#trophyselfie no.1/2015 pic.twitter.com/uimbWsaLos
— Andrea Petkovic (@andreapetkovic) February 15, 2015
Yesterday, I tweeted that I wished the Petko vs. BZS match in Antwerp were the final. Well, that's exactly what it turned out to be. Andrea Petkovic won the Diamond Games today when her opponent in the final, Carla Suarez Navarro, withdrew because of neck pain.
This, of course, isn't how anyone wanted it to be--not the fans, not the WTA, not the tournament staff, not Petkovic, and certainly not Suarez Navarro. Petko had to play her heart out in the semifinals against Barbora Zahlavova Strycova, whose defense was sometimes breathtaking. Petkovic beat BZS 7-6, 7-6. For her part, Suarez Navarro made easy work of defeating Karolina Pliskova in the semifinals.
The crowd who showed up for the final saw a brief exhibition match between Petkovic and tournament director Kim Clijsters; Clijsters won.
Petkovic will re-enter the Top 10 this week. In early April, she she'll be in Charleston to defend her 2014 title.
Top seeds Anabel Medina Garrigues and Arantxa Parra Santoja won the Antwerp doubles title, defeating wild cards An-Sophie Mestach and Alison Van Uytvanck 6-4, 3-6, 10-5 in the final. Van Uytvanck also had a wild card in singles and took champion Petkovic to three sets in the second round. The match lasted three hours and 19 minutes, and Petkovic had to save eight match points.
Meanwhile, Daniela Hantuchova won the title in Pattaya City for the third time. Hantuchova had to knock off Marina Erakovic and Ajla Tomljanovic in the semifinals and the final, respectively. Hantuchova saved two match points against Erakovic.
Chan Hao-Ching and Chan Jung-Jan won the doubles title, beating Shuko Aoyama and Tamerine Tanasugarn.
Things got off to a thrilling start in Dubai. Flavia Pennetta saved four match points to defeat Julia Goerges. This was Pennetta's first win of the 2015 season. "...I've been trying to find my good tennis," the Italian said, "but it's not coming. But I have to play with what I have now."
And--surprise!--Alize Cornet needed three hours and eleven minutes to defeat Kirsten Flipkens in a match that had my head spinning. Cornet was in full French opera mode, cracking her racket, screaming, and moaning over the fact that she had no challenges remaining when she really needed them. I'd have moaned, too. All of the non-contested points would have gone the Frenchwoman's way. I'm with Mary Carillo--players should be able to challenge as many times as they want to. Turning line call accuracy into a game doesn't appeal to me, especially when the line judges have a mediocre success rate (which is always being bragged about--talk about lower your expectations).
At any rate, After taking the first set 6-0, Cornet went on to lose the second set in a tiebreak, as Flipkens finally got into the match. The third set was all drama all the time, and a lot of fun; Cornet won it 6-3. Afterwards, she said "I was tired, I was sweating, I was dead...."