Monday, September 5, 2011

Wozniacki advances to U.S. Open quarterfinals

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.

14 comments:

Roi said...

Hey Diane, you may have seen it before but I just found it today, trying to learn the right pronunciation of Caroline Wozniacki's first name.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E-V0Gtj4BZ0

Back to our business, do you know how to pronunciate it? It may be as easy as english Caroline, but in today's match the ampire said CAROLINA, as we say it in spanish (don't know how to explain it) and herself, in a spanish tv show, also said CAROLINA. Im too confussed now.

Sunny nine said...

Well, commentators are a problem but I have to admit that I was glad that John McEnroe was not there for the women's match or for Federer's clinic-match. John was hopping around from match to match on CBS today taking away from Carillo and Courier. Just butting in. I was so tired of his voice I thought I might go crazy. It would have been nice for Patrick not to be there. I mute often but I enjoy the sound of the ball and the crowd that I am forced to listen to the commentators.
As far the match. Did you notice how tired Kuznetsova looked? I was surprised at what seemed to be her fitness level. It just seemed to be in Wozniacki's hands, not just due to play but due to fitness. Wozniacki did what she does, despite the overbearing coaching she got from the commentators-that is hang in, be patience and I think she notice Kuznetsova's level of energy.

Wayne said...

Prescient how this encounter was the exact carbon copy of their previous 3-set Ashe night-match a couple of years ago... Svetlana takes a tight first set, in complete control in the second - only to pegged back and somehow lose it, and then ground to submission and defeat in the third.

Diane said...

My understanding is that, in Denmark and in other parts of Europe, it is pronounced "Carolina." It is, of course, also pronounced "Vosniacki," but Commentators in the USA not only fail to see "Vosniacki (they use a "w")--they also say "Wozeniacki" (rhymes with hose). Yet they don't do that when they say "Wozniak" (they just get the "w" wrong).

Kuznetsova did look really tired, and that surprised me.

Jerem said...

Wozniacki's name should be pronounced "Vozniatski" (Polish pronounciation), and her first name "Caroline" is "Karolina" in Polish too, so that's why some umpires say it in this way.
But that's a little strange because "Caroline" seems to be her official first name, not "Karolina"...

Diane said...

I think I've heard one or two umpires pronounce "Wozniacki" correctly, i.e., as it would be pronounced in Poland.

Jeppe said...

Just to add to the confusion, the Danish pronunciation of Caroline is something like cow-LEE-nuh (we're a bit sloppy with the r's), which is nothing like the American. Diane is right about the last name: Woz rhymes with 'boss', not 'hose'.

I believe the Polish version would be Karolina Wozniaska, just like Sabine Lisicki would be Sabina Lisiska.

Sunny nine said...

My problem with all this pronunciation business is whether the women actually tell the interviewers, in what ever country they are in-the Brits aren't too great at names-to call them by what they (the players) consider the correct pronunciation. I have only heard of this one time-I believe it was at the AO 2009 that Safina (who probably thought she had some "power" by that time), asked the broadcaster to pronounce her name Safina, with the emphasis on the SAF(like her brother), not Safina with the emphasis on the second syllable. I remember Mary Carillo sarcastically saying, that Dinara wants to be called SAFina now instead of SafINa.
So my point is if the players don't correct the commentators then... I mean Caroline has the power to correct them now that she is no 1. I also think we all get a lot of the Russian names wrong as to where the accent is.

Diane said...

Yes, Safina made the correction, as did Julia Goerges (she corrected an umpires), and--several years ago--Claudine Schaul. The ESPN commentators (Drysdale and Shriver) were both stupid and nasty about Schaul's request.

Others may have done it, but those are the only ones I recall. I wish they would all ask to have their names pronounced correctly, but good luck to me on that one.

Wayne said...

All of this mispronunciating linguistical talk is making my head hurt. Another odd one recently was the sudden appearance of Daniela Hantuchova or HaN-TUU-KOoo-VA. The accent firmly placed on the second beat, the new pronunciation sounding like a Maori Warioress is apparently correct.

"The Brits aren't too great at names" ????? Have you ever heard Tracy Austin in commentary - she gets EVERY name wrong !!!!!

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