New Balls, Please

"Climbing the Comeback Mountain with the Tower of Tandil."

  • Recent Posts

  • Unhealthily Obsessed With

    agnieszka radwanska alize cornet amelie mauresmo ana ivanovic andy murray andy roddick aravane rezai ATP ATP week ahead australian open beijing belgrade british tennis bstaad caroline wozniacki cincinnati daniela hantuchova david ferrer david nalbandian davis cup dinara safina doha dubai elena dementieva ernests gulbis estoril fed cup feliciano lopez fernando gonzalez fernando verdasco flavia pennetta francesca schiavone french open gael monfils gilles simon image is everything indian wells jelena jankovic jo-wilfried tsonga john isner juan carlos ferrero juan martin del potro juan monaco julien benneteau justine henin kim clijsters kuala lumpur li na lleyton hewitt los angeles madrid marat safin marcos baghdatis maria kirilenko maria sharapova marin cilic marion bartoli melanie oudin miami mikhail youzhny montreal munich nikolay davydenko novak djokovic paris masters philipp kohlschreiber queens radek stepanek rafael nadal richard gasquet robin soderling roger federer rome sabine lisicki samantha stosur sam querrey serena williams shahar peer shanghai sorana cirstea stuttgart svetlana kuznetsova sydney the withdrawal method thomaz bellucci titlists tokyo tomas berdych tommy robredo us open venus williams vera zvonareva victoria azarenka video wimbledon WTA wta week ahead WTFs yanina wickmayer
  • Categories

Archive for the ‘beijing’ Category

Thursday’s OOP

Posted by gauloises1 on October 8, 2009


Center (from 11.00hrs)
1. ATP: Davydenko/Kunitsyn vs. Bryan/Bryan
2. Zhang Shuai vs. Marion Bartoli (NB 13.00hrs)
3. ATP: Nadal vs. Blake (NB 15.00hrs)
4. ATP: Safin vs. González
5. Nadia Petrova vs. Serena Williams (NB 19.00hrs)
6. ATP: Soderling vs. Robredo (NB 21.00hrs)

Court 1 (from 11.00hrs)
1. ATP: Ljubicic vs. Kubot
2. Black/Huber vs. Kleybanova/Schiavone (NB 13.00hrs)
3. Agnieszka Radwanska vs. María José Martínez Sánchez (NB 15.00hrs)
4. Flavia Pennetta vs. Vera Zvonareva
5. ATP: Benneteau/Chardy vs. Blake/Ram (NB 19.00hrs)

Court 2 (NB 14.30hrs)
1. ATP: Dlouhy/Kohlschreiber vs. Kubot/Marach
2. Pavlyuchenkova/Wickmayer vs. Hsieh/Peng (NB 15.30hrs)
3. Kudryavtseva/Makarova vs. Llagostera Vives/Martínez Sánchez (after suitable rest)


tokyo oop

Posted in beijing, tokyo | 1 Comment »

Beijing: What Did I Tell You? Evil.

Posted by gauloises1 on October 8, 2009

Fernando Verdasco beat Boss in straight sets today. Without, apparently, the slightest remorse.

ferrero verdasco beijing china open 2009

Whatever. I hope Boss gave him Tomic’s swine flu.

The top seeds did pretty well in Beijing today like the generally-reliable souls they are. Kolya totally destroyed Kohlschreiber, 61 60, and Nole had scarcely more mercy on Troicki, taking him out 63 60. Marin decided to be his usual scattershot self and drop a set to Benneteau for his own mysterious reasons, but thankfully bagelled him in the third. He’ll meet Kolya in the quarters. And should be scared.

Singles – Second Round
[2] N Djokovic (SRB) d V Troicki (SRB) 63 60
[4] N Davydenko (RUS) d P Kohlschreiber (GER) 61 60
[5] F Verdasco (ESP) d J Ferrero (ESP) 75 64
[8] [WC] M Cilic (CRO) d J Benneteau (FRA) 62 26 60

Doubles – Quarter-finals
M Knowles (BAH) / A Roddick (USA) d J Acasuso (ARG) / F Gonzalez (CHI) 46 75 10-4

Doubles – First Round
J Blake (USA) / A Ram (ISR) d [4] M Fyrstenberg (POL) / M Matkowski (POL) 61 36 10-3
N Davydenko (RUS) / I Kunitsyn (RUS) d V Hanescu (ROU) / R Wassen (NED) 46 75 10-7
J Benneteau (FRA) / J Chardy (FRA) d [WC] E Butorac (USA) / A Fisher (AUS) 62 64

Posted in beijing, fernando verdasco, juan carlos ferrero | Tagged: , | 2 Comments »

Beijing: What, Is Her Last Name Jankovic?

Posted by gauloises1 on October 8, 2009

Huge win for Peng Shuai today, defeating Maria Sharapova in straight sets to advance to the quarterfinals, 62 64. I only saw a little of it, but I thought Peng/Shuai was playing really well. So great for her to be doing so well at her home tournament, and honestly, after Shazza’s comment yesterday or whenever it was (the days all blend into one this time of year), I’m not too sorry.

sharapova beijing china open 2009

beijing wta peng shuai2

peng shuai beijing china open 2009

Also into the quarterfinals are Elena Dementieva, who demolished Li Na 62 60 (remember the feeling, people), and Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, who beat Aleksandra Wozniak 64 64. GO PAVS. And indeed a triumvirate of Russians, as Svetlana Kuznetsova bagelled Alona Bondarenko 60 in the third to advance. Love it.

kuznetsova beijing china open 2009

Does anybody else think Svetlana is really quite photogenic when she’s playing?

Singles – Third Round
(4) Elena Dementieva (RUS) d. (16) Li Na (CHN) 62 60
(6) Svetlana Kuznetsova (RUS) d. Alona Bondarenko (UKR) 63 46 60
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) d. Aleksandra Wozniak (CAN) 64 64
Peng Shuai (CHN) d. Maria Sharapova (RUS) 62 64

Doubles – Quarterfinals
Yan/Zheng (CHN/CHN) d. (6) Groenefeld/Schnyder (GER/SUI) 46 60 105

Doubles – Second Round
(4) Llagostera Vives/Martínez Sánchez (ESP/ESP) d. Grandin/Kops-Jones (RSA/USA) 16 75 106
(5) Hsieh/Peng (TPE/CHN) d. Errani/Pennetta (ITA/ITA) 62 75
Kleybanova/Schiavone (RUS/ITA) d. Bondarenko/Bondarenko (UKR/UKR) 76(4) 62

Posted in beijing, maria sharapova, shuai peng, svetlana kuznetsova | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

Wednesday’s OOP

Posted by gauloises1 on October 7, 2009


Center (from 11.00hrs)
1. ATP: Benneteau vs. Cilic
2. ATP: Davydenko vs. Kohlschreiber (NB 12.30hrs)
3. Svetlana Kuznetsova vs. Alona Bondarenko (NB 15.00hrs)
4. Peng Shuai vs. Maria Sharapova
5. Elena Dementieva vs. Li Na (NB 19.00hrs)
6. ATP: Troicki vs. Djokovic

Court 1 (from 11.00hrs)
1. ATP: Blake/Ram vs. Fyrstenberg/Matkowski
2. Aleksandra Wozniak vs. Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova
3. ATP: Acasuso/González vs. Knowles/Roddick (NB 14.00hrs)
4. Groenefeld/Schnyder vs. Yan/Zheng
5. ATP: Verdasco vs. Ferrero (NB 19.00hrs)

Court 2 (from 12.00hrs)
1. Grandin/Kops-Jones vs. Llagostera Vives/Martínez Sánchez
2. ATP: Benneteau/Chardy vs. Butorac/Fisher (after suitable rest)
3. ATP: Hanescu/Wassen vs. Davydenko/Kunitsyn (after suitable rest)
4. Kleybanova/Schiavone vs. Bondarenko/Bondarenko (after suitable rest)
5. Errani/Pennetta vs. Hsieh/Peng (after suitable rest)


tokyo oop

Posted in beijing, tokyo | Leave a Comment »

Beijing: Marat Actually Shows Up, Roddick Doesn’t

Posted by gauloises1 on October 7, 2009

So don’t look now, but Marat actually won a match to liven up his farewell tour of failure. He beat Chucho, 64 62. I’m confused by this.

marat safin beijing china open

Charging headlong into history.

In other, equally odd news, Roddick lost in straight sets to zombie Kubot. I actually watched this match and I still don’t know what’s up with that. Roddick cited a possible lack of preparation afterwards, but given that he still hasn’t actually qualified for the WTFs, he doesn’t want another blip like this next week.

roddick beijing china open 2009

lukasz kubot beijing china open 2009

Other than that, all the top seeds – Rafa, Kolya, Verdasco, Soderling, Gonzo – got through, although oddly only Gonzo who perhaps had the most difficult match (against Ferru) managed it in straights. I’m not sure what was up with Rafa dropping a set to Marcos Baghdatis, but there you are.

baghdatis marcos china open beijing 2009

“And for my next trick, I shall make my potential disappear. Watch carefully.”

I’m even less sure what’s up with Rafa’s outfit.


Could these shorts be uglier?

Singles – First Round
[1] R Nadal (ESP) d [WC] M Baghdatis (CYP) 64 36 64
[Q] L Kubot (POL) d [3] A Roddick (USA) 62 64
[4] N Davydenko (RUS) d I Kunitsyn (RUS) 61 67(6) 62
[5] F Verdasco (ESP) d [Q] R Ginepri (USA) 67(7) 61 62
[6] R Soderling (SWE) d J Chardy (FRA) 63 46 62
[7] F Gonzalez (CHI) d D Ferrer (ESP) 75 64
[WC] M Safin (RUS) d J Acasuso (ARG) 64 62
J Blake (USA) d [Q] F Mayer (GER) 63 36 63
I Ljubicic (CRO) d P Mathieu (FRA) 76(8) 46 61
V Troicki (SRB) d [Q] F Fognini (ITA) 76(5) 75

Doubles – First Round
J Acasuso (ARG) / F Gonzalez (CHI) d [1] D Nestor (CAN) / N Zimonjic (SRB) 67(7) 63 10-3
[2] B Bryan (USA) / M Bryan (USA) d B Soares (BRA) / K Ullyett (ZIM) 61 76(11)
L Kubot (POL) / O Marach (AUT) d M Llodra (FRA) / P Mathieu (FRA) 61 61

Posted in beijing, marat safin, marcos baghdatis, rafael nadal | Tagged: , , | 17 Comments »

Beijing: Weepy JJ, Azarenka Ousted

Posted by gauloises1 on October 7, 2009

Another eventful day in Beijing. First up, spare a thought for the somewhat forgotten woman, Elena Dementieva, who was after all the last women to capture a title on these grounds and who’s rampaging through her soft draw, demolishing Melinda Czink 3 and 2.

dementieva beijing china open

I’ve got a feeling, I’m telling you. Anyway, she was naturally overshadowed by – for one thing – the ousting of a not entirely healthy JJ by Peng Shuai. Or Shuai Peng. Or both. This wasn’t fun watching. JJ started off great guns and in fact was on the point of clinching the match, but once it got into a third set her resistance melted away, obviously still suffering from the wrist injury that caused her to retire in the Tokyo final. She cried throughout most of it. It was not good.

jankovic jelena beijing china openpeng shuai beijing china open

In her press conference, JJ talked about not having her mum travelling with her, her physical struggles, and the hope she’ll be able to play Doha – although she doesn’t sound keen on playing Bali as an alternative …

The match of the day was one that I missed, unfortunately. Sharapova beat Azarenka 63 67(5) 75 in what sounds like a marathon encounter. Certainly from her reaction, it seems to have meant a lot to her.

sharapova maria beijing china open

The match also seems to have had a catty flavour to it (unbelievable for a Sharapova match, right?); Azarenka took a couple of medical timeouts, causing Sharapova to allegedy remark on the second one, “What, is her last name Jankovic?”. Nice, Maria. You stay classy.

Otherwise all the seeds progressed, with Zvonareva, Pennetta, Radwanska, Petrova and Bartoli all notching up wins. Good stuff.

daniela hantuchova china open beijing

Singles – Second Round
(2) Serena Williams (USA) d. Ekaterina Makarova (RUS) 63 62
(4) Elena Dementieva (RUS) d. (Q) Melinda Czink (HUN) 64 63
(7) Vera Zvonareva (RUS) d. Francesca Schiavone (ITA) 63 60
Peng Shuai (CHN) d. (8) Jelena Jankovic (SRB) 46 75 62
Maria Sharapova (RUS) d. (9) Victoria Azarenka (BLR) 63 67(5) 75
(10) Flavia Pennetta (ITA) d. (Q) Kateryna Bondarenko (UKR) 36 75 63
(12) Agnieszka Radwanska (POL) d. Patty Schnyder (SUI) 64 61
(13) Nadia Petrova (RUS) d. Daniela Hantuchova (SVK) 61 26 75
(14) Marion Bartoli (FRA) d. Alisa Kleybanova (RUS) 62 63
María José Martínez Sánchez (ESP) d. (LL) Vania King (USA) 64 64

Doubles – Second Round
(1) Black/Huber (ZIM/USA) d. Szavay/Vinci (HUN/ITA) 36 60 103
Yan/Zheng (CHN/CHN) d. (2) Stosur/Stubbs (AUS/AUS) 76(5) 16 119
Pavlyuchenkova/Wickmayer (RUS/BEL) d. (3) Medina Garrigues/Ruano Pascual (ESP/ESP) 26 75 106
(6) Groenefeld/Schnyder (GER/SUI) d. (WC) Kuznetsova/Safina (RUS/RUS) w/o (Safina: low back injury)
Kudryavtseva/Makarova (RUS/RUS) d. (WC) Han/Ji (CHN/CHN) 76(5) 62

Posted in beijing, daniela hantuchova, elena dementieva, jelena jankovic, maria sharapova, shuai peng | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

So Can We Still Call Her The ‘Real No. 1’?

Posted by gauloises1 on October 6, 2009

Well, she’s back. Serena Williams beat Ekaterina Makarova 63 62 in Beijing this morning, which means that she will now be no. 1 when the rankings are reissued on Monday.

serena beijing china open

I actually watched this and I thought she was playing pretty well, not that Makarova put up much of a resistance. One thing that struck me was how subdued she was – not lacking in intensity, but very quiet and undemonstrative, at least until the last game where she unleashed some ferocious fist-pumps.

Anyway, back to no. 1 it is for the second time this year and naturally it was the main topic of discussion at her press conference:

Q: Serena, you said a couple days ago that you really wanted to earn No. 1. Do you think that you have done that? Can you tell us what you think in your ear has earned you the position of No. 1?

  A: I think I’ve earned it. I’ve won two Grand Slams. I wish I had gotten more, but you know I’m just excited to have those two this year. It’s great. I think I got pretty deep in the other ones, but if you don’t win, it doesn’t count whether you get deep or not. I’ve just been playing really consistent throughout the year. [Oh, really?!] Especially in the beginning of the year, I did well. Then I got sidelined a little bit by injury, but I kept fighting. I kept showing up and doing the best that I could do. [Oh, really?!!!] Sometimes, it was a first round loss, but I really tried, and I think at the end of the day, that’s what matters.

Q: Do you feel, I’ll try to put this carefully, do you feel vindicated at all in the discussion of the rankings system between players like yourself who really rise to the occasion at the Grand Slams and other players who maybe do well in lesser tournaments but don’t have those big victories? Do you feel like now it shows really who are the great players, who is the great player?

  A: I definitely feel better. I mean I would be lying if I sat here and said that I didn’t. I always say the ranking will come. I’m not focused on being No. 1. For me, I would rather have won the titles that I’ve won this year as opposed to having the ranking, but fortunately now, for next week at least, I’ll have a little bit of ranking.

All credit to Serena for taking back the no. 1 spot. I’m pleased for the following reasons:

1. Maybe now everyone will STFU about the whole ranking issue

2. Hopefully, this will make Safina’s life easier, or at least less of a constant torment

So … yeah. Is it 2010 yet? Anyway, my commentators during the Makarova match were saying it would be interesting to see the level of commitment Serena shows during what remains of the season, now that she’s got the no. 1 spot back. Indeed.

Posted in beijing, serena williams, WTA | Tagged: | 5 Comments »

Beijing Not Backwards In Coming Forwards. On Unicycles.

Posted by gauloises1 on October 6, 2009

Check out the official theme song of the China Open, complete with music video, sung by Yan Kung and Jane Zhang. It’s entitled ‘Proudly Fly’.

I must confess, I was hoping for tennis players flying through the air a la Crouching Tiger. Does that make me a racist?

And as if that wasn’t enough, the China Open also has cheerleaders …



… mascots …


… and, of course, clowns.



I think I love Beijing.

Posted in beijing | 4 Comments »

Tuesday’s OOP

Posted by gauloises1 on October 5, 2009


Center (from 11.00hrs)
1. ATP: Acasuso vs. Safin
2. Maria Sharapova vs. Victoria Azarenka (NB 12.00hrs)
3. ATP: Kubot vs. Roddick
4. ATP: Nadal vs. Baghdatis
5. Nadia Petrova vs. Daniela Hantuchova (NB 19.00hrs)
6. Yan/Zheng vs. Stosur/Stubbs

Court 1 (from 11.00hrs)
1. ATP: Blake vs. Mayer
2. Elena Dementieva vs. Melinda Czink
3. Ekaterina Makarova vs. Serena Williams (NB 15.00hrs)
4. Jelena Jankovic vs. Peng Shuai
5. Agnieszka Radwanska vs. Patty Schnyder (NB 19.00hrs)

Court 2 (from 11.00hrs)
1. ATP: Soares/Ullyett vs. Bryan/Bryan
2. ATP: Ferrer vs. González
3. ATP: Verdasco vs. Ginepri
4. ATP: Davydenko vs. Kunitsyn
5. ATP: Soderling vs. Chardy

Court 4 (from 12.30hrs)
1. Vania King vs. María José Martínez Sánchez
2. Alisa Kleybanova vs. Marion Bartoli
3. ATP: Nestor/Zimonjic vs. Acasuso/González (after suitable rest)
4. ATP: Llodra/Mathieu vs. Kubot/Marach (after suitable rest)

Court 5 (from 12.30hrs)
1. Flavia Pennetta vs. Kateryna Bondarenko
2. Francesca Schiavone vs. Vera Zvonareva
3. Han/Ji vs. Kudryavtseva/Makarova (after suitable rest)

Court 8 (from 11.00hrs)
1. Black/Huber vs. Szavay/Vinci
2. Medina Garrigues/Ruano Pascual vs. Pavlyuchenkova/Wickmayer
3. ATP: Mathieu vs. Ljubicic
4. ATP: Fognini vs. Troicki


tokyo oop

Posted in beijing, tokyo | 8 Comments »

Beijing: Deja Vu All Over Again

Posted by gauloises1 on October 5, 2009

It was for Venus Williams, anyway; she lost to Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 36 61 64 for her second successive defeat to the Russian teenager in as many weeks. Yay Pavs.

venus williams china open beijing pavlyuchenkova

anastasia pavlyuchenkova beijing china open 2009

Tignor reckons that Pavs is following a familiar pattern and could make a strong run here. I don’t know about that, but I do know that I like the way she talks in her press conferences:

Q: What was the secret of your success today?

Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova: I think the secret was that I just went today and I just wanted to enjoy the match and enjoyed playing out there. I have nothing really to lose and I just win with that spirit on court. I wanted to show good tennis my best and, especially we played last week, so I thought if I’m going to get any thoughts through my mind and if I’m going to start to think about her, about the score, and things, I’m not going to make it. I just tried to avoid all that stuff going through my mind and just started playing and enjoy it.

Q: What is the secret to beating Venus Williams two weeks in a row?

Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova: I don’t know. There are no secrets, I guess. The first time- it actually was the second time in Tokyo- I didn’t think about anything actually. I was just playing and playing, and point by point. I was just trying to move her as much as I could. I just tried to hit shot by shot, more and more. Hit more than her. I just wanted her to play more and move, because I remembered the first time we played and I lost by 6-0, 6-1 in the beginning of the year. I was just rushing and I was just trying to do something unbelievable, I guess. I just tried to play as simple as I can. Today I just tried to do the same thing. She started out way aggressive today. Especially the first set. She was playing much better. She was already preparing for this match more than she probably was last week. She wanted to kill me I guess. She was playing really well, actually in all the match. I’m quite happy.

Go Pavs. Anyway, with the exception of the first and third seeds, the rest of the top ladies fared pretty well. Kuznetsova steamrollered Medina Garrigues 62 61, Li Na survived a tough challenge from the erratic Safarova,  and Nadia Petrova took out compatriot and very occasional giant-killer Kudryavtseva 62 in the third. In unseeded news, Wozniak beat Cornet (Coneback on hold), Hantuchova took out Suarez Navarro, Kleybanova put out the wild card Wicky 63 in the third, and sadly Licky was forced to retire down 06 01 to Francesca Schiavone. Sad faces for Licky, people.

On the men’s side, who are just getting started, no real surprises. Boss beat Almagro (yay!), PEHK beat Karlovic, and Cilic disposed of Andreev 64 64 (yay again). Nole seems to have made slightly heavy weather of it against Hanescu, but came through in the end, 63 75. Good man.

novak djokovic beijing 2009 china open

Singles – Second Round
(WC) Zhang Shuai (CHN) d. (1) Dinara Safina (RUS) 75 76(5)
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) d. (3) Venus Williams (USA) 36 61 64
(6) Svetlana Kuznetsova (RUS) d. Anabel Medina Garrigues (ESP) 62 61
(16) Li Na (CHN) d. Lucie Safarova (CZE) 46 60 64
Aleksandra Wozniak (CAN) d. Alizé Cornet (FRA) 76(0) 64
Alona Bondarenko (UKR) d. Sara Errani (ITA) 63 63

Singles – First Round
(13) Nadia Petrova (RUS) d. (Q) Alla Kudryavtseva (RUS) 61 57 62
Daniela Hantuchova (SVK) d. Carla Suárez Navarro (ESP) 75 62
Francesca Schiavone (ITA) d. Sabine Lisicki (GER) 60 10 ret. (GI illness)
Alisa Kleybanova (RUS) d. (WC) Yanina Wickmayer (BEL) 57 63 63
(LL) Vania King (USA) d. (LL) Galina Voskoboeva (KAZ) 64 63

Doubles – First Round
(5) Hsieh/Peng (TPE/CHN) d. Senoglu/Shvedova (TUR/KAZ) 62 62
(6) Groenefeld/Schnyder (GER/SUI) d. Govortsova/Poutchek (BLR/BLR)
46 76(3) 104
Szavay/Vinci (HUN/ITA) d. Cirstea/Mirza (ROU/IND) 63 63
Kleybanova/Schiavone (RUS/ITA) d. Azarenka/Zvonareva (BLR/RUS) 63 46 107

Singles – First Round
[2] N Djokovic (SRB) d V Hanescu (ROU) 63 75
[8] [WC] M Cilic (CRO) d I Andreev (RUS) 64 64
P Kohlschreiber (GER) d I Karlovic (CRO) 76(6) 46 61
J Ferrero (ESP) d N Almagro (ESP) 75 76(3)
T Robredo (ESP) d B Becker (GER) 62 61
J Benneteau (FRA) d M Daniel (BRA) 63 64

Doubles – First Round
L Dlouhy (CZE) / P Kohlschreiber (GER) d [3] W Moodie (RSA) / D Norman (BEL) 67(1) 63 10-8
M Knowles (BAH) / A Roddick (USA) d [WC] H Lee (TPE) / T Yang (TPE) 63 64

Posted in anastasia pavlyuchenkova, beijing, novak djokovic, venus williams | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »