Mattek-Sands Doubles Up In Stuttgart
Published April 22, 2013 12:00
After a grueling win in the second round of qualies on Sunday, saving a match point down 5-4 in the third set to beat Maryna Zanevska, 62 46 75, Mattek-Sands had a much simpler go of things in the final round of qualies on Monday, recording a comfortable 63 64 win over Anna-Lena Friedsam.
As if battling into the main draw of the singles wasn't enough, Mattek-Sands took the court again later on with Sania Mirza to upset No.2 seeds Nadia Petrova and Katarina Srebotnik, 76(3) 75. They fought off a set point down 5-4 in the first set and rallied from 2-0 down in the second set to prevail.
"I feel really good about this day," Mattek-Sands said at the end of the day. "I played two tough matches and got two wins, and I think I have a day off tomorrow, which will be much appreciated!
"We played Nadia and Kata in the finals of Dubai this year and it was a tough match, we were actually down in the super tie-breaker and came back to win. They're always tough. They've been doing so well this year, they're one of the most consistent teams out there, which is why they're No.2 right now.
"It was a great win for us today."
Mattek-Sands talked about a little advantage she had going in. "It was Sania's first match on clay and Nadia and Kata's too - I was the lucky one who had a couple qualies matches on this surface."
The American is excited with the upcoming week, as well. "I play Yanina first round and I'm excited," she said. "I'm happy to be healthy and fit right now. I feel really confident in my game these days.
"And I love this tournament. I think the only reason I'm starting my European season this early is because of this tournament. The food is unbelievable and they really know how to treat the players. Tomorrow I think we're going to zip around in one of the Porsches - I'm really excited for that too."
Meanwhile, the top seeds met the media at the All-Access Hour - among them was Li Na, who was asked about being named to the TIME 100, TIME's annual list of the 100 most influential people.
"I was so excited when I saw the photo," Li commented. "I was like, 'Who's that? I think I know that girl!' But it was pretty cool. Of course it's so exciting they chose me. It's always nice to help tennis in China in any way I can, and tennis is going very well right now in China. When I first started playing my goal was just to be the national champion because it was hard to get information from the rest of the world - but now they show matches on television almost every week and the children know the sport.
"People see the matches on TV and know more about us, so more kids will want to be tennis players."