Sunday, July 19, 2015

Wk.28- Lucky Sevens

In Week 28, seven was a very lucky number as a pair of #7 seeds walked away with WTA singles titles.

#1: 10
#2: 1
#3: 5
#4: 4
#5: 3
#6: 1
#7: 2
#8: 1
Unseeded: 7

In Bucharest, seventh-seeded Anna Schmiedlova avenged her loss in this year's Rio final to Sara Errani by taking out the #1-seeded Italian in the championship match to claim her second career title, and second of 2015. The Slovak won in Katowice in the spring before seeing her results take a huge dip before her rebound this week.

In Bastad, Sweden's #7-seeded Johanna Larsson finally won her first tour-level singles title, thrilling a home crowd en route to becoming the first woman from the host nation to take the singles crown at the event since 1986. She, just like Schmiedlova, didn't drop a set all week. Larsson won the doubles, as well.

But maybe most intriguingly of all, Larsson got to put her hands on the Swedish Open trophy. Which, as far as I can tell, looks like some sort of warthog with golden wings.

And that should could for SOMETHING, right?

BUCHAREST, ROMANIA (Int'l $227K/Red Clay)
S: Anna Schmiedlova/SVK def. Sara Errani/ITA 7-6(3)/6-3
D: Kalashnikova/Schuurs (GEO/NED) d. Mitu/Tig (ROU/ROU) 6-2/6-2

BASTAD, SWEDEN (Int'l $227K/Red Clay)
S: Johanna Larsson/SWE def. Mona Barthel/GER 6-3/7-6(2)
D: Bertens/Larsson (NED/SWE) d. Maria/Savchuk (GER/UKR) 7-5/6-4

WS: GOLD: Mariana Duque/COL d. Victoria Rodriguez/MEX 6-4/6-4
WS: BRONZE: Monica Puig/PUR d. Lauren Davis
WD: GOLD: Dabrowski/Zhao (CAN) d. V.Rodriguez/Zacarias (MEX)
WD: BRONZE: Irigoyen/Ormaechea (ARG) w/o Haddad/Goncalves (BRA)
MX: GOLD: Irigoyen/Andreozzi (ARG) d. Dabrowski/Bester (CAN)
MX: BRONZE: Cepede Royg/Galeano (PAR) d. Duque/Struvay (COL)

PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Anna Schmiedlova/SVK
...playing in her third final of the season, the 20-year old Slovak grabbed her second title with a win in the final over #1-seeded Sara Errani in a rematch of the Rio final won by the Italian veteran. Schmiedlova's previous hard court title in Katowice (where she defeated another Italian, Camila Giorgi) was given a red clay twin this week, as she didn't lose a set all week while stringing together wins over Reka-Luca Jani, Denisa Allertova, Danka Kovinic, Polona Hercog an Errani. "I still cannot believe I won, because it was a really tough match and Sara Errani is an amazing player," Schmiedlova said. "I knew she'd be playing really well, and I knew it would be tough to focus on each point today because we would have really, really long rallies." After taking the 1:13 1st set, Schmiedlova pulled away in the 2nd to record her first career Top 20 victory (though she DID defeat a then-#29 Venus Williams at RG last year). This run was a much-needed one for Schmiedlova, as she'd been in something of an under-the-radar tailspin of late. She gone just 5-8 since winning in Katowice, with three of those wins coming in her semifinal run in Marrakech in her first event after that maiden title. She actually arrived in Bucharest having lost seven of her previous eight matches, including 1st Round exits at both Roland Garros and Wimbledon. She jumps to a near career-best #44 on Monday after this run, just one spot away from the high of #43 she reached in May before her slide started to grow hair.
RISERS: Mona Barthel/GER & Mariana Duque/COL
...Barthel has been one of the most underrated and unrecognized players on tour for years. The defending champion this past week in Bastad, her run to the final -- which included wins over Kiki Bertens, Maryna Zanevska (double-bagel), Rebecca Peterson and Lara Arruabarrena -- gave her the chance to play for her fourth career title in five final appearances, and run her seasons-with-a-title streak to three. She lost to home favorite Johanna Larsson, but the week was still another example of the German's ability to jump out and put up a very good result with very little forewarning. The 25-year old was a pretty abysmal 6-17 for the season coming into this past week, with nine straight losses and without a match win on red clay since she won the Bastad title a year ago. In the latest edition of the Pan-American Games, 25-year old Duque added to her great success at the event. Already a three-time medalist ('07 singles and doubles Silvers, '11 doubles Bronze), the Colombian added the singles Gold medal this time with wins over Marcela Zacarias, Gabriela Dabrowski, #1-seeded Lauren Davis and Victoria Rodriguez in the final. She nearly added another, but lost in the Bronze Match of the Mixed doubles with Eduardo Struvay, coming up short against the Paraguayan duo of Veronica Cepede Royg & Diego Galeano.


SURPRISES: Andreea Mitu/ROU & Victoria Rodriguez/MEX
...Mitu's career year continues. 2015 had already seen the 23-year old Swarmette make her Fed Cup debut (def. Bouchard in Canada), set career singles and doubles ranking highs and make a run to the Roland Garros Round of 16 with wins over #11-seeded Karolina Pliskova and former champ Francesca Schiavone. Last week in Bucharest, she reached her first tour-level singles QF with victories over Annika Beck and Sorana Cirstea, as well as playing in her first WTA doubles final with Patricia Maria Tig. She'll reach yet another new career high at #68 in singles on Monday. At the Pan-American Games in Toronto, 20-year old Mexican Rodriguez was quite possibly THE story of the tennis competition even while she didn't walk away with any Gold medals. V-Rod isn't even the highest-ranked player (Marcela Zacarias is) in Mexico's growing pool of tennis talent, but she's been asserting herself of late with some good results, including winning four ITF singles titles since 2013. In Toronto, she pulled off wins over Sachia Vickery, Maria Fernanda Alvarez Teran, Carol Zhao and #2 Monica Puig. The only unseeded woman to reach the semis (the Top 3 seeds joined her), Rodriguez advanced to the Gold Medal match, losing to #3 Duque. She and Zacarias have been a very good doubles duo on the challenger level, as well, reaching twelve finals (winning eight) over the last fifteen months. The pair reached the Pan-Am Gold Medal match, too, after defeating #1-seeded Beatriz Haddad Maia/Paula Cristina Goncalves in a 3rd set 10-8 super tie-break in the semis. They fell to the all-Canadian team of Dabrowski/Zhao in the final in a 10-5 3rd set STB. Rodriguez's two-silver haul made her the only woman to win tennis medals in both singles and doubles last week.


VETERANS: Johanna Larsson/SWE & Maria Irigoyen/ARG
...Swede Larsson became the second 26-year old (w/ Teliana Pereira) to become a first-time tour singles champion in 2015 with her win in front of the home crowd in Bastad, becoming the first Swedish winner of the women's singles in nineteen years (Catarina Lindqvist in '86. though it should be noted the event was off the WTA schedule from 1991-08). Playing in her fourth WTA singles final (and third in Bastad, all in odd-numbered years -- 2011, '13 and '15), Larsson finished off her no-sets-lost week by defeating Mona Barthel 6-3/7-6(2), adding the win over the '14 defending champ to her earlier straight sets take downs of Richel Hogenkamp, Anna-Lena Friedsam, Barbora Strycova and Yulia Putintseva. Larsson won the doubles title, too, becoming the first woman to sweep both in an event in '15 as she won her second title this year with Kiki Bertens (Hobart). Meanwhile, in the Pan-American Games in Toronto, 28-year old Argentine Irigoyen took home a pair of medals. The 2011 Gold winner in the WD, she claimed the doubles Bronze with Paula Ormaechea this time when Haddad Maia/Goncalves awarded then a walkover in the Bronze Medal match. She also took home the Mixed doubles Gold in the inaugural competition at the PAG, as she and Guido Andreozzi defeated Canadians Gabriela Dabrowski & Philip Bester in the final.

COMEBACK: Polona Hercog/SLO
...sure, the week could have been even better for Hercog, considering she took an early two-break lead in the Bucharest semis against Anna Schmiedlova and then saw the wheels come off her day, barely winning another game. But the 24-year old world #87 still had her best week on tour since she won her second career title in Bastad three years ago. From 2010-12, the Slovene was a real up-and-coming player. She reached four tour finals during the stretch, winning back-to-back titles in Bastad (2011-12), pushing Venus Williams to three sets in Acapulco (2010) and reaching two finals in two weeks in '11 (Bastad & Palermo). She had four other semifinal results (including Charleston '12) and climbed as high #35 in 2011. She's managed to maintain a Top 100 year-end ranking since 2009, but those sort of results were getting quite small in her rear view mirror until last week. Her Bucharest SF run included victories over Tereza Smitkova, Patricia Maria Tig and Aleksandra Krunic. Speaking of, is there any player whose outward appearance is more opposite-ends-of-the-spectrum when it comes to big wins and losses than the Bracelet? I mean, she looks like her favorite pet was run over by a steamroller on a humid day in the shot where she's meeting Hercog at the net. But back to Hercog... she'll get a moderately good bump up to #78 on Monday, so maybe that Top 100 streak will remain in play until autumn.

FRESH FACE: Yulia Putintseva/KAZ
...after three previous tour-level QF results over the past two seasons, the 20-year old Kazakh finally battled her way into her maiden WTA semi final in Bastad. A week after reaching the final of the $100K challengerin Contrexville, Putintseva kept things flowing with wins over Tatjana Maria, Alize Lim and Klara Koukalova before falling to crowd favorite and eventual champ Larsson. She'll climb to a new best-ever rank of #70 on Monday.

DOWN: Samantha Stosur/AUS & Jana Cepelova/SVK
...Bastad seemed to be a potential big opportunity for Stosur, the #2 seed in an event where it was an open question whether #1 Serena Williams would be in town all week long (she wasn't), to maybe add a second singles title in a 2015 season that has otherwise been pretty dismal. But the Aussie went out in the 2nd Round to Lara Arruabarrena, in a straight sets loss that included a love 2nd set. Stosur lost a three-setter in another 2nd Round match to the Spaniard earlier this year in Charleston. With this defeat, Stosur has only advanced to the QF at one of her fifteen events this season... but that one time was when she won the title in Strasbourg right before Roland Garros. The Aussie ended 2014 with back-to-back finals in Beijing and Osaka, winning the title in her season-closing event. The 31-year old is currently ranked #23, the same spot where she finished the 2014 season. But with those points to defend in October, she's got some work to do if she's going to avoid her worst year-end ranking since 2008.

Meanwhile, as soon as things look up for Cepelova, they soon change. The Slovak pulled the upset over Simona Halep in the 1st Round at Wimbledon, only to lose in the 2nd to another Romanian, Monica Niculescu. After losing her opening match in a $100K challenger a week ago, the Slovak climbed back into the Top 100 and got wins in Bastad over Carina Witthoeft and Olga Govortsova to reach her first tour QF since last September in Hong Kong. Then, of course, Cepelova ended up retiring from her next match, bowing out to Arruabarrena down 6-3/5-2. Oh, Jana.

ITF PLAYER: Barbora Krejcikova/CZE
...the Czech had great junior doubles success as recently as two seasons ago. In 2013, she reached the finals of all three junior doubles slams, winning Roland Garros, Wimbledon and the U.S. Open with Katerina Siniakova (and performing a well-orchestrated on-court dance routine to celebrate). Since then, Siniakova has risen up the WTA singles rankings (#63 last week), while Krejcikova has lagged a bit behind. The Brno-born (just like her coach, Hall of Famer Jana Novotna), #165-ranked 19-year old took a nice step up this weekend, though, winning her biggest career title at the $50K challenger in Olomouc, Czech Republic. Her 3-6/6-4/7-6(5) win in the final over Czech veteran Petra Cetkovska gives Krejcikova nine career ITF singles titles, and she'll jump around twenty spots in the rankings to around #144-145 on Monday, within range of the career-high (#140) she achieved just last month.

JUNIOR STAR: Georgia Andreea Craciun/ROU
...the 16-year old Swarmette won her first-ever Grade 1 junior event in the Junior Linz Open. Just the #121-ranked girl, the 14-seeded Romanian knocked off the #11, #3 and #1 (Brit Emily Arbuthnutt) seeds to reach the final, where she defeated unseeded Ukrainian Anastasia Zarytska in a 3rd set tie-break to claim the title.

DOUBLES: Gabriela Dabrowski/Carol Zhao (CAN/CAN) & Oksana Kalashnikova/Demi Schuurs (GEO/NED)
...Dabrowski & Zhao were the lone Gold medal winners in tennis for the host nation at the Pan-American Games in Toronto, and are the only Canadian tennis players to ever stand atop the medal stand in the 64-year history of the sport in the Games. The unseeded duo defeated #2 Maria Irigoyen/Paula Ormaechea in the semis, then took out Mexico's unseeded pair of Victoria Rodriguez & Marcela Zacarias in the Gold Medal match. Dabrowski had a shot at a pair of Golds, but lost in the Mixed final with Philip Bester and had to settle for Silver.

In Bucharest, doubles "mercenaries" Kalashnikova and Schuurs teamed up for the first time and walked away with the title, spoiling the bid of the all-Swarmette duo of Mitu/Tig to win a crown for the home fans in the final. Of course, teaming with anyone and everyone -- and being successful at it -- is nothing new for these two. 21-year old Dutch Schuurs has won two '15 tour titles (Katowice w/ Ysaline Bonaventure) with two different partners, as well as fifteen ITF crowns during her career with thirteen others (not to mention reaching finals with three more). Of course, that's nothing compared to the slightly-older Georgian. Kalashnikova has now won three WTA titles and twenty-three on the ITF circuit, partnering eighteen different co-champions (and reaching finals with nine others). Of course, Schuurs has a shot to surpass those numbers by the time she's Kalashnikova's age. After all, she's been doing this for a while, right from the start of her career. In 2011, she reached the doubles final of all four junior slams with four different partners, winning the Australian and U.S. Open titles. On occasion, she'll even slip over to the singles side with some success. She hasn't played a singles match in '15, but Schuurs won her first and only ITF singles title during the 2014 season.


Martina speaks.

And look who's back! Or about to be.

1. Bastad Final - Larsson d. Barthel
The last woman to sweep the singles and doubles at a tour event was Mirjana Lucic-Baroni last September in Quebec City.
2. Bastad 2nd Rd. - Arruabarrena d. Stosur 7-6(5)/6-0
Bastad QF - Arruabarrena d. Cepelova 6-3/5-2 ret.
Arruabarrena hasn't risen to the level of countrywoman Garbine Muguruza, but the Spaniard has been putting up good results in 2015 (including a star turn in Fed Cup). In Bastad she knocked off Swedish vet Sofia Arvidsson, #2-seed Stosur (backing up her Charleston win over the Aussie), and had nearly beaten Cepelova when the Slovak finally retired before losing to Barthel in Arruabarrena's second semifinal of the season. She'll rise to #75 on Monday, not far off the career-best of #70 that she reached two seasons ago.

3. Pan-Am Games Final - Duque d. V.Rodriguez
While the continent's women's tennis fortunes have improved of late, there still isn't any sort of confirmed landscape-changing young talent that might prop of the standing of South America. Brazil's Teliana Pereira (at around #80, and a tour title-winner in '15) is the highest-ranked woman from the continent, while Duque (#90) is the only other player in the Top 100. Still, a Pan-American Gold is nice.

4. Bast 2nd Rd. - Peterson d. Siniakova
Siniakova served up 5-3 in the 1st, and had a set point at 5-4. The Czech saved two Peterson match points at 5-4 in the 2nd set, but the Swede took the tie-break after eight of the first ten points featured service breaks.
5. Pan-Am Bronze Match - Puig d. Davis
Puig defeats the #1 seeded Bannerette to make it back-to-back Pan-Am medal runs. The Puerto Rican won the Silver in 2011.

6. $25K Tianjin Final - Duan Yingying d. Wang Qiang
...4-6/7-6(2)/3-0 ret.
The Wimbledon 1st Round conqueror of Genie Bouchard, Duan took her eleventh career ITF crown with a victory over her countrywoman.
7. $50K Stockton SF - Mestach d. Date-Krumm
The 21-year old Waffle takes out the 44-year old vet from Japan.
8. $50K Stockton QF - Marand d. Oudin
Oudin won two matches during her QF run in Stockton, her best result in the three events (a combined 4-3) since her return to tennis after various medical procedures.

HM- $50K Stockton Doubles Final - Jamie Loeb/Sanaz Marand d. Kaitlyn Christian/Danielle Lao
In California, a North Carolina Tar Heel (NCAA singles champ Loeb) teamed up with another former UNC star to take out a pair of former USC Trojans to grab their third title as a duo over the last two seasons. Loeb was announced as a member of the field of eight who'll compete for the Billie Jean King Collegiate Invitational event held during the U.S. Open. She won the title at the inaugural competition last year.

Such an oh-so-Maria Instagram post.

Motion. Rotation. #FrankGehry #Architecture

A photo posted by Maria Sharapova (@mariasharapova) on


Nothing to do with tennis, but so what?

1. Bastad 1st Rd. - Serena Williams d. Bonaventure
Serena lives up to her commitment and shows up in Sweden. Oh, and welcome to your WTA debut, Ysaline.
2. Bastad 2nd Rd. - Koukalova walkover Serena Williams
and then Serena was off, not shockingly, to "get treatment" on her injured elbow. It's her third walkover exit this season, with just one on-court defeat and forty wins. Meanwhile, not long afterward...

Hey, you win twenty-one slams, you deserve some time on the beach.
3. Bucharest SF - Anna Schmiedlova d. Hercog
Hercog held a double-break lead at 4-1 in the 1st, but Schmiedlova won five straight games to take the set, and nine of ten to take a commanding lead at 4-1 in the 2nd, setting up her rematch in the final with Rio conqueror Errani.
4. Bucharest Final - Anna Schmiedlova d. Errani
Schmiedlova led 5-2 in the 1st set, with a set point at 5-3 before being forced into a tie-break and winning the 1:13 set. These two are the second pair of finalists to face off for TWO titles in 2015. Can you remember who the other two are? The answer is in the Lists section. Hint: one seems to love to play on the big stage, while the other, umm... not so much.

5. Istanbul Q1 - Sara Tomic d. Kristyna Pliskova
17-year old Tomic continues to give reason to think of her as something other than "just" Bernard's little sister, with her win over recent Wimbledon achiever Pliskova (3rd Rd. - outlasting Karolina). The Aussie is actually 17-5 in pro matches this year, reaching two challenger finals and winning a title. Naturally, though, a quick search with her name on Twitter today didn't produce many congratulations for a good win, but was instead filled with snide remarks about her weight (nothing new, of course), how embarrassed Pliskova should be for losing to her, how now there will soon be TWO Tomics out on the town, questions about why she deserved a WC into the Q-rounds to begin with, etc. This is just an outside view, of course, but you hear so much about how "great" Aussie tennis "fans" are, but all I ever seem to see or hear are complaints from within about how their young players AREN'T this or AREN'T that, do THIS too much or not enough of THAT, don't win the RIGHT way, etc. And I'm not even going into how Vika Azarenka -- and others -- are often mistreated in Melbourne if they don't "tow the company line" and play by "the rules," sometimes to an embarrassing degree (Hint: "Whack-a-Vika"). It makes you consider that maybe Damir Dokic, while still often bat-bleep-crazy, was right about SOME things all those years ago. On another note, though -- good work from Lleyton Hewitt in Davis Cup this weekend.

Mom would be proud of the amount of pink I wore today #espys #momapproved

A photo posted by Victoria Azarenka (@vichka35) on

Gewd catch ??

A video posted by Daria Gavrilova (@daria_gav) on

Katowice - Anna Schmiedlova (SVK, age 20, #67)
Bogota - Teliana Pereira (BRA, age 26, #130)
's-Hertogenbosch - Camila Giorgi (ITA, age 23, #35)
Nottingham - Ana Konjuh (CRO, age 17, #87)
Eastbourne - Belinda Bencic (SUI, age 18, #30)
Bastad - Johanna Larsson (SWE, age 26, #72)

**2015 WTA FINALS**
4 - Serena Williams (4-0)
4 - Karolina Pliskova (1-3)
3 - Simona Halep (3-0)
3 - Angelque Kerber (3-0)
3 - Timea Bacsinszky (2-1)
3 - Maria Sharapova (2-1)
3 - Caroline Wozniacki (1-2)
3 - Carla Suarez-Navarro (0-2+L)

3 - Angelque Kerber, GER (Green Clay, Red Clay, Grass)
3 - Serena Williams, USA (Hard, Red Clay, Grass)
2 - Petra Kvitova, CZE (Hard, Red Clay)
2 - Maria Sharapova, RUS (Hard, Red Clay)

**WTA FINALS (active) - 2012-15**
31 - Serena Williams (29-2)
22 - Maria Sharapova (11-11)
17 - Victoria Azarenka (9-8)
15 - Simona Halep (11-4)
14 - Angelique Kerber (6-8)
13 - SARA ERRANI (6-7)
12 - Petra Kvitova (9-3)
12 - Aga Radwanska (7-5)
12 - Caroline Wozniacki (5-7)

Hobart: Heather Watson, GBR
Bogota: Teliana Pereira, BRA
Bucharest: Anna Schmiedlova, SVK
Bastad: Johanna Larsson, SWE

2 - Bacsinszky vs. Garcia (Acapulco/Monterrey; TB 2-0)
2 - Errani vs. A.Schmiedlova (Rio/Bucharest; 1-1)

15 - SERENA WILLIAMS [walkover]
15 - Timea Bacsinszky (lost to S.Williams)
14 - Simona Halep (lost to S.Williams)
12 - Serena Williams [walkover]
12 - Serena Williams (lost to Kvitova)
11 - Maria Sharapova (lost to S.Williams)
11 - Angelique Kerber (lost to Stosur)
10 - Anna Schmiedlova (lost to Svitolina)

Hopman Cup - #7 Genie Bouchard (team exhibition event)
Hopman Cup - #5 Aga Radwanska (team exhibtion event)
Indian Wells - #3 Simona Halep (walkover)
Madrid - #4 Petra Kvitova
Rome - #65 Christina McHale (walkover)
Bastad - #105 Klara Koukalova (walkover)

Auckland - Ana Ivanovic (lost to V.Williams)
Miami - Serena Williams (def. Suarez-Navarro)
Bastad - Mona Barthel (lost to Larrson)

Marrakech - Timea Babos, HUN (L=W)
Roland Garros - Lucie Safarova, CZE (L=W)
Bastad - Johanna Larsson, SWE (W=W)

Miami - Serena Williams, USA (W)
Charleston - Madison Keys, USA (L)
Stuttgart - Angelique Kerber, GER (W)
Prague - Karolina Pliskova, CZE (W)
Prague - Lucie Hradecka, CZE (L)
Strasbourg - Kristina Mladenovic, FRA (L)
Bastad - Johanna Larsson, SWE (W)
Shenzhen - Liang/Y.Wang, CHN (L)
Pattaya - Tamarine Tanasugarn, THA (L)
Antwerp - Mestach/Van Uytvanck, BEL (L)
Prague - Katerina Siniakova, CZE (W)
Prague - Eva Hrdinova, CZE (L)
Nottingham - Rae/Smith, GBR (L)
Bastad - Johanna Larsson, SWE (W)
Bucharest - Mitu/Tig, ROU (L)

Auckland - Venus Williams, USA (F-Wozniacki)
[Indian Wells - Simona Halep, ROU = SF w/o S.Williams]
Bogota - Teliana Pereira, BRA (SF-Svitolina)
Stuttgart - Angelique Kerber, GER (2r-Sharapova)
Madrid - Petra Kvitova, CZE (SF-S.Williams)
[Pan-Am Games - Mariana Duque, COL = SF-Davis]
Bucharest - Anna Schmiedlova, SVK (F-Errani)

Auckland - Venus Williams, USA (F-Ivanovic)
Sydney - Petra Kvitova, CZE (SF-Pironkova)
Katowice - Anna Schmiedlova, SVK (QF-Cornet)
Charleston - Angelique Kerber, GER (SF-Petkovic)
Stuttgart - Angelique Kerber, GER (2r-Sharapova)
Strasbourg - Samantha Stosur, AUS (1r-Puig)
Bastad - Johanna Larsson, SWE (F-Barthel)

2003 Milagros Sequera, VEN
2007 Milagros Sequera, VEN
2011 Irina Falconi, USA
2015 Mariana Duque, COL
2003 Sarah Taylor, USA
2007 Mariana Duque, COL
2011 Monica Puig, PUR
2015 Victoria Rodriguez, MEX
2003 Kristina Brandi, PUR & Ashley Cargill, USA
2007 Betina Jozami, ARG
2011 Christina McHale, USA
2015 Monica Puig, PUR
AMONG OTHER GOLD WINNERS: Althea Gibson (1959), Maria Bueno (1963), Pam Shriver (1991)

Robin Anderson, UCLA
Brooke Austin, Florida
Julia Elbaba, Virginia
Lauren Herring, Georgia
Josie Kuhlman, Florida
Jamie Loeb, North Carolina ('14 BJK/'15 NCAA champ)
Maegan Manasse, California
[TBA wild card]

You know, Nike has a little bit of skill with this marketing thing...

14 Final: Petkovic d. Rogers
14 Doubles Final: Pliskova/Pliskova d. Klepac/Torro-Flor
15 Top Seeds: Errani/Stosur

#1 Errani d. Arruabarrena
#7 A.Schmiedlova d. #2 Stosur
#7 A.Schmiedlova d. #1 Errani

...hey, the first two were pretty good. Why not a third final between these two?

14 Final: Wozniacki d. Vinci
14 Doubles Final: Doi/Svitolina d. Kalasnikova/Kania
15 Top Seeds: V.Williams/Svitolina

#1 V.Williams d. #5 Giorgi
#3 Jankovic d. #2 Svitolina
#1 V.Williams d. #3 Jankovic

...can JJ's Wimbledon momentum continue?

And, of course, last but not least, congratulations to Amelie Mauresmo for her enshrinement into the Tennis Hall of Fame this weekend, even if she wasn't actually able to attend the ceremony herself.

All right, well I guess it's time to say all for-

Sheesh, Caro. Really? (Sigh.)

All right. NOW it is.

All for now.


Blogger Diane said...

That Bucharest trophy looks like it was made by minions working in The Radwanska's Craft Shop. I actually like it; it looks like you had to kick some serious butt to get it. Schmiedy's backhand is killer. Those were both really good finals today.

Sun Jul 19, 08:54:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Todd.Spiker said...

Ha! I noticed from photos that that's the same trophy that Barthel won last year, so I don't know how long it's looked like that.

Hiding in plain sight. ;)

It'd be interesting to see what would happen if Schmiedlova/Errani III takes place in Bad Gastein.

Sun Jul 19, 09:55:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Eric said...

I was thinkin about what you said about Djokovic...and the washington Post article.

I think a big reason he isn't appreciated is because he's compared to the greatness of federer and nadal. I just think back to when Serena Williams had 8 major titles. It was still the most among active players...but she wasn't really respected bc players before her had done so much.

We live in a world where people are stingy with giving when it comes to djokovic, it's easy to say, "Well he's not where Federer is...or even Nadal." The recency of their achievements doesn't help him either.

But Djokovic's current excellence should definitely be applauded...even if his career resume doesn't match others yet.

Diane's right...what's the point in comparing...everything has their own life to live...and the environmental circumstances are individual. I mean, timing is only one factor and it has so many hidden and far-reaching consequences. In another era, Roddick would have had multiple WImbledon titles.

Tue Jul 21, 02:27:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Eric said...

The "Biggest Surprises" link was a bit unexpected... I've never seen the WTA website call out a player like that (Bouchard)...They're usually a lot more optimistic.

Wed Jul 22, 08:28:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Todd.Spiker said...

Well, Courtney Nguyen ( is doing much of the writing on the WTA site's news section now, so I suspect there will be a little less "company line" than in the past. I least I'd hope. It's a great improvement. :)

Wed Jul 22, 01:46:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Eric said...

You probably already saw this:

Wed Jul 22, 03:46:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Eric said...

Yes, I saw that Courtney left SI Tennis. It was really obvious today when this post came out:

Roberta Vinci will face Alexandra Rybarikova in Istanbul Cup quarterfinals.

I was like, does Magdalena have a sister?

Wed Jul 22, 06:46:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Todd.Spiker said...

On the link: yeah, I understand that opinion. But all players have their fans and are beloved by a certain number of people, especially when they're from a small (and new, for that matter) nation with athletes making names for themselves and the country around the world.

But I think my point, as well as others, is more of a long term viewpoint because down the road, when the era is remembered, people are always going to talk more about the players that grabbed their attention and/or were more talked about. I think many of us can see him maybe never getting the overall notoriety later if it isn't pressed for now, no matter how deserved it may be.

For example, I don't think Hana Mandlikova gets enough attention for what she did during the Navratilova/Evert era. Namely, while those two were winning 36 slams, she won four herself, including nearly winning a Career Slam. She won the AO, RG and US (defeating both Chris and Martina to do it), and lost a pair of Wimbledon finals (to, of course, Chris and Martina). She can't help but be overshadowed.

Unless they were seen as "bigger than life" during their careers, it's often too easy for even some of the most accomplished athlete's achievements to be "forgotten." Once they're out of sight, they can quickly be out of mind, as well.

Wed Jul 22, 10:42:00 PM EDT  

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