I won't have the opportunity to report everyday, but whenever I'll have access to a computer, I'll try to report you a few things.
this is actually my first time at swisscom challenge, so everything was pretty exciting for me. apart from the hot dogs. I expected an empty hall at midday, but there were already a lot of people, probably because it was a typical sunday in autumn, rather grey and boring. it was good to see people were really interested and discussing stuff like henin's loss to casanova in the lobby. they even fought for the balls amanda tossed into the crowd at the end of her match!
ah yeah, amanda. she seemed really cool throughout the match against farina-elia, even when hopelessly behind in the first set. it was some classic, smart tennis from these two veterans. amanda was just the more constant player, but silvia definitely had her chances, the games were always rather long, the score of the second set could definitely have been much closer.
smashnova vs. rubin, I didn't know what to expect of this match. rubin has been lauded so much recently, and rightly so, while smashnova showed she can win lots of lower tier tournis, but usually doesn't go very far into the tournament at tier I's, not to mention grand slams. and the first game seemed to set the pace: chanda broke anna right away with an impressing game. but then chanda seemed somewhat rusty, probably because she hadn't played in quite a while, and anna gave her lots of trouble, chanda never found her rhythm, making mistakes, while anna was all over the court with her swinging arms and fast legs, virtually using her whole body when hitting the ball. she stayed pretty aggressive ( I was surprised about that, because she's always described as a counterpuncher), while chanda seemed rather clueless.
the hall was packed when maleeva and MGM entered, and it was obvious this was the match that everyone had been waiting for. mikaelian had her big break this time last year, and certainly wanted to do well in front of her home crowd (there were lots of people who had travelled from the french part of switzerland to zurich). but maggie can be supertough, as we saw recently, and it was expected that mikaelian wouldn't prevail as easily as she did the last time these two had met (at quebec). it has do be said that both players have a real presence on the court, while almost always staying really calm. mikaelian was the dominant player, she can produce so much power - what a difference to the other matches! but then again, she's very error-prone and losing so many key points, plus her serve is very up and down. she was really happy to win the 1st set, and when she was up 3:1 in the second, everything seemed clear for her - but maggie fought back, winning 5 straight games. unfortunately, I couldn't stay to watch the 3rd set, but was really happy to find out that MGM won the third set and the match.
hopefully more later.
ciao for now!
Oct 13th, 2002, 06:49 PM
thanks Beat for your lines.
Congrats Marie-Gaiane !
Plz post a daily report, Beat. I'm esp interested in Dani's, Alyona's and Jelena's performance(s). ;)
Oct 13th, 2002, 07:53 PM
Thanks Beat for this report :D
Oct 14th, 2002, 10:36 AM
Thanks a lot Beat! :D
Oct 14th, 2002, 10:40 AM
Oct 14th, 2002, 11:41 AM
thanks Beat, it is so nice to see so many people come to see atournament so early
Oct 14th, 2002, 01:29 PM
Merci viu mau Beat!!
You're reports are very much appreciated.
Oct 14th, 2002, 02:16 PM
did you see stevenson yet?
Oct 14th, 2002, 05:30 PM
Oct 14th, 2002, 06:17 PM
Thanx Beat! :)
Oct 14th, 2002, 11:21 PM
hi, it's me again.
it was a nice evening again, apart from having to sit next to 3 businessmen in grey suits with long faces, never applauding the players. not once.
the hall was packed again for the 2nd swiss player to play in zurich: myriam casanova. her opponent was 13 years older and 13 years more experienced: conchita martinez. I was afraid before the match that myriam would again have lots of trouble with an old-fashioned style like conchita's, and that's exactly what happened. myriam is always so full of energy, there's a real fire burning there. but today she definitely had "young-upstart-syndrome": putting on pressure, pushing, attacking, but over-hitting so often. conchita took all her time (e.g. she was never ready to receive serve when myriam was ready to serve) and stayed cool. actually she was a little bit annoying when serving, because she always had to be given at least 4 balls before she picked one that was "good enough" for her. she also seemed quite harsh to the ballboys and ballgirls. I must say, for some reason she looked bitter. whatever, she was in control of the match and myriam didn't seem to have any game plan and really struggled with conchita's sliced backhands, didn't return well, plus maybe the expectations were too high (especially from myriam herself).
jelena dokic then proved that you can bang bang bang and still be very precise. she doesn't always do it, but she certainly did it today. she was so much the opposite of conchita, totally in a hurry, like the match was some kind of business that she wanted to get over and done with. but that can translate into her game as well, and it did today in a positive way; when iva majoli hit hard and close to the baseline, the ball came back harder and even closer to the baseline. the first set was a one-sided affair, over in 25 minutes, iva never had the time to set up her strokes, she was always a little bit slow. the second set was much closer. both players served well and held service up to 4:4. then iva had a little lapse, got broken and that was that. i must admit, jelena was impressive, with her swooshing sounds and everything.
i stayed for 2 sets of the doubles match as well, because i couldn't see dementieva's match vs. angelika roesch. oops sorry, it was anca barna, or else she wouldn't have reached the 2nd round ;)
and i really wanted to watch this lovely russian girl. the first 5 games were all breaks, everyone was serving horribly. it was mostly jelena's fault that the pairing dementieva/husarova didn't win easily, because everyone picked up their serving (more or less), apart form jelena: so many double faults, really it was quite astonishing to see this tall girl serve so badly. people often say that it's a mental problem, but i thought that it was quite obvious that her serving is also technically inadequate. pick it up, girl! husarova was probably the best player: good lops and some amazing passing shots while zvereva was astonishingly bad when volleying. i had to leave when po and zvereva had won the 2nd set.
ah, before i forget: there's also this on-site-newspaper, and they always have some entertaining information in there. e.g. did you know that conchita martinez speaks german? or that maggie maleeva's favourite movies are "festen" and "magnolia" (she's got good taste, this girl). and there's a really funny picture of jelena bovina's mother margarita, asleep on a bench. i have to scan that sometime for you.
i returned home with gorillaz on my walkman ("I'm happy, I'm feeling glad ...")... oh but then something freaky happened: this woman came up to me on the street and asked me if I knew someone called "jeanette müller". i was rather perplexed and said no, why do you ask? and she said: she's my doppelganger, and she's got all my papers. (this one's true, really, it is)
there's some strange people out there...
i say goodnight....
Oct 14th, 2002, 11:48 PM
thanks again :)
Oct 15th, 2002, 12:47 AM
Thanks, that was very entertaining.
Oct 15th, 2002, 09:44 AM
Myriam, :sad: she lacks experience
Jelena :bounce: from what you siad she played very well, keep it up girl!
Oct 15th, 2002, 01:49 PM
Hope todays report will be positive again.
Oct 15th, 2002, 03:47 PM
Thanx again Beat :)
Oct 15th, 2002, 03:54 PM
Oct 15th, 2002, 03:57 PM
Thanks beat!!!:D I love Myriam. Too bad she lost. :sad:
Oct 15th, 2002, 07:12 PM
Hope you'll be there to cheer Amanda on again. Thanx for the report... I followed the scores on the Net and it was very long and tiring (I had a headache at the middle of the first set)
Oct 15th, 2002, 07:14 PM
Maggie loves Festen and Magnolia? And she has fab taste in music too, Bjork and Asian Dub Foundation. I think I love that girl. :hearts:
Anyway, thanks Beat for the reports. Very good reads.
Oct 15th, 2002, 07:20 PM
Enjoyable reads! Thanks! :)
Oct 15th, 2002, 07:41 PM
Once again thanks for that vivid report. Never expected Jelena to win it this way.
Looking forward with heavy heartbeats for the next one, Beat (and Jelena)! :kiss:
Oct 15th, 2002, 09:26 PM
re-reading my posts, I realized I was calling dementieva and bovina "jelena" instead of "elena". I ALWAYS get confused, sorry.
anyway, here's my report for tuesday:
the first match of the day was a very good one: stevenson vs. sugiyama. alexandra wasn't half as annoying as I expected her to be, and - gosh - i really enjoyed watching her. she screamed in frustration now and then - but not very much. that said, she's still the queen of not very nice handshakes.
alex's serve really is very big. it worked today, and she backed it up with some good groundstrokes, especially some wonderful backhand shots. ai didn't play badly neither, this made it a really enjoyable match. i actually think ai is a very good athlete, considering her height, but the play was fast and she couldn't quite keep up. ai took a lead in the second, when alexandra suddenly became very slow and without any power, even moonballing a couple of times. but that was only momentary, after this low she marched through to end the match in 2 sets.
then i watched the doubles match between ruano-pascual/suarez and davenport/rubin. two very different pairings (is this expression correct?), one obviously a well-oiled, four-legged doubles machine, having played so much together, and the chemistry truly is there. the other consisting of 2 exceptional singles players. i think the reason davenport/rubin won in straight sets was the serving: rather good (as you'd expect) from lindsay, very, very poor from paola. it was a pity, because as a doubles team i thought ruano/suarez showed us more and were more entertaining. it was also a pity that at the end of the first set, the following happened: paola ran fast to catch a drop shot and reached it, but the umpire said the ball had bounced twice, cue lots of protesting from both paola and virginia. two points later, they had lost the set.
btw/ no 1, 2 and 3 in doubles are out!
i was rather disappointed by raymond-myskina. i only saw the first two sets, but I thought both played rather poorly. myskina's serve, especially the 2nd, truly is amazingly bad. i found her play to be rather boring; sure, she has decent enough groundstrokes, is very solid form the baseline, but there's no real imagination, nor some kind of "handwriting" to be seen. it's very common tennis, if you know what i mean. that said, lisa wasn't at her best, neither, though she really had her chances (which, in the 2nd set, she obviously took). lots of mistakes form her, and not very convincing netplay neither.
then i had to go, but later caught patty schnyder's fabulous win vs. chladkova on TV. well done!
hope you enjoy my reports ...
... and bye, ...
Oct 16th, 2002, 01:40 AM
Oct 16th, 2002, 04:01 AM
Oct 16th, 2002, 04:44 AM
Thanks for the reports :)
Oct 16th, 2002, 05:02 AM
thanks - always nice to read personal insights to the events!
Oct 16th, 2002, 05:22 AM
Thanks Beat :)
Looking forward to your report for Alex and Jelena! :)
Oct 16th, 2002, 06:54 AM
Thanks for the reports:D
Oct 16th, 2002, 08:08 AM
Keep em coming Beat!!
Oct 16th, 2002, 08:23 AM
thanks for the reports, Beat!
Oct 16th, 2002, 09:42 AM
Oct 16th, 2002, 09:57 AM
thanx for the reports :)
Oct 16th, 2002, 10:28 AM
Oct 16th, 2002, 10:32 AM
thanks we really appreciate your reports! :)
Oct 16th, 2002, 10:33 AM
Thanks for those reports :D
Oct 16th, 2002, 10:36 AM
thanks beat-like your style :)
Oct 16th, 2002, 10:58 AM
Thanks a lot for the reports, keep them coming!:)
Oct 16th, 2002, 10:58 AM
Thanx for the reports!
Oct 16th, 2002, 12:27 PM
Oct 16th, 2002, 01:45 PM
Yes, the reports were enjoyed again! :) Thanks again!
Oct 16th, 2002, 02:05 PM
Thanks Beat for the great reports! They are appreciated!
Oct 16th, 2002, 02:59 PM
Thanks Beat! Could you say anything about how Natasha Zvereva is playing? Are she & Kim Po playing well together? Does she still look rusty? Are the pigails back?
Oct 16th, 2002, 03:50 PM
Thank you for great reports :)!
Oct 16th, 2002, 07:09 PM
just two matches for me today, because I've caught a terrible cold, and should stay in bed actually... but what the hell, there were still some players I craved to see...
martinez - capriati: you probably went "huh?" when you saw the result. I was very much "huh"-ing during the match. something is definitely wrong with jennifer. she wasn't being aggressive, she moved badly, she hit the ball to the middle of the field very often. on the other hand, conchita continued her surprising performance: she played very smartly, mixed things up a lot and - above all - covered the court fabulously. and when someone was being aggressive, her name was conchita.
there was a little shock at the beginning of the 2nd set, something was wrong with jennifer's foot and she had to take an injury time-out. i was certain she'd give up, but no, she continued (that's really to her credit) and even played slightly better. also i must mention here that jennifer behaved extremely well-mannered, she didn't curse, she didn't argue with the umpire, she didn't scream. yes, she seemed passive. which adds up to a very strange picture, doesn't it?
then it was justine's turn, and her performance was almost flawless. i loved to watch her, she has such a unique game. and make no mistake: this is a very athletic and powerful player, even though she's not tall (also smashnova looked very fit). she has the ability to play with lots of power, but still add so many different things to that power. it was a joy. anna meanwhile turned out to be so much less aggressive than she was against rubin, for the simple fact that she just didn't have the chance to. it was a very big gap, and you could really see the difference between "the worker" and "the talent" or whatever you wanna call it.
i would have loved to stay to watch MGM vs. myskina and also lindsay, but i was feeling very bad at that point and just couldn't make it anymore, sorry.
thanks for your reactions and
p.s. saki: no pigtails for natasha this time. she didn't exactly look rusty, but to be honest, she didn't really convince me neither, she had such poor netplay, which really surprised me. but as I said, I didn't watch the 3rd set, maybe by that time she was getting going.
Oct 16th, 2002, 07:28 PM
Thanks for the report, the passiveness suprised me while watching it on TV, see you picked up on that too.
Oct 16th, 2002, 07:51 PM
Hope you'll be cheering for Amanda tomorrow! Enjoying your reports...
Oct 16th, 2002, 07:54 PM
1) Jennifer Doesn't Play Well on Indoor Courts
2) Jennifer hasn't had any Indoor Court warm ups, and hadn't gotten use to the court yet.
3) Jens been ill recently and hasn't played much
4) Jennifer doesn't cope well with spins, and having a oppenent like Martinez in her firs round who spins the ball all over the place and dicates points isn't going to suit Jens style.
Well Played Martinex though.
1) Jen coped very well with the defeat.
2) Postive things, Jens ankle didn't seem too bad, as she carried on playing on it.
3) Jen has a new stance for serving. Sticks her back leg out quite a way before leaning into the serve.
4) Jens ball toss has imrpoved, no as much to the right, but still had a fw dodgey ones today.
5) Looked in good shape, very fit and was moving well after her njury.
Lets see what she does about Linz.
Oct 16th, 2002, 08:20 PM
Chris, I love you for that post (all 3 of them ;))- put it in the Den, cheer us up :)
Oct 16th, 2002, 10:07 PM
Thanks as usual.
Oct 16th, 2002, 10:15 PM
Oct 17th, 2002, 03:57 AM
Thanks for the reports, Beat.
I hope you wake up feeling better tomorrow.
Oct 17th, 2002, 08:11 AM
merci Beat u gueti Besserig!!
Just too bad you couldn't stay for the MGM match!! Gee did it look bad for her at the beginning. But the girl keep fighting and won!!
Oct 17th, 2002, 09:50 AM
merci Beat! :D
Hope you're feeling better with your cold.
Please do watch Jelena's match. I would love to hear how she played.
Oct 17th, 2002, 09:53 AM
wynne and Janet are going to win for the opening match today!
Oct 17th, 2002, 10:56 AM
Hope you're feeling better today, Beat!
Oct 17th, 2002, 12:11 PM
Great reports, Beat
Oct 18th, 2002, 10:49 AM
thanks for your best wishes. indeed i feel much better again. seems i'm not the only one with a cold, because i read an interview with the tournament doctor, and he said that half of the players had a cold, and that some of them would be better off staying in bed for a couple of days.
anyway here's my report from thursday:
it was again time to watch a doubles match: rubin/davenport vs. henin/bovina. i was happy to have the possibilty to watch bovina, not knowing that she'd later get the chance to play singles as a lucky loser. henin was all dressed in white, can you believe it? otherwise she seemed very serious, she and her partner hardly talked during changeovers, the complete opposite of rubin/davenport, who chatted during changeovers like they were at some cocktail-party, lindsay with her legs crossed like she was waiting to get served some champagne. very funny.
it was a close match, but i have no doubt that lindsay would have won with a different partner, chanda was really weak, similar to her singles match against smashnova. she seemed a little slow and she never knew what to do with the ball, plus lots of errors from her. it was lindsay who did all the work. but henin and bovina seemed quite concentrated and especially elena was really into the match and put a lot of heart into it.
in the second set rubin/davenport took a 5:2 lead, but then it was chanda's turn to serve... and unsurprisingly she couldn't hold. henin/bovina raised their game again from there on and won all the remaining games. it was a lovley match.
the next match (dementieva - hantuchova) was a little bit like the movie "titanic": very long, quite (melo)dramatic, but ultimately just not very good. if i had never seen hantuchova, i'd have thought: why on earth is this girl in the top 10? any other player would have thrashed her today. but her opponent being elena dementieva, dani just had to hang in there and get through somehow. which was what she did, and she really proved something today, she called the match one of her most important ones. she made so many unforced errors, it was incredible, plus elena returned very well. on the other hand, elena's serve let her down again. she made at least one df per game, it was just painful. elena was up 5:3, 40:15 in the 2nd set, and what did she do? she double faulted. she held another matchpoint later and - oh yes - double faulted again! i expected a 6:0 set from daniela in the 3rd, but elena fortunately fought hard. but it didn't help, she lost antoher tie-break and was utterly destroyed after match. i really felt for her.
clijsters - coetzer: there's not much to say about this match, it was so one-sided. kim is in good form, and all kim-fans can have high hopes right now, i think. there were a few close games, and a few beautiful ralleys, with amanda just getting everything back. but against kim this was of course not enough. i left after the first set (6:1), expecting kim to win this one easily, which she did.
m!ssundaztooD, i'm sorry i can't report from alex vs. jelena. blame it on daniela and elena, their match was just sooooooo long (almost 3 hours).
now I'm off for the next matches. bye!
Oct 18th, 2002, 10:53 AM
Oct 18th, 2002, 10:55 AM
:) Merci Beat. Glad you're feeling much better.
:( too bad about Jelena's match. It would have been lovely if you found out Dani vs Elena wass better than Jelena vs Alex. Have fun today! :D
Oct 18th, 2002, 12:57 PM
Dani was playing that badly? At least she prooved something to me: that she can win even when she is playing horrible tennis. Just like most of the elite players.
Oct 18th, 2002, 01:06 PM
Originally posted by mboyle
Dani was playing that badly? At least she prooved something to me: that she can win even when she is playing horrible tennis. Just like most of the elite players.
exactly. it was just one of those matches you have to pull through. the great ones can do it, playing crappily and still winning. and so did daniela yesterday. though I must add that the 3rd set was better than the 1st and 2nd.
oh, and I forgot: kim was wearing a horrible headband, like she wanted to join bon jovi. the bon jovi of 1985, that is. ;)
Oct 18th, 2002, 04:32 PM
thanks beat! it's good to hear something about natasha even if it isn't all positive...
Oct 19th, 2002, 07:07 PM
i couldn't report yesterday, but here I am again.
schnyder - martinez: the hall was packed, of course, and the atmosphere was incredible. patty played a really smart match - unlike casanova, capriati and stevenson befor her, she knew she had to be patient and not attack too much. still i was surprised when she won the first set 6:0. but tennis in general and especially patty can be so unpredictable, i wasn't sure at all she'd win this easily. when patty got broken in the first game of the 2nd set, i feared the worst. but she remained calm and concentrated and after 3 all, she took this one home. conchita was playing moonballs all the time, it was not a pretty sight. she did this in her other matches as well, but not quite as often! any wiiliams-fan would have had a heart attack watching this match, it was so slow and old-fashioned. people started even booing a little bit at conchita when she did it for the 100th time. oh, and can someone give conchita a new pair of panties, because in all her matches she had to "adjust" them constantly... ;)
and then, as monty python would have it, for something completely different. after yesterday's disappointing match against clijsters, where both kim and lindsay played badly, i hoped to see a better performance from lindsay. and that's what i got. also justine was playing well, but lindsay was dominant in the beginning, though the score remained tight. lindsay served way better than yesterday and she seemed like the sure winner of this match. but at 5:4 (breakpoint henin) she double faulted! she then won the tie-break pretty easily (7:2). after that she had treatment on her foot. justine was up 4:1 in the 2nd, when lindsay called for the physiotherapist again. it was strange, she seemed really in pain, so at that stage she seemed to think: o.k. i can't move properly,so every shot has to be crystal-clear. from that moment on she played much better again.
i just read in other threads that justine accused lindsay that she had exaggerated. maybe, but justine seemed to rely on her expectation that lindsay would retire, and that was a big mistake. she lost, and it was her own fault.
i also watched a little bit of petrova/dokic vs. lee/prakusya. petrova/dokic were in total control and after 28 minutes it was already 6:1, 3:1.
let's hope for a great final tomorrow.
greetings from zurich: beat
Oct 19th, 2002, 07:20 PM
tx a lot beat!
Oct 19th, 2002, 07:29 PM
Thanks for the reports :)
Oct 20th, 2002, 01:22 AM
Thanks a lot Beat! I've enjoyed reading these reports!
You've seen both Bovina/Henin and Dokic/Petrova this week...who was the more impressive? Who do u think will win the doubles title? I hope jelena/nadia can take the title, but I am worried :( :(
Oct 20th, 2002, 09:12 AM
Thanks a lot Beat :)
Oct 20th, 2002, 06:20 PM
so, now it's all over... and what a final it was! with martina hingis missing, nobody expected a swiss finalist, let alone a swiss winner!
the match was awesome. one thing that is for certain is that patty was in great physical condition, she moved very well and ran very fast. from the beginning she hang in there and took her chances. davenport served brilliantly in the beginning, so it was really exciting. patty had set points in the first set, lindsay was serving, it was 4:5, 0:40, but there was nothing patty could do, lindsay played brilliantly during that phase of the match. lindsay then won her 3rd tie-break in a row.
the beginning of the 2nd set wasn't all that impressive. both players made lots of UE's, and suddenly patty's negativity broke through again. i thought that was the beginning of the end, but boy, was i wrong! patty broke for a 2:1 lead, but got broken back immediately. from then on, lindsay had rather easy serving games, she was again serving very well. but patty surprised us all with her mental strength and forced another tie-break. she had set point at 6:5! the hall was boiling! another set-point at 8:7! people were screaming! and finally she made it: 10:8!!! i almost had a heart attack, it was so exciting.
in the 3rd set, schnyder broke to go up 3:1, but again got broken back immediately. but she didn't lose concetration, waited for lindsay's mistakes and took her chances.
i'm sure the audience helped patty a lot, they really carried her to this win, her 8th title (if i'm not mistaken) and possibly her biggest yet.
the ceremony was lovely, lindsay charming in her interview as ever. congrats to both players.
i also stayed for the doubles final. and martinafan, you were right to be worried: bovina and henin won, and deservedly so. once again it was bovina who seemed the most enthusiastic player, by the end of the match she was screaming her lungs out! petrova meanwhile didn't serve well all the time, while dokic sometimes tried her usual hard-hitting, with all those low balls, which in doubles might not be the best shot... but it was a good match and a perfect ending to a great week for me.
i hope you all enjoyed my reports. :wavey:
Oct 20th, 2002, 06:32 PM
Hope we will have you around next year to ;)
Oct 20th, 2002, 06:33 PM
thanks for all the great reports Beat!!!!!!
Oct 20th, 2002, 07:03 PM
thanx for the reports :)
Oct 20th, 2002, 09:45 PM
Thanks for all the excellent reports Beat! :)
Oct 21st, 2002, 03:26 AM
Great reporting Beat :)
Oct 21st, 2002, 09:34 AM
merci beat! :D hope you really had fun! :D
Oct 21st, 2002, 11:35 AM
Marci viu mau Beat.
Great reports. Wish I could have been there too. But I had something else to do.