Tuesday, November 24, 2009

ITF Backspin (Wk.46)- A Hordette, a Maiden and No Kindness From a Stranger

ITF Backspin. A day late. Not a dollar short (not very long, either). But the first production since I finally got that "Decade's Best" taste out of my mouth.

the 20-year old Russian won the $50K Bratislava challenger in the Slovak Republic, getting wins over Michaella Krajicek, Sofia Arvidsson and Renata Voracova 6-4/6-2 in the final.
RISER: Sandra Zahlavova/CZE
Czech Maiden Zahlavova opened the 2009 season with a 1-9 slide that lasted into April. She's since rebounded, though, advancing to six ITF singles finals over the course of the season. Her victory in the $25K in Opole, Poland was her second title of the year. After knocking off Simona Halep, Zahlavova defeated Serbia's Ana Jovanovic 6-0/6-2 in the final.
SURPRISES: Camila Giorgi/ITA & Mashona Washington/USA
Italy's Giorgi, 17, claimed her second ITF title of the season with a win in the $50K in Toronto. Before taking out Aniko Kapros 4-6/6-4/6-0 in the final, she got wins over the likes of Ashley Weinhold, Valerie Tetreault, Alexandra Stevenson and #1-seed Stephanie Dubois. Meanwhile, in the same event, veteran Washington got wins over Lauren Albanese and Sophie Ferguson before taking Dubois to three sets in the QF. She and Sharon Fichman also reached the doubles final, which they couldn't play because of an injury to Fichman.
VETERANS: Rika Fujiwara/JPN & Anne Kremer/LUX
Fujiwara, 28, won the Pune, India $50K with a 5-7/6-4/6-3 victory over Bojana Jovanovski in the final. In Bratislava, Kremer, 34, qualified and notched wins over Ekaterina Bychkova (who retired from the match at 5-0 in the 2nd set, but not while leading Luxembourg's Own, ala Caroline Wozniacki -- Kremer was up 7-5/5-0) and Vesna Manasieva before falling in three sets in the SF to Renata Voracova.
FRESH FACE: Olivia Rogowska/AUS
the 18-year old Rogowska is already preparing for the Oz circuit, winning a $25K in Esperance, Australia. Her victim in the final? Well, none other than Alicia Molik, who sure has been fitting in a great deal of tennis into her Down Under comeback the last couple months. Rogowska won 6-1/3-6/6-2, and also won the doubles title with fellow Shiela Shannon Golds.
DOWN: Tamarine Tanasugarn/THA
the #1 seed in the $50K Pune event, vet Tanasugarn, who actually defended a grass court WTA tour title in the Netherlands over the summer despite seeing her year-end ranking take a tumble over the past year, was taken out in the challenger's QF round by Nina Bratchikova by a 6-3/6-2 score.
JUNIOR STAR: Marianne Jodoin/CAN
in Toronto, the 16-year old Canadian grabbed the $50K doubles title along with 38-year old countrywoman Maureen Drake. Unseeded, the pair reached the final, then were awarded the win over Fichman/Washington when fellow Canadian Fichman was too injured to play.

1. $50K Bratislava SF - Renata Voracova def. Anne Kremer
The kindness of a stranger act wasn't passed down from Wozniacki to Voracova, apparently.
2. $50K Toronto 1st Rd. - Alexandra Stevenson def. Heather Watson
Hmmm, I wonder if Brit Watson knew before this match that Stevenson was a former Wimbledon Ladies singles semifinalist? I wonder how many people who actually witnessed that result back in '99 remember it all these years later, or maybe think it's some sort of reverse "FlashForward" vision thing?
3. $50K Toronto 1st Rd. - Christina McHale def. Julia Glushko
I guess McHale didn't topple over due to the heat here. Of course, this WAS Toronto... in November... indoors... without a broken air conditioning system. The Oz Open is but two months away, though. (Fingers crossed)

  • Lyudmyla Kichenok gets her moment in the ITF website spotlight

  • ...is Nadiya next?

  • Zoo Tennis' Colette Lewis reviews Andre Agassi's autobiography

  • ...I'm still not sure whether or not I really want to read his book or not.

  • Year in Review by Women Who Serve's Diane Dees

  • ...yeah, this is from a week and a half ago, but since the "WTA Yearbook" is coming up this weekend...

    3...Galina Fokina
    2...Yulia Kalabina
    2...Daria Kuchmina
    2...Regina Kulikova
    2...Ksenia Pervak
    2...Arina Rodionova

    All for now.

    NEXT: 2009 WTA Yearbook


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