Saturday, September 13, 2008

WTA Backspin 3Q Awards

And down the stretch they come!

**3Q (Week 28-36) Awards**
1. Serena Williams/USA
...but will there be an upcoming encore to Serena's latest sold-out show?
2. Elena Dementieva/RUS
...her trip to Beijing was Golden.
3. Dinara Safina/RUS
...she ultimately fell victim to Jelena Syndrome (exhaustion) -- and Serena, of course -- in New York, but she's still the first player in WTA history to notch wins over three different reigning #1-ranked players in a single season.
4. Cara Black & Liezel Huber/ZIM-USA
...the only totally dominant #1's in the professional tennis computer rankings, now with an '08 slam title to flaunt.
5. Jelena Jankovic/SRB
...she didn't win the Open, but if New York Jelena spans the globe she could be a grand slam champion by the time she arrives back in town next year.
6. Sara Errani/ITA
...she finally reached the winner's circle at the start of the 3Q... twice.
7. Caroline Wozniacki/DEN
...C-Woz is just about ready for her close-up.
8. Alize Cornet/FRA
...she's conquered the clay, next comes hard court.
9. Aleksandra Wozniak/CAN
...finally A-Woz sees a Canadian tennis champion... and it's her!
10. Nadia Petrova/RUS
...quietly overseeing a moderately successful rehab of her season.
H.M.- Vera Zvonareva/RUS, Dominika Cibulkova/SVK

1. Dinara Safina, RUS
2. Jelena Jankovic, SRB
3. Vera Zvonareva, RUS
4. Flavia Pennetta, ITA
5. Marion Bartoli, FRA
6. Li Na, CHN
7. Katarina Srebotnik, SLO
8. Pauline Parmentier, FRA
9. Anna-Lena Groenefeld, GER
10. Lucie Safarova, CZE
11. Vera Dushevina, RUS
12. Yaroslava Shvedova, KAZ
13. Agnes Szavay, HUN
14. Bethanie Mattek, USA
15. Barbora Zahlavova Strycova, CZE
HM- Hsieh Su-Wei, TPE

1. Sara Errani, ITA
2. Caroline Wozniacki, DEN
3. Alize Cornet, FRA
4. Aleksandra Wozniak, CAN
5. Dominika Cibulkova, SVK
6. Victoria Azarenka, BLR
7. Julia Goerges, GER
8. Michelle Larcher de Brito, POR
9. Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, RUS
10. Stefanie Vogele, SUI
11. Kristie Haerim Ahn, USA
12. Zhang Shuai, CHN
13. Tamira Paszek, AUT
14. Sorana Cirstea, ROU
15. Ioana Raluca Olaru, ROU
HM- Alexa Glatch, USA & Anastasia Pivovarova, RUS

1. Coco Vandeweghe, USA
2. Melanie Oudin, USA
3. Gabriela Paz, VEN
4. Elena Bogdan, ROU
5. Kristina Mladenovic, FRA
6. Noppawan Lertcheewakarn, THA
7. Gail Brodsky, USA
8. Tamaryn Hendler, BEL
9. Quirine Lemoine, NED
10. Victoria Kamelskaya, RUS
HM- Christina McHale, USA

1. Aleksandra Wozniak, CAN
2. Julie Coin, FRA
3. Mariya Koryttseva, UKR
4. Andreja Klepac, SLO
5. Anne Keothavong, GBR
6. Lucie Hradecka, CZE
7. Severine Bremond, FRA
8. Hana Sromova, CZE
9. Shenay Perry, USA
10. Gabriela Paz, VEN
HM- Sloane Stephens, USA

1. Elena Dementieva, RUS
2. Cara Black & Liezel Huber, ZIM/USA
3. Nadia Petrova, RUS
4. Venus Williams, USA
5. Anabel Medina-Garrigues & Virginia Ruano-Pascual, ESP/ESP
6. Kimiko Date-Krumm, JPN
7. Ai Sugiyama, JPN
8. Amelie Mauresmo, FRA
9. Lisa Raymond, USA
10. Severine Bremond, FRA
HM- Rennae Stubbs, AUS

1. Anna-Lena Groenefeld, GER
2. Kimiko Date-Krumm, JPN
3. Elena Bovina, RUS
4. Jelena Dokic, AUS
5. Jamea Jackson, USA
HM- Karolina Sprem, CRO & Romina Oprandi, ITA

1. Maria Sharapova, RUS
2. Svetlana Kuznetsova, RUS
3. Ana Ivanovic, SRB
4. Nicole Vaidisova, CZE
5. Daniela Hantuchova, SVK
HM- Tatiana Golovin, FRA & Sania Mirza, IND

[Week 28-36]
1. Anna-Lena Groenefeld, GER
2. Kimiko Date-Krumm, JPN
3. Elena Bovina, RUS
4. Ioana Raluca Olaru, ROU
5. Melanie Oudin, USA
6. Yaroslava Shvedova, KAZ
7. Bojana Jovanovski, SRB
8. Jelena Dokic, AUS
9. Mara Santangelo, ITA
10. Ksenia Milevskaya, BLR
11. Patricia Mayr, AUT
12. Lenka Wienerova, SVK
13. Petra Martic, CRO
14. Mariana Duque-Marino, COL
15. Neuza Silva, POR
HM- Romana Tabakova, SVK & Urszula Radwanska, POL

Serena Williams claims the U.S. Open title without dropping a set, grabbing her ninth career slam title and returning to #1 for the first time in five years
Russia sweeps the Beijing medal stand with Elena Dementieva, Dinara Safina and Vera Zvonareva keeping every other nation's flags locked away for safe keeping during the medal ceremony
Cara Black wins both the Women's Doubles (with Liezel Huber) and Mixed Doubles (with Leander Paes) titles at the U.S. Open

U.S. Open QF - S.Williams def.. V.Williams 7-6/7-6
...imagine if they'd played a third set in what would have likely been the longest women's match in Open history (as it turned out, this year's 3:05 Round of 16 tilt between Sybille Bammer and Marion Bartoli stands atop the heap).
U.S. Open Final - S.Williams def. Jankovic 6-4/7-5
...a near-classic that might have flirted with high drama had it gone three. Still, it was the closest Open final since 1995.

"Because Justine isn't here anymore." - Elena Dementieva, when asked why no one has been able to hold onto the #1 ranking for very long in 2008

Stanford QF - Sugiyama def. Cibulkova 6-7/7-6/5-3 ret.
...Cibulkova led 7-6/5-2 and held a match point, but the veteran Sugiyama held on and eventually saw the teenager succumb to cramps in the 3rd set.
U.S. Open 2nd Rd. - Coin d. Ivanovic 6-3/4-6/6-3 #188, qualifier Coin's defeat of the world #1 was the biggest upset (as far as rankings are concerned) in U.S. Open history. For AnaIvo, it was more of the same sort of thing she's encountered since winning in Paris and ascending to the top spot. Now, she's #3.

Aleksandra Wozniak qualifies in Stanford, then wins the tournament to become the first Canadian singles champion on tour since 1988. A-Woz was literally in diapers when Helen Kelesi won that title.
In Los Angeles, just as she'd done so often in Paris, Dinara Safina survived a match point against Alla Kudryavtseva in their 2nd Round match and went on to win the title and claim the U.S. Open Series crown. Apparently, the Russian Cat still has a few lives to spare.

"I thought maybe my last name was Williamsowski or something." - Venus Williams, about her surprise upon realizing that she had so many fans in Poland

Jelena Jankovic showed that she's ready to win a grand slam
Ana Ivanovic showed that she's not yet ready to be #1
Come 2009, if Dinara Safina can be just a little LESS like her brother she might BE #1 rather than defeating #1's
Michelle Larcher de Brito, so far, looks to be as good as advertised
Ashley Harkleroad can not only pose for Playboy, but get pregnant soon afterward, too. (Hmmm, coincidence?) What's next, a spot on the Republican party presidential ticket in 2012?
With Coco Vandeweghe's becoming the first U.S. Open Girls champ from America since 1995, and three other American girls reaching the junior QF, maybe this new wave of U.S. teens ARE worth keeping a close eye on.
Anna-Lena Groenefeld and her 128-mph serve showed just how quickly a player can make a comeback if she's blessed with at least one superior weapon
Four additional years of development saw China's Olympic tennis haul go from a Doubles Gold to a Doubles Bronze
Mommy Myskina is alive and well... on Russian TV. Oh my, the Mind of Myskina on LIVE TV?
The ITF is where Comebacks are born: Groenefeld, Elena Bovina, Jelena Dokic, Romina Oprandi and Kimiko Date-Krumm were all crowned champions in the 3Q.
Serena proved that history CAN be repeated. Hmmm, I wonder which Williams history -- good or bad -- will be repeated next?
Millions of dollars, athletic success and world-wide superstardom gets you... doctors who misdiagnose shoulder injuries that cost you a third of your season in a year when everything is up for grabs. Whoops, talk about a glitch in the program. 2008 started so well for Miss Sharapova, but it's ending with quite a thud.
When you think about it, it's oddly fitting that while Jankovic was briefly the #1-ranked player in 2008, Evonne Goolagong has actually "been #1" for a longer period of time (two weeks) over the past year... and she hasn't played a match in twenty-five years.

Ah, it could only happen to Queen Chaos.

Hmmm... what does the always cloudy crystal ball foresee in the future? Or, at least, what are the immediate hunches for the winners of the biggest tournaments over the next twelve months (hey, immediate hunches played out pretty well at this year's Wimbledon and U.S. Open, so who knows):

SEC: S.Williams d. Dementieva (Alternate: Safina, Long Shot: Jankovic)
Australian Open: Safina d. S.Williams, or vice versa (Alternate: Jankovic, Long Shot: Davenport)
Roland Garros: Jankovic d. Ivanovic (Alternate: Safina, Long Shot: S.Williams)
Wimbledon: V.Williams d. S.Williams (Alternate: Sharapova, Long Shot: Radwanska)
U.S. Open: S.Williams d. Sharapova (Alternate: Jankovic, Long Shot: Safina)

Of course, so much can change in so little time. Just look at the 2008 season... and it's not even over yet.

All for now.


Blogger mjgrace22 said...

Does anyone know how Myskina did on her commentating gig in Russian TV?

Sat Sep 13, 08:42:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Diane said...

FYI...Myskina has been a TV star in Russia for a long time now, and not just for sports. She does all kinds of shows.

I don't expect Davenport to be around next year.

Mon Sep 15, 06:22:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Todd Spiker said...

I'm sure Myskina would be entertaining at whatever she does. She was a sort of "mini-Jankovic" way back when, what with all the odd and interesting comments that came from "The Mind of Myskina" over the years. :)

Yeah, unfortunately, I don't really expect Davenport back next season, either. But if she did, she'd be at her very best in that first month of the season before her body began to betray her.

Mon Sep 15, 07:49:00 PM EDT  

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