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KirilenkoRulz Jan 12th, 2006 01:22 PM

Melbourne, Australia - 2006 Australian Open
Makiri's third tournament of 2006 is the Melbourne, Australia - Australian Open, starting on 16 January and playing for two weeks ending on 29 January. It is the first of the Grand Slams and is played outdoors on hardcourt. In a battle of two Americans Serena Williams beat Lindsay Davenport for the title last year. There is $19.3M of prize money to be given out across all of the draws. The main womens singles draw of 128 women will have 32 seeds placed, Makiri as #25 in the world surely will gain a seeded position. The top seeds will likely follow the 9 January WTA rankings. Makiri will play two matches against non-seeded opponents and will not play a seeded player until at least the third round. The main womens doubles draw will be 64 teams. As Gisela Dulko will also be at this tournament, if she is heathy we may see the first appearance of the year for Team Dulkolenko. The main draw is to be announced today (Friday, 13 Jan in Melbourne right now). Qualifying rounds started yesterday, so the tournament is slowly gearing up.

Makiri travels to Melbourne from Sydney and will not be changing time zones. She lost in the second round in Sydney to Nadia Petrova, in straight sets and earned 25 ranking points. Melbourne is 8 hours later in the day than her home in Moscow. Makiri's singles record thus far in 2006 is 3-2, her doubles record is 0-1. She is ranked #25 in the 9 January WTA Rankings with 755.50 points, and will very likely maintain this ranking when the 16 Janauray list is made public. This will be the third week in a row Makiri has played.

KirilenkoRulz Jan 12th, 2006 02:14 PM

The Woman's seeds are announced, they match exactly with the 9 January WTA Ranking sheet from #1-27. Seems #28 Molik and #33 Martinez are not playing so from that point in they move up accordingly (ie Bepa Z is #31 ranked but #30 seeded) with #34 ranked Mizra getting the 32nd and final seed. Makiri is seeded #25.

From the Open website: "Maria Sharapova , seeded No.4, leads a strong Russian contingent of nine seeded players - Nadia Petrova (6), Elena Dementieva (9), 2004 Roland Garros champion Anastasia Myskina (12), 2004 US Open champion Svetlana Kuznetsova (14), Elena Likhovtseva (18), Dinara Safina (19), Maria Kirilenko (25) and Vera Zvonareva (30)."

Dementirilenko Jan 12th, 2006 06:38 PM

Well mow, Makiri is a seeded player at the Aussie Open. This is the first time in her career as far as I know. The draw will come out this weekend so that we can see who will be her first opponent. Let's hope that the heat in Australia will be no problem for her and that she can find a solid start into my favorite Tourney! Go Makiri!!

houseoflords Jan 12th, 2006 06:39 PM

Congrats to Maria on her first career Grand Slam seed. Good luck in the main draw Masha!

KirilenkoRulz Jan 12th, 2006 07:57 PM


Originally Posted by houseoflords
Congrats to Maria on her first career Grand Slam seed. Good luck in the main draw Masha!

I want to echo House, this is a major achievement by Makiri! It is another indication of her progress and growth as a tennis player. Congratualtions to her, and wishes for many great Grand Slam results over the upcoming years. After all the years of training and hard work she has earned this honor. Wishing Makiri all the best for a favorable draw and strong play, it would be sweet to go beyond the 3rd round at a Grand Slam (which she achieved at the USO in 2003). Today belongs to Makiri for her success in gaining her first Grand Slam seed!

KirilenkoRulz Jan 13th, 2006 01:54 AM

Oh man, I hope everyone has seen this already, I'd hate to be the bearer of bad news... which is that Lindsay Davenport will be Makiri's likely third round opponent at the Australian Open. Just can't seem to catch a break this year with the draws. Here is Makiri's first grouping of 8:

Lindsay Davenport (1) vs Casey Dellacqua
Alona Bondarenko vs Karolina Sprem
Emmanuelle Gagliardi (WTA Rank #82) vs Galina Voskoboeva (WTA #105)
Evgenia Linetskaya of Russia (WTA #63) vs Maria Kirilenko of Russia (25)

navyseals98 Jan 13th, 2006 02:25 AM

You never know, Maria could come out ready to play, while Davenport thinking it to be an easy match and just doesn't focus. Maria could pull the upset.

Zoltan83 Jan 13th, 2006 02:31 AM

Davenport in the third :(
But first she need to win her 2 first matches :D

KirilenkoRulz Jan 13th, 2006 02:40 AM


Originally Posted by navyseals98
You never know, Maria could come out ready to play, while Davenport thinking it to be an easy match and just doesn't focus. Maria could pull the upset.

Yes, I am sure if all goes to form and it is Makiri and Lindsay that most certainly Makiri will come to play. Need to enjoy the first two rounds prior to that however. But a peek ahead - Makiri has never played Lindsay, Lindsay is a huge and powerful player and 7 inches taller and 50 pounds heavier than Makiri. She plays bash ball, and it is not news that all other things being equal Makiri would prefer not to play a top tier power player. While Lindsay has had trouble winning a Grand Slam, over the past 5 years she has been extremely consistent in going very deep in the draw - she has advanced to the 4th round at every Grand Slam over the past 5 years. And except for a 1st round loss at the French in 2000, this 4th round or better streak goes on for several additional years. It does not seem Lindsay gets caught by surprise in the first three rounds at Grand Slams. But, I will hope and hope that if they play Makiri will come in confident and motivated, with a great game plan... how great would it be for her to beat Davenport, eh!

Andy. Jan 13th, 2006 08:15 AM

Well im pretty confident Maria can make it to the third round after that it will be a huge struggle but playing against Lindsay will be a good experience and more that she can put in the bank for experience.

Dementirilenko Jan 13th, 2006 08:32 AM

Man, thats a hard draw for Makiri. Linetskaya in the first round is a tough match! Could be not that easy for Queen Maria. And Lindsay in the third round....damn, this is not a lucky draw for someone who is seeded for the first time at a Grand Slam. Makiri doesn't deserve such a hard draw. But lets think optimistic and say that Makiri will get the Match against Lindsay. Ok, she will not have the best chances, but guyz...she can present herself, cause this Match will be shown on Tv all over the World, because Lindz is the World Number 1. Possibly the match will be played at Night at prime time. This is great for Makiri, she can show her talent to the world!

so.krist!na Jan 13th, 2006 10:08 AM

good luck against zhenya

KirilenkoRulz Jan 13th, 2006 01:39 PM


Originally Posted by Dementirilenko
this Match will be shown on Tv all over the World, because Lindz is the World Number 1. Possibly the match will be played at Night at prime time. This is great for Makiri, she can show her talent to the world!

Henry - For sure if it comes to a Makiri-Lindsay match it will be on US television, and I think ESPN has the Australian Open rights. ESPN loves Makiri, they showed her French 2004 match versus Williams several times, how I got to "know" Makiri two years ago.

King Aaron Jan 13th, 2006 03:28 PM

Let Masha reach the 3rd round first. ;) Then we can talk about Lindsay. Good luck Maria! :yeah:

KirilenkoRulz Jan 13th, 2006 06:26 PM

First round opponent - Evgenia Linetskaya: Makiri has never played her. She is from Russia (really don't like it when Makiri has to play other Russians), is 5' 9.5" (177 centimeters) and 132 pounds (60 kilograms) which makes her slightly taller and heavier than Makiri. She is 19 years old right now, but only about 2 months older than Makiri (reminder - Makiri turns 19 years old in 12 days, on 25 Jan). Her current WTA Ranking is 63, but she was as high as #35 just last summer. In other words, at the USO2005 Linetskaya was about 10 spots better than Makiri in the rankings. The good news is in the last 6 months Makiri has improved while Linetskaya has gone in reverse. The worrisome news is that at last year's Australian Open Linetskaya had three wins and a loss, i.e. she made it to the 4th round, a place Makiri has yet to visit in a Grand Slam. Evgenia has been quoted in the press saying she trained very hard in the off season and is determined to raise her ranking back to where it was. Her lifetime win-loss record is, well, very good. I don't know how Linetskaya plays style wise, but she and Makiri seem to be pretty close to each other in a lot of ways beyond the fact they are both Russians.

Winner (4 times): 1. 2004 ITF/Jackson-USA; 2. 2004 ITF/Bronx-USA; 3. 2003 - ITF/St.Petersburg-RUS; 4. 2002 - ITF/Minsk-BEL.
Semifinalist (twice): 2005 - Pattaya City; Memphis.
Quarterfinalist (twice): 2005 - Rome; 2004 - Tokyo Japan Open.

Win Loss Record - Singles 96-49.

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