Friday, July 04, 2014

W.11- The Day Before the Day

It's Championships final eve, do you know where your finalists are?

A few important Backspin links from the careers of Petra Kvitova and Eugenie Bouchard:

"The Beginning of a Beautiful Friendship" (2011 Wimbledon Final)
"Petra." (2011 "Ms.Backspin" winner)
"Seeing is Beliebing" (Reaches 2014 AO SF)
"Roland Garros Day 10" (Reaches 2014 RG SF)
"Not Today, Genie. Not Yet." (2014 RG SF)

To be continued...

...while the first men's semifinal nearly claimed the honors, the closest battle of the day came at the annual July 4th Nathan's Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest on Coney Island in New York.

After proposing to his girlfriend on stage before the start of the competition, Joey "Jaws" Chestnut valiantly held off stout young challenger Matt Stonie, pulling ahead in the final two minutes of the ten-minute battle and ultimately downing 61 hot dogs and buns to Stonie's great-but-not-good-enough 56. Chestnut extends his amazing record winning streak in the event to eight years... but could a changing of the guard be coming in 2015? Stay tuned. ;)

In the women's event, Miki Sudo (right) upset three-time champ Sonya "The Black Widow" Thomas (left) to claim her first pink championship belt. the men's semifinals, Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer advanced to, respectively, their 14th and 25th career slam finals. Grigor Dimitrov held four set points in the 4th set that would have take things to a 5th against Djokovic, but the Serb survived as the Bulgarian had a difficult time keeping his footing on the worn Centre Court surface. Federer won in straights over Milos Raonic, who failed to join Genie Bouchard as a Canadian slam singles finalist at this Wimbledon. So, while the "young guns" made a big push, we'll have another "Big 4"-dominated major final this weekend. The Federer/Nadal/Djokovic/Murray combo are now assured of winning 36 of the last 38 slams, and have filled at least one slam final spot in 37 straight majors.

This will be just the second time that Federer and Djokovic have faced off in a slam final, with the only other match-up coming all the way back in the 2007 U.S. Open in what was just the sixth career meeting between the two (Federer won in straight sets to take his fourth of five straight Open titles). Federer leads the head-to-head series 18-16, including a 2-1 advantage this season. They've only played once on grass, with Federer winning in the Wimbledon SF two years ago en route to his most recent slam title. So, while Serena didn't get the chance to go for career slam #18 on the final weekend, Federer will. Djokovic is going for his seventh, as well as being able to reclaim the #1 ranking from Nadal. The Serb won his only Wimbledon crown in 2011. the women's doubles, Mladenovic Magic still reigns! Kiki & Timea Babos defeated Andrea Petkovic & Magdalena Rybarikova to advance to the final and a shot at the first WD slam title of both their careers. They'll face Sara Errani & Roberta Vinci, who downed Andrea Hlavackova & Zheng Jie in straights today. The Italians will be going for their fifth major crown, and a first Wimbledon title would complete a Career Doubles Grand Slam for the duo.

Mladenovic is still alive in the Mixed semis with Daniel Nestor, as well, though they didn't play today. They won the title at SW19 a year ago, and will next face Chan Hao-Ching & Max Mirnyi. The other SF pits Sam Stosur & Nenad Zimonjic against Vera Dushevina and Aisam Qureshi. the junior quarterfinals, two unseeded girls and the #8 and #12 seeds advanced to the final four. #8 Kristina Schmiedlova (SVK) defeated qualifier Michaela Gordon, and will meet Romania's Elena Gabriela Ruse, who upset #10-seed Xu Shilin (CHN). #12 Marketa Vondrousova, a Czech Maiden, defeated Spaniard Paula Badosa Gibert and will meet Jelena Ostapenko in the semi. The Latvian took out #3-seeded Tornado Black today. Black also lost in the girls doubles QF with Aussie Naiktha Bains.

Three of the semifinalists in the boys singles are American, as qualifier Noah Rubin will face unseeded Taylor Harry Fritz, while #6 Stefan Kozlov will meet France's Johan Sebastien Tatlot, the #8 seed.

...the wheelchair competition finally began on Day 11, and the top two seeded doubles teams advanced to the final. #1 Yui Kamiji & Jordanne Whiley (JPN/GBR) will face the Dutch #2-seeded duo of Jiske Griffioen & Aniek Van Koot. Kamiji & Whiley won both the AO and RG WC doubles titles earlier this season, and 20-year old Kamiji will be looking to secure her fourth title (w/ RG singles) in the five WC slam competitions held in 2014.

...and, finally, sadly, there's this:

And, yet, this:

Girl's got some backbone, I'd say. Hopefully that will serve her well with what comes next.

#13 Eugenie Bouchard/CAN vs. #6 Petra Kvitova/CZE

#1 Novak Djokovic/SRB vs. #4 Roger Federer/SUI

#14 Timea Babos/Kristina Mladenovic (HUN/FRA) vs. #2 Sara Errani/Roberta Vinci (ITA/ITA)

#1 Bob Bryan/Mike Bryan (USA/USA) vs. Vacek Pospisil/Jack Sock (CAN/USA)

#14 Max Mirnyi/Chan Hao-Ching (BLR/TPE) vs. #5 Kristina Mladenovic/Daniel Nestor (FRA/CAN)
#15 Samantha Stosur/Nenad Zimonjic (AUS/SRB) vs. #16 Vera Dushevina/Aisam Qureshi (RUS/PAK)

#12 Marketa Vondrousova/CZE vs. Jelena Ostapenko/LAT
Elena Gabriela Ruse/ROU vs. #8 Kristina Schmiedlova/SVK

(Q) Noah Rubin/USA vs. Taylor Harry Fritz/USA
#8 Johan Sebastien Tatlot/FRA vs. #6 Stefan Kozlov/USA

Tami Grende/Qiu Yu Ye (INA/CHN) vs. Usue Arconada/Fanny Stollar (USA/HUN)
Maria Bouzkova/Dalma Galfi (CZE/HUN) vs. #2 Priscilla Hon/Jil Belen Teichmann (AUS/SUI)

#1 Stefan Kozlov/Andrey Rublev (USA/RUS) vs. #7 Petros Chrysochos/Nino Serdarusic (CYP/CRO)
#3 Orlando Luz/Marcelo Zormann (BRA/BRA) vs. Naoki Nakagawa/Tim Van Rijthoven (JPN/NED)

#1 Yui Kamiji/Jordanne Whiley (JPN/GBR) vs. #2 Jiske Griffioen/Aniek Van Koot (NED/NED)

#1 Stephane Houdet/Shingo Kunieda (FRA/JPN) vs. Tom Egberink/Gordon Reid (NED/GBR)
Frederic Cattaneo/Joachim Gerard (FRA/BEL) vs. #2 Maikel Scheffers/Ronald Vink (NED/NED)

**2014 ATP FINALS**
7...Rafael Nadal (4-3)
3...Stan Wawrinka (3-0)
3...Grigor Dimitrov (3-0)
3...Marin Cilic (2-1)
3...Kei Nishikori (2-1)
3...Tomas Berdych (1-2)
3...Fabio Fognini (1-2)

7...Pete Sampras
7...William Renshaw
5...Bjorn Borg
5...Laurence Doherty
[Open era]
7...Pete Sampras
5...Bjorn Borg
3...Boris Becker
3...John McEnroe

25...ROGER FEDERER (17-7)
20...Rafael Nadal (14-6)
19...Ivan Lendl (8-11)
18...Pete Sampras (14-4)
17...Rod Laver (11-6)
16...Bjorn Borg (11-5)
16...Ken Rosewall (8-8)
25...ROGER FEDERER (17-7)
20...Rafael Nadal (14-6)
7...Andy Murray (2-5)
4...Lleyton Hewitt (2-2)

274...Roger Federer *
233...Jimmy Connors
224...Andre Agassi
222...Ivan Lendl
217...Roy Emerson
203...Pete Sampras
187...Rafael Nadal *
178...Stefan Edberg
174...Novak Djokovic *
171...Ken Rosewall

2004 d. Marat Safin 7-6,6-4,6-2
2006 d. Marcos Baghdatis 5-7,7-5,6-0,6-2
2007 d. Fernando Gonzalez 7-6,6-4,6-4
2009 lost to Rafael Nadal 5-7,6-3,6-7,6-3,2-6
2010 d. Andy Murray 6-3,6-4,7-6
2006 lost to Rafael Nadal 6-1,1-6,4-6,6-7
2007 lost to Rafael Nadal 3-6,6-4,6-4,6-4
2008 lost to Rafael Nadal 1-6,3-6,0-6
2009 d. Robin Soderling 6-1,7-6,6-4
2011 lost to Rafael Nadal 5-7,6-7,7-5,1-6
2003 d. Mark Philippoussis 7-6,6-2,7-6
2004 d. Andy Roddick 4-6,7-5,7-6,6-4
2005 d. Andy Roddick 6-2,7-6,6-4
2006 d. Rafael Nadal 6-0,7-6,6-7,6-3
2007 d. Rafael Nadal 7-6,4-6,7-6,2-6,6-2
2008 lost to Rafael Nadal 4-6,4-6,7-6,7-6,9-7
2009 d. Andy Roddick 5-7,7-6,7-6,3-6,16-14
2012 d. Andy Murray 4-6,7-5,6-3,6-4
2014 vs. Novak Djokovic
2004 d. Lleyton Hewitt 6-0,7-6,6-0
2005 d. Andre Agassi 6-3,2-6,7-6,6-1
2006 d. Andy Roddick 6-2,4-6,7-5,6-1
2007 d. Novak Djokovic 7-6,7-6,6-4
2008 d. Andy Murray 6-2,7-5,6-2
2009 lost to Juan Martin del Potro 6-3,6-7,6-4,6-7,2-6

2008 d. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 4-6,6-4,6-3,7-6
2011 d. Andy Murray 6-4,6-2,6-3
2012 d. Rafael Nadal 5-7,6-4,6-2,6-7,7-5
2013 d. Andy Murray 6-7,7-6,6-3,6-2
2012 lost to Rafael Nadal 4-6,3-6,6-2,5-7
2014 lost to Rafael Nadal 6-3,5-7,2-6,4-6
2011 d. Rafael Nadal 6-4,6-1,1-6,6-3
2013 lost to Andy Murray 4-6,5-7,4-6
2014 vs. Roger Federer
2007 lost to Roger Federer 6-7,6-7,4-6
2010 lost to Rafael Nadal 4-6,7-5,4-6,2-6
2011 d. Rafael Nadal 6-2,6-4,6-7,6-1
2012 lost to Andy Murray 6-7,5-7,6-2,6-3,2-6
2013 lost to Rafael Nadal 2-6,6-3,4-6,1-6

TOP QUALIFIER: Michelle Larcher de Brito/POR
TOP EARLY-ROUND (1r-2r): #5 Maria Sharapova/RUS
TOP MIDDLE-ROUND (3r-QF): #6 Petra Kvitova/CZE
TOP QUALIFYING MATCH: Q3: Paula Kania/POL d. Shelby Rogers/USA 7-6(12)/4-6/6-3
TOP EARLY-RD. MATCH (1r-2r): 1st Rd. -Coco Vandeweghe/USA d. #27 Garbine Muguruza/ESP 6-3/3-6/7-5 (on 13th MP, 9th in final game)
TOP MIDDLE-RD. MATCH (3r-QF): 4th Rd. - #9 Angelique Kerber/GER d. #5 Maria Sharapova/RUS 7-6(4)/5-6/6-4
FIRST WINNER: Elena Vesnina/RUS (def. Patricia Mayr-Achleitner/AUT)
FIRST SEED OUT: #17 Samantha Stosur/AUS (lost 1st Rd. to Wickmayer/BEL)
UPSET QUEENS: USA (def. 3 seeds and one ex-semifinalist in 1st Rd.)
NATION OF POOR SOULS: SVK (1-4 in 1st Rd.)
LAST QUALIFIER STANDING: Tereza Smitkova/CZE (4th Rd.)
LAST WILD CARD STANDING: Vera Zvonareva/RUS (3rd Rd.)
LAST BRIT STANDING: Naomi Broady & Heather Watson (2nd Rd.)
IT ("??"): Nominees: E.Bouchard/CAN; Y.Kamiji/JPN; Mladenovic/FRA
Ms.OPPORTUNITY: Lucie Safarova/CZE
COMEBACK: Vika's white shorts
CRASH & BURN: Sloane Stephens/USA (lost 1st Rd. to Kirilenko/RUS, ending 6 con. slam Round of 16 streak)
ZOMBIE QUEENS: A.Pavlyuchenkova/L.Safarova, RUS/CZE (saved 9 MP vs. Black/Mirza in Doubles 2nd Rd.)
DOUBLES STAR: Nominees: Y.Kamiji/JPN; K.Mladenovic/FRA; H-C.Chan/TPE; Errani/Vinci (ITA/ITA)
AMG SLAM FUTILITY UPDATE: DNP - singles (first time Medina-Garrigues didn't play Q/MD singles at a slam since 2003 Wimbledon, ending a 43-tournament appearance streak)
JUNIOR BREAKOUT: Nominees: J.Ostapenko/LAT; M.Vondrousouva/CZE; K.Schmiedlova/SVK; G.Ruse/ROU

All for Day 11. More tomorrow.


Blogger Diane said...

"Weather conditions got in the way" of one of the women getting to the goal of 45 hot dogs in 10 minutes. Couldn't they, like, close the roof??

Fri Jul 04, 10:50:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Todd.Spiker said...

Hmmm, I wonder if you'd get thrown into the Wimbledon version of the hoosegow if you tried to eat a hot dog at Centre Court?

Fri Jul 04, 11:29:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Diane said...

Someone would have to inspect the seriousness of the mustard stains on the white clothes :)

Fri Jul 04, 11:58:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Todd.Spiker said...

Oh, since I've put up a few "if Bouchard wins..." stats, here's a good one for Kvitova: if she wins she'd become the first woman not named Williams to win a second Wimbledon singles titles since Steffi Graf won #2 in 1989.

Additionally, she'd be just the eighth woman in the Open era -- after King, Evert, Navratilova, Goolagong, Graf, Venus & Serena -- with multiple Wimbledon titles. Pretty good company. HOFers all.

Sat Jul 05, 12:16:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Zidane said...

Bouchard is on the verge of a season Grand Slam! (Of losing against the winner...)

Sat Jul 05, 10:28:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Leif Mortensen said...

Congratulations to a great champ who played as a clockwork today without any maajor faults. Grasstennis at it's best - bravo :)

Sat Jul 05, 11:36:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Todd.Spiker said...

Hmmm, some people are saying that was the best Wimbledon final performance they've ever seen. I seem to remember people saying the same thing... ummm, three years ago when Kvitova defeated Sharapova to win her first, too.

Sat Jul 05, 12:23:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Eric said...

Tenacity is important and effective -- see: Evert, Sharapova, Bouchard...but there's something to be said about raw ability. Petra proved that she can blow very good players off the court.

Things I learned from this Wimbledon:
- Li Na and Petra are on the same internal clock of crazy.

- Venus really can win another major.

- Sam Stosur is potentially a lock for the US Open lol....

- Since improving her claycourt game, I don't think that Serena's game and mindset are that suited for grass.

Sat Jul 05, 12:40:00 PM EDT  

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