W.Q- The Week Before the Fortnight
When Wimbledon arrives, they break out all the new technology.
Here's a quick recap of the qualifying rounds...
Q-PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Petra Cetkovska/CZE (#161)
...a repeat winner of the Wimbledon Q-PoW award (2013), Cetkovska reached the Round of 16 at SW19 in 2011, and has won at least one main draw match from 2011-14. A former Top 25 player who has dealt with numerous injuries the last few years, the now 30-year old Czech will get a chance to extend that 2nd Round streak after notching qualifying wins over Renata Voracova, Donna Vekic and Elyse Mertens.
RISERS: Margarita Gasparyan/RUS (#113), Richel Hogenkamp/NED (#123) and Laura Siegemund/GER (#127)
...Gasparyan, 20, has now qualified at the last two majors, after having made her slam debut in Paris last month. A three-time ITF title winner this season (she's 9-1 in career finals), the Hordette knocked off Alberta Brianti and Veronica Cepede Royg this week. 23-year old Hogenkamp adds a Wimbledon Q-run to the one she put up in Melbourne in January, becoming the third woman (Gasparyan & Petra Martic) this year to reach two major MD via the qualifying route. Siegemund will make her slam debut as a 27-year old, arriving at SW19 with 300+ wins as a pro and sporting the highest singles ranking of her career. She brushed aside the likes of Julie Coin and Mandy Minella to get there.
SURPRISES: Duan Yingying/CHN (#117) & Xu Yifan/CHN (#173)
...the Chinese contingent had gone 12-1 in the first two rounds of qualifying, with the one loss coming at the hands of another Chinese woman. Six had opportunities to reach the main draw in the Q3, but only Duan and Xu put up victories. Duan, 25, will appear in her fifth career slam MD, but she's still looking for her maiden win. She had wins over Patricia Mayr-Achleitner, Maria Sanchez and Anna Tatishvili this week. Xu, 26, will make her slam debut after knocking off Jang Su-jeong, Marina Melnikova and #3-seeded Louisa Chirico.
Xu Yifan & her goggles won. I guess wearing glasses is good for playing on grass.... pic.twitter.com/Y9xdj8lXbR— Ratazana (@Ratazana) June 25, 2015
VETERANS: Olga Govortsova/BLR (#122) & Hsieh Su-Wei/TPE (#130)
...Govortsova, 26, has reached the 2nd Round at SW19 three times (2007,'09,'12), and she's one win away from doing it again after taking out Kimiko Date-Krumm, Maria-Teresa Torro-Flor and Lui Fangzhou. Hsieh was the only sister to make it through the Wimbledon qualifying in either singles or doubles. The 29-year old, who reached the 3rd Round in '12, was the last sibling standing after wins over Petra Martic and Luksika Kumkhum in the final Q-round singles match to be completed, defeating the Thai in a 9-7 3rd set.
COMEBACKS: Bethanie Mattek-Sands/USA (#157) & Tamira Paszek/AUT (#242)
...BMS will add a little Wimbledon singles to her attempt at winning the third leg of a Doubles Grand Slam with Lucie Safarova, and maybe even snagging another Mixed title to go along with the one she claimed in Paris. The 30-year old Bannerette reached the Round of 16 at Wimbledon in 2008 (one of two 4r slam results in her career, w/ '13 RG). Thing is, she's only played one MD match at SW19 since 2011, and hasn't won any since that run seven years ago. Paszek, too, has some history at the AELTC. The Austrian, who's developed into something of a grass court specialist after being a tour singles champ at age 15, reached the Wimbledon QF in both 2011 and '12. This is the 24-year old's second consecutive qualifying run for SW19, as the current world #242 (the lowest-ranked woman in the MD other than unranked WC Laura Robson) had to take out young Brit Katie Swan and Wang Yifan in order to extend her stay in England into next week.
FRESH FACES: Sachia Vickery/USA (#112) & Aliaksandra Sasnovich/BLR (#136)
...hot off her Nottingham QF run, 20-year old Vickery continues to impress on the grass. She notched wins this week over Sorana Cirstea and Jessica Pegula to reach her first Wimbledon main draw, where she'll try to add another slam win to the single one she picked up in the 1st Round of the U.S. Open in 2013. Sasnovich, 21, will make her Wimbledon debut one year after getting her only career slam MD win last summer at the U.S. Open. She got wins this week over Tara Moore and Zhang Shuai.
It's a good day for the Belarusian contingent as Govortsova joins Sasnovich in qualifying for the Ladies' Main Draw. pic.twitter.com/fXtm8E1wQt— FansV1kaAzarenka (@FansV1ka) June 25, 2015
DOWN: Michelle Larcher de Brito/POR
...the #21 seed has reached the 3rd Round in the Wimbledon main draw the last two years, memorably upsetting Maria Sharapova in 2013. After her run in Birmingham (def. DC Ana Ivanovic), she seemed a good bet for something similar this time around. But with her ranking at #135 before her Birmingham run,, the 22-year old was forced into SW19 qualifying. She dodged a bullet in her opening match, saving 4 MP, but after failing to convert two MP of her own in the Q2 vs. Jessica Pegula the Portuguese woman's '15 run ended with a retirement with a wrist injury down 4-5 in the 3rd. Her final act before calling it a tournament was to hit a double-fault.
Larcher de Brito, who made R3 at #Wimbledon last two years, retired down 5-4 in third to Pegula. Right wrist injury, saw her in a cast now.— Ben Rothenberg (@BenRothenberg) June 24, 2015
Q1: #21 Michelle Larcher de Brito d. Ysaline Bonaventure
...1-6/6-3/12-10. After reaching the Ladies 3rd Round the last two years, MLdB barely escaped the opening round of qualifying. Bonaventure served for the match at 5-3, had three MP at 5-4 and a fourth at 7-6.
Q1: Julie Coin d. Lesley Kerkhove
...2-6/7-6(1)/6-4. Kerkhove led a set and 5-2, and served at 5-3 in the 2nd. Pastry Coin won fifteen of the final eighteen points in the set, the took the match in three.
Q1: Melanie Oudin d. Akgul Amanmuradova
...6-3/6-1. This was Little MO's first match since October after having eye and heart procedures.
Q1: Katie Swan d. Kristina Kucova
...6-3/6-4. The world #866 (#5 jr.) takes out #118.
Q1: #7 Olga Govortsova d. Kimiko Date-Krumm
...6-4/7-6(3). You can fit two and three-quarters Katie Swans (16) into one KDK (44).
Q1: Eri Hozumi d. Katerina Stewart 7-6(5)/7-5
Q1: Q1: #3 Louisa Chirico d. Gabriela Dabrowski 6-3/6-2
...obviously, the USTA's fault.
Q2: Jessica Pegula d. #21 Michelle Larcher de Brito
...1-6/7-6(7)/5-4 ret. MLdB's luck ran out here. After failing to convert 2 MP in the 2nd set TB, she ended up retiring late in the 3rd with a wrist injury.
Q2: #16 Wang Yafan d. Melanie Oudin
...6-4/6-3. Well, at least she's back.
Q2: #12 Luksika Kumkhum d. Stephanie Vogt
...5-7/7-6(4)/6-2. Vogt led 7-5/4-1 and had a MP at 6-5.
Q2: #22 Aliaksandra Sasnovich d. Tara Moore
...2-6/6-2/6-3. And the possibility of a Moore vs. Serena 1st Round match is put to rest. The London tabloids have a moment of silence.
Q3: Tamira Paszek d. #16 Wang Yafan
...6-4/6-7(6)/7-5. Paszek failed to convert four MP in the 2nd set TB, then saw Wang serve for the match at 5-4 in the 3rd. Finally, on her sixth MP, the Austrian prevailed.
Q3: Xu Yifan d. #3 Louisa Chirico
...7-5/6-3. On second thought, the USTA has no sway here.
=Sisters Who Weren't Meant for the Lawns...=
Q1 - Sorana Cirstea d. Naomi Osaka 2-6/6-1/6-4
Q1 - #2 An-Sophie Mestach d. Anastasia Rodionova 6-3/6-2
Q1 - Maria-Teresa Torro-Flor d. Varatchaya Wongteanchai 6-3/1-6/6-4
Q1 - Katie Swan d. Kristina Kucova 6-3/6-4
...there's only so much room.
=The Bondarenko Sister SW19 Blockade continues...=
Q2 - Elyse Mertens d. #10 Kateryna Bondarenko
...6-4/7-6(6). The 19-year old Waffle advances but -- whew! -- it wasn't easy. She got the break for a 6-4/5-2 lead, getting to within a game of the lead by converting on her 7th BP chance in game #7. She then served for the match at 5-2 and 5-4, held four MP at 5-3 and four more at 5-4. After being broken by Bondarenko, Mertens lost a lightning fast return game at love and K-Bond held SP a game later. But the Belgian pushed things to a TB, where Bondarenko held a second SP before Mertens finally put away MP #9. A Bondarenko hasn't appeared in the Wimbledon MD since 2012.
=...while only one sibling survives=
Q3 - #14 Hsieh Su-Wei d. #12 Luksika Kumkhum 6-1/5-7/9-7
FQ - Wang Yafan/Zhang Kai-lin d. #3 Chan Chin-Wei/Nicole Melichar 7-5/6-4
...Hsieh held a MP at 5-3 in the 3rd. Ultimately, the 16-game final set had nine breaks of serve, including six straight until the Taiwanese vet finally held to claim the last available qualifier spot in the MD.
*WIMBLEDON "Q-PLAYER OF THE WEEK" WINNERS*
2006 Meilen Tu, USA
2007 Hsieh Su-Wei, TPE & Olga Govortsova, BLR
2008 Maria Jose Martinez-Sanchez, ESP & Eva Hrdinova, CZE
2009 Viktoriya Kutuzova, UKR
2010 Kaia Kanepi, EST
2011 Alexa Glatch, USA
2012 Sandra Zaniewska, POL
2013 Petra Cetkovska, CZE
2014 Michelle Larcher de Brito, POR
2015 Petra Cetkovska, CZE
AO: Renata Voracova, CZE
RG: Veronica Cepede Royg, PAR
WI: Petra Cetkovska, CZE
Naomi Broady, GBR = her second straight SW19 WC, she defeated Timea Babos in the 1st Rd. in '14
Johanna Konta, GBR = the former Aussie (2008-12) was a '15 RG qualifier. She has one GS MD win ('12 U.S.), but she's 0-3 at SW19
Anett Kontaveit, EST = she qualified for Wimbledon last year to make her GS debut. The '12 Jr. RU (lost to Bouchard), the 19-year old won the $50K Eastbourne grass court challenger a few weeks ago.
Jelena Ostapenko, LAT = the' 14 SW19 girls champ, she's making her grand slam debut
Laura Robson, GBR = after missing 17 months following wrist surgery, Robson (still just 21) lost her first qualifying match in Eastbourne last weekend. The '08 Wimbledon junior champ, she reached the women's Round of 16 the last time she played at the AELTC in 2013.
none so far
*YOUNGEST 2015 SLAM...*
AO - Oceane Dodin, FRA (18)
RG - Fiona Ferro, FRA (18)
RG - Oceane Dodin, FRA (18)
RG - Louisa Chirico, USA (18)
WI - Jelena Ostapenko, LAT (18)
WI - Anett Kontaveit, EST (19)
AO - Ons Jabeur, TEN (20)
AO - Denisa Allertova, CZE (21)
RG - Margarita Gasparyan, RUS (20)
WI - Sachia Vickery, USA (20)
WI - Margarita Gasparyan, RUS (20)
WI - Aliaksandra Sasnovich, BLR (21)
=OLDEST 2015 SLAM...=
AO - none
RG - Virginie Razzano, FRA (32)
RG - Mathilde Johansson, FRA (30)
WI - none
AO - Stephanie Foretz, FRA (33)
AO - Renata Voracova, CZE (31)
AO - Lucie Hradecka, CZE (29)
RG - Lourdes Dominguez-Lino, ESP (34)
WI - Petra Cetkovska, CZE (30)
WI - Bethanie Mattek-Sands, USA (30)
WI - Hsieh Su-Wei, TPE (29)
=MOST 2015 SLAM Q=
2 - Margarita Gasparyan, RUS (RG/WI)
2 - Richel Hogenkamp, NED (AO/WI)
2 - Petra Martic, CRO (AO/RG)
=MOST 2015 SLAM WC=
2 - Oceane Dodin, FRA (AO/RG)
=CONSECUTIVE SLAM Q=
2 - Margarita Gasparyan, RUS
=CONSECUTIVE WIMBLEDON Q=
2 - Tamira Paszek, AUT
=CONSECUTIVE SLAM WC=
=CONSECUTIVE WIMBLEDON WC=
2 - Naomi Broady, GBR
All for now.