15th seed Svetlana Kuznetsova took a first set tiebreak off of world number 1 Caroline Wozniacki in tonight's U.S. Open round of 16 feature match. She then went up 4-1 in the second set. At that point, though, Kuznetsova got a bit shaky and made some errors. Anyone who has watched Kuznetsova for the last few years--and who has also watched Wozniacki--knew then that it was over for the Russian.
It was. She was broken in that game, and though she had a break point in the next game, she failed to convert it. Wozniacki served for the set at 5-4, and Kuznetsova broke with three stunning forehand shots, probably giving her fans some hope. But she was quickly broken back, and Wozniacki won the set 7-5. In the third set, Wozniacki dictated play, and Kuznetsova looked tired and slow. Serving at 1-5, the 15th seed saved four match points, but Wozniacki won the match on her fifth.
This was Kuznetsova's match to lose, and she lost it. The Russian player, who won the tournament in 2004, hit 40 winners, but she also made a whopping 78 unforced errors. It took Wozniacki over three hours to get past the Kuznetsova, but she was fit and ready to outlast her.
When I watch a match, I like one commentator or no commentators. I can tolerate two commentators. Three, however, is too many, and tonight on ESPN, Chris Evert was joined by Patrick McEnroe and Brad Gilbert. I switched to Tennis TV, but didn't get much relief. There was so much talking. Brad Gilbert apparently thinks it's "clever" to say "tree" instead of "three." He also doesn't understand how impolite it is to call a player a nickname she has begged people not to call her.
And here's a note to McEnroe: When it's a women's match, no--the mystery answer isn't to say "no person's land." Open your mouth like you're about to mispronounce the world number 1's name, and just say the "w" word. Same goes for commentators who say "linesperson" the moment they see a female official. It's very revealing, this avoidance of the word "woman."
Gilbert also insisted in praising Wozniacki for being a silent player. Thankfully, his co-commentators corrected him. How he's missed the constant "oompah," I don't know. But he misses a lot.
But back to the other "w" word: Wozniacki will play 10th seed Andrea Petkovic in the quarterfinals. seed Petkovic defeated Carla Suarez Navarro 6-1, 6-4. Suarez Navarro waited until the last minute to get into the match and play her enjoyable game. In fact, she broke Petkovic when she served for the match at 5-2 in the second set.