WTA Odds N' Ends... No.1 On The Line
Published January 14, 2013 09:34
One of the biggest storylines during the Australian Open will be which of three players will end up with the No.1 ranking at the end of the fortnight. Defending champion Victoria Azarenka has to reach the final to have a chance to keep the top spot. Maria Sharapova has to at least make the final four. Serena Williams will rise to No.1 if she reaches the final regardless of Azarenka and Sharapova's showings and even if she falls short of the final would still have a shot at No.1, depending on Azarenka and Sharapova's results.
Here are some other stats of interest for early in the fortnight:
- When Francesca Schiavone takes the court for her first round match on Tuesday, it will be her 50th consecutive Grand Slam appearance, eight ahead of Marion Bartoli for most amongst active players.
- Kimiko Date-Krumm became the second-oldest player to compete at the Australian Open in the Open Era in 2012. A victory in her opener on Tuesday would make her the oldest woman to win a main draw match there in the Open Era. She is 42 years, 108 days as of the start of this fortnight.
- This year's draw has 14 players who are 30 or older.
- There are 17 teens in the draw, the most in a Grand Slam draw since the 2010 US Open, which also had 17. Croatia's Donna Vekic is the youngest player in the field at 16.
- Russia has the most players in the draw with 13, followed by the USA with 11.
Radwanska Keeps Rolling
Last week in Sydney, Agnieszka Radwanska picked up her second title of the season. Not only did she not drop a set just like the previous week in Auckland, but she recorded a double bagel in the final over Dominika Cibulkova. It was the first double bagel in a WTA final since Marion Bartoli defeated Olga Puchkova in Québec City in 2006, and before that it had not occurred since Auckland in 1993.
Vesnina Victorious In Hobart
After going titleless in her first six WTA finals, Elena Vesnina finally netted her first WTA title by topping defending champion Mona Barthel in Hobart. The Russian upended three seeds en route to the title - No.4 seed Yaroslava Shvedova in the second round, No.8 seed Sloane Stephens in the semifinals and No.9 seed Barthel in the final. The Moorilla Hobart International has now had 20 different champions in its 20 years. Also of interest, Sloane Stephens' quarterfinal win over Lauren Davis was the first time two American teens faced off in a WTA final eight since Oklahoma City in 1999.
- A week after making her Top 30 debut at No.29, Hobart semifinalist Sloane Stephens moved up four spots to make her Top 25 debut. The highest-ranked teen also passed No.26 Venus Williams as the third-highest ranked American.
- Hobart semifinalist Kirsten Flipkens ascended from No.51 to No.43 to make her Top 50 debut.
- Sydney quarterfinalist Madison Keys jumped 30 spots to a career-high No.105.
- Hobart champion Elena Vesnina climbed 21 spots to No.47, her best rank since September 2011.