Jankovic, Dementieva Out; Ivanovic Moves On
Published March 14, 2009 12:00
INDIAN WELLS, CA, USA - Things didn't go as planned for a slew of seeds at the BNP Paribas Open on Saturday, as the second round came to a close at the $4.5-million, Premier-level tournament.
The first surprise of the day came early on as No.3 seed Elena Dementieva went down in a flurry of unforced errors to qualifier Petra Cetkovska, 76(2) 26 61. Dementieva, known for her aggressive yet consistent game style, was erratic during the two-hour upset, most notably hitting 14 double faults throughout the match. She bounced back from a tight first set loss to take the second set handily, but things tipped heavily in the other directrion in the deciding third.
"That was probably my worst match in a long time," Dementieva said. "Every time you lose you're trying to learn something. I feel I shouldn't have come here because I played a lot of matches at the beginning of the year, and I probably needed more time off to recover. When it was time to practice again I was just too tired. My mind wasn't there today, and I wasn't excited about playing this match. I just want to take a few days off and then get ready for Miami."
"I haven't won many matches this year, just in Bogotá and Acapulco on clay, and in Monterrey on last week," Cetkovska said. "I've been playing better and better, but this was my best match so far. When you're losing your matches all the time, which happened to me in the last six or seven months, it's very difficult - I just tried to believe it would turn around one day."
Cetkovska picked up her second Top 10 win, having beaten a No.10-ranked Marion Bartoli at Birmingham last June. The Czech is currently ranked No.71.
At night, Jelena Jankovic joined Dementieva on the sidelines after the young Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova stunned the No.2 seed in straight sets, 64 64. It was the 17-year-old Pavlyuchenkova's first career Top 10 victory.
"Last year I finished No.1 in the world and I was playing great tennis, especially at the end of the year. This year I'm not the same player," Jankovic said. "I'm struggling to find my game and the confidence on the court. She played well. Obviously she was the better player. But I'm not at my level."
Although she lost the first three games of her match, Ana Ivanovic didn't suffer the same fate as Dementieva. The No.5 seed roared back to win 12 of the next 16 games and beat Belarusian qualifier Anastasiya Yakimova, 64 63.
"She had a couple of matches behind her, and I was just trying to get into my rhythm at the beginning," said Ivanovic, the defending champion at Indian Wells. "I had a couple of mis-hits, but I don't think I played too badly. I was happy with my game, and happy I was able to step it up a little bit more later on in the match. Obviously there are some things I still want to work on, though."
Other seeded winners were No.7 seed Agnieszka Radwanska, No.12 seed Flavia Pennetta, No.21 seed Alisa Kleybanova, No.22 seed Agnes Szavay, No.23 seed Sybille Bammer, No.25-seeded Aleksandra Wozniak, No.30-seeded Daniela Hantuchova and No.31 seed Gisela Dulko. Hantuchova, who won this title in 2002 and 2007, saved two match points down 6-5 in the third set of her match to beat Yanina Wickmayer, 57 63 76(4). Dementieva was joined on the sidelines by No.11 seed Alizé Cornet, No.14 seed Dominika Cibulkova, No.15 seed Zheng Jie, No.20 seed Ai Sugiyama and No.27 seed Sara Errani.
The top half of the draw, led by No.1 seed Dinara Safina, will play third round matches on Sunday, with the bottom half to play their third rounds on Monday.