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andrewbroad
Nov 5th, 2006, 02:48 PM
(Transworld Sport may be televised in other countries, but the details in this message are specific to the UK.)


There are four points from the Linz final between Maria Sharapova and Nadia Petrova in this week's Transworld Sport, which is repeated with sign-language at 04:10 GMT on {Wednesday night/Thursday morning} on Channel 4.

The tennis was 18 minutes into Sunday's broadcast of Transworld Sport, so I recommend 04:25 as a safe start-time for timer-record (allowing for both a premature start and shortened adverts).

The points they showed:

* Maria serving 4-5 (30/40): Maria played a fantastic spreading rally: a deep serve; a short, weak backhand; a searing crosscourt backhand that forced a weak backhand down the line from Petrova; an even more penetrating crosscourt forehand that forced Petrova to run and hit a very short forehand; and finally a laserlike off-forehand winner onto the sideline (it certainly didn't need to be so precise - especially at set-point down - but it sure was spectacular!).

Bruce Hammal: "Sharapova comes into the match in the most consistent form of her life, and after winning a tight first set, the nineteen-year-old ups her game still further."

* Petrova serving 5-7 0-2 (40/30): Serve down the middle; Maria hit a short, weak forehand return; Petrova a pedestrian crosscourt forehand; Maria crosscourt forehand down the middle; Petrova hit a forehand down the line, far from any lines; Maria crosscourt backhand; Petrova hit a short crosscourt backhand; Maria hit a backhand winner down the line and said "c'mon". Why they singled out that tentative point as a highlight is beyond me.

Bruce Hammal: "Petrova, the defending champion, has no answer for Sharapova's power and accuracy from the baseline."

* Maria serving 7-5 5-2 (30/0): A fantastic wide serve into the corner pushed Petrova outside the tramlines and forced a midcourt crosscourt forehand return, and Maria completed the one-two punch with a forehand winner down the line.

* Maria serving 7-5 5-2 (40/0): A good serve down the middle forced a slow but deep forehand return down the middle; Maria hit a deep crosscourt forehand; Petrova hit a down-the-line forehand just wide & just long. Maria raised her arms in triumph and yelled "yeah" in a high-pitched voice.


At the end of the episode is a preview of a Tomáš Berdych documentary to be televised in next week's Transworld Sport (Sunday 12th November at 07:00 GMT on Channel 4).

Describing it as "a love-match in the Czech Republic", the preview shows footage of Tomáš and his girlfriend Lucie Šafářová: the two of them standing back to back, then kissing, then walking down a road holding hands, then Lucie hitting a forehand, a serve and two backhands, then the two of them playing basketball, where Lucie gropes Tomáš's face with her right hand just before scoring a goal with her left - I believe that's a foul! ;)

The preview is 51 minutes into this week's Transworld Sport, so I recommend 04:55 as a safe start-time for timer-record.

And for those who want to record the Linz highlights separately from the Tomáš and Lucie preview, I recommend 04:34 as a safe stop-time for the former (it finishes 19 minutes into the programme, but Transworld Sport has been known to start up to 5 minutes late).


While I'm on the subject of Lucie Šafářová, there is an interview with her in the current (November 2006) issue of British tennis-magazine Ace (p.74). She has an older sister, Veronika Šafářová, who played on the ITF circuit in 1993-1995.

--
Dr. Andrew Broad
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andrewbroad
Nov 14th, 2006, 09:23 PM
(Transworld Sport may be televised in other countries, but the details in this message are specific to the UK.)


There is a six-minute documentary about Tomáš Berdych and Lucie Šafářová in this week's Transworld Sport, which is repeated with sign-language at 04:30 GMT on {Wednesday night/Thursday morning} on Channel 4.

It was 21 minutes into Sunday's broadcast of Transworld Sport, so I recommend 04:50 as a safe start-time for timer-record.

Some of you may also wish to catch the first minute of the programme, where Tomáš and Lucie appear in the intro - please note that Transworld Sport has been known to start up to five minutes late, so if you want to record it in two blocks, I recommend 04:29 to 04:36 for the first block.

The documentary is set in Prostějov, where there is a tennis-club from which 21-year-old Tomáš and 19-year-old Lucie are "the latest generation of talent to graduate".

Her first name is pronounced "lootsEE-ah", but they were pronouncing her surname "saf-Ah-rov-Ah", instead of "shaf-Ah-rov-Ah" with a rolled 'r'.

The interviews were in Czech, with English voiceovers (I hate the way they talk over the players instead of using subtitles):

Lucie: "I really like Tomáš's style of play. He has a fantastic serve. I only wish I could borrow it from time to time! He also has an amazing forehand, and from the back of the court, he has to be one of the world's best players."

Tomáš: "Lucie is very hard-working, and she's also extremely focused on her tennis. She's very driven on the court - both in practice and match-play. She's someone with exceptional determination, who never gives up. So I'd say it's her work-ethic and her 'never say die' attitude that make her stand out."

They showed some footage of Lucie and Tomáš hitting together - with particular emphasis on Lucie's footwork. They then departed from Lucie to discuss Tomáš's place and prospects in a men's tennis currently dominated by Federer and Nadal.

They returned to Lucie with a very nice profile-shot of her drinking smilingly from a waterbottle as Tomáš did likewise, and then showed them playing basketball together.

Lucie: "There has to be a certain degree of flexibility in any relationship. Because we're both tennis-players, we understand the particular demands of this profession, such as the training and the travelling. We also understand that, at the moment, our first priority has to be tennis, but we both make the effort to see each other as much as possible at tournaments - or at least to keep in touch by 'phone. It's obviously very difficult, but where there's a will, there's a way."

They then showed Lucie and Tomáš walking down a road together, holding hands.

Sue Carpenter: "As Berdych and Šafářová strive to fulfill their ambitions on the tour, the first couple of Czech tennis continue to play out a perfect love-match off the court."

Lucie: "It would be wonderful if we both managed to succeed and get to the top, and at the same time keep our relationship going, so that we can continue living together."

The documentary is followed by highlights of the ATP Paris (Davydenko v Hrbatý) and WTA Hasselt (Clijsters v Kanepi) finals.

--
Dr. Andrew Broad
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