Great week for Julia, pretty much unexpected on clay, and on quite a good field for a 25K.
Fantastic comeback from 1-4 in the 3rd, according to the tournament thread
The only title she ever won on clay before was her first one, a 10K in Spain in '07... (see page 6 of this thread)
She has very little to defend till July, can we please get some sort of consistency?
Julia breaks (only just) into the top 150 and is closer than ever to Shahar as the top ranked Israeli player (Peer #136, Glushko #150).
However, other than the impressive title run in that deep 25K on clay two months ago, she has done next to nothing so far this season, has beaten exactly one top 150 player herself (MDM on hard courts hardly an achievement) and has boatloads of points to defend coming July.
Sure she has two slam qualies till then, but it's kind of hard to be optimistic about them.
Julia took advantage of the best seed she could possibly get, the slumping Kai-Chen Chang, who is yet to win a match this year (0-8 after the season opener) and a terrible clay-courter, and routed her 6-3 6-2, a very good win nonetheless.
Considering the stupid WTA qualies ranking system and having nothing to defend, this win means moving up to #140 or so.
If Shahar doesn't win her R1 match in Paris, Julia will take over as the top ranked Israeli for the first time in her career.
Next up, a talented 18 y.o. German Carina Witthoeft, who has already racked up some top-100 scalps last year and seem to like clay. Much better than her ranking would suggest and a future top-100 herself imo. Not an easy match.
Winner will play one of the Aussies, Rodionova (the older and better sister) or Rogowska, most likely the former.
Now Shahar has to make R3 to edge her
Somehow with Aga waiting on the opening round I don't see that happening.
A huge, huge win for Julia Other than that 25K title run last month there were no signs she could pull it off.
A veteran opponent who got much more clay pedigree than her, and rain delay in the decider.
Her record at big 3-setters keeps getting better
Most of the qualifiers slots were really good and just as in USO R1 she got one of the toughest ones, Torro-Flor which makes her living off clay and opponents in Julia's range
Already a great tournament, but how awesome it would be if she could pull this upset as well?