Sunday, March 9, 2014

On the second day of Christmas

Radwanska gave to me--two sets at love. She gave them to Annika Beck, too, in Indian Wells tonight. The whole thing lasted an hour and seven minutes. Jim Courier referred to Radwanska as a "Swiss Army knife of a player" (has anyone else noticed that he has stopped his chronic habit of putting down women?).

Courier and Mary Carillo then launched into a discussion of USA tennis whose purpose seemed to be to prepare fans for a letdown. The presumption on Courier's part was that "Americans" (sorry, but for me, that term has to include our neighbors in Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Paraguay, etc.) can't assume that just because a player has "the stars and stripes on her/his shoulders," that the USA will prevail. Are citizens of the U.S. chauvinistic enough to presume that? Courier seems to think so.

Also, can we please stop the criticism of Radwanska because she has no affect on court? It's an individual personality thing--and it worked pretty damned well for Chris Evert, just in case anyone in the booth needs to be reminded.

It didn't take a lot of effort for Lauren Davis to win her match. She prevailed over countrywoman Varvara Lepchenko in straight sets. Eugenie Bouchard beat Sara Errani in straight sets, too, and Casey Dellacqua beat Roberta Vinci, so the "Italian redemption" was short-lived.

Carla Suarez Navarro and Alize Cornet went at it for three hours and 26 minutes--is anyone surprised? Cornet got the win, 6-7, 7-5, 6-3, though Suarez Navarro served for the match in the second set. (Does this mean that Cornet is the new Paszek?)

Caroline Wozniacki defeated Yaroslava Shvedova, and--in a match that was enough to make any fan of either player considerably nervous--Simona Halep defeated Lucie Safarova 6-2, 4-6, 6-4. Halep's serve was way off, or there wouldn't have been three sets. She's going to have to do something about that (note to Halep: the French Open begins in May). Halep plays Genie Bouchard next; that has the potential to be an outstanding match.

The "dream team" of Kristina Mladenovic and Flavia Pennetta were shown the exit today, also, by Kimiko Date-Krumm and Barbora Zahlavova Strycova.


Todd.Spiker said...

Hmmm, seems to me that the most chauvinistic group when it's come to the prospects of U.S. players over the years have been the broadcasters who have so often pushed "home" players over better "foreign" ones when it's come to coverage, leading to so many non-U.S. players at the top of the sport to be virtual strangers to a large portion of the casual-to-slightly-more tennis observers in this country, and thereby doing both tours a disservice.

Really, anyone who watches tennis in 2014 (or for most of the last decade, save for when Serena is on the court, for that matter) who blindly thinks the U.S. player will/should prevail hasn't been paying very close attention and isn't really a "fan" of the sport at all.

Interesting that that conversation took place on TC, since I somehow wonder greatly whether it would have been "allowed" on ESPN.

Diane said...

Well, it did occur to me that Courier's entire speech was just a big projection. That's probably why it sounded so bizarre. I mean, who was he trying to convince? Being the Davis Cup captain must be getting to him.

Todd.Spiker said...

And maybe doing so much TV work in Australia, too?

AfricanTennisNow said...

You're so right about Jim Courier. I find him a little arrogant for my taste sometimes. He's supposed to be authority in all things tennis but he likes to say he doesn't know much about WTA. He really doesn't belong in that booth.

Lindsay Davenport on the other hand is very refreshing.

Doug said...

Holding my breath. Biting my tongue. Crossing my fingers. Tying my tongue. Clearing my throat... and more.
Two aces and two lines. Four in a row to take the first game. Could it be? Might it be? C'mon Petra.

Diane said...

I have to take breaks while watching--too stressful :)

Todd.Spiker said...

Hard to believe Kvitova/Kuznetsova ended with a love 3rd set, huh? Just shocking. :) Before the match you probably could have flipped a coin to see which player would be on the winning side of 6-0, too. ;)

Doug said...

Sets one and three were played by the Petra of 2011. They were demolitions, winners flying everywhere. Set two was the all-too-familiar Kvitova Walkabout (*KW*). Note that she has played a number of 2011 sets this year. Could the sleeping giant be awakening?