Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Top seeds already out of Brisbane

Samantha Stosur, the top seed in Brisbane, is out of the competition in the second round. Stosur was defeated 6-2, 6-4 by her countrywoman, the big-hitting Jarmila Groth. Groth was down 2-4 in the second set, but broke Stosur back. Groth hit a total of nine aces, with seven of them appearing in the first set, in which she won points on all fourteen of her first serves. Stosur never saw a break opportunity in the match.

Shahar Peer, who was seeded second, is also out of Brisbane, defeated by Lucie Safarova.

Flavia Pennetta was to have played in Brisbane, but she is sick with a gastro-intestinal illness. Daniela Hantuchova withdrew because her left achilles tendon problem.

Sabine Lisicki is back to her ace-hitting ways in Auckland. She hit ten in her first round match, which she won. Lisicki is a qualifier in Auckland. Heather Watson, also a qualifier (she beat top qualifying seed Alberta Brianti, in the second qualifying round), won her first round match against Noppawan Lertcheewakarn.

Stosur's defeat to a flat hitter with a big serve should give her something to think about before the Australian Open. Stosur's own serve is well-known, but like Justine Henin's, it is not consistent. In the French Open final, Francesca Schiavone had little problem handling Stosur's kick serve, which is the Australian's go-to second serve (and sometimes her first serve, too). Still, Stosur can frequently dominate on a clay court, as she did last year in Charleston, and throughout most of the French Open. She continues, however, to be vulnerable on other surfaces


Overhead Spin said...

Hi Diane, any news on Patty Schnyder. I cannot recall seeing her name on any entry lists for any of the lead up tournaments. It is like she has just disappeared.

I watched the Safina v. Wicky match last night. Safina is using a new service motion. One wonders how long that will last.

I was hoping that I could see some of the Brisbane tournament but even folks in Australia are upset that not a lot of the matches are being aired. Hopefully, they will rethink it soon and let us see what is happening.

I have always felt that Stosur's game was just made for clay. She does not move very well and that is why she does so well on clay.

Sunny nine said...

I was surprised at Stosur and Peer losing so early. But Stosur does play best on clay.
I read that Wickmayer said that Safina played well and hard. She took Wickmayer to 3 sets. Who knows where the Safina story will go.
I was really happy to hear through your blog that Lisicki was looking good. I am a fan of her serve and hope that the injuries are behind her.

Diane said...

I thought Patty was given a seed at Hobart. Does anyone know if something happened?

Overhead Spin said...

Hmm, Hobart, I need to go and check the player roster.

Sunny, the match last night between Wicky and Safina was very good. A nice well played match. Most of the points were ending in winners and there was not much of a let down by either player.

I have to say that this season has started out really well on the WTA, apart from some bizarre food poisoning incidents (Pennetta) and injury to Vania King's doubles partner which might require surgery, everyone seems to be pretty healthy. Looks like the longer off season has helped.