Saturday, February 13, 2010

Seen Around

by Savannah

Hey Savannah, following on from our discussions recently, are you thinking what I am thinking regarding the exceedingly strong field at Charleston and Memphis and the pull outs from Dubai?

One of the regulars here, Karen, posed the above questions about Dubai, Memphis and Charleston. Her comment sent me to look at the draw for Charleston so I'll talk about that last.

Memphis is a very weak draw. The main attraction is Maria Sharapova. Melanie Oudin, who just finished playing Fed Cup and the GDF Suez semi final is the second seed. I'm having trouble deciding whether back in the day this would've been a Tier III or Tier IV. Think I'm kidding? Here's the draw.

[1] Maria Sharapova vs Shenay Perry
[WC] Bethanie Mattek-Sands vs Katie O'brien
Monica Niculescu vs Qualifier
Renata Voracova vs [8] Elena Baltacha

[3] Kaia Kanepi vs Arantxa Rus
Laura Granville vs WC Nicole Vaidisova
Julia Schruff vs Michaella Krajicek
Stephanie Cohen-Aloro vs [5] Petra Kvitova

[6] Kristina Barrois vs Anne Keothavong
Michelle Larcher De Brito vs Qualifier
WC Ajla Tomljanovic vs Kristina Kucova
Karolina Sprem vs [4] Lucie Hradecka

[7] Vania King vs Kathrin Woerle
Qualifier vs Marta Domachowska
Stephanie Dubois vs Lilia Osterloh
Qualifier vs [2] Melanie Oudin

Don't get me wrong, there are some interesting players here but if the top seed doesn't make the final there are serious decisions that will have to be made in that camp. Oudin has a cold and it remains to be seen how fresh she'll be coming into this event.

Dubai is a Premier tournament. This is the draw.

[1] Wozniacki vs Bye
Shvedova vs Cibulkova
Razzano vs WC Sfar
Peer vs [13] Wickmayer

[11] Bartoli vs Q Makarova
Schyder vs Dulgheru
Martinez Sanchez vs Safarova
[8] Na Li vs Bye

[3]Venus Williams vs bye
Lisicki vs Q Chan Y J
Benesova vs Govoertsova
Cirstea vs [14] Schiavone

[9] Stosur vs Garbin
Srebotnik vs Pavlyuchenkova
Hantuchova vs Q Manasieva
[5] Dementieva vs Bye

[6] Jankovic vs Bye
Bammer vs Rezai
Bacsinsky vs Q Flipkens
Vesnina vs [12] Zvonareva

[16] Zheng vs Q Molik
Kleybanova vs Q Groenefeld
K Bondarenko vs Rybarikova
[4] Azarenka vs Bye

[7] Aga Radwanska vs Bye
Q Sevastova vs Dushevina
Petkovic vs A Bondarenko
Czink vs [10] WC Pennetta

[15] Petrova vs WC Vogele
WC Kirilenko vs Q Kulikova
Mirza vs Medina Garrigues
[2] Kuznetsova vs Bye

Dubai is a much stronger field than Memphis as it should be. There are several unseeded players who can get hot and make a run toward the semi's. The Bansidhe's fans say it was smart of her to play Memphis instead of Dubai. As I said we'll see.

The South American clay season is underway and a tournament is being played in Bogota. I haven't seen a MD for this event yet but I wanted to mention it so that no one thinks I'm ignoring South America.

The Family Circle Cup's official website hasn't updated for 2010 yet. So far the official site lists defending champion Sabine Lisicki and Jelena Jankovic as confirmed. Of course the big names are supposed to be entered but nothing official that I've found so far. I'll keep an eye out for an entry list.

A Dish Best Served Cold

Melanie Oudin defeated Elena Dementieva at the US Open last year. After a dramatic come back by the 18 year old Georgian yesterday their matchup today was expected to be close with American hopes pinned on Oudin. When Oudin won the first set it looked as if she might pull off another upset and make the final. What happened wasn't part of the Cinderella script.

Dementieva pulled herself together and systematically wore down her opponent. By the third set Oudin, who does have a cold, was mentally fried and visibly tired. The veteran showed how to put a bad set behind her and go on to win the match. Oudin showed that she is a couple of years away from being able to hang with the big girls and has nothing to be ashamed about.

Karen spoke about the WTA tournaments but there is some fascinating stuff going on in the ATP.

In support of those who believe draws are totally random at Memphis Andy Roddick, Mardy Fish, James Blake, Robbie Ginepri and Sam Querrey are all in the same section. The TD must be pulling his hair out.

The TD in Marseille might be in the ICU though. Top seeds [1] Andy Murray and [2] Juan Martin del Potro both pulled out with injuries. Del Potro is said to be out until May. The top seed is now Robin Soderling who has gone deep in Rotterdam. Film at eleven.

Richard Gasquet says he is playing the South American clay swing to improve his chances at the French Open.

End Note

I haven't written a lot about tennis this week but I have been watching. I have to say I haven't been impressed. It's hard to do commentary when you keep falling asleep on the matches don't you think? I'm talking about both tours here.

I'm also annoyed that TennisTV has picked up where it left off last year. It simply dies and there's nothing you can do - clear you cache, log on and off, restart the feed - that brings it back. Ironic that the best feed comes from Russian television isn't it?

Lucie Safarova wins this weeks what not to wear prize. She'll face Elena Dementieva tomorrow in Paris.

It's nice to end on a happy note. Stan Wawrinka and his wife welcomed a new baby girl into the world on Friday. Congratulations to them both.


SA said...

First paragraph has all the "big" names that are suppose to at the FCC. If you don't want to go back to the site...

Serena, Caro, Vika Azarenka, Sharapova, Zvonareva, JJ, Lisicki, and Melanie Oudin. Not as good as Dubai (IMO) but a hell of a lot better than Memphis. I'd say on par with a normal Premier event.

And also-the FCC site has been very good with updating for this year. I'm volunteering and I've been stalking their site since last November. Their twitter feed is also very good in announcing players that are coming and what is suppose to happen during the tournament (and also events not involving tennis but that's not of concern right now).

I don't work for them (how I wish) and I don't run the twitter feed, but I thought I'd let you know that the info from their site and twitter has been good.

Karen said...

LMAO at the What Not to Wear. Perhaps you should do a segment on that in wrapping up tournaments. LOL. As to the tennis, I have been falling asleep as well. I have no idea why Verdasco does absolutely nothing for me as a woman. I hear people say he is hot and everytime I see his name in the draw I hear how talented he is and how he is a threat, yet I have to check his stats every single time because the fellow has won only 3 titles, count them, 3 in almost 10 years on Tour. As to last night's match with Roddick/Querrey, I went to sleep after the second set. I hope Roddick wins today. Sharapova better make sure she wins in Memphis or her goose is officially cooked.

Craig said...

Love the idea of a What Not To Wear Prize being a regular award.

Savannah said...

Karen you're not the only one who was wondering if she needs a hormone check when it comes to Verdasco. I don't see it. I posted those pictures because I know he has a large fan base and that it's always nice to look at a nice body that's not over done.

SA thanks for the information!

Karen said...

LOL, Savannah I seriously thought there was something wrong with me. I get Nadal, Federer and dang it I have had the hots for Nalbandian for as long as I can remember, but Verdasco. He just comes across as the atypical Latin Lothario that you see in those really bad 70s and 80s tv shows. It also seems like it is a look that he tries very hard to keep. Ugh

Helen W said...

Ditto for me. To me he reeks of vanity. It doesn't help to read that he has his tennis shirts made shorter than usual so that his body will show when he does a smash.

Feli, Juan Carlos, Carlos Moya -- there are lots of lookers on the ATP that are way more appealing than Nando.