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Old Mar 29th, 2008, 06:46 PM   #1
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Birmingham 2007: Andrew's eyewitness reports & photos

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DFS CLASSIC (Edgbaston, Birmingham, England; grass; WTA Tier III)
=========== http://birmingham.lta.org.uk/
Contents
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1. Photos
2. Second-round eyewitness report: Bartoli v Cavaday
3. Third-round result
4. Quarter-final eyewitness report: Bartoli v Hantuchová
5. Semi-final eyewitness report: Sharapova v Bartoli

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1. Photos
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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 2007 Andrew Broad".
Please let me know if you do use them on another website.

I have uploaded all the photos I took at Birmingham 2007, in one big zip-file, to:
MON: http://www.divshare.com/download/1002277-6f8 (0 of Marion)
TUE: http://www.divshare.com/download/1012525-599 (0 of Marion)
WED: http://www.divshare.com/download/1031004-107 (6 of Marion)
THU: no play due to rain
FRI: http://www.divshare.com/download/1043659-219 (6 of Marion)
SAT: http://www.divshare.com/download/1049942-b32 (28 of Marion)
SUN: http://www.divshare.com/download/1917585-f12 (21 of Marion)

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2. Second-round eyewitness report: Bartoli v Cavaday
(Wednesday 13th June 2007)
----------------------------------------------------

+ MARION BARTOLI [5,S] d. Naomi Cavaday [WC], 6-3 6-1

Marion Bartoli has modelled her game faithfully on Monica Seles, except that she's right-handed and she doesn't grunt. Recently, she's taken to doing 'energy-bounces' before each serve, so I spent most of the match trying to photograph one with her feet off the ground! She also has a weird stance as she prepares to serve: she holds out her racket as though preparing for a fencing-duel, with the fingers on her (taped) right hand outstretched, then wraps them around her racket-handle.

Marion is not very mobile, but she hit some fantastic Selesian groundstrokes in this and other matches that I saw at Birmingham 2007.

Naomi Cavaday was a British wild card, and is left-handed.

The match was played on Centre Court, and started at 14:07.


First set
---------
BARTOLI @ @* * *@ 6
CAVADAY _@__* *__ 3

Cavaday serving 0-0: A long rally ended with Marion threading a pinpoint backhand pass-winner down the line. 0/15. Cavaday backhand winner down the line on the third stroke. 15/15. Double fault (second serve hit the netcord and fell long). 15/30. Cavaday netted a forehand. 15/40 (2 BPs). Marion broke with a crosscourt forehand winner.

Marion serving 1-0: Double fault (second serve into the net). 0/15. Marion netted a backhand. 0/30. Cavaday backhand long. 15/30. Cavaday exploited Marion's lack of mobility with a short-angled crosscourt forehand winner. 15/40 (2 BPs). Cavaday broke back with a forehand winner down the line - off a weak, high ball from Marion.

Cavaday serving 1-1: Double fault (second serve into the net). 0/15. Cavaday forehand wide. 0/30. Ace out wide. 15/30. Cavaday crosscourt forehand winner. 30/30. Marion netted a backhand return. 40/30. Cavaday forehand very long. 40/40. Cavaday netted a forehand. Ad Marion (BP). Marion earthed a backhand. Deuce #2. Cavaday forehand long. Ad Marion (BP #2). Cavaday hit a backhand just long to reinstate Marion's break.

Marion serving 2-1: Serve out wide + crosscourt backhand winner onto the sideline. 15/0. Marion came to the net behind a deep approach, forcing Cavaday to hit a forehand long. 30/0. Marion crosscourt backhand winner, just inside the sideline. 40/0. Marion backhand long. 40/15. Marion netted a backhand. 40/30. Cavaday forehand winner down the line. 40/40. Marion backhand volley-winner after some good retrieving by Cavaday. Ad Marion. Ace out wide.

Cavaday serving 1-3: Marion backhand winner down the line. 0/15. Cavaday hit an off-forehand winner that caught the outside edge of the sideline. 15/15. Cavaday forehand wide. 15/30. Cavaday forced a short ball, and hit a crosscourt forehand winner. 30/30. Cavaday forehand dead-netcord winner. 40/30. Marion's depth forced Cavaday to hit a backhand lob long. 40/40. Cavaday's forehand pass down the line forced Marion to earth a forehand volley. Ad Cavaday. She forced a short ball, and hit an off-backhand winner behind Marion.

Marion serving 3-2: A crosscourt forehand return on the sideline forced Marion to hit a forehand wide. 0/15. Cavaday netted a sliced forehand. 15/15. A low-bouncing return forced Marion to hit a backhand wide. 30/30. Marion's depth forced Cavaday to net a backhand. 40/30. Wild forehand return very long.

Cavaday serving 2-4: Cavaday forehand volley-winner. 15/0. Cavaday forehand winner down the line. 30/0. Marion crosscourt forehand return-winner. 30/15. Marion netted a forehand return. 40/15. Backhand return long.

Marion serving 4-3: Marion netted a forehand on the third stroke. 0/15. Marion crosscourt backhand + crosscourt forehand forced Cavaday to hit a forehand lob wide. 15/15. Cavaday netted a forehand return. 30/15. Ace out wide. 40/15. Ace out wide, ¾ up the sideline and just inside it.

Cavaday serving 3-5: Cavaday came to the net, but Marion took the initiative with a ball to Cavaday's feet, then hit a down-the-line backhand pass that forced Cavaday to hit a forehand volley wide. 0/15. Cavaday netted a forehand. 0/30. Marion crosscourt backhand dropshot-winner. 0/40 (3 SPs). Ace down the middle called long. Second serve: Marion hit a crosscourt backhand return-winner just inside the sideline. Marion won the first set 6-3 at 14:46 (39m).


Second set
----------
BARTOLI *@* *@* 6
CAVADAY ___*___ 1

Marion serving 0-0: A good serve forced a short return; Marion crosscourt forehand winner. 15/0. Cavaday netted a forehand. 30/0. Serve out wide + off-forehand winner. 40/0. Ace out wide.

Cavaday serving 0-1: Cavaday netted a backhand on the third stroke. 0/15. Cavaday netted a forehand. 0/30. A deep backhand return forced Cavaday to net a forehand. 0/40 (3 BPs). Cavaday hit a backhand very long to put Marion a set and a break up.

Marion serving 2-0: Cavaday netted a backhand return. 15/0. Ace out wide. 30/0. Service-winner: Cavaday backhand lob-return long. 40/0. Ace out wide, on the sideline.

Cavaday serving 0-3: Forehand return wide. 15/0. Cavaday hit a pinpoint forehand winner down the line, just inside the sideline. 30/0. Ace down the middle, just inside the centre-line. 40/0. Cavaday sprayed a forehand wide. 40/15. Cavaday forehand wide. 40/30. Cavaday hit a jousy forehand volley-winner onto the baseline.

Marion serving 3-1: Marion's forehand down the line forced Cavaday to earth a forehand. 15/0. Ace out wide, on the service-line. 30/0. Serve out wide + forehand winner down the line. 40/0. Ace out wide, in the corner. Raindrops?

Cavaday serving 1-4: Cavaday sprayed a backhand wide of the tramlines. 0/15. Cavaday forehand long & wide. 0/30. It was windy now, and Cavaday hit a forehand long. 0/40 (3 BPs). Marion crosscourt backhand return-winner.

Marion serving 5-1: Marion off-forehand winner. 15/0. Marion forehand very long. 15/15. Cavaday forehand long. 30/15. Cavaday backhand wide. 40/15. Service-winner down the middle: Cavaday's forehand return flew backwards into Stand D. Marion won 6-3 6-1 at 15:10 (second set 24m, match 1h03m).


Cavaday quotes
--------------

"There is a huge gap between players 16 to 20 in the world and those around the top 60. She was obviously a lot tougher than Bardina, and I didn't perform to my best, but there are a lot of positives I can take into my next couple of tournaments.

"The first set was competitive; even though I was not serving well, I thought I moved well, and the things I have been working on came into play out there. I definitely need the public to be patient with me now. There is no quick fix. I am relatively young in tennis-terms, and I have not got the experience that everyone else in the draw has."


http://birmingham.lta.org.uk/News/070613Stars.htm
>>>
After a promising first set, British No.4 Naomi Cavaday lost to No.5 seed Marion Bartoli (FRA) in the second round of the Birmingham tournament, 6-3 6-1. With her serve off the boil, Cavaday struggled against her opponent, ranked 223 places above her in the world, but was upbeat following the match.

"I think I ran well, moved well, a lot of things I've been working on I put into play today against such highly-ranked opposition, so I was really happy with that performance."

And the Brit paid tribute to a supportive centre-court crowd. "To have the opportunity to compete in this type of tournament is fantastic. Home-crowd, centre court, it was really great fun. I wasn't feeling nervous. I enjoy it. Everyone's on my side. How can that be a bad thing?"
<<<

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3. Third-round result (Friday 15th June 2007)
---------------------

+ MARION BARTOLI [5,S] d. Angelique Kerber, 6-2 6-0

I didn't watch this match properly, because my attention was divided between this on Court 3 and Yuliana Fedak's match against Li,Na on Court 4; I then had to walk out on both of them in order to watch Maria Kirilenko play Jelena Janković in the match of the day on Centre Court.

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4. Quarter-final eyewitness report: Bartoli v Hantuchová
(Saturday 16th/Sunday 17th June 2007)
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+ MARION BARTOLI [5,S] d. DANIELA HANTUCHOVÁ [3,EF], 5-7 6-4 7-5

A frustrating match for me as a Daniela-fan, because I believe that Daniela is even more talented than Marion, especially on grass (I wrote this before Marion went on to reach the Wimbledon-final!), but she failed to impose herself at the right times.

Indeed, Daniela started the match like she was going to sweep Marion aside, winning the first six points of the match to go 1-0* (30/0) up. But after squandering two break-points at 15/40 in that game, it was Marion who broke first to go *3-2 up. Marion took an off-court medical time-out when she was about to serve for the first set at 5-4. She resumed with two double faults as Daniela reeled off the next three games to take the first set.

Daniela was broken in the first game of the second set, and then just couldn't make any impression on Marion's serve as Marion clung to that break like a limpet. Marion is a Selesian player (two hands both sides), and she hit plenty of groundstroke-winners throughout the match, particularly crosscourt ones.

It was a high-quality match - unfortunately I can't say the same about the view, as the first two sets were played on the very humble setting of Court 4 after rain had caused a terrible backlog; the match attracted a large crowd, and my decision to watch Alyona Bondarenko v Jelena Janković beforehand cost me a seat by Court 4, so I actually had to stand by Court 3 and watch the match from an angle (it was actually scheduled for Court 3, which the rain had made unplayable, so I had no idea when it was going to start).

By the end of the second set, it was getting cold, dark and slippery. With Daniela facing break-point at 30/40 in the first game of the third, both players stopped playing, went to the net, and after a lengthy discussion with the officials, it was suspended overnight, with both players agreeing to play the final on Sunday should the winner happen to defeat Maria Sharapova in the semi-finals.

The third set resumed on Centre Court on Sunday, and both players were pretty nervous. Marion did convert that break-point, and was never behind in the game-score, though she did look very choky when serving for the match at 5-4. But instead of seizing the momentum, Daniela helped Marion on her way to the semi-finals with some cheap errors in the last two games.

My full match-report, with a description of every point, can be found at...
http://geocities.com/andrewbroad/ten...ngham2007.html

----------------------------------------------------
5. Semi-final eyewitness report: Sharapova v Bartoli
(Sunday 17th June 2007)
----------------------------------------------------

+ MARIA SHARAPOVA [1,EF] d. MARION BARTOLI [5,S], 7-5 6-0

The first set was anything but straightforward, as play was held up for 34 minutes with MariA leading 3-2*, as a woman in Stand C had a very nasty fall and had to be airlifted to hospital, and then an elderly man sitting right in front of me in Stand D fainted in the 18°C heat and had to be removed by trained first-aiders!

Play resumed once both those casualties had been removed from the stadium, but the helicopter-ambulance didn't actually arrive until 4-4 (30/15), whereupon MariA lost the next three points; thus MariON served for the first set at 5-4.

But MariON, who had choked dramatically when she served for the match at 5-4 in the third set against Daniela Hantuchová two hours earlier, threw in two consecutive double faults, and MariA won every game left in the match.

My full match-report, with a description of every point, can be found at...
http://geocities.com/andrewbroad/ten...ngham2007.html

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

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/selesians/
__________________
My Eternal Fanship: 1. Monica Seles; 2. Мария Шарапова (‘Maria Sharapova’); 3. Daniela Hantuchová; 4. Jelena Dokić; 5. Iva Majoli; 6. Karina Habšudová; 7. Вера Звонарёва (‘Vera Zvonarëva’); 8. Nicole Vaidišová; 9. Анна Чакветадзе (‘Anna Chakvetadze’); 10. Lucie Šafářová; 11. Ирода Туляганова (‘Iroda Tulyaganova’); 12. Magdaléna Rybáriková; 13. Sabine Lisicki

Last edited by andrewbroad : Mar 29th, 2008 at 06:56 PM.
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