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andrewbroad
Dec 18th, 2004, 10:39 PM
There is a seven-minute documentary on Russian women's tennis in this week's Trans World Sport.

It begins with Vera Zvonareva hitting the serve which won the Fed Cup for Russia, then shows her smiling and lifting the Cup along with teammates Anastasia Myskina, Svetlana Kuznetsova and Elena Likhovtseva.

Vera was an appropriate player with whom to start. Although it's fair to say that Anna Kournikova inspired the future Russian Revolution with her world ranking of #8, and her glamour which "gave women's tennis a fillip it may not have desired, but has certainly benefitted from since", IMO it was Vera's superb victory over Venus Williams at the French Open 2003 that really kickstarted the Russian Revolution that we see today, because it all mushroomed after that triumph of Vera's. :D

They then showed a point from the Wimbledon 1974 final in which Olga Morozova was runner-up to Chris Evert - thirty years before Russia had its first Wimbledon champion in Maria Sharapova. They showed the final point of Maria's Wimbledon 2004 victory over Serena Williams. :D

They also showed footage of Maria training at the Nick Bollettieri academy in Florida, from when she was 14 years old (she was so gracefully tall even then!). But they said that some of the other Russians - notably Myskina, who threatened to boycott - didn't want Maria on the Fed Cup team because she's lived in America since she was 7, and because of the disruptive behaviour of her father.

They also credited a rather rich tennis-fan called Boris Yeltsin for the rise of Russian women's tennis, and showed some beautiful images of Moscow.

They interviewed only three players in the documentary: Elena Bovina, Svetlana Kuznetsova, and Spanish former player Arantxa Sánchez-Vicario. These interviews all came with annoying voiceovers instead of English subtitles. :mad:

These players talked about the Russian hunger for success, the rivalry to be the best Russian, and Sánchez-Vicario said that the Russians were now the players to beat, but that wouldn't be easy as they were now very, very strong (appropriately, this was said over the footage of Maria, whose power and mental strength are legendary).

The narrator concluded by saying that the question was not whether a Russian woman would become world number one, but who would be the first to do so. I think they'll find that the answer will be Maria Sharapova, who will also be number one for the longest number of weeks. :worship:


In the UK, Trans World Sport is repeated at 5:05 am on {Thursday night/Friday morning} on Channel 4. The Russian documentary is about 23 minutes after the start (based on Saturday-morning-length adverts).

Trans World Sport may also be televised in other countries.

--
Dr. Andrew Broad
http://www.geocities.com/andrewbroad/
http://www.geocities.com/andrewbroad/tennis/
http://www.geocities.com/andrewbroad/tennis/shara/

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/sizzlingsharapova/
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/verazvonareva/
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/jeldani/

!!!--Duiz™--!!!
Dec 18th, 2004, 10:55 PM
why only UK? I am starting ot hate UK...

Edward.
Dec 18th, 2004, 10:57 PM
Another very late bedtime for me.

I'll be wrecked for Xmas Eve.

andrewbroad
Dec 19th, 2004, 12:04 PM
why only UK? I am starting ot hate UK...
Not necessarily only UK! I saw Trans World Sport in Austria once, so it might well be televised in other countries.

--
Dr. Andrew Broad
http://www.geocities.com/andrewbroad/ (http://www.geocities.com/andrewbroad/)
http://www.geocities.com/andrewbroad/tennis/ (http://www.geocities.com/andrewbroad/tennis/)