Yeah, I think pretty much everyone on tour sees playing Sam in Australia as their golden opportunity for a top ten win. And you're right, every time she loses a match like this she reinforces the self-belief in her opponents.
The sad thing is, I think Sam played a lot better yesterday than she did in Sydney, and I think Zheng probably played a bit worse. But there was still basically the same result
This is true, and the result came down to the last 5 games, in which Sam's game fell apart more dramatically than I've ever seen. Zheng didn't need to fight too much tbh, she really just had to keep the ball in play and wait for the error from Sam.
Very happy that Sam and Jools (is it Goersur or Stoerges?) won. I hope they go deep together, I think that would be a really good tonic for Sam. Reaching the 2011 Wimbledon final with Sabine was a perfect way for Sam to get over the disppointment of her singles loss to Czink, and we all know what she did a few months later