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post #1 of 39 (permalink) Old Feb 21st, 2009, 11:48 PM Thread Starter
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Wink Elisse's Dubai Report and Pics!!

Hi everyone!!

This was the first time I had ever been to Dubai and with all the controversy surrounding the tourney this year, I wanted to write a report to show you all what the tourney and Dubai was really like. (LOL brace yourselves...this is gonna be long!! hahahha )


Thursday - Saturday

After leaving a very snowy London, set out on my 6 hour flight to Dubai. I admit I had pre-concieved ideas about Dubai before I went there and all of them were totally wrong. Dubai is a very clean, modern city which feels incredibly safe to walk around, even for a single female. All the people I met were so friendly, respectful and I certainly didn't feel like a 'second class citizen' being female there. Spent the first two days going around Dubai...sight seeing but shopping mainly!! hahaha

Sunday -
Ok, on to the tennis The tournament is set at the Aviation Club, which is a really beautiful venue Full of little bars and resturants surrounded by trees covered in fairy-lights, a little lake area and gardens. The main stadium is in the center, with 3 smaller side match courts, 2 practise courts open to the public and all the other practise courts kept private. I thought the venue would be big, but it's pretty small, very friendly atmosphere..and I have to say, one of my favorites of all the tournaments I have ever been to!!!! At the end of the 3 days..I think everyone at the whole tourney knew me by name! hahaha

First match I saw was over on Court 1 - Pironkova v Kutuzova. The side courts only have seating at one end, so at midday it's not the best for taking photos as you are facing straight into the sun. Pironkova played very well, pretty solid win for her. I think they both were getting slightly irritated with the Umpire who kept saying the names wrong and getting the scores wrong too! (That was a problem at the whole tourney...I think all the matches on the outside courts had the wrong scores at some time hahaha ) Saw Chakvetadze watching this match from the back of the stands. After that match I went to Court 3 watched some of Bammer v Koryttseva, then heading back to Court 1 for Dushevina v Yan. By this time it was pretty hot, so I headed round to the practise courts to get a bit of shade.....saw Monica Niculescu hitting with Agnes Szavay, both girls looked very relaxed. Wandering around outside the courts was Richard Williams and his gf, slightly later saw Venus heading off to the massage rooms. On the other practise court was Anabel Medina Garrigues with her coach, hitting tons of balls, mainly seemed to be working on her serve...lol think she was a little pissed off with him at one stage, but she was all smiles again by the time she was leaving the court.

Finally got round to going onto the main stadium for the evening session - stadium is beautiful!!!!! And on the main ground pass you can sit anywhere...only problem though, they don't allow photography on the main stadium, so no pics from any of the matches on there First match up was Kirilenko v Pavlychenkova.....Maria played a pretty bad match, wasn't great..most for the crowd still seemed to be on her side though, but dissapointing performance from Kirilenko. Next up was Vesnina v Na Li....once again first set was nothing special, looked like Na Li would win easily...so I left at the start of the second to go back to the hotel. LOL never realised that Vesnina would make a mammoth fightback to win the match!! hahahhahaha

Akgul AmanmuradovaEleni Daniilidou
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post #2 of 39 (permalink) Old Feb 21st, 2009, 11:48 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Elisse's Dubai Report and Pics!!

Monday -
Another beautiful day in the Dubai sunshine Started off at the practise courts for the Kid's Clinic being run by Cara Black and Liezel Huber. Both girls seemed to really enjoy their time with the kids...and though Liezel took most of the control (as usual hahaha ) Cara really looked like she was having fun, she looked very happy. The clinic lasted about an hour and by this time the weather was very hot On the practise courts was Jankovic wearing orange and black....she seemed to be there on her own, just practising her serve, no one else with her. Saw Alisa Kleybanova walking through the grounds..she seems like a really nice girl, she was chatting and laughing with the security I headed to the stadium to watch Aga Radwanska v Ula Radwanska...I stayed there for the first set but it was so hot, I decided to leave and go over to the slightly cooler Court 2 to watch Monica Niculescu v Shuai Peng (I know on the board it's been mentioned about the poor attendance on the main stadium, but that really wasn't true, there were loads of people in the grounds...but in the day I think most people were on the side courts because the stadium gets so hot ) Both girls played well and even though Monica was winning, she was crying...stayed calmer than the last time I saw her though But she has a very interesting game..you never quite know that she is gonna do next. Stayed at the side courts for a while...saw some of Schiavone v Dellacqua, Cirstea v Cibulkova, Stosur v Rybarikova. After went for a walk around the grounds - got a copy of the official programme...big glossy magazine which was free! (At Wimby they'd charge you £9 for the privilage of having an official programme ) Sponsor stands.....Adidas, Barclays, Nintendo Wii, Dubai Duty Free (lol...I loveeeeeeeeeee Dubai Duty Free....as they say in the ads hahahahhaa ) and a stand giving out free packets of cigarettes LMAO.....so nice to see healthy lifestyles being promoted at a tennis tourney! Headed back over to the practise courts to watch Akgul Amanmuradova and her dubs partner Chia-Jung Chuang - they were both working pretty hard but also a lot of laughing, I think they make a great dubs team

Stayed again for the evening session....Medina Garrigues v Klepac..very straight forward win for Anabel. The onto stadium for Ivanovic v Kleybanova. Tonight there was a huge crowd on the stadium...pretty noisey and all wanting to be involved in the match Though there was a lot of people cheering for Ana (mostly teenage boys lol ) I was really surprised by how many people were cheering for Alisa though...in fact, the majority seemed to be on her side hahahahaha It was a pretty funny match....with mocking shouts of 'Adje' and laughter coming from the 'cheap seats' At the end of the match, even though she lost, Alisa got a far bigger cheer than Ana...and believe me..Alisa sure knows how to work the crowd, she really looked like she enjoyed the whole atmosphere and the fact that so many people were supporting her (All of the tournament staff were cheering for Alisa too LMAO) Next up was Sania Mirza v Ekaterina Makarova - Sania seems to be the biggest crowd draw here, with most people coming just to see her...honestly, Sania wasn't playing her best so I don't think she really deserved all the cheers and admiration she was getting from the crowd, so I left and went back to the hotel.

Akgul AmanmuradovaEleni Daniilidou
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Last edited by Elisse; Feb 21st, 2009 at 11:54 PM.
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post #3 of 39 (permalink) Old Feb 21st, 2009, 11:50 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Elisse's Dubai Report and Pics!!

Tuesday -
My last day at the tennis and in Dubai Another beautiful but VERY hot day in at the Aviation Club. Started my day over at the practise courts watching Akgul and Chuang, then headed over to the stadium for Jankovic v Niculescu. Today was kids day so it was very busy with loads of kids running around...lol big problems for the officials trying to keep them in their seats during play Then after that match headed over to Court 3 for Schiavone v Bartoli. There was loads of players around the grounds today......Kirilenko walking through the resturant area, Stubbsy and Sam at the practice courts, Poutchek and Nastya Rodionova also at the practice courts. Tammy Tanasugarn walking through the gardens. Errani heading to the massage rooms. Domi Cibulkova watching some tennis whilst she waited for her match. At 2pm went to Court 6 to watch Amanmuradova/Chuang doubles match - once again, the Umpire got the scores wrong (nothing different there then ) Great match from Akgul and Chuang!! They really worked well together, seemed to have a lot of confidence in their game and didn't seem in any doubt about winning. Watching the match was Tatiana Poutchek, Nastya and Arina Rodionova. After went for a walk again around the grounds, chatted to loads of people as usual...and ended my day watching Medina Garrigues/Schiavone v Poutchek/Rodionova.


btw - People at the grounds were talking about the whole Peer/Visa controversy and I have to say, everyone that I spoke to thought she should have been given the visa and that it was the WTA to blame for the whole incident, that it was their fault for not taking more care with securing her visa before hand. And though there were reports online about people boycotting the tournament if she had played there....I really don't think that was true for one minute. This is such a friendly tournament, I really think she would have had a lot of support in the grounds if she had played here

All in all, I had a really fantastic time in Dubai and at the Aviation Club, such a beautiful little tournament with a great atmophere!!!! Sadly, I was told that the venue will change next year to the new Dubai Stadium on the other side of the Creek so it will be very different, much bigger facilities and grounds which is a such a shame as this venue seems to be loved by everyone who attends the tournament. But anyway, I really loved this tourney so much...and wherever it will be held in Dubai next year......I'll definatley be going back again!!!

Hope you all enjoyed reading my report (yeah sorry, I know it was very long hahahaha ) I'll try post some photos from the tournament for you all tomorrow!!!



Akgul AmanmuradovaEleni Daniilidou
Abduraimova-Kyrgios-Bychkova-Putintseva-Istomin-Diyas
Official Website: http://www.akgulamanmuradova.com
Facebook: Support Uzbekistan Tennis Team in 2014
Twitter: http://twitter.com/elissetennis <--- Live Tweeting from...Roland Garros
- I went to Tashkent Open...yesss TASHKENT!!!! -
Davai-Akgul (3)Amanmuradova/Daniilidou (UZB/GRE) #MyDreamTeam

Last edited by Elisse; Feb 22nd, 2009 at 12:02 AM.
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post #4 of 39 (permalink) Old Feb 21st, 2009, 11:55 PM
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Re: Elisse's Dubai Report and Pics!!

thnks. look frwrd to the pics.

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post #5 of 39 (permalink) Old Feb 22nd, 2009, 12:26 AM
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Re: Elisse's Dubai Report and Pics!!

Thanks for the report. Sounds interesting. Can I be cheeky and ask if it was expensive to get into the tournament?

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post #6 of 39 (permalink) Old Feb 22nd, 2009, 04:17 AM
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Re: Elisse's Dubai Report and Pics!!

Thanks Elisse! I really enjoyed that!
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post #7 of 39 (permalink) Old Feb 22nd, 2009, 07:23 AM
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Re: Elisse's Dubai Report and Pics!!

Thanks for the great reports Elisse!

Cara Black - Liezel Huber - Mary Pierce

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post #8 of 39 (permalink) Old Feb 22nd, 2009, 07:28 AM
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Re: Elisse's Dubai Report and Pics!!

aweseom report Elisse
sounds like you had a great time.

pretty sure this location would still hold the ITF event.

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post #9 of 39 (permalink) Old Feb 22nd, 2009, 07:42 AM
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Re: Elisse's Dubai Report and Pics!!

Awesome report, thanks! Dubai does indeed sound like a nice tournament.
How hot was it over there?

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post #10 of 39 (permalink) Old Feb 22nd, 2009, 08:42 AM
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Re: Elisse's Dubai Report and Pics!!

Thank you a lot
I really hope Dubai will stay!

Rest in Peace Bally!
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post #11 of 39 (permalink) Old Feb 22nd, 2009, 09:06 AM
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Re: Elisse's Dubai Report and Pics!!

Thank you

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post #12 of 39 (permalink) Old Feb 22nd, 2009, 11:24 AM
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Re: Elisse's Dubai Report and Pics!!

Thanks for the report.
Why pictures wasnt allowed on main stadium ?

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post #13 of 39 (permalink) Old Feb 22nd, 2009, 12:00 PM
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Re: Elisse's Dubai Report and Pics!!

wow effort...good work

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post #14 of 39 (permalink) Old Feb 22nd, 2009, 12:45 PM
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Re: Elisse's Dubai Report and Pics!!

Sounds as though you had a brilliant time. Thanks for the report!

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post #15 of 39 (permalink) Old Feb 22nd, 2009, 01:32 PM
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Re: Elisse's Dubai Report and Pics!!

thanks you very much!

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