I found this very nice article about the girls from their win over Pavlyuchenkova and Pervak from earlier this year.
It's a dog-eat-dog world out there in the juniors
Great drama out on one of the smaller courts yesterday, where the No. 1-seeded junior girls' team of Anastasia Pavlyuenchova and Ksenia Pervak of Russia were taking on the unseeded team of Misaki Doi and Kurumi Nara of Japan.
It looked like a serious physical mismatch. But there was no doubt the Japanese girls can play.
While Pavlyuchenkova is ranked No. 1 in the world in the juniors, and Pervak No. 6 (they're both 16), the Japanese girls were no slouches, either.
Doi is ranked No. 63, and lost in the first round of singles qualifying. Nara, just 15, is ranked No. 20. They played together in Repentigny last week at the big junior event there, and waxed the Canadian team of Rebecca Marino and Khristina Blajkevitch 6-1 6-0.
Marino, you might remember, won the singles event.
Anyhow, the Japanese girls won the first set, and the Russian coaches were getting pretty fidgety. Pavlov Nicolaevich, Pervak's coach, was chain-smoking (and hiding it underneath the stands, which fooled no one.
The Japanese broke serve late in the second set, and easily served out a 6-4, 6-4 win.
Pavlyuchenkova, is not used to losing, She won the Australian Open singles this year, got to the quarter-finals at Wimbledon and the semis at the French.
But last year, she won both the U.S. Open and Australian, and got to the final of the French. In doubles, she came within one match of winning the Grand Slam, losing only the final of the U.S. Open. In three of those events, she played with Toronto's Sharon Fichman (winning two).
She got the what-for after this one from her coach/father.
Meanwhile, the Japanese team was all smiles, posing for photos and bowing each time someone took their picture:
Pervak's coach, Nicolaevich, was no less displeased:
But the Japanese just kept signing autographs. They have pretty short names, but it seemed as though they were signing first, middle and last names, full addresses and dates of birth - with great care and perfect penmanship.
There was a bow and a smile after each autograph, too.
It was really great stuff. And you didn't have to speak either language to appreciate it.
***UPDATE, Friday morning, 8 a.m.. The two Russian girls just stormed into Starbucks, nearly knocking over everything in their way - including me. Clearly, they STILL haven't gotten over it.
The Japanese team, by the way, won their quarter-final match 6-4 in the third set, and are now in the semis - still smiling.