Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Honiton, in S.W. England
I travelled out to Australia (from England) hoping to see Svetlana in action both in Sydney and in Melbourne.
I did see her four times, though I didn't arrive in Sydney till the day after she withdrew from her first-round match. Obviously she wasn't too bad the day after, as I did see her there having a gentle practice session late on the Wednesday afternoon.
I arrived in Melbourne on the Monday evening - naturally (Sod's law) she was in the half of the draw which had played on Monday, but at least she had won easily.
She sailed through her second-round match on Wednesday. Then on Friday I was only able to watch her from the screen set up in Melbourne's Fereration Square, and she was doing okay, but for a wobble in the second set, against Maria Kirilenko. It seemed to me that she wasn't playing with enough confidence, and what should have been easy put-away overheads, for example, weren't firing on all cylinders, making it harder for Sveta to close out each game. A slight comeback from Maria K meant that the score ended up 6-1, 6-4 and it took longer than it should have.
I saw the match on Sunday in the Vodafone Arena against Shahar Peer. It was good to see Kuzy going a break up early in the first set. But again, I think there was some doubt in her mind, again the easy winners didn't seem to be forthcoming from her racket, I think her mental approach must have been wrong (far be it from me to criticise one of the world's top players!!) and Peer was able to break not once, but twice, thus winning the first set 6-4. Things didn't improve, and it almost looked like Sveta would be hard-pressed to win any games at all in the second set, but she did, she won two, and it almost looked like a fightback could be on the cards, but it didn't happen. As a Kuzy fan, I was quite distraught.
One notable feature was an almost complete lack of serve-and-volleying from Sveta, she seemed very reluctant to approach the net compared with her usual style.
And then yesterday I saw her and Martina H lose in the doubles, again without much of a fight. I guess Sveta is still suffering a bit of the after-effects of the respiratory illness she had in Sydney a fortnight ago. A pity really. I hope she'll be right for her next tournament (anyone know what will be her next event? - doesn't seem like she's entered in Tokyo).
Wishing her well for the rest of 2007...
But I notice if anything she seems to have put on weight over recent months. I guess like all players she works out in the gym to develop/maintain her strength. But I wonder if maybe she ought to go running maybe a little more, or find some other way of reducing the weight she seems to be carrying around (mobility seems to be a bit of a problem around the court, like when chasing drop-shots or lobs). It would be great to see a slightly slimmer and fitter, well-toned Kuzy. (But then again, far be it from me to criticise!!!) Anyone any thoughts on all this?
And the black hair....??