Wolf's Birmingham Reports - Tuesday
Not sure where to put this because I have never reported on a main draw event so I've created a new thread.
Got there a little late today and the with no British action to start with I headed to the outside courts. There are four courts back to back with only one stand which only overlooks courts one and two and court one is clearly in no fit state for play.
Melinda Czink vs Arantxa Parra Santonja was the match I watched the most. Both players had nice accurate serves that were fairly big, but at crucial times in each set the Spainaird was broken. Both player had simular orthodox games but Czink was just the better player.
Steph Voegele vs Carly Gullickson was a right tussle. Gullickson had a powerful game and liked to come to the net but Voegele more slight and her shots more fluid. The American was a break up when I joined and despite losing it broke again to take the set. Second set went with serve until the 12th game where Voegele broke from 40-15 down with some stunning winners. Went to centre court after this but Voegele came from 4-2 down to take the match 7-5 in the 3rd.
Didn't see much of the match between Goerges and Rodionova but the Russian had a running battle with the umpire throughout the second set which continued after the match had ended.
I went to centre court to see the end of the Mirza-Poutchek match where Poutchek was getting very irritated. Mirza served it out despite a couple of bad UE's.
Anne Keothavong then very easily dissmissed the challenge of Sofia Arvidsson. Anne had a very, very dodgy start Arvidsson went 2-0 up without having to do anything at all but Anne found her range and from then on it was a bit of a procession. Anne's backhand actually looked as good as her forehand today and I think her movement has improved as well chasing down a number of balls. Arvidsson didn't seem at the races and her second serve was cannon fodder at times, looked weak.
Match of the day without a question though was the tussle between Naomi Broady and Alla Kudryavtseva. Broady was exceptional. Absolutely brilliant. Whilst it would have been nice if she had taken one of her four match points it is immaterial in the grand scheme of things she is clearly very talented and there is no reason why she can't break onto the main tour (except maybe if she can't produce this on surfaces other than grass). Her physical capabilities were used to the max, some really gigantic serving. Her one handed backhand was immense, both aesthetically pleasing and effective. OK sometimes it could go wrong and it would go well out but when you go for your shots that is what can happen. Kudryavtseva actually played well herself, very solid on the groundstrokes and anything that Broady hit that was short, flighted or slow was put away for winner. The match points...Broady understandably was a little tight first one...too short hit for a winner. Second one she decided to attack a second serve but overcooked it. Third one... return too short hit for winner. Fourth another shot too short again punished. On the ITF's you can get away with shots like that on the WTA tour you won't. She regrouped and went 4-2 ahead in the decider but a few points didn't go her way and she was about to serve to stay in it at 4-5 when the rain, which had been coming down very lightly for about an hour, increased in speed and despite it never really coming down very hard it didn't stop and play was suspended. Shame because I wanted to see some doubles action but I think Naomi will be better served coming out in the morning.
EDIT: In all my excitment I forgot to mention Broady's weaknesses, she's not a world beater just yet!! Doesn't move particulary well especially if the ball, especially from a return, is directed straight at her she doesn't get out of the way quick enough.Also exposed bu down the line forehands onto her backhand - just copudn't cope. Of course she was erratic a bit at times but I suppose she played to her strengths by being agressive which in turn led to errors. Forehand was nowhere near her backhand but that isn't that much of a slight! Also not agressive enough on the midcourt balls she allowed the Russain to pass her a few times with shots she really should of put away.
Last edited by wolf_is_the_man; Jun 9th, 2009 at 08:36 PM.