BAUSCH & LOMB CHAMPIONSHIPS (Amelia Island, Florida, USA; green clay; WTA Tier II)
I found no photos of Bepa from Amelia Island, but I have
found some off-court ones from Miami:
McNeil Receives Mentor Appreciation Award
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First round (Tuesday 4th April)
+ Vera Zvonarëva d. Mariana Diaz-Oliva, 6-3 6-0
A very pleasing scoreline, especially after Bepa's poor results since reaching the Auckland final, although the 30-year-old Diaz-Oliva, ranked #74, is in a pretty bad slump herself, having won only two matches in eight tournaments this year.
Bepa led 3-0* despite 3 double faults. She committed her fourth and last DF as she was broken back en route to *3-3.
Bepa reeled off nine games in a row, including a long, deucy game with Diaz-Oliva serving at 3-4 (Bepa needed 4 break-points). She had to save break-point serving for the first set at 5-3, but the second set was of course much more straightforward.
Second round (Wednesday 5th April)
- Vera Zvonarëva lt. ANNA-LENA GRÖNEFELD , 6-3 6-4
We should not be too discouraged by this result, as Grönefeld is an up-and-coming player (aged 20 and ranked #16) with a big serve, who won her first WTA singles-title at Acapulco last month. Grönefeld looks like Bepa from a distance, but Bepa is much prettier.
The problem is that there are so many dangerous players on the tour these days, so Bepa has to raise her game even to get past the second round. At least she's started winning matches again, so this tournament is a small step in the right direction - along with Miami, where she lost to the eventual champion. So she has had two unlucky draws.
At Bol 2003, Bepa beat Grönefeld 2-6 6-3 7-6 (10/8) after saving a match-point - and of course she went on to win her first-ever WTA singles-title there, shortly before she knocked Venus Williams out of the French Open.
Bepa led 2-0* in the first set, then went *2-5 down, and saved two set-points (one with an ace) before making it 5-3*. She also had two separate chances to break back in the next game, with 0/30 and 30/40.
The only break in the second set was against Bepa at 3-6 *4-4 (on Grönefeld's only BP of the set - Bepa squandered 3 BPs earlier in the set). Grönefeld served Bepa out of the tournament after 1h21m.
: "Vera played okay but Anna served well and was hitting a lot of hard, flat groundies near the lines. Were some good rallies. No crying or racket throwing from Vera, a bit of acting out, not much. She took it well and left the court smiling."
Despite 6 aces, Bepa served poorly with only 53% of first serves in, 59% of points won on first serve and 46% of points won on second serve. She was broken 3 times whilst breaking Grönefeld only once (in the first set).
Bepa's serve often seems to be the barometer of her form - especially in these hot climates that are so bad for her energy since last year. She should do better once she comes to Europe.
Vera Zvonarëva/Meilen Tu:
1r - Anna-Lena Grönefeld/Nadia Petrova, 2-6 6-1 6-4
Looks like Bepa has fallen out with her regular doubles-partner, Elena Likhovtseva. They both played with different partners at this tournament.
Dr. Andrew Broad
http://geocities.com/andrewbroad/tennis/zvona/ (added 1 external link)