Re: US Open 2011 Reports From iSzávay
Kanepi vs. Tanasugarn:
I arrived at 2-all in the second with Tamarine at double break-point, so at that point I figured Kaia was probably rather rusty and out-of-form and Tamarine was taking advantage. Not quite the case! Immediately Tamarine blew the 2-all game with a huge flurry of unforced errors. Kaia looked really fit actually (I seem to remember her being a bit chubby before) whereas Tamarine did not look horrible, but definitely a bit lacking in the fitness department. Tamarine also had tape on her right arm, so maybe it is injured? Unfortunately, the match had almost no atmosphere because, even on a field court, almost no one was there, which I thought was strange as both of these players have had some good results and I would have thought people had heard of them. At first the points I saw were just long baseline rallies, with almost every single one ending in an unforced error. Not pretty stuff. Tamarine started to look really upset with herself, and her errors after blowing two break points, but she couldn't take them. I quickly noticed that Kaia is huge! She's really tall, and is really powerfully-built. She clearly has the ability to destroy the ball. For some reason this match she seemed to be trying to contain her power, as she was really just pushing. Because of this, Tamarine had many chances, both within rallies and within games, to take control, but she just missed so often that she slowly and surely fell farther behind. As the set continued, Kaia just pushed and Tamarine made error after error. Clearly Kaia was containing her ballbashing abilities, but I couldn't tell if it was strategic, as she knew Tamarine would miss, or if she always pushes now, due to lack of confidence or something else. Basically Kaia didn't really do anything, which allowed Tamarine to self-destruct. Tamarine seemed very upset with her game as she watched it slip away, however she was very nice after, sticking around to sign even though she lost.
Kaia: Like I said, she has really, really powerful build, so I honestly think she is meant to bash, and that has taken her to two major quarterfinals. Pushing worked very well today, but this is not getting to get her past stronger, more dogged opponents. With this game, I don't see much happening, but she gave me the impression that she could be a pretty successful ballbasher if she had the proper focus and all that.
Tamarine: Maybe she is injured, because of her arm tape, but it was disappointing. She had plenty of chances, as Kaia was doing nothing, but she always found a way to miss. You could see that her game and court-sense were still there, as she hit some very nice shots and volleys, but the only solution I can see is a lot of practice. If Tamarine wants to put in a lot of work and practicing consistency, she can still be top fifty, but at this point in her life I'm not sure whether she wants to work that hard, which just means she will miss a lot of chances and play very rusty on the occasions she does play.
My number one: Victoria Azarenka
ATP: Novak Djoković
Crazy Frenches! Gilles Simon Alizé Cornet