WTA Diary: Friday, May 4, 2012
Published May 04, 2012 10:07
Every week there's a lot happening on the WTA - on the court, off the court, by the numbers, even a few tweets... catch up on it all in the WTA Diary.
There have been more than a few absorbing encounters in Budapest this week but, unless the final serves up something truly spectacular, the match of the tournament award will be going to Anna Tatishvili and Aleksandra Wozniak's quarterfinal rollercoaster on Thursday.
The 57 76(4) 64 scoreline doesn't even begin to tell the story of a match in which Wozniak fought back from 5-1 down in both the second and third sets - saving eight set and four match points - only to come up short in heartbreaking fashion.
Less than 24 hours after dragging her weary body off court and Tatishvili was out there again. Unfortunately, Sara Errani proved to be an obstacle too far for the Georgian who went down in straight sets. This was Errani's 14th consecutive clay court win - the best run on the red stuff since Dinara Safina reeled off 16 in a row back in 2009.
Standing between Sara and win number 15 is Elena Vesnina, who this week has quietly gone about the business of reaching her sixth WTA final. However, the previous five have all ended in runner-up speeches and the bubbly Russian is hoping to make it sixth time lucky on the banks of the Danube.
Another player looking to break their finals duck this weekend is Carla Suárez Navarro, who takes on big-hitting Kaia Kanepi for the Estoril title. The Spaniard's two previous finals both came in Marbella and both ended in three set defeats. Third time's a charm? Check back in on Saturday to find out in our final wraps from both Estoril and Budapest!
Getting The Blues?
Next week blue clay makes its much-anticipated debut in Madrid. The change from red to blue has certainly been taking up plenty of column inches since it was announced last year, but what have the players had to say about it?
The Grand Unveiling
Despite the players' laid back attitude to the new surface, the tournament organizers were keen to unveil their new surface with a bang at Thursday's opening ceremony. And what better way to launch their groundbreaking new surface than by inviting along Venus Williams - a player who has more than her fair share of groundbreaking achievements.
But what was Venus' take on the new surface? Well tournament director Ion Tiriac can breathe a sigh of relief because his brain child has been given the Venus seal of approval: "I think it's really in, bright colors are in. I wish I thought of it myself. I think it's a good idea."
Serena Williams is one of the world's most successful sports stars so she's used to the odd male admirer. And this summer she is likely to have a few more; John Isner, Andy Roddick and Bob and Mike Bryan have all been making noises about partnering the two-time Olympic gold medal winner at London 2012.
And with such stiff competition, Isner, the current World No.10, has already hatched a plan to get the nod: "I may be the odd man out. But I'm pretty good friends with Serena. Might need to bribe her, maybe send a gift in the mail to get her to play with me. Obviously, she's one of the most dominant players ever. To have her on my team would be a big advantage."
Quote Of The Week
Maria Sharapova may be the face of Land Rover (and Nike… and Tag… you get the picture!), but, judging by her winner's speech in Stuttgart, she is not planning to let brand loyalty get in the way of expanding her car collection.
"I have to make plans for more garage room," Sharapova said after taking the keys to the top of the range Porsche Carrera awarded to the tournament winner. "I am a girl and I always say I don't have enough space for my shoes but somehow I always buy more and more and more and always find space. The same will happen with the car."