Schnyder Ousted, Says Goodbye To Charleston
Published April 04, 2011 12:00
CHARLESTON, SC, USA - The first round of the Family Circle Cup kicked off on Monday and it was a mixed day for the favorites, with seeds Patty Schnyder and Vera Dushevina bounced on a hot and windy day on Stadium court.
Dushevina, the No.16 seed, was the first of the seeded pair to go, falling to American Vania King, 64 76(7). King battled back from a break down in the first set and all kinds of deficits in the second set too - down a double break at 1-4, one set point at 3-5 and another two set points at 4-6 in the tie-break.
Schnyder, a two-time finalist at the Premier-level tournament and this year's No.13 seed, lost later in the day, saving nine match points before finally falling to South Africa's Chanelle Scheepers, 64 64. Schnyder saved four match points at 1-5 and five more at 3-5; Scheepers served it out comfortably at 64 54.
Afterwards, Schnyder said it would be her last time playing the tournament she has been so popular at over the years. "I feel so good whenever I come to Charleston, but I don't think I will be back as a player - maybe as a fan."
Also on Stadium court, 18-year-old Charleston area native Shelby Rogers took advantage of a main draw wildcard and pushed one of the WTA's veterans to the limits but ultimately fell to 36-year-old countrywoman Jill Craybas, 36 62 60. After a difficult start, Craybas won the last nine games of the match.
"I watched her play last year. She has a good serve and a good fighting spirit. I knew it would be tough," Craybas said. "She definitely has a good future on the tour. She has years to play - she just needs to keep working and enjoying it."
"I had fun even if I lost," Rogers said. "The crowd was awesome and their support was great. I felt good in the first set but then I started fighting myself a little bit. It happens. At least I learned I'm capable of playing at this level."
Rogers was a ballgirl in 2001, and was chosen to bring flowers out to that year's champion, Jennifer Capriati, at the trophy ceremony. She teared up when asked about it in press. "She kissed me on the cheek and told me I could be a professional tennis player one day," Rogers said before taking a moment.
In the last match on Stadium, No.14 seed Bethanie Mattek-Sands scored a 62 61 win over countrywoman Alexandra Stevenson, a former Top 20 player but a qualifier here. "It was really windy out there. The flag lies - whatever way the flag is blowing, it's the opposite on the court!" she said. "Alexandra has been playing a lot better. She's feeling confident this year. I'm happy to win today."
The other two seeds in action both won in straights, with No.12 seed Julia Goerges dismissing Olga Govortsova in one of the first matches of the day, 75 64, and No.11 seed Peng Shuai dismissing Sloane Stephens in one of the last matches of the day, 62 61. Peng had more reason to celebrate on Monday, setting a new career-high of No.30 in the world - her Top 30 debut.
In the most competitive match of the day, which took more than three hours, Chinese former Top 15 player Zheng Jie rallied to beat Puerto Rican qualifier, 36 76(10) 75. Zheng didn't have to save any match points but was two points from losing a total of nine times, including serving 5-6, 0-30 in the second set.