Saturday, February 03, 2007

Wk.5- The Statement

A joint statement from Backspin and Tennisrulz...

"After the unfortunate hamstring injury incurred by Maria Sharapova during her semifinal match in Tokyo, as well as her difficulties in Hong Kong, and her struggles with her serve and the heat in Melbourne, it has been brought to the attention of Pierre Cantin and myself, Todd Spiker, that we may have something to do with this.

We steadfastly refute that assertion. Our talk of a 'Curse' being placed on Sharapova several weeks ago in a 'Backspin Volley' column on WTA Backspin was simply a topic of conversation referred to in jest, and in no way was a concerted effort to identify Miss Sharapova as an intended or implied victim or target of any dark magic or paranormal-related activity.

I, as well as Pierre, surely wish Miss Sharapova success and health for the remainder of her 2007 season and beyond. Any future talk of a 'Curse' will be made with tongue firmly planted in cheek, and with the utmost respect for the talent and future endeavors of Miss Sharapova in the forefront of our minds.

Any further assertions shall be directed to our legal representatives."


Thank you very much for your time.*


S: Martina Hingis d. Ana Ivanovic 6-4/6-2
D: Raymond/Stosur d. King/Stubbs

PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Martina Hingis

the Swiss Soon-to-be-Mrs. won her fifth career Tokyo title (1997,99,00,02) by doing a pretty fair impersonation of the Swiss Mister. In other words, ala Federer in Melbourne, she didn't drop a set en route to her 43rd career title.
RISER: Ana Ivanovic
AnaIvo reached her first final since her Tier I win in Montreal before the U.S. Open. She got an impressive win over Jelena Jankovic in the QF, and saw Maria Sharapova retire in the SF. But after a good start, she was thoroughly outclassed by Hingis in the final.
SURPRISE: Roberta Vinci
the Noodle reached the Tokyo QF with wins over Daniela Hantuchova and Severine Bremond.
VETERANS: Martina Hingis & Ai Sugiyama
Hingis, after losing in the Tokyo final a year ago, did one better this time around. Meanwhile, Sugiyama knocked off two Russians (Elena Vesnina & Maria Kirilenko) and pushed a third (Sharapova) to three sets in the QF.
FRESH FACE: Caroline Wozniacki

the Danish 16-year old won her second career ITF singles title, winning the $75K in Ortesi with a 4-6/7-5/6-3 win over Alberta Brianti in the final.
DOWN: Maria Sharapova
after being pushed to three sets twice, she finally ended up retiring in the Tokyo SF against Ivanovic with a hamstring injury. Could this be the early stages of the C-c-c-... no, I'm not going to say it. This is still the Supernova we're talking about, after all. She's not bullet-proof like Federer, but she's resilient.

1. Tok SF - Ivanovic d. Sharapova
...6-1/0-1 ret.
A year ago, Sharapova lost to Hingis in the Tokyo SF. She didn't get her shot at a Japanese rematch after bowing out of this one.
2. Tok Final - Hingis d. Ivanovic
Ivanovic led 4-3 in the 1st set, then proceeded to drop the next seven games (including the first five without winning a point).
3. Tok QF - Ivanovic d. Jankovic
Whew! AnaIvo mercifully ended Jankovic's hectic early season schedule that had seen her play every week of the season, going 13-3 in sixteen matches. This week, at least, she rests.
4. Tok Doub.Final - Raymond/Stosur d. King/Stubbs
After a slow start to '07, Raymond & Stosur regained their Tier I form.
5. Tok 1st - Kirilenko d. Peer
Well, Shahar... I TRIED.

167..Martina Navratilova
154..Chris Evert
107..Steffi Graf
92...Margaret Smith-Court
68...Evonne Goolagong-Cawley
67...Billie Jean King
55...Virginia Wade
53...Monica Seles
51...Lindsay Davenport

8...Justine Henin
7...Serena Williams
6...Amelie Mauresmo
6...Venus Williams
5...Kim Clijsters
5...Mary Pierce
4...Maria Sharapova

25...Serena Williams
23...Kim Clijsters
21...Jelena Jankovic
20...Dinara Safina
19...Anna Chavetadze

5...Russia (2 wins)
3...Serbia (1)
2...Switzerland (1)
1...Belgium (1)
1...USA (1)


2006 FINAL: Mauresmo d. Pierce
2007 TOP: Henin/Mauresmo

SF: Vaidisova d. Henin; Chakvetadze d. Petrova
FINAL: Vaidisova d. Chakvetadze

...The Queen returns, but in her absence her throne was usurped by Sharapova (and Serena is lurking in the shadows, threatening to again pull the tour's strings). At least Justine won't have to deal with Clijsters this week. Defending champ Mauresmo IS in the bottom half of the draw, but likely rust and a surging Dynamova might be the biggest obstacles for HENIN in Paris. Vaidisova has been edging closer and closer in '07, and it seems a good time for what would be the biggest title of her career to date.

2006 FINAL: Peer d. Kostanic
2007 TOP: Bartoli/Kirilenko

SF: Bardina d. Nakamura; Mirza d. Kirilenko
FINAL: Bardina d. Mirza

...Hobart RU Bardina is the Russian-on-the Rise of the '07 season so far.

And finally this, from Serena Williams after the Australian Open...

"I've answered every criticism that I've had. And I plan on keeping answering them. The ones that hurt the most were that I wasn't fit. I felt that I was really fit.

I felt that people said I wasn't fit because I'm larger in some areas than other girls. I don't have a flat chest, I don't have a flat ass.

But I was looking in the mirror today. My waist is still 28 inches and I think it's all because I have a large bosom and a large ass.

If I lost 20 pounds, I'm still going to have these knockers -- forgive me -- and I'm still going to have this ass. It's just the way it is. I'm the same size and the same weight I was five years ago.

We're living in a Mary-Kate Olsen world. I'm just not built that way. I'm bootylicious, and that's how it's always going to be."

Hey, what more could I possibly I add to that?
All for now.


*-...ah, it's so nice to be "absolved" of responsibility for whatever may happen.


Blogger Clibanarius said...

Vaidisova def. JH no longer H? No way. And I'm a big fan of hers.

Final: Petrova vs JH no longer H.

Winner: no idea.

Bardina is something of a pocket A. Bondarenko. But having her take the title might be going too far.

Mon Feb 05, 12:01:00 PM EST  
Blogger Todd Spiker said...

"JH no longer H." I like that. :)

As far as Pattaya City... with the #1 seed (Bartoli) not playing very well yet this year, picking any of the players in a not-great draw would probably be asking a lot from them. But, hey, one of them HAS to win, right? :)

Mon Feb 05, 01:31:00 PM EST  
Blogger Clibanarius said...

Bardina already out, whomped by Bammer (unless that Slovakian livescore site got it wrong).

But I won't laugh at you, since the player I expected to do well in there (Kirilenko) is already out as well, with a score than hints at a massive choke (on a TIV 1R!).

Tue Feb 06, 09:47:00 AM EST  
Blogger Todd Spiker said...

Yeah, I don't like the direction my picks have gone the last two weeks. After having every player I picked to win at least make the final, that makes two 1st Round exits in a row.

Maybe Nicole can right this ship? I've got a bad feeling now. :)

Wed Feb 07, 08:36:00 AM EST  

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