Saturday, January 24, 2009

Dinara "Thrill Ride" Safina goes to the quarterfinals

I have become so accustomed to Dinara Safina's last-minute, brink-of-defeat wins that when Alize Cornet served for the match at 5-3 in the third set in the Australian Open fourth round, I still expected Safina to win the match. 

I was right. Safina broke Cornet while saving two match points, then held, then broke Cornet again, winding up with with a 6-2, 2-6, 7-5 victory. 

Safina was on fire in the first set, going quickly to 5-0, but in the second set, she lost her way, returning to some old habits. She overhit the ball on many occasions, and looked close to having a meltdown. Cornet waited for Safina's errors, which were many, and she was rewarded. But when the sleeping giant was awakened, there was little Cornet could do to control the inevitable.

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