One tennis head called it a train wreck of a match and just like a train wreck you couldn't look away.
Jelena Dokic''s three hour marathon win against a determined Alisa Kleybanova was must see t.v. in a morbid sort of way. We all know the story that Jelena has told and lived through. Just when it looked like all the nasty little things were over with the family of a deceased Australian drug lord went public demanding payment for assistance he gave Ms Dokic when she was on the down and out. Worse, the poster boy for horrible tennis father, Damir Dokic, is mewling an apology to his daughter and asking to become part of her life again. All of this was going on in the background as Jelena took the court last night.
She is still working the rust out of her game. Her UFE count was atrocious. Her use of Hawk Eye was ineffectual. She should've won the match in two sets. She seems to be working into the place where she realizes that powerful groundies need to be balanced with more nuanced play.
But who wasn't pulling for her last night? Nothing against Alisa who played a cleaner though not perfect match. Anyone who has lived knows what it's like to go through the fire and come out on the other side needing redemption and wanting to prove that your God given talent wasn't wasted, that you can indeed reach the heights you glimpsed before the jaws of hell opened and swallowed you whole?
Jelena will face Dinara Safina next. Will the woman who was the hottest on the tour last year put an end to Jelena's fairy tale run? We'll have to wait and see. Until then we can all marvel at the week Jelena Dokic has had.
I Am Number 1
Marion Bartoli assured that a new woman will be singing that oldie by Nelly by the end of the week. Slimmer and playing the tennis that got her to a Wimbledon final a couple of years ago Marion escorted the computer ranked World Number 1 and ITF player of the year Jelena Jankovic to the exits. Jelena
was never in the match and Marion was determined not to let her go into her act. It looked as if Jelena was too surprised to start cutting up. There were some feeble attempts involving intimtidation of ball kids but otherwise she went quietly. Marion will next face Vera Zvonareva.
I'm Like a Bird...
Nelly Furtado's hit from a few years back came to mind watching Tomas Berdych snatch defeat from the jaws of victory yesterday. Poised to win his match against Roger Federer Tomas got something caught in his throat and went out like a bitch. I'm sorry but there is no other way to describe what happened. Roger didn't have to do anything but keep the ball in play since Berdych was determined to hand the match to him. Roger survived another round and tennisheads in the US were spared the spectacle of Patrick McEnroe crying his eyes out on national television. Roger plays Juan Martin Del Potro next. Juan Martin has played a lot of tennis coming into this round.
Just Stop It
Ms Kleybanova is hungry. She wants to be in the conversation about Russian women's tennis. Fitness and tightening up her game are top on her list. I'll tell you what's top on my list for her. There are many women who play tennis with long hair. Elena Demetieva's hair is quite long as is Vera Zvonareva's. Dinara has let her hair grow longer. Caroline Wozniacki's tresses descend down her back when she plays. The list goes on and on. Each of these women cuts an elegant figure on court exhibiting grace with power. You can't play tennis and not sweat. I'm begging someone near and dear to Alisa to tell her that squeezing the perspiration out of your hair is not the way to go. It's quite disconcerting to this fan. If you're going to wear a hat and you perspire a lot find some way to keep that hair squeezing thing out of your repertoire. Yuck!