Saturday, October 26, 2013

There Can Only Be One, and other Tales from Istanbul

by Savannah

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via WTA

We're down to the last two players in Istanbul. Serena Williams will play...Li Na? But, but wasn't Victoria Azarenka supposed to be across the net from Terror Fabulous (still my favorite nick name for her) on Sunday? Oh yeah, she showed up looking and playing as if she hadn't touched a racquet since we last saw her. Sure she had time to appear in Stefan Gordy's latest video but that put no stress on her back...not the kind you get from playing tennis anyway but could it be she was more severely injured in the fall at Wimbledon than has been let on? I mean Maria Sharapova is still injured from her falls right? Oh it's her shoulder? Nevermind.

And after all the shit they went through to get Angelique Kerber into the final eight at Istanbul she didn't show much did she? I mean she did beat a totally disinterested Agniezska Radwanska in what was the most bizarre match of the tournament for me. Kerber's finger wag was just annoying.

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AFP/Getty Images

Sara Errani, who will be on my list of worst ever top ten player for a long time won a match from someone else who had no interest in beating her, Jelena Jankovic, avoided ignominy in a way I guess. I mean if your opponent shows absolutely no interest in winning her match you have to win right?

It was obvious that JJ wanted to conserve both mental and physical energy for her match against the World Number One and she put up the best fight of anyone this week.

Serena looked to be in pain although she says she hit the wall and there was no visible taping it was Serena in tears on court à la Sabine Lisicki against Marion Bartoli. The difference is that Serena found a way to win despite being out of sorts for whatever reason.

In my opinion Jelena Jankovic should be the come back player of the year. She was going nowhere fast until her brother showed up as her coach. She's gone from counter puncher to aggressively trying to win points. She's cut out the clowning somewhat - I mean she did do a bit of her schtick during her match against Errani but then Errani...oh never mind. Anyway there was none of that versus Serena today.
It seems that JJ is back from her disastrous association with Ricardo Sanchez and looks to be in great shape mentally and physically. She's going to make a lot of people very nervous down under in January. And while I snarked about Alicia Molik and Kevin Skinner singing Marko's praises I agreed with them. You know they're going to try and put some teenager from Britain in there but if you've watched her play the end of this year JJ is number eight with a bullet.

I haven't said much about Petra Kvitova have I? There really isn't that much to say about her. Her physical condition is not the best. I mean the gut isn't hanging as far over the top of her skirt as it was earlier this year but it's still there and they did show her using her inhaler during a break at one point. Still I think her biggest problem is between her ears. She needs a steady diet of players who aren't used to winning in order to be ready for the big matches. When she's playing women who are used to winning and want to win she has trouble playing well back to back. The comms said her physical condition is what her camp says they'll be working on during the off season. Let's hope they don't have her playing a shit ton of exhibitions in the Czech Republic like they did last year.

There will be one more match on the main tour before the farce that is Bulgaria begins. Shouldn't they play that before the YEC? I'm just being that person again? Shrug. Deal with it.

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