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andrewbroad
Jul 19th, 2008, 12:02 AM
=================
THE CHAMPIONSHIPS (Wimbledon, England; grass; Grand Slam)
================= http://www.wimbledon.org/
Contents
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1. Photos
2. First-round TV-report: Ivanović v de los Ríos

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1. Photos
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Ana Ivanović:
http://news.search.yahoo.com/search/news/?c=news_photos&p=ivanovic
http://www.wimbledon.org/en_GB/players/wta311710.html

Pre-Wimbledon Party including Ana:
http://www.sonyericssonwtatour.com/2/photogallery/?Event=wimbledon_party

Week 1 photos including Ana:
http://www.sonyericssonwtatour.com/2/photogallery/?Event=wimbledon

Wimbledon Fashions including Ana:
http://www.sonyericssonwtatour.com/2/photogallery/?Event=wimbledon_fashions

Day 1 photos including Ana:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/tennis/7469452.stm

Many players (Ana in Monday 23rd June, Wednesday 25th June, Friday 27th June):
http://sports.yahoo.com/ten/gallery?pg=1&cap=1

Search Getty Images for "ivanovic"

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4. First-round TV-report: Ivanović v de los Ríos (Monday 23rd June)
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+ ANA IVANOVIĆ [1,DF] d. Rossana de los Ríos, 6-1 6-2

A delightful performance by Ana, though it could have been even more one-sided, had she not thrown in a sloppy return-game at 3-0*.


First set
---------
IV *@* *@* 6
DE ___*___ 2

The match started at 14:44 BST, and I saw it all on BBC 1.

Ana serving 0-0: Ana hit an off-backhand winner on the third stroke. 15/0. Ana ran down a dropshot, hit a forehand high over the net, and de los Ríos knocked off a crosscourt backhand volley-winner into the corner. 15/15. De los Ríos dead netcord-winner. 15/30. Ana hit a sweet backhand winner down the line: on the baseline. 30/30. Service-winner. 40/30. Ana netted a forehand off a deep return. 40/40. De los Ríos just long - but she challenged it, and it caught about 5% of the baseline! They replayed the point: de los Ríos /did/ hit it long. Ad Ana. Double fault (second serve just long). Deuce #2. A fantastic point with them both at the net ended with Ana punching a crosscourt backhand volley-winner past de los Ríos. Ad Ana. She painted the sideline with a crosscourt backhand winner.

De los Ríos is one of the oldest players on the WTA Tour at 32, and her daughter is already 11!

De los Ríos serving 0-1: Ana netted a backhand on the fourth stroke. 15/0. De los Ríos earthed a horrendous backhand. 15/15. Ana crosscourt forehand winner. 15/30. Ana netted a backhand. 30/30. De los Ríos earthed a sliced backhand off one from Ana. 30/40. Ana hit a deep off-forehand return to the centre of the baseline, forcing de los Ríos to earth yet another backhand.

Ana serving 2-0: Ana ran around her backhand to hit a beautiful forehand winner down de los Ríos's forehand-sideline. 15/0. De los Ríos backhand return long. 30/0. Ana forced a short lob from de los Ríos, and dispatched it with an easy high forehand winner crosscourt. 40/0. Ana netted a forehand on the third stroke. 40/15. Service-winner down the middle.

Tracy Austin commented on how Ana was carrying a few extra pounds a couple of years ago, but is much trimmer now thanks to her fitness-trainer Scott Byrnes.

De los Ríos serving 0-3: De los Ríos netted a forehand on the third stroke. 0/15. Ana hit a pinpoint crosscourt forehand return-winner right in the corner. 0/30. Ana netted an off-backhand return off an awkward body-jamming serve. 15/30. Ana dumped a backhand return into the net. 30/30. Ana hit a down-the-line backhand just wide, and wasted a challenge. 40/30. Ana dumped a backhand into the net.

A sloppy game by Ana after a near-perfect start.

Ana serving 3-1: Double fault (second serve just long). 0/15. Serve + error-forcing crosscourt forehand drive-volley. 15/15. Ana hit a lovely smooth error-forcing crosscourt backhand onto the sideline. 30/15. De los Ríos hit a "superb" crosscourt backhand winner back behind Ana. 30/30. Body-jamming serve: de los Ríos earthed a backhand return. 40/30. Ace out wide.

De los Ríos serving 1-4: Ana, driven outside the tramlines, hit a pinpoint forehand winner down the line, onto the sideline. 0/15. De los Ríos sprayed a backhand wide - just too much power from Ana for her to handle. 0/30. De los Ríos played a lovely spreading rally, forcing Ana to chop back a forehand, then hit a defensive backhand lob long. 15/30. De los Ríos netted a forehand. 15/40. De los Ríos dominated the rally and came to the net, but Ana hit a pinpoint forehand pass-winner down the line.

Ana serving 5-1: De los Ríos netted a backhand. 15/0. Double fault (second serve into the net). 15/15. De los Ríos backhand return long. 30/15. De los Ríos sprayed a backhand wide. 40/15 (SP #1). De los Ríos sprayed a wild forehand return wide. Ana won the first set 6-1 at 15:09 (25 minutes).


Second set
----------
IV _*@* *@* 6
DE *___*___ 2

De los Ríos serving 0-0: De los Ríos sprayed a wild backhand very long & wide. 0/15. Ana hit a forehand just long - off a moonball from de los Ríos. 15/15. De los Ríos's mishit off-forehand drive-volley forced Ana into error - two extreme angles from de los Ríos in that point. 30/15. Ana netted a backhand return. 40/15. De los Ríos netted a backhand. 40/30. A deep serve from de los Ríos induced Ana to mishit a backhand return into the net.

Ana serving 0-1: Service-winner. 15/0. Ana cracked a huge crosscourt backhand winner. 30/0. Ana opened up the court and hit a forehand winner down de los Ríos's forehand-sideline. 40/0. Ana came to the net and hit a delectable backhand drop-volley winner.

De los Ríos serving 1-1: De los Ríos crosscourt backhand wide. 0/15. De los Ríos hit a pinpoint crosscourt forehand winner into the corner. 15/15. Ana off-forehand winner. 15/30. Ana pulled de los Ríos wide, forcing her to hit a down-the-line forehand into the tramlines. 15/40. Ana sliced a backhand return into the net. 30/40. De los Ríos hit a down-the-line backhand wide to give Ana the first break of the second set.

Ana serving 2-1: A lovely net-rally ended with Ana hitting a backhand pass-winner down the line. 15/0. De los Ríos opened up the court and hit a crosscourt forehand winner. 15/15. De los Ríos netted a sliced backhand off a deep ball from Ana. 30/15. Ana hit a backhand virtual winner down the line. 40/15. De los Ríos netted a forehand return.

De los Ríos serving 1-3: Ana netted a backhand return. 15/0. De los Ríos netted a forehand. 15/15. Ana netted a forehand. 30/15. Ana ran down a dropshot, but hit a forehand wide with a cute little moan. 40/15. Ana forehand return just long.

I could do with Ana finishing this match before Fernando González (7-6 7-5 4-4) to avoid a clash with Anna Chakvetadze's match.

Ana serving 3-2: De los Ríos backhand wide. 15/0. Serve out wide + crosscourt backhand winner back behind de los Ríos. 30/0. Ace down the middle just clipped the service-line (de los Ríos used up a challenge). 40/0. Ana netted a forehand after running down a dropshot in plenty of time - got too close to it. 40/15. De los Ríos off-backhand winner. 40/30. De los Ríos hit a forehand smash virtual winner after some great retrieving by Ana.

De los Ríos serving 2-4: 0/15. She forced Ana to hit a forehand lob just wide. 15/15. Ana blasted a forehand return wide. 30/15. De los Ríos netted a backhand on the third stroke. 30/30. An important point for de los Ríos, and she hit a backhand long. 30/40 (BP). Ana netted a backhand. 40/40. Double fault #1 (second serve long). Ad Ana (BP #2). She dominated the point, came to the net, and dealt with a skyscraper-lob by running backwards to hit a forehand smash-winner.

Ana serving 5-2: Service-winner out wide. 15/0. De los Ríos forehand long. 30/0. De los Ríos netted a forehand return. 40/0 (MP #1). De los Ríos saved it in style by blasting a forehand return-winner down Ana's forehand-sideline. 40/15 (MP #2). Ana dumped a forehand halfway up the net. 40/30 (MP #3). Ace out wide? It looked well in, but de los Ríos challenged it and it was wide!! So they replayed the point, and de los Ríos sprayed a forehand wide. Ana won 6-1 6-2 at 15:42 (second set 33 minutes, match 58 minutes).

Barry Davies: "And the ladies once again setting an example to the men by coming off together."


Ana: "It was amazing. The atmosphere was really good for a first-round match. I really hope I can stick around for some time. It definitely gives me confidence, and this is obviously the tournament everyone wants to win. My goal since I was a little kid was to win a Grand Slam, so it gives me confidence.

"I think I played quite well today, considering it's the first match. Especially first match on the grass. It's quite a big change, but I was very happy to be back on Centre Court. Today's match was a tough one... I had to stay focused. I served really well, and that's something that really help me. I was quite aggressive, so I was pleased with the way I played."


Articles
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Ivanović off to a flyer
Written by Ronald Atkin (www.wimbledon.org (http://www.wimbledon.org))
>>>
Ladies' Day is traditionally on the first Tuesday of the Championships, when the defending women's champion opens proceedings on Centre Court. As a prelude, the showcase-court was today treated to an impressive display from the sport's current leading lady, Ana Ivanović, who ran out a 6-1 6-2 victor over Rosanna de los Ríos.

The number-one seed's victory was achieved in a fashion that underlines why Ivanović has taken over as world number-one since the unexpected retirement of Justine Henin.

The progress of the statuesque 20-year-old Serb has been steady over the past 13 months. An easy loser to Henin in the 2007 French Open final, she went out to eventual champion Venus Williams at the Wimbledon semi-final stage last year. After a fourth-round exit at the US Open, Ivanović began 2008 in rousing fashion, reaching the Australian Open final, before making her Grand Slam breakthrough at Roland Garros three weeks ago.

Seeking back-to-back Grand Slams at Wimbledon, she got off to an impressive start against the 32-year-old Paraguayan.

De los Ríos, whose 11-year-old daughter was watching her mother from the players' box, sported a large patch on her right knee, and did not possess enough power of shot to threaten Ivanović.

The opening set was over in 24 minutes, and the South American's determination to make a better fight of it in the second foundered against the clean, vigorous hitting of the number-one seed.

Ivanović broke for a 2-1 second-set lead when de los Ríos looped a forehand long, and her attempts to extend the match were extinguished when Ivanović - watched by her parents, Dragana and Miroslav - broke for a 5-2 lead.

De los Ríos offered up a break-point to Ivanović when she double-faulted for the only time in the match, and then made the mistake of throwing up a lob that fell short, allowing the Serb to smash it away for a winner.

Serving for the match, Ivanović appeared to have won it with her second ace, only for the Paraguayan to challenge the validity of the shot and be proved right. But the reprieve was short-lived. On the next rally, de los Ríos hooked a forehand tamely wide, which was the cue for a victorious Ivanović to throw kisses to all corners of Centre Court.
<<<

Ivanović aims to be in the frame
Written by Kate Battersby (www.wimbledon.org (http://www.wimbledon.org))
>>>
Returning a tricky delivery is among the requisite skills of an elite tennis-player. Ana Ivanović arrived at Wimbledon newly anointed as the world number-one, with her first Grand Slam title under her belt from Roland Garros – and yet despite these laurels, few observers have the 20-year-old Serb listed as one of the favourites to lift the Venus Rosewater Dish a week on Saturday. So how quite to put this to her politely? Here's how.

"Being number-one suggests you are the best here," said one reporter after Ivanović opened her 2008 campaign by seeing off Paraguay's Rossana de los Ríos in under an hour. "Do you feel like you are the best here?"

Tactfully put. And here's how Ivanović returned the tricky delivery.

"I focus on my game, and do the best I can once I go out there," she replied with a smile. "I like to watch the other players, but I still focus on what I have to do. Every opponent can be dangerous. You really have to make sure you still work hard. Obviously, winning in Paris gives me confidence."

Ah, she's a game girl, this Ivanović. And, it must be said, a gorgeous girl too. Not only has she been the subject of a stunning and classy set of photographs published just before the Wimbledon fortnight got under way, but somehow, despite being informed at every turn how beautiful she is, she appears still to have that rather marvellous young person's quality of not quite realising it herself. She simply laughed when asked if she has spent much time lately admiring the many fabulous photographs of her appearing in assorted media just now.

"I leave that to my parents and public-relations people," she grinned. "They like to read about it. But not everybody likes reading about themselves, and I don't like it. It's obviously very flattering. Sometimes I take a peek at the picture, but that's about it."

Nonetheless, the fact is that her life has changed forever since her Roland Garros triumph. In all sports, no matter how beautiful you might be, there is a world of difference between being a runner-up for the glittering prizes – as Ivanović was at last year's French Open and this year's Australian Open – and actually capturing them. If she never won another match (not terribly likely but just as an illustration), she will still forever be introduced everywhere as the 2008 Roland Garros champion. She has joined the super-elite.

"I think I'm still basically the same person I was before the French Open," she said. "The only thing that I feel changed a bit is that I have a little more confidence. Winning a Grand Slam has been my dream since I was a kid. I was in two finals before, so making one more step and winning it is something that makes me very happy and, yes, gives me confidence."

She will need that confidence if she is to continue her winning-streak at Wimbledon. She made the semi-finals last year before losing to eventual champion Venus Williams. This year, Serena Williams seems most likely to block her way to the final, and last year's Australian Open victor is seen by many as one of the favourites for the title. But the women's tournament here is generally judged to be the most open for years, and Ivanović may yet add to her young legend before the fortnight is out.
<<<

Ivanović little troubled by De Los Rios (Reuters)
By Ori Lewis (editing by Clare Lovell)
>>>
Serbian top seed Ana Ivanović had little trouble advancing to the second round at Wimbledon, beating Rossana de los Ríos of Paraguay 6-1 6-2 in under an hour on Monday.

French Open champion Ivanović, who reached the semi-finals here last year, had far too much power for her 103rd-ranked opponent, belting winners at will from the back of the court.

Ivanović, 20, wrapped up the first set with little answer from the 32-year-old Paraguayan, her blistering groundstrokes off both sides proving too testing.

De los Ríos held her opening serve to take an early lead in
the second set, but Ivanović was never troubled.

De los Ríos, who was watched by her 11-year-old daughter Ana Paula from the players' box, prolonged the end slightly when she successfully challenged an Ivanović serve on match-point that was called an ace.

The respite was short-lived, however, and the Serbian favourite wrapped up the match to claim her place in the second round, where she will meet France's Nathalie Dechy.

"I think I played quite well today, considering it's the first match. Especially first match on the grass. It's quite a big change, but I was very happy to be back on Centre Court," Ivanović said.

"Today's match was a tough one... I had to stay focused. I served really well, and that's something that really help me. I was quite aggressive, so I was pleased with the way I played," she added.
<<<

Ivanović, Serena win at Wimbledon (PA SportsTicker)
>>>
Ana Ivanović had little trouble reaching the second round at Wimbledon. Serena Williams, on the other hand, had her hands full.

Ivanović and Williams both posted straight-set wins Monday in their opening-round matches at this year's grasscourt Grand Slam, although the victories came in contrasting fashion.

The top-seeded Ivanović coasted past Rossana de los Ríos of Paraguay 6-1 6-2, in her first appearance since winning the French Open earlier this month.

"I think I played quite well today, considering it's my first match on grass," Ivanović said. "It was great to be back on grass. It [the expectation] is very challenging for me. It's something new and exciting."

The world No.1, Ivanović admitted that she has entered this Major with unprecedented expectations.

"Coming in as the top seed means lots of people expect you to win," she said. "Becoming No.1 takes more pressure. But I see it as a positive thing. If you put yourself in a position to do something memorable, then you feel pressure."

Ivanović, who assumed the top ranking when she beat compatriot Jelena Jankovic in the French Open semi-finals, said her rise to the top had not affected her approach to the game.

"I'm still the same person," she said. "Winning a Grand Slam was a dream for me since I was a kid. I'd been in two finals before, so making one more step and winning it made me very happy and gave me confidence."

Ivanović was far from flawless on Monday, but her powerful passing-shots still proved far too good for de los Rios: the world's former top-ranked junior.

It proved a useful workout for Ivanović, and she showed no ill effects from the right-shoulder injury that forced her to withdraw prior to the start of last week's tournament in Eastbourne.

The Serbian coasted through the first set in just 23 minutes before her concentration wavered a little, allowing de los Ríos to break serve for the first time to narrow the second-set deficit to 2-3.

But normal service was soon resumed, as Ivanović broke straight back and proceeded to serve out to secure her serene passage to the second round.

The 20-year-old Ivanović next will face Nathalie Dechy of France, who defeated China's Meng Yuan in three sets.
<<<

Tennis-ace Ivanović thriving on the pressure at Wimbledon (AFP)
>>>
Ana Ivanović admitted she is thriving on the pressure of being world number-one after cruising into the second round at Wimbledon with a 6-1 6-2 victory over Rossana de los Ríos on Monday.

Ivanović, 21, arrived at the All England Club freshly installed as the top player in the women's game after her French Open triumph earlier this month, and lived up to her billing by dispatching the Paraguayan in 57 minutes.

The Serb faces France's Nathalie Dechy next, and looks in the mood to improve on last year's semi-final appearance at Wimbledon.

Ivanović is well aware opponents will raise their game against her following that success in Paris, while fans and media expect her to win every match, but she doesn't feel the extra pressure will have any negative effect.

"Obviously there are different ways of dealing with pressure. Becoming number one, it takes more pressure, but also you have to see pressure for what it is. It's a reflection of your own ambition," she said.

"If you see it as a positive thing, it means that you put yourself in a position to do something memorable, that you feel pressure. So if you look at it that way, it can be very motivating."

Winning her first Grand Slam has given Ivanović a surge of confidence that she believes could carry through to more glory at Wimbledon.

"I think I'm still basically the same person. The only thing that I feel changed a little bit: I have a little bit more confidence," she said.

"Also winning Grand Slam, it's been my dream since I was a kid. I was in two finals before, so actually making one more step and winning it, that's something that makes me very happy and gives me confidence.

"I'm more confident now, and I've got the expectation of achieving my biggest dreams and goals. That's something that it's new for me and I'm enjoying it."

Just two weeks after beating Dinara Safina to win her first Grand Slam title, Ivanović could have suffered a post-Paris hangover in south-west London.

But from the first game of the match it was apparent that, while Ivanović may not have the competely grasscourt-game yet, she has no problem imposing herself from the baseline.

She broke early after a battering the Paraguayan into submission with her blistering forehands, and never let the advantage slip to take the first set.

There was no let-up from Ivanović in the second either, and another early break was enough to ensure she was never troubled.
<<<

Ana Accelerates Into Second Round
By Tennis Week
>>>
[Ana Ivanović is playing her first event since seizing the World No.1 rank.]

Ana Ivanović has tried to turn the page on the volumes of media-attention she's received since winning Roland Garros and rising to the World No.1 ranking, but concedes she can't help but sneak a peak at the photos that accompany stories of her success.

Firing forehands with power and precision, Ivanović transformed Centre Court into a photo-op for her power-play in overwhelming Paraguay's Rossana de los Ríos 6-1 6-2 to race into the second round of Wimbledon and stretch her winning-streak to eight matches.

"I think I played quite well today, you know, considering it's the first match. Especially first match on the grass," said Ivanović, who has won 14 of her last 15 Grand Slam matches. "It's quite a big change, but I was very happy to be back on Central Court."

Embarking on her first tournament since she seized the No.1 ranking, Ivanović is encountering greater expectations with a lower sense of gravity.

"I think I'm still basically the same person. The only thing that I feel changed a little bit: I have a little bit more confidence," Ivanović said. "Also winning [a] Grand Slam, it's been my dream since I was a kid. I was in two finals before, so actually making one more step and winning it, that's something that, yeah, makes me very happy and gives me confidence. That's I think the only thing that change."

The 6-foot-1 Serbian has done extensive footwork-drills, and focused on bending lower to the ball in an effort to prepare for the transition from the slower red clay of Paris to the faster bounce of the ball on the grass of the All-England Club.

"I think I'm moving better, and I have my centre of gravity much lower, which definitely helps with the fast ball on the grass," Ivanović said. "Also placing of my serve: it's something that I worked on and can be really important here."

The 32-year-old de los Ríos represented an ideal opponent for Ivanović in that she lacks the weapons necessary to trouble the top seed, but offered moments of tenacity in compelling Ivanović into hitting several shots to conclude points. As her 11-year-old daughter watched from the player-box, de los Ríos dropped serve twice as Ivanović powered through the first set in 24 minutes.

The 2007 Wimbledon semi-finalist continued the unrelenting baseline-assault in the second set, scoring two more service-breaks to set up a second-round match with Nathalie Dechy.

Ivanović has reached the final four in four of her last five Grand Slam appearances, including three Major finals in that span, and is now adjusting to the accelerated life at the top of tennis.

"Obviously now coming especially as the top seed, lots of people, you know, just expect you to win," Ivanović said. "When you tell them, 'I still just want to play match by match,' they think it's such a cliché. You have to work hard, especially on grass. Everything is happening so fast. A lot of players can be dangerous. You have to be alerted and focused from the first point on."
<<<

Ivanović Cruises in Opener
http://www.sonyericssonwtatour.com/3/newsroom/stories/?ContentID=2367
>>>
Ana Ivanović and Serena Williams, the No.1 and No.6 seeds, had fewer worries in their openers, with Ivanović crushing Rossana de los Ríos 6-1 6-2, and Williams outhitting recent Roland Garros quarter-finalist Kaia Kanepi of Estonia 7-5 6-3.

Ivanović didn't play any warm-up tournaments on grass, but she made it all the way to the semi-finals here last year, so grass shouldn't be too difficult a transition for the Serb, who assumed the No.1 ranking after winning Roland Garros.

"I played quite well today, especially considering it's my first match of the year on grass," Ivanović said. "Today was a tough one. She started hitting the ball really well right from the start, so I had to stay focused. I served really well and played quite aggressively, and I was pleased with how the match turned out."
<<<

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

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/sharapova_vaidisova_hantuchova/

andrewbroad
Aug 5th, 2008, 10:21 PM
=================
THE CHAMPIONSHIPS (Wimbledon, England; grass; Grand Slam)
================= http://www.wimbledon.org/
Contents
--------

1. Photos
2. Second-round TV-report: Ivanović v Dechy

---------
1. Photos
---------

Day 3 photos including Ana Ivanović:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/tennis/7473310.stm

-------------------------------------------
2. Second-round TV-report: Ivanović v Dechy (Wednesday 25th June)
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+ ANA IVANOVIĆ [1,DF] d. Nathalie Dechy, 6-7 (2/7) 7-6 (7/3) 10-8

Ana loves to say, "it was amazing", and that adjective can certainly be applied to this 3h23m marathon that dominated the day!

When I saw Dechy lose 6-1 6-3 to Nicole Vaidišová at Birmingham, she looked like a weak shadow of her former self, but she played a very solid match against Ana, with very smart tennis, including some net-play.

Ana seems to go for broke all the time, which is her biggest strength, but when she's having a bad day at the office, that can translate into tons of unforced errors. It was a very streaky performance by Ana, who let Dechy break back in all three sets, but to her credit she never compromised - not even at match-point down.

Ana found herself facing two match-points at *4-5 (15/40) in the second set. She saved the first with a laserlike crosscourt forehand winner: low over the net and just inside the sideline.

After missing her first serve on the second match-point, Ana's forehand clipped the netcord, jumped up in the air, and landed so close to the bottom of the net that I couldn't even tell whether it was her side or Dechy's!

Ana: "Someone upstairs made the ball roll over. I felt like time stopped for a moment, because the ball was in the air for a couple of seconds. I thought the match would be over."

Quite a while later, Ana found herself on the verge of victory at *5-3 in the third. But she played two really poor games to level up at *5-5, and then came the cap-incident: Dechy's cap fell off just as she hit a volley-winner at 15/15, and the officious umpire ordered the point to be replayed. Ana won that point, and Dechy looked very upset about it; she completed the match without the cap.

When Ana pulled out of Eastbourne (citing an abductor-injury), she said she was "mentally exhausted", and "not ready to compete so soon after winning my first Grand Slam".

It sure looked like it against Dechy at times.


First set
---------
IVANO *@*__@*___*__ 6(2)
DECHY ___*@__*@* *T 7(7)

This match started at 13:09 BST - just after Nicole Vaidišová lost the second set against Samantha Stosur, and I was most displeased that the BBC stopped televising Nicole at such a crucial stage in order to show Ana's match from the start.

So I had Ana's match on TV in front of me, but I didn't watch it properly while I was following Nicole's third set on the online scoreboard.

I did look up to see Ana hit an amazing crosscourt backhand pass-winner. She was actually 5-2* up.

Dechy serving 4-5: Ana came to the net, hit a forehand smash-winner, pumped her fist and said "ajde". 0/15. Stosur hit a backhand pass-winner down the line just wide. 0/30. Dechy off-backhand winner. 15/30. Ana sprayed a wild forehand very long. 30/30. Ana forehand long. 40/30. Ana forced a short ball and hit a forehand winner down the line, with a cute little "ajde". 40/40. Dechy hit a deep, error-forcing crosscourt forehand just inside the baseline. Ad Dechy. Ana hit a crosscourt forehand winner onto the baseline; Dechy challenged it, and Hawkeye showed that it caught about 5% of the baseline! Deuce #2. Ana netted a forehand return. Ad Dechy. She hit a backhand wide off a deep sliced approach from Ana. Deuce #3. Ana earthed a forehand off a deep, wrong-footing ball from Dechy. Ad Dechy. She hit an off-forehand just wide. Deuce #4. Ana backhand long off a deep ball from Dechy. Ad Dechy. A good serve induced Ana's backhand return to float just long.

It's now quite windy, judging by Dechy's skirt.

Ana serving 5-5: 15/0. Service-winner down the middle. 30/0. Ana came to the net behind an off-forehand, forcing Dechy to earth a backhand. 40/0. Ace out wide: on the sideline.

Dechy serving 5-6: Ana netted a backhand. 15/0. Service-winner out wide: on the sideline. 30/0. Ana pounced on a short ball with an off-forehand winner. 30/15. Ana's half-volley forehand dropshot on the sideline forced Dechy to net a backhand. 30/30. Ana came to the net, but her approach was too weak; Dechy hit a crosscourt forehand pass-winner. 40/30. Ana hit a backhand wide off a deep crosscourt backhand just inside the baseline from Dechy.

6-6 tiebreak (all scores Ivanović/Dechy)
{*0/0} Dechy came to the net and hit a crosscourt forehand drop-volley winner.
{0/1*} Service-winner.
{0/2*} Ana netted a backhand return.
{*0/3} Double fault (second serve into the net).
{*0/4} Ana crosscourt forehand winner.
{1/4*} Dechy service-winner.
{1/5*} Ana netted a backhand return.
{1/6*: SP #1} Ace out wide.
{2/6*: SP #2} Ana sliced a backhand just long & just wide. Dechy won the first set 7-6 (7/2) at 14:07 (58 minutes).

The commentators said Ana started this match playing with variety, but then panicked and just tried to overpower Dechy, who is a very smart player and a dogged, determined competitor.


Second set
----------
IVANO _*@*___* * *T 7(7)
DECHY *___*@* * *__ 6(3)

Dechy serving 0-0: Ana came to the net, but Dechy forced her to retreat with a lob, came to the net herself and hit a crosscourt forehand volley-winner. 15/0. Serve out wide + crosscourt forehand winner. 30/0. Dechy hit a very short dropshot, inducing Ana to hit a forehand long. 40/0. Dechy got jammed by Ana's crosscourt backhand, and slapped a forehand into the net. 40/15. Ana hit a rasping crosscourt forehand winner back behind Dechy. 40/30. Ana forehand return just long.

Ana serving 0-1: Dechy off-forehand just wide. 15/0. Ana crosscourt forehand just long. 15/15. Ana crosscourt backhand wide. 15/30. Service-winner. 30/30. Dechy netted a forehand return off a mildly body-jamming serve. 40/30. Ace out wide: on the sideline with a puff of titanium pigment.

Dechy serving 1-1: Ana forced a short ball and hit a crosscourt backhand winner. 0/15. Dechy tried to serve & volley, but netted a nervy-looking backhand volley - snatched at it. 0/30. Ana blasted a crosscourt forehand return halfway up the net. 15/30. Ana netted a forehand off a ball from Dechy that hit the baseline and bounced awkwardly. 30/30. Dechy came to the net, but Ana drilled her with a hard forehand, forcing her to hit a forehand volley long. 30/40. Dechy on the third stroke netted a sliced backhand.

Ana serving 2-1: Ana let a short lob bounce and hit a laser-like off-forehand winner onto the sideline - unnecessarily close! 15/0. Service-winner out wide. 30/0. Dechy sprayed a backhand wide. 40/0. Ana netted a forehand. 40/15. Serve + off-forehand winner just inside the sideline.

Dechy serving 1-3: Ana crosscourt forehand return-winner just inside the baseline. 0/15. Service-winner. 15/15. Dechy crosscourt backhand wide. 15/30. Ana crosscourt forehand return virtual winner. 15/40. Ana hit a defensive forehand lob just long. 30/40. Serve out wide forced Ana to hit a backhand lob-return just long. 40/40. Ana netted an off-forehand. Ad Dechy. She netted an off-forehand off a body-jamming return. Deuce #2. Ana came to the net behind a poor dropshot, and Dechy hit an off-forehand pass-winner. Ad Dechy. Her backhand floated just long. Deuce #3. Dechy came to the net and hit a crosscourt forehand volley wide. Ad Ana (BP). Backhand return long. Deuce #4. Dechy came to the net, forcing Ana to net a sliced backhand (but why?). Ad Dechy. Ana blasted a crosscourt backhand return wide.

Barry Davies: "I think, in the end, Ana Ivanović lost patience."

Ana serving 3-2: Dechy hit a crosscourt forehand wide. 0/15. Ana netted a forehand. 0/30. Ana backhand just long. 0/40. Dechy crosscourt backhand just long. 15/40. Ana lost the point on a disputed line-call.

Dechy serving 3-3: Double fault (second serve into the net). 0/15. Quadruple fault (second serve into the net). 0/30. Service-winner. 15/30. A good first serve forced a short lob-return, and Dechy hit a lightning-bolt of a forehand smash-winner. 30/30. Dechy forehand just long. 30/40. Service-winner out wide. 40/40. Ana blasted a wild crosscourt backhand return long. Ad Dechy. Ana netted a backhand return.

Two really bad errors, and Ana is now two games from defeat.

Ana serving 3-4: Ana netted a forehand. 0/15. Ana hit a crosscourt backhand winner just inside the sideline - a go-for-broke shot. 15/15. Ana came to the net and hit a very acute-angled crosscourt backhand volley-winner just inside the sideline. 30/15. Ana hit an error-forcing off-forehand just inside the sideline - another acute angle. 40/15. Ana crosscourt backhand winner just inside the sideline.

Dechy serving 4-4: Service-winner down the middle. 15/0. Ana hit a crosscourt forehand winner after a dynamic, dominating rally. 15/15. Ana's sliced backhand pass down the line forced Dechy to miss a forehand volley. Ana pumped her fist. 15/30. Ana netted a forehand, and emitted a cute little yell. 30/30. Ana off-forehand just wide. 40/30. Ana forced Dechy to miss a forehand volley. 40/40. Ana crosscourt forehand winner + "ajde". Ad Ana. She netted a backhand return. Deuce #2. Dechy crosscourt forehand + off-forehand winner. Ad Dechy. Service-winner out wide.

Ana serving 4-5: Ana on the third stroke blasted a wild backhand just wide. 0/15. Ana crosscourt backhand + backhand winner down the line. 15/15. Double fault #3 (second serve just wide). 15/30. A nailbiting rally ended with Ana hitting a backhand just long. 15/40 (MP #1). Serve out wide + hard crosscourt forehand winner back behind Dechy. 30/40 (MP #2). First serve into the net. Ana's forehand on the third stroke clipped the netcord and crawled over for a winner!! Ana reacted by pulling her visor down over her face. 40/40. Dechy netted a backhand. Ad Ana. On the third stroke, she blasted a backhand wide. Deuce #2. Ana crosscourt backhand just inside the sideline forced Dechy into error. Ad Ana. Dechy netted a forehand.

Dechy serving 5-5: Dechy came to the net, but left herself exposed to Ana's backhand pass-winner down the line. 0/15. Ana forehand long off a deep ball from Dechy; Ana berated herself. 15/15. Double fault (second serve into the net). 15/30. Ana off-forehand just wide. 30/30. Dechy's forehand smash forced Ana to net a forehand. 40/30. Dechy netted a backhand. 40/40. Dechy backhand long off a short ball - nervous? Ad Ana (BP). Dechy crosscourt forehand + off-forehand winner. Deuce #2. Dechy's low-bouncing ball forced Ana into error. Ad Dechy. She stopped the point to challenge Ana's ball on the baseline, but Hawkeye showed it was well on the line, so she lost a challenge and the point. Deuce #3. Service-winner out wide. Ad Dechy. She came to the net and hit a backhand volley-winner down the line.

Ana serving 5-6: First serve out wide: crosscourt forehand return just wide. 15/0. First serve; short return; Ana off-forehand winner. 30/0. Dechy forehand long. 40/0. Ana hit an amazing low forehand winner: just a flick crosscourt!

Not much resistance from Dechy there.

6-6 tiebreak (all scores Ivanović/Dechy):
{0/0*} Ana's backhand down the line clipped the outside edge of the sideline for a winner; she said "ajde".
{*1/0} Ana's serve forced a short return, and she hit an off-forehand winner.
{*2/0} Dechy's deep return forced Ana to net a forehand, much to her disgust.
{2/1*} Service-winner out wide.
{2/2*} Double fault #5 (second serve just long).
{*3/2} Second serve: Dechy netted a backhand return.
{*4/2} Ana serve out wide + crosscourt forehand winner just behind Dechy (despite awkward spin on the return).
{5/2*} Dechy came to the net, forcing Ana to hit a backhand lob just long.
{5/3*} Dechy came to the net, but the wind caused Ana's crosscourt backhand pass to brush past Dechy's racket.
{*6/3: SP #1} Service-winner out wide. Ana won the second set 7-6 (7/3) at 15:10 (second set 1h03m, match so far 2h01m).

Ana spent the set-break retying her pony-tail as Dechy took a comfort-break. She then went out to hit some practice-serves, and stepped on the toe of a ball-girl as the umpire insisted on her not using the match-balls.


Third set
---------
IVANO * * *@ @__* * * *@ 10
DECHY _* *__@ @* * * *__ 8

Ana serving 0-0: Ana on the third stroke netted a backhand off a low-bouncing return. 0/15. Ana off-backhand winner. 15/15. Serve down the middle + crosscourt forehand swing-volley winner. 30/15. Dechy backhand down the line just long. 40/15. Ana ran down a dropshot and clouted a forehand winner onto the baseline. 40/30. Double fault #4 (second serve into the net). 40/40. Ana on the third stroke hit a backhand long & wide. Ad Dechy (BP). Service-winner out wide. Ana doubled over and shouted "ajde". Deuce #2. Dechy netted a forehand, and muttered. Ad Ana. Service-winner out wide. Ana pumped her fist.

Dechy serving 0-1: Dechy off-forehand wide. 0/15. Ana netted a backhand off a dropshot from Dechy at the net. 15/15. Ana came to the net and hit a classical backhand punch-volley winner down the line. 15/30. Ana off-forehand wide. 30/30. Ana hit a crosscourt forehand winner just inside the baseline, and shouted "ajde". 30/40. Ana steered an off-forehand just wide. 40/40. Ana forehand long. Ad Dechy. Ana off-forehand on the baseline called long; Ana challenged it, and Hawkeye showed that it caught about 10% of the baseline. So they replayed the point: Ana netted a forehand off a deep, low-bouncing ball from Dechy.

Ana serving 1-1: Dechy forehand return just long. 15/0. Dechy off-forehand wide. 30/0. Dechy netted a forehand return. 40/0. Ana crosscourt forehand winner.

Dechy serving 1-2: Ana lost her balance and hit a forehand wide, and screamed. 15/0. Service-winner out wide. 30/0. Dechy came to the net but hit an off-forehand smash wide. 30/15. Dechy came to the net, forcing Ana to hit a forehand pass long. 40/15. Ana hit a cheap backhand return long.

Ana serving 2-2: Service-winner down the middle. 15/0. Service-winner. 30/0. Ace down the middle: on the centre-line. 40/0. Ana netted a forehand. 40/15. Double fault (horrible second serve wide of the centre-line). 40/30. Dechy came to the net behind a deep, low-bouncing ball, forcing Ana to net a sliced backhand. 40/40. Ana forehand just wide on the third stroke. Ad Dechy (BP). Dechy netted a backhand, and Ana said "ajde" twice. Deuce #2. Ace. Dechy backhand just long.

I just heard that Novak Ðoković lost, so today could be a very black day for Serbia.

Dechy serving 2-3: Dechy sprayed a wild crosscourt forehand wide. 0/15. Dechy came to the net and hit a backhand drop-volley winner. 15/15. Ana netted a backhand. 30/15. Dechy came to the net, and her crosscourt backhand volley caught the outside edge of the sideline for a winner, much to her delight. 40/15. Ana hit a forehand return-winner down the line: right in the corner. 40/30. Ana's dropshot forced Dechy to net a forehand. 40/40. Ana played a great spreading rally, hitting a crosscourt forehand winner off a short ball, and shouting "ajde" with a massive fist-pump. Ad Ana (BP). Ana sprayed an off-forehand long & wide off a deep ball from Dechy. Deuce #2. Ana backhand winner down the line + "ajde!" Ad Ana (BP #2). She hit an error-forcing crosscourt forehand, doubled over and shouted "ajde".

The English commentators don't recognise the word "ajde"! It's the Serbian equivalent of "c'mon".

Ana serving 4-2: Ace out wide: on the sideline. 15/0. Service-winner out wide. 30/0. Ana netted a forehand. 30/15. Ana hit a sloppy sliced backhand wide. 30/30. Ana on the third stroke netted a backhand. 30/40. Serve + crosscourt forehand winner. 40/40. Ana backhand long. Ad Dechy. She came to the net, forcing Ana to net a backhand lob.

That's all three sets now that Ana has wasted an early break! 5-2* in the first, 3-1* in the second, *4-2 in the third.

Dechy serving 3-4: Ana, driven wide, hit a stunning forehand winner down the line - came right around it from outside the tramlines! 0/15. Dechy off-forehand just wide - Dechy challenged it, and it was probably less than a millimetre wide. 0/30. Service-winner. 15/30. Double fault (second serve just long). 15/40. Dechy crosscourt backhand wide.

Ana serving 5-3: Ana netted an off-forehand. 0/15. Ana hit a backhand down the line just wide, and made a little jump of despair. 0/30. Ana hit a sliced backhand halfway up the net. 0/40. Ana's depth forced Dechy to hit a forehand lob wide. 15/40. Virtual ace out wide. 30/40. Ana mishit a backhand into the net.

Barry Davies: "She was just too eager - too eager to win it."

Dechy serving 4-5: Ace out wide (Ana backhand airshot). 15/0. Ana dumped a backhand halfway up the net. 30/0. Dechy crosscourt forehand winner on the sideline. 40/0. Ana pounced on a short ball with a forehand winner down the line. 40/15. Ana netted a backhand.

Two really poor games by Ana, and the top seed again hanging perilously.

Ana serving 5-5: Ana came to the net and hit a crosscourt forehand volley-winner onto the sideline - unnecessarily close. 15/0. Ana netted a forehand. 15/15. Dechy came to the net and hit a crosscourt backhand volley-winner, but the umpire insisted on them replaying the point because Dechy's cap fell off just before she hit it! Loud boos from the crowd for that decision. On the replay, Dechy mishit a backhand off a crosscourt backhand from Ana. 30/15. Dechy hit a down-the-line backhand return into the tramlines. 40/15. Ana ran down a short ball and hit an off-forehand winner, and Dechy looks really upset about what happened at 15/15.

Dechy serving 5-6: Dechy forehand wide off a deep ball from Ana. 0/15. Dechy came to the net, but Ana hit an amazing sliced backhand pass-winner down the line, and celebrated with a lingering "ajde". 0/30. Ana blasted an off-forehand wide, as Dechy's relentless defence continued. 15/30. Ana backhand return long. She looks quite upset. 30/30. Ana hit a sweet, low-bouncing crosscourt forehand winner into the corner. 30/40 (Ana MP #1). Serve out wide + off-forehand winner. 40/40. Ana forehand long. Ad Ana (MP #2). Dechy served & volleyed, her crosscourt forehand first volley forcing Ana to hit a running forehand pass down the line wide. Deuce #2. Service-winner. Ad Dechy. Ace down the middle: on the service-line (Ana used up a challenge, but the challenge-counter gets reset at 6-6).

Ana serving 6-6: Ana crosscourt backhand winner + "ajde". 15/0. Service-winner out wide. 30/0. Dechy came to the net, forcing Ana to net a backhand. 30/15. Service-winner out wide. 40/15. Dechy netted a forehand.

Dechy serving 6-7: Service-winner. 15/0. Ana netted a forehand. 30/0. Ana netted a forehand. 40/0. Dechy's width forced Ana to hit a crosscourt forehand wide.

Ana serving 7-7: Ana off-forehand winner onto the sideline (Dechy used up a challenge). 15/0. Ana forehand long. 15/15. Ana crosscourt forehand winner caught about 1% of the sideline according to Hawkeye! (Dechy used up her second of three challenges). 30/15. Serve + crosscourt forehand winner. 40/15. Service-winner out wide.

Dechy serving 7-8: Dechy came to the net, and Ana netted a crosscourt backhand pass. 15/0. Dechy came to the net, forcing Ana to hit a forehand halfway up the net. 30/0. Ana hit a forehand just long, and wasted a challenge. 40/0. Ana ran down a short ball and hit a forehand winner down the line. 40/15. Virtual ace down the middle.

Ana serving 8-8: Ana netted a backhand. 15/0. Dechy earthed a backhand off Ana's crosscourt backhand. 30/0. Ace #10: out wide. 40/0. Ana hit a forehand wide off an unbelievable backhand that Dechy hit behind her back off a netcord. 40/15. Ana crosscourt backhand winner.

Dechy serving 8-9: Ana crosscourt forehand winner. 0/15. Ana hit her 35th forehand winner: a return-winner down Dechy's forehand-sideline. 0/30. Dechy backhand long. 0/40 (Ana MP #3). Serve + off-forehand winner. 15/40 (Ana MP #4). Ana hit a crosscourt forehand winner that looked like it was going wide, but dropped just inside the sideline. Ana won 6-7 (2/7) 7-6 (7/3) 10-8 at 16:32 (third set 1h22m, match 3h23m).

Ana celebrated with her by-now-familiar Nazgûl-like scream, and Dechy sat at her chair with her head in her towel, apparently sobbing.


Ana's BBC interview
-------------------

"Well, it was an amazing match. Very long, close, lots of good rallies. In the second set, I saved some match-points - once, the ball rolled over the net. My heart skipped a beat, because the ball was in the air for a while, and I didn't know where it was going to bounce; once it went on her side, I just couldn't believe it. It was really lucky. From that point on, I thought of the match as my second chance.

"She played really well, and gave me a tough match. A few balls really decided it. Up and downs, concentration from both sides; the third set was a game of nerves as well, so I'm really happy I could stay calm at some important points."

Does Ana ever do an interview without the phrase "it was amazing"?


Tim Henman: "Not the easiest conditions when the wind is swirling. Tomorrow she'll get back on the practice-court and try to regain that rhythm."

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

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/sharapova_vaidisova_hantuchova/

andrewbroad
Aug 6th, 2008, 10:49 PM
=================
THE CHAMPIONSHIPS (Wimbledon, England; grass; Grand Slam)
================= http://www.wimbledon.org/
Contents
--------

1. Photos
2. Third-round TV-report: Ivanović v Zheng

---------
1. Photos
---------

Day 5 photos including Ana Ivanović:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/tennis/7477371.stm

------------------------------------------
2. Third-round TV-report: Ivanović v Zheng (Friday 27th June)
------------------------------------------

- ANA IVANOVIĆ [1,DF] lt. Zheng,Jie [WC], 1-6 4-6

Are you hungry?
Are you sick?
Are you begging for a break?
Are you sweet?
Are you fresh?
Are you strung up by the wrists?
We want the young blood
[Radiohead, "We Suck Young Blood"]

One day after Maria Sharapova's shocking 6-2 6-4 second-round loss, Ana lost by a similar score, and in similar fashion: she just couldn't cut out the unforced errors.

Ana's loss is much less surprising to me than Maria's, because Ana spoke of how exhausted she was after the French Open when she pulled out of Eastbourne, and on top of that she had that 3h23m second-round marathon here.

No wonder she had nothing left in the tank, and went for broke even more than usual to avoid long rallies. No wonder she was almost in tears at every changeover in the second set - in contrast to her second-round win over Nathalie Dechy, where she always seemed to believe she could turn it around.

Tracy Austin had a different take. She said Ana had struggled to handle the pressure throughout her career, and that becoming a Grand Slam champion and two weeks later coming into Wimbledon as the new world #1 were just too much for her to take in.

Ana praised Zheng's performance, but said that she had struggled to adjust from clay to grass, couldn't find her rhythm, and also said the wind was a factor.

Zheng put in a very solid performance from the baseline - she's a very tough opponent when you're not playing well. She also looked quite cute, and had a nice grunt - although not matching Ana's beauty or the sexy twang in Ana's grunt!

I think Ana just needs to take a month off to recover from her recent exploits, and she'll be fine (that's what I wrote at the time).


First set
---------
IVANO _*_____ 1
ZHENG * *@*@* 6

The match was second on Court One, and started at 17:00 BST. I missed the first five games as I was watching the end of Marion Bartoli, of whom I'm also a demi-fan. I switched channels just before Zheng held for 4-1.

According to Virginia Wade, Ana is trying to overpower Zheng with a lack of variety.

Ana serving 1-4: Zheng ran down a short ball and hit a forehand winner down the line. 0/15. Ana netted a forehand. 0/30. Serve out wide + deep off-forehand winner just inside the baseline. 15/30. Zheng backhand return long. 30/30. Zheng blasted a wild crosscourt forehand lob-return wide. 40/30. Ana slapped a backhand into the net. 40/40. Ana came to the net behind a dropshot, but Zheng ran it down and hit a forehand pass-winner down the line. Ad Zheng (BP). Ana blasted a crosscourt forehand winner into the corner, and said "ajde". Deuce #2. Zheng crosscourt forehand winner just inside the sideline. Ad Zheng (BP #2). Ana dumped a backhand halfway up the net.

Well, judging by that game and the scoreline so far, Ana's problems from the second round seem to be continuing. If she was still mentally exhausted after winning the French Open, she'll be doubly so after that marathon.

Zheng serving 5-1: Zheng forehand just long. 0/15. Ana hit a beautiful off-forehand winner. 0/30. Ana backhand long. 15/30. Zheng hit a stunning crosscourt backhand would-be winner just wide, and wasted a challenge. 15/40 (BP #1). Service-winner down the middle. 30/40 (BP #2). Ana backhand just long. 40/40. Zheng mishit a crosscourt forehand wide. Ad Ana (BP #3). Ana netted a forehand, and gestured in frustration. Deuce #2. Ana ran around her backhand and hit a beautiful off-forehand winner onto the baseline: Zheng challenged it, and Hawkeye showed that it caught about 10% of the baseline. Ad Ana (BP #4). Ana netted a forehand. Deuce #3. Zheng opened up the court and hit a beautiful backhand dropshot-winner. Ad Zheng (SP #1). Ana blasted a crosscourt backhand into the net. Zheng won the first set 6-1 at 17:30 (30 minutes).


Second set
----------
IVANO *__@__* *_ 4
ZHENG _*@ @* * * 6

Ana serving 0-0: Zheng backhand long. 15/0. Ana hit a crosscourt sliced backhand low over the net, forcing Zheng to net a backhand. 30/0. Ana down-the-line backhand wide. 30/15. Zheng hit a backhand long, and emitted a cute little yell. 40/15. Ana came to the net, but her approach was too weak, and Zheng hit a crosscourt forehand pass-winner onto the sideline. 40/30. Zheng forehand long.

Zheng serving 0-1: Service-winner out wide. 15/0. Ana blasted a wild crosscourt forehand wide. 30/0. Service-winner down the line. 40/0. Ana blasted a down-the-line forehand into the net.

Ana serving 1-1: Deep second serve: Zheng netted a forehand return. 15/0. Zheng hit an error-forcing crosscourt backhand return at Ana's feet. 30/0. Zheng forced Ana to chop a forehand long. 30/15. Zheng netted a choky forehand. 30/30. Ana on the third stroke dumped a backhand into the net. 30/40. Ana netted a forehand on the third stroke.

This match is resembling Maria Sharapova's loss yesterday, although Ana's errors aren't quite as grotesque as Maria's were - just all too frequent at the moment. Ana looks close to tears at the changeover - I don't think she believes she's going to come through this one, and I don't believe it either.

Zheng serving 2-1: Ana forehand return-winner down the line. 15/0. Zheng netted a forehand return. 30/0. Ana dumped a forehand return into the net. 30/15. Ana crosscourt backhand wide. 30/30. Ana hit a deep crosscourt forehand winner just inside the baseline. 30/40. A nailbiting rally ended with Zheng cracking first: she netted a backhand.

Ana serving 2-2: Ana came to the net, hit an off-forehand drive-volley winner and said "ajde". 15/15. Service-winner. 30/15. Ana netted a backhand. 30/30. Ana netted a forehand. 30/40 (BP). Service-winner down the middle: Zheng challenged it, and Hawkeye showed that it clipped the outside edge of the centre-line. 40/40. Service-winner down the middle. Big fist-pump. Ad Ana. Zheng hit an error-forcing crosscourt forehand into the corner. Deuce #2. Serve + crosscourt backhand winner. Ad Ana. She hit a down-the-line backhand long. Deuce #3. Ana netted a forehand off a deep forehand at her feet, which she failed to move properly. Ad Zheng (BP #2). Ana's crosscourt backhand was called wide; she challenged, and Hawkeye had to zoom right in to show the miniscule gap between ball and line.

Ana looks extremely upset at the changeover, and is staring into space like she can't find a solution - like a schoolkid who's stuck, staring out of a window as if they expect to see the solution there.

Zheng serving 3-2: 15/0. Ana hit a flairsome crosscourt forehand winner. 15/15. Ana backhand long. 30/15. Zheng netted a forehand. 30/30. Zheng netted a backhand off a backhand from Ana that caught the back edge of the baseline. 30/40. Ana netted a running forehand off a very low-bouncing ball from Zheng. 40/40. Zheng hit a low-bouncing, error-forcing crosscourt backhand. Ad Zheng. Ana blasted a forehand halfway down the net.

Ana serving 2-4: Service-winner out wide. 15/0. Ana blasted a brilliant forehand winner down the line. Virginia Wade: "She's going for even more power than she's used to, so no margin for error." 30/0. Ana forehand winner down the line. 40/0. Ana crosscourt backhand winner.

Ana still looks upset at the changeover, but less so than at the last changeover.

Zheng serving 4-3: Ana crosscourt forehand wide. 15/0. Zheng off-forehand winner. 30/0. Zheng netted a backhand. 30/15. Zheng played a fabulous spreading rally, finishing with three crosscourt backhands, the last on the sideline, forcing Ana into error. Ana doubled over, looking desperate. 40/15. Ana netted a forehand return.

Ana serving 3-5: Serve out wide + off-forehand winner off a short return. 15/0. Ana netted a forehand. 15/15. Zheng netted a backhand. 30/15. Ana netted a backhand. 30/30. Serve out wide + forehand winner down the line. 40/30. Zheng backhand long.

Zheng let Ana off the hook a bit there. How will she handle the pressure of trying to serve the top seed out of the championship?

Zheng serving 5-4: Ana hit a beautiful off-forehand winner, low over the net. Ana changed her racket - a strange time to do that. 0/15. Ana forehand long. 15/15. Ana forehand return just long. 30/15. Ana blasted a wild forehand return very wide & long. 40/15 (MP #1). Service-winner on the service-line. Zheng won 6-1 6-4 at 18:12 (second set 42m, match 1h12m).

The way I feel about this loss reassures me that the top of my demi-fanship is the correct place for Ana in my list of favourites, because I've been asking myself a lot lately why I don't induct her into my Eternal Fanship. And the answer is insufficient passion.

I feel sad for Ana, but I'm able to take her defeat philosophically, whereas when Maria Sharapova lost, my heart was thumping slowly with devastation and disgust - it's really hard for me to come to terms with what I perceive as the biggest blemish on tennis-history since Monica Seles failed to win Wimbledon.

Ana got some good news on Monday 30th June, when the fourth-round losses of Jelena Janković and Svetlana Kuznetsova ensured that Ana would remain #1 after Wimbledon (a position she will lose - no doubt briefly - to Janković on 11th August).

I'm excited at the prospect of watching Ana play the Olympics. I'm not optimistic that the BBC will televise any members of my Eternal Fanship since Maria Sharapova pulled out, but surely they must at least televise Ana's match(es).

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

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/sharapova_vaidisova_hantuchova/