Sunday, March 04, 2018

A Month of Rising Cream, and Curdled Milk

It's a given that every month on the tennis tour will see "the cream of the crop" rise to the top...

But the Tennis Gods have made it so that when that happens, an equal amount of talent on the opposite end of the success spectrum must therefore "curdle." It's just the way things are on the WTA tour.

Sell Art Online

Of course, come a month (or two) from now, the cream may have become curdled, and the previously curdled milk may miraculously repair itself and rise to the top. *That's* just the way things are on the Most Interesting Tour in the World, too. So, embrace the madness.

Now, about what's happened since the end of the Australian Open...

1. Petra Kvitova, CZE
...the Czech's reign of feel-good, good-natured, "Pojd!"-laced, dominance (through thick and thin, as things got progressively more difficult as the month wore on) continued in Saint Petersburg, Prague and Doha. Through it all, she's gone 13-0, notched six Top 10 wins (three over the Top 4), returned to the Top 10 herself *and* knocked two players (Mladenovic and Goerges) out of the Top 10 by beating them.

2. Elina Svitolina, UKR
...even while she's still looking forlornly through the slam glass, Svitolina surely knows how to win on the "regular" tour. She picked up her second title of the season in Dubai, defending her title and improved her season record to 14-2. She's the only player currently ranked in the Top 5 to have never reached #1, as well as the only to have never reached a slam final.
3. Dasha Kasatkina, RUS
...the Russian put on another pre-spring fling over the past month, going 7-3 (after a 1-3 start to '18) and for the third straight year posting eye-opening results in the season's opening months. She reached the Saint Petersburg semis and Dubai final (after saving 5 MP) while posting wins over the likes of Wozniacki, Muguruza, Konta and Radwanska.
4. German Fed Cup Team
...Playing at home for a fourth straight tie, defending Fed Cup finalist Belarus was the decided favorite against a German "B" team that didn't include the likes of Angelique Kerber, Julia Goerges or Andrea Petkovic (or even Sabine Lisicki). But Germany, in new Captain Jens Gerlach's first tie in the position, transformed into 2018's 1st Round Cinderellas, defeating 2017's version, who'd knocked off 2016's originals (the Dutch) *last* February. Riding wins from Tatjana Maria (in her first tie since 2011), Antonia Lottner (def. '17 BLR star Aliaksandra Sasnovich in her debut debut FC match) and a clinching doubles victory from Maria & longtime stalwart Anna-Lena Groenefeld for a 3-2 win, overcoming a come-on-everyone-get-on-my-back-and-I'll-try-to-carry-us-all-over-the-finish-line performance from (almost) Wonder Woman Aryna Sabalenka.

5. Garbine Muguruza, ESP
...still working her way into the new season, Muguruza made significant progress this past month. After starting the year 2-3, she reached the Doha final and Dubai semis, post a 5-2 record. She went 2-0 vs. Caroline Garcia, and in her two losses when three sets to Kvitova and held 3 MP vs. Kasatkina.
HM- Simona Halep, ROU
...still nursing injuries (an ankle, as well as a separate foot ailment) from her Swarmette Warrior AO final run, Halep still managed to show dominant form in Doha en route to reaching the semifinals before pulling out of the event due to continued (and increasing) pain. Standing at 14-1 on the season, Halep enters the spring U.S. hard court swing having regained the top ranking that she briefly lost after falling to Caroline Wozniacki in the Australian Open final.


1. Kristina Mladenovic, FRA: putting the Pastry Fed Cup team on her back, Mladenovic ended her 15-match losing streak by going 2-0 in singles vs. Belgium (def. AO semifinalist Elise Mertens in the key match-up) and teaming with Amandine Hesse to win the deciding doubles and return France to this spring's semifinals
2. Ash Barty, AUS: Barty was one of the two (w/ Mladenovic) women to have a hand in all three live points in a 3-2 victory, leading Australia to a WG II win over an upstart Ukrainian team led by a 15-year old. She and Casey Dellacqua took the deciding doubles to clinch.
3. Petra Kvitova, CZE: Kvitova returned to Fed Cup play in the 1st Round tie against Switzerland, having lost four straight FC matches in 2015-16. Coming off her Saint Petersburg title run, she went 2-0 on an indoor hard court, powering the Czech Maidens to a tenth straight semifinal appearance.
4. Alona Ostapenko/Anastasija Sevastova, LAT: both lost singles matches, but twice teamed in a "make-up" efforts in deciding doubles matches, including a win over Serbia in the Europe/Africa I zone Promotional Playoff
5. Anna-Lena Groenefeld/Tatjana Maria, GER: playing with a "B"-team vs. '17 FC finalist Belarus, the Germans pulled the upset in Minsk, finishing off with ALG/Maria winning a tight deciding doubles in the 3rd set of 2:29 match, converting on their fourth MP
HM- Venus Williams, USA: back for another FC go-around, Venus won two matches (and played her 1000th "official" career match) to lead the 2017 FC champion Bannerettes back to the semis

1. Gaby Dabrowski, CAN: the AO Mixed champion entered the doubles Top 10 with her second '18 WD title, teaming with Alona Ostapenko to win in Doha

2. Alona Ostapenko, LAT: while Latvian Thunder hasn't been all that loud so far this season, she's often rebounded in doubles. After an early singles exit in Doha, she teamed with Dabrowski to take the title. A week earlier, she'd joined with Sevastova to help Team Latvia recover from upset singles losses from *both* countrywomen.
3. Timea Bacsinszky/Vera Zvonareva, SUI/RUS: the high points (so far) of both vets' comebacks has been their unexpected title run as a duo in Saint Petersburg

1. Maria Camila Osorio Serrano, COL: the Colombian picked her third and fourth 2018 Grade 1 titles over the past month, and put together a season-opening junior-level winning streak of 24 matches (26 straight dating back to '17)
2. Leylah Annie Fernandez/CAN: the Canadian (jr. #84) made a big leap by claiming the Grade A event Porto Alegre, Brazil. The 15-year old knocked off the likes of Bannerettes Alexa Noel and Gabriella Price en route to the final, where she defeated Dane Clara Tauson in straight sets.
3. Lenka Stara, SVK: the Slovak claimed her first career Grade 1 title at the Yeltsin Cup, knocking off five straight Hordettes on their home soil to take the crown
4. Olga Danilovic, SRB: the 17-year old went 3-0 (def. Sevastova, Shapatava & Shinikova) in Fed Cup play, nearly leading the Serbian FC Bracelettes to a promotion out of Europe/Africa I (losing a deciding doubles match vs. Latvia in the Promotional Playoff)
5. Gabriella Price, USA: the 14-year old grabbed her first career Grade 1 title in Ecuador, taking the title without losing a set

1. Rebecca Marino, CAN: the Canadian returned from a five-year sabbatical and ran off 19 straight wins, winning three straight challenger titles in Antalya, Turkey
2. Andreea Amalia Rosca, ROU: after winning a pair of December challengers, the 18-year old Swarmette has grabbed three more in 2018, begining the season on a 21-2 tear. She's 40-5 since mid-November, and has improved her ranking by over 450 spots in the last four months.
3. Gabriella Taylor, GBR: the British teen claimed a pair of $25K crowns in Australia
4. Madison Brengle, USA: Brengle hasn't gotten off to a quick start on the WTA tour in '18, but she picked up the season's first $100K title in Midland, dropping just sixteen total games in six wins en route to the crown
5. Marta Kostyuk, UKR: aside from all the other things she's done in the season's opening weeks, the 15-year also picked up a career-best $60K challenger win in Burnie, Australia immediately after her surprise AO run

RISERS: Timea Babos/HUN, Alison Van Uytvanck/BEL and Naomi Osaka/JPN
SURPRISES: Georgina Garcia Perez/Fanny Stollar (ESP/HUN), Kateryna Kozlova/UKR and Wang Yafan/CHN
VETERANS: Julia Goerges/GER, Angelique Kerber/GER and Lesia Tsurenko/UKR
COMEBACKS: Kristina Mladenovic/FRA, Sara Errani/ITA and Sabine Lisicki/GER
FRESH FACES: CiCi Bellis/USA, Elena Rybakina/RUS and Anna Blinkova/RUS
JUNIOR STARS: Clara Tauson/DEN, Alexa Noel/USA and Ana Geller/ARG
DOUBLES: Angel Chan/Yang Zhaoxuan (TPE/CHN) and Tatjana Maria/Heather Watson (GER/GBR)
ITF: Kaitlyn Christian/Sabrina Santamaria (USA/USA), Yanina Wickmayer/BEL and Tamara Zidansek/SLO
DOWN: Belinda Bencic/SUI, Latisha Chan/Andrea Sestini-Hlavackova (TPE/CZE) and Alona Ostapenko/LAT (singles)
MOST IMPROVED: Viktoria Kuzmova/SVK, Veronica Cepede Royg/PAR and Magda Linette/POL

RISERS: Veronica Cepede Royg/PAR and Aryna Sabalenka/BLR
SURPRISES: Deborah Chiesa/ITA, Ankita Raina/IND and Abigail Tere-Apisah/PNG
VETERANS: Tatjana Maria/GER and Johanna Konta/GBR
COMEBACKS: Sara Errani/ITA and Magdalena Rybarikova/SVK
FRESH FACES: Antonia Lottner/GER and Marta Kostyuk/UKR
JUNIOR STARS: Olga Danilovic/SRB and Emiliana Arango/ECU
DOUBLES: Miyu Kato/Makoto Ninomiya (JPN) and Lesley Kerkhove/Demi Schuurs (NED)
DOWN: Lara Arruabarrena/ESP, Dasha Gavrilova/AUS & Aliaksanda Sasnovich/BLR
MOST IMPROVED: Viktoria Kuzmova/SVK and Richel Hogenkamp/NED

1. THE MONTH OF PETRA: Kvitova wins 13 straight matches, leading the Czechs back to the Fed Cup semis and claiming titles in Saint Petersburg and Doha, resurrecting the gasps of awe and possibilities of a "Petra era" first experienced during her SW19 runs in 2011 and '14.
2. AT LONG LAST, IT'S KIKI: Despite riding a 15-match losing streak, and heading an inexperienced and (mostly) inconsequential group of additional Pastries, Kristina Mladenovic has a hand in all three of France's points in 3-2 Fed Cup 1st Round victory over Belgium.

3. ELI DOES IT AGAIN: Elina Svitolina defends her Dubai title, dropping just one set and defeating Angelique Kerber (SF) and Dasha Kasatkina (F) as she improved her career record in finals to 11-2
4. HOLDING OUT FOR A HERO: Ash Barty fills the Aussie Fed Cup tennis vacuum, exorcising a few Australian FC demons on home soil by having a hand in all three points in a 3-2 WG II win over Ukraine. She's now a combined 9-2 (4-1/5-1) in her FC career.
5. THE FIELD (save for one) FEARS THE KASATKINA: Dasha Kasatkina saves five MP over two matches -- 2 vs. Konta in the 2nd Rd., 3 vs. Muguruza in the SF -- to reach her third career tour final, making her the youngest '18 WTA singles finalist (at 20), and (finally) crack the Top 20 for the first time in her career.
HM- THE (NEW) QUEEN OF MEXICO?: A year after dropping no sets and just 19 games en route to the title, Lesia Tsurenko won ten of eleven sets while successfully defending her Acapulco crown. The 28-year old Ukrainian knocked off the #2 (Mladenovic) and #3 (Gavrilova) seeds, then overcame a 7-5/4-2 deficit vs. Stefanie Voegele in the final.


1. Dubai 2nd Rd. - Dasha Kasatkina def. Johanna Konta
Over the course of three hours, Kasatkina and Konta tested each other. The Brit won most of the early battles, staving off nine straight BP chances in the first two sets before the Russian finally broke her late in the 2nd. Kasatkina saved two MP, won an 8-6 TB to force a 3rd set, and eventually pulled away as her defense and Konta's UE total (63 to Dasha's 34) ultimately turned things in the Hordette's favor. Kasatkina converted just four of fourteen BP chances on the day, but it was enough to extend what turned out to be an epic week of survival, as she would go on to save 3 MP vs. Garbine Muguruza in the semis and reach the final.
2. Doha Final - Petra Kvitova def. Garbine Muguruza
In their first meeting in a final, Kvitova staged vs. the Spaniard what was her last of many comebacks during the week. Muguruza raced to a 5-0 lead in the 1st while the Czech was trying to find her serve, as she fired at just a 48% clip (vs. 75% for Garbi) in the set. While she continuously faced danger on serve for the rest of the match, she *always* found a way to prevail. She saved BP and held for 2-1 and 3-2 leads in the 2nd, broke to go up 4-2, then saved BP again in game #7 en route to evening the match with a 6-3 set win. Kvitova improved her serve percentage to 68% in the 2nd, and out-hit Muguruza 16-4 in winners. In the 3rd, it was a similar story. The Czech saved BP for a hold for 2-2, broke Muguruza a game later, then saved BP again in game #6 on her way to finally putting the Spaniard away to pick up her second straight title and 13th straight victory.

3. Doha SF - Petra Kvitova def. Caroline Wozniacki
The Czech and the Dane tangled for 2:35, trading off attempts in the 2nd and 3rd sets to serve out the match. First, Wozniacki served up 6-3/5-4 (suffering a love break), then 6-5, in the 2nd. Kvitova won a TB to force a 3rd set, where she held from 15/30 (even w/ two DF, of the eleven she had on the day) for 4-4, broke a game later, and served for the match at 5-4. She was broken by the Dane, but then broke back a game later and finally served out the match. The win ended Wozniacki's 12-match semifinal unbeaten streak (it's the first time she failed in an attempt to reach a final since the 2016 U.S. Open vs. Kerber).
4. Doha QF - Caroline Wozniacki def. Angelique Kerber
Wozniacki won a rare match over Kerber in which the German dropped the opening set (she'd been 4-1 in '18, having held MP in her one previous loss vs. Halep in the AO semis), denying her opponent's multiple opportunities to turn the match in her favor. Kerber served for the 1st set, and later served up 1-0, 40/love in the 3rd, only to drop serve. Serving at 3-4, the German was broken again after leading 30/love and reaching GP.
5. Fed Cup Americas I Promotional Playoff Match #2 - Veronica Cepede Royg/PAR def. Beatriz Haddad Maia/BRA
Cepede Royg and Haddad Maia saw their match suspended with the Brazilian leading 4-3 in the 1st set. Hours later, after day had turned into night, Haddad took a late break lead in the 3rd, only to see VCR break back and force a deciding TB (with a rule change, the long, drawn out final sets in FC play are now history because, you know, who wants drama?). The Paraguayan held triple MP at 6-3, only to see Haddad save all three and hold three MP of her own. The Brazilian DF'd on #3 up 9-8, leading to VCR finally securing the win and clinching the tie victory on MP #4 to take the breaker 11-9, ending a match that lasted 3:20 between the lines, but much longer when you factor in the rain delay.

6t. Fed Cup World Group II Match #2 - Magdalena Rybarikova/SVK def. Anna Kalinskaya/RUS 5-7/6-3/6-4
Rybarikova only played one match on FC weekend, but it was a doozy. With SVK already down 1-0 against a Hordette team that arrived in Bratislava with a combined total of one FC singles win in their careers, the prospect of having to stage a comeback from 0-2 down looked very real. Kalinskaya, in her FC singles debut, led the match 7-5/3-1, only to see Rybarikova run off five straight games to force a 3rd set, where the Russian took a break lead at 4-3. At that point, Rybarikova's medical timeout took her off court for treatment on a back injury, while Kalinskaya stayed on court for a leg massage. When the Slovak veteran returned, the momentum permanently swung in her favor. She broke for 4-4, held from love/30 down, and then broke the teenager again to steal the match, save the day, and set the tone for the sort of effort it was going to take to win this tie. The 2:22 match was Rybarikova's first FC singles win since 2008. On Sunday, Viktoria Kuzmova's first career FC win clinched Slovakia's first ever win over Russia.

Fed Cup World Group II Match #4 - Viktoria Kuzmova/SVK def. Anastasia Potapova/RUS 3-6/6-3/6-4
of course, it took a bit of sweating to get there. Kuzmova may very well be the future of SVK Fed Cup, but after losing 4 & 2 to Natalia Vikhlyantseva in Match #1, then falling down a set vs. 16-year old Potapova in Match #4, things weren't looking particularly good for her in her debut FC singles weekend. But the 19-year old pulled her big game together and staged a comeback against Russian Captain Myskina's "substitute Anastasia," making her first FC victory a truly historic one, ending her nation's winless streak vs. the Hordettes with an epic forehand put-away.

8. Fed Cup 1st Round Match #5 - Anna-Lena Groenefeld/Tatjana Maria (GER) def. Aryna Sabalenka/Lidziya Marozava
Teaming for the first time since 2011, ALG/Maria finished off Germany's upset of Belarus in Minsk by taking the deciding doubles, saving a BP in the final game and finally winning on MP #4. Germany's reward? The Czechs in the semifinals.
HM- Taipei City 2nd Rd. - Magda Linette def. Johanna Larsson
In 3:08, Linette and Larsson shared a total of nine MP, with Linette finally winning on her fifth. She'd led 4-1, twice served for the win and held four MP in the 2nd only to see Larsson force a TB and win it, then Linette staged her own comeback from 5-3 down and saved four Larsson MP in the 3rd to force another TB, where *she* finally won.

1. Dubai SF - Dasha Kasatkina def. Garbine Muguruza
After going 3:00 (and saving 2 MP) vs. Johanna Konta earlier in the week, Kasatkina went "just 2:30" in this one, staging another comeback win despite being down a break twice in the 2nd set. Four straight breaks of serve led into the start of the TB, where the Russian started with a DF before then winning a 38-shot rally and saving three MP, including one with a successful replay challenge. She took the breaker 13-11 to force a 3rd. After failing to close out the win, Muguruza then "drifted" toward the finish, dropping serve to open the set, committing too many errors and ultimately notching just a single game in the deciding stanza.
2. Taipei City 1st Rd. - Sabine Lisicki def. Zhang Yuxuan
Sure, it was #246 vs. #360, but it was Lisicki's first match back from her latest injury (knee), and she had to battle back from 5-1 down, and double MP, in the 3rd set to get the win en route to what turned out to be a season-opening semifinal result.
3. Acapulco 2nd Rd. - Sloane Stephens def. Arantxa Rus
One round after polishing off her winning touch with her first win (after going 0-8) since her U.S. Open triumph, Stephens had to prove that she still wanted it enough to fight for it. She did, overcoming Rus serving for the match at 5-4 in the 2nd, then saving a MP down 6-5 in the TB.
4. Acapulco Final - Lesia Tsurenko def. Stefanie Voegele
Having won sixteen straight sets (and led 5-0 when her opponent retired in another) over a two-year span in Acapulco, Tsurenko dropped the opening set in the '18 final vs. first-time tour finalist Voegele, and trailed 7-5/4-2. She broke the Swiss and served for the 2nd set at 5-4, only to see her opponent get back on serve and eventually get within three points of the title. But the Ukrainian took a 7-2 2nd set TB, then took a 3-1 lead in the 3rd. Again, Voegele broke to get back on serve in game #5, but Tsurenko turned it on late to successfull defend her title.
5. Fed Cup 1st Round Match #2 - CoCo Vandeweghe/USA def. Richel Hogenkamp/NED
Hogenkamp had Vandeweghe, seeking her thirteenth consecutive FC win in her first outing since her early loss in Melbourne, on the ropes. After blowing a 4-2 lead in the 1st with a bushel of DF, Vandeweghe fell behind 6-4/2-0, leading to, well, you know.

The deficit increased to 3-1 before she turned things around. After failing to serve out the 2nd at 5-4, she won the TB 8-6 with a match-leveling ace, and then finally found her form in the 3rd. Still, the Belgian out-pointed her 111-110 in the match. But it's just another experience in Vandeweghe's long and winding FC journey, which now includes having the Williams Sisters cheer her on from the sidelines. "I was a junior hitter, a bench partner and then a player. I've worked my way up and to have them behind you, it gives you goosebumps," she said.
6. Budapest 2nd Rd. - Zhang Shuai def. Jana Cepelova
Cepelova got off to a quick start as she dominated the first set and a half, winning the final four games to close out the 1st, then going up a break in the 2nd, holding two MP. But Zhang got things to a TB, where she went up 4-0 and forced a 3rd set. There, she broke the Slovak's serve three times, finishing off the second of her first back-to-back victories this season.
7t. Dubai Q3 - Sara Errani def. Aryna Sabalenka 6-2/1-6/7-6(4)
Budapest Q1 - Roberta Vinci def. Anna Kalinskaya 3-6/6-4/7-6(3)
this could very well be the last time we see two original members of the Italian Quartet come back from MP down to win in the same week. Errani impressively staged a comeback from 4-1 and 5-3 down in the 3rd vs. Sabalenka, who served for the match and held a MP at 5-4. In Budapest, aside from celebrating her 35th birthday courtside with a big honking "candle"-topped cake, Vinci saved a MP at 5-4 in the 3rd vs. Kalinskaya, winning and then reaching the MD with a 2:30 Q2 victory over Vera Lapko. While Errani topped one Belarusian, Vinci then lost to the other, falling to Aliaksandra Sasnovich in the 1st Round.

1. Saint Petersburg 2nd Rd. - Elena Rybakina def. Caroline Garcia
The Garcia 2.0 that we saw in the closing weeks of 2017 wasn't in evidence here, as the Pasty twice led by a set and a break, failed to serve out the match at 5-4 in the 2nd, couldn't convert a MP and dropped a TB she led 3-0 and 4-1 as the #450-ranked Russian teen forced a 3rd set and won it in another TB to notch her first career Top 10 win.

2. Fed Cup 1st Rd. Match #2 - Antonia Lottner/GER def. Aliaksandra Sasnovich/BLR 7-5/6-4
what Sasnovich did to so many top players a season ago while leading a Cinderella Belarus squad to the '17 final, FC debutante Lottner did to *her* in Minsk in the Belarusian's '18 FC opener. Sasnovich never returned on the weekend, and Belarus was never quite the same, no matter how hard Aryna Sabalenka tried to right the squad's course by shear force of will. Germany won the deciding doubles, as the nation's "B"-team completed the biggest upset of this year's FC 1st Round, defeating Belarus 3-2.
3. Fed Cup WG II Match #4 - Deborah Chiesa/ITA def. Lara Arruabarrena/ESP
This tie seemed destined to go to the deciding doubles, but then Chiesa earned her Italian Fed Cup merit badge by taking on "the world" and winning, closing out this 2:28 match to move the Italians -- amazingly, yet again, even with something of a skeletal team -- within one victorious tie of returning to the World Group in 2019.
4. Fed Cup Europe/Africa I Pool A Round Robin Match #2 - Cagla Buyukakcay/TUR def. Alona Ostapenko/LAT
No matter what happened by the end of the weekend, as Latvian scrambled to win a Promotional Playoff and advance to the WG Playoffs, the most significant result in Tallinn was this one. Buyukakcay has racked up a series of "first player from Turkey to..." honors the last couple of seasons, though her results have somewhat leveled off over the last year or so. That changed when she opened up round robin play with a 6-2/3-6/6-3 win over the reigning Roland Garris champ, recording the first Top 10 win of her career.
5. Doha 2nd Rd. - Mihaela Buzarnescu def. Alona Ostapenko
days after Fed Cup, Ostapenko was registered by an opponent as their first career Top 10 victim for the second week in a row.
6t. Acapulco 1st Rd. - Renata Zarazua def. Kristyna Pliskova 6-3/6-4.
Acapulco 1st Rd. - Ana Sofia Sanchez/Renata Zarazua def. Kristyna Pliskova/Stefanie Voegele 4-6/6-4 [10-8]
the 20-year old Mexican (#253) notches her first WTA MD win and her maiden career Top 100 victory over Pliskova in front of a home crowd, then returned later in the day (w/ Ana Sofia Sanchez) and, not showing much hospitality, beat her in doubles, too. "...and don't come back, either."

8. Fed Cup World Group II - Marta Kostyuk/UKR def. Dasha Gavrilova/AUS
Gavrilova's "favorite" surface is grass. 15-year old Kostyuk (the '17 AO Jr. champ) admitted her leeriness of it during the week. Yet, in her FC debut, the Ukrainian, fresh off a breakout AO performance and ITF title run in Australia, hit double the number of winners (20-10) as Dasha, adding yet another wonderful experience to Australian memory wall.
9t. Saint Petersburg 1st Rd. - Anastasia Potapova def. Tatjana Maria 6-2/6-4
Saint Petersburg 1st Rd. - Elena Rybakina def. Timea Bacsinszky 6-4/6-3
the next Revolution begins, with two Hordettes getting their maiden MD wins on home soil.
HM- Fed Cup Asia/Oceania I Pool A Round Robin Match #2 - Ankita Raina/IND def. Yulia Putintseva/KAZ
Fed Cup is often shunted aside and ignored, but for the vast majority of the players involved on all levels of the competition it provides some of the most memorable moments of their entire career. Raina's win over Putintseva was such a moment, as she notched the biggest win over her career in her nation's longest-ever FC match (2:53), in front of a home crowd that included her mother.


And, now, on to the spring... no matter what Mother Nature says.

And where Genie Bouchard can perfect the next phase of her attack vs. the USTA...

All for now.


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