Well, I arrived to the tournament at around 3 pm and I was surfing the web and following Wimbledon's final in the press room as matches started here at 4pm (too hot in Sicily to play earlier
, in fact Sunday final is scheduled at 10 am
) Now to the matches:
Delia Sesciorenau (377 WTA) def. Trudi Musgrave (324 WTA) 6/4 6/3
Delia is a young and good player who commands the play from the baseline creating good angles. Plus has an excellent attitude, very focused and not even questioning bad calls, just going for the next point. Just add that she's playing at home as she trains in this club and has brought it this year to Serie A in interclub matches. (She won all her matches during the year losing a few games
Trudi has played quite good, honestly before the match I thought she would be trashed (what the hell is doing an Aussie *other than Wheeler* playing on clay in July?) but she proved me wrong and played a decent match. She's got a very nice and flat two handed backhand and a very effective attacking game. The fact that she only has a ranking of #324 shows the great depth of women's tennis.
Sara Errani (WC) (785 WTA) def. Emily Stellato (394 WTA) 6/4 6/3
Quite boring match with a low level of play (especially from Emily, I don't know what she's done to be in top 400) Sara is just an ok player that won't even reach top 200 in her career. After the match coming from the press room I could see in a lonely corner poor Emily sitting on the floor crying and talking to her cellular.
She looks a shy and nice girl
Yuliana Fedak (176 WTA) def. Stefanie Haidner (286 WTA) 6/4 6/4
This was a quite competitive match. Yuliana has the body of a 12 year old girl and although she hits the ball hard she doesnt create angles. If she adds variety to her game she could improve, otherwise she will never get to top 100. BTW, in this couple of days I've seen her a lot around and she's always sooo serious, no smiling at all. She keeps cheering for herself during the match in both english and russian.
Haidner has a very beautiful game, one handed backhand and create lots of angles. Shame that she can't finish the point. Her inexperience costed her the match. She's a nice girl and will improve in the rankings for sure
Julia Schruff (5) (129 WTA) def. Aniko Kapros (204 WTA) 6/2 6/2
This has been a closer match that the score suggests. Julia has a very very solid game from the baseline, nice strokes and rarely misses. Aniko has played well. (In fact I was surprised as is the first time I see her live and she's got and excellent serve, one of the best of the day
and she's quite fit, is that the same Aniko you talk about guys?
) Her problem has been Julia, she was way too consistent and at the end was the Hungarian the one to miss. If during the match Aniko complained about the ballboys after the loss she was nice and smiling, and playing with her cellular (that huge one to make pictures with
) Julia needed a medical time out with a problem on her les but I think she will be ok.
Eva Fislova (6) (131 WTA) def. Valeria Bondarenko (734 WTA) 6/3 6/0
Eva has displayed a very solid game who has gotten crazy the young Ukranian. She was all the time complaining at herself and throwing the racket
She has the game but she has to improve her fitness to play at this level. Eva was in another league and looks ready to get into the top 100
Laura Dell'Angelo (354 WTA) def. Caroline Schneider (795 WTA) 6/3 6/4
That was a match of an average quality. (Later I knew that they are friends and both live very close in Munich and was a weird match for them)
Laura didn't have to do a lot to win it against an obvious doubles player.
Maret Ani (161 WTA) def. Silvia Disderi (361 WTA) 7/6 6/4
This match hasn't been as close as the score indicates as a very boyish Maret
was always in control. Total beauty Silvia has tried but the Estonian was too good for her.
Caroline Dhenin (432 WTA) def. Dominique Van Boekel (WC) (833 WTA) 6/2 3/6 6/0
That was the worst match of the day with 2 players that look everything but players
mostly a doubles player) The one who missed the less was the winner.
Bahia Mouthassine (8) (157 WTA) def. Valentina Sassi (274 WTA) 6/4 6/4
That was a very good match. Bahia, who at first sight you might thing that she won't move too much with a body like hers is incredibly fast and have a very fine tennis with an excellent flat drive (a là Frazier). Valentina has really impressed me because she's top 100 material, maybe a bit irregular but her ranking is not very "real".
Renata Voracova (3) (120 WTA) def. Giulia Casoni (238 WTA) 6/1 6/2
Easy win for Renata in a match that illustrates very well the growing differences between the latin tennis (Spanish, Italian, South American...)
that tend to raise the ball in a more defensive way and the Eastern tennis who basically smacks the ball around the court. And if the player is as good as Renata there's nothing you can do...
Ivana Abramovic (199 WTA) def. Mara Santangelo (4) (127 WTA) 1/6 7/5 7/5
Without a doubt the match of the day. Two players with great and very agressive tennis. Ivana is thin and looks fragile but is fast and fights a lot. Mara is so tall that with 2 steps covers the whole court
I arrived when the first set had just finished and I was quite surprised as I had seen Ivana train and looked great. After losing 6/1 everything look fixed when Ivana got a 5/0 lead only to let her opponent recover to 5/5
Ivana kept the calm and won the 2 next games and the set
Last set was very hard and the 2 players were very tired. Ivana got a 4/2 lead but Mara served for the match at 5/4. Ivana broke, and fitter, won the last 2 games to close the match. That was an excellent match with LOTS of bad calls (Santagelo was complaining a lot, I don't really like that girl
) . These are 2 girls with a great future ahead of them and I wouldn't be surprised if they come back next year as seeded players in the MD.
Being that the last match of the day played with artificial light all the Italian players were there cheering for Mara and I met Caroline Schneider, a very nice player that told me how she enjoys the tour, that she was playing doubles with Vinci, and how nice are Spanish players, especially Maria Antonia
I actually told her that I was born the same day as MASL and surprisingly she said the day of my birthday...what a memory
She was surprised too when I told her that I saw her playing in Barcelona qualys 10 years ago
By the way, she speaks very fluent italian because when she started to play ITF nobody spoke English here so she basically had to learn it the hard way
And if you don't like the main draw you have to talk to her as she was the one who made it
I saw other players like Nagyova training very hard, Marta Marrero and CMG training together and Kaia running and running and running the whole day around the club with her headphones on.
I hope you like it, feel free to ask anything