Sunday, March 15, 2015

Wk.10- The Bad, the Good and the Indian Wells

Hmmm, what's happened through two and a half rounds of action at Indian Wells? Well, some bad things... and some good.

The Bad: Indian Wells 2002-14
The Good: Indian Wells 2015: The Return

The Indian Wells: The future.

The Bad: In 2014, an injured Vika Azarenka valiantly-but-unwisely playing in Indian Wells getting blitzed 7-6/6-0 by Lauren Davis in her first match.
The Good: Vika returning in better form in 2015, with new coach Wim Fissette and hitting partner Sascha Bajin in tow, and showing good match toughness in turning around a 4-2 2nd set deficit to defeat Kirsten Flipkens in straight sets.
The Indian Wells: With a 4-2 record vs. Top 20 players this season, Azarenka will next face world #2 Maria Sharapova in their first meeting since the 2013 Roland Garros semifinals. Vika leads the career head-to-head 7-6.
The Bad: Hsieh/Mirza and Hingis/Pennetta go a combined 9-8 in 2015, with no titles.
The Good: Hingis/Mirza go 2-0 in the first week of action in the desert...
The Indian Wells: while Hsieh/Pennetta lose their only match.
The Bad: Bacsinszky can't play in Mexico forever, no matter how long she holds onto the great memories...

The Good: But Timea's Mexico memories are SO much fun...

The Indian Wells: Well, all good things must come to an... no, wait, maybe they DON'T! It looked like Bacsinszky's magic carpet ride was going to end in the 3rd Round against Ekaterina Makarova. She lost the 1st set, but then rallied to force a 3rd. She fell behind 4-2 there, but then surged back to win four straight games, breaking the suddenly error-prone Russian twice to extend her winning streak to fourteen matches. She's 9-1 in three-setters in 2015, and 20-2 overall.

The Bad: A tribute to Chrissie... but isn't that really Steffi?

The Good: So, what has the Frussian Pastry (Tatiana Golovin) been doing lately? Getting a meal... or becoming one?

The Indian Wells: Making sure no Sloane Stephens fan has a "Williams moment" to use against HER years from now? Just wondering.

The Bad: Well, you know...

The Good: A moment of sincere optimism...

The Indian Wells: Maybe Stephens should ask the tour to REALLY make Indian Wells a "fifth slam."
The Bad: Little MO needs to catch a break, man.

The Good: Dream Team

The Indian Wells: Oh, no. Not again! Stacey get out of there!

The Bad: No one really believed a Radwanskian repeat of an appearance in the I.W. final was in the cards this time around, but not making it past the first weekend wasn't on the radar, either.
The Good: The Cheesecake Queen lives!

The Indian Wells: Well, there's always 2016, I guess. And more cheesecake.
The Bad: Creep alert.

The Good: One of the benefits of tennis: former champions CAN show their stuff years later...

The Bieber: Acting all Bieber-y and such...

But Bouchard at least got in a typically sarcastic dig before he'd made ALL his rounds...


RISERS: Heather Watson/GBR & Lesia Tsurenko/UKR

...just before former British #1 Laura Robson takes the first on-court steps of her comeback in Miami, current British #1 Watson is rounding into good form after staging her own comeback over the last year or so. She opened 2015 by winning a title in Hobart, but hadn't put up a main draw win since before getting on the board in Indian Wells. She's taken the momentum and dashed off with it, too. The victory over Julia Goerges has already been followed by additional wins over Camila Giorgi (who reached the Round of 16 at I.W. in '14) and last year's runner-up Aga Radwanska. Radwanska defeated then-qualifier Watson in the 2nd Round a year ago in the desert, but couldn't take a set off her on Sunday in a frustrating, error-strewn contest (yes, AGA's game was error-strewn). After being 0-11 in previous matches, this was Watson's first win over a Top 10 player. Tsurenko has had a front row seat to Timea Bacsinszky's recent run, losing to her in BOTH Acapulco and Monterrey in the Swiss woman's back-to-back title runs. She even led the Queen of Mexico 6-4/4-2 in their 2nd Round match in Monterrey. The Ukrainian has had her own moments to savor so far in Indian Wells. After having a career year in '13, she posted just four MD tour wins in '14, but Tsurenko already has four in 2015, including wins this past week over Germans Annika Beck and Andrea Petkovic, countrywomen who have combined to win five WTA singles titles over the past year.
SURPRISES: Zhu Lin/CHN & Cristina Sanchez-Quintanar/ESP
...Zhu, 21, is closing in the Top 100. Coming in as the #119-ranked player in the world, she qualified in Indian Wells with victories over Paula Kania and Maria-Teresa Torro-Flor, then took out Francesca Schiavone in the main draw before losing in the 2nd Round to Sara Errani. Meanwhile, back in Port El Kantaoui, Tunisia there was CSQ STILL trying to get that first career ITF singles title. Once again, for the fourth straight event there, the former Texas A&M star reached the final, defeating the #6 seed and winning a semi over Margot Decker 4-6/6-0/6-0. But, in the final, #3-seeded Pastry Clothilde de Barnardi grabbed her eighth career title in a straight sets victory. Sanchez is 20-5 in singles in 2015 and was #758 at the start of the week, edging close to surpassing by what was her last official year-end WTA ranking (#761 in 2009). But the quest continues...
VETERANS: Martina Hingis/Sania Mirza (SUI/IND)
...after sometimes struggling to find consistent success with their regular partners of late, Top 10 doubles stars Hingis (#7) and Mirza (#5) teamed up for Indian wells and have found immediate success. So far. Their two wins have them in the quarterfinals. Coming into this week, Mirza had gone 6-4 (w/ no titles) with regular partner Hsieh Su-Wei, while having won her other event when partnering Bethanie Mattek-Sands. Hingis was 3-4 with regular partner Flavia Pennetta, but won her other event while partnering Sabine Lisicki. Interestingly, Hsieh & Pennetta teamed up in Indian Wells, losing their 1st Round match.
COMEBACKS: Sesil Karatantcheva/BUL & Sloane Stephens/USA
...Karatantcheva, still riding the high of her lucky-loser-to-semifinalist run in Acapulco, made it through qualifying in Indian Wells with wins over Cagla Buyukakcay and Pauline Parmentier. She got her first main draw I.W. win since 2005 (def. Marlene "The Blue Angel" Weingartner) when she took out Tsvetana Pironkova, then lost a round later to Coco Vandeweghe. Meanwhile, Sloane has been mostly "Current-proof" in Indian Wells. Good moments have been few and far between for Stephens since her 2013 Australian Open semi run, but trips to the desert have served to remind many of what she's sometimes capable of. She lost in her opening match as the #17-ranked player two years ago, but has since used Indian Wells as an oasis in her persona WTA, well, desert. Last year, she reached the QF. This year, at #42 and fighting to just stay in the Top 50 before the clay court season begins, she's put up wins over Chanelle Scheepers and Angelique Kerber. The win over #14 Kerber was Stephens' first Top 20 win of the season, and her best since taking down then-#13 Ana Ivanovic last year in this same tournament. The last time Sloane had multiple main draw victories in any event was last August in Cincinnati. She plays Svetlana Kuznetsova later on Sunday , with the "reward" for the winner a likely meeting with Serena Williams in the 4th Round.
FRESH FACES: Yulia Putintseva/KAZ & Ons Jabeur/TUN
...the 20-year olds both made it through Indian Wells qualifying and then put up main draw victories, as well. Putintseva knocked off Edina Gallovits and Arina Rodionova to reach the MD, then took out Czech Tereza Smitkova before losing to Ana Ivanovic in the 2nd Round. Putintseva came in at #107, and she may soon return to the Top 100. Her career high was #88 in 2013. Jabeur had Q-round wins over Denisa Allertova and Julia Boserup before upsetting #51 Kaia Kanepi in the 1st Round, her third-best career win (topped only by victories over #37 Bojana Jovanovski and '13, and #33 Zheng Jie in '12). The 2011 Roland Garros girls champ, who ultimately lost in the 2nd Round to Caroline Wozniacki, could achieve a new career-high rank when the singles rankings are posted after Indian Wells. She entered at #130, with her career-best an easily-within-grasp #126 (which she just reached last month).
DOWN: Bethanie Mattek-Sands/Lucie Safarova (USA/CZE), Angelique Kerber/GER and Aga Radwanska/POL January, BMS & Safarova teamed up for the first time and won the Australian Open. In their second pairing, well, things didn't go quite so well. They lost their 1st Round match in Indian Wells to Raluca Olaru & Olga Savchuk, dropping an 11-9 match tie-break after having led it 9-5 and holding four consecutive match points. Olaru/Savchuk won the last six points of the match. Meanwhile, Kerber's mini-freefall continues. After beginning 2015 in the Top 10, the German opened with back-to-back QF and SF results and a 5-2 record. Since then she's dropped to #14 and gone 2-6, dropping her third consecutive match (fourth in five) in her 2nd Round opener in Indian Wells to Sloane Stephens. Depending on what a few other players do, Kerber could fall as low #17 once things have finished up in the desert. Radwanska, a finalist a year ago in Indian Wells, was bounced on Sunday in the 3rd Round by Heather Watson in straight sets. A year after defeating Watson in the 2nd Round in California, Aga won just eight total games this time around and committed twenty-nine unforced errors to drop to 7-7 on the season (not including her 3-1 Hopman Cup record). Hmmm, considering the fickle notion of most coach-consultant/player arrangements of late, might Martina Navratilova's time in the Aga camp be nearing its end?
ITF PLAYERS: Katerina Stewart/USA & Olga Ianchuk/UKR
...Stewart, 17, is another of the rising Bannerettes. As the #1 seed, the Miami native won her fourth career ITF title at the $10K challenger in Gainesville, Florida with wins over fellow American teens Ingrid Neel (a lucky loser, in the QF) and Sonya Kenin (in a three-set final). Ianchuk, 19, grabbed her sixth career ITF singles title in the $10K event in Amiens, France. She put up wins over her sister Elizaveta (in the SF) and Pastry Alize Lim in the final. The Ianchuk sisters also teamed up to reach the doubles final.

JUNIOR STARS: Usue Arconada/USA, Kimberly Birrell/AUS & Sonya Kenin/USA
...16-year old Arconada, the junior #34, won her first career Grade 1 singles crown at the Banana Bowl in Sao Jose dos Campos, Brazil. After three semifinal and two runner-up results at Grade 1 events over the past fourteen months, Arconada finally got over the hump (as the #1 seed) with victories over the #3 and #12 seeds to reach the final, then #9-seeded fellow Bannerette Francesca di Lorenzo in a 6-1/6-7(6)/6-4 win in the decider. Birrell, 16, reached her first career ITF singles final on the grass Down Under in the $15K Mildura challenger. The '14 AO girls semifinalist got victories over Priscilla Hon, #2-seed Jang Su-Jeong and Sherazad Reiz before losing to fellow Aussie Alison Bai. Birrell is ranked #887 on the WTA computer, and #24 in the junior standings. Meanwhile, world #1034 (#19 girl) Kenin reached first-ever career pro finals in the singles and doubles at the $10K challenger in Gainesville. A member of the reigning U.S. Junior Fed Cup championship team, Kenin made it through qualifying as the #9 q-seed and ran off a total of seven straight wins before losing to Katerina Stewart in the final.
DOUBLES: Anna Bondar/Dalma Galfi (HUN/HUN)
...the junior Hungarians won the title at the $10K ITF challenger in Solarino, Italy. Bondar, 17, is the girls #49, while 16-year old Galfi comes in a #4 (she also reached the singles SF last week), and their win over Sofiya Kovalets & Janina Toljan gives them two titles in three career pro final appearances. For Bondar, it's her third ITF doubles win.

[I.W. Week 1]
1. I.W. 1st Rd. - Olaru/Savchuk d. Mattek-Sands/Safarova
...3-6/7-5 [11-9].
The AO champs led 9-5 in the match tie-break and had four consecutive MP, losing the last six points of the match to officially christen their partnership as a "feast-or-famine" proposition.
2. I.W. 1st Rd. - Niculescu/Panova d. Babos/Mladenovic
...3-6/7-6(4) [11-9].
Babos/Mladenovic held a MP in the 2nd set, then three more starting at 9-6 in the match tie-break.
3. I.W. 1st Rd. - Townsend d. Mattek-Sands
Unfortunately, BMS' trip to the desert didn't include a lot of tennis. Although, she DID manage to get in an extra set here after coming back from 6-4/3-0 down to force a 3rd.
4. I.W. 2nd Rd. - Stephens d. Kerber
Future Sloane makes a cameo appearance. But Current Kerber might have had a say in the result, too.
5. I.W. 1st Rd. - Stephens/Townsend d. Kops-Jones/Spears
...6-4/2-6 [10-8].
Nice to see two young American singles players teaming up in doubles. Both Stephens and Townsend were doubles achievers as juniors, picking up three girls slam titles each, though none with the other as a partner.
6. I.W. 3rd Rd. - Bacsinszky d. Makarova
Whew! Sorry, Serena, but you won't be matching Timea's tour-best 14-match season winning streak, after all. Well, not in Indian Wells, at least.
7. I.W. 2nd Rd. - Makarova d. Vesnina
When doubles partners meet. Hopefully, no hard feelings about that bagel.
8. I.W. 2nd Rd. - Jankovic d. Davis
Well, well. JJ lives. Davis reached the Round of 16 a year ago in Indian Wells, while Jankovic was a quarterfinalist. So maybe this IS an important match win for the Serb, who entered with a 2-4 record for the season, and her best win since last September coming over the world #77 earlier this year. She'll face Madison Keys next, looking for her first Top 20 victory since she defeated Sloane Stephens in Montreal last August.
9. I.W. 2nd Rd. - Tsurenko d. Petkovic
For all that Petko has accomplished in 2015, this loss drops her to 6-6 for the season.
10. I.W. 2nd Rd. - Lisicki d. Vinci
A win from the German -- just her second in eight matches this year -- didn't come without a "Sabine moment," as she served at 6-1/5-4 before being forced to win in three sets.
11. $10K Antalya Final - Victoria Kan d. Anna Schaefer
The 19-year old Hordette wins her twelfth career ITF title, while Schaefer loses in her circuit-best fifth '15 singles final (she's 2-3).
12. $10K Sao Jose dos Campos Final - Nadia Podoroska d. Victoria Bosio
The 18-year old Argentine is now 6-0 in career ITF singles finals.

Hopefully, this Vika won't show up on Monday against Maria.

One of those days ????????

A photo posted by Victoria Azarenka (@vichka35) on

For everyone's sake.

1. I.W. 2nd Rd. - Serena Williams d. Niculescu
In her first match in the desert since defeating Kim Clijsters in the 2001 final, Serena was a bit taken aback by the moment -- and the Romanian's odd, spinny game -- in the early going. Niculescu served for the set in the 1st. But after the cheers and tears were over (the first batch, anyway), Williams got everything together and won in two tight sets.
2. I.W. 3rd Rd. - Watson d. Aga Radwanska
Maybe Radwanska should call on Citizen Anna for some assistance?
3. I.W. 3rd Rd. - Karolina Pliskova d. Muguruza
If the race is on to see which one can reach the Top 10 -- or a slam semifinal -- first, then it's worth noting that the Czech is now 2-0 vs. the Spaniard in 2015.

4. $10K Amiens SF - Olga Ianchuk d. Elizaveta Ianchuk
Meeting for the first time since 2012, Olga takes out her older sister Elizaveta to run her career record in their head-to-head meetings to 3-0. Thanks, sis?
5. $10 Amiens Final - Olga Ianchuk d. Alize Lim
Olga now has six career ITF singles titles to Elizaveta's four.

6. $10K Amiens Final - Daniilidou/Csoregi d. Elizaveta Ianchuk/Olga Ianchuk
I guess Elizaveta was a bit of a bad luck charm in Amiens. On a side note, 32-year old Eleni Daniilidou takes her 16th career pro doubles title since 1998, but her first title of any kind since winning the $75K Albuquerque doubles with Coco Vandeweghe in 2013. By the way, 18-year old Ilka Csoregi, a former Swarmette, is now representing Hungary.
7. I.W. 1st Rd. - Kuznetsova/Vandeweghe d. Anastasia Rodionova/Arina Rodionova
Speaking of Coco, she was part of the winning effort here, as well. The Rodionova sisters held a match poit at 10-9 in the match tie-break.

On Caro Corner, she's at it again...

Bless her heart.

2007 Moscow 2r - Azarenka 7-6/6-2
2009 Los Angeles 2r - Sharapova 6-7/6-4/6-2
2009 Beijing 2r - Sharapova 6-3/6-7/7-5
2010 Stanford F - Azarenka 6-4/6-1
2011 Miami F - Azarenka 6-1/6-3
2011 Rome QF - Sharapova 4-6/3-0 ret.
2012 Indian Wells F - Azarenka 6-2/6-3
2012 Australian Open F - Azarenka 6-3/6-0
2012 Stuttgart F - Sharapova 6-1/6-4
2012 US Open SF - Azarenka 3-6/6-2/6-4
2012 Beijing F - Azarenka 6-3/6-1
2012 WTA Chsp. SF - Sharapova 6-4/6-2
2013 Roland Garros SF - Sharapova 6-1/2-6/6-4
2015 Indian Wells 3r - ???

**2015 ITF TITLES**
2...Amanda Carreras, GBR
2...Clothilde de Bernardi, FRA
2...Magarita Gasparyan, RUS
2...Daria Gavrilova, AUS
2...Victoria Kan, RUS
2...Sofia Kvatsabaia, GEO
2...Magda Linette, POL
2...Nudnida Luangnam, THA
2...Anne Schaefer, GER
2...Anastasija Sevastova, LAT
2...Isabella Shinikova, BUL
2...Julia Terziyska, BUL
2...Sachia Vickery, USA

2...Sachia Vickery, USA
1...Usue Arconada, USA
1...CiCi Bellis, USA
1...Gloria Liang, CAN
1...Katerina Stewart, USA
1...Marcela Zacarius, MEX

2006 Maria Sharapova d. Elena Dementieva
2007 Daniela Hantuchova d. Svetlana Kuznetsova
2008 Ana Ivanovic d. Svetlana Kuznetsova
2009 Vera Zvonareva d. Ana Ivanovic
2010 Jelena Jankovic d. Caroline Wozniacki
2011 Caroline Wozniacki d. Marion Bartoli
2012 Victoria Azarenka d. Maria Sharapova
2013 Maria Sharapova d. Caroline Wozniacki
2014 Flavia Pennetta d. Aga Radwanska

All for now.


Blogger jo shum said...

Nice write up. Tough for seeks but she will be fine after. Not supposed by pliskova but never thought aga would lose to Watson. And to see Sloane goes this far? Safarova...

Sun Mar 15, 10:11:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Todd.Spiker said...

Yeah, good nerve shown by Stephens in the final game (returning, so that helps) vs. Kuznetsova. Of course, that was after losing a 4-0 lead in the 3rd and missing all her first serves when serving for the match at 5-3, up 30/15. But, hey, a win is a win. It probably helped that Sveta was her opponent, since both tend to go in-and-out of focus during a match.

Reality will probably hit Sloane in the face vs. Serena, though.

Still, a good outing for her.

Pliskova/Halep, assuming Simona def. Lepchenko tonight, will be fun.

We might get a real rubber-meets-the-road moment in the QF, where it could be Serena (on what would be a 13-match winning streak going back to '14) vs. Bacsinszky (who'd have won 15 con. w/ a win over Svitolina).

Sun Mar 15, 10:25:00 PM EDT  
Blogger jo shum said...

todd, nice that you still could get my spelling errors by the courtesy of iphone... i meant it's a tough week for serena to be back. yes looking forward to pliskova to halep. just a feeling that she might get a revenge this time.

yes, bascinszky was great. the reason i wanted but didn't comment was that her name is just too long! pls someone find a nickname for her. definitely on a hot streak. just wonder, if this is one of those hot streak or she will actually stick around.

Sun Mar 15, 11:31:00 PM EDT  
Blogger jo shum said...

okay here, you got to give it to djokovic. such fun person. first part of the video.

Sun Mar 15, 11:45:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Todd.Spiker said...

Ha! Yeah, I wasn't sure what "seeks" was supposed to be. ;)

I might end up using "TimiBacs" (or some variation) since that's her Twitter username. It is sort of like a mini-speedbump when it comes time to typing her name, since you sort of have to pause to make sure you get all the letters in there in the correct order. But, hey, it took me much, much longer to figure out how to accurately go with "Buyukakcay," so Bacsinszky is at least a tiny bit easier. :D

Haha! That report mentions Boris Becker. Somehow, I tend to think that Novak's coach has a long history with belly dancers, as well. ;)

Mon Mar 16, 12:38:00 AM EDT  
Blogger jo shum said...

vika is actually quite relaxed, funny responses. won't know how she will be tomorrow after the match with maria.

Mon Mar 16, 02:11:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Leif Mortensen said...

May I excuse my coments about Bencic she's improved quite a lot since last i saw her. Ok the background was a Wozniacki meltdown but nothing taken away from Bencic win.

Mon Mar 16, 06:19:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Todd.Spiker said...

Well, I think BB is like so many young players. Some days are good, some are bad. Today was a good one.

Expected a bit more from Caro, though. She's taken a bit of a half-step back this season from her late '14 run. Hopefully she'll pick things up again soon. :\

Mon Mar 16, 07:40:00 PM EDT  
Blogger jo shum said...

Vika had good opportunities in 4-3 40-15 first set. Took a step back and poops, gone , done and dusted. Maria ran away with it. Good lesson. At she knew and talked about it in the interview. So, looking like no.1 and no.2 seed again.

Tue Mar 17, 11:17:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Todd.Spiker said...

Yeah, Vika let that bad line call on game point for a hold for 5-5 get to her. She lost her focus, got broken and had a slow start in the 2nd trying to get past it.

She rebounded late, but who's going to come back from 5-1 against Sharapova? Maybe not even Serena (well...). Breaking and saving four MP to hold for 5-3 was something to take from the effort, and making Maria take 6 MP to finally put it away allows her get off to Miami without being totally upset with herself, at least.

Yeah, probably Serena/Maria... but I'm not going to totally discount Pennetta (when she's comfortable at an event, one never knows) or Garcia in the bottom half. Bouchard would have to prove herself against Sharapova, but she HAS looked very good so far, too.

Tue Mar 17, 01:19:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Galileo said...

Well we Kuznetsova cursed Sharapova good. Will it take out Serena too? It seems to me that Pova has a matchup issue with Flavia. It feels that way. That feeling when a certain player never seems to beat another.
I watched Timea [I can spell her first name] and it was a delight. She's so fun to watch. She hits a lot of different shots well. She's how Dolgopolov should be. It's hard to define her game but it works and it really is enjoyable to watch. Err, what odds on Pennetta to win?

p.s- I don't know what you've unleashed but the KC isn't dying anytime soon.You called Serena to win all four slams last year and, well, the rest is history.

Tue Mar 17, 10:35:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Todd.Spiker said...

Ha! Well, the way things generally go -- Serena will win all four slams THIS year. One down... ;)

Tue Mar 17, 11:31:00 PM EDT  
Blogger jo shum said...

wow what a turn of event. came back from meetings and everyone is out of IW almost. your curse is very strong this time... even serena had to play 3 sets to beat sloane?! what just happened? i don't know what is more surprised, maria lost to penetta, bouchard lost to qualifier or jankovic actually kept winning??

Wed Mar 18, 04:10:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Galileo said...

The curse is getting stronger. It's affecting me and I wasn't even here when it was created ;)

Wed Mar 18, 06:04:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Todd.Spiker said...

You mean EVERYONE didn't have Tsurenko, JJ, Lisicki and Flavia as the final four in the bottom half?

Crazy. Not that they're still around... but that three of them -- you know which three -- have quelled their demons for so long over the SAME two-week stretch! Oh, the odds...

By the way, I'm liking this two-week event set-up where I can watch good matches and not have to keep copious notes so that I can write a match report afterward. I'm just sayin'. :D

(And we get another of these starting next week in Miami, too! I like March.)

Hey, Stacey... can you add one or two more of these to the schedule? ;)

Wed Mar 18, 01:18:00 PM EDT  
Blogger jo shum said...

Kvitova pulled out of Miami

Thu Mar 19, 10:53:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Eric said...

Isn't Serena's streak at 14 matches? why does everyone keep saying there a match I'm not counting?

2 from YECs
7 Australia
1 Fed Cup
4 from this week into the SFs?

Thu Mar 19, 12:38:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Todd.Spiker said...

Actually, it was three from the YEC, her final round robin match (vs. Bouchard), SF and Final.

Thu Mar 19, 03:26:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Galileo Sutherland-west said...

Could Halep take number one this year? Like realistically not just mathematically?
Also, I totally called Raonic. Nearly makes up for how badly wrong I picked the rest of it :)

Fri Mar 20, 08:17:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Todd.Spiker said...

Hard to see it. Especially when you consider that Serena has so many points that she can still pick up because of her lacking '14 results in Paris and London, and that Halep probably won't play as often as she did a couple of years ago when won those six titles, and the events she will play will be most of the bigger ones, meaning the likes of Williams, Sharapova, Kvitova and others will be in those draws, as well.

Fri Mar 20, 10:51:00 PM EDT  
Blogger jo shum said...

The curse. No serena and Maria. Kind of anti climax after the hype of full draw.

Sat Mar 21, 02:45:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Todd.Spiker said...

Yeah, if she wasn't going to be in the final, you'd like to at least have seen Serena's exit come via a loss. :(

At least the crowd handled the announcement well, though I figure at least half had already heard the news via social media on their phones. Carillo and Annacone on Tennis Channel were acting as if it was going to shock everyone in attendance... but it's 2015, people, watching a tennis match live in a stadium no longer means you're in a media blackout bubble.

Sat Mar 21, 10:51:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Diane said...

Can Carillo and Annacone really be that ignorant? That's a scary thought (all of Sloane's remarks are coming back to me). On the off-chance that they really aren't that ignorant, then they were just creating extremely lame drama. Either way, the team of Carillo-Annacone is as obnoxious as the team of Carillo-Davenport.

Sun Mar 22, 12:11:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Eric said...

Madison's loss to JJ doesn't seem as bad in retrospect. JJ's DTLs really got to Madison.

JJ's added some air/spin to her shots. Lisicki totally lost the mental battle v JJ the other day -- she had a good chance to win that match. The difference between someone who can get to number 1 and someone who can't stay in the top 10.

Sun Mar 22, 01:38:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Eric said...

You have to think that the pain was pretty bad for Serena to pull out...esp considering the players get an extra day of rest between the SFs and Fs.

Sun Mar 22, 01:55:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Eric said...

Bet Serena's rueing withdrawing now. Halep injured...JJ coming off injury...

Sun Mar 22, 03:31:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Eric said...

When did JJ become Rafa? Perhaps a good clay season ahead for her.

Sun Mar 22, 03:43:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Eric said...

JJ playing way too passively if she wants to close out Halep. It's not a good sign if Halep can outlast the ever-steady JJ in a rally.

Sun Mar 22, 03:51:00 PM EDT  

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