2nd - Peng/Sun d. Williams/Williams
A rare in-season, non-slam appearance from the sisterly doubles team.
4. Bang QF - Yan d. Jankovic
And, yes, Jankovic is in the draw for Indian Wells, too.
5t. Las Vegas $50K Q3 - Karatantcheva d. Bovina
It's just nice to see Bovina's name on the scoreboard. And in a competitive match, too.
5t. Las Vegas $50K 1st - Brengle d. Karatantcheva
Sesil was granted a wild card into the Indian Wells qualifying, so this week she COULD play her first main draw tour match since her suspension.
HM- Bang 2nd - Amanmuradova d.. Szavay
Szavay was up a set and a break here, but even with another early loss her ranking rose to #17. With few results to defend between now and the North American hard court season, just marginal progress over the next few months will likely get her a Top 16 seed at the European slams this summer.

[Serena leads 8-7; 1 walkover]
98 Aust.Open 2nd - Venus 7-6,6-1
98 Rome QF - Venus 6-4,6-2
99 Miami F - Venus 6-1,4-6,6-4
99 Grand Slam Cup F - Serena 6-1,3-6,6-4
00 Wimbledon SF - Venus 6-2,7-6
01 Ind.Wells SF - Serena walkover
01 US Open F - Venus 6-2,6-4
02 Miami SF - Serena 6-2,6-2
02 R.Garros F - Serena 7-5,6-3
02 Wimbledon F - Serena 7-6,6-3
02 US Open F - Serena 6-3,6-4
03 Aust.Open F - Serena 7-6,3-6,6-4
03 Wimbledon F - Serena 4-6,6-4,6-2

05 Miami QF - Venus 6-1,7-6
05 US Open 4th - Venus 7-6,6-2

08 BANGALORE SF - SERENA 6-3,3-6,7-6

2...Cara Black, ZIM [2/0]
2...Alona Bondarenko, UKR [2/0]
2...Kateryna Bondarenko, UKR [2/0]
2...Liezel Huber, USA [2/0]
2...Sun Tiantian, CHN [1/1]

[most recent]
55...Lindsay Davenport, USA [08: 2]
41...Justine Henin, BEL [08: 2]
36...Venus Williams, USA [07]
24...Amelie Mauresmo, FRA [07]
18...Maria Sharapova, RUS [08: 2]
18...Mary Pierce, FRA [05]
10...Anastasia Myskina, RUS [05]
10...Patty Schnyder, SUI [05]

07 FINAL: Hantuchova d. Kuznetsova
08 TOP: Ivanovic/Kuznetsova

=4th Round=
Ivanovic d. Schiavone
Paszek d. Zvonareva
Jankovic d. Razzano
Davenport d. Bartoli
Hantuchova d. Peer
Sharapova d. Mauresmo
A.Radwanska d. Safarova
Kuznetsova d. Li

Ivanovic d. Paszek
Davenport d. Jankovic
Sharapova d. Hantuchova
Kuznetsova d. A.Radwanska

Davenport d. Ivanovic
Sharapova d. Kuznetsova

Sharapova d. Davenport

=4th Round=
Ivanovic d. Pennetta
Vaidisova d. Zvonareva
Jankovic d. Pivovarova
Davenport d. Bartoli
Hantuchova d. Peer
Sharapova d. Mauresmo
A.Radwanska d. Safina
Kuznetsova d. Li

Ivanovic d. Vaidisova
Davenport d. Jankovic
Sharapova d. Hantuchova
A.Radwanska d. Kuznetsova

Ivanovic d. Davenport
Sharapova d. A.Radwanska

Sharapova d. Ivanovic

All for now.


Blogger Diane said...

I noticed. That's because I was in cringe position, waiting for Patty to blow the final.

Tue Mar 18, 12:24:00 AM EDT  

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