Ilke Gers on the way up (article)
By David Long
There has been a lot more interest in the wildcards for the ASB Classic this year with the debate as to which New Zealanders they should be given to.
But few would argue that Ilke Gers doesn't deserve the two wildcards she's been given for this year's tournament.
Gers has the third highest world ranking among New Zealanders at 401 and had a good year around the world in the singles. But in the doubles the South African born Gers had an outstanding year.
She won the doubles title at the $US25,000 event at Allentown as well as reaching the finals in Cardiff and Port Pirie in Australia.
Gers also made the doubles semifinal of the WTA event in Pattaya.
And after such a great year in doubles Gers even had hopes of getting a wildcard for the main draw of the doubles rather than the qualifying.
"It was a disappointing but it's not up to me to decide who gets it," Gers told nzoom.com.
"I had an awesome year with doubles and hopefully I can play even better and get my ranking even higher."
"Obviously I'd like to do better in singles and maybe this year I can do."
Gers had to pull out of the doubles final at the Auckland Champs last month and she also missed the New Zealand Residentials because of a shoulder injury, but said she's over the problem now and just needed to rest it.
"It's just tendonitis that I've been struggling with for a while now," she said. "It's just a matter of resting it and getting back into it without rushing."
For Gers missing the Residentials was a huge disappointment as it goes some way towards deciding who should get the wildcard spots for the ASB Classic, but the fact that she is one of the few New Zealanders actively competing on the pro circuit around the world was good enough to see her in.
"I came home from Australia two weeks early just to get ready with the tournaments here before the ASB Classic," Gers said. "I was hoping that with plenty of time I'll have it right.
"I thought I had it right but I just made it worse in the Auckland Champs and I couldn't play the Residentials which was a huge disappointment but that's the way it goes."
And as for the upcoming ASB Classic: "I'm really excited about it," she said. "I'm hitting the ball well and I'm really determined to do well this year."