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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everybody! I'm a member of the club which hosts the Dubai tennis Championships so I have the widest access to everything you can imagine. I share the gym the swimming pool and other stuff with the players, so I see a LOT.
Anyway I've been at todays qualifying and here's what I saw:
I saw Vera Douchevina's match against Sromova,a 302-ranked player, whom ofcourse she won. Right after it I stood near the entrance of the court and waited till she leaves it. When she did I opproached her and asked if I could take a picture if her. And she was like: 8) "OF me?! O-okey." Looks like she isn't used to people being interested in her yet. This is a little off-topic but she looks better in real life than on pictures. Btw. pics of her comming tommorow.
I watched other matches but they were nothing special, except for Obata vs. Beltrame. Beltrame ruled most of the match, even without being aggresive (50% of her shots were 3-4 meters over the net.She could command just by not making errors. She could withsatnd Obata's flat shots nevertheless, who did commit errors. I didn't see what happened in the end ( went to see Dokic's practice) but it's a pity she lost.
Jelena Dokic was practicing with Schiavone. She wasn't in the mood and wasn't hitting well, made a lot of errors. When she practiced individual shots she was alright, but when she played a kind of practice match she was the one who ended most of the rallies ( 70 times of 100 with a miss). Something is definitely still wrong with her :awww: I also saw her in the gym but she left soon after comming as her coach and someone else (perhaps a boyfriend) made a joke on her, and she couldn't stand it. If this mental depression doesn't stop she wouldn't last long in the tournament. Btw. pics of her comming in too.
I also caught Myskina practice with Likhovtseva. I wouldn't have seen them if it wasn't for them running back and forth looking for the entrance to the court. Nastya came with her coach, who by the way didn't do anything 'coachy'. For what it's worth he was just their "ball man" . In the middle of the practice when the man tried to give Nastya an advice on one of her shots an argument started. I don't know what it was about but in the end Lena Nastya and that guy were all laughing so I guess it wasn't very serius. Btw. pics of Nastya are comming too.
Shaughnessy was around as well.
More reports soon.
 

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Thanks Vass!! Keep them coming...
 

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Oh shoot. I just found out that I could've been present for the live draw ceremony! And I missed it. they also showed it just now in the local news, and guess what...I switched on the tv only to see Myskina's and a few other names flash by on the screen and the anchor on the station switching to another topic. So much for my luck this time.
 

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Thank you Vass. The reports and insider stuff is fantastic.
Tell us everything. Yeah, and don't forget to enjoy yourself.
Can't wait to see the pics!!!!!! :) :worship:
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Ok i'm afraid there are hardly faces on the pics, as it is difficult to catch the right moment to take an action pic. Only Vera's and a few other's faces are good on the pics but the bodies are fine. Anyway, I'll scan them later, off for the tournament now.

PS: there is no way Jelena practiced with Ai. Unless Ai playes with Fischer rackets and looks like Schiavone. Now compare their faces and see it there could be a mistake....
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Report of the second qualifying day:
I can to the tournament about 2:30 in the afternoon today. I directly looked at the court where the players practiced before. I got Lucky again seeing Myskina there again. This time she was with her coach only. She played some rallies with him and then practiced volleys. Her drop volleys were fine, but the smash of the lobs was 'only' ok. I took some pics of her again. She once again had an arrogant talk with the coach at the net, but then continued practicing.
I didn't finish watching her practice because Justine Henin-Hardeen, whom I saw for the first time was too practicing on court 4. I didn't take any pics, because of the tent around the court; the only open side was far from her. But, I did notice that there was some kid (girl) running around. I wonder who she is? Justine doesn't have children yet, right? Anyway I don't want to focus on that and start a rumour (if any reporter is reading this: This writing is private property and I'll sue if you reproduce it ;) ). Justine was hitting realy well, and I saw no sign of illness due to which she withdrew from the last tournament. I highly doubt that she'll retire. Anyway, she practiced on that small court for only 25-30 minutes and then left. After some time I climbed the studium and found her hitting some balls on the centre court, and I took some photos this time. It seems that Jelena practiced there too before her, as she was sitting with her coach and boyfriend(?) on the sidecourt. Dokic left soon.
Justine played even better on the big court (she was practicing, like before, with Olivier, a coach from this tennis clup; he's a former pro I guess). I watched her for only 5 minutes and then left- I was hurrying to be photographed with Nastya.
I was leaving JHH in time as Nastya was already going back to the player's lounge. When I asked "may I take a photo with you?" she almost whispered :hearts: "yes you may". I knew she was a quiet and shy little mouse (Myskina is a derivative of "mouse" in Russia) , but I didn't know that it was to this extent!
I didn't watch any matches today, insted I watched Kuznetsova and someone I didn' quite recognise, maybe Pisnik, practice. Kuznetsova hit the ball very hard as usual, but had no accuracy. Her serve was awesome though. There was a funny moment: I was looking at something that very much looked like Kuznetsova practicing her serve only...But it turned out to be a practice game! A game in which the opponent didn't hit a single return ( nets, outs, wides don't count). ;)
When play ended on all courts I went to the club house and saw Krasnoroutskaya inside. For some reason she followed me with her look for 4 seconds! I'm thinking she remembers me from last yer or something ( after her first match in 03 I was the only one on the centrecourt to ask for an autograph). Anyway, she booked herself a practice court and walked away into the player's lounge (to which I don't have acess) with her mum. Turns out I've been walking around her mother for hours earlier: she was reading near the swimming pool and then near the squash courts in the hall.

Ok, we know Justine is not retiring, but Cappy and Mauresmo- I don't know. They are the only players I didn't see at all. Haven't heared of them too. Also I didn't see Venus, but coincidently, when I was about to leave, I overheared some official talking on a mobile phone. I heared Venus's name and then " talk to her...< inaudible> she has a practice booked right in the middle of an all-access-hour tommorow." I'm guessing she's in Dubai from this.

That's all I can remember!
PS: Pics will be posted after tommorow.
 

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Vass22 said:
Also I didn't see Venus, but coincidently, when I was about to leave, I overheared some official talking on a mobile phone. I heared Venus's name and then " talk to her...< inaudible> she has a practice booked right in the middle of an all-access-hour tommorow." I'm guessing she's in Dubai from this.

That's all I can remember!
PS: Pics will be posted after tommorow.

Much thanks Vass! :yeah:
 

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Vass, could you give some insights on Vera-Babsi match? Has Vera played so well or Babsi was completely off?

thanks for reports, btw! they are great! have fun! :bounce:
 

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it would make sense if Sveta practiced with Pisnik, since Sveta's first round opponent has a similar to Pisnik style of game (Francheska)
 

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Oh man this is some good info. Still no Jen though right??? That makes me sad I hope she will be there soon and if not I am going to be so upset. She would not have asked for a wild card if she wasn't going to play right? Well keep us informed this is so good I am very jealous of you!!!!
 
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