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View Full Version : Andrew's eyewitness reports and photos (Final added)


andrewbroad
Jun 10th, 2011, 10:28 AM
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AEGON CLASSIC (Edgbaston, Birmingham, England; grass; WTA International)
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Welcome to the master-thread of my Birmingham 2011 reports!

I have written reports on the following matches:
Day 1: Monday 6th June 2011 (http://www.tennisforum.com/showpost.php?p=19973445) (posted on 1st August 2011): Rybáriková v Webley-Smith; Lisicki v Date-Krumm
Day 2: Tuesday 7th June 2011 (http://www.tennisforum.com/showpost.php?p=20072791) (posted on 18th August 2011): Rybáriková v Vandeweghe; Mirza v Paszek; Rezaď v Govortsova
Day 3: Wednesday 8th June 2011 (http://www.tennisforum.com/showpost.php?p=20345427) (posted on 10th October 2011): Hantuchová v Cîrstea; Lisicki v Flipkens; Ivanović v Tatishvili
Day 4: Thursday 9th June 2011 (http://www.tennisforum.com/showpost.php?p=20491909) (posted on 16th November 2011): Hantuchová v Kudryavtseva; Lisicki v Paszek; Rybáriková v Arina Rodionova; Rybáriková/Kanepi v Cîrstea/Eraković
Day 5: Friday 10th June 2011 (http://www.tennisforum.com/showpost.php?p=20585820) (posted on 12th December 2011): Hantuchová v Riske; Ivanović v Lučić; Rybáriková v Lisicki
Day 6: Saturday 11th June 2011 (http://www.tennisforum.com/showpost.php?p=20622496) (posted on 22nd December 2011): Hantuchová v Ivanović; Lisicki v Péng
Final: Monday 13th June 2011 (http://www.tennisforum.com/showpost.php?p=20660388) (posted on 31st December 2011): Hantuchová v LisickiI have photos of all the above and many other players.

--
Dr. Andrew Broad

andrewbroad
Jun 14th, 2011, 01:30 AM
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AEGON CLASSIC (Edgbaston, Birmingham, England; grass; WTA International)
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Contents
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I don’t have time to finish my full point-by-point reports or post my photos until after Wimbledon, so for now, here’s a brief summary of each match for which a full report is forthcoming:

1. Monday 6th: First round: Rybáriková v Webley-Smith
2. Monday 6th: First round: Lisicki v Date-Krumm
3. Tuesday: Second round: Rybáriková v Vandeweghe
4. Tuesday: First round: Mirza v Paszek
5. Tuesday: Second round: Rezaď v Govortsova
6. Wednesday: Second round: Hantuchová v Cîrstea
7. Wednesday: Second round: Lisicki v Flipkens
8. Wednesday: Second round: Ivanović v Tatishvili
9. Thursday: Third round: Hantuchová v Kudryavtseva
10. Thursday: Third round: Lisicki v Paszek
11. Thursday: Third round: Rybáriková v Ar.Rodionova
12. Thursday: Doubles: First round: Rybáriková/Kanepi v Cîrstea/Eraković
13. Friday: Quarter-final: Hantuchová v Riske
14. Friday: Quarter-final: Ivanović v Lučić
15. Friday: Quarter-final: Rybáriková v Lisicki
16. Saturday: Semi-final: Hantuchová v Ivanović
17. Saturday: Semi-final: Lisicki v Péng
18. Monday 13th: Final: Hantuchová v Lisicki

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1. First round: Rybáriková v Webley-Smith (Monday 6th June 2011)
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+ MAGDALÉNA RYBÁRIKOVÁ [14,EF] d. Emily Webley-Smith [WC], 6-4 6-3

Whether due to first-match nerves or the difficult transition from clay to grass, Magda looked out of sorts on Monday.

Magda served very well, but was erratic with her groundstrokes, didn’t go to the net as much as she usually does, and had some external distractions such as a string in her skirt coming loose, having to ask a ballboy to hold an umbrella over her at a changeover, and a ballboy running right into her and jarring her left hand. Magda had a lot to mutter about.

So it was providential that she only had to play a British wild card ranked #247, who was so unaccustomed to playing on Centre Court that she walked onto court prematurely instead of waiting for the MC to welcome the players.

Webley-Smith also has a big serve, and Magda had a lot of trouble putting pressure on Webley-Smith’s service-games. The first set went with serve until 5-4*, when Magda forced four errors to break to 15 for the set.

At 1:0 1-0*, Magda pegged Webley-Smith back from 40/15 to Deuce with a forehand pass-winner down the line, and Webley-Smith quadruple-faulted to give Magda *2-0. Webley-Smith closed from *0-3 to *2-3, but threw in a sloppy service-game to give Magda *4-2, and Magda held onto that break to get across the finishing-line.

Magda would have to play a lot better if she was to progress further in this tournament, but that is another story, and shall be told at another time.

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2. First round: Lisicki v Date-Krumm (Monday 6th June 2011)
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+ Sabine Lisicki [DF] d. KIMIKO DATE-KRUMM [12], 6-4 7-6 (7/3)

Lisicki used her big serve throughout the match, and made a strong start to go up 0:0 *4-1. Then the momentum changed as the 40-year-old Date-Krumm began to weave her web of early hitting and clever placements to close to 3-4* as Lisicki became more erratic. However, Date-Krumm let Lisicki off the hook at *4-3 (30/40) by missing a makeable return, and Lisicki used her one remaining break to close out the first set strongly.

Lisicki broke at the start of the second set, but was broken back and had to save five break-points at *1-2 (15/40 + Ad×3) – which she did with an ace, two forehand winners, a backhand winner, and Date-Krumm netting a makeable return. Lisicki mixed up the pace with some slices to break for *3-2, but Date-Krumm fought from *2-4 to 5-4* as Lisicki became erratic again, but Lisicki was strong at *4-5, *5-6 and the tiebreak.

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3. Second round: Rybáriková v Vandeweghe (Tuesday 7th June 2011)
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+ MAGDALÉNA RYBÁRIKOVÁ [14,EF] d. Coco Vandeweghe, 6-2 6-1

This was a fantastic performance by Magda, with plenty of winners (particularly of the crosscourt-forehand variety), net-play, dropshots, lobs, and a mixture of sliced and two-handed backhands, leaving the American teenager so frustrated that she was shouting at length by the end of the match. Magda played even better than when she won the Birmingham 2009 title.

Vandeweghe is an interesting player in that she’s very willing to come to the net, where she has good touch, and plays old-fashioned punch-volleys. Her problem was that Magda could do everything better than her. Vandeweghe used Jesus’ name in vain at 0:0 *1-1, and didn’t win another game after that.

As Magda was coming off Court 2, a man standing near me told her that her performance was superb, and she gave him a big smile. I’m kicking myself that I didn’t manage to take a photo of that, as I was zoomed in too far to locate her in time.

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4. First round: Mirza v Paszek (Tuesday 7th June 2011)
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+ Tamira Paszek d. Sania Mirza [DF], 6-3 4-6 6-2

I joined this match at 0:1 *5-4 (shortly after the conclusion of Rybáriková v Vandeweghe).

Mirza was initially very impressive, her flairsomely powerful groundstrokes in good form as she served out the second set to 30, and broke for *2-1 in the third.

However, Mirza was upset by a line-call at 1:1 *2-1 (30/40), as a Paszek forehand was called long, but the umpire overruled it as good and ordered them to replay the point. Mirza reacted by using God’s name in vain, lost the point and the break, and didn’t win another game after that, as she appeared to tire.

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5. Second round: Rezaď v Govortsova (Tuesday 7th June 2011)
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+ ARAVANE REZAĎ [8,DF] d. Olga Govortsova, 7-5 0-0 (30/0) retired

This was an attractive match between the brilliant Rezaď and the beautiful Govortsova, but sadly both players had to take medical time-outs for foot-injuries, with Govortsova’s being so bad that she had to retire (she came onto court with her left ankle heavily strapped, so presumably that was the reason). Before that, it was very closely contested, with no breaks of serve until Govortsova at 0:0 *5-6 was broken to love.

Rezaď is in a pretty bad slump this year, but her Seles-like groundstrokes still looked very impressive in this match. As another spectator put it: “She’s so good but so bad.”

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6. Second round: Hantuchová v Cîrstea (Wednesday 8th June 2011)
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+ DANIELA HANTUCHOVÁ [4,EF] d. Sorana Cîrstea, 6-0 6-3

This match suffered an incredible five rain-delays (including the one that delayed the start of play), as short showers were interleaved with brief periods of sunshine over a frustrating five-hour period for all concerned.

In the eight minutes of play between the first two rain-delays, Daniela took a 2-0* (30/30) lead. They then had three warm-ups without being able to resume the match, and finally an uninterrupted passage of play in which Daniela immediately rediscovered her brilliant form.

Cîrstea is an extremely aggressive player, who didn’t panic after losing the first set 6-0, but held to 15 to avoid the double bagel at the start of the second. However, Daniela kept up the good work without even a hint of a choke, breaking for 1:0 *3-2 and again to seal victory.

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7. Second round: Lisicki v Flipkens (Wednesday 9th June 2011)
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+ Sabine Lisicki [DF] d. Kirsten Flipkens, 7-5 7-6 (7/3)

Lisicki had a pretty miserable time in cold, rainy conditions (there was a half-hour rain-delay at 0:0 2-3*), being *2-4 down in both sets to a tricky grass-court opponent, but Lisicki’s superior talent shone through in the end, along with her amazing smile when she won.

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8. Second round: Ivanović v Tatishvili (Wednesday 9th June 2011)
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+ ANA IVANOVIĆ [2,DF] d. Anna Tatishvili, 6-1 6-0

After being broken at the start of the match, Ivanović crushed her opponent with the most brilliant performance I’ve ever seen from her, including when she won the French Open 2008.

Ivanović was hitting the ball harder than any player I’ve ever seen at Birmingham except Maria Sharapova, and very often just inside the lines. Whenever her serves hit the back fence, they made an enormous clang. It was easy to see why she’s a former world #1 and Major champion, and harder to understand why she’s in such a deep slump when she can play like this.

Tatishvili was hitting the ball pretty hard herself, but Ivanović’s performance simply left her shellshocked. It was my first time to see Tatishvili play: my other general observation is that she has a very high service-toss.

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9. Third round: Hantuchová v Kudryavtseva (Thursday 9th June 2011)
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+ DANIELA HANTUCHOVÁ [4,EF] d. ALLA KUDRYAVTSEVA [16], 6-4 6-2

Daniela didn’t look as convincing as she did in her second-round win over Sorana Cîrstea. She served very well, but struggled to put pressure on Kudryavtseva’s serve after breaking at the start of the first set, which could have turned nasty, had she happened to throw in a bad service-game at any time.

Daniela was rather tentative when it came to serving out the first set, but fortunately she’s much less liable to choke than she was in the past. She’s much calmer now, and certainly likes to do things in her own sweet time: she was fashionably late for this match, and regularly took as much time as she could get away with at her chair.

Kudryavtseva made a terrible start to the second set, donating her first two service-games with double faults at break-point as Daniela took a 1:0 4-0* lead.

But Kudryavtseva, who sensationally upset Maria Sharapova at Wimbledon 2008 and then had the audacity to criticise Maria’s outfit, certainly showed her strong personality towards the end of the match, closing to 0:1 *2-4 before losing the last two games as the raindrops failed to amount to yet another rain-delay, despite the groundstaff being called to the courts.

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10. Third round: Lisicki v Paszek (Thursday 9th June 2011)
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+ Sabine Lisicki [DF] d. Tamira Paszek, 7-6 (7/1) 6-4

I watched the first set before I had to turn my attention to Rybáriková v Rodionova. Lisicki was down *1-3 and 3-4*, but once again fought back to take the set. Lisicki has become pretty clever at constructing rallies with dropshots, though I sometimes felt that she was overdoing them to the point of becoming too predictable.

The match had a controversial ending, as a ball from Paszek at match-point was called long but overruled as good. Lisicki claimed in a recent interview never to have thrown her racket, but she certainly dropped it as she argued about the call. So they had to replay the point, and Lisicki won it anyway.

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11. Third round: Rybáriková v Ar.Rodionova (Thursday 9th June 2011)
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+ MAGDALÉNA RYBÁRIKOVÁ [14,EF] d. Arina Rodionova, 6-7 (1/7) 6-0 6-1

Arina Rodionova is the younger sister of Anastasia, but remains Russian after Australia rejected her application for citizenship on the grounds that she wasn’t talented enough. Australia might want to reconsider that decision, as Arina knocked out top seed Kaia Kanepi in the previous round, and put up a good performance against Magda here.

Magda played very poorly (by her standards) in the first set, as she allowed herself to be distracted by shoals of noisy schoolchildren running about on the terrace overlooking Court 1, and had to endure a long delay before her service-game at *5-6 as a few raindrops threatened to suspend play, but the players had to wait on the court while the officials waited for the cloud to pass and then checked that the court had not become too slippery. There were no breaks in the first set, but Magda played a terrible tiebreak to go a set down.

Stung into action by the loss of the first set, Magda transformed into the brilliant player who had thrashed Coco Vandeweghe in the second round, hitting a series of wonderful volley-winners, including one below the height of the net at 1:1 4-1* (30/30). Rodionova hurt her knee at that point, but overall, it was all about Magda.

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12. Doubles: First round: Rybáriková/Kanepi v Cîrstea/Eraković (Thursday 9th June 2011)
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- Magdaléna Rybáriková [EF]/Kaia Kanepi lt. Sorana Cîrstea/Marina Eraković, 7-5 3-6 [9/11]

This was my first time to see Magda play doubles. She seemed happy and relaxed most of the time, although she did react to errors on two occasions by throwing her racket up in the air!

Magda and Kanepi made a bad start to go 0:0 *0-3 (15/30) down, but Magda brought her volleying-skills to the doubles-court to fight back to 3-3*, and took advantage of a poor couple of games at the end of the first set by Cîrstea/Eraković to take it 7-5.

The second set went with serve until *3-4, when Cîrstea/Eraković snuck a break of Magda’s serve for *5-3, and Cîrstea served out the first set 15 with the help of a winning smash and forehand volley from Eraković, whose prowess at the net complements Cîrstea’s power-game beautifully.

At 1:1, to the confusion of many of the spectators around me, the match was decided by a match-tiebreak (to 10 points rather than 7). Magda and Kanepi looked well on their way to victory at 6/0*, but Cîrstea/Eraković closed to 5/6*, so Magda and Kanepi had to settle for much narrower leads of 8/5* (courtesy of an ace by Magda) and two match-points at *9/7. But Eraković saved the first with a forehand winner down the line, and three consecutive Magda errors gave Cîrstea and Eraković an unlikely victory.

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13. Quarter-final: Hantuchová v Riske (Friday 10th June 2011)
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+ DANIELA HANTUCHOVÁ [4,EF] d. Alison Riske, 6-2 6-4

This had the potential to be a very dangerous match for Daniela, as Riske had played brilliantly to reach the semi-finals of Birmingham 2010 with wins over Anna Chakvetadze and Yanina Wickmayer, had taken a set off the great Maria Sharapova in that semi-final, and had done well to reach the quarter-finals this year after not doing much in the intervening year.

Against Daniela, though, Riske was a pale shadow of her best, especially in the first set. Riske held serve in the first game of the match, but only after 40/0 had turned into five deuces, with Riske saving three break-points (two with winners). Riske’s only other game of the first set was a hold to 30 in the seventh game.

Daniela played very well throughout the match, serving big, hitting some nice volleys, some groundstroke-winners, and winning several points that she seemingly wasn’t in a position to win.

However, things got worrying for Daniela in the second set, as errors began to creep into her game, and she was broken back from *3-2 (30/15). After wasting five break-points (including 0/40) at 3-3*, Daniela tightened up at *3-4, and had to save two break-points (one with an ace) that would have left Riske serving for the second set.

With that little nightmare behind her, it was a free-flowing Daniela who jumped out to a 4-4 (40/0*) lead, converting the third of those break-points on a double fault. She wasted her first match-point at *5-4 (40/30) with a wild forehand, but hit a forehand winner down the line to set up a second match-point, which she converted when Riske missed a second-serve return.

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14. Quarter-final: Ivanović v Lučić (Friday 10th June 2011)
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+ ANA IVANOVIĆ [2,DF] d. Mirjana Lučić, 6-3 6-4

This wasn’t exactly the most entertaining match, as both players were so powerful that few rallies went beyond two strokes, with Lučić in particular adopting a go-for-broke approach, but making too many errors to put Ivanović in serious trouble.

The first set was serve-dominated, the only break coming as Lučić served four double faults in the eighth game (which had three deuces).

The second set started with four consecutive breaks, followed by four consecutive holds. Then Ivanović hit some deep, error-forcing returns to break to love for *5-4, and served out to 15 for a victory that was not as terrifying as the one over Anna Tatishvili two rounds earlier.

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15. Quarter-final: Rybáriková v Lisicki (Friday 10th June 2011)
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- MAGDALÉNA RYBÁRIKOVÁ [14,EF] lt. Sabine Lisicki [DF], 6-7 (1/7) 4-6

In terms of two players both playing well at the same time, this was the best match that I have seen since Nicole Vaidišová v Ana Ivanović at Wimbledon 2007. It was certainly worthy of more than an International quarter-final – I don’t think anyone who appreciates fine tennis would have been disappointed had this been a Wimbledon final. That’s the kind of audience that it deserved.

Both girls have big serves, and Lisicki likes to hit dropshots as early in the rally and as often as possible. They had numerous fantastic rallies, with Magda out-Lisickiing Lisicki on some occasions, and Lisicki outfoxing Magda on others, as they both tried to pin each other back and then hit dropshots, and Magda hit some fantastic high volleys. Both girls were extremely determined, with Magda shouting even after forced errors, and Lisicki being stopped only by the side fence from retrieving one Magda smash!

There were no breaks in the first set, although Lisicki recovered from *2-2 (15/40) with two actual aces and a virtual ace, and Magda from *4-5 (15/30) with some good first serves of her own.

Lisicki dominated the tiebreak with the help of two groundstroke winners and two aces (one at set-point), and sadly for Magda fans, there was little chance that she would be able to recover from going a break down at the start of the second with Lisicki playing and serving so well, and so it proved. Magda continued to play well on her own service-games, but couldn’t put pressure on Lisicki’s.

When Lisicki hit a crosscourt forehand winner deep into the corner from a deep position to break for 1:0 *5-2, it looked like the final nail in Magda’s coffin, but Lisicki threw her a lifeline by double-faulting for 5-3*, and Magda held for 4-5* with the help of a fantastic off-forehand smash-winner running backwards, an ace and a crosscourt forehand winner.

Magda rallied from 0:1 4-5* 0/30* to 40/30*, but an unforced error and Lisicki’s pinpoint forehand winner down the line gave Lisicki her first match-point. Magda saved it by winning a nail-biting meaty baseline-rally, then had two break-points, but Lisicki saved them with a deep first serve and a forehand smash-winner, and sealed victory with the help of two more big first serves.

While I’m certainly not happy that Magda lost to Lisicki, who was supposed to play her part in a great match but lose gracefully, I’m not devastated either. It’s wonderful to see Lisicki back playing so well after the terrible ankle-injury that derailed her career at Indian Wells 2010.

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16. Semi-final: Hantuchová v Ivanović (Saturday 11th June 2011)
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+ DANIELA HANTUCHOVÁ [4,EF] d. ANA IVANOVIĆ [2,DF], 6-7 (2/7) 6-3 6-2

Usually, when Daniela’s on court, it’s all about her. This match, however, was more about the ups and downs of Ivanović, who played brilliantly at times, but very erratically at others.

“When it’s good, it’s really good, and when it’s bad, I go to pieces”
[David Bowie, “Candidate”]

Ivanović started the match like she was going to blow Daniela away, as Ivanović took a 0:0 4-1* (40/0*) lead with huge serves and forehand winners. At that exact point, however, Ivanović went off the boil, making a series of unforced errors as Daniela fought back to 4-4* after saving another break-point at *3-4 (30/40).

Daniela at 0:0 *4-5 led 40/0, but had to save two set-points (one with a fantastic crosscourt backhand volley) before holding after four deuces. She got out of that game with an ace, and Ivanović recovered from *5-5 (15/40) to hold for 6-5*.

Daniela at 0:0 *5-6 held to love with a pinpoint backhand winner down the line, a crosscourt forehand winner and two excellent serves, but Ivanović dominated the tiebreak, closing out the first set with two consecutive aces from *5/2.

Daniela recovered from 0:1 *2-2 (15/40) as her off-backhand at 30/40 was called wide but overruled as a winner; she then held for 3-2* with two forehand winners (one a drive-volley).

Daniela squandered a break-point at 0:1 3-2* (Ad), and the key game of the match came at 0:1 *3-3: a seven-deuce game played in steady drizzle, with Daniela saving six break-points – four of them with clean winners.

Daniela then hit two crosscourt forehand winners (one a volley) to break for 0:1 *5-3, and served out the second set to 15.

Due to persistent drizzle, they took a six-minute break before beginning the third set, then played one game – with Ivanović holding for 15 for 1:1 1-0* – before the match was suspended for 48 minutes.

Daniela saved two break-points at 1:1 *1-2 – with an ace out wide and a crosscourt forehand drive-volley winner – and held for 2-2*.

Ivanović then went to pieces, throwing in two sloppy service-games to go 1:1 2-5* down, with a nice hold for Daniela in between (she hit a crosscourt backhand pass and a forehand smash-winner). Daniela then served out the match to love, sealing victory with a crosscourt forehand volley-winner.

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17. Semi-final: Lisicki v Péng (Saturday 11th June 2011)
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+ Sabine Lisicki [DF] d. PÉNG,SHUŔI [3,S], 6-3 6-1

Lisicki was delightful to watch in this match, as she dismantled the third seed with an array of huge serves, powerful groundstrokes and frequent dropshots, and did it with a huge smile on her face.

Lisicki is now my favourite player outside my Eternal Fanship (in terms of Passion + Reason, for I still have a huge crush on Stefanie Vögele), although for a variety of complicated reasons, I don’t feel ready to induct her or anyone else for the foreseeable future.

Lisicki had a nasty-looking fall onto her back at the start of her first service-game, went 0:0 *0-1 (15/40) down, but Péng failed to press home her advantage.

At 0:0 *1-2, Lisicki held to love with a pinpoint forehand winner down the line, an ace down the middle, and a backhand dropshot-winner.

Lisicki then broke for 0:0 *3-2 after a game of three deuces in which she hit two backhand dropshot-winners, a crosscourt backhand winner, a dropshot + backhand lob-winner onto the baseline, and a brilliant off-backhand winner onto the baseline. She then held to love with three consecutive aces.

Péng recovered from *2-4 (15/40), and held for 3-4* with a forehand smash-winner, but Lisicki held for 5-3* with an ace and a forehand smash-winner, and Péng played a poor service-game to be broken to love for the first set.

Péng held for 0:1 1-1* with a forehand smash-winner, an off-forehand winner and a pinpoint ace out wide, but it was to be the last game that she would win.

In a game of four deuces, Lisicki broke for 1:0 *3-1 with four forehand winners, plus two passing shots (one on each flank). She held for 4-1* with a pinpoint backhand winner down the line, a huge crosscourt forehand winner, and two aces down the middle.

An erratic Péng service-game left Lisicki serving for the match at 1:0 *5-1, and she duly obliged with an ace down the middle, and, despite being attacked by a bee at 40/0, a crosscourt backhand winner. She was delighted to win, and sounded very excited in her on-court interview.

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18. Final: Hantuchová v Lisicki (Monday 13th June 2011)
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- DANIELA HANTUCHOVÁ [4,EF] lt. Sabine Lisicki [DF], 3-6 2-6

It rained all day on Sunday, so the final was rescheduled for 11:00 on Monday.

It was a disappointing match, as Daniela was hampered by a right-shoulder injury for which she took a medical time-out at 0:1 2-3*, and revealed in her runner’s-up speech that it had been bothering her all week. She never really got going against the strongest player in the tournament.

Lisicki served like a Williams sister, with eight aces (all in the first set) and numerous easy service-games. She also showed tremendous groundstrokes, particularly on return of serve, and mixed it up with plenty of dropshots. On this form, she will be a major threat to anyone at Wimbledon.

Lisicki is coming back from a terrible left-ankle injury suffered at Indian Wells 2010, which saw her ranking drop from a career-high of #22 to #218 as of Indian Wells 2011. This victory moves her back up from #100 to #62, but in reality, she’s playing like a top-eight player on grass right now, even though she has to wear ugly big braces on both ankles.

With Lisicki serving first, the first three games went comfortably with serve, then Daniela recovered from 0:0 *1-2 0/30 to 40/30, only to be broken anyway as she netted a dropshot, double-faulted, and succumbed to one of Lisicki’s trademark dropshots.

Daniela went 0:0 *1-4 0/30 down, but recovered with a pinpoint off-forehand winner, a beautiful crosscourt backhand punch-volley winner, and an ace out wide: 2-4*.

Lisicki led 0:0 4-2* 40/0, but Daniela pegged her back to Deuce, reached break-point with a crosscourt forehand return-winner, but couldn’t press home her advantage: *2-5.

Daniela hit a crosscourt forehand winner as she held to 15 for 0:0 3-5*, but Lisicki served out the first set to love with two forehand winners down the line, and an ace out wide at set-point: 6-3.

Daniela trailed 0:1 *0-0 0/40, but recovered with two crosscourt forehand winners, a good spreading rally and some good first serves: 1-0*. Lisicki went off the boil and was taken to Deuce, but Daniela couldn’t take advantage.

And so it came to pass (a crosscourt backhand pass to be precise) that Daniela found herself down 0:1 *2-2 0/40. She saved those break-points with good serving, but Lisicki broke anyway with a crosscourt backhand return-winner: *3-2.

After the aforementioned medical time-out at 0:1 2-3*, Daniela offered little resistance as Lisicki held to love and broke to 15, finishing both games with crosscourt forehand winners: *5-2. Lisicki served out the match to love with three dropshot-winners – the third being a dead netcord at championship-point.

Lisicki was very emotional in victory, falling to her knees to kiss the court, and celebrating with her amazing smile. She was shaking in her champion’s speech, and cried as she recalled how tough it had been coming back from injury.

When Lisicki won Charleston 2009 (beating Venus Williams and Caroline Woźniacki) and reached the quarter-finals of Wimbledon 2009 (beating Svetlana Kuznetsova and Woźniacki again), I thought that her potential was sky-high: to be world #1, a Major champion, possibly even the next member of my Eternal Fanship. Her ankle-injury set her back so far that I thought she had lost the potential to be any of those things, but on the evidence of Birmingham 2011, she’s not only back; she’s better than before.

--
Dr. Andrew Broad

andrewbroad
Aug 1st, 2011, 10:53 PM
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AEGON CLASSIC (Edgbaston, Birmingham, England; grass; WTA International)
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Contents
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1. Photos
2. First-round eyewitness report: Rybáriková v Webley-Smith
3. First-round eyewitness report: Lisicki v Date-Krumm

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1. Photos (Monday 6th June 2011)
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Permission to copy my Birmingham photos is granted provided that:
(a) no money is exchanged;
(b) they are labelled as “Copyright Andrew Broad 2011”.
Please let me know if you do use them on another website.

Since I don’t have time to upload hundreds of photos a day individually, I have uploaded each batch of photos as a large zip-file (approximately as many megabytes as photos).

Monday’s photos are in two volumes.


Monday Part 1 (Photos 001 to 179)
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http://www.divshare.com/download/15428793-eac

Magdaléna Rybáriková (69 photos)
Daniela Hantuchová (24)
Chanelle Scheepers (23)
Emily Webley-Smith (14)
Andrea Hlaváčková (13)
Naomi Broady (11)
Heather Watson (11)
Olga Govortsova (8)
Sandra Záhlavová (7)
Arantxa Parra Santonja (4)
Romina Sarina Oprandi (4)
Marina Eraković (3)
Sara Errani (2)
Alison Riske (2)
Mirjana Lučić (2)
Sarah Gronert (2)
Sorana Cîrstea (1)
Kirsten Flipkens (1)
Ekaterina Makarova (1)
Caroline García (1)
Anna Tatishvili (1)
Chan,Yung-Jan (1)
Alexandra Stevenson (1)
Virginie Razzano (1)
Samantha Murray (1)

Magdaléna Rybáriková (Photos 105–179) looked ethereally beautiful in a peachy-pink shirt, shiny glasslike ear-rings, and long, loose ponytail. Photos 164–166 show her pulling a white ribbon from her skirt and putting it in the bin. Unfortunately my camera let me down at the end of the match, leaving me with just Photo 179 as she left the court.

Daniela Hantuchová (Photos 004–065) looked very fetching as she practised in a green jacket.

Photo 032 is a haunting one of Virginie Razzano. Her fiancé Stéphane Vidal died on 16th May 2011, yet she looked straight at me and kind of smiled.

I love Olga Govortsova’s facial expression in Photo 054, which was taken just before she left the court after losing the second set in her 6-2 2-6 6-4 win over Romina Oprandi.


Monday Part 2 (Photos 180 to 350)
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http://www.divshare.com/download/15428985-28f

Sabine Lisicki (45 photos)
Conny Perrin (32)
Noppawan Lertcheewakarn (30)
Ana Ivanović (18)
Kimiko Date-Krumm (9)
Klaudia Jans (7)
Rika Fujiwara (6)
Urszula Radwańska (4)
Rebecca Marino (4)
Caroline García (3)
Alicja Rosolska (3)
Ekaterina Makarova (2)
Alison Riske (2)
Gail Brodsky (2)
Abigail Spears (2)
Melanie South (2)
Christina McHale (1)
Heather Watson (1)
Virginie Razzano (1)
Liezel Huber (1)
Lisa Raymond (1)
Vladimíra Uhlířová (1)
Natalie Grandin (1)
Kirsten Flipkens (13)

It was sad to see Sabine Lisicki (Photos 209–210) having to wear big, ugly braces on both ankles, but she’s still a great player and a beautiful girl, and her smile is amazing.

It was a delightful and surreal experience to see Ana Ivanović (Photo 207, 271–286) in the flesh for the first time after so many years of watching her on TV. I see most players either first at Birmingham or never at Birmingham. She drew a large crowd when she practised, and I love that she had “all ana” on the back of her shirt, as that is the name of my cat (named for my all-time favourite Neighbours character: Allana Truman).

Conny Perrin (Photos 287–323) is a new player to me, hence the high photo-count. I had searched for photos of her before the tournament began, but she took me by surprise with her bleached-blonde hair. Photo 314 shows her going to pick up her racket after she threw it across the court from the baseline after being upset by a line-call. She lost 2-6 5-7 to Rika Fujiwara, but I was impressed by her fightback from 0:1 3-5*.

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2. First-round eyewitness report: Rybáriková v Webley-Smith (Monday 6th June 2011)
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+ MAGDALÉNA RYBÁRIKOVÁ [14,EF] d. Emily Webley-Smith [WC], 6-4 6-3

Whether due to first-match nerves or the difficult transition from clay to grass, Magda looked out of sorts in this match.

Magda served very well, but was erratic with her groundstrokes, didn’t go to the net as much as she usually does, and had some external distractions such as a string in her skirt coming loose, having to ask a ballboy to hold an umbrella over her at a changeover, and a ballboy running straight into her and jarring her left hand! Magda had a lot to mutter about.

So it was providential that she only had to play a British wild card ranked #247, who was so unaccustomed to playing on Centre Court that she walked onto court prematurely instead of waiting for the MC to welcome the players.

Webley-Smith also has a big serve, some prowess at the net, and the ability to punish short balls with groundstroke-winners. Magda had a lot of trouble putting pressure on Webley-Smith’s service-games (at 0:0 3-2*, Webley-Smith saved two break-points with the help of two big first serves). The first set went with serve until 5-4*, when Magda forced four errors to break to 15 for the set.

At 1:0 1-0*, Magda pegged Webley-Smith back from 40/15 to Deuce with a forehand pass-winner down the line, and Webley-Smith quadruple-faulted to give Magda *2-0. Webley-Smith closed from *0-3 to *2-3, but threw in a sloppy service-game to give Magda *4-2, and Magda held onto that break to get across the finish-line.

Magda would have to play a lot better if she was to progress further in this tournament, but that is another story, and shall be told at another time.


First set
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RYBÁRIKOVÁ *_*_*_*_*@ 6
WEBLEY-SMI _*_*_*_*__ 4

The match was second on Centre Court. Webley-Smith won the toss and elected to receive. The match started at 12:57 BST in slightly windy conditions.

Rybáriková serving 0-0: First serve out wide forced Webley-Smith to net a forehand return. 15/0. First serve down the middle forced Webley-Smith to net a backhand return. 30/0. Magda played a good spreading rally, finishing with a crosscourt backhand dropshot-winner. 40/0 (GP #1). First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand winner. Held.

Webley-Smith serving 0-1: First serve out wide forced Magda to net a forehand return. 15/0. First serve forced a short return, which Webley-Smith dispatched with a crosscourt forehand dropshot-winner. 30/0. Second serve... Magda hit a crosscourt forehand return just wide. 40/0 (GP #1). Second serve: Magda’s deep forehand return forced Webley-Smith to net a forehand. 40/15 (GP #2). Deep first serve down the middle forced Magda to earth a backhand return. Held.

Rybáriková serving 1-1: Service-winner out wide. 15/0. Ace #1: first serve down the middle. 30/0. Magda on the third stroke hit a crosscourt sliced backhand just wide. 30/15. Magda’s deep crosscourt forehand forced Webley-Smith to net a forehand. 40/15 (GP #1). Foot-fault. Magda muttered. Second serve: Webley-Smith’s low-bouncing return induced Magda to net a backhand. Held.

Webley-Smith serving 1-2: Second serve out wide: Magda mishit a crosscourt forehand return wide. 15/0. First serve out wide forced Magda to net a backhand return. 30/0. Magda netted a backhand dropshot. 40/0 (GP #1). Webley-Smith hit a crosscourt forehand just wide. 40/15 (GP #2). Magda hit a dropshot-return, but Webley-Smith replied with an off-forehand dropshot-winner that died before Magda hit her second dropshot. Held.

Rybáriková serving 2-2: First serve out wide + crosscourt backhand volley-winner. 15/0. Magda off-forehand wide. 15/15. Webley-Smith forced a floater, and dispatched it with a high forehand volley-winner. 15/30. First serve: Webley-Smith mishit a backhand return that flew backwards into Stand D. 30/30. Magda hit a crosscourt backhand volley-winner. 40/30 (GP #1). First serve forced Webley-Smith to net a forehand return. Held.

Webley-Smith serving 2-3: Magda hit a crosscourt backhand winner off a deep ball behind her. 0/15. First serve forced Magda to net a backhand return. 15/15. Second serve out wide: Magda netted a backhand return, and muttered. 30/15. Second serve... Magda’s sliced backhand induced Webley-Smith to net a forehand. 30/30. Webley-Smith netted a backhand on the third stroke. 30/40 (BP #1). First serve forced Magda to earth a forehand return. Webley-Smith said “c’mon”. Deuce #1. Webley-Smith went to the net, but Magda hit a sliced backhand pass-winner down the line. Ad Rybáriková (BP #2). First serve + off-forehand winner back behind Magda. Deuce #2. First serve out wide forced Magda to earth a forehand return. Ad Webley-Smith (GP #1). First serve forced Magda to hit a backhand return long. Held.

Rybáriková serving 3-3: First serve forced a short return, which Magda dispatched with a short-angled crosscourt forehand winner. 15/0. Magda hit an amazing sliced backhand down the line: it landed plumb on the junction of baseline and sideline, forcing Webley-Smith to hit a forehand long. 30/0. First serve forced Webley-Smith to hit a forehand return long. 40/0 (GP #1). First serve out wide forced Webley-Smith to hit a crosscourt backhand return wide. Held.

Webley-Smith serving 3-4 (new balls): First serve out wide forced Magda to net a forehand return. 15/0. Second serve... Webley-Smith went to the net, but Magda hit a down-the-line forehand pass-winner. 15/15. Webley-Smith went to the net again, this time to hit a crosscourt forehand volley-winner. 30/15. Second serve... Webley-Smith punished a short ball with an off-forehand dropshot-winner. 40/15 (GP #1). Webley-Smith went to the net, and hit a down-the-line backhand volley just wide – off a Magda crosscourt backhand pass that was going wide! 40/30 (GP #2). Webley-Smith hit a sliced backhand halfway up the net. Deuce #1. Second serve... Magda hit an off-backhand wide. Ad Webley-Smith (GP #3). Magda’s backhand clipped the netcord and fell wide. Held.

The weather had changed since the start of the match. It was now cold and windy, with a hint of rain.

Rybáriková serving 4-4: Webley-Smith hit a short-angled crosscourt forehand, but Magda used the angle against her as she hit a short-angled crosscourt forehand winner. 15/0. Ace #2: first serve down the middle. 30/0. Magda hit an off-forehand winner back behind Webley-Smith. 40/0 (GP #1). Second serve... Magda ran around her backhand to hit an off-forehand wide. 40/15 (GP #2). Ace #3: first serve out wide, on the sideline. Held.

Webley-Smith serving 4-5: Magda ran down a dropshot and hit an off-forehand just inside the sideline, forcing Webley-Smith to hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 0/15. Magda’s crosscourt backhand return forced Webley-Smith to net a backhand. 0/30. Magda went to the net, forcing Webley-Smith to hit a forehand lob just long. 0/40 (SP #1 for Rybáriková). In a great rally, Webley-Smith hit a sliced backhand that bounced very low; Magda hit a sliced backhand and went to the net, but Webley-Smith hit a crosscourt backhand lob-winner. 15/40 (SP #2 for Rybáriková). Second serve... Magda’s low-bouncing backhand induced Webley-Smith to hit a backhand long. Rybáriková won the first set 6-4 at 13:32 BST (35m).


Second set
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RYBÁRIKOVÁ *@*__@*_* 6
WEBLEY-SMI ___*@__*_ 3

Rybáriková serving 0-0: Magda on the third stroke hit an off-backhand dropshot-winner. 15/0. Foot-fault. Second serve: Webley-Smith’s deep backhand return forced Magda to net a forehand. 15/15. Ace #4: first serve down the middle. 30/15. With both players at the net, Webley-Smith hit a crosscourt forehand pass-volley winner. 30/30. Webley-Smith’s deep off-forehand forced Magda to hit a backhand wide. 30/40 (BP #1). Magda went to the net behind a deep crosscourt forehand, forcing Webley-Smith to hit a down-the-line forehand long. Deuce #1. Ace #5: first serve down the middle. Ad Rybáriková (GP #1). Second serve: backhand return just long. Held.

Webley-Smith serving 0-1: Ace #1: first serve out wide. 15/0. Magda hit a crosscourt backhand dropshot just wide. 30/0. Magda’s sliced backhand skimmed over the grass like a stone over water, its low bounce forcing Webley-Smith to net a forehand. 30/15. Webley-Smith hit a deep, low-bouncing backhand down the line, forcing Magda to net a forehand. 40/15 (GP #1). Webley-Smith hit a down-the-line forehand just wide. 40/30 (GP #2). Webley-Smith went to the net, but Magda hit a forehand pass-winner down the line. Deuce #1. Double fault #1 (second serve clipped the netcord and fell back on Webley-Smith’s side). Ad Rybáriková (BP #1). Double fault #2 (second serve clipped the netcord and fell back on Webley-Smith’s side). Broken.

Rybáriková serving 2-0: First serve down the middle forced Webley-Smith to hit a backhand return wide and long. 15/0. Second serve... Magda mishit a crosscourt backhand wide. 15/15. Magda crosscourt backhand just wide. 15/30. Magda hit a crosscourt backhand dropshot-winner (Webley-Smith hit a crosscourt backhand winner, but it was not up). 30/30. Magda hit a crosscourt forehand winner. 40/30 (GP #1). Magda went to the net, and handled Webley-Smith’s dipping pass with a superb crosscourt forehand half-volley winner. Held.

Webley-Smith serving 0-3: Deep first serve forced Magda to net a forehand return. 15/0. Service-winner. 30/0. Double fault #3 (second serve into the net). 30/15. Webley-Smith punished a short ball with an off-forehand winner. 40/15 (GP #1). Second serve... Magda went to the net and hit an off-forehand punch-volley winner. 40/30 (GP #2). Magda hit one of her trademark jumping backhands, then hit a forehand long. Held.

Magda was not happy with the short time that Webley-Smith was taking between points. Magda put her hand up before the last two serves.

Rybáriková serving 3-1: Webley-Smith hit a down-the-line forehand winner that clipped the netcord. 0/15. Second serve: Webley-Smith’s deep return induced Magda to hit a crosscourt forehand wide. 0/30. Webley-Smith punished a short ball with a crosscourt backhand winner. 0/40 (BP #1). Second serve... Magda netted a backhand. Broken.

The weather had changed again. It was now hot, sunny and quite still. Magda asked a ballboy to hold an umbrella over her at the changeover, and left her chair early.

Webley-Smith serving 2-3: Second serve: Magda netted a backhand return. 15/0. Double fault #4 (second serve very long). 15/15. Magda’s deep crosscourt forehand induced Webley-Smith to net a forehand. 15/30. Webley-Smith forehand just long. 15/40 (BP #1). Webley-Smith hit a down-the-line forehand wide. Broken.

That was, as BBC commentator Sam Smith would have put it, a complete donation.

A ballboy ran straight into Magda! She flexed her left hand.

Rybáriková serving 4-2 (new balls): Magda hit a sliced backhand long. 0/15. Ace #6: first serve down the middle clipped the outside edge of the centre-line. 15/15. With the wind rising again, Magda’s deep topspin forehand forced Webley-Smith to hit a forehand long. 30/15. Deep first serve out wide forced Webley-Smith to net a backhand return. 40/15 (GP #1). Ace #7: first serve down the middle. Held.

Webley-Smith serving 2-5: With an emergency alarm going off in the middle of the rally, Webley-Smith hit a crosscourt forehand just wide. 15/0. Ace #2: first serve out wide. 15/15. Second serve: Magda hit a wild crosscourt backhand return long and wide, and muttered. 30/15. Service-winner out wide. 40/15 (GP #1). Second serve... Webley-Smith went to the net behind a deep sliced backhand, forcing Magda to hit an off-backhand wide. Held.

Rybáriková serving 5-3: Magda’s first serve was overruled as good... Second serve: Webley-Smith netted a cheap backhand return. 15/0. Webley-Smith slapped a makeable backhand return into the net. 30/0. Webley-Smith went to the net; Magda hit a crosscourt forehand pass just wide. Magda argued with the umpire, then muttered to herself. 30/15. Webley-Smith hit a crosscourt backhand wide, and shrugged her shoulders. 40/15 (MP #1 for Rybáriková). Magda netted a backhand dropshot. 40/30 (MP #2 for Rybáriková). Kick second serve out wide, deep into the corner, forced Webley-Smith to net a backhand return. Rybáriková won 6-4 6-3 at 14:08 BST (second set 36m, match 1h11m).

Magda gave an on-court interview, but sadly her microphone wasn’t working, so all that I heard her say was “first title” – she won her first WTA singles-title at Birmingham 2009. The interviewer said that it was a tough match, then asked her whether she thought she could repeat, then said something that sounded like, “It’s not gonna happen,” as if he were repeating what she said. I might be wrong, of course...

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3. First-round eyewitness report: Lisicki v Date-Krumm (Monday 6th June 2011)
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+ Sabine Lisicki [DF] d. KIMIKO DATE-KRUMM [12], 6-4 7-6 (7/3)

Sabine used her big serve throughout the match, and made a strong start to go up 0:0 *4-1. Then the momentum changed as the 40-year-old Date-Krumm began to weave her web of early hitting and clever placements to close to 3-4* as Sabine became more erratic. However, Date-Krumm let Sabine off the hook at *4-3 (30/40) by missing a makeable return, and Sabine used her one remaining break to close out the first set strongly.

Sabine broke at the start of the second set, but was broken back and had to save five break-points at *1-2 (15/40 + Ad×3) – which she did with an ace, two forehand winners, a backhand winner, and Date-Krumm netting a makeable return. Sabine mixed up the pace with some slices to break for *3-2, but Date-Krumm fought from *2-4 to 5-4* as Sabine became erratic again. Sabine was strong at *4-5 and *5-6, and in the tiebreak.


First set
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LISICKI @*_*@__*_* 6
DATE-KR __*__@*_*_ 4

The match was fourth on Centre Court, and started at 15:38 BST.

Date-Krumm serving 0-0: Sabine hit a deep forehand just inside the baseline, forcing Date-Krumm to hit a forehand long. 0/15. First serve out wide forced Date-Krumm to hit an off-backhand return wide. 15/15. Sabine crosscourt forehand wide. 30/15. Sabine hit a down-the-line forehand winner onto the baseline. 30/30. Date-Krumm netted a backhand on the third stroke. 30/40 (BP #1). Sabine off-backhand wide. Deuce #1. Double fault #1 (second serve into the net). Ad Lisicki (BP #2). Broken.

Lisicki serving 1-0: Ace #1: first serve out wide. 15/0. Second serve: Date-Krumm netted a backhand return. 30/0. Sabine’s backhand clipped the netcord and dropped dead for a winner. 40/0 (GP #1). Deep first serve forced Date-Krumm to hit an off-forehand return wide. Held.

Date-Krumm serving 0-2: Sabine netted a backhand return. 15/0. First serve down the middle forced Sabine to earth a forehand return. 30/0. Double fault #2 (second serve long). 30/15. Second serve: backhand return long. 40/15 (GP #1). Sabine on the fourth stroke netted a forehand. Held.

Sabine decided that it was hot enough to take her top off.

Lisicki serving 2-1: Second serve: backhand return long. 15/0. Sabine hit a crosscourt forehand dropshot-winner. 30/0. Sabine netted a backhand. 30/15. Second serve... Date-Krumm went to the net, but hit an inadequate half-volley dropshot that enabled Sabine to hit a forehand down-the-line pass-winner. 40/15 (GP #1). Sabine hit a pinpoint down-the-line forehand winner. Held.

Date-Krumm serving 1-3: Body-jamming serve induced Sabine to net a backhand return. 15/0. Date-Krumm went to the net, and picked off Sabine’s dipping crosscourt backhand with a half-volley crosscourt forehand dropshot-winner. Date-Krumm smiled. 30/0. Double fault #3 (second serve into the net). 30/15. Sabine opened up the court to hit a crosscourt forehand winner. 30/30. Sabine hit a pinpoint down-the-line backhand winner onto the baseline, and said “c’mon”. 30/40 (BP #1). Sabine, off-balance, hit a backhand dropshot-winner. Broken.

Lisicki serving 4-1: Double fault #1 (second serve just wide). 0/15. Sabine served a virtual ace down the middle, and said “c’mon”. 15/15. Date-Krumm crosscourt forehand wide. 30/15. A mildly deep return induced Sabine to spray a forehand long. 30/30. Sabine went to the net, but Date-Krumm forced her to retreat with a perfect lob onto the baseline, followed by a backhand dropshot-winner. 30/40 (BP #1). Double fault #2 (second serve into the net). Broken.

Date-Krumm serving 2-4: First serve down the middle forced Sabine to hit an off-forehand wide. 15/0. Date-Krumm hit a crosscourt forehand winner back behind Sabine. 30/0. Sabine hit a makeable forehand return just long. 40/0 (GP #1). Double fault #4 (second serve long). 40/15 (GP #2). First serve down the middle forced Sabine to earth a mishit forehand return. Held.

Lisicki serving 4-3 (new balls): Ace #2: first serve out wide. 15/0. Deep second serve induced Date-Krumm to hit a forehand return long. 30/0. Date-Krumm’s deep forehand forced Sabine to net a backhand. 30/15. Date-Krumm hit a deep ball down the middle, jamming Sabine so that she netted an off-backhand that would also have been wide. 30/30. Date-Krumm’s mild depth induced Sabine to hit a backhand long. 30/40 (BP #1). Date-Krumm let Sabine off the hook by hitting a makeable backhand return just long. Deuce #1. Date-Krumm hit a backhand long; Sabine said “komm jetzt”. Ad Lisicki (GP #1). First serve down the middle forced Date-Krumm to net a forehand return. Held.

Date-Krumm serving 3-5: Sabine went to the net, but her approach lacked penetration, enabling Date-Krumm to hit a crosscourt forehand pass-winner. 15/0. Second serve... Sabine pinned Date-Krumm back with a crosscourt forehand onto the baseline, and hit a backhand dropshot-winner. 15/15. Sabine’s forehand clipped the netcord and fell back on her side. 30/15. Sabine crosscourt forehand wide. 40/15 (GP #1). Second serve: Sabine netted a makeable backhand return. Held.

Lisicki serving 5-4: Second serve... Date-Krumm’s mild depth induced Sabine to net a forehand. 0/15. First serve + huge crosscourt forehand winner just inside the corner. 15/15. Date-Krumm netted a backhand dropshot. 30/15. Sabine’s crosscourt forehand induced Date-Krumm to slip; Sabine took advantage with a down-the-line forehand winner. 40/15 (SP #1 for Lisicki). Big second serve out wide forced Date-Krumm to net a forehand return. Lisicki won the first set 6-4 at 16:12 BST (34m).


Second set
----------
LISICKI @__*@*___*_*T 7(7)
DATE-KR _@*___*@*_*__ 6(3)

Date-Krumm serving 0-0: An awkward short ball from Sabine induced Date-Krumm to net an off-backhand. 0/15. First serve out wide: Sabine hit a down-the-line backhand return-winner. 0/30. Date-Krumm went to the net, but hit a forehand volley long. 0/40 (BP #1). Sabine hit a down-the-line backhand winner, and said “okay” (I’m not sure about this – if I could ask Sabine one question (other than the obvious), it would be what she says that sounds like “okay”). Broken.

Lisicki serving 1-0: Date-Krumm’s forehand return clipped the netcord and dropped dead for a winner. 0/15. Second serve... Sabine forced a short ball, and dispatched it with an off-forehand winner. 15/15. Sabine, on the third stroke, hit a crosscourt forehand dropshot-winner. 30/15. Date-Krumm’s deep, low-bouncing return forced Sabine to net a forehand. 30/30. Sabine on the third stroke hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 30/40 (BP #1). Sabine hit a crosscourt sliced backhand wide. Broken.

Date-Krumm serving 1-1: Date-Krumm forehand long. 0/15. Second serve: Sabine hit a down-the-line backhand return-winner, and said “okay”. 0/30. Sabine netted a backhand dropshot. 15/30. Sabine hit an off-forehand dropshot-winner. 15/40 (BP #1). First serve out wide forced Sabine to net a forehand return. 30/40 (BP #2). Date-Krumm went to the net, forcing Sabine to hit a backhand lob long. Deuce #1. First serve out wide + down-the-line forehand winner. Ad Date-Krumm (GP #1). Date-Krumm’s deep crosscourt forehand forced Sabine to hit a forehand long. Held.

Lisicki serving 1-2: Sabine, on the third stroke, netted a forehand dropshot. 0/15. Date-Krumm earthed a mishit forehand dropshot. 15/15. Second serve... Sabine netted a backhand. 15/30. Second serve: Date-Krumm’s deep crosscourt backhand return forced Sabine to net a backhand. 15/40 (BP #1). Ace #3: first serve down the middle, on the centre-line. Sabine said “okay”. 30/40 (BP #2). First serve out wide + off-forehand winner + “okay”. Deuce #1. Date-Krumm hit a forehand return down the middle, jamming into Sabine’s body, forcing her to net a backhand. Ad Date-Krumm (BP #3). First serve out wide + off-backhand winner. Deuce #2. Slow first serve out wide forced Date-Krumm to net a forehand return. Ad Lisicki (GP #1). Date-Krumm hit an off-forehand winner, and said “c’mon”. Deuce #3. Date-Krumm went to the net and hit a crosscourt backhand volley-winner. Ad Date-Krumm (BP #4). Sabine hit a down-the-line forehand winner, and said “c’mon”. Deuce #4. Date-Krumm slid into a backhand, netted it, and fell over. She knocked the grass out of the soles of her shoes. Ad Lisicki (GP #2). Body-jamming serve forced a short return, but Sabine sprayed a wild crosscourt forehand long and wide. Deuce #5. Date-Krumm’s crosscourt forehand forced Sabine to net a forehand, accompanied by a squeak. Ad Date-Krumm (BP #5). First serve: Date-Krumm netted a makeable backhand return. Deuce #6. Deep second serve forced Date-Krumm to bunt a forehand return long. Ad Lisicki (GP #2). Date-Krumm went to the net, but netted a forehand volley. Held.

Date-Krumm serving 2-2: Sabine hit some sliced backhands, and Date-Krumm sprayed a forehand very long. 0/15. First serve down the middle – on the centre-line – forced Sabine to net a forehand return. 15/15. Date-Krumm, on the third stroke, hit a backhand long. 15/30. First serve: Sabine netted a forehand return. 30/30. Sabine’s sliced forehand induced Date-Krumm to net a forehand. 30/40 (BP #1). Date-Krumm went to the net, but Sabine’s awkward defensive lob forced Date-Krumm to hit a forehand smash long. Broken.

Lisicki serving 3-2: First serve out wide forced Date-Krumm to net a forehand return. 15/0. Woefully short second serve... Sabine backhand long. 15/15. Sabine hit a crosscourt forehand dropshot onto the sideline, forcing Date-Krumm to hit a forehand long. 30/15. Second serve... Sabine netted a backhand. 30/30. Sabine hit an off-backhand dropshot-winner. 40/30 (GP #1). Ace #4: first serve down the middle. Held.

Date-Krumm serving 2-4 (new balls): Sabine hit a big forehand return long. 15/0. Date-Krumm hit a forehand low over the net, forcing Sabine to net a forehand. 30/0. Sabine’s deep forehand forced Date-Krumm to hit a forehand long. 30/15. Second serve: Sabine netted a backhand return. 40/15 (GP #1). Date-Krumm dominated the rally, her deep crosscourt backhand forcing Sabine to net a backhand. Held.

The weather had changed since 0:0 *2-1. It was colder now.

Lisicki serving 4-3: Sabine’s mild depth induced Date-Krumm to hit a forehand very long. 15/0. Date-Krumm’s deep return forced Sabine to net a forehand; she emitted a cute little high-pitched yell. 15/15. Date-Krumm’s deep crosscourt backhand died away, forcing Sabine to earth a backhand. 15/30. Sabine went to the net, hit an off-forehand volley-winner, and said “c’mon”. 30/30. Date-Krumm forced a short ball, dispatched it with a crosscourt forehand winner, and said “c’mon”. 30/40 (BP #1). Double fault #3 (second serve just long). Broken.

Date-Krumm serving 4-4: Sabine forehand just long. 15/0. Sabine netted a forehand return. 30/0. Backhand return long. 40/0 (GP #1). Sabine’s down-the-line backhand return was a winner despite clipping the netcord. 40/15 (GP #2). First serve out wide forced Sabine to hit a forehand return long. Held.

Lisicki serving 4-5: Date-Krumm netted a backhand; Sabine said “komm jetzt”. 15/0. First serve down the middle forced Date-Krumm to hit a forehand return wide. 30/0. Double fault #4 (second serve long). 30/15. Date-Krumm forehand very long. 40/15 (GP #1). First serve out wide: forehand return long. Held.

Date-Krumm serving 5-5: Off-backhand return wide. 15/0. Sabine’s deep backhand return forced Date-Krumm to hit a backhand into the bottom of the net. 15/15. Second serve... Sabine, on the fourth stroke, hit a backhand long. 30/15. Date-Krumm forehand just long. 30/30. Backhand return long. 40/30 (GP #1). A low-bouncing ball from Sabine forced Date-Krumm to net a backhand. Deuce #1. Date-Krumm went to the net, and hit a crosscourt backhand volley-winner. Ad Date-Krumm (GP #2). First serve out wide forced Sabine to earth a backhand return. Held.

Lisicki serving 5-6: First serve out wide + down-the-line forehand winner. 15/0. Date-Krumm hit an off-forehand return-winner. 15/15. Date-Krumm’s deep forehand forced Sabine to net a backhand. 15/30. Service-winner + “komm jetzt”. 30/30. First serve out wide + off-backhand winner back behind Date-Krumm. 40/30 (GP #1). Sabine’s sliced backhand forced Date-Krumm to net a backhand. Sabine said “c’mon”. Held.

6-6 tiebreak (all scores Lisicki/Date-Krumm):
{0/0*} Sabine hit a pinpoint down-the-line backhand winner, and said “c’mon”.
{*1/0} Date-Krumm backhand long.
{*2/0} Date-Krumm’s crosscourt forehand approach forced Sabine to hit a forehand long.
{2/1*} Date-Krumm forced a short ball, and dispatched it with a crosscourt forehand winner.
{2/2*} Second serve... Sabine went to the net, but hit a crosscourt forehand volley just wide, and complained to the umpire that it was on the line.
{*2/3} First serve: backhand return wide.
{*3/3} Sabine’s depth forced Date-Krumm to hit a backhand wide. Sabine said “komm jetzt”.
{4/3*} Sabine hit an off-forehand winner, pumped her fist and said “c’mon”.
{5/3*} Date-Krumm netted a forehand.
{*6/3: MP #1 for Lisicki} First serve: forehand return long. Lisicki won 6-4 7-6 (7/3) at 17:11 BST (second set 59m, match 1h33m).

Sabine’s on-court interview: “Oh yeah, definitely. I was looking forward – it was my first time on grass for two years... She takes the ball very early.”

--
Dr. Andrew Broad

andrewbroad
Aug 18th, 2011, 02:51 AM
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AEGON CLASSIC (Edgbaston, Birmingham, England; grass; WTA International)
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Contents
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1. Photos
2. Second-round eyewitness report: Rybáriková v Vandeweghe
3. First-round eyewitness report: Mirza v Paszek
4. Second-round eyewitness report: Rezaď v Govortsova

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1. Photos (Tuesday 7th June 2011)
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Permission to copy my Birmingham photos is granted provided that:
(a) no money is exchanged;
(b) they are labelled as “Copyright Andrew Broad 2011”.
Please let me know if you do use them on another website.

Since I don’t have time to upload hundreds of photos a day individually, I have uploaded each batch of photos as a large zip-file (approximately as many megabytes as photos).

Tuesday’s photos are in three volumes.


Tuesday Part 1 (Photos 001 to 179)
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http://www.divshare.com/download/15547249-7fe

Yaroslava Shvedova (55 photos)
Zhčng,Jié (26)
Magdaléna Rybáriková (23)
Andrea Hlaváčková (20)
Sandra Záhlavová (18)
Olga Govortsova (9)
Sorana Cîrstea (9)
Aravane Rezaď (6)
Ayumi Morita (6)
Casey Dellacqua (6)
Chang,Kai-Chen (6)
Jill Craybas (5)
Ajla Tomljanović (4)
Roberta Vinci (3)
Caroline García (3)
Ekaterina Makarova (2)
Edina Gallovits-Hall (2)
Sabine Lisicki (1)
Marina Eraković (1)
Naomi Broady (1)
Sara Errani (1)
Megan Moulton-Levy (1)
Lindsay Lee-Waters (1)

I captured a very strange expression on Magdaléna Rybáriková’s face in Photo 134! Photo 045 is another great one of her, while there are many more in Part 2.

Just one of Sabine Lisicki this time, but it’s a nice one, as I spotted her off-court and smiling (Photo 139). Had I realised that I was just 16 days away from inducting her into my Eternal Fanship, of course, I would have taken many more.


Tuesday Part 2 (Photos 180 to 302)
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http://www.divshare.com/download/15547334-b2e

Magdaléna Rybáriková (110 photos)
Coco Vandeweghe (22)
Sorana Cîrstea (2)

Part 2 concentrates on the Rybáriková v Vandeweghe match, with two glimpses of Cîrstea as Magda waited to go onto Court 2.

Photos 234 and 284 are very funny ones of Magda. She looks intriguingly sombre in Photos 293 and 296, waiting after winning the first set as Vandeweghe took a bathroom-break. I love the brilliant white light in Photo 298 as they shook hands: it almost looks as if they had been transfigured.


Tuesday Part 3 (Photos 303 to 371)
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http://www.divshare.com/download/15547420-884

Sania Mirza (26 photos)
Tamira Paszek (26)
Olga Govortsova (12)
Aravane Rezaď (10)
Arina Rodionova (5)
Anastasia Rodionova (3)
Roberta Vinci (1)
Kaia Kanepi (1)
Mirjana Lučić (1)

Sania Mirza looked mighty fine from both the near end (Photos 313–317) and the far end (Photos 321 and 331), while her conqueror Tamira Paszek was also quite cute (and a very nice person, according to a fellow spectator who had met her).

Top seed Kaia Kanepi lost to Arina Rodionova out on Court 2 (Photo 366). From the little I saw, Kanepi played erratically and looked disinterested, as if it were beneath her dignity to play in such a humble setting.

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2. Second-round eyewitness report: Rybáriková v Vandeweghe (Tuesday 7th June 2011)
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+ MAGDALÉNA RYBÁRIKOVÁ [14,EF] d. Coco Vandeweghe, 6-2 6-1

This was a fantastic performance by Magda, with plenty of winners (particularly of the crosscourt-forehand variety), net-play, dropshots, lobs, and a mixture of sliced and two-handed backhands, leaving the American teenager so frustrated that she was shouting and muttering at length by the end of the match. Magda played even better than when she won the Birmingham 2009 title.

Vandeweghe is an interesting player in that she’s very willing to come to the net, where she has good touch, and plays old-fashioned punch-volleys. Her problem was that Magda did everything better than her. Magda saved the only break-point against her of the match at 1:0 *0-1 30/40 with a virtual ace. Vandeweghe used Jesus’ name in vain when she went break-point down at *1-1, whereupon she lost her serve on a double fault. She didn’t win another game after that, even though she had four game-points (including 40/0) at *1-5.

As Magda was coming off Court 2, a man standing near me told her that her performance was superb, and she gave him a big smile. I’m kicking myself that I didn’t manage to capture that moment on camera, as I was zoomed in too far to locate her in time.


First set
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RYBÁRIKOVÁ _*_*@*@* 6
VANDEWEGHE *_*_____ 2

The match was third on Court 2, just after a brief shower. Magda won the toss and elected to receive, and the match started at 16:04 BST, with Vandeweghe serving from the far end against quite a strong wind.

Vandeweghe serving 0-0: Magda’s deep forehand forced Vandeweghe to net a forehand. 0/15. Magda went to the net, forcing Vandeweghe to hit a down-the-line forehand pass wide. 0/30. First serve + forehand drop-volley winner. 15/30. Vandeweghe forced a short ball, and dispatched it with a short-angled off-forehand winner. 30/30. Vandeweghe netted a forehand. 30/40 (BP #1). I confess with genuine sorrow and a firm desire of amendment that I failed to write down how Vandeweghe won this point. Deuce #1. Magda’s deep forehand return forced Vandeweghe to net a forehand. Ad Rybáriková (BP #2). Magda netted a forehand. Deuce #2. Vandeweghe’s backhand drop-volley forced Magda to net another forehand. Ad Vandeweghe (GP #1). Magda hit a sliced backhand return long. Held.

Rybáriková serving 0-1: Ace #1: first serve out wide. 15/0. Vandeweghe netted a sliced backhand. 30/0. Second serve: Vandeweghe hit a forehand return long. 40/0 (GP #1). Magda hit a crosscourt sliced backhand just wide. 40/15 (GP #2). Vandeweghe netted a backhand, and yelled. Held.

Vandeweghe serving 1-1: Double fault #1 (second serve long). 0/15. Vandeweghe went to the net, and hit an off-backhand punch-volley winner. 15/15. Magda dumped a forehand into the net – almost at the bottom. 30/15. Vandeweghe’s depth forced Magda to net a forehand. 40/15 (GP #1). Ace #1: first serve out wide. Held.

Rybáriková serving 1-2: First serve out wide + down-the-line forehand volley forced Vandeweghe to net a backhand. 15/0. First serve out wide forced Vandeweghe to net a forehand return. 30/0. Vandeweghe hit a loose forehand long. 40/0 (GP #1). First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand winner. Held.

Vandeweghe serving 2-2: Vandeweghe hit a crosscourt backhand drop-volley winner. 15/0. Magda went to the net behind a deep sliced off-backhand approach, and hit an off-forehand volley-winner. 15/15. Magda hit a deep forehand onto the baseline, forcing Vandeweghe to net a forehand. 15/30. Vandeweghe netted a backhand off a short return. 15/40 (BP #1). Vandeweghe tried to serve and volley, but pushed a forehand first volley wide. Held.

Vandeweghe got her coach to come onto court and talk to her at the changeover.

Rybáriková serving 3-2: First serve out wide: forehand return long. 15/0. The wind blew a short ball from Magda backwards, forcing Vandeweghe to net a forehand. 30/0. Vandeweghe forehand long. 40/0 (GP #1). Deep first serve down the middle forced Vandeweghe to hit a forehand lob-return that flew backwards towards the spectators. Held.

Vandeweghe serving 2-4: First serve down the middle forced Magda to earth a backhand. 15/0. Double fault #2 (second serve wide of the centre-line). 15/15. Magda forced a short ball, and dispatched it with a crosscourt forehand winner. 15/30. Vandeweghe went to the net, but Magda turned the point on its head with a deep lob to the baseline, forcing Vandeweghe to retreat while Magda went to the net to hit a half-volley forehand dropshot + down-the-line backhand punch-volley winner. 15/40 (BP #1). Magda ran down a dropshot, and hit a crosscourt forehand winner that clipped the netcord. Broken.

Rybáriková serving 5-2 (new balls): Vandeweghe’s deep crosscourt forehand forced Magda to hit a forehand long. 0/15. First serve down the middle forced Vandeweghe to net a backhand return. 15/15. Vandeweghe’s deep return induced Magda to net a forehand. 15/30. Deep first serve forced Vandeweghe to hit a forehand long. 30/30. Another deep serve forced Vandeweghe to hit another forehand return long. 40/30 (SP #1 for Rybáriková). Vandeweghe mishit a crosscourt backhand wide. Rybáriková won the first set 6-2 at 16:32 BST (28m).

Vandeweghe took a bathroom-break, while Magda got her coach Martin Hromec to come onto court and talk to her.


Second set
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RYBÁRIKOVÁ _*@*@*@ 6
VANDEWEGHE *______ 1

Vandeweghe serving 0-0: First serve forced Magda to net a forehand return. 15/0. Forehand return just long. 30/0. Magda down-the-line forehand wide. 40/0 (GP #1). Vandeweghe hit a crosscourt forehand winner back behind Magda, causing her to slip. Held.

Rybáriková serving 0-1: Vandeweghe’s short-angled crosscourt forehand forced Magda to net a forehand. 0/15. Vandeweghe went to the net behind a crosscourt forehand deep into the corner, and hit an off-forehand volley-winner. 0/30. Magda hit a brave second serve onto the service-line... Vandeweghe netted a forehand. 15/30. First serve: Vandeweghe mishit a forehand return into the net. 30/30. Vandeweghe went to the net, and hit a crosscourt forehand punch-volley winner. 30/40 (BP #1). Virtual ace: first serve down the middle forced Vandeweghe to earth a forehand return. Deuce #1. Magda’s deep crosscourt forehand forced Vandeweghe to hit a forehand long. Ad Rybáriková (GP #1). Serve out wide induced Vandeweghe to mishit a crosscourt backhand into the net.

Vandeweghe serving 1-1: Vandeweghe went to the net, but Magda hit a down-the-line backhand pass-winner. 0/15. Vandeweghe went to the net, but a well-placed lob from Magda forced her to net an awkward high backhand volley. 0/30. Vandeweghe hit a short-angled crosscourt forehand winner back behind Magda. 15/30. Vandeweghe served and volleyed with a crosscourt forehand punch-volley winner. 30/30. Magda opened up the court to hit a crosscourt forehand winner. 30/40 (BP #1). Vandeweghe forced a short floater, and dispatched it with an easy off-forehand smash-winner. Deuce #1. Vandeweghe hit a forehand long, and shouted “Jesus!” Ad Rybáriková (BP #2). Double fault #3 (second serve long). Broken.

The groundstaff ran past Magda and almost into her (the day before, a ballboy actually did run into Magda).

Rybáriková serving 2-1: Vandeweghe hit a crosscourt backhand wide, and slipped over. 15/0. First serve out wide: Vandeweghe mishit a crosscourt backhand return wide. 30/0. Deep first serve down the middle forced Vandeweghe to hit an off-forehand return wide. 40/0 (GP #1). Backhand return long. Held.

Vandeweghe serving 1-3: Vandeweghe hit a crosscourt backhand winner; Magda muttered. 15/0. Double fault #4 (second serve long). 15/15. Magda hit a deep ball onto the baseline: Vandeweghe netted a forehand, and shouted. 15/30. Magda hit a down-the-line backhand wide, raised her head and groaned. 30/30. Magda’s deep crosscourt forehand return forced Vandeweghe to net a forehand. 30/40 (BP #1). Magda’s sliced backhand down the line forced Vandeweghe to net another forehand. Broken.

Rybáriková serving 4-1: Magda left a Vandeweghe forehand, thinking it was going to be long, but it was just in. 0/15. Vandeweghe forehand long. 15/15. Body-jamming first serve forced Vandeweghe to mishit a crosscourt forehand return wide. 30/15. First serve out wide: Vandeweghe mishit a crosscourt backhand wide, and said: “Ah, come on.” 40/15 (GP #1). Vandeweghe’s deep return down the middle induced Magda to hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 40/30 (GP #2). Vandeweghe hit another deep return down the middle: Magda netted a forehand, and groaned. Deuce #1. Vandeweghe went to the net, but Magda ripped a forehand pass-winner down the line. Vandeweghe muttered something about “a return like that” and “serious”. Ad Rybáriková (GP #3). First serve out wide induced Vandeweghe to earth a mishit forehand return. Held.

Vandeweghe serving 1-5: Magda netted a forehand, and rolled her head. 15/0. Vandeweghe went to the net, forcing Magda to hit a forehand long. 30/0. Magda dumped a backhand into the net. 40/0 (GP #1). Vandeweghe tried to serve and volley behind a second serve out wide, but Magda passed her with a down-the-line backhand return-winner. 40/15 (GP #2). Vandeweghe went to the net behind a dropshot, but Magda ran it down and hit a pinpoint crosscourt backhand pass-winner onto the sideline. 40/30 (GP #3). Vandeweghe hit a forehand just long, rolled her head, and shouted: “No way... goodness gracious!” Deuce #1. Virtual ace: first serve down the middle forced Magda to bunt a backhand lob-return that landed on her own side of the net. Ad Vandeweghe (GP #4). Vandeweghe mishit a backhand into the net. Deuce #2. Vandeweghe went to the net, but Magda hit a crosscourt backhand pass-winner. Ad Rybáriková (MP #1). Magda hit a crosscourt forehand that looked like it was going to win the match for her, but Vandeweghe retrieved it, and Magda slipped as she netted a backhand. Deuce #3. Magda’s crosscourt forehand return forced Vandeweghe to stretch and net a forehand. Vandeweghe muttered some more. Ad Rybáriková (MP #2). Magda hit an off-forehand winner onto the sideline. Rybáriková won 6-2 6-1 at 17:10 BST (second set 38m, match 1h06m).

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3. First-round eyewitness report: Mirza v Paszek (Tuesday 7th June 2011)
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- Sania Mirza [DF] lt. Tamira Paszek, 3-6 6-4 2-6

I joined this match at 0:1 *5-4 (shortly after the conclusion of Rybáriková v Vandeweghe).

Mirza was initially very impressive, her flairsomely powerful groundstrokes in good form as she served out the second set to 30, and broke for *2-1 in the third.

However, Mirza was upset by a line-call at 1:1 *2-1 (30/40), as a Paszek forehand was called long, but the umpire overruled it as good and ordered them to replay the point. Mirza reacted by using God’s name in vain, lost the point and the break, and didn’t win another game after that, as she appeared to tire.


Second set
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MIRZA ????????@* 6
PASZE ????????__ 4

The match was second on Centre Court, and started at 16:04 BST. It appeared on the online scoreboard at 17:16 BST (0:1 4-4*), and I joined it at 17:22 BST (0:1 *5-4).

Paszek serving 4-4: 15/0. 30/0. Second serve... 30/15. 30/30. 30/40 (BP #1). Broken.

Mirza serving 5-4: Mirza netted a forehand, and smacked her racket with her hand. 0/15. Mirza hit a big crosscourt forehand winner just inside the sideline. 15/15. First serve out wide: forehand return long. 30/15. Second serve... Mirza netted a backhand. 30/30. Mirza’s crosscourt forehand forced Paszek to earth a forehand. 40/30 (SP #1 for Mirza). Second serve: crosscourt forehand return wide. Mirza won the second set 6-4 at 17:25 BST (match so far 1h21m).

Mirza took a bathroom-break, and the third set did not therefore start until 17:30 BST (5m delay).


Third set
---------
MIRZA _*@_____ 2
PASZE *__@*@*@ 6

Paszek serving 0-0: Mirza’s deep forehand forced Paszek to hit a backhand long. 0/15. Second serve: Mirza netted a forehand return. 15/15. Mirza’s short-angled crosscourt backhand forced Paszek to net a backhand. 15/30. Paszek’s off-forehand forced Mirza to earth a backhand. Paszek said “c’mon” and pumped her fist. 30/30. Mirza hit a forehand very long, and groaned while Paszek said “c’mon” again. 40/30 (GP #1). Second serve... Paszek hit a crosscourt forehand winner back behind Mirza. Held.

Mirza serving 0-1: Second serve... Paszek hit a down-the-line backhand just wide. 15/0. Paszek netted a forehand. 30/0. First serve out wide: forehand return long. 40/0 (GP #1). Double fault #5 (second serve wide of the centre-line). 40/15 (GP #2). Mirza forehand long. 40/30 (GP #3). Paszek netted a backhand. Held.

Paszek serving 1-1: Mirza backhand long. 15/0. Mirza went to the net, forcing Paszek to hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 15/15. Paszek crosscourt backhand wide. 15/30. Mirza’s deep return forced Paszek to hit a forehand long. 15/40 (BP #1). Paszek went to the net, and hit a crosscourt forehand volley-winner. 30/40 (BP #2). Paszek forehand long. Broken.

Mirza serving 2-1: Double fault #6 (second serve long). 0/15. Mirza, driven wide, netted a sliced backhand off a low-bouncing ball from Paszek. 0/30. Paszek forehand just long. 15/30. Second serve... Mirza backhand very long. 15/40 (BP #1). Mirza hit a pinpoint backhand winner down the line. 30/40 (BP #2). Paszek’s forehand was called long, but overruled as good. Mirza argued with the umpire, and said “oh my God”. So they replayed the point: Mirza hit a backhand long, and stared at the umpire, who said: “Deuce. Correction. Game Miss Paszek.” Broken.

Paszek serving 2-2: First serve out wide: forehand return long. 15/0. Mirza forehand long. 30/0. Deep serve: forehand return long. 40/0 (GP #1). First serve out wide: backhand return long. Held.

Mirza serving 2-3: 15/15. 30/15. 30/30. 30/40 (BP #1). Broken.

Mirza got her coach to come onto the court and talk to her.

Paszek serving 4-2 (new balls): Forehand return very long. 15/0. Paszek netted a sliced forehand on the third stroke. 15/15. Forehand return long. Paszek said “c’mon”. 30/15. Second serve... Mirza sprayed a wild forehand very long. 40/15 (GP #1). First serve down the middle: Mirza hit a backhand return halfway up the net. Held.

Mirza serving 2-5: Second serve... Paszek hit a crosscourt backhand winner. 0/15. Mirza hit a crosscourt forehand + off-forehand winner. 15/15. Paszek hit another crosscourt backhand winner. 15/30. Mirza hit a backhand very long. 15/40 (MP #1 for Paszek). Second serve... Mirza hit a backhand long. Paszek won 6-3 4-6 6-2 at 18:00 BST (third set 35m, match 1h56m).

Paszek’s on-court interview: “Oh my God, yes! She played an amazing game. I was down a break in the third. Thanks to the crowd: it was an amazing atmosphere. This is one of my favourite tournaments.”

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4. Second-round eyewitness report: Rezaď v Govortsova (Tuesday 7th June 2011)
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+ ARAVANE REZAĎ [8,DF] d. Olga Govortsova, 7-5 0-0 (30/0) retired (left-ankle sprain)

This was an attractive match between the brilliant Rezaď and the beautiful Govortsova, but sadly both players had to take medical time-outs for foot-injuries, with Govortsova’s being so bad that she had to retire. Before that, it was very closely contested, with no breaks of serve until Govortsova at 0:0 *5-6 was broken to love. She retired at 0:1 0/0* 0/30*, having lost the last eight points.

Rezaď is in a pretty bad slump this year, but her Seles-like groundstrokes still looked very impressive in this match. As another spectator put it: “She’s so good but so bad.”


First set
---------
REZAĎ *_*_*_*_*_*@ 7
GOVOR _*_*_*_*_*__ 5

The match was third on Centre Court. Govortsova came onto court with her left ankle already heavily strapped. She won the toss and chose to receive, and the match started at 18:16 BST.

Rezaď serving 0-0: Govortsova’s crosscourt forehand forced Rezaď to net a forehand. 0/15. Ace #1: first serve down the middle. 15/15. Rezaď hit a down-the-line backhand drive-volley winner; Govortsova complained about the lack of a call. 30/15. Govortsova crosscourt backhand wide. 40/15 (GP #1). Body-jamming second serve out wide forced Govortsova to net an off-backhand return. Rezaď complained about something. Held.

Govortsova serving 0-1: First serve out wide: Rezaď netted a forehand return. 15/0. Govortsova hit an off-forehand volley-winner down the line. 30/0. Deep first serve out wide: forehand return long. 40/0 (GP #1). First serve out wide: Rezaď netted a backhand return. Held.

Rezaď serving 1-1: Rezaď hit a crosscourt forehand winner back behind Govortsova. 15/0. Rezaď hit an off-forehand winner. 30/0. Ace #2: first serve down the middle. 40/0 (GP #1). First serve down the middle: Govortsova netted a forehand return. Held.

Rezaď took a medical timeout for an apparent foot-injury between 18:23 and 18:28 BST (4m).

Govortsova serving 1-2: Rezaď hit an off-backhand return-winner. 0/15. Off-backhand return wide. 15/15. Rezaď forehand long. 30/15. And again. 40/15 (GP #1). Rezaď forehand just long. Held.

Rezaď serving 2-2: Rezaď hit a crosscourt forehand winner. 15/0. Rezaď forced a short return, and dispatched it with an off-forehand winner. 30/0. Govortsova punished a short ball with a crosscourt forehand winner. 30/15. Rezaď forced a short ball, and dispatched it with an off-forehand winner. 40/15 (GP #1). Rezaď hit a crosscourt forehand winner just inside the sideline. Held.

Govortsova took a medical timeout for her left ankle between 18:33 and 18:38 BST (5m), while Rezaď got her coach to come onto court and talk to her.

Govortsova serving 2-3: Rezaď went for a down-the-line forehand winner, but it was just wide. 15/0. Second serve... Rezaď’s off-backhand was called wide, but overruled as a winner. Govortsova complained, and I must say that it was clearly wide, for I saw narrow daylight between the ball and the sideline. 15/15. Govortsova’s depth forced Rezaď to hit a forehand long. 30/15. Govortsova’s deep crosscourt backhand forced Rezaď to earth a backhand. 40/15 (GP #1). Govortsova went to the net, forcing Rezaď to net a backhand. Held.

Rezaď serving 3-3: Deep second serve out wide: Govortsova netted a forehand return. 15/0. Ace #3: first serve out wide, just inside the sideline. 30/0. Ace #4: first serve out wide clipped the outside edge of the sideline. 40/0 (GP #1). Rezaď’s deep down-the-line backhand forced Govortsova to earth a forehand. Held.

Govortsova serving 3-4 (new balls): First serve out wide: Govortsova netted a forehand. 15/0. Govortsova hit a down-the-line backhand dropshot-winner, but the umpire ordered them to replay the point, “because the linesman started to call”. Govortsova received divine justice on the replay: her forehand clipped the netcord and dropped dead for a winner. 30/0. Govortsova netted a backhand. 30/15. Govortsova forehand long. 30/30. Double fault #1 (second serve long). 30/40 (BP #1). Govortsova saved it with a crosscourt forehand winner. Deuce #1. Second serve... Govortsova’s deep backhand forced Rezaď to net a forehand. Ad Govortsova (GP #1). Deep second serve: backhand return long. Held.

Rezaď serving 4-4: Rezaď, on the third stroke, hit a crosscourt forehand winner. 15/0. Ace #5: first serve down the middle. 30/0. Virtual ace: first serve down the middle. 40/0 (GP #1). Rezaď forced a short ball, but dumped a forehand into the net. 40/15 (GP #2). Ace #6: first serve down the middle. Held.

Rezaď got her coach onto court to talk to her for the second time in the set. She was allowed to do this because the first time was during Govortsova’s medical timeout.

Govortsova serving 4-5: Second serve: Rezaď netted a forehand return. 15/0. Rezaď hit a down-the-line forehand winner. 15/15. First serve out wide: forehand return long. 30/15. Rezaď’s deep forehand return forced Govortsova to hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 30/30. Govortsova went to the net behind a deep crosscourt forehand, forcing Rezaď to hit a forehand long. 40/30 (GP #1). Govortsova opened up the court with a first serve out wide, and hit a forehand winner down her backhand sideline. Held.

Rezaď serving 5-5: First serve out wide + down-the-line forehand winner. 15/0. Ace #7: first serve down the middle. 30/0. Double fault #1 (second serve into the net). 30/15. Rezaď’s second serve was called long but overruled as good, so she got to replay the point with a first serve (if I could change one rule of tennis, that would be it: she would only get a second serve after such an overrule). On the replay, Govortsova netted a backhand. 40/15 (GP #1). Ace #8: first serve out wide. Held.

Govortsova serving 5-6: Govortsova netted an off-backhand on the third stroke. 0/15. Rezaď hit a down-the-line forehand winner just inside the sideline. 0/30. Double fault #2 (second serve into the net). 0/40 (SP #1 for Rezaď). Govortsova hit a forehand very long. Rezaď won the first set 7-5 at 18:59 BST (43m).


Second set
----------
REZAĎ 0
GOVOR 0 retired

Rezaď serving 0-0: First serve down the middle: Govortsova netted a backhand return. 15/0. Govortsova netted a forehand return. 30/0. Rezaď won 7-5 0-0 (Govortsova retired with a left-ankle sprain) at 19:02 BST (second set 3m, match 46m).

--
Dr. Andrew Broad

andrewbroad
Oct 10th, 2011, 03:33 PM
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AEGON CLASSIC (Edgbaston, Birmingham, England; grass; WTA International)
=============
Contents
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1. Photos
2. Second-round eyewitness report: Hantuchová v Cîrstea
3. Second-round eyewitness report: Lisicki v Flipkens
4. Second-round eyewitness report: Ivanović v Tatishvili

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1. Photos (Wednesday 8th June 2011)
---------

Permission to copy my Birmingham photos is granted provided that:
(a) no money is exchanged;
(b) they are labelled as “Copyright Andrew Broad 2011”.
Please let me know if you do use them on another website.

Since I don’t have time to upload hundreds of photos a day individually, I have uploaded each batch of photos as a large zip-file (approximately as many megabytes as photos).

Should my Divshare download-limit be exceeded, it will be reset on 17th October 2011.

Wednesday’s photos are in three volumes.


Wednesday Part 1 (Photos 001 to 153)
----------------

http://www.divshare.com/download/15910959-e9e

Daniela Hantuchová (96 photos)
Sorana Cîrstea (73)
Yaroslava Shvedova (2)
Marina Eraković (1)
Alison Riske (1)
Julia Glushko (1)
Sarah Gronert (1)

Part 1 consists mainly of Daniela Hantuchová v Sorana Cîrstea up to the rain-delay at 0:0 2-0* 30/30, and the three rain-interrupted attempts to resume their match.

Photo 003 is an unintended masterpiece. I love the way that the camera has stripped out the background, leaving Yaroslava Shvedova against a background of almost pure white light, although if you look ever so carefully, you can see what appears to be some kind of writing.

I love Daniela’s pose at the coin-toss (Photo 017). Photo 047 is a funny one from the warm-up: her hood flew up and got stuck on her head. I love the look on her face as she came back onto court after the first rain-delay (Photo 083). She and Cîrstea looked funnier and funnier each time they came back out (Photos 095 and 140), while Photo 100 is a great one of them both at the net with the umpire.


Wednesday Part 2 (Photos 154 to 324)
----------------

http://www.divshare.com/download/15911141-077

Sabine Lisicki (90 photos)
Daniela Hantuchová (44)
Kirsten Flipkens (25)
Sorana Cîrstea (22)
Yaroslava Shvedova (5)
Marina Eraković (4)
Christina McHale (4)
Sara Errani (2)
Péng,Shuŕi (1)

Part 2 consists mainly of the resumption of Daniela Hantuchová v Sorana Cîrstea after the rain-delays, and Sabine Lisicki v Kirsten Flipkens.

I got some great close-ups of Sabine as she came off Court 1 (Photos 316 to 324). Her smile was amazing, and there was a moment between Photos 323 and 324 when we were pretty much alone together, which made me go weak at the knees. No doubt I would have gone even weaker, had I realised that I was just 15 days away from inducting her into my Eternal Fanship.


Wednesday Part 3 (Photos 325 to 473)
----------------

http://www.divshare.com/download/15911444-580

Naomi Broady (47 photos)
Ana Ivanović (42)
Péng,Shuŕi (41)
Anna Tatishvili (26)
Sara Errani (2)
Christina McHale (2)

Part 3 features Ana Ivanović v Anna Tatishvili, and Péng,Shuŕi v Naomi Broady. Photo 333 is a great one of Ivanović. Photo 415 is a splendid one of Broady. Photo 437 captures the speedlines on Péng’s two-handed forehand – one advantage of the fading light.

Broady was absolutely devastated when she lost (Photo 467), having led 1:1 4-1*. She left the court in floods of tears (Photos 470 to 473). Someone tried to console her by telling her that she had a great future ahead of her, but the harsh reality is that this kind of match can make or break the career of someone ranked too low to play regularly at Tour level. Broady was ranked #231 at the time, reached a career-high of #206 in September, but the 21-year-old has the potential to go much higher, as she has a massive serve.

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2. Second-round eyewitness report: Hantuchová v Cîrstea (Wednesday 8th June 2011)
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+ DANIELA HANTUCHOVÁ [4,EF] d. Sorana Cîrstea, 6-0 6-3

This match suffered an incredible five rain-delays (including the one that delayed the start of play), as short showers were interleaved with brief periods of sunshine over a frustrating five-hour period for all concerned. The actual playing-time only amounted to 53 minutes.

In the eight minutes of play between the first two rain-delays, Daniela took a 2-0* (30/30) lead. They then had three warm-ups without being able to resume the match, and finally an uninterrupted passage of play in which Daniela immediately rediscovered her brilliant form.

Cîrstea is an extremely aggressive player, who didn’t panic after losing the first set 6-0, but held to 15 to avoid the double bagel at the start of the second. However, Daniela kept up the good work without even a hint of a choke, breaking for 1:0 *3-2.

At 1:0 *3-2 0/15, Daniela hit arguably the shot of the match: a brilliant crosscourt forehand winner just inside the sideline – despite being pushed back on her heels by a deep return. She hit two other crosscourt forehand winners in that game – one of them a drive-volley.

Daniela broke again in the last game of the match, hitting a super off-backhand dropshot-winner from a deep position to set up match-point at 1:0 5-3* 40/30*, which she converted when Cîrstea hit a backhand just long.


First set
---------
CÎRSTEA ______ 0
HANTUCH @*@*@* 6

The match was first on Centre Court, and started at 11:47 BST in cold conditions after rain had delayed the start of play (which had been scheduled for 11:00 BST).

Cîrstea serving 0-0: Daniela hit a crosscourt forehand just inside the sideline, forcing Cîrstea to net a forehand. 0/15. Daniela’s crosscourt forehand clipped the netcord and dropped dead for a winner. 0/30. Cîrstea netted a forehand on the third stroke. 0/40 (BP #1). Cîrstea, again on the third stroke, hit a backhand long. Broken.

Hantuchová serving 1-0: Cîrstea hit an off-backhand return-winner just inside the sideline. 0/15. Daniela played a good spreading rally, her crosscourt forehand opening up the court for a crosscourt backhand winner. 15/15. Cîrstea hit a crosscourt forehand return-winner. 15/30. Cîrstea, on the fourth stroke, hit a down-the-line backhand just long. 30/30. Daniela hit a crosscourt forehand winner. 40/30 (GP #1). Daniela, on the third stroke, hit another crosscourt forehand winner. Held.

Cîrstea serving 0-2: Cîrstea’s deep forehand forced Daniela to net a forehand. 15/0. Cîrstea, on the third stroke, hit a forehand long. 15/15. Daniela hit a crosscourt backhand deep into the corner, forcing Cîrstea to net a backhand. 15/30. Raindrops started falling. Second serve: Daniela hit an off-forehand return wide. 30/30. Cîrstea missed her first serve, and a sudden downpour of rain forced the match to be suspended at 11:55 BST. They came back three times only to be rained off again during the warm-up, and it was fourth time providential as the match resumed at 16:02 BST (total delay 4h07m). Cîrstea got another first serve, missed it, and Daniela hit an off-forehand winner just inside the sideline. 30/40 (BP #1). Cîrstea hit a shot that looked long but wasn’t called, and ended up winning the point with an off-backhand winner just inside the sideline. Deuce #1. Cîrstea crosscourt backhand just wide. Ad Hantuchová (BP #2). Double fault #1 (second serve just long).

It was cold and windy after the rain-delays. Cîrstea came out from the changeover very early (on the Friday evening, she would play a doubles-match in very cold conditions; my abiding memory of that match is of Cîrstea running to her chair in the middle of a game to put her coat on).

Hantuchová serving 3-0: Daniela’s deep crosscourt backhand forced Cîrstea to net a backhand. 15/0. Ace #1: first serve out wide. 30/0. First serve out wide forced Cîrstea to net a forehand return. 40/0 (GP #1). Daniela hit a pinpoint crosscourt forehand winner just inside the sideline. Held.

Cîrstea serving 0-4: Cîrstea netted a forehand on the third stroke. 0/15. Second serve: Daniela hit a forehand return-winner down Cîrstea’s forehand sideline. 0/30. Cîrstea, on the third stroke, hit a down-the-line forehand winner onto the baseline. 15/30. Daniela netted a backhand. 30/30. Cîrstea netted a forehand. 30/40 (BP #1). Cîrstea forehand long. Broken.

Hantuchová serving 5-0: A bee attacked Cîrstea just before Daniela’s first serve, which induced her to hit a crosscourt forehand return very long. 15/0. Cîrstea hit a huge off-forehand winner that clipped the baseline and flew into Stand D. 15/15. Daniela’s forehand clipped the netcord and fell back on her side. 15/30. First serve out wide forced Cîrstea to hit a crosscourt backhand return wide. 30/30. Deep first serve forced Cîrstea to net a backhand return. 40/30 (SP #1 for Hantuchová). Deep first serve out wide forced Cîrstea to hit a backhand return long. Hantuchová won the first set 6-0 at 16:14 BST (4h27m gross, 20m net).


Second set
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CÎRSTEA *_*___*__ 3
HANTUCH _*_*@*_*@ 6

Cîrstea serving 0-0: Second serve... Cîrstea forced a short ball, and hit a crosscourt forehand that forced Daniela to net a forehand. 15/0. Cîrstea, on the third stroke, clipped the sideline with a crosscourt forehand winner. 30/0. First serve down the middle forced Daniela to net a backhand return. 40/0 (GP #1). Second serve: Daniela hit a body-jamming crosscourt backhand return at Cîrstea’s feet, forcing her to net a forehand. 40/15 (GP #2). Deep first serve on the sideline forced Daniela to hit a down-the-line forehand wide. Held.

Hantuchová serving 0-1 (new balls): Double fault #1 (both serves into the net). 0/15. Second serve: backhand return very long. 15/15. First serve out wide: Cîrstea netted a wild forehand return. 30/15. Virtual ace: first serve down the middle. 40/15 (GP #1). Second serve out wide + off-forehand winner deep in the corner. Held.

Cîrstea serving 1-1: Forehand return very long. 15/0. First serve: forehand return just long. 30/0. Second serve: forehand return very long. 40/0 (GP #1). Cîrstea went to the net, forcing Daniela to hit a forehand long. Held.

Hantuchová serving 1-2: Second serve out wide + crosscourt backhand forced Cîrstea to hit a down-the-line backhand pass wide. 15/0. Cîrstea hit a wild backhand return very long. 30/0. Second serve out wide induced Cîrstea to net a forehand return. 40/0 (GP #1). First serve out wide forced Cîrstea to net a backhand return. Held.

Cîrstea serving 2-2: Cîrstea went to the net, but Daniela hit a down-the-line forehand pass-winner. 0/15. Daniela hit a pinpoint off-forehand winner down the line, pumped her fist and said “c’mon”. 0/30. Daniela hit an off-backhand that appeared to clip the sideline for a winner; she said “c’mon”, but the umpire called it wide. 15/30. Second serve... Daniela’s lob forced Cîrstea to retreat from the net, but she won the point from the baseline with an off-forehand winner. 30/30. Second serve... Cîrstea netted a forehand. 30/40 (BP #1). Cîrstea forehand just long. Broken.

Cîrstea got her coach to come onto court and talk to her at the changeover.

Hantuchová serving 3-2: Daniela, on the third stroke, hit a crosscourt backhand just long. 0/15. Cîrstea’s deep return pushed Daniela back on her heels, but she came up with a brilliant crosscourt forehand winner just inside the sideline! 15/15. Daniela forced a floater, and dispatched it with a high forehand drive-volley winner crosscourt. 30/15. Cîrstea’s deep down-the-line backhand return forced Daniela to earth a forehand. 30/30. First serve out wide + down-the-line forehand winner. 40/30 (GP #1). Daniela, on the third stroke, hit a big crosscourt forehand that forced Cîrstea to net a forehand. Held.

Cîrstea serving 2-4: Deep first serve down the middle forced Daniela to net a one-handed backhand return. 15/0. A ballboy dropped a ball, causing Cîrstea to wait before serving. First serve down the middle forced Daniela to net a backhand return. 30/0. Deep first serve on the service-line forced Daniela to hit a forehand return very long. 40/0 (GP #1). Second serve... Daniela hit a crosscourt forehand winner just inside the sideline. 40/15 (GP #2). Second serve... Daniela netted a makeable forehand return. Held.

Hantuchová serving 4-3: First serve out wide forced Cîrstea to hit a down-the-line forehand return wide. 15/0. Deep first serve down the middle – just inside the centre-line – forced Cîrstea to earth a forehand return. 30/0. Second serve... Daniela hit a deep forehand down the line, forcing Cîrstea to net a backhand. 40/0 (GP #1). Double fault #2 (second serve just long). 40/15 (GP #2). Daniela punished a sliced forehand return with an off-forehand winner down the line. Held.

Cîrstea serving 3-5: Cîrstea, on the third stroke, netted a cheap forehand. 0/15. Double fault #2 (second serve into the net). 0/30. Deep second serve out wide induced Daniela to hit a forehand return long. 15/30. Cîrstea, on the third stroke, hit an off-forehand winner back behind Daniela. 30/30. Daniela hit a super off-backhand dropshot-winner from a deep position. 30/40 (MP #1 for Hantuchová). Second serve... Cîrstea, on the third stroke, hit a backhand just long. Hantuchová won 6-0 6-3 at 16:47 BST (second set 33m; match 5h00m gross, 53m net).

Daniela’s on-court interview: “Strong [?]... focus. Of course I do. My first visit [to Birmingham] was in 2001. It’s great to come back. I tried to keep my energy tired [?]. I was bored [during the rain-delays]; I just wanted to be out here. No – I was always ready!”

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3. Second-round eyewitness report: Lisicki v Flipkens (Wednesday 8th June 2011)
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+ Sabine Lisicki [DF] d. Kirsten Flipkens, 7-5 7-6 (7/3)

Sabine had a pretty miserable time in cold, rainy conditions out on Court One (there was a half-hour rain-delay at 0:0 2-3*), being *2-4 down in both sets to a tricky grass-court opponent, but her superior talent shone through in the end, along with her amazing smile when she won.

Sabine was in all sorts of trouble in the first set: she was broken in the third game, had to save two further break-points at *1-3, and recovered from *2-4 (15/30). She hit a glorious backpedalling forehand smash-winner at *4-4 (40/15), missed some cheap returns at 5-4*, but scored a commanding hold to love at *5-5, and converted her fifth set-point after six deuces at 6-5*.

Sabine was broken at the start of the second set, and consequently trailed *2-4. After an on-court chat with her father at 3-4*, she broke back with the help of crosscourt backhand and forehand winners, and a forehand smash-winner for *4-4. She was now handling Flipkens’s dropshots much better than in the first set.

The next four games went comfortably with serve, so the second set was decided by a tiebreak. At *2/1, Sabine put herself firmly in charge as she ripped a crosscourt backhand winner off a good deep forehand from Flipkens. At 5/1*, she ran down a dropshot and hit an off-forehand winner to give herself three match-points. Flipkens saved the first with a smash, Sabine choked on the second, but it was third time providential as she nailed a pinpoint backhand pass-winner down the line.


First set
---------
LISICKI *___*_*@*_*@ 7
FLIPKEN _*@*_*___*__ 5

The match was second on Court One, and started at 16:52 BST.

Lisicki serving 0-0: Having only five minutes to get from Centre Court to Court One (Daniela Hantuchová sealed victory against Sorana Cîrstea at 16:47 BST), I missed the first point. 15/0. Flipkens forehand long. 30/0. Sabine netted a backhand. 40/0 (GP #1). Service-winner. Held.

Flipkens serving 0-1: Forehand return long. 15/0. Sabine went to the net and hit a crosscourt forehand drop-volley winner. 15/15. Second serve... Sabine netted a backhand. 30/15. Backhand return long. 40/15 (GP #1). Second serve... Flipkens netted a sliced backhand. 40/30 (GP #2). Sabine ran down a dropshot but netted a forehand. Held.

Lisicki serving 1-1: Ace #1: first serve out wide. 15/0. Sabine hit an inadequate dropshot, enabling Flipkens to hit a forehand winner down the line. 15/15. Second serve: crosscourt backhand return wide. 30/30. Second serve... Sabine netted a forehand. 30/40 (BP #1). Sabine pushed an off-forehand just wide. Broken.

Flipkens serving 2-1: Flipkens went to the net, but Sabine’s lob forced her to retreat and hit a defensive backhand lob; Sabine’s forehand smash forced Flipkens to net a forehand. 0/15. Flipkens hit an off-forehand dropshot-winner, and Sabine complained about the lack of a line-call. 15/15. Second serve: Sabine hit a big backhand return down the line, forcing Flipkens to net a backhand. 15/30. Sabine crosscourt backhand wide. 30/30. Sabine hit a big forehand return down the line, forcing Flipkens to net a backhand. 30/40 (BP #1). Second serve... Flipkens opened up the court, and hit a crosscourt sliced backhand winner. Deuce #1. Flipkens hit a forehand dropshot-winner down the line. Ad Flipkens (GP #1). Sabine blasted a forehand return into the net. Held.

Lisicki serving 1-3: Flipkens slipped over, but her crosscourt forehand dropshot induced Sabine to hit a forehand just long. 0/15. Flipkens forehand long. 15/15. Flipkens hit a stunning forehand winner down the line. 15/30. Sabine, on the third stroke, hit an off-backhand winner. 30/30. Sabine, on the third stroke, hit an off-forehand winner onto the sideline. 40/30 (GP #1). Sabine netted a backhand on the third stroke. Deuce #1. Flipkens hit a forehand smash-winner down the line. Ad Flipkens (BP #1). First serve: Flipkens netted a backhand return. Deuce #2. Sabine dominated the rally and went to the net, with great retrieving from Flipkens until Sabine’s forehand smash forced her to net a forehand. Ad Lisicki (GP #2). It seems that I missed a point here, as my notes only say “Raindrops.” Deuce #3. Sabine lob long. Ad Flipkens (BP #2). First serve out wide forced Flipkens to hit a backhand return long. Deuce #4. Flipkens netted a forehand. Ad Lisicki (GP #3). Flipkens netted a forehand return. Held.

N.B. I’m honestly not sure how my point-descriptions align with the scores between “Ad Flipkens (BP #1)” and “Deuce #3” in that game. I think that I either missed a point at “Ad Lisicki (GP #2)”, or that the first serve at “Ad Flipkens (BP #1)” was actually a fault and the point at “Deuce #2” was therefore still “Ad Flipkens (BP #1)”. I cannot confirm from my other sources that Sabine actually had two advantages in that game, so I’m more inclined to believe the latter: that she saved break-point with that smash.

The match was suspended due to rain at 17:12 BST, and resumed at 17:42 BST (30m).

Flipkens serving 3-2: Sabine netted an off-backhand return. 15/0. Sabine mishit a backhand lob-return just long. 30/0. Sabine painted the sideline with an off-forehand winner. 30/15. Sabine ran down a dropshot but netted a backhand. 40/15 (GP #1). Flipkens went to the net behind a low-bouncing approach, forcing Sabine to net a backhand. Held.

Sabine stared pensively at her racket.

Lisicki serving 2-4: Flipkens netted a forehand. 15/0. Second serve... Sabine ran down a dropshot but hit an off-backhand wide. 15/15. Flipkens hit a crosscourt backhand winner, and pumped her fist. 15/30. First serve out wide – on the sideline – forced Flipkens to net a backhand return. 30/30. Ace #2: first serve down the middle. 40/30 (GP #1). First serve out wide + high forehand volley-winner crosscourt. Held.

Flipkens serving 4-3 (new balls): Double fault #1 (second serve long). 0/15. Sabine netted a backhand return. 15/15. Sabine hit an off-backhand return-winner. 15/30. Double fault #2 (second serve clipped the netcord and fell wide); Flipkens yelled “ah!” 15/40 (BP #1). First serve: forehand return long. 30/40 (BP #2). Flipkens went to the net, forcing Sabine to hit a crosscourt backhand lob wide. Deuce #1. Sabine hit a down-the-line forehand return-winner. Ad Lisicki (BP #3). Sabine’s backhand return clipped the netcord, forcing Flipkens to net a forehand half-volley. Broken.

Lisicki serving 4-4: First serve: Flipkens netted a forehand return. 15/0. Sabine’s backhand dropshot forced Flipkens to net a forehand. 30/0. Second serve... Sabine netted a backhand on the third stroke. 30/15. Flipkens hit a down-the-line forehand just wide. 40/15 (GP #1). Sabine went to the net; Flipkens’s awkward lob forced Sabine to backstep, but she pulled off a glorious off-forehand smash-winner, and said “ah yes!” Held.

Flipkens serving 4-5: First serve out wide: Sabine netted a forehand return. 15/0. First serve: forehand return long. 30/0. Double fault #3 (second serve just long). 30/15. Second serve: backhand return long. 40/15 (GP #1). Second serve: crosscourt forehand return just wide. Held.

Lisicki serving 5-5: With the wind rising, Sabine served Ace #3: a first serve down the middle. 15/0. Sabine hit a sliced forehand crosscourt into the corner, forcing Flipkens to net a forehand. 30/0. Deep first serve down the middle forced Flipkens to earth a backhand return. 40/0 (GP #1). Sabine hit a backhand volley from no-man’s-land, and a down-the-line backhand winner. “C’mon,” she said. Held.

Flipkens serving 5-6: Sabine hit a deep crosscourt forehand winner, and pumped her fist. 0/15. Ace #1: first serve out wide, on the sideline. 15/15. Sabine hit a crosscourt forehand pass-winner back behind Flipkens, and said “c’mon”. 15/30. Sabine’s depth induced Flipkens to hit a forehand long; Flipkens complained about the lack of a call. 15/40 (SP #1 for Lisicki). Sabine hit a deep return, but Flipkens handled it with an early crosscourt forehand winner. 30/40 (SP #2 for Lisicki). First serve: backhand return just long. Deuce #1. First serve out wide + crosscourt backhand winner onto the sideline. Ad Flipkens (GP #1). Sabine hit a deep crosscourt forehand return down the middle, inducing Flipkens to mishit an off-forehand wide. Deuce #2. Ace #2: second serve out wide, on the sideline. Ad Flipkens (GP #2). Sabine ran down a dropshot and hit a down-the-line forehand winner. Deuce #3. Ace #3: first serve down the middle, on the centre-line. Ad Flipkens (GP #3). A good serve forced a short return, but Flipkens hit an off-forehand just wide. Deuce #4. Sabine’s dropshot induced Flipkens to net a forehand. Ad Lisicki (SP #3). Flipkens forced a short ball, and dispatched it with an off-forehand winner. Deuce #5. Sabine’s deep forehand return forced Flipkens to net a forehand. Ad Lisicki (SP #4). First serve out wide: Sabine netted a cheap backhand return. Deuce #6. Sabine hit a deep return down the middle, inducing Flipkens to net a forehand. Ad Lisicki (SP #5). In a nail-biting rally, Flipkens went to the net, but netted a backhand volley. Lisicki won the first set 7-5 at 18:08 BST (1h16m).

Flipkens got her coach (not Ann Devries, but a man whom I don’t recognise) to come onto court and talk to her at the set-break.


Second set
----------
LISICKI __*_*_*@*_*_T 7(7)
FLIPKEN @*_*_*___*_*_ 6(3)

Lisicki serving 0-0: Sabine netted a forehand on the third stroke. 0/15. Sabine lost the point by doing “BLBAW” (I cannot for the life of me remember what that stands for – clearly not “backhand long backhand approach winner” as that does not make sense, and probably not “backhand long and wide” as my code for that would be “BL&w”). 0/30. Second serve... Sabine forehand just long. 0/40 (BP #1). Second serve... Sabine hit an off-forehand virtual winner. 15/40 (BP #2). First serve out wide: Flipkens netted a forehand return. 30/40 (BP #3). Second serve... Sabine crosscourt backhand wide. Broken.

Flipkens serving 1-0: Forehand return long. 15/0. Sabine hit a huge backhand return-winner down the line. 15/15. Sabine’s low-bouncing forehand forced Flipkens to net a forehand. 15/30. First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand volley-winner. 30/30. First serve out wide: Sabine netted a forehand return. 40/30 (GP #1). First serve out wide: Sabine netted a backhand return. Held.

Lisicki serving 0-2: Sabine ran around her backhand and netted an off-forehand. 0/15. Sabine ran down a dropshot and hit an off-forehand winner onto the baseline. 15/15. Flipkens went to the net, but Sabine hit a crosscourt backhand pass-winner. 30/15. Flipkens’s short-angled crosscourt backhand forced Sabine to net a backhand. 30/30. Flipkens hit an off-forehand smash-winner. 30/40 (BP #1). Flipkens mishit a backhand into the net. Deuce #1. First serve down the middle: forehand return long. Ad Lisicki (GP #1). Second serve: Flipkens netted a cheap backhand return. Held.

Flipkens serving 2-1: Deep first serve down the middle forced Sabine to net a backhand return. 15/0. Second serve... Sabine hit a down-the-line backhand wide. 30/0. Sabine ran down a dropshot, but sprayed a crosscourt forehand long and wide. 40/0 (GP #1). Service-winner out wide. Held.

Lisicki serving 1-3 (new balls): First serve forced a short return, which Sabine dispatched with a crosscourt forehand winner. 15/0. Sabine hit a crosscourt backhand dropshot-winner. 30/0. Ace #4: first serve out wide. 40/0 (GP #1). Flipkens hit a big crosscourt forehand return-winner. 40/15 (GP #2). Sabine hit a backhand lob wide. 40/30 (GP #3). Second serve down the middle forced Flipkens to stretch wide and net a forehand return. Held.

Flipkens serving 3-2: Deep first serve down the middle induced Sabine to mishit a backhand lob-return wide. 15/0. Deep first serve out wide forced Sabine to net a backhand return. 30/0. Sabine dumped a crosscourt backhand into the bottom of the net. 40/0 (GP #1). Flipkens’s dropshot forced Sabine – run though she did – to net a forehand. Held.

Raindrops started falling again as Sabine prepared to serve.

Lisicki serving 2-4: Double fault #1 (second serve very long). 0/15. Ace #5: first serve down the middle. 15/15. Sabine ran around her backhand and netted an off-forehand. 15/30. Ace #6: first serve out wide, on the sideline (I must admit: it looked wide). 30/30. Deep first serve forced Flipkens to earth a backhand return. 40/30 (GP #1). A low-bouncing ball from Flipkens induced Sabine to net a sliced backhand. Deuce #1. Ace #7: first serve down the middle. Ad Lisicki (GP #2). Ace #8: first serve down the middle. Held.

Sabine got her coach (Dr Richard Lisicki) to come onto court and talk to her at the changeover.

Flipkens serving 4-3: Ace #3: first serve out wide. 15/0. Sabine hit a crosscourt backhand winner (Flipkens’s backhand was “not up”). 15/15. Deep first serve induced Sabine to net a forehand return – but the serve must have been long, because my notes then say that Flipkens hit an off-forehand wide. 15/30. Second serve... Flipkens hit an off-forehand onto the sideline: it was called wide but overruled as good, so they had to replay the point. Sabine hit a crosscourt forehand winner, pumped her fist and said “c’mon”. 15/40 (BP #1). Flipkens hit an off-forehand onto the baseline, forcing Sabine to hit a backhand long. 30/40 (BP #2). Flipkens drew Sabine to the net with a dropshot, but the tactic backfired as Sabine ended up hitting a forehand smash-winner and saying “c’mon”. Broken.

Lisicki serving 4-4: Sabine, on the third stroke, hit a sneaky crosscourt forehand dropshot-winner. 15/0. Sabine hit an off-forehand onto the sideline, forcing Flipkens to net a backhand. Flipkens told the umpire that Sabine’s shot was wide; he said it was inside the line; she told him to “wake up”. 30/0. Service-winner: first serve out wide. 40/0 (GP #1). Flipkens forehand long. Held.

Flipkens serving 4-5: Flipkens’s deep off-forehand forced Sabine to hit a backhand lob wide. 15/0. Sabine’s deep crosscourt forehand induced Flipkens to hit a forehand halfway up the net. 15/15. Sabine hit a dropshot, but Flipkens returned the favour with a crosscourt forehand dropshot-winner. 30/15. Sabine hit a crosscourt forehand long. 40/15 (GP #1). First serve out wide: crosscourt forehand wide. Held.

Lisicki serving 5-5: Double fault #2 (wild second serve very long). 0/15. Flipkens backhand long. 15/15. Deep second serve: Flipkens hit a down-the-line forehand return-winner. 15/30. Ace #9: first serve out wide. 30/30. Sabine hit a crosscourt forehand winner, and said “c’mon”. 40/30 (GP #1). Ace #10: second serve down the middle clipped the outside edge of the centre-line. Held.

Raindrops started falling again.

Flipkens serving 5-6: Flipkens netted a backhand. 0/15. Flipkens went to the net, forcing Sabine to hit a backhand lob long. 15/15. Sabine hit an off-backhand return wide. 30/15. Ace #4: first serve out wide, on the sideline. 40/15 (GP #1). First serve out wide: Sabine netted a forehand return. Held.

The rain stopped. It was cold and windy.

6-6 tiebreak (all scores Lisicki/Flipkens):
{*0/0} Sabine’s forehand dropshot forced Flipkens to net a forehand.
{1/0*} Flipkens’s crosscourt forehand approach forced Sabine to hit a crosscourt forehand wide.
{1/1*} Flipkens forehand long.
{*2/1} Second serve... Flipkens hit a deep forehand just inside the baseline, but Sabine ripped a crosscourt backhand winner, and said “c’mon”.
{*3/1} Sabine’s first serve out wide + crosscourt backhand forced Flipkens to net a backhand.
{4/1*} Sabine’s deep backhand return induced Flipkens to net a backhand.
{5/1*} Second serve... Flipkens hit a forehand dropshot, but Sabine ran it down and hit an off-forehand winner.
{*6/1: MP #1 for Lisicki} Second serve... Flipkens forced a floater, and dispatched it with a forehand smash-winner.
{*6/2: MP #2 for Lisicki} Second serve... Sabine forced a short ball, but dumped a forehand into the net.
{6/3*: MP #3 for Lisicki} Flipkens went to the net, but Sabine hit a pinpoint down-the-line backhand pass-winner, and shouted “c’mon”. Lisicki won 7-5 7-6 (7/3) at 18:57 BST (second set 48m, match 2h05m).

--------------------------------------------------------
4. Second-round eyewitness report: Ivanović v Tatishvili (Wednesday 8th June 2011)
--------------------------------------------------------

+ ANA IVANOVIĆ [2,DF] d. Anna Tatishvili, 6-1 6-0

After being broken at the start of the match despite two game-points, Ivanović crushed her opponent with the most brilliant performance I’ve ever seen from her, including those with which she won the French Open 2008.

Ivanović was hitting the ball harder than any player I’ve ever seen at Birmingham except Maria Sharapova, and very often just inside the lines. Whenever her first serves hit the back fence, they made an enormous clang. It was easy to see why she’s a former world #1 and Major champion, and harder to understand why she’s in such a deep slump when she can play like this.

The match was played at a breakneck pace, with Ivanović taking very little time between points. Tatishvili was hitting the ball pretty hard herself, but Ivanović’s performance simply left her shellshocked. It was the only time so far that I’ve ever seen Tatishvili play: my other general observation is that she has a very high service-toss.


First set
---------
TATISHVI @______ 1
IVANOVIĆ _@*@*@* 6

The match was third on Centre Court. Tatishvili won the toss and chose to receive, and the match started at 19:11 BST.

Ivanović serving 0-0: Second serve... Ivanović netted a forehand on the third stroke. 0/15. Ace #1: first serve down the middle, on the centre-line. 15/15. Tatishvili netted a forehand. 30/15. Ivanović netted a forehand. 30/30. Ace #2: first serve out wide. 40/30 (GP #1). First serve forced a short return, but Ivanović wasted the opening with a wild crosscourt forehand long and wide. Deuce #1. Ace #3: first serve down the middle. Ad Ivanović (GP #2). Ivanović netted a backhand. Deuce #2. Tatishvili’s deep, body-jamming forehand return forced Ivanović to net a backhand. Ad Tatishvili (BP #1). Tatishvili hit a deep backhand return onto the baseline, forcing Ivanović to hit a forehand long. Broken.

Tatishvili serving 1-0: Ivanović’s short-angled crosscourt forehand return induced Tatishvili to net a forehand. 0/15. Ivanović’s deep return forced Tatishvili to net a backhand. 0/30. Tatishvili’s deep forehand forced Ivanović to earth a forehand. 15/30. Ivanović hit a deep forehand down the line, forcing Tatishvili to net a backhand. Ivanović said “ajde”. 15/40 (BP #1). Ivanović hit a short, low-bouncing ball that induced Tatishvili to net a forehand. Broken.

Ivanović serving 1-1: Tatishvili forced a short ball, but netted a backhand dropshot. 15/0. Ivanović hit a short-angled crosscourt backhand return onto the sideline, but Tatishvili handled it with a short-angled crosscourt backhand winner. 15/15. Deep second serve induced Tatishvili to hit a forehand lob-return long. 30/15. Tatishvili forehand very long. 40/15 (GP #1). Second serve... Ivanović hit a crosscourt forehand winner deep into the corner. Held.

Tatishvili serving 1-2: Second serve... Ivanović, driven wide, hit a pinpoint down-the-line forehand winner just inside the sideline, and said “ajde”. 0/15. Double fault #1 (second serve long). 0/30. Tatishvili slipped, and hit a backhand long. 0/40 (BP #1). Ivanović went to the net behind an off-forehand approach, and hit a high forehand punch-volley winner crosscourt. Broken.

Ivanović serving 3-1: Tatishvili netted a running backhand, and slid. 15/0. Second serve... Ivanović ran around her backhand to hit a pinpoint off-forehand winner just inside the sideline. 30/0. Ace #4: first serve down the middle. 40/0 (GP #1). Tatishvili’s depth forced Ivanović to net a sliced backhand. 40/15 (GP #2). Double fault #1 (second serve just long). 40/30 (GP #3). Double fault #2 (second serve long). Deuce #1. Virtual ace out wide. Ad Ivanović (GP #4). First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand winner just inside the sideline. Held.

Tatishvili serving 1-4: Second serve: Ivanović hit a crosscourt backhand return-winner. 0/15. Ivanović hit a crosscourt forehand winner. 0/30. Tatishvili backhand long. 0/40 (BP #1). Ivanović, driven wide, hit a pinpoint down-the-line backhand return-winner. Broken.

Ivanović serving 5-1: Second serve: forehand return long. 15/0. Ivanović netted a backhand on the third stroke. 15/15. Second serve: Tatishvili hit a forehand return-winner down the line. 15/30. Tatishvili crosscourt backhand just wide. 30/30. Ivanović hit a crosscourt backhand + off-forehand winner. 40/30 (SP #1 for Ivanović). Tatishvili hit an off-forehand wide. Ivanović won the first set 6-1 at 19:34 BST (23m).

N.B. The official statistics say that Ivanović served three aces in that set, but I saw her serve four aces, and have therefore decided to override the official ace-numbering with my own.


Second set
----------
TATISHVI ______ 0
IVANOVIĆ @*@*@* 6

Tatishvili serving 0-0 (new balls): Ivanović hit a crosscourt forehand winner onto the sideline. 0/15. Ivanović tried to go to the net, but got caught in no-man’s-land as Tatishvili hit a backhand pass-winner down the line. 15/15. Tatishvili opened up the court beautifully with a crosscourt backhand, but hit a down-the-line backhand long. 15/30. Double fault #2 (second serve very long). 15/40 (BP #1). Ivanović hit a deep crosscourt forehand return, forcing Tatishvili to net a forehand. Broken.

Ivanović serving 1-0: Ivanović netted a forehand on the third stroke. 0/15. Tatishvili forced a short ball, and dispatched it with a crosscourt backhand winner. 0/30. Deep, body-jamming first serve forced Tatishvili to hit an off-backhand return wide. 15/30. Deep first serve out wide forced Tatishvili to earth a backhand return. 30/30. Double fault #3 (second serve into the net). 30/40 (BP #1). Ivanović saved it with a crosscourt backhand winner just inside the sideline. Deuce #1. Ivanović hit a crosscourt forehand + pinpoint off-forehand winner down the line. Ad Ivanović (GP #1). Tatishvili slipped at the centre of the baseline as Ivanović hit an off-forehand winner. Held.

Tatishvili serving 0-2: Ace #1: first serve out wide, on the service-line. 15/0. Ivanović’s return forced a short ball, which she dispatched with an off-forehand winner on the fourth stroke. 15/15. First serve out wide forced Ivanović to net a forehand return. 30/15. Ivanović hit an off-forehand winner just inside the sideline. 30/30. Double fault #3 (second serve just long). 30/40 (BP #1). Ivanović blasted an off-forehand return long. Deuce #1. Tatishvili hit a short-angled crosscourt forehand winner. Ad Tatishvili (GP #1). First serve: Ivanović hit a crosscourt forehand return-winner deep into the corner. Deuce #2. Tatishvili sprayed a crosscourt forehand wide. Ad Ivanović (BP #2). Ivanović hit a short-angled crosscourt backhand return-winner. Broken.

Ivanović serving 3-0: Service-winner: first serve out wide. 15/0. Second serve... Ivanović hit a down-the-line forehand just wide. 15/15. Second serve: Tatishvili hit a wild forehand return very long. 30/15. Second serve... Double fault #4 (second serve into the net. 30/30. Deep first serve out wide forced Tatishvili to hit a forehand return long. 40/30 (GP #1). Ace #5: first serve out wide. Held.

Tatishvili serving 0-4: Tatishvili netted a backhand off a low-bouncing ball from Ivanović. 0/15. Ivanović netted a backhand. 15/15. Ivanović hit a crosscourt forehand return + pinpoint down-the-line forehand winner. 15/30. Ivanović hit a deep backhand return-winner down the line, just inside the baseline, and said “ajde”. 15/40 (BP #1). Second serve: Ivanović hit a crosscourt forehand return-winner just inside the sideline. Broken.

Ivanović serving 5-0: Deep first serve out wide forced Tatishvili to hit a forehand return long. 15/0. Ivanović went to the net, and hit an off-backhand volley-winner off a body-jamming ‘pass’ from Tatishvili. 30/0. Tatishvili went for a forehand winner down the line, but it was just wide. 40/0 (MP #1 for Ivanović). Double fault #5 (second serve long). 40/15 (MP #2 for Ivanović). Tatishvili hit a deep crosscourt forehand down the middle, forcing Ivanović to hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 40/30 (MP #3 for Ivanović). Second serve... a long rally ended with Tatishvili hitting a forehand long. Ivanović won 6-1 6-0 at 19:56 BST (second set 22m, match 45m).

Ivanović’s on-court interview: “It’s very tough. I just try my best on each point. I spent the rain-delay playing cards. I’m very pleased. It’s good to be back on grass again. The courts can be improved a lot [next year].”

--
Dr. Andrew Broad

andrewbroad
Nov 16th, 2011, 12:21 AM
=============
AEGON CLASSIC (Edgbaston, Birmingham, England; grass; WTA International)
=============
Contents
--------

1. Photos
2. Third-round eyewitness report: Hantuchová v Kudryavtseva
3. Third-round mini-report: Rezaď v Riske
4. Third-round eyewitness report: Lisicki v Paszek
5. Third-round eyewitness report: Rybáriková v Ar.Rodionova
6. First-round doubles eyewitness report: Rybáriková/Kanepi v Cîrstea/Eraković

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1. Photos (Thursday 9th June 2011)
---------

Permission to copy my Birmingham photos is granted provided that:
(a) no money is exchanged;
(b) they are labelled as “Copyright Andrew Broad 2011”.
Please let me know if you do use them on another website.

Since I don’t have time to upload hundreds of photos a day individually, I have uploaded each batch of photos as a large zip-file (approximately as many megabytes as photos).

Thursday’s photos are in three volumes.


Thursday Part 1 (Photos 001 to 150)
---------------

http://www.divshare.com/download/16173758-a06

Daniela Hantuchová (77 photos)
Sabine Lisicki (26)
Alla Kudryavtseva (20)
Aravane Rezaď (18)
Tamira Paszek (11)
Alison Riske (10)
Mirjana Lučić (1)


Thursday Part 2 (Photos 151 to 253)
---------------

http://www.divshare.com/download/16174114-12f

Magdaléna Rybáriková (73 photos)
Arina Rodionova (37)
Bojana Jovanovski (7)
Sabine Lisicki (3)
Tamira Paszek (3)
Anastasia Rodionova (3)
Alla Kudryavtseva (3)
Urszula Radwańska (2)
Olga Govortsova (2)
Jocelyn Rae (2)
Heather Watson (2)
Ekaterina Makarova (1)

Part 2 consists mainly of Magdaléna Rybáriková v Arina Rodionova.

Magda was by far the beauty of the day, with Photos 153, 163 (a leaping smash), 188 (serve), 191 and 236 (a close-up of her laughing as she came off Court 1) being especially great ones. Photo 236 is now the front-page photo of the Magdaléna Rybáriková Yahoo! Group (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/magdalenarybarikova/).


Thursday Part 3 (Photos 254 to 354)
---------------

http://www.divshare.com/download/16182776-afb

Magdaléna Rybáriková (65 photos)
Kaia Kanepi (39)
Sorana Cîrstea (33)
Marina Eraković (29)

Part 3 consists entirely of Rybáriková/Kanepi v Eraković/Cîrstea.

-----------------------------------------------------------
2. Third-round eyewitness report: Hantuchová v Kudryavtseva (Thursday 9th June 2011)
-----------------------------------------------------------

+ DANIELA HANTUCHOVÁ [4,EF] d. ALLA KUDRYAVTSEVA [16], 6-4 6-2

Daniela didn’t look as convincing as she did in her second-round win over Sorana Cîrstea. She served very well, but struggled to put pressure on Kudryavtseva’s serve after breaking at the start of the first set, which could have turned nasty, had she happened to throw in a bad service-game at any time.

Daniela was rather tentative when it came to serving out the first set, but fortunately she’s much less liable to choke than she was in the past. She’s much calmer now, and certainly likes to do things in her own sweet time: she was fashionably late for this match, and regularly took as much time as she could get away with at her chair.

Kudryavtseva made a terrible start to the second set, donating her first two service-games with double faults at break-point as Daniela took a 1:0 4-0* lead.

But Kudryavtseva, who sensationally upset Maria Sharapova at Wimbledon 2008 and then had the audacity to criticise Maria’s outfit, certainly showed her strong personality towards the end of the match, closing to 0:1 *2-4 before losing the last two games as the raindrops failed to amount to yet another rain-delay, despite the groundstaff being called to the courts.


First set
---------
KUDRYAVTSE __*_*_*_*_ 4
HANTUCHOVÁ @*_*_*_*_* 6

The match was first on Centre Court. Kudryavtseva won the toss and elected to serve, and the match started at 11:14 BST.

Kudryavtseva serving 0-0: Kudryavtseva hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 0/15. First serve out wide forced Daniela to earth a backhand return. 15/15. First serve out wide forced Daniela to hit a forehand return long. 30/15. Kudryavtseva mishit a forehand long. 30/30. Kudryavtseva hit an off-backhand wide. 30/40 (BP #1). Second serve... Kudryavtseva on the third stroke hit a forehand long. Broken.

Hantuchová serving 1-0: Kudryavtseva crosscourt forehand wide. 15/0. Daniela on the third stroke hit a backhand long. 15/15. Daniela went to the net, forcing Kudryavtseva to hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 30/15. First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand winner. 40/15 (GP #1). Kudryavtseva hit a crosscourt forehand winner onto the sideline. 40/30 (GP #2). Daniela, on the third stroke, hit a wild crosscourt forehand wide. Deuce #1. First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand winner back behind Kudryavtseva. Ad Hantuchová (GP #3). Daniela went to the net, but hit an off-backhand volley wide. Deuce #2. First serve down the middle forced Kudryavtseva to earth a backhand return. Ad Hantuchová (GP #4). First serve: backhand return long. Held.

Kudryavtseva serving 0-2: My notes say that Kudryavtseva served an ace out wide, although officially, she didn’t serve her first ace until *1-3. 15/0. Deep first serve down the middle, just inside the centre-line, forced Daniela to hit an off-forehand return wide. 30/0. Second serve: Daniela hit a down-the-line forehand return wide. 40/0 (GP #1). Second serve: Daniela netted a backhand return. Held.

Hantuchová serving 2-1: Deep first serve forced Kudryavtseva to hit a forehand long. 15/0. Ace #1: first serve down the middle, on the centre-line. 30/0. Deep first serve out wide forced Kudryavtseva to hit a forehand return long. 40/0 (GP #1). Deep first serve forced Kudryavtseva to net a forehand return. Held.

Kudryavtseva serving 1-3: Kudryavtseva had the initiative, but netted a forehand dropshot and yelled. 0/15. Second serve... Kudryavtseva hit an off-backhand winner down the line. 15/15. Daniela hit a short-angled crosscourt backhand winner. 15/30. Ace #1: first serve down the middle, on the centre-line. 30/30. First serve out wide forced Daniela to net a forehand return. 40/30 (GP #1). Daniela hit a makeable forehand return very long. Held.

Hantuchová serving 3-2: Daniela, on the third stroke, hit a delectable off-backhand dropshot-winner. 15/0. First serve: forehand return just long. 30/0. Deep first serve down the middle forced Kudryavtseva to lunge and earth a backhand return. 40/0 (GP #1). A netcord from Daniela invited Kudryavtseva to go to the net; Daniela netted a backhand. 40/15 (GP #2). Daniela netted a backhand on the third stroke. 40/30 (GP #3). First serve down the middle forced Kudryavtseva to net a forehand return. Held.

Kudryavtseva serving 2-4: First serve forced Daniela to hit a one-handed backhand return wide. 15/0. Daniela hit a deep backhand down the line, forcing Kudryavtseva to net a forehand. 15/15. Daniela hit a pinpoint forehand winner down the line. 15/30. My notes say that Kudryavtseva hit a second serve just long, but officially, she didn’t serve her first double fault until 0:1 *0-0. 30/30. Deep first serve out wide forced Daniela to net a forehand return. Daniela complained about the lack of a call. 40/30 (GP #1). Foot-fault. Second serve... Kudryavtseva netted a forehand on the third stroke. Deuce #1. Kudryavtseva hit an off-forehand winner, and said “c’mon”. Ad Kudryavtseva (GP #2). First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand winner back behind Daniela. Held.

It was getting cold and windy.

Hantuchová serving 4-3 (new balls): Daniela hit an off-backhand winner just inside the sideline. 15/0. Daniela’s backhand clipped the netcord and fell back on her side. 15/15. Ace #1: first serve down the middle, on the service-line. Kudryavtseva complained about the lack of a call. 30/15. First serve out wide (just inside the sideline) forced a floater, which Daniela dispatched with a high forehand volley-winner crosscourt. 40/15 (GP #1). First serve out wide forced a short return, which Daniela dispatched with an off-forehand winner down the line. Held.

Kudryavtseva serving 3-5: Daniela hit a crosscourt backhand just wide – off a deep, slow ball from Kudryavtseva. 15/0. Daniela’s low-bouncing return induced Kudryavtseva to net a forehand. 15/15. First serve out wide jammed into Daniela’s body, forced her to net a backhand return. 30/15. Daniela’s low-bouncing crosscourt backhand return forced Kudryavtseva to earth a backhand. 30/30. First serve: Daniela hit a forehand return very long. Kudryavtseva emitted a sharp “c’mon”. 40/30 (GP #1). Deep first serve down the middle looked like it caught the service-line, but was called long by the umpire. Second serve: Daniela hit an off-forehand return just wide. Held.

Hantuchová serving 5-4: Kudryavtseva hit a short-angled crosscourt forehand winner just inside the sideline. 0/15. Daniela hit a crosscourt forehand deep into the corner, forcing Kudryavtseva to hit a crosscourt forehand long and wide. 15/15. Second serve... Kudryavtseva’s forehand was called long but overruled as good, so they replayed the point. Deep first serve down the middle forced Kudryavtseva to net a backhand return. 30/15. Second serve... tentative rally... Kudryavtseva hit a big crosscourt forehand just inside the sideline, forcing Daniela to net a forehand. 30/30. Second serve: Kudryavtseva hit an off-backhand return wide, and threatened to throw her racket. 40/30 (SP #1 for Hantuchová). Daniela ran down a dropshot and hit a deep down-the-line forehand into the corner, forcing Kudryavtseva to hit a down-the-line backhand pass just wide. Hantuchová won the first set 6-4 at 11:54 BST (40m).

Daniela got her coach to come onto court and talk to her at the set-break [Photos 081 and 082]. According to her WTA biography (consulted on 24th October 2011), she is coached by Matej Lipták and also works with Darren Cahill. Judging by his grey hair and adidas tracksuit, I believe that the man in my photos is most likely to be Cahill, although a player can nominate anyone (who is eligible to receive coaching-credentials) as her coach for a specific WTA tournament.


Second set
----------
KUDRYAVTSE ____*@__ 2
HANTUCHOVÁ @*@*__@* 6

Kudryavtseva serving 0-0: Kudryavtseva netted a sliced backhand. 0/15. Daniela hit a deep forehand return down Kudryavtseva’s forehand sideline, forcing her to earth a forehand. 0/30. First serve out wide: forehand return long. 15/30. Daniela’s down-the-line forehand forced Kudryavtseva to net a backhand. 15/40 (BP #1). Kudryavtseva’s deep forehand down the line forced Daniela to hit a backhand lob wide. 30/40 (BP #2). Double fault #1 (second serve into the net). Broken.

Hantuchová serving 1-0: Second serve... Daniela hit a deep, low-bouncing forehand down the line, forcing Kudryavtseva to net a backhand. 15/0. Kudryavtseva hit a down-the-line backhand winner onto the baseline (it looked long to me). 15/15. Deep first serve forced Kudryavtseva to hit a forehand long. 30/15. Double fault #1 (second serve into the net). 30/30. Daniela hit a pinpoint crosscourt backhand winner onto the sideline. 40/30 (GP #1). Kudryavtseva on the fourth stroke hit a forehand long. Held.

Kudryavtseva serving 0-2: First serve out wide: Daniela hit a crosscourt forehand return-winner. 0/15. Daniela netted a forehand. 15/15. Daniela hit a forehand return very long. 30/15. Second serve... Kudryavtseva went for a forehand winner down the line, but it was just wide. 30/30. Deep first serve down the middle forced Daniela to mishit a backhand lob-return long and wide. 40/30 (GP #1). Daniela’s acute-angled crosscourt forehand forced Kudryavtseva to net a forehand. Deuce #1. Kudryavtseva went to the net behind a crosscourt forehand deep into the corner, but Daniela’s dipping crosscourt forehand forced Kudryavtseva to net a forehand volley. Ad Hantuchová (BP #1). Deep first serve forced Daniela to hit a backhand return long. Deuce #2. Daniela’s deep forehand return induced Kudryavtseva to dump a forehand halfway up the net. Ad Hantuchová (BP #2). Double fault #2 (second serve into the net). Broken.

Kudryavtseva got her coach to come onto court and talk to her at the changeover. Her WTA biography (consulted on 24th October 2011) says that she is currently without a coach, so I’ve no idea who he was, although I got a good photo of him [088].

Hantuchová serving 3-0: Forehand return long. 15/0. Kudryavtseva hit a deep crosscourt backhand into the corner, forcing Daniela to net a backhand. 15/15. Ace #2: first serve down the middle, just inside both the centre-line and the service-line. 30/15. First serve out wide (just inside the sideline) forced a floater, which Daniela dispatched with a high forehand drive-volley winner crosscourt. 40/15 (GP #1). Kudryavtseva’s depth forced Daniela to hit an off-backhand wide. 40/30 (GP #2). Deep first serve out wide, just inside the service-line, forced Kudryavtseva to net a backhand return. Held.

Kudryavtseva serving 0-4: Kudryavtseva went to the net and hit a backhand volley-winner down the line. 15/0. Kudryavtseva hit an off-forehand winner down the line: just inside the baseline. 30/0. Ace #2: first serve down the middle. Kudryavtseva said “c’mon”. 40/0 (GP #1). Kudryavtseva went to the net, but Daniela forced a floater and dispatched it with a crosscourt forehand drive-volley pass-winner. Kudryavtseva emitted a high-pitched squeak. 40/15 (GP #2). Second serve... Daniela forced a short ball, and dispatched it with a short-angled crosscourt forehand winner. 40/30 (GP #3). Deep first serve down the middle forced Daniela to earth a backhand return. Held.

Hantuchová serving 4-1: Ace #3: first serve down the middle. 15/0. Kudryavtseva hit a huge crosscourt forehand winner deep into the corner. 15/15. Daniela netted a backhand off a mildly awkward off-forehand from Kudryavtseva. 15/30. The groundstaff were called to their courts. Double fault #2 (second serve into the net). 15/40 (BP #1). First serve out wide, on the sideline, forced Kudryavtseva to net a forehand return. 30/40 (BP #2). Kudryavtseva’s forehand clipped the netcord and dropped dead for a winner. Broken.

The wind was rising. Daniela changed her racket.

Kudryavtseva serving 2-4 (new balls): Deep first serve down the middle forced Daniela to hit a forehand return long. 15/0. Second serve: Daniela hit a wild backhand return very long. 30/0. Daniela’s deep crosscourt forehand return forced Kudryavtseva to hit a forehand long. 30/15. Raindrops threatened the possibility of an imminent rain-delay. Daniela hit a low-bouncing crosscourt backhand return deep into the corner, forcing Kudryavtseva to earth a backhand. 30/30. Kudryavtseva hit a wild off-forehand long and wide. 30/40 (BP #1). Kudryavtseva dominated the rally with a forehand deep into the corner + forehand onto the baseline, but then hit a forehand long. Broken.

Hantuchová serving 5-2: Kudryavtseva hit a crosscourt forehand long and wide. 15/0. Kudryavtseva hit a short-angled off-forehand winner from her backhand-corner. 15/15. Kudryavtseva’s deep return forced Daniela to net a backhand. 15/30. Deep first serve out wide forced Kudryavtseva to net a backhand. 30/30. Daniela ran down a dropshot and hit an off-backhand dropshot-winner. 40/30 (MP #1 for Hantuchová). First serve out wide: backhand return long. Hantuchová won 6-4 6-2 at 12:27 BST (second set 32m, match 1h13m).

Daniela’s on-court interviewer asked her about the imminent rain as she heard the announcement at 1:0 *4-1 15/30. Unfortunately I couldn’t hear a word that she said, due to people moving and talking around me.

-----------------------------------------
3. Third-round mini-report: Rezaď v Riske (Thursday 9th June 2011)
-----------------------------------------

- ARAVANE REZAĎ [8,DF] lt. Alison Riske, 5-7 7-6 (8/6) 2-6

I would have liked to see more of this Court-1 match between the powerful groundstrokes of Rezaď and the ambitious all-court play of Riske, but I only managed to catch the end of the second set after watching Hantuchová v Kudryavtseva on Centre Court and before Lisicki v Paszek started on Court 2.

What I did see was some big serves and pinpoint groundstroke winners down the line from both girls. Rezaď saved a match-point in the second-set tiebreak, only to capitulate in the third.


Second set
----------
REZAĎ *_*_*_*_*_*_T 7
RISKE _*_*_*_*_*_*_ 6

6-6 tiebreak (all scores Rezaď/Riske):
{3/3*} Riske’s deep crosscourt forehand forced Rezaď to net a forehand.
{*3/4} Rezaď’s first serve out wide forced Riske to hit a crosscourt backhand return wide.
{*4/4} Rezaď hit another unreturnable first serve out wide.
{5/4*} Riske hit a pinpoint backhand winner down the line.
{5/5*} Riske’s deep first serve down the middle forced Rezaď to earth a backhand return.
{*5/6: MP #1 for Riske} Rezaď’s deep first serve down the middle forced Riske to net a forehand return.
{*6/6} Rezaď’s deep first serve forced Riske to hit a forehand return long.
{7/6*: SP #1 for Rezaď} Rezaď hit a pinpoint forehand winner down the line. Rezaď won the second set 7-6 at 12:44 BST.

--------------------------------------------------
4. Third-round eyewitness report: Lisicki v Paszek (Thursday 9th June 2011)
--------------------------------------------------

+ Sabine Lisicki [DF] d. Tamira Paszek, 7-6 (7/1) 6-4

I watched the first set before I had to turn my attention to Magdaléna Rybáriková v Arina Rodionova (an automatic decision, as I was already an Eternal Fan of Magda but not yet of Sabine at that time).

Sabine was down *1-3 and 3-4*, but once again fought back to take the set. Sabine has become pretty clever at constructing rallies with dropshots, though I sometimes felt that she was overdoing them to the point of becoming too predictable.

The match had a controversial ending, as a ball from Paszek at match-point was called long but overruled as good. Sabine claimed in a recent interview never to have thrown her racket, but she certainly dropped it as she argued about the call (Photo 203). So they had to replay the point, and Sabine won it anyway.


First set
---------
LISICK __*_*@_@*_*_T 7(7)
PASZEK @*_*__@__*_*_ 6(1)

The match was second on Court 2, and started at 12:43 BST.

Lisicki serving 0-0: Sabine netted a forehand smash. 0/15. Second serve... I missed this point – sorry. 15/15. Sabine went to the net, but Paszek hit a forehand pass-winner down the line. 15/30. Second serve... Sabine netted a forehand. 15/40 (BP #1). First serve out wide forced Paszek to hit a forehand return long. 30/40 (BP #2). Sabine netted a backhand. Broken.

Paszek serving 1-0: Second serve... Sabine netted a forehand. 15/0. Second serve: Sabine hit a crosscourt backhand return-winner. 15/15. Ace #1: first serve out wide (called wide but overruled as good). 30/15. Second serve: backhand return long. 40/15 (GP #1). Paszek’s deep forehand forced Sabine to hit a forehand long. Held.

Lisicki serving 0-2: Sabine’s high backhand drop-volley sat up nicely for Paszek to... hit a crosscourt forehand pass wide. 15/0. Sabine’s lob forced a weak ball from Paszek, which Sabine dispatched with an off-forehand winner. 30/0. Sabine netted a forehand. 30/15. Sabine painted the sideline with a crosscourt forehand winner. 40/15 (GP #1). Sabine hit an off-backhand wide. 40/30 (GP #2). Sabine hit a forehand dropshot to draw Paszek to the net; Sabine hit a crosscourt forehand pass-winner. Held.

Paszek serving 2-1: Sabine’s crosscourt backhand volley forced Paszek to net a backhand. 0/15. Sabine hit a dropshot... but Paszek ended up winning the rally with a crosscourt backhand winner. 15/15. Forehand return long. 30/15. Second serve... Sabine netted a forehand after an exchange of dropshots. 40/15 (GP #1). Deep second serve induced Sabine to net a forehand return. Held.

Lisicki serving 1-3: Sabine went to the net, but Paszek hit a backhand pass-winner down the line. 0/15. First serve out wide forced Paszek to hit a backhand return wide. 15/15. First serve down the middle forced Paszek to hit a backhand return long. 30/15. Sabine forehand just long. 30/30. Ace #1: first serve out wide. 40/30 (GP #1). Double fault #1. Deuce #1. Second serve out wide: Paszek mishit a crosscourt forehand return wide. Ad Lisicki (GP #1). Sabine, on the third stroke, hit a forehand dropshot-winner. Held.

Paszek serving 3-2: Sabine hit a pinpoint backhand winner down the line. 0/15. Sabine hit a crosscourt backhand winner. 0/30. Paszek went to the net, forcing Sabine to hit a forehand long. 15/30. Sabine hit a forehand long, and Paszek said “c’mon”. 30/30. Second serve: Sabine dumped a forehand return halfway up the net. 40/30 (GP #1). Second serve... Paszek netted a forehand smash. Deuce #1. Sabine hit a forehand dropshot-winner. Ad Lisicki (BP #1). Sabine’s off-forehand forced Paszek to net a backhand. Broken.

Lisicki serving 3-3: First serve forced Paszek to hit a forehand return long. 15/0. Second serve... Paszek hit a crosscourt forehand pass-winner. 15/15. Sabine’s depth forced Paszek to hit a forehand lob long. 30/15. Sabine hit a dropshot, but three strokes later, Paszek hit an off-forehand smash-winner. 30/30. Double fault #2 (second serve long). 30/40 (BP #1). Paszek’s deep crosscourt backhand forced Sabine to hit a backhand long. Paszek pumped her fist. Broken.

Paszek serving 4-3 (new balls): The scoreboard froze at 13:15 BST. The scoreboard resumed at 13:18 BST (3m). Paszek netted a sliced backhand. 0/15. Second serve... Paszek ran down a dropshot, but hit a forehand long. 0/30. Second serve: forehand return long. 15/30. Sabine hit an off-backhand dropshot-winner. 15/40 (BP #1). Second serve... Paszek went to the net, forcing Sabine to hit a forehand lob long. 30/40 (BP #1). Sabine netted a forehand return. Deuce #1. Sabine hit a crosscourt forehand dropshot + down-the-line forehand pass-volley winner. Ad Lisicki (BP #3). First serve out wide forced Sabine to net a backhand return. Deuce #2. Second serve... Paszek netted a backhand. Ad Lisicki (BP #4). Paszek ran down a dropshot, and hit a crosscourt forehand winner. Deuce #3. Paszek backhand long. Ad Lisicki (BP #5). Sabine hit an off-forehand return-winner. Broken.

Lisicki serving 4-4: Sabine hit a down-the-line forehand winner onto the baseline. 15/0. Sabine hit a short-angled off-forehand winner just inside the sideline. 30/0. Sabine hit a crosscourt forehand dropshot-winner. 40/0 (GP #1). Double fault #3 (second serve wide of the sideline). 40/15 (GP #2). Second serve... Paszek’s deep crosscourt forehand forced Sabine to net a forehand. 40/30 (GP #3). Deep first serve down the middle forced Paszek to net a backhand return. Held.

Paszek serving 4-5: Sabine hit a forehand long. 15/0. Sabine netted a forehand. 30/0. I missed this point – sorry. 40/0 (GP #1). Second serve... Paszek’s crosscourt forehand forced Sabine to hit a running forehand long. Held.

Lisicki serving 5-5: Paszek hit a forehand long. 15/0. Sabine’s dropshot induced Paszek to net a backhand. 30/0. Sabine hit a high forehand volley-winner crosscourt: just inside the sideline. 40/0 (GP #1). Paszek hit a deep forehand down the line, forcing Sabine to earth a backhand. 40/15 (GP #2). First serve: Paszek hit a forehand return-winner just inside the baseline. 40/30 (GP #3). Sabine hit an off-forehand winner. Held.

Paszek serving 5-6: Sabine hit a crosscourt forehand wide. 15/0. A netcord gave Sabine the initiative, and she hit a crosscourt forehand winner. 15/15. Paszek’s deep forehand forced Sabine to net a forehand. 30/15. First serve out wide forced Sabine to net a backhand. 40/15 (GP #1). Second serve... Sabine hit a crosscourt backhand wide. Held.

6-6 tiebreak (all scores Lisicki/Paszek):
{*0/0} Sabine forced a short ball, and dispatched it with a short-angled off-forehand winner onto the sideline.
{1/0*} Sabine’s deep crosscourt forehand forced Paszek to net a forehand.
{2/0*} Paszek hit a down-the-line backhand just wide.
{*3/0} Paszek hit a crosscourt forehand just wide.
{*4/0} Sabine hit a crosscourt forehand deep into the corner, inducing Paszek to net a forehand.
{*5/0} Paszek netted a backhand.
{6/0*: SP #1 for Lisicki} Paszek’s deep crosscourt backhand forced Sabine to net a backhand.
{*6/1: SP #2 for Lisicki} First serve out wide + crosscourt backhand dropshot-winner. Lisicki won the first set 7-6 (7/1) at 13:44 BST (1h01m).

And then I had to switch my attention to Magdaléna Rybáriková, who was just about to start her match on the adjacent Court 1. I was able to keep an eye on this match, but not write down a description of each point for this match as well as Magda’s.

I apologise for any offence that I may cause by having chosen Magda over Sabine. Had I already inducted Sabine into my Eternal Fanship by that time, I would have stuck with her match until the end.


Second set
----------
LISICK @*__@*_*_* 6
PASZEK __*@__*_*_ 4

Paszek serving 0-0: 0/15. Double fault #1. 0/30. 15/30. 15/40 (BP #1). Second serve... Broken.

Lisicki serving 1-0: 15/0. 30/0. 30/15. 30/30. 40/30 (GP #1). Held.

Paszek serving 0-2: 15/0. 15/15. 30/15. 40/15 (GP #1). Held.

Lisicki serving 2-1 (new balls): The scoreboard froze at 13:58 BST. The scoreboard resumed at 14:01 BST (3m). 0/15. 0/30. 0/40 (BP #1). 15/40 (BP #2). Double fault #5. Broken.

Paszek serving 2-2: 0/15. 0/30. 15/30. 15/40 (BP #1). Broken.

Lisicki serving 3-2: 15/0. 15/15. 30/30. 30/40 (BP #1). Deuce #1. Ad Lisicki (GP #1). Held.

Paszek serving 2-4: Second serve... 15/0. 30/0. 30/15. Double fault #2. 30/30. 40/30 (GP #1). Held.

Lisicki serving 4-3: Ace #2. 15/0. 30/0. 30/15. 40/15 (GP #1). Held.

Paszek serving 3-5: 15/0. 30/0. 40/0 (GP #1). Held.

Lisicki serving 5-4: 15/0. 30/0. 40/0 (MP #1 for Lisicki). Second serve... Lisicki won 7-6 (7/1) 6-4 at 14:24 BST (second set 40m, match 1h41m).

-----------------------------------------------------------
5. Third-round eyewitness report: Rybáriková v Ar.Rodionova (Thursday 9th June 2011)
-----------------------------------------------------------

+ MAGDALÉNA RYBÁRIKOVÁ [14,EF] d. Arina Rodionova, 6-7 (1/7) 6-0 6-1

Arina Rodionova is the younger sister of Anastasia, but remains Russian after Australia rejected her application for citizenship on the grounds that she wasn’t talented enough. Australia might want to reconsider that decision, as Arina knocked out top seed Kaia Kanepi in the previous round, and put up a good performance against Magda here.

Magda played very poorly (by her standards) in the first set, as she allowed herself to be distracted by shoals of noisy schoolchildren running about on the terrace overlooking Court 1, and had to endure a long delay before her service-game at *5-6 as a few raindrops threatened to suspend play, but the players had to wait on the court while the officials waited for the cloud to pass and then checked that the court had not become too slippery.

There were no breaks in the first set, but Magda played a terrible tiebreak to go a set down (though I have to give Rodionova credit: she did hit some great shots in that tiebreak).

Stung into action by the loss of the first set, Magda transformed into the brilliant player who had thrashed Coco Vandeweghe in the second round, hitting a series of wonderful volleys, including one below the height of the net at 1:1 4-1* 30/30. Rodionova hurt her knee on that point, but overall, it was all about Magda.


First set
---------
RODIONOVA *_*_*_*_*_*_T 7
RYBÁRIKOV _*_*_*_*_*_*_ 6

The match was second on Court 1. Magda won the toss and elected to receive, and the match started at 13:53 BST.

Rodionova serving 0-0: Rodionova’s off-forehand approach forced Magda to net a backhand. 15/0. Second serve: backhand return long. 30/0. First serve out wide: Magda netted a forehand return. 40/0 (GP #1). First serve out wide: backhand return long. Held.

Magda complained about the noisy schoolchildren running about on the terrace overlooking Court 1, but the umpire said: “That’s always the way.”

Rybáriková serving 0-1: Second serve... Rodionova went to the net and hit an off-forehand volley that forced Magda to net a backhand. 0/15. Ace #1: first serve down the middle. 15/15. Crosscourt forehand return just wide. 30/15. Second serve... Magda on the third stroke sprayed a wild forehand long. 30/30. Second serve: a mildly awkward forehand return down the middle induced Magda to net a forehand. 30/40 (BP #1). Magda saved it with a short-angled crosscourt forehand pass-winner. Deuce #1. Magda went to the net and hit a delectable crosscourt forehand drop-volley winner. Ad Rybáriková (GP #1). Magda went to the net and hit an off-forehand drop-volley that forced Rodionova to hit a backhand long. Held.

Rodionova serving 1-1: Magda ran around her backhand to hit an off-forehand, and Rodionova punished her with a crosscourt forehand pass-winner. 15/0. First serve out wide: backhand return long. 30/0. Magda netted a cheap forehand return. 40/0 (GP #1). Wild backhand return very long. Held.

More schoolchildren arrived at 30/30 in the next game.

Rybáriková serving 1-2: Ace #2: first serve down the middle. 15/0. Magda hit a forehand long on the third stroke. 15/15. Rodionova’s high-bouncing return induced Magda to net a forehand. 15/30. Virtual ace down the middle. 30/30. First serve out wide: Rodionova’s dipping crosscourt forehand return forced Magda to earth a forehand. 30/40 (BP #1). Rodionova went for a crosscourt forehand winner, but it was just wide. Deuce #1. Rodionova hit an off-forehand winner just inside the sideline. Ad Rodionova (BP #2). Magda went to the net, forcing Rodionova to hit a crosscourt forehand wide. Deuce #2. With both players at the net, Rodionova hit a crosscourt forehand pass-volley winner. Ad Rodionova (BP #3). First serve out wide forced Rodionova to hit a down-the-line backhand return wide. Deuce #3. Rodionova hit a down-the-line forehand pass-winner back behind Magda. Ad Rodionova (BP #4). Backhand return long. Magda emitted an angry-sounding yell. Deuce #4. Rodionova’s deep off-forehand forced Magda to hit a backhand long. Ad Rodionova (BP #5). Ace #3: first serve out wide. Deuce #5. Deep first serve: backhand return just long. Ad Rybáriková (GP #1). Magda netted a high forehand volley, and muttered. Deuce #6. First serve out wide + deep off-forehand forced Rodionova to net a backhand. Ad Rybáriková (GP #2). Ace #4: first serve down the middle. Held.

Rodionova serving 2-2: Magda ran down a lob, and hit a down-the-line forehand that forced Rodionova to hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 0/15. Rodionova went to the net, and hit a crosscourt backhand volley-winner as Magda slipped over. 15/15. Rodionova hit a short-angled off-forehand wide. 15/30. Magda hit a crosscourt backhand deep into the corner, forcing Rodionova to net a backhand. 15/40 (BP #1). Rodionova went to the net, forcing Magda to net a makeable crosscourt backhand. 30/40 (BP #2). First serve out wide: Magda netted a backhand return. Deuce #1. Rodionova hit an off-forehand winner back behind Magda. Ad Rodionova (GP #1). Deep first serve down the middle forced Magda to hit an off-forehand return wide. Held.

Rybáriková serving 2-3: First serve out wide + pinpoint forehand winner down the line. 15/0. Rodionova ran down a dropshot but netted a backhand. 30/0. Deep first serve: backhand return long. 40/0 (GP #1). Second serve: Rodionova hit a makeable backhand return long. Held.

Rodionova serving 3-3: Body-jamming first serve induced Magda to net a backhand return. 15/0. Magda netted a sliced backhand. 30/0. Magda hit a pinpoint forehand pass-winner down the line. 30/15. Magda’s deep crosscourt backhand return forced Rodionova to hit a forehand long. 30/30. Magda went to the net, but netted a backhand volley off an awkward pass. 40/30 (GP #1). Second serve... Magda hit a forehand just long, and Rodionova celebrated with a shout of “Yes!” Held.

Rybáriková serving 3-4 (new balls): First serve out wide forced Rodionova to hit a down-the-line forehand return wide. 15/0. Magda went for a crosscourt forehand winner, but it was just wide. 15/15. Rodionova hit a crosscourt forehand onto the sideline, forcing Magda to net a forehand. 15/30. The first raindrops appeared. Rodionova went to the net and hit a low-bouncing volley, but Magda hit a pinpoint forehand pass-winner down the line. 30/30. Rodionova dumped a forehand into the net, and yelled. 40/30 (GP #1). Second serve... Rodionova hit a forehand approach just long, and smacked the ball into the net in anger. Held.

Rodionova serving 4-4: First serve out wide + forehand winner down the line. 15/0. Second serve... Magda’s deep sliced backhand forced Rodionova to net a forehand. 15/15. Magda hit a crosscourt forehand wide, and muttered. 30/15. More raindrops. Magda’s deep sliced backhand approach forced Rodionova to net a forehand. 30/30. Rodionova’s crosscourt forehand forced Magda to hit a down-the-line forehand wide. 40/30 (GP #1). First serve out wide + off-forehand winner. Held.

Magda got her coach Martin Hromec to come onto court and talk to her at the changeover.

Rybáriková serving 4-5: Second serve... Magda netted a backhand. 0/15. Magda went to the net, forcing Rodionova to hit a crosscourt forehand pass just wide. 15/15. More raindrops. Magda went to the net, and hit a crosscourt backhand volley-winner deep into the corner. 30/15. First serve out wide: backhand return long. The rain was getting heavier. 40/15 (GP #1). First serve out wide + off-forehand winner – Rodionova didn’t run for it. Held.

Rodionova serving 5-5: First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand winner back behind Magda. 15/0. Rodionova hit an off-forehand volley-winner. 30/0. Rodionova hit a deep backhand down the line, forcing Magda to net a forehand. 40/0 (GP #1). First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand deep into the corner forced Magda to net a forehand. Held.

The rain was easing off. The umpire checked the court, and there was a 13-minute delay (14:37 to 14:51 BST) while they waited on court for the cloud to pass without officially suspending play.

Rybáriková serving 5-6: First serve: Rodionova netted a backhand return. 15/0. Magda on the third stroke hit a backhand long, and muttered. 15/15. Second serve... Rodionova’s deep off-forehand induced Magda to net a sliced backhand. 15/30. First serve out wide: down-the-line backhand return just wide. 30/30. Second serve... Magda opened up the court with an off-forehand, and hit a crosscourt forehand winner into the gap. 40/30 (GP #1). Second serve... Rodionova painted the sideline with an off-forehand winner. Deuce #1. Rodionova hit a deep crosscourt forehand into the corner, forcing Magda to net a forehand – and she stumbled as she did so. Ad Rodionova (BP #1). First serve down the middle: Rodionova’s forehand return flew backwards. Magda said “Pôme”, which is a Slovak equivalent of “C’mon”. Deuce #2. Rodionova netted a forehand on the fourth stroke. Ad Rybáriková (GP #2). First serve out wide: crosscourt backhand return just long (called by the umpire). Held.

6-6 tiebreak (all scores Rodionova/Rybáriková):
{*0/0} Rodionova hit a crosscourt backhand deep into the corner, forcing Magda to net a backhand.
{1/0*} Rodionova hit a deep crosscourt backhand return just inside the baseline, forcing Magda to net a backhand.
{2/0*} Rodionova’s low-bouncing return induced Magda to net a backhand.
{*3/0} Magda hit a wild forehand wide and very long.
{*4/0} Rodionova hit a pinpoint off-backhand winner just inside the sideline.
{5/0*} Second serve out wide + crosscourt forehand winner.
{5/1*} Rodionova ran down a dropshot and hit a crosscourt backhand winner, and yelled.
{*6/1: SP #1 for Rodionova} Rodionova went to the net and hit a crosscourt forehand volley-winner. Rodionova won the first set 7-6 at 15:01 BST (1h08m).


Second set
----------
RODIONOVA ______ 0
RYBÁRIKOV *@*@*@ 6

Rybáriková serving 0-0: Magda netted a backhand dropshot on the third stroke. 0/15. Rodionova hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 15/15. Forehand return just long. 30/15. Rodionova’s down-the-line backhand return forced Magda to hit a forehand long. 30/30. My notes say that Magda hit an off-forehand just wide on the third stroke, but that can’t be right, because it contradicts the next score. 40/30 (GP #1). Magda netted a forehand on the third stroke, and shouted. Deuce #1. Rodionova netted a backhand volley. Ad Rybáriková (GP #2). Magda went to the net; Rodionova’s crosscourt forehand pass forced Magda to stretch wide, but she picked off a beautiful forehand volley-winner down the line. Held.

Rodionova serving 0-1: Deep first serve down the middle forced Magda to hit a backhand lob-return just long. 15/0. Second serve... Magda forced a short lob, and dispatched it with a crosscourt forehand smash-winner. 15/15. Rodionova went to the net; Magda went for an off-backhand pass-winner, but it was just long. 30/15. Magda’s deep, low-bouncing return induced Rodionova to net a backhand. 30/30. Rodionova hit a forehand just long. 30/40 (BP #1). Magda hit a deep ball just inside the baseline, inducing Rodionova to net a forehand. Rodionova whacked a ball into the back fence in frustration. Broken.

Rybáriková serving 2-0: Second serve... Rodionova hit a crosscourt forehand just inside the sideline, forcing Magda to hit a crosscourt forehand wide. Magda groaned. 0/15. Second serve out wide: Rodionova hit an off-forehand return-winner. 0/30. A meaty rally ended with Rodionova hitting a backhand dropshot-winner. 0/40 (BP #1). Ace #5: first serve down the middle. 15/40 (BP #2). Rodionova dumped a forehand halfway up the net. 30/40 (BP #3). Magda went to the net, forcing Rodionova to hit a crosscourt forehand wide. Deuce #1. Second serve... Magda went to the net, forcing Rodionova to net a forehand. Rodionova muttered at length in Russian. Ad Rybáriková (GP #1). Magda hit a crosscourt forehand winner onto the baseline. Held.

Rodionova serving 0-3 (new balls): First serve out wide: down-the-line forehand return wide. 15/0. Body-jamming first serve: Magda netted a forehand return. 30/0. Rodionova netted a backhand on the third stroke. 30/15. Second serve... Rodionova hit an off-forehand winner. 40/15 (GP #1). Magda’s forehand return was called long but overruled as good, so they had to replay the point. Magda muttered, then hit a deep crosscourt forehand return, forcing Rodionova to net a forehand. 40/30 (GP #2). Rodionova went to the net, but Magda painted the sideline with a pinpoint crosscourt forehand winner. Deuce #1. Magda hit a crosscourt forehand return + down-the-line forehand winner. Ad Rybáriková (BP #1). Magda hit a crosscourt forehand winner that clipped the outside edge of the sideline. Broken.

Rybáriková serving 4-0: Magda went to the net, forcing Rodionova to net a forehand. 15/0. Magda, on the third stroke, hit a sliced backhand winner down the line. 30/0. First serve out wide – on the sideline and on the service-line – forced Rodionova to hit a forehand return wide. 40/0 (GP #1). Rodionova went to the net, but hit a forehand long. Held.

Rodionova serving 0-5: Rodionova hit a forehand long. 0/15. Magda hit a crosscourt backhand drop-volley winner. 0/30. Rodionova went to the net behind a crosscourt forehand, and hit an off-forehand volley-winner. 15/30. Rodionova tried to serve and volley, but Magda hit a crosscourt backhand return-winner. 15/40 (SP #1 for Rybáriková). Rodionova went to the net, forcing Magda to hit a down-the-line backhand pass wide. 30/40 (SP #2 for Rybáriková). Rodionova on the third stroke hit a backhand just long. Rybáriková won the second set 6-0 at 15:26 BST (second set 24m, match so far 1h32m).


Third set
---------
RODIONOVA _*_____ 1
RYBÁRIKOV *_*@*@* 6

Magda hit some practice-serves while Rodionova took a 7-minute bathroom-break (from 15:26 to 15:33 BST).

Rybáriková serving 0-0: Magda hit a sliced backhand long. 0/15. Magda forced a short ball, but hit a wild forehand long. 0/30. Magda forced a floater, let it bounce, and hit an off-forehand smash-winner. 15/30. Magda netted a backhand dropshot. 15/40 (BP #1). Magda went to the net and hit a forehand drop-volley winner. 30/40 (BP #2). Rodionova hit a crosscourt backhand wide. Deuce #1. Deep first serve down the middle forced Rodionova to hit an off-backhand return wide. Ad Rybáriková (GP #1). Rodionova hit a short-angled off-forehand return just wide. Held.

Rodionova serving 0-1: Magda hit a crosscourt forehand deep into the corner, forcing Rodionova to net a forehand. 0/15. First serve out wide (on the sideline) forced a short lob-return, which Magda dispatched with a high forehand winner crosscourt. 15/15. Magda hit a crosscourt forehand wide. 30/15. Rodionova’s deep crosscourt backhand forced Magda to net a sliced backhand. 40/15 (GP #1). Service-winner. Held.

Rybáriková serving 1-1: Magda went to the net, and hit a down-the-line backhand drop-volley winner. 15/0. Magda forced a short ball, but netted an easy forehand. 15/15. Rodionova went to the net, but Magda hit a crosscourt forehand pass-winner. 30/15. Ace #6 (I have this down as a service-winner, but officially it was an ace). 40/15 (GP #1). Magda went to the net and hit a forehand drop-volley winner with wicked sidespin to the right. Held.

Rodionova serving 1-2: Rodionova’s deep forehand forced Magda to hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 15/0. Magda forehand long. 30/0. Rodionova netted a forehand on the third stroke. 30/15. Magda went to the net; Rodionova went to the net herself behind a short-angled crosscourt forehand, but Magda picked it off with a forehand pass-volley winner down the line. 30/30. Magda hit a sliced backhand just long, and groaned. 40/30 (GP #1). Magda went to the net, and hit a sliced backhand volley that forced Rodionova to net a forehand. Deuce #1. Rodionova hit a down-the-line forehand long. Ad Rybáriková (BP #1). Second serve... Magda hit a down-the-line sliced backhand winner that skimmed over the grass like a stone over water. Broken.

Rybáriková serving 3-1: Virtual ace down the middle forced Rodionova to earth a backhand return. 15/0. Ace #7: first serve out wide, just inside the sideline. 30/0. Magda hit an off-forehand smash-winner. 40/0 (GP #1). Deep first serve down the middle forced Rodionova to net a forehand return. Held.

Rodionova serving 1-4: First serve out wide forced Magda to net a forehand return. 15/0. Second serve: Magda dumped a forehand return into the net. 30/0. Magda hit a deep crosscourt forehand just inside the baseline, forcing Rodionova to net a forehand. 30/15. Second serve was called long but overruled as good, so Rodionova got to replay the point with another first serve. She netted a backhand. 30/30. Magda went to the net and hit a forehand volley from below the height of the net, followed by an off-backhand volley-winner. Rodionova hurt her knee. 30/40 (BP #1). Rodionova netted a forehand. Broken.

Rybáriková serving 5-1 (new balls): First serve out wide + off-forehand winner. 15/0. First serve out wide forced Rodionova to net a backhand return. 30/0. First serve out wide forced Rodionova to hit a crosscourt backhand return wide. 40/0 (MP #1 for Rybáriková). Rodionova netted a forehand. Rybáriková won 6-7 6-0 6-1 at 15:59 BST (third set 33m, match 2h05m).

------------------------------------------------------------------------------
6. First-round doubles eyewitness report: Rybáriková/Kanepi v Cîrstea/Eraković (Thursday 9th June 2011)
------------------------------------------------------------------------------

- Magdaléna Rybáriková [EF]/Kaia Kanepi lt. Sorana Cîrstea/Marina Eraković, 7-5 3-6 [9/11]

This was my first time to see Magda play doubles. She seemed happy and relaxed most of the time, although she did react to errors on two occasions by throwing her racket up in the air!

Magda and Kanepi made a bad start to go 0:0 *0-3 (15/30) down, but Magda brought her volleying-skills to the doubles-court to fight back to 3-3*, and took advantage of a poor couple of games at the end of the first set by Cîrstea/Eraković to take it 7-5.

The second set went with serve until *3-4, when Cîrstea/Eraković snuck a break of Magda’s serve for *5-3, and Cîrstea served out the first set 15 with the help of a winning smash and forehand volley from Eraković, whose prowess at the net complements Cîrstea’s power-game beautifully.

At 1:1, to the confusion of many of the spectators around me, the match was decided by a match-tiebreak (to 10 points rather than 7). Magda and Kanepi looked well on their way to victory at 6/0*, but Cîrstea/Eraković closed to 5/6*, so Magda and Kanepi had to settle for much narrower leads of 8/5* (courtesy of an ace by Magda) and two match-points at *9/7. But Eraković saved the first with a forehand winner down the line, and three consecutive Magda errors gave Cîrstea and Eraković a most improbable victory.


First set
---------
KANEPI/RYBÁRI ___*@*_*_*@* 7
CÎRSTE/ERAKOV *@*___*_*___ 5

The match was originally scheduled fourth on Court 1, but became the fifth match on Centre Court when Ana Ivanović and Tamira Paszek pulled out. The match started at 17:31 BST.

Kanepi was receiving serve in the ad-court.

Cîrstea serving 0-0: Cîrstea hit a forehand very long. 0/15. Kanepi netted a low backhand at the net. 15/15. Cîrstea hit a forehand winner down the middle. 30/15. Magda’s crosscourt backhand volley forced Cîrstea to hit a backhand long. 30/30. Ace #1: second serve out wide. 40/30 (GP #1). Kanepi hit a pinpoint down-the-line backhand winner. 40/40 (BP #1). Deciding point: receiver’s choice. Second serve: Kanepi dumped a forehand return halfway up the net. Held.

Cîrstea was receiving serve in the ad-court.

Kanepi serving 0-1: Magda, on the third stroke, hit a forehand smash-winner. 15/0. Kanepi backhand just long. 15/15. Eraković hit a crosscourt backhand return-winner past Magda at the net. 15/30. Eraković hit a crosscourt forehand volley-winner. 15/40 (BP #1). First serve out wide: Eraković netted a forehand return. 30/40 (BP #2). Magda hit a backhand volley long – off a body-jamming pass that jarred her left hand. Broken.

Eraković serving 2-0: Second serve... Cîrstea hit an off-forehand volley-winner. 15/0. Kanepi hit a backhand lob-winner just inside the baseline. 15/15. Second serve... Magda sprayed a forehand return very long. 30/15. Eraković let a floater bounce, and dispatched it with a delicate crosscourt forehand drop-volley winner. 40/15 (GP #1). Magda hit a forehand return very long, threw her racket up in the air and caught it. Held.

Rybáriková serving 0-3: Magda netted a forehand. 0/15. Magda ran down a dropshot, and dispatched it with a short-angled crosscourt backhand winner. 15/15. Magda netted a forehand, and muttered. 15/30. Eraković netted a forehand volley. 30/30. Magda hit a first serve out wide, followed by a forehand winner down the line. 40/30 (GP #1). Magda served and volleyed: first serve out wide + down-the-line backhand volley-winner. Held.

Cîrstea serving 3-1: First serve: Magda netted a backhand return. 15/0. Kanepi forehand just long. 30/0. Cîrstea, driven wide, netted a forehand. 30/15. Second serve... Magda intercepted at the net to hit a backhand volley-winner down the middle. 30/30. Cîrstea forehand long. 30/40 (BP #1). Kanepi netted a forehand return. 40/40 (BP #2). Kanepi hit a crosscourt backhand dropshot-winner. Broken.

Kanepi serving 2-3: Cîrstea intercepted to hit a forehand volley very long. 15/0. Magda hit a forehand volley down the line, forcing Cîrstea to net a backhand. 30/0. Eraković bisected Magda and Kanepi with a crosscourt forehand volley-winner. 30/15. Eraković netted a forehand. 40/15 (GP #1). I missed this point – sorry. Held.

Eraković serving 3-3: First serve out wide forced Magda to net a backhand return. 15/0. Magda hit a forehand volley down the line, forcing Eraković to net a backhand volley. 15/15. Magda hit a short-angled crosscourt forehand pass-winner. 15/30. Cîrstea hit a crosscourt backhand volley-winner. 30/30. Magda netted a backhand. 40/30 (GP #1). Kanepi forehand return long. Held.

Rybáriková serving 3-4 (new balls): Cîrstea forced a floater, and dispatched it with a forehand smash-winner. 0/15. Virtual ace down the middle. 15/15. Magda’s deep backhand volley forced Cîrstea to hit a forehand wide. 30/15. Deep first serve forced Cîrstea to net a forehand return. 40/15 (GP #1). Ace #1: first serve down the middle. Held.

Cîrstea serving 4-4: Eraković hit a forehand smash-winner. 15/0. Kanepi netted a forehand return. 30/0. Cîrstea hit a crosscourt forehand wide. 30/15. Ace #2: first serve out wide. 40/15 (GP #1). Eraković hit a forehand volley-winner. Held.

Kanepi serving 4-5: Eraković hit a backhand return long. 15/0. Cîrstea netted a forehand return. 30/0. Kanepi netted a forehand. 30/15. Kanepi hit a crosscourt backhand low over the net, forcing Cîrstea to net a forehand volley. 40/15 (GP #1). Magda hit a high forehand volley long. 40/30 (GP #2). I missed this point – sorry. Held.

Eraković serving 5-5: Eraković hit a forehand pass-winner that clipped the netcord and jumped over Kanepi’s racket. 15/0. Cîrstea forehand just long. 15/15. Double fault #1 (second serve long). 15/30. Second serve... Cîrstea hit a backhand volley long. 15/40 (BP #1). Eraković netted a forehand volley. Broken.

Rybáriková serving 6-5: Eraković dumped a horrendous backhand return halfway up the net. 15/0. Eraković’s crosscourt forehand volley induced Kanepi to net a forehand volley. 15/15. Kanepi’s forehand smash forced Eraković to net a forehand. 30/15. Kanepi hit a high forehand crosscourt volley-winner. 40/15 (SP #1 for Kanepi/Rybáriková). Body-jamming first serve out wide forced Eraković to net a backhand. Kanepi/Rybáriková won the first set 7-5 at 18:11 BST (40m).


Second set
----------
KANEPI/RYBÁRI _*_*_*___ 3
CÎRSTE/ERAKOV *_*_*_*@* 6

Magda took a 3-minute bathroom-break from 18:11 to 18:15 BST, while Cîrstea and Eraković got their coach to come onto court and talk to them at the set-break.

Cîrstea serving 0-0: Eraković hit a crosscourt backhand volley-winner. 15/0. Kanepi netted a backhand return. 30/0. Double fault #2 (second serve into the net). 30/15. Magda’s crosscourt forehand was going wide, but Eraković hit an off-forehand volley wide. 30/30. Eraković hit a crosscourt forehand drop-volley winner. 40/30 (GP #1). Eraković hit a crosscourt forehand volley-winner just inside the sideline. Held.

Kanepi serving 0-1: Eraković forehand long. 15/0. Magda netted a forehand, threw her racket up as high as possible, and failed to catch it. 15/15. Magda hit a backhand volley at Cîrstea’s feet, forcing her to earth a half-volley backhand. 30/15. Service-winner. 40/15 (GP #1). Kanepi forehand long. 40/30 (GP #2). Kanepi’s forehand pass clipped Eraković’s racket, making it technically Eraković’s error. Held.

Eraković serving 1-1: Magda hit a short-angled crosscourt forehand return-winner. 0/15. Cîrstea hit a forehand drop-volley winner. 15/15. Magda netted a forehand. 30/15. Kanepi netted a backhand. 40/15 (GP #1). Cîrstea hit an off-forehand volley-winner. Held.

It was getting dark, with a threat of rain.

Rybáriková serving 1-2: Eraković hit a forehand smash-winner. 0/15. Magda’s off-forehand volley forced Cîrstea to hit a backhand long. 15/15. Eraković earthed a forehand drop-volley, and emitted a high-pitched “ah”. 30/15. Eraković hit a high off-forehand volley, forcing Magda to hit a backhand long. 30/30. Magda appeared to serve an ace out wide onto the sideline, but the umpire called it wide. Second serve... Magda hit an off-backhand volley-winner. 40/30 (GP #1). Kanepi earthed a backhand volley. 40/40 (BP #1). Deciding point: receiver’s choice. First serve down the middle forced Cîrstea to net a forehand return. Held.

Cîrstea serving 2-2 (new balls): Cîrstea hit a backhand volley long. 0/15. Cîrstea hit a down-the-line backhand pass-winner. 15/15. Eraković hit a forehand smash-winner that landed in Stand D. 30/15. Eraković’s crosscourt forehand volley forced Magda to hit a crosscourt forehand wide. 40/15 (GP #1). Magda netted a forehand return. Held.

Kanepi serving 2-3: Eraković hit an off-forehand smash-winner onto the sideline. 0/15. Second serve... Cîrstea netted a wild forehand return. 15/15. Kanepi hit a crosscourt forehand smash-winner. 30/15. Magda hit a backhand dropshot-winner. 40/15 (GP #1). Magda mishit a volley that turned into a floater, which Cîrstea dispatched with a crosscourt forehand smash-winner. 40/30 (GP #2). First serve out wide forced Cîrstea to net a backhand return. Held.

Eraković serving 3-3: Kanepi mishit a forehand volley long. 15/0. Magda hit a backhand drop-volley winner. 15/15. Ace #3: first serve out wide. 30/15. Eraković hit a crosscourt backhand half-volley just wide. 30/30. Magda hit an off-backhand just wide (called by the umpire). 40/30 (GP #1). First serve down the middle forced Kanepi to net a forehand return. Held.

Rybáriková serving 3-4: Ace #2: first serve out wide. 15/0. Magda on the third stroke hit an off-forehand volley wide. 15/15. Eraković forehand lob long. 30/15. Kanepi backhand volley long. 30/30. Eraković hit a forehand very long, and said: “Hit it!” 40/30 (GP #1). Cîrstea’s low-bouncing crosscourt backhand return forced Magda to earth a backhand. 40/40 (BP #1). Kanepi on the third stroke hit a backhand volley long. Broken.

Cîrstea serving 5-3: Body-jamming first serve forced Magda to net a backhand return. 15/0. Deep first serve down the middle: Kanepi hit a crosscourt forehand return-winner. 15/15. Eraković hit another forehand smash-winner into Stand D. 30/15. Eraković hit a crosscourt forehand volley-winner. 40/15 (SP #1 for Cîrstea/Eraković). Magda hit a backhand long. Cîrstea/Eraković won the second set 6-3 at 18:44 BST (second set 33m, match so far 1h13m).


Third set
---------

Match-tiebreak:
{Kanepi serving 0/0} Eraković hit a forehand long.
{Eraković serving 0/1} Second serve... Magda hit a crosscourt forehand volley-winner.
{Eraković serving 0/2} Magda hit a pinpoint forehand winner down the line.
{Rybáriková serving 3/0} Kick second serve forced Cîrstea to hit a backhand return long.
{Rybáriková serving 4/0} Deep first serve on the service-line forced Eraković to net a forehand return.
{Cîrstea serving 0/5} A great rally ended with Kanepi hitting an off-forehand volley-winner.
{Cîrstea serving 0/6} Magda dumped an off-backhand return into the net.
{Kanepi serving 6/1} Magda hit a backhand volley just long.
{Kanepi serving 6/2} Kanepi hit a backhand long.
{Eraković serving 3/6} Cîrstea hit a backhand volley at Magda’s feet, forcing her to net a forehand.
{Eraković serving 4/6} Eraković’s deep crosscourt forehand forced Magda to net a forehand.
{Rybáriková serving 6/5} I’m having trouble reading my own notes for this point, which clearly say that Cîrstea hit a backhand pass-winner down the line, but then appear to say “and fell back on back” (the last word is only semi-legible). I’m not sure whether this means that Cîrstea’s pass clipped the netcord and fell back on her side, or whether she lost the point in some other way and fell back on her back.
{Rybáriková serving 7/5} Ace #3: first serve out wide, just inside the sideline.
{Cîrstea serving 5/8} Virtual ace out wide.
{Cîrstea serving 6/8} Body-jamming first serve forced Magda to earth a backhand return.
{Kanepi serving 8/7} Magda’s forehand drop-volley forced Cîrstea to net a backhand.
{Kanepi serving 9/7: MP #1 for Kanepi/Rybáriková} Eraković hit a down-the-line forehand winner onto the baseline.
{Eraković serving 8/9: MP #2 for Kanepi/Rybáriková} Cîrstea’s forehand smash forced Magda to earth a forehand lob.
{Eraković serving 9/9} First serve forced Magda to hit a forehand return long.
{Rybáriková serving 9/10: MP #1 for Cîrstea/Eraković} Magda tried to serve and volley, but hit a backhand volley long on the third stroke. Cîrstea/Eraković won 5-7 6-3 [11/9] at 18:57 BST (third set 13m, match 1h26m).

--
Dr. Andrew Broad

andrewbroad
Dec 12th, 2011, 10:04 PM
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AEGON CLASSIC (Edgbaston, Birmingham, England; grass; WTA International)
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Contents
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1. Photos
2. Quarter-final eyewitness report: Hantuchová v Riske
3. Quarter-final eyewitness report: Ivanović v Lučić
4. Quarter-final eyewitness report: Rybáriková v Lisicki

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1. Photos (Friday 10th June 2011)
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Permission to copy my Birmingham photos is granted provided that:
(a) no money is exchanged;
(b) they are labelled as “Copyright Andrew Broad 2011”.
Please let me know if you do use them on another website.

Since I don’t have time to upload hundreds of photos a day individually, I have uploaded each batch of photos as a large zip-file (approximately as many megabytes as photos).

Should my Divshare download-limit be exceeded, it will be reset on 16th December 2011.

Friday’s photos are in four volumes.


Friday Part 1 (Photos 001 to 174)
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http://www.divshare.com/download/16363681-67d

Daniela Hantuchová (63 photos)
Ana Ivanović (58)
Alison Riske (36)
Mirjana Lučić (34)

Part 1 features the Hantuchová v Riske (Photos 001–089) and Ivanović v Lučić (Photos 090–174) quarter-finals.

Photo 086 is extraordinary: Daniela ran out from the 0:0 *4-1 changeover just as Riske’s sister Sarah McGlannery ran off court after an on-court coaching session. False perspective makes it look as though they almost bumped into each other, but their feet say otherwise.


Friday Part 2 (Photos 175 to 253)
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http://www.divshare.com/download/16363857-6ff

Péng,Shuŕi (29 photos)
Marina Eraković (25)
Ana Ivanović (17)
Jocelyn Rae (7)
Ayumi Morita (5)

Part 2 features the Péng v Eraković quarter-final (Photos 209–253). Photo 224 shows Péng being attacked by a bee.

Before I joined that match, I got some interesting off-court photos when I came off Centre Court for my lunch-break:
• some close-ups of Péng and Eraković as they went onto Centre Court for their quarter-final (Photos 175–179);
• Morita buying a crępe (Photos 180–184);
• Ivanović doing an autograph-session (Photos 185–201).
• Jocelyn Rae: a tall, blonde beauty, who won a gold medal for Scotland in mixed doubles at the 2010 Commonwealth Games (Photos 202–208).


Friday Part 3 (Photos 254 to 376)
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http://www.divshare.com/download/16364301-ea6

Magdaléna Rybáriková (95 photos)
Sabine Lisicki (50)

Part 3 features the Rybáriková v Lisicki quarter-final – my favourite match of Birmingham 2011 in terms of both tennis and beauty.


Friday Part 4 (Photos 377 to 462)
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http://www.divshare.com/download/16364355-1b4

Chanelle Scheepers (37)
Casey Dellacqua (33)
Marina Eraković (30)
Sorana Cîrstea (30)

Part 4 features the Eraković/Cîrstea v Dellacqua/Scheepers doubles quarter-final. It was a cold evening, and my abiding memory is of Cîrstea running to her chair in the middle of a game to put on her coat.

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2. Quarter-final eyewitness report: Hantuchová v Riske (Friday 10th June 2011)
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+ DANIELA HANTUCHOVÁ [4,EF] d. Alison Riske, 6-2 6-4

This had the potential to be a very dangerous match for Daniela, as Riske had played brilliantly to reach the semi-finals of Birmingham 2010 with wins over Anna Chakvetadze and Yanina Wickmayer, had taken a set off the great Maria Sharapova in that semi-final, and had done well to reach the quarter-finals in 2011 after not doing much in the 51 weeks between the two instances of the tournament.

Against Daniela, though, Riske was a pale shadow of her best, especially in the first set. Riske held serve in the first game of the match, but only after 40/0 had turned into five deuces, with Riske saving three break-points (two with winners). Riske’s only other game of the first set was a hold to 30 in the seventh game.

Daniela played very well throughout the match, serving big, hitting some nice volleys, some groundstroke-winners, and winning several points that she seemingly wasn’t in a position to win.

Daniela made a brilliant start to the second set, breaking in the first game with the help of a delectable crosscourt backhand dropshot-winner, and with a pinpoint backhand pass-winner down the line. However, the second set got worrying for her after that, as errors began to creep into her game, and she was broken back from *3-2 (30/0). After wasting five break-points (including 0/40) at 3-3*, Daniela tightened up at *3-4, and had to save two break-points (one with an ace) that would have left Riske serving for the second set.

With that little nightmare behind her, it was a free-flowing Daniela who jumped out to a 4-4 (40/0*) lead, converting the third of those break-points on a double fault. She wasted her first match-point at *5-4 (40/30) with a wild forehand, but hit a down-the-line forehand winner to set up a second match-point, which she converted when Riske missed a second-serve return.


First set
---------
RISKE *_____*_ 2
HANTU _*@*@*_* 6

The match was first on Centre Court. Daniela won the toss and elected to receive. The match started at 11:14 BST.

Riske serving 0-0: Daniela netted a backhand. 15/0. Riske’s depth forced Daniela to hit a forehand very long. 30/0. Daniela hit an off-forehand wide. 40/0 (GP #1). Second serve... Daniela hit a crosscourt forehand return-winner. 40/15 (GP #2). A long rally ended with Daniela hitting a pinpoint off-forehand winner down the line: just inside the sideline. 40/30 (GP #3). Daniela’s crosscourt backhand return forced Riske to net a backhand. Deuce #1. First serve: Daniela hit a crosscourt backhand return-winner. Ad Hantuchová (BP #1). Riske hit a crosscourt forehand winner just inside the sideline. Deuce #2. Riske, on the third stroke, hit a forehand long and wide. Ad Hantuchová (BP #2). First serve out wide forced Daniela to hit a backhand return halfway up the net. Deuce #3. Ace #1: first serve down the middle, on the centre-line. Ad Riske (GP #4). Double fault #1 (second serve long). Deuce #4. Double fault #2 (second serve just long). Ad Hantuchová (BP #3). Riske saved it with an off-backhand volley-winner. Deuce #5. Ace #2: first serve out wide, just inside the sideline and the service-line. Ad Riske (GP #5). Riske opened up the court with a crosscourt forehand, and hit an off-forehand winner just inside the sideline. Held.

Hantuchová serving 0-1: Daniela hit a high forehand volley-winner crosscourt. 15/0. Daniela, on the third stroke, hit a pinpoint backhand winner down the line. 30/0. Daniela, on the third stroke, hit an off-forehand winner. 40/0 (GP #1). Second serve: backhand return long. Held.

Riske serving 1-1: Second serve... Daniela forehand just long. 15/0. Daniela’s depth forced Riske to hit a crosscourt forehand wide. 15/15. Riske netted a forehand on the third stroke. 15/30. First serve down the middle forced Daniela to hit a forehand return long. 30/30. Daniela, on the fourth stroke, hit an off-forehand wide. 40/30 (GP #1). Daniela, on the fourth stroke, hit an off-backhand winner onto the sideline. Deuce #1. Daniela hit a high backhand volley-winner down the line – just inside the sideline – and said “c’mon”. Ad Hantuchová (BP #1). Double fault #3 (second serve just long). Broken.

Hantuchová serving 2-1: Daniela netted a forehand on the third stroke. 0/15. Riske ran down a dropshot, but sprayed a crosscourt forehand long and wide. 15/15. Daniela forced a short ball, and dispatched it with a forehand dropshot-winner. 30/15. Riske went to the net, but Daniela hit a crosscourt forehand pass-winner. 40/15 (GP #1). Ace #1: first serve out wide. Held.

Riske serving 1-3: Second serve: Daniela netted a backhand return. 15/0. Riske forced a short ball, but dumped a forehand into the net. 15/15. Riske served and volleyed with a first serve and a crosscourt forehand volley-winner. 30/15. Daniela hit a crosscourt backhand deep into the corner, forcing Riske to earth a backhand. 30/30. Daniela hit a deep ball onto the baseline, forcing Riske to hit a crosscourt forehand wide. 30/40 (BP #1). Daniela’s deep forehand return forced Riske to hit a forehand very long. Broken.

Riske got her coach – her sister Sarah McGlannery (née Riske) – to come onto court and talk to her at the changeover.

Hantuchová serving 4-1: Second serve... Daniela hit a deep forehand volley down the line, forcing Riske to net a backhand. 15/0. Daniela hit a crosscourt forehand winner onto the sideline. 30/0. Riske hit a down-the-line forehand just wide. 40/0 (GP #1). Daniela hit an off-backhand winner just inside the sideline. Held.

Riske serving 1-5: Double fault #4 (second serve long). 0/15. Riske hit a deep ball down the middle, forcing Daniela to hit a crosscourt forehand just wide. 15/15. Riske dumped a backhand halfway up the net. 15/30. Daniela hit a backhand lob just long. 30/30. Second serve... Riske forced a short ball, and dispatched it with a crosscourt forehand winner just inside the sideline. 40/30 (GP #1). Ace #3: first serve down the middle, on the service-line. Held.

Hantuchová serving 5-2 (new balls): Daniela netted a backhand. 0/15. Second serve: forehand return long. 15/15. First serve out wide + pinpoint crosscourt backhand winner just inside the baseline. 30/15. Daniela’s depth forced Riske to hit a backhand very long. 40/15 (SP #1). First serve out wide – on the sideline – forced Riske to hit a forehand return long and wide. Hantuchová won the first set 6-2 at 11:51 BST (37m).


Second set
----------
RISKE __*_*@*___ 4
HANTU @*_*___*@* 6

Riske serving 0-0: Second serve... Riske dumped a forehand quarterway up the net. 0/15. Second serve was called long but overruled as good, so Riske got another first serve. Second serve... Riske hit a deep off-backhand winner just inside the sideline. 15/15. Daniela hit a delectable crosscourt backhand dropshot-winner. 15/30. Double fault #5 (second serve clipped the netcord and fell long). 15/40 (BP #1). Daniela hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 30/40 (BP #2). Riske played a good spreading rally and went to the net, but Daniela hit a brilliant pinpoint backhand pass-winner down the line: just inside the sideline. Broken.

Hantuchová serving 1-0: Riske netted a backhand on the fourth stroke. 15/0. A low-bouncing ball from Daniela forced Riske to net another backhand. 30/0. Forehand return long. 40/0 (GP #1). Ace #1: second serve down the middle clipped the centre-line with a puff of titanium pigment. Held.

Riske serving 0-2: First serve out wide forced Daniela to net a forehand return. 15/0. Second serve: Daniela hit a backhand return-winner down the line. 15/15. Deep first serve forced Daniela to hit a backhand lob-return long. 30/15. Second serve: backhand return long. 40/15 (GP #1). Double fault #6 (second serve into the net). 40/30 (GP #2). Daniela hit a loose forehand long. Held.

Hantuchová serving 2-1: Daniela netted a forehand on the third stroke. 0/15. Daniela netted a forehand. 0/30. Deep first serve down the middle forced Riske to hit a backhand return long. 15/30. Daniela served and volleyed with a first serve out wide (just inside the sideline) + crosscourt forehand volley-winner. 30/30. Deep first serve down the middle + crosscourt forehand winner. 40/30 (GP #1). Deep second serve induced Riske to bunt a forehand return long. Held.

Riske serving 1-3: Deep first serve down the middle forced Daniela to hit a backhand return long. 15/0. First serve out wide: Daniela’s deep crosscourt backhand return forced Riske to net a backhand. 15/15. Riske went to the net, forcing Daniela to net a backhand. 30/15. Riske’s deep crosscourt forehand forced Daniela to net a forehand. 40/15 (GP #1). Ace #4: first serve out wide, just inside the sideline. Held.

Hantuchová serving 3-2: Ace #2: first serve down the middle, just inside the sideline. 15/0. Ace #3: first serve out wide, just inside the sideline. 30/0. Double fault #1 (second serve into the net). 30/15. Daniela forced a short ball, but sprayed an off-forehand wide. 30/30. Riske hit a short-angled crosscourt forehand winner. 30/40 (BP #1). Riske hit a deep backhand onto the baseline, forcing Daniela to hit a forehand long. Broken.

Riske serving 3-3: Riske forehand just long. 0/15. Riske hit an off-backhand wide and just long. 0/30. Riske netted a backhand. 0/40 (BP #1). Riske hit a deep ball onto the baseline, fizzing with topspin, forcing Daniela to dump a forehand into the bottom of the net. 15/40 (BP #2). Second serve... Riske went to the net, forcing Daniela to hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 30/40 (BP #3). Second serve... Daniela hit an off-backhand dropshot just wide. Deuce #1. Ace #5: first serve out wide. Ad Riske (GP #1). Riske netted a backhand. Deuce #2. Daniela hit a deep, defensive lob onto the baseline, inducing Riske to hit a forehand long. Ad Hantuchová (BP #4). Daniela netted a backhand. Deuce #3. Daniela hit a crosscourt backhand deep into the corner, inducing Riske to net a forehand. Ad Hantuchová (BP #5). Ace #6: first serve out wide, on the sideline. Deuce #4. Short-angled first serve out wide forced Daniela to net a sliced forehand return. Ad Riske (GP #2). Daniela hit a backhand just wide. Held.

Hantuchová serving 3-4: Daniela forced a floater, but sprayed a backhand drive-volley very long. 0/15. Daniela went to the net, forcing Riske to hit a down-the-line backhand pass just wide. 15/15. Riske netted a forehand. 30/15. Daniela appeared to serve an ace down the middle, just inside the centre-line, but it was called wide. Second serve: Riske’s deep return forced Daniela to hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 30/30. First serve out wide forced Riske to net a forehand. 40/30 (GP #1). Daniela wasted a good first serve out wide by hitting an off-backhand drive-volley wide. Deuce #1. Daniela forced a short ball, and dispatched it with an off-backhand dropshot-winner. Ad Hantuchová (GP #2). Second serve... Daniela hit an off-forehand wide. Deuce #2. First serve out wide + crosscourt backhand volley wide. Ad Riske (BP #1). Ace #4: 110mph first serve out wide. Deuce #3. Double fault #2 (second serve long). Ad Riske (BP #2). Second serve... Riske netted a backhand on the fourth stroke. Deuce #4. Ace #5: first serve out wide, on the sideline and just inside the service-line. Ad Hantuchová (GP #3). Deep first serve down the middle forced Riske to hit a forehand return long. Held.

Daniela changed her racket.

Riske serving 4-4 (new balls): Riske netted a backhand. 0/15. Daniela hit an off-backhand dropshot-winner. 0/30. Daniela’s short, dipping backhand return induced Riske to hit a backhand long. 0/40 (BP #1). Virtual ace out wide. 15/40 (BP #2). First serve out wide: forehand return long. 30/40 (BP #3). Double fault #7 (second serve just long). Broken.

Hantuchová serving 5-4: Ace #6: first serve out wide, just inside the sideline. 15/0. Riske forced a short ball, and dispatched it with a down-the-line backhand winner. 15/15. Second serve... Riske hit a crosscourt forehand just wide. 30/15. Second serve... Daniela hit a forehand just long. 30/30. Deep first serve forced Riske to hit a forehand long. 40/30 (MP #1 for Hantuchová). Daniela, on the third stroke, hit a wild crosscourt forehand wide and very long. Deuce #1. First serve out wide + forehand winner down the line. Ad Hantuchová (MP #2). Second serve: Riske hit a backhand return long. Hantuchová won 6-2 6-4 at 12:46 BST (second set 55m, match 1h32m).

Both players were interviewed on court:

Riske: “All credit to her. There were loads <giggling> [of chances in the second set].”

Daniela: “I think I made it complicated in the second set. It was a tough two-set match. I just try to focus on my game. Her game is good for grass.”

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3. Quarter-final eyewitness report: Ivanović v Lučić (Friday 10th June 2011)
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+ ANA IVANOVIĆ [2,DF] d. Mirjana Lučić, 6-3 6-4

This wasn’t exactly the most entertaining match, as both players were so powerful that few rallies went beyond two strokes, with Lučić in particular adopting a go-for-broke approach, but making too many errors to put Ivanović in serious trouble.

The first set was serve-dominated, the only break coming as Lučić served four double faults in the eighth game (which had three deuces).

The second set started with four consecutive breaks, followed by four consecutive holds. Then Ivanović hit some deep, error-forcing returns to break to love for *5-4, and served out to 15 for a victory that was not as terrifying as the one over Anna Tatishvili two rounds earlier.


First set
---------
LUČIĆ _*_*_*___ 3
IVANO *_*_*_*@* 6

The match was second on Centre Court. Ivanović won the toss and elected to serve, and the match started at 13:01 BST.

Ivanović serving 0-0: Deep first serve forced Lučić to hit a forehand return long. 15/0. Lučić hit another forehand return long. 30/0. Second serve out wide forced Lučić to net a forehand. 40/0 (GP #1). First serve forced Lučić to net a backhand return. Held.

Lučić serving 0-1: Ivanović hit an off-forehand down the line just wide. 15/0. Lučić, driven wide, hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 15/15. Second serve: forehand return long. 30/15. Another forehand return long. 40/15 (GP #1). Ace #1: first serve down the middle. Held.

Ivanović serving 1-1: Lučić hit a backhand long. 15/0. Lučić hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 30/0. Lučić hit a crosscourt forehand deep into the corner, forcing Ivanović to net a forehand. 30/15. Second serve: Lučić netted a forehand return. 40/15 (GP #1). Second serve out wide: forehand return long. Held.

Lučić serving 1-2: Lučić netted a backhand on the third stroke. 0/15. Lučić forced a short ball, and dispatched it with an off-forehand winner. 15/15. Lučić’s depth forced Ivanović to net a backhand. 30/15. First serve out wide forced Ivanović to bunt a one-handed backhand return long. 40/15 (GP #1). Ace #2: first serve down the middle. Held.

The groundstaff were called to the courts in anticipation of a possible rain-delay.

Ivanović serving 2-2: Lučić netted a backhand. 15/0. Ivanović’s depth forced Lučić to hit a crosscourt backhand very long. 30/0. Ivanović hit a down-the-line forehand winner onto the baseline (it looked long to me). 40/0 (GP #1). First serve out wide forced Lučić to hit a crosscourt backhand return wide. Held.

Lučić serving 2-3: Lučić netted a forehand on the third stroke. 0/15. First serve down the middle forced Ivanović to hit a forehand return long. 15/15. Lučić went to the net, but Ivanović hit a forehand pass-winner down the line. 15/30. Lučić, on the third stroke, hit a hard, deep crosscourt backhand that forced Ivanović to earth a forehand. 30/30. Second serve out wide forced Ivanović to net a forehand return. 40/30 (GP #1). Ivanović netted a backhand volley. Held.

Ivanović serving 3-3: Lučić hit a forehand long. 15/0. Lučić hit a crosscourt forehand return just wide. 30/0. Second serve: Lučić hit a down-the-line forehand return-winner. 30/15. Ace #1: first serve out wide. 40/15 (GP #1). Ace #2: first serve down the middle, on the sideline and the service-line. Held.

Lučić serving 3-4 (new balls): Second serve: Ivanović’s deep forehand return forced Lučić to net a backhand. 0/15. Ace #3: first serve out wide. 15/15. First serve out wide forced Ivanović to net a forehand return. 30/15. Double fault #1 (second serve wide of the centre-line). 30/30. First serve out wide + off-forehand winner. 40/30 (GP #1). Double fault #2 (second serve wide of the centre-line). Deuce #1. Lučić, on the third stroke, hit a backhand long. Ad Ivanović (BP #1). First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand winner. Deuce #2. First serve out wide + off-backhand winner back behind Ivanović. Ad Lučić (GP #2). Double fault #3 (second serve into the net). Deuce #3. Second serve out wide: Ivanović hit a crosscourt forehand return-winner. Ad Ivanović (BP #2). Double fault #4 (second serve just long). Broken.

Ivanović serving 5-3: Ivanović hit a crosscourt forehand winner. 15/0. Lučić hit a crosscourt backhand return just wide. 30/0. Ivanović tried to serve and volley, but Lučić’s deep crosscourt forehand return forced her to net a high forehand volley. 30/15. First serve down the middle forced Lučić to net a forehand return. 40/15 (SP #1 for Ivanović). Raindrops started falling. Ace #3: first serve down the middle. Ivanović won the first set 6-3 at 13:27 BST (26m).

Lučić got her coach (I assume it was Jeff Russell, but I don’t know what he looks like) to come onto court and talk to her at the set-break.


Second set
----------
LUČIĆ _@_@*_*___ 4
IVANO @_@__*_*@* 6

Lučić serving 0-0: Lučić, on the third stroke, hit a crosscourt backhand just wide. 0/15. Double fault #5 (second serve just long). 0/30. Lučić hit a forehand long. 0/40 (BP #1). Ivanović hit a pinpoint backhand winner down the line: just inside both the sideline and the baseline. Broken.

More raindrops fell.

Ivanović serving 1-0: Lučić’s deep crosscourt forehand return forced Ivanović to hit a crosscourt forehand wide. 0/15. Lučić netted a forehand, doubled over and yelled. 15/15. The first long rally of the match culminated with Lučić hitting a crosscourt backhand deep into the corner, inducing Ivanović to net a sliced backhand. 15/30. First serve out wide forced Lučić to earth a backhand return. 30/30. Ivanović hit a down-the-line backhand just wide – after hitting a defensive crosscourt sliced backhand just inside both the sideline and the baseline. 30/40 (BP #1). Double fault #1 (second serve into the net). Broken.

Lučić serving 1-1: Double fault #6 (second serve into the net). 0/15. Lučić, on the third stroke, netted a sliced backhand. 0/30. Lučić, on the third stroke, netted a backhand. 0/40 (BP #1). Deep first serve down the middle forced Ivanović to hit a short-angled crosscourt forehand winner. Broken.

Ivanović serving 2-1: Ivanović, on the third stroke, hit a wild crosscourt backhand wide. 0/15. Lučić hit a deep forehand return just inside the baseline, forcing Ivanović to net a forehand. 0/30. Second serve out wide sat up nicely for Lučić to hit a crosscourt forehand return-winner. 0/40 (BP #1). With Ivanović in no-man’s-land, Lučić hit a backhand long. 15/40 (BP #2). First serve out wide forced Lučić to net a forehand return. 30/40 (BP #3). Lučić hit an off-forehand winner deep into the corner. Broken.

Lučić serving 2-2: Ivanović’s deep forehand return induced Lučić to net a forehand. 0/15. Lučić hit an off-backhand deep into the corner, forcing Ivanović to net a forehand. 15/15. First serve out wide + off-forehand winner down the line: on the sideline. 30/15. Ivanović hit a pinpoint forehand down the line but slipped, and Lučić took advantage with a crosscourt backhand winner. 40/15 (GP #1). Ivanović hit an off-forehand deep into the corner, forcing Lučić to bunt a backhand long. 40/30 (GP #2). Lučić netted a forehand return. Deuce #1. Ivanović’s deep backhand return forced Lučić to net a backhand; Lučić muttered. Ad Ivanović (BP #1). Ivanović netted a makeable backhand return. Deuce #2. Ivanović, on the fourth stroke, hit a crosscourt backhand just wide. Ad Lučić (GP #3). Ivanović hit a deep crosscourt backhand defensive lob; Lučić nailed a down-the-line backhand winner. Held.

Lučić got her coach to come onto court and talk to her at the changeover.

Ivanović serving 2-3: Ivanović hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 0/15. First serve out wide forced Lučić to net a backhand return. 15/15. Lučić’s deep forehand return forced Ivanović to net a backhand. 15/30. First serve out wide forced Lučić to net a backhand return. 30/30. Serve out wide forced Lučić to net a forehand return. 40/30 (GP #1). First serve out wide, deep in the corner, forced Lučić to earth a backhand return. Held.

Lučić serving 3-3: Ivanović hit a backhand return long. 15/0. Double fault #7 (second serve just wide of the sideline). 15/15. Double fault #8 (second serve into the net). 15/30. Lučić’s deep crosscourt forehand forced Ivanović to net a forehand. 30/30. Lučić opened up the court with a deep crosscourt forehand, and hit a forehand winner down the line. 40/30 (GP #1). Lučić hit an off-forehand back behind Ivanović, forcing her to net a backhand. Held.

Ivanović serving 3-4 (new balls): First serve out wide, on the service-line, forced Lučić to hit a forehand return long. 15/0. Double fault #2 (second serve just long). 15/15. Ace #4 (second serve out wide: I think that Lučić actually clipped it with her racket, but officially it went down as an ace). 30/15. First serve: Lučić’s backhand return clipped the netcord and dropped dead for a winner. 30/30. Ivanović’s depth forced Lučić to hit a backhand very long. 40/30 (GP #1). First serve out wide forced Lučić to earth a backhand return. Held.

Lučić serving 4-4: Ivanović’s deep forehand return forced Lučić to hit a forehand very long. 0/15. Second serve... Lučić, on the third stroke, hit an off-backhand wide. 0/30. Ivanović hit a deep return just inside the baseline, forcing Lučić to hit a backhand halfway up the net. 0/40 (BP #1). First serve down the middle: Ivanović hit a crosscourt forehand return-winner deep into the corner. Broken.

Ivanović serving 5-4: Lučić hit a deep forehand return just inside the baseline, forcing Ivanović to hit a backhand long. 0/15. First serve: Lučić hit a wild forehand return very long. 15/15. First serve forced a short return; Ivanović went to the net behind an off-forehand; Lučić netted a makeable backhand pass. 30/15. Ace #5: first serve out wide. 40/15 (MP #1 for Ivanović). Second serve out wide induced Lučić to net a forehand. Ivanović won 6-3 6-4 at 14:00 BST (second set 33m, match 59m).

Ivanović’s on-court interview: “I’m very happy. She’s a great player on grass... really good first set... it just happened for me.”

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4. Quarter-final eyewitness report: Rybáriková v Lisicki (Friday 10th June 2011)
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- MAGDALÉNA RYBÁRIKOVÁ [14,EF] lt. Sabine Lisicki [DF], 6-7 (1/7) 4-6

In terms of two players both playing well at the same time, this was the best match that I have seen since Nicole Vaidišová v Ana Ivanović at Wimbledon 2007. It was certainly worthy of more than an International quarter-final – I don’t think anyone who appreciates fine tennis would have been disappointed had this been a Wimbledon final. That’s the kind of audience that it deserved.

Both girls have big serves, and Sabine likes to hit dropshots as early in the rally and as often as possible. They had numerous fantastic rallies, with Magda out-Lisickiing Sabine on some occasions, and Sabine outfoxing Magda on others, as they both tried to pin each other back and then hit dropshots, and Magda hit some fantastic high volleys. Both girls were extremely determined, with Magda shouting even after forced errors, and Sabine running into the side fence as she tried to retrieve one Magda smash!

There were no breaks in the first set, although Sabine recovered from *2-2 (15/40) with two actual aces and a virtual ace, and Magda from *4-5 (15/30) with some good first serves of her own.

Sabine dominated the tiebreak with the help of two groundstroke winners and two aces (one at set-point), and sadly for Magda fans, there was little chance that she would be able to recover from going a break down at the start of the second with Sabine playing and serving so well, and so it proved. Magda continued to play well on her own service-games, but couldn’t put pressure on Sabine’s.

When Sabine hit a crosscourt forehand winner deep into the corner from a deep position to break for 1:0 *5-2, it looked like the final nail in Magda’s coffin, but Sabine threw her a lifeline by double-faulting for 5-3* (Sabine’s only double fault of the match), and Magda held for 4-5* with the help of a fantastic off-forehand smash-winner running backwards, an ace and a crosscourt forehand winner.

Magda rallied from 0:1 4-5* 0/30* to 40/30*, but an unforced error and Sabine’s pinpoint forehand winner down the line gave Sabine her first match-point. Magda saved it by winning a nail-biting meaty baseline-rally, then had two break-points, but Sabine saved them with a deep first serve and a forehand smash-winner, and sealed victory with the help of two more big first serves.

While I certainly wasn’t happy that Magda lost to Sabine, who was supposed to play her part in a great match but lose gracefully, I wasn’t devastated either. It was wonderful to see Sabine back playing so well after the terrible ankle-injury that derailed her career at Indian Wells 2010, and she was just 13 days away from joining Magda in my Eternal Fanship.


First set
---------
RYBÁRIK _*_*_*_*_*_*_ 6
LISICKI *_*_*_*_*_*_T 7

The match was fourth on Centre Court. Magda won the toss and elected to receive, and the match started at 16:50 BST.

Lisicki serving 0-0: A long opening rally ended with Sabine running down a dropshot to hit a short-angled crosscourt backhand winner. 15/0. Sabine hit a crosscourt forehand deep into the corner for a virtual winner. 30/0. Sabine, on the third stroke, hit a crosscourt forehand dropshot-winner. 40/0 (GP #1). Sabine, on the third stroke, hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 40/15 (GP #2). Second serve: Magda netted a backhand return. Held.

Rybáriková serving 0-1: Sabine netted a forehand return. 15/0. Second serve: backhand return just long. 30/0. First serve: Sabine blasted a forehand return long. 40/0 (GP #1). First serve: Sabine netted a backhand return. Held.

Lisicki serving 1-1: First serve out wide: forehand return long. 15/0. Sabine tried to serve and volley behind a first serve out wide, but dumped a crosscourt forehand volley into the net, and emitted a high-pitched yell. 15/15. Sabine, on the third stroke, hit a crosscourt forehand drop-volley winner. 30/15. Sabine, on the third stroke, hit a backhand just long. 30/30. Ace #1: first serve out wide. 40/30 (GP #1). Second serve... one of Magda’s trademark jumping crosscourt backhands induced Sabine to hit a backhand long. Deuce #1. Sabine’s depth forced Magda to hit a forehand just long. Ad Lisicki (GP #2). First serve down the middle forced Magda to earth a forehand return. Held.

Rybáriková serving 1-2: First serve out wide forced Sabine to net a forehand return. 15/0. Magda, on the third stroke, hit a forehand dropshot to draw Sabine to the net, and hit a forehand pass-winner down the line. 30/0. Ace #1: first serve out wide, on the sideline. 40/0 (GP #1). First serve: Sabine netted a backhand return. Held.

Lisicki serving 2-2: Second serve... Magda pinned Sabine back behind the baseline, then hit a forehand dropshot-winner. 0/15. Ace #2: first serve down the middle. 15/15. Second serve... Magda hit a deep forehand onto the baseline, forcing Sabine to hit a forehand very long. 15/30. Magda’s deep crosscourt forehand forced Sabine to net a forehand. 15/40 (BP #1). Virtual ace: first serve down the middle. 30/40 (BP #2). Ace #3: first serve down the middle. Deuce #1. Ace #4: first serve out wide. Ad Lisicki (GP #1). Sabine’s depth forced Magda to hit a sliced off-backhand wide. Held.

15/40 and three huge serves – Sabine would enjoy a similar recovery from double match-point down against Lǐ,Nŕ at Wimbledon 13 days later.

Rybáriková serving 2-3: First serve out wide + cheeky forehand dropshot-winner with wicked sidespin to the right. 15/0. Deep first serve out wide: backhand return long. 30/0. Magda sliced a backhand long. 30/15. Ace #2: first serve down the middle. 40/15 (GP #1). Magda netted a forehand on the third stroke, and muttered. 40/30 (GP #2). Magda drew Sabine to the net with a dropshot, then hit a forehand lob-winner. Held.

Lisicki serving 3-3: Sabine forehand just long. 0/15. Kick second serve out wide: backhand return long. 15/15. Second serve... Magda’s dropshot bounced too high... Sabine hit a forehand smash-winner. 30/15. Sabine netted a forehand on the third stroke. 30/30. Magda went to the net, but Sabine hit an awkward lob over Magda’s left shoulder, forcing her to run left and hit an off-backhand volley just wide. 40/30 (GP #1). First serve out wide: Magda netted a forehand return. Held.

Rybáriková serving 3-4 (new balls): Magda served and volleyed with a crosscourt backhand volley-winner. 15/0. Sabine forehand just long. 30/0. Ace #3: first serve down the middle. 40/0 (GP #1). Magda caught two bad tosses. Ace #4: first serve down the middle. Held.

Lisicki serving 4-4: Second serve... Sabine’s deep, defensive lob proved awkward for Magda, who netted a forehand smash. 15/0. Sabine went to the net and hit a crosscourt forehand drop-volley winner. 30/0. Second serve... Magda’s depth pinned Sabine back behind the baseline; Magda hit a forehand dropshot-winner. 30/15. Ace #5: first serve down the middle, just inside the sideline. 40/15 (GP #1). First serve out wide + off-forehand winner just inside the sideline. Held.

Rybáriková serving 4-5: Second serve... Sabine pinned Magda back behind the baseline, then hit an off-forehand dropshot-winner. 0/15. Magda, on the third stroke, hit an off-forehand dropshot, forcing Sabine to net a backhand; Sabine emitted a high-pitched yelp, and then smiled. 15/15. Double fault #1 (second serve just long). 15/30. First serve out wide forced Sabine to net a backhand return. 30/30. Sabine forehand just long. 40/30 (GP #1). Magda netted a forehand on the third stroke. Deuce #1. Sabine’s forehand return clipped the netcord and fell back on her side. Ad Rybáriková (GP #2). First serve out wide, deep in the corner, forced Sabine to hit a backhand lob-return long. Held.

Lisicki serving 5-5: Magda hit a deep forehand onto the baseline, forcing Sabine to net a forehand. 0/15. Ace #6: first serve down the middle, on the centre-line. 15/15. Magda hit an off-forehand just wide, and yelled. 30/15. Sabine hit an off-forehand just inside the sideline, forcing Magda to net a backhand. 40/15 (GP #1). Magda ran down a dropshot, but hit a crosscourt backhand just wide. Held.

Rybáriková serving 5-6: Sabine’s deep crosscourt forehand return induced Magda to net a forehand. 0/15. Sabine hit a forehand just long. 15/15. Sabine hit a forehand long and wide. 30/15. Sabine hit a down-the-line backhand return-winner. 30/30. First serve out wide: Sabine hit a forehand return long, and sank to her haunches. 40/30 (GP #1). First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand winner just inside the sideline. Held.

6-6 tiebreak (all scores Rybáriková/Lisicki):
{0/0*} Magda hit a forehand just long.
{*0/1} Sabine hit an off-forehand winner just inside the sideline.
{*0/2} Sabine’s short-angled crosscourt forehand forced Magda to net a forehand.
{0/3*} Sabine hit an off-backhand winner back behind Magda.
{0/4*} Ace #7: first serve down the middle, just inside the service-line.
{*0/5} Magda’s depth pinned Sabine back behind the baseline; Magda hit an off-forehand dropshot-winner.
{*1/5} Sabine’s deep, mildly awkward forehand return induced Magda to net a forehand.
{1/6*: SP #1 for Lisicki} Ace #8: first serve down the middle. Lisicki won the first set 7-6 at 17:36 BST (46m).

Magda got her coach Martin Hromec to come onto court and talk to her at the set-break.


Second set
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RYBÁRIK __*_*__@*_ 4
LISICKI @*_*_*@__* 6

Rybáriková serving 0-0: Magda, on the third stroke, netted a forehand dropshot. 0/15. Magda’s first serve was out, but she complained that it was “clearly on the line”. Second serve... Magda’s dropshot induced Sabine to net a forehand dropshot. 15/15. Magda went to the net and hit a crosscourt backhand volley-winner. 30/15. Magda ran down a dropshot, but netted a forehand. 30/30. Sabine forced a short ball, dispatched it with an off-forehand winner, and said, “C’mon!” 30/40 (BP #1). Second serve: backhand return long. Deuce #1. Magda forced a short floater and dispatched it with a forehand smash-winner; Sabine ran right up to the side fence in an attempt to reach it! Ad Rybáriková (GP #1). Second serve... Sabine forced a short ball, and dispatched it with a crosscourt forehand winner. Deuce #2. Sabine ran down a dropshot, and dispatched it with an off-forehand winner. Ad Lisicki (BP #2). Magda, on the third stroke, hit an off-forehand wide. Broken.

Lisicki serving 1-0: Magda netted an off-backhand volley. 15/0. Ace #9: first serve out wide; Sabine said, “C’mon!” 30/0. Sabine’s depth forced Magda to hit a backhand long. 40/0 (GP #1). Deep first serve out wide forced Magda to net a backhand return. Sabine said, “Okay.” Held.

Rybáriková serving 0-2: Second serve... Sabine ran down a dropshot and hit an off-forehand dropshot-winner. 0/15. Kick second serve out wide: backhand return long. 15/15. Magda went to the net, but Sabine’s crosscourt forehand forced her to hit a half-volley forehand and retreat; Sabine hit another crosscourt forehand, forcing Magda to hit a forehand long. 15/30. Ace #5: first serve out wide. 30/30. First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand volley-winner. 40/30 (GP #1). Sabine’s pinpoint backhand down the line forced Magda to net a forehand. Deuce #1. First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand volley-winner back behind Sabine. Ad Rybáriková (GP #2). First serve out wide forced Sabine to net a backhand return. Held.

Lisicki serving 2-1 (new balls): First serve out wide: forehand return long. 15/0. Body-jamming serve: Magda netted a makeable backhand return. 30/0. Sabine mishit a forehand dropshot into the net. 30/15. Magda netted a backhand. 40/15 (GP #1). Sabine hit an off-backhand winner just inside the sideline. Held.

Rybáriková serving 1-3: Sabine hit an off-forehand wide, and emitted a high-pitched yelp. 15/0. Sabine hit a deep forehand lob just inside the baseline; Magda ran around her backhand and hit a forehand very long. 15/15. Second serve... Sabine hit a deep forehand onto the baseline, forcing Magda to hit an off-forehand wide. 15/30. Magda went to the net, but Sabine’s lob forced her to retreat; Magda ran around her backhand and dumped a forehand into the net. 15/40 (BP #1). First serve out wide + off-forehand winner just inside the baseline. 30/40 (BP #2). Sabine hit a backhand just long. Deuce #1. Second serve... Magda hit a crosscourt backhand dropshot; Sabine ran it down but netted a backhand. Ad Rybáriková (GP #1). Second serve: Sabine hit a forehand return long; Magda had to jump out of the way to avoid it. Held.

Lisicki serving 3-2: First serve out wide: forehand return long. 15/0. Magda hit a down-the-line forehand long. 30/0. Second serve... Magda forced a floater, and dispatched it with an off-forehand smash-winner. 30/15. Sabine’s dropshot induced Magda to hit a forehand long; Sabine said, “Komm jetzt!” while Magda groaned. 40/15 (GP #1). Ace #10: first serve out wide. Sabine said, “C’mon!” Held.

Rybáriková serving 2-4: Magda went to the net, but Sabine hit a pinpoint backhand winner down the line. 0/15. Second serve... Sabine’s dropshot forced Magda to net a sliced backhand. 0/30. Magda hit a crosscourt forehand wide. 0/40 (BP #1). Sabine, from a deep position, drilled a crosscourt forehand winner deep into the corner, and said, “C’mon!” Broken.

Lisicki serving 5-2: Virtual ace: first serve out wide. 15/0. Magda’s crosscourt forehand dropshot drew Sabine to the net-post; Magda hit an off-forehand smash-winner. 15/15. Magda hit a deep forehand down the line, forcing Sabine to hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 15/30. Sabine netted a forehand dropshot. 15/40 (BP #1). Magda hit a crosscourt forehand just wide, and yelled. 30/40 (BP #2). Double fault #1 (second serve just long). Broken.

Rybáriková serving 3-5: Second serve... Magda, on the third stroke, hit a forehand just long. 0/15. Magda forced a floater and, running backwards, hit a magnificent off-forehand smash-winner. 15/15. Ace #6: first serve down the middle. 30/15. First serve out wide forced a short return, which Magda dispatched with a crosscourt forehand winner. 40/15 (GP #1). First serve out wide + off-forehand volley forced Sabine to net a backhand. Held.

The official statistics say that Magda only served one ace in the second set, but I saw two: at *0-2 15/30 and *3-5 15/15.

Magda got her coach Martin Hromec to come onto court and talk to her at the changeover. Sabine got her coach – her father Dr Richard Lisicki – to come onto court and talk to her at the changeover.

Lisicki serving 5-4: Sabine hit an off-backhand just inside the sideline, forcing Magda to net a forehand; Magda yelled. 15/0. Magda hit an off-forehand return just wide. 30/0. Magda’s sliced off-backhand approach forced Sabine to net a forehand. 30/15. Second serve... a nail-biting rally culminated with Magda hitting an off-backhand deep into the corner – just inside the sideline – that forced Sabine to hit a forehand lob long. 30/30. Second serve... Magda hit a deep forehand just inside the baseline, forcing Sabine to hit a forehand long. 30/40 (BP #1). Second serve... Magda hit a sliced backhand just long. Deuce #1. First serve out wide + pinpoint forehand winner down the line; Sabine said, “Komm jetzt!” Ad Lisicki (MP #1). A nail-biting baseline rally, with both girls hitting huge groundstrokes, ended with Sabine hitting a crosscourt forehand just wide. Deuce #2. Magda’s deep forehand approach forced Sabine to hit a crosscourt backhand wide; Magda pumped her fist. Ad Rybáriková (BP #2). Deep first serve out wide: Magda netted a backhand return, and said, “No!” Deuce #3. Second serve... Sabine sprayed a wild forehand long. Ad Rybáriková (BP #3). First serve down the middle forced Magda to bunt back a defensive forehand lob-return, which Sabine dispatched with an off-forehand smash-winner; Sabine said, “C’mon!” Deuce #4. First serve out wide + short-angled crosscourt forehand drive-volley forced Magda to net a forehand. Ad Lisicki (MP #2). First serve out wide: Magda netted a backhand return. Lisicki won 7-6 6-4 at 18:22 BST (second set 46m, match 1h32m).

Sabine’s on-court interview: “It just means so much: not just a match, but a semi-final on the WTA. It’s great to be back on grass. I’m so sad that I couldn’t be back last year. She was serving amazingly. I’ve won all my tiebreaks so far this year [in the tournament]. Every point on grass can be a deciding point.”

--
Dr. Andrew Broad

andrewbroad
Dec 22nd, 2011, 12:57 AM
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AEGON CLASSIC (Edgbaston, Birmingham, England; grass; WTA International)
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Contents
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1. Photos
2. Semi-final eyewitness report: Hantuchová v Ivanović
3. Semi-final eyewitness report: Lisicki v Péng

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1. Photos (Saturday 11th June 2011)
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Permission to copy my Birmingham photos is granted provided that:
(a) no money is exchanged;
(b) they are labelled as “Copyright Andrew Broad 2011”.
Please let me know if you do use them on another website.

Since I don’t have time to upload hundreds of photos a day individually, I have uploaded each batch of photos as a large zip-file (approximately as many megabytes as photos).

Should my Divshare download-limit be exceeded, it will be reset on 15th January 2012.

Saturday’s photos are in two volumes.


Saturday Part 1 (Photos 001 to 182)
---------------

http://www.divshare.com/download/16433074-48c

Daniela Hantuchová (119 photos)
Ana Ivanović (58)
Roberta Vinci (11)
Sara Errani (7)
Martina Navrátilová (4)
Lisa Raymond (4)
Ann Jones (2)
Stacey Allaster (2)

Part 1 features the Hantuchová v Ivanović semi-final (Photos 010–133 and 153–182).

Before that, there was an on-court celebration of the 30th instance of the tournament (they were wrong to call it the “30th anniversary”, as the first instance was in 1982), featuring WTA CEO Allaster and players Raymond, Jones and Navrátilová.

During the rain-delay, I saw Errani and Vinci practising together (Photos 135–152).


Saturday Part 2 (Photos 183 to 323)
---------------

http://www.divshare.com/download/16432881-cc3

Sabine Lisicki (71 photos)
Péng,Shuŕi (45)
Olga Govortsova (25)
Chanelle Scheepers (13)
Casey Dellacqua (8)
Alla Kudryavtseva (6)

Part 2 features the Lisicki v Péng semi-final (Photos 183–284), and the warm-up for the Dellacqua/Scheepers v Govortsova/Kudryavtseva doubles semi-final (Photos 285–323).

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2. Semi-final eyewitness report: Hantuchová v Ivanović (Saturday 11th June 2011)
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+ DANIELA HANTUCHOVÁ [4,EF] d. ANA IVANOVIĆ [2,DF], 6-7 (2/7) 6-3 6-2

Usually, when Daniela’s on court, it’s all about her. This match, however, was more about the ups and downs of Ivanović, who played brilliantly at times, but very erratically at others.

“When it’s good, it’s really good, and when it’s bad, I go to pieces”
[David Bowie, “Candidate”]

Ivanović started the match like she was going to blow Daniela away, as Ivanović took a 0:0 4-1* (40/0*) lead with huge serves and forehand winners. At that exact point, however, Ivanović went off the boil, making a series of unforced errors and double faults as Daniela fought back to 4-4* after saving another break-point at *3-4 (30/40).

Daniela at 0:0 *4-5 led 40/0, but had to save two nonconsecutive set-points (one with a fantastic crosscourt backhand volley) before holding after four deuces. She got out of that game with an ace, and Ivanović recovered from *5-5 (15/40) to hold for 6-5*.

Daniela at 0:0 *5-6 held to love with a pinpoint backhand winner down the line, a crosscourt forehand winner and two excellent serves, but Ivanović dominated the tiebreak, closing out the first set with two consecutive aces from *5/2.

Daniela recovered from 0:1 *1-1 (15/40) with four winners in a row. She recovered from 0:1 *2-2 (15/40) as her off-backhand at 30/40 was called wide but overruled as a winner; she then held for 3-2* with two forehand winners (one a drive-volley).

Daniela squandered a break-point at 0:1 3-2* (Ad), and the key game of the match came at 0:1 *3-3: a seven-deuce game played in steady drizzle, with Daniela saving six break-points – four of them with clean winners.

Daniela then hit two crosscourt forehand winners (one a volley) to break for 0:1 *5-3, and served out the second set to 15.

Due to persistent drizzle, they took a six-minute break before beginning the third set, then played one game – with Ivanović holding for 15 for 1:1 1-0* – before the match was suspended for 48 minutes.

Daniela saved two break-points at 1:1 *1-2 (Ad×2) – with an ace out wide and a crosscourt forehand drive-volley winner – and held for 2-2*.

Ivanović then went to pieces, throwing in two sloppy service-games to go 1:1 2-5* down, with a nice hold for Daniela in between (she hit a crosscourt backhand pass and a forehand smash-winner). Daniela then served out the match to love, sealing victory with a crosscourt forehand volley-winner – she won the last eleven points of the match.


First set
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HANTUCHO @____*@*_*_*_ 6
IVANOVIĆ _@*@*___*_*_T 7

The match was first on Centre Court. The weather was initially sunny and windy. Daniela won the toss and chose to receive, and the match started at 12:10 BST.

Ivanović serving 0-0: Daniela’s deep return forced Ivanović to dump a forehand thirdway up the net. 0/15. Ivanović netted a forehand on the third stroke. 0/30. Ivanović, on the third stroke, hit a crosscourt forehand winner back behind Daniela. 15/30. Double fault #1 (second serve long). 15/40 (BP #1). Serve out wide: Daniela hit a wild down-the-line forehand return wide. 30/40 (BP #2). Daniela netted a cheap forehand on the fourth stroke. Deuce #1. Ivanović hit a forehand long. Ad Hantuchová (BP #3). Daniela’s low-bouncing forehand forced Ivanović to net a backhand. Broken.

Ivanović had already argued twice with the umpire.

Hantuchová serving 1-0: First serve out wide: Ivanović netted a forehand return. 15/0. Daniela hit a backhand long. 15/15. Second serve... Daniela netted a backhand. 15/30. Daniela, on the third stroke, hit a backhand dropshot-winner down the line as Ivanović slipped. 30/30. Daniela, on the third stroke, netted an off-backhand dropshot. 30/40 (BP #1). Daniela, on the third stroke, hit a backhand long. Broken.

Ivanović serving 1-1: Ace #1: first serve out wide. 15/0. Ivanović hit an off-forehand winner. 30/0. Second serve: Daniela hit a forehand return just long, but said that it was “on the line”. 40/0 (GP #1). Ivanović hit an off-forehand winner back behind Daniela. Held.

Hantuchová serving 1-2: First serve out wide: Ivanović hit a down-the-line forehand return-winner. 0/15. Ivanović hit an off-backhand wide. 15/15. Ivanović hit a backhand winner down the line: just past Daniela’s outstretched racket. 15/30. Double fault #1 (second serve into the net). 15/40 (BP #1). Second serve: Ivanović hit a down-the-line forehand return-winner. Broken.

Ivanović serving 3-1: Second serve out wide: forehand return long. 15/0. Daniela hit a forehand just long on the fourth stroke. 30/0. First serve out wide: Daniela chopped a forehand return into the net. 40/0 (GP #1). Ivanović netted a backhand. 40/15 (GP #2). Ace #2: first serve down the middle. Held.

Hantuchová serving 1-4: Ivanović’s deep return forced Daniela to net a backhand. 0/15. Ivanović, on the fourth stroke, hit a crosscourt forehand winner. 0/30. Daniela hit a forehand long. 0/40 (BP #1). Ivanović hit a forehand long. 15/40 (BP #2). Ivanović netted a cheap forehand. 30/40 (BP #3). Ivanović hit a crosscourt backhand return just wide. Deuce #1. Daniela’s low-bouncing crosscourt backhand forced Ivanović to earth a backhand. Ad Hantuchová (GP #1). Backhand return long. Held.

From 4-1* (40/0*), Ivanović suddenly went off the boil.

Ivanović serving 4-2: Second serve... Ivanović hit a forehand long. 0/15. Daniela hit a short-angled crosscourt backhand just inside the sideline, forcing Ivanović to mishit a crosscourt backhand just wide. 0/30. Second serve... Ivanović hit a crosscourt backhand deep into the corner, forcing Daniela to net a backhand. 15/30. First serve out wide forced Daniela to bunt a one-handed backhand lob that landed wide on her own side of the net. 30/30. Daniela thought she’d hit an off-backhand winner onto the sideline and said “c’mon”, then complained after it was called wide. 40/30 (GP #1). Double fault #2 (second serve just long). Deuce #1. Daniela’s deep forehand down the line forced Ivanović to net a backhand; Daniela said “c’mon”. Ad Hantuchová (BP #1). Ace #3: first serve out wide. Deuce #2. Double fault #3 (second serve long). Ad Hantuchová (BP #2). Double fault #4 (second serve long). Broken.

Hantuchová serving 3-4 (new balls): Second serve: Ivanović hit a cheap backhand return long. 15/0. Daniela netted a backhand. 15/15. First serve: Ivanović netted a backhand. 30/15. Second serve... Daniela played a good spreading rally, went to the net and hit a crosscourt forehand volley, but Ivanović hit a pinpoint crosscourt forehand pass-winner onto the sideline. 30/30. Daniela netted a backhand. 30/40 (BP #1). A deep, low-bouncing ball from Daniela forced Ivanović to net a backhand. Deuce #1. Daniela opened up the court with a crosscourt backhand, and hit a crosscourt forehand winner. Ad Hantuchová (GP #1). First serve: backhand return long. Held.

Ivanović serving 4-4: First serve out wide: forehand return long. 15/0. Second serve... Daniela hit a deep crosscourt forehand just inside the baseline, but Ivanović somehow pulled off a short forehand winner – it didn’t look as though she meant it. 30/0. Ace #4: first serve down the middle. 40/0 (GP #1). Second serve: Daniela netted a forehand return. Held.

Hantuchová serving 4-5: Second serve out wide + crosscourt backhand winner just inside the sideline. 15/0. Second serve: crosscourt backhand return long and wide. 30/0. First serve down the middle forced Ivanović to earth a backhand return. 40/0 (GP #1). Second serve... Ivanović hit an off-forehand winner deep into the corner. 40/15 (GP #2). Second serve... Daniela had too much time to hit a crosscourt forehand, and sprayed it wide. 40/30 (GP #3). Second serve... Ivanović’s deep off-forehand forced Daniela to bunt a backhand long. Deuce #1. Short second serve: Ivanović hit a crosscourt forehand return-winner onto the sideline. Ad Ivanović (SP #1). Daniela bravely went to the net; Ivanović hit a hard forehand down the line, but Daniela picked off a fantastic crosscourt backhand volley-winner! Deuce #2. Daniela netted a forehand on the third stroke. Ad Ivanović (SP #2). Daniela’s crosscourt forehand forced Ivanović to net a running forehand. Deuce #3. Ivanović hit a wild forehand return very long; Daniela said “c’mon”. Ad Hantuchová (GP #4). A deep, hard ball from Ivanović forced Daniela to hit a crosscourt forehand just wide. Deuce #4. Second serve... a long rally ended with Ivanović hitting a loose forehand long. Ad Hantuchová (GP #5). Ace #1: first serve down the middle clipped the outside edge of the sideline; Daniela said “c’mon”. Held.

Ivanović serving 5-5: Daniela’s deep forehand return forced Ivanović to hit an off-forehand wide. 0/15. Second serve... Ivanović netted a forehand volley. 0/30. Ace #5: first serve down the middle. 15/30. Double fault #5 (second serve long). 15/40 (BP #1). Second serve: forehand return long. 30/40 (BP #2). Daniela went to the net, but Ivanović’s down-the-line backhand forced her to net a high forehand volley. Deuce #1. Ivanović caught two tosses. Ace #6: first serve out wide. Ad Ivanović (GP #1). Second serve... Daniela forehand just long. Held.

It was now cold and windy.

Hantuchová serving 5-6: Daniela hit a pinpoint backhand winner down the line: on the sideline. 15/0. First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand winner. 30/0. Deep first serve out wide forced Ivanović to hit a forehand return long. 40/0 (GP #1). Ace #2: first serve out wide, on the sideline. Daniela said “c’mon”. Held.

6-6 tiebreak (all scores Hantuchová/Ivanović):
{0/0*} Daniela had the initiative, but netted a forehand on the fourth stroke.
{*0/1} Daniela opened up the court with an off-backhand, and hit a crosscourt backhand winner deep into the corner.
{*1/1} Ivanović went to the net behind a weak sliced backhand; Daniela hit a down-the-line forehand pass-winner.
{2/1*} Ivanović hit an off-forehand winner, and said “ajde”.
{2/2*} Daniela forced a short ball, but hit an off-forehand just wide.
{*2/3} Daniela wasted a good first serve out wide by hitting a crosscourt forehand long on the third stroke.
{*2/4} Daniela hit a backhand long, and Ivanović celebrated the error with another “ajde”.
{2/5*} Ace #7: first serve out wide, on the sideline. Ivanović said “ajde” again.
{2/6: SP #3 for Ivanović} Ace #8: first serve out wide. Ivanović won the first set 7-6 at 13:12 BST (1h02m), and celebrated with yet another “ajde”.


Second set
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HANTUCHO *_*_*_*@* 6
IVANOVIĆ _*_*_*___ 3

Hantuchová serving 0-0: First serve out wide forced Ivanović to net a forehand return. 15/0. Daniela went to the net, but Ivanović hit a forehand pass-winner down the line. 15/15. First serve out wide forced Ivanović to net a forehand return. 30/15. Deep first serve forced Ivanović to net a forehand return. 40/15 (GP #1). Daniela forced a floater, and dispatched it with a high crosscourt forehand drive-volley winner just inside the sideline. Held.

The first raindrops appeared.

Ivanović serving 0-1: First serve out wide forced Daniela to hit a crosscourt forehand return wide. 15/0. Ivanović hit a crosscourt backhand deep into the corner, forcing Daniela to earth a backhand. 30/0. Ivanović dispatched a short return with a crosscourt forehand winner. 40/0 (GP #1). First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand dropshot-winner. Held.

Hantuchová serving 1-1: Daniela netted a forehand. 0/15. Deep second serve out wide – on the service-line – forced Ivanović to net a backhand return. 15/15. Daniela got a short return, but dumped a forehand halfway up the net. 15/30. Daniela hit a forehand just long on the third stroke. 15/40 (BP #1). First serve out wide + down-the-line forehand winner. 30/40 (BP #2). Daniela hit a crosscourt backhand just inside the sideline, pushing Ivanović outside the doubles-alley; Daniela hit a crosscourt forehand winner. Deuce #1. Daniela opened up the court with a crosscourt forehand, then hit a crosscourt backhand winner just inside the sideline. Ad Hantuchová (GP #1). Ivanović went to the net, but Daniela squeezed a pinpoint backhand pass-winner down the line. Held.

Ivanović serving 1-2 (new balls): Ace #9: first serve out wide. 15/0. Ace #10: first serve out wide, on the sideline and just inside the service-line. 30/0. Ace #11: first serve down the middle. 40/0 (GP #1). Ivanović netted a backhand dropshot on the third stroke. 40/15 (GP #2). Double fault #6 (second serve into the net). 40/30 (GP #3). Ivanović’s deep crosscourt backhand forced Daniela to hit a down-the-line backhand wide. Held.

More raindrops.

Hantuchová serving 2-2: First serve out wide: Ivanović hit a crosscourt forehand return-winner, and said “ajde” before the ball was even dead. 0/15. Daniela backhand long. 0/30. Daniela, on the third stroke, hit an off-backhand winner just inside the sideline. 15/30. First serve out wide: Ivanović’s backhand return clipped the netcord and dropped dead for a winner. 15/40 (BP #1). First serve out wide: backhand return long. 30/40 (BP #2). Daniela hit an off-backhand winner onto the sideline – Ivanović said “ajde” as it was initially called wide, then argued as it was overruled as a clean winner. Deuce #1. There was a cold gust of wind. Daniela, on the fifth stroke, hit a high crosscourt forehand drive-volley winner, and said “c’mon”. Ad Hantuchová (GP #1). Second serve out wide + crosscourt forehand winner just inside the sideline. Daniela pumped her fist and said “c’mon”. Held.

Ivanović serving 2-3: First serve out wide forced Daniela to hit a forehand return just long. 15/0. Ivanović’s deep, low-bouncing crosscourt backhand forced Daniela to net a backhand. 30/0. Second serve... Daniela, driven wide by Ivanović’s crosscourt backhand, bunted a one-handed backhand into the net. 40/0 (GP #1). Ivanović went to the net, but Daniela hit an awkward lob over Ivanović’s left shoulder, forcing her to net a backhand half-volley. 40/15 (GP #2). Second serve... Ivanović, on the third stroke, dumped a forehand halfway up the net. 40/30 (GP #3). Daniela hit a deep, defensive backhand lob just inside the baseline, inducing Ivanović to net a forehand. Deuce #1. Daniela’s crosscourt forehand drove Ivanović wide, forcing her to hit a forehand long. Ad Hantuchová (BP #1). Serve down the middle, on the centre-line, forced Daniela to hit an off-forehand return wide; Ivanović said “ajde”. Deuce #2. Ace #12: first serve out wide. Ad Ivanović (GP #4). Daniela defended well in a long rally, but hit a crosscourt backhand wide. Held.

Yet more raindrops.

Hantuchová serving 3-3: Second serve: Ivanović hit an off-forehand return-winner. 0/15. First serve + off-forehand winner. 15/15. Daniela’s crosscourt forehand forced Ivanović to net a forehand. 30/15. Ivanović hit a crosscourt forehand deep into the corner, forcing Daniela to net a forehand. 30/30. Daniela hit an off-backhand drive-volley just wide. 30/40 (BP #1). Daniela’s forehand smash forced Ivanović to hit a forehand long; Daniela said “vamos”. Deuce #1. Daniela’s forehand clipped the netcord and fell wide. Ad Ivanović (BP #2). First serve out wide + off-backhand winner. Deuce #2. Ivanović hit a crosscourt backhand deep into the corner, forcing Daniela to net a backhand; Ivanović said “ajde”. Ad Ivanović (BP #3). Ivanović’s crosscourt forehand drove Daniela wide, but she hit a fabulous short-angled crosscourt forehand winner just inside the sideline. Deuce #3. Ivanović hit a deep forehand down the line, forcing Daniela to net a backhand. Ad Ivanović (BP #4). Second serve: Ivanović netted a backhand return. Deuce #4. Daniela netted a backhand dropshot on the third stroke. Ad Ivanović (BP #5). First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand winner deep into the corner. Deuce #5. Daniela dispatched a short ball with an off-backhand dropshot-winner. Ad Hantuchová (GP #1). Daniela hit a backhand long on the third stroke. Deuce #6. Ivanović hit a crosscourt forehand return deep into the corner, forcing Daniela to net a forehand. Ad Ivanović (BP #6). Daniela hit a short-angled crosscourt backhand winner. Deuce #7. Daniela’s depth forced Ivanović to net a forehand; Ivanović jumped. Ad Hantuchová (GP #2). Daniela went to the net behind a crosscourt backhand, forcing Ivanović to net a backhand. Held.

Ivanović serving 3-4: Daniela netted a backhand. 15/0. Daniela went to the net, forcing Ivanović to net a backhand. 15/15. Daniela hit a crosscourt forehand volley-winner just inside the sideline. 15/30. Daniela’s short-angled crosscourt forehand forced Ivanović to net a forehand. 15/40 (BP #1). Ivanović hit a backhand volley-winner down the line. 30/40 (BP #2). Daniela forced a short ball, dispatched it with a crosscourt forehand winner, and said “c’mon”. Broken.

Hantuchová serving 5-3: Second serve out wide: Ivanović hit a down-the-line forehand return-winner,and said “ajde”. 0/15. First serve out wide + off-backhand winner down the line. 15/15. Ivanović hit a backhand just long. 30/15. First serve out wide forced Ivanović to hit an off-backhand return wide. 40/15 (SP #1 for Hantuchová). Deep first serve out wide, just inside the service-line, forced Ivanović to hit a forehand return long. Hantuchová won the second set 6-3 at 14:02 BST (second set 50m, match so far 1h52m).


Third set
---------
HANTUCHO _*_*@*@* 6
IVANOVIĆ *_*_____ 2

Due to persistent drizzle, they took an extended set-break from 14:02 to 14:08 BST (6m).

Ivanović serving 0-0: Ace #13: first serve out wide. 15/0. Daniela hit a backhand very long. 30/0. Second serve... Ivanović’s deep crosscourt backhand forced Daniela to earth a backhand. 40/0 (GP #1). Double fault #7 (second serve long). Ace #14: second serve down the middle. Held.

The rain got heavier. The players sat down. Daniela left the court. The match was suspended due to rain at 14:13 BST, and resumed at 15:01 BST (48m).

Hantuchová serving 0-1: Ace #3: first serve out wide. 15/0. Ivanović hit a deep backhand return down the line, forcing Daniela to net a forehand. 15/15. First serve out wide: forehand return just long. 30/15. First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand winner deep into the corner + “c’mon”. 40/15 (GP #1). Second serve out wide: Ivanović netted a forehand return. Held.

Ivanović serving 1-1: First serve out wide: Daniela netted a forehand return. 15/0. Ivanović’s deep crosscourt forehand forced Daniela to hit an off-forehand wide. 30/0. Daniela, on the fourth stroke, hit an off-backhand dropshot-winner. 30/15. Daniela netted a backhand; Ivanović said “ajde”. 40/15 (GP #1). Daniela’s deep backhand return forced Ivanović to hit a backhand long. 40/30 (GP #2). Daniela mishit an off-forehand return: it turned into a dropshot-winner. Deuce #1. Ace #15: first serve down the middle, on the centre-line and the service-line. Ad Ivanović (GP #3). Ivanović’s depth forced Daniela to hit a backhand long. Held.

Ivanović said “ajde” twice, but she would not win another game.

Hantuchová serving 1-2 (new balls): Ivanović hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 15/0. First serve out wide forced Ivanović to net a backhand return. 30/0. Daniela, on the third stroke, dumped a backhand into the net. 30/15. Daniela hit an off-forehand just wide. 30/30. First serve out wide forced Ivanović to net a forehand return. 40/30 (GP #1). Daniela went to the net, but Ivanović hit a crosscourt forehand pass-winner. Deuce #1. Double fault #2 (second serve long). Ad Ivanović (BP #1). Ace #4: second serve out wide. Daniela said “c’mon”. Deuce #2. Ivanović forced a short ball, dispatched it with an off-forehand winner, and said “ajde”. Ad Ivanović (BP #2). First serve forced a floater, which Daniela dispatched with a crosscourt forehand drive-volley winner. Deuce #3. First serve out wide forced Ivanović to net a forehand return. Ad Hantuchová (GP #2). First serve down the middle forced Ivanović to net a backhand (forehand?) return. Held.

Ivanović serving 2-2: First serve out wide: forehand return long. 15/0. Second serve... Ivanović netted a backhand on the third stroke. 15/15. Daniela hit a deep forehand return down the line, forcing Ivanović to hit a backhand long. 15/30. Double fault #8 (second serve just wide of the centre-line). 15/40 (BP #1). Ace #16: first serve down the middle, on the service-line. 30/40 (BP #2). Second serve... on the third stroke, Ivanović netted a sliced backhand. Broken.

Hantuchová serving 3-2: Daniela hit a deep forehand down the line, forcing Ivanović to net a backhand. 15/0. Daniela thought she’d won the point with a crosscourt forehand, and said “c’mon”, but Ivanović squeezed a down-the-line forehand winner onto the baseline, and said “ajde”. 15/15. Ivanović hit a deep forehand return just inside the baseline, forcing Daniela to net a forehand; Ivanović said “ajde” again. 15/30. With more raindrops falling, Daniela hit a backhand dropshot to draw Ivanović to the net, and passed her with a crosscourt backhand winner. 30/30. Ivanović said “ajde” after hitting a backhand return, but it was long. 40/30 (GP #1). Daniela’s depth forced Ivanović to hit a very short backhand lob down the line, which Daniela dispatched with an easy crosscourt forehand smash-winner. Held.

Ivanović serving 2-4: Daniela’s deep crosscourt forehand return forced Ivanović to net a forehand. 0/15. Daniela forced a short ball, and dispatched it with a down-the-line forehand winner. 0/30. Ivanović netted a forehand volley. 0/40 (BP #1). Double fault #9: second serve into the net. Broken.

Hantuchová serving 5-2: First serve down the middle: backhand return long. 15/0. Virtual ace: first serve out wide. 30/0. First serve out wide: forehand return very long. 40/0 (MP #1 for Hantuchová). First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand volley-winner. Hantuchová won 6-7 6-3 6-2 at 15:28 BST (third set 1h26m gross, 38m net; match 3h18m gross, 2h30m net).

Daniela’s on-court interview: “Yeah, it was [tough]. After the first set, I tried to focus on my game, stay aggressive. Yeah, I am [motivated]. One step to go.”

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3. Semi-final eyewitness report: Lisicki v Péng (Saturday 11th June 2011)
-----------------------------------------------

+ Sabine Lisicki [DF] d. PÉNG,SHUŔI [3], 6-3 6-1

Sabine was delightful to watch in this match, as she dismantled the third seed with an array of huge serves, powerful groundstrokes and frequent dropshots, and did it with a huge smile on her face.

Sabine had a nasty-looking fall onto her back at the start of her first service-game, went 0:0 *0-1 (15/40) down, but Péng failed to press home her advantage.

At 0:0 *1-2, Sabine held to love with a pinpoint forehand winner down the line, an ace down the middle, and a backhand dropshot-winner.

Sabine then broke for 0:0 *3-2 after a game of three deuces in which she hit two backhand dropshot-winners, a crosscourt backhand winner, a dropshot + backhand lob-winner onto the baseline, and a brilliant off-backhand winner onto the baseline. She then held to love with three consecutive aces.

Péng recovered from *2-4 (15/40), and held for 3-4* with a forehand smash-winner, but Sabine held for 5-3* with an ace and a forehand smash-winner, and Péng played a poor service-game to be broken to love for the first set.

Péng held for 0:1 1-1* with a forehand smash-winner, an off-forehand winner and a pinpoint ace out wide, but it was to be the last game that she would win.

In a game of four deuces, Sabine broke for 1:0 *3-1 with four forehand winners, plus two passing shots (one on each flank). She held for 4-1* with a pinpoint backhand winner down the line, a huge crosscourt forehand winner, and two aces down the middle.

An erratic Péng service-game left Sabine serving for the match at 1:0 *5-1, and she duly obliged with an ace down the middle, and, despite being attacked by a bee at match-point, a crosscourt backhand winner. She was delighted to win, and sounded very excited in her on-court interview.

When Sabine won Charleston 2009 (beating Venus Williams and Caroline Woźniacki) and reached the quarter-finals of Wimbledon 2009 (beating Svetlana Kuznetsova and Woźniacki again), I thought that her potential was sky-high: to be world #1, a Major champion, possibly even the next member of my Eternal Fanship.

Her terrible ankle-injury at Indian Wells 2010 set her back so far that I thought she had lost the potential to be any of those things, but on the evidence of Birmingham 2011, she’s not only back; she’s better than before.


First set
---------
LISI _*_*@*_*@ 6
PÉNG *_*___*__ 3

The match was second on Centre Court. Péng won the toss and elected to serve. The warm-up was interrupted by a brief shower (15:39 to 15:44 BST); the match started at 15:49 BST.

Péng serving 0-0: First serve: Sabine hit a deep forehand return down the line, forcing Péng to net a backhand. 0/15. Second serve... Sabine sprayed a forehand drive-volley long. 15/15. Forehand return long. 30/15. Péng’s depth forced Sabine to net a forehand. 40/15 (GP #1). Sabine’s crosscourt backhand dropshot clipped the netcord and fell back on her side. Held.

Lisicki serving 0-1: Péng hit a crosscourt forehand winner as Sabine fell on her back. Sabine got up and washed her hands. 0/15. Sabine hit a forehand just long. 0/30. First serve out wide + off-backhand forced Péng to hit a forehand long. 15/30. A low-bouncing ball from Péng forced Sabine to net a forehand. 15/40 (BP #1). Deep second serve out wide, just inside the service-line, forced Péng to hit a forehand return long. 30/40 (BP #2). Péng hit an off-backhand wide. Deuce #1. Sabine hit a pinpoint backhand winner down the line. Ad Lisicki (GP #1). First serve out wide + deep off-forehand forced Péng to hit a defensive backhand lob long. Held.

Péng serving 1-1: First serve down the middle forced Sabine to net a backhand return. 15/0. Sabine hit a pinpoint crosscourt forehand winner just inside the sideline. 15/15. Second serve... Sabine hit a crosscourt forehand wide on the fourth stroke. 30/15. First serve out wide forced Sabine to net a backhand return. 40/15 (GP #1). Second serve: Sabine blasted a huge crosscourt forehand return-winner deep into the corner, and said “c’mon”. 40/30 (GP #2). Péng hit a crosscourt backhand winner back behind Sabine. Held.

Lisicki serving 1-2: First serve out wide + pinpoint forehand winner down the line. 15/0. Ace #1: first serve down the middle. 30/0. First serve out wide forced Péng to hit a forehand return wide. 40/0 (GP #1). First serve down the middle + crosscourt backhand dropshot-winner. Held.

Péng serving 2-2: Sabine hit an off-backhand return + crosscourt backhand droshot-winner. 0/15. Sabine hit a crosscourt backhand wide. 15/15. First serve out wide forced Sabine to net a forehand return. 30/15. Second serve: Sabine hit a deep backhand return down the line + backhand dropshot-winner. 30/30. Sabine hit an off-backhand + crosscourt backhand winner. 30/40 (BP #1). Second serve: Sabine netted a backhand return. Deuce #1. Sabine’s crosscourt forehand return forced Péng to net a forehand. Ad Lisicki (BP #2). Péng spread Sabine with a crosscourt forehand + deep crosscourt backhand, forcing her to net a backhand; Sabine emitted a high-pitched yell. Deuce #2. Second serve: backhand return long. Ad Péng (GP #1). Second serve... Sabine drew Péng to the net with a dropshot, and hit a backhand lob-winner onto the baseline. Deuce #3. First serve out wide forced Sabine to net a forehand. Ad Péng (GP #2). Péng hit a backhand long on the third stroke. Deuce #4. Sabine hit a brilliant off-backhand winner onto the baseline, and said “c’mon”. Ad Lisicki (BP #3). Double fault #1: second serve long. Broken.

Lisicki serving 3-2: Ace #2: first serve down the middle. 15/0. Ace #3: first serve down the middle. 30/0. Ace #4: first serve down the middle. 40/0 (GP #1). Péng hit an off-backhand wide. Held.

Péng serving 2-4: First serve out wide forced Sabine to net a forehand return. 15/0. First serve: Sabine’s deep forehand return forced Péng to net a backhand. 15/15. Sabine hit an off-backhand winner onto the sideline. 15/30. Second serve: Sabine hit a deep backhand return down the line, forcing Péng to net a forehand. 15/40 (BP #1). Second serve: Sabine netted a makeable forehand return. 30/40 (BP #2). Péng forced a short ball, and hit a deep forehand down the line, forcing Sabine to hit a backhand long. Deuce #1. A deep, low-bouncing ball from Sabine forced Péng to sink to her haunches and net a forehand. Ad Lisicki (BP #3). Deep first serve: backhand return just long. Deuce #2. Péng hit a deep forehand down the line, forcing Sabine to hit a crosscourt backhand wide. Ad Péng (GP #1). Péng forced a floater, and dispatched it with an off-forehand smash-winner. Held.

Lisicki serving 4-3 (new balls): Ace #5: first serve out wide. 15/0. First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand volley forced a floater, which Sabine dispatched with a pinpoint off-forehand smash-winner onto the sideline. 30/0. Sabine had something in her eye. Second serve out wide forced Péng to hit an off-backhand return wide. 30/15. First serve out wide: backhand return long. 40/15 (GP #1). Péng forced a floater, and dispatched it with an off-forehand winner. 40/30 (GP #2). First serve out wide: backhand return long. Sabine said “c’mon”. Held.

Péng serving 3-5: Péng hit an off-backhand just wide. 0/15. Double fault #2: second serve just long. 0/30. Sabine hit a crosscourt forehand deep into the corner, forcing Péng to net a forehand. 0/40 (SP #1 for Lisicki). Péng, on the third stroke, hit a backhand long. Lisicki won the first set 6-3 at 16:24 BST (35m).


Second set
----------
LISI *_*@*@* 6
PÉNG _*_____ 1

Lisicki serving 0-0: Péng hit a forehand long. 15/0. Service-winner. 30/0. Service-winner. 40/0 (GP #1). Short second serve: forehand return long. Held.

Péng serving 0-1: Péng forced a floater, and dispatched it with an off-forehand smash-winner. 15/0. Backhand return long. 30/0. Péng hit an off-forehand winner onto the sideline. 40/0 (GP #1). Second serve: Péng hit a pinpoint backhand return-winner down the line. 40/15 (GP #2). Péng hit a crosscourt forehand return long and wide. 40/30 (GP #3). Ace #1: first serve out wide, just inside both the sideline and the service-line. Held.

Lisicki serving 1-1: Péng went to the net, forcing Sabine to hit an off-backhand wide. Sabine emitted a high-pitched yell. 0/15. Péng netted a backhand. 15/15. First serve out wide + crosscourt backhand wide. 30/15. Second serve... a deep, low-bouncing ball from Péng forced Sabine to net a sliced backhand. 30/30. Deep first serve: backhand return long. 30/40 (BP #1). Sabine returned Péng’s deep crosscourt backhand with a deep backhand of her own, forcing Péng to net a forehand. Held.

Péng serving 1-2: Sabine hit a forehand winner down the line. 0/15. Péng hit an off-backhand winner. 15/15. Sabine’s crosscourt forehand forced a short ball, which she dispatched with an off-forehand winner. 15/30. Péng’s crosscourt forehand forced Sabine to net a forehand. 30/30. Péng hit a deep off-forehand just inside the sideline, forcing Sabine to earth a backhand. 40/30 (GP #1). Sabine’s deep off-forehand forced Péng to hit a backhand very long. Deuce #1. Second serve... Péng hit a crosscourt forehand dropshot, but Sabine hit a down-the-line forehand winner. Ad Lisicki (BP #1). Sabine’s short-angled crosscourt forehand enabled Péng to hit a down-the-line forehand winner. Deuce #2. Péng forced a short floater, and dispatched it with a crosscourt forehand smash-winner. Ad Péng (GP #2). First serve out wide forced Sabine to hit an off-forehand winner. Deuce #3. Backhand return long. Ad Péng (GP #3). Péng hit a forehand just long on the third stroke. Deuce #4. Péng went to the net behind a down-the-line backhand dropshot, but Sabine ran it down and hit a forehand pass-winner down the line: just inside the sideline. Ad Lisicki (BP #2). Sabine drew Péng to the net with a down-the-line backhand dropshot, and hit a crosscourt backhand pass-winner. Sabine pumped her fist. Broken.

Lisicki serving 3-1: Double fault #1 (second serve into the net). 0/15. First serve out wide + pinpoint down-the-line backhand winner + “c’mon”. 15/15. Double fault #2 (second serve just long). 15/30. Sabine’s down-the-line forehand set up a huge crosscourt forehand winner; she said “komm jetzt”. 30/30. Ace #6: first serve down the middle. 40/30 (GP #1). Ace #7: first serve down the middle, on the centre-line. Held.

Péng serving 1-4: Double fault #3 (second serve long and wide). 0/15. Sabine hit a forehand just long. 15/15. Péng hit a forehand long on the third stroke. 15/30. Sabine hit a backhand long. 30/30. First serve out wide forced Sabine to net a forehand return. 40/30 (GP #1). Péng hit an off-forehand wide. Deuce #1. Sabine hit an off-backhand just inside the sideline, forcing Péng to hit a forehand long; Sabine said “c’mon”. Ad Lisicki (BP #1). Sabine went to the net, forcing Péng to net a forehand. Sabine pumped her fist, and shouted “oh yes!” Broken.

Lisicki serving 5-1: Ace #8: first serve down the middle. 15/0. First serve down the middle forced Péng to hit a crosscourt forehand return wide. 30/0. Péng’s off-backhand return forced Sabine to net a forehand dropshot. 30/15. Service-winner. 40/15 (MP #1 for Lisicki). Sabine was attacked by a bee. Second serve out wide + crosscourt backhand winner. Sabine emitted a high-pitched “yes!”, and sank to her haunches. Lisicki won 6-3 6-1 at 16:52 BST (second set 28m, match 1h03m).

Sabine’s on-court interview: “I know, it’s weird! [that there were no tiebreaks this time]. My nickname in German means ‘bee’ [Biene?]. I played really well, and served consistently. She serves very well, and hits flat and hard groundstrokes. I remember I played Sam Stosur in the first round [of Birmingham 2008]. Yes, I did [play Daniela Hantuchová]. Let’s not! [talk about their previous encounter: Daniela won 6-0 6-2 at Luxembourg 2008]. She plays great; she kicked my butt; she hit everything on the lines; there was nothing I could do. Anything is possible, so I’m going to go out there, have fun and fight.”

--
Dr. Andrew Broad

andrewbroad
Dec 31st, 2011, 11:01 PM
=============
AEGON CLASSIC (Edgbaston, Birmingham, England; grass; WTA International)
=============
Contents
--------

1. Photos
2. Final eyewitness report: Lisicki v Hantuchová

---------
1. Photos (Monday 13th June 2011)
---------

Permission to copy my Birmingham photos is granted provided that:
(a) no money is exchanged;
(b) they are labelled as “Copyright Andrew Broad 2011”.
Please let me know if you do use them on another website.

Since I don’t have time to upload hundreds of photos a day individually, I have uploaded each batch of photos as a large zip-file (approximately as many megabytes as photos).

Monday’s photos are in two volumes.


Monday Part 1 (Photos 001 to 196)
-------------

http://www.divshare.com/download/16490735-1ca

Daniela Hantuchová (136 photos)
Sabine Lisicki (95)

Part 1 features the final, and stops just before the presentation ceremony.

Photo 041 is a funny one: Daniela’s hood flew up, completely covering her face!


Monday Part 2 (Photos 197 to 261)
-------------

http://www.divshare.com/download/16490805-831

Sabine Lisicki (55 photos)
Daniela Hantuchová (13)

Part 2 features both players at the presentation ceremony (Photos 197–211), Sabine posing with the trophy (Photos 212–235), and Sabine signing autographs just outside Centre Court (Photos 236–257).

I got some wonderful photos of Sabine as she posed on court with the trophy, and her habit of changing into different shoes before she leaves the court told me exactly when it was time to whip round and get some close-ups as she signed autographs just outside Centre Court.

If I could keep only one photo by which to remember Sabine, it would be Photo 244.

------------------------------------------------
2. Final eyewitness report: Lisicki v Hantuchová (Monday 13th June 2011)
------------------------------------------------

+ Sabine Lisicki [DF] d. DANIELA HANTUCHOVÁ [4,EF], 6-3 6-2

It rained all day on Sunday, so the final was rescheduled for 11:00 BST on Monday.

It was a disappointing match, as Daniela was hampered by a right-shoulder injury for which she took a medical time-out at 0:1 2-3*, and revealed in her runner’s-up speech that it had been bothering her all week. She never really got going against Sabine, who was the strongest player in the tournament.

Sabine served like a Williams sister, with eight aces (all in the first set) and numerous easy service-games. She also showed tremendous groundstrokes – particularly her returns of serve – and mixed it up with plenty of dropshots. On this form, she would be a major threat to anyone at Wimbledon (where she upset Lǐ,Nŕ in what was surely the greatest second-round match of all time, became the 13th member of my Eternal Fanship, and went on to reach her first Major semi-final).

Sabine was coming back from a terrible left-ankle injury suffered at Indian Wells 2010, which saw her ranking drop from a career-high of #22 to #218 as of Indian Wells 2011. This victory moved her back up from #100 to #62 (she would finish 2011 at #15), but in reality, she was playing like a top-eight player on grass, even though she has to wear big, ugly braces on both ankles.

With Sabine serving first, the first three games went comfortably with serve, then Daniela recovered from 0:0 *1-2 0/30 to 40/30, only to be broken anyway as she netted a dropshot, double-faulted, and succumbed to one of Sabine’s trademark dropshots.

Daniela went 0:0 *1-4 0/30 down, but recovered with a pinpoint off-forehand winner, a beautiful crosscourt backhand punch-volley winner, and an ace out wide: 2-4*.

Sabine led 0:0 *4-2 40/0, but Daniela pegged her back to Deuce, reached break-point with a crosscourt forehand return-winner, but couldn’t press home her advantage: Sabine held for 5-2*.

Daniela hit a crosscourt forehand winner as she held to 15 for 0:0 3-5*, but Sabine served out the first set to love with two forehand winners down the line, and an ace out wide at set-point: 6-3.

Daniela trailed 0:1 *0-0 0/40, but recovered with two crosscourt forehand winners, a good spreading rally and some good first serves: 1-0*. Sabine went off the boil and was taken to Deuce, but Daniela couldn’t take advantage.

And so it came to pass (a crosscourt backhand pass to be precise) that Daniela found herself down 0:1 *2-2 0/40. She saved those three break-points by good serving, but Sabine broke anyway with a crosscourt backhand return-winner: *3-2.

After the aforementioned medical time-out at 0:1 2-3*, Daniela offered little resistance as Sabine held to love and broke to 15, finishing both games with crosscourt forehand winners: *5-2. Sabine served out the match to love with three dropshot-winners – the third being a dead netcord at championship-point. Sabine won the last eight points of the tournament, and 14 of the last 15.

Sabine was very emotional in victory, falling to her knees to kiss the court, and celebrating with her amazing smile. She was shaking in her champion’s speech, and crying as she recalled how tough it had been to come back from the ankle-injury.

When Sabine won Charleston 2009 (beating Venus Williams and Caroline Woźniacki) and reached the quarter-finals of Wimbledon 2009 (beating Svetlana Kuznetsova and Woźniacki again), I thought that her potential was sky-high: to be world #1, a Major champion, possibly even the next member of my Eternal Fanship.

Her ankle-injury set her back so far that I thought she had lost the potential to be any of those things, but on the evidence of Birmingham 2011, she’s not only back; she’s better than before.


First set
---------
LISICKI *_*@*_*_* 6
HANTUCH _*___*_*_ 3

The match was first on Centre Court, and suffered a further delay as there was a long queue for buying tickets. Daniela won the toss and elected to receive, and the match finally started at 11:33 BST.

Lisicki serving 0-0: First serve down the middle forced Daniela to hit a backhand lob-return wide. 15/0. Ace #1: first serve down the middle. 30/0. First serve out wide, deep in the corner, forced Daniela to net a forehand return. 40/0 (GP #1). Ace #2: first serve out wide. Held.

Hantuchová serving 0-1: Daniela hit an off-backhand wide. 0/15. Second serve: forehand return long. 15/15. Daniela hit a crosscourt forehand winner back behind Sabine. 30/15. First serve: Sabine netted a forehand return. 40/15 (GP #1). First serve out wide + forehand drop-volley winner just over the net. Held.

Lisicki serving 1-1: Daniela forced a short ball, but hit an off-forehand wide. 15/0. Ace #3: first serve down the middle. Sabine said “komm jetzt”. 30/0. Ace #4: first serve out wide. 40/0 (GP #1). First serve: Daniela hit a deep forehand return just inside the baseline, forcing Sabine to hit a crosscourt forehand wide. 40/15 (GP #2). Sabine hit a crosscourt forehand just inside the sideline, forcing Daniela to hit a forehand long. Held.

Hantuchová serving 1-2: Daniela forced a short ball, only to hit a backhand long. 0/15. Daniela hit a crosscourt forehand just wide. 0/30. Second serve: forehand return long. 15/30. Second serve out wide: backhand return long. 30/30. Sabine ran down a dropshot, but hit a crosscourt forehand pass wide. 40/30 (GP #1). Daniela netted a backhand dropshot on the third stroke. Deuce #1. Double fault #1 (second serve just long). Ad Lisicki (BP #1). Second serve... Sabine, on the fourth stroke, hit a backhand dropshot-winner down the line. Broken.

Lisicki serving 3-1: Daniela opened up the court to hit a crosscourt forehand winner. 0/15. Daniela ran down a dropshot, but sprayed a crosscourt forehand wide. 15/15. Ace #5: first serve out wide. Sabine said “c’mon”. 30/15. Double fault #1 (second serve into the net). 30/30. Second serve: forehand return just long. Sabine said “c’mon”. 40/30 (GP #1). Sabine dominated the rally and hit a down-the-line forehand winner. Held.

Hantuchová serving 1-4: Daniela netted a forehand. 0/15. Second serve... on the third stroke, Daniela hit a backhand long. 0/30. Daniela forced a short ball, and hit a pinpoint off-forehand winner just inside the sideline. 15/30. Second serve... Sabine hit a crosscourt backhand wide on the fourth stroke. 30/30. Daniela went to the net behind a down-the-line backhand, and hit a beautiful crosscourt backhand punch-volley winner. 40/30 (GP #1). Ace #1: first serve out wide, on the centre-line and just inside the service-line. Held.

Lisicki serving 4-2: Ace #6: first serve out wide. Sabine said “c’mon”. 15/0. First serve: Daniela netted a backhand return. 30/0. Second serve out wide + crosscourt backhand winner. 40/0 (GP #1). Sabine netted a backhand on the fourth stroke. 40/15 (GP #2). Double fault #2 (second serve into the net). 40/30 (GP #3). Daniela’s down-the-line backhand return induced Sabine to net a forehand. Deuce #1. Second serve: Daniela hit a crosscourt forehand return-winner. Ad Hantuchová (BP #1). Sabine’s deep crosscourt backhand forced Daniela to hit a crosscourt backhand wide and just long. Deuce #2. Daniela hit a crosscourt backhand wide on the fourth stroke. Ad Lisicki (GP #4). Ace #7: first serve out wide, on the sideline. Sabine shouted “c’mon”. Held.

Sabine replaced her racket.

Hantuchová serving 2-5 (new balls): Second serve: forehand return long. 15/0. Forehand return just long. 30/0. Second serve... Daniela, on the third stroke, hit a crosscourt forehand winner back behind Sabine. 40/0 (GP #1). Daniela netted a forehand on the third stroke. 40/15 (GP #2). Sabine earthed a forehand dropshot, and emitted a cute little high-pitched yell. Held.

Lisicki serving 5-3: Sabine, on the third stroke, hit a down-the-line forehand winner. 15/0. Sabine hit a low-bouncing forehand winner down the line. 30/0. First serve: forehand return long. 40/0 (SP #1 for Lisicki). Ace #8: first serve out wide. Lisicki won the first set 6-3 at 12:08 BST (35m).

Daniela got her coach Matej Lipták to come onto court and talk to her at the set-break.


Second set
----------
LISICKI _*_*@*@* 6
HANTUCH *_*_____ 2

Hantuchová serving 0-0: Double fault #3 (second serve clipped the netcord and fell long). 0/15. Second serve: Sabine hit a down-the-line backhand return-winner, and said “c’mon”. 0/30. Second serve: Sabine’s deep off-backhand return forced Daniela to earth a forehand. 0/40 (BP #1). First serve + crosscourt forehand winner. 15/40 (BP #2). Service-winner. 30/40 (BP #3). Second serve... Daniela played a good spreading rally, and hit a deep forehand just inside the baseline, forcing Sabine to hit a forehand long. Deuce #1. Daniela hit a crosscourt forehand winner that clipped the baseline with a puff of titanium pigment. Ad Hantuchová (GP #1). First serve: forehand return long. Held.

Lisicki serving 0-1: Daniela’s off-backhand return forced Sabine to hit a crosscourt forehand wide. 0/15. Second serve: backhand return long. 15/15. Sabine hit a forehand long. 15/30. Daniela hit a crosscourt backhand wide on the fourth stroke. 30/30. Daniela hit an off-backhand wide. 40/30 (GP #1). Double fault #3 (second serve just long). Deuce #1. First serve out wide + off-backhand winner back behind Daniela + “c’mon”. Ad Lisicki (GP #2). Off-forehand return wide. Held.

Hantuchová serving 1-1: Sabine netted a forehand return. 15/0. Second serve: Sabine netted a backhand return. 30/0. Sabine hit a down-the-line forehand winner, and said “c’mon”. 30/15. First serve out wide: crosscourt backhand return wide. 40/15 (GP #1). First serve out wide: down-the-line forehand return wide. Held.

Lisicki serving 1-2: Second serve: down-the-line forehand return wide. 15/0. Sabine hit a crosscourt forehand dropshot-winner from the baseline – it was ‘telegraphed’, but Daniela didn’t read it. 30/0. First serve: Daniela hit a makeable forehand return long. 40/0 (GP #1). First serve... Daniela hit a high forehand volley-winner in a diagonal direction – I can’t remember which. 40/15 (GP #2). Daniela opened up the court with a crosscourt forehand, but hit an off-forehand wide. Held.

Hantuchová serving 2-2: Daniela hit a forehand long on the third (or possibly fifth) stroke. 0/15. Second serve... Daniela hit a forehand long on the third stroke. 0/30. Daniela went to the net, but Sabine hit a crosscourt backhand pass-winner, pumped her fist and said “c’mon”. 0/40 (BP #1). First serve out wide forced Sabine to earth a backhand return. 15/40 (BP #2). First serve + crosscourt forehand deep into the corner forced Sabine to earth a forehand. 30/40 (BP #3). Second serve down the middle forced Sabine to stretch wide and net a forehand return. Deuce #1. Daniela netted a forehand on the third stroke. Ad Lisicki (BP #4). Second serve: Sabine hit a crosscourt backhand return-winner, and said “c’mon”. Broken.

Daniela took a medical time-out for her right shoulder, while Sabine got her coach – her father Dr Richard Lisicki – to come onto court and talk to her at the changeover. Sabine then hit some practice-serves while she was waiting for Daniela. The break in play was from 12:33 to 12:41 BST (7m).

Lisicki serving 3-2: Daniela netted a backhand. 15/0. First serve forced Daniela to hit a crosscourt forehand return wide. 30/0. Second serve: crosscourt forehand return wide. 40/0 (GP #1). Second serve out wide forced a short crosscourt backhand return, which Sabine dispatched with a crosscourt forehand winner. Sabine said “komm jetzt”. Held.

Hantuchová serving 2-4: First serve out wide: Sabine netted a makeable forehand return. 15/0. Sabine hit a crosscourt forehand deep into the corner, forcing Daniela to hit a forehand long. 15/15. Daniela ran down a dropshot, only to hit an off-forehand wide. 15/30. Daniela netted a forehand on the third stroke. 15/40 (BP #1). Second serve... Sabine hit a crosscourt forehand winner back behind Daniela. Broken.

Lisicki serving 5-2 (new balls): First serve out wide + crosscourt forehand dropshot-winner. 15/0. Second serve... Sabine hit a deep crosscourt forehand + forehand dropshot-winner. 30/0. First serve out wide: Daniela chopped a crosscourt forehand return wide. 40/0 (MP #1 for Lisicki). Sabine’s forehand clipped the netcord and dropped dead for a winner. Lisicki won 6-3 6-2 at 12:47 BST (second set 39m, match 1h14m).


Presentation ceremony
---------------------

Daniela’s speech: “Sabine had a great week, and played well today. She has a great serve. We had a wonderful time. It’s great to be back. Obviously always tough, the adrenalin going. It’s [her right shoulder] been bothering me all week, but hopefully, with treatment, it will get better.”

Sabine’s speech: “I wouldn’t say it was easy. Daniela is a very tough opponent... good and healthy for Wimbledon. I’m shaking, actually. I never thought I’d be standing here today. Coming back from the injury was so, so tough [crying]. I want to thank the sponsors. It’s been a great week. I thank my team for supporting me through such a tough time on crutches. You know I don’t like alcohol.”

Catholic and teetotal – it doesn’t get much better than that!

--
Dr. Andrew Broad