Tag Archive | "Azarenka"

Sharapova, Djokovic, Federer and Serena Take Stadium Court at Sony Ericsson Open

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Sharapova, Djokovic, Federer and Serena Take Stadium Court at Sony Ericsson Open



World number two Maria Sharapova opens up the proceedings on stadium court on Monday at the Sony Ericsson Open. Sharapova collides with countrywoman Ekaterina Makarova. Sharapova leads 3-0 in their head to head.

Following that is another fourth round match as Serena Williams clashes with Samantha Stosur. This will be their first encounter since Stosur surprised Williams in the final at the U.S. Open.

Defending champion Novak Djokovic looks to continue his campaign for a third Sony Ericsson title. With a 10-1 record, the world number one is the overwhelming favorite as he faces compatriot Viktor Troicki.

The evening session begins with Roger Federer duking it out with Andy Roddick for a spot in the fourth round. Federer is 21-2 versus his opponent. Venus Williams and Ana Ivanovic close out the night as they tussle for a berth in the quarterfinals.

Also in action are Victoria Azarenka, Juan Martin Del Potro, Mardy Fish and Caroline Wozniacki.

Here is today’s complete order of play :

Monday, March 26, 2012

STADIUM Start 11:00 am

Ekaterina Makarova (RUS) v [2] Maria Sharapova (RUS) WTA

Not Before 1:00 PM
[6] Samantha Stosur (AUS) v [10] Serena Williams (USA) WTA
[1] Novak Djokovic (SRB) v [27] Viktor Troicki (SRB) ATP
[11] Juan Martin Del Potro (ARG) v [23] Marin Cilic (CRO) ATP

Starting at 7:30 PM
[3] Roger Federer (SUI) v [31] Andy Roddick (USA) ATP

Not Before 9:00 PM
[WC] Venus Williams (USA) v [15] Ana Ivanovic (SRB) WTA

GRANDSTAND Start 11:00 am

[28] Kevin Anderson (RSA) v [8] Mardy Fish (USA) ATP
[12] Nicolas Almagro (ESP) v [20] Fernando Verdasco (ESP) ATP
[8] Na Li (CHN) v [12] Sabine Lisicki (GER) WTA

Not Before 4:30 PM
[1] Victoria Azarenka (BLR) v [16] Dominika Cibulkova (SVK) WTA
[21] Juan Monaco (ARG) v [14] Gael Monfils (FRA) ATP

COURT 1 Start 11:00 am

[17] Richard Gasquet (FRA) v Albert Ramos (ESP) ATP

Not Before 1:00 PM
[6] Mahesh Bhupathi (IND)/Rohan Bopanna (IND) v
Marcel Granollers (ESP)/Rafael Nadal (ESP) ATP
[30] Julien Benneteau (FRA) v [5] David Ferrer (ESP) ATP

Not Before 4:30 PM
[23] Yanina Wickmayer (BEL) v [4] Caroline Wozniacki (DEN) WTA
Colin Fleming (GBR)/Ross Hutchins (GBR) v
[7] Leander Paes (IND)/Radek Stepanek (CZE) ATP

COURT 2 Start 11:00 am

Vania King (USA)/Monica Niculescu (ROU) v
[7] Yaroslava Shvedova (KAZ)/Galina Voskoboeva (KAZ) WTA

Not Before 12:00 PM
[22] Maria Kirilenko (RUS) v [7] Marion Bartoli (FRA) WTA
[WC] Garbine Muguruza Blanco (ESP) v [5] Agnieszka Radwanska (POL) WTA
Vera Dushevina (RUS)/Shahar Peer (ISR) v
[WC] Gisela Dulko (ARG)/Paola Suarez (ARG) WTA

COURT 3 Start 12:00 noon

[WC] Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (RUS)/Lucie Safarova (CZE)
vNuria Llagostera Vives (ESP)/Arantxa Parra Santonja (ESP) WTA
Lukasz Kubot (POL)/Janko Tipsarevic (SRB) v
Santiago Gonzalez (MEX)/Scott Lipsky (USA) ATP
Julia Goerges (GER)/Samantha Stosur (AUS) v
Anabel Medina Garrigues (ESP)/Flavia Pennetta (ITA) WTA

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Sunday’s Matchups at the 2012 Sony Ericsson Open

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Sunday’s Matchups at the 2012 Sony Ericsson Open



Tomas Berdych and Grigor Dimitrov open up play on Stadium Court on Sunday at the 2012 Sony Ericsson Open. Following that matchup, Venus Williams hopes to build off her upset of Petra Kvitova and move on to the fourth round when she takes on Aleksandra Wozniak.

Other notable day session matches include Rafael Nadal versus Radek Stepanek on Stadium Court and Andy Murray versus Milos Raonic on the Grandstand.

In the night session, defending Sony Ericsson Open champion Victoria Azarenka is looking to extend her 25 match winning streak in 2012 when she faces off with Heather Watson. John Isner versus Florian Mayer will close out the evening session.

Here is today’s complete order of play :

Sunday, March 25, 2012

STADIUM Start 11:00 am

[7] Tomas Berdych (CZE) v Grigor Dimitrov (BUL) ATP

Not Before 1:00 PM
[WC] Venus Williams (USA) v [WC] Aleksandra Wozniak (CAN) WTA

Not Before 3:00 PM
[20] Daniela Hantuchova (SVK) v [15] Ana Ivanovic (SRB) WTA
[25] Radek Stepanek (CZE) v [2] Rafael Nadal (ESP) ATP

Starting at 7:30 PM
[1] Victoria Azarenka (BLR) v [WC] Heather Watson (GBR) WTA

Not Before 9:30 PM
[19] Florian Mayer (GER) v [10] John Isner (USA) ATP

GRANDSTAND Start 11:00 am

[18] Alexandr Dolgopolov (UKR) v [9] Janko Tipsarevic (SRB) ATP
[13] Gilles Simon (FRA) v [22] Jurgen Melzer (AUT) ATP
[26] Milos Raonic (CAN) v [4] Andy Murray (GBR) ATP
Silvia Soler-Espinosa (ESP) v [5] Agnieszka Radwanska (POL) WTA

Not Before 5:00 PM
[1] Bob Bryan (USA)/Mike Bryan (USA) v
Marcelo Melo (BRA)/Juan Monaco (ARG) ATP

COURT 1 Start 11:00 am

Simona Halep (ROU) v [7] Marion Bartoli (FRA) WTA
[WC] Garbine Muguruza Blanco (ESP) v [24] Flavia Pennetta (ITA) WTA
[6] Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (FRA) v [32] Philipp Kohlschreiber (GER) ATP
[16] Kei Nishikori (JPN) v Lukas Rosol (CZE) ATP

Not Before 6:00 PM
Oliver Marach (AUT)/Alexander Peya (AUT) v
[2] Max Mirnyi (BLR)/Daniel Nestor (CAN) ATP

COURT 2 Start 11:00 am

Jie Zheng (CHN) v [16] Dominika Cibulkova (SVK) WTA
David Marrero (ESP)/Fernando Verdasco (ESP) v
Feliciano Lopez (ESP)/Marc Lopez (ESP) ATP
Ksenia Pervak (KAZ) v [22] Maria Kirilenko (RUS) WTA
Ekaterina Makarova (RUS)/Jie Zheng (CHN) v
Eva Birnerova (CZE)/Klaudia Jans-Ignacik (POL) WTA
Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi (PAK)/Jean-Julien Rojer (NED) v
Daniele Bracciali (ITA)/Juan Sebastian Cabal (COL) ATP

COURT 3 Start 12:00 noon

[6] Sara Errani (ITA)/Roberta Vinci (ITA) v
[WC] Anna-Lena Groenefeld (GER)/Petra Martic (CRO) WTA

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Nadal, Murray, Azarenka and Venus in Action at Sony Ericsson Open

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Nadal, Murray, Azarenka and Venus in Action at Sony Ericsson Open



Action at the 2012 Sony Ericsson Open gets under way today with Andy Murray taking on Alejandro Falla on Stadium Court. Murray is hoping for a repeat performance of 2009 where he was the champion in Miami. Top seed and world number one Victoria Azarenka begins her quest to defend her title in Miami when she faces off with Michaella Krajicek.

In the night session, three-time Sony Ericsson Open champion Venus Williams goes up against the reigning Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova. That match will be followed by Rafael Nadal versus Santiago Giraldo.
Nadal, a three-time runner-up in Miami is looking to secure his first Sony Ericsson Open title after losing in an epic third set tie breaker last year to Novak Djokovic.

Here is today’s complete order of play :

Friday, March 23, 2012

STADIUM Start 11:00 am

Alejandro Falla (COL) v [4] Andy Murray (GBR) ATP
Vania King (USA) v [15] Ana Ivanovic (SRB) WTA
[1] Victoria Azarenka (BLR) v Michaella Krajicek (NED) WTA
Nikolay Davydenko (RUS) v [10] John Isner (USA) ATP

Not Before 7:30 PM
[3] Petra Kvitova (CZE) v [WC] Venus Williams (USA) WTA
Santiago Giraldo (COL) v [2] Rafael Nadal (ESP) ATP

GRANDSTAND Start 11:00 am

[13] Gilles Simon (FRA) v [Q] Roberto Bautista-Agut (ESP) ATP
David Nalbandian (ARG) v [9] Janko Tipsarevic (SRB) ATP
[Q] Madison Keys (USA) v [5] Agnieszka Radwanska (POL) WTA
[11] Francesca Schiavone (ITA) v Ksenia Pervak (KAZ) WTA

Not Before 5:00 PM

[7] Tomas Berdych (CZE) v Nicolas Mahut (FRA) ATP
Marcos Baghdatis (CYP)/Sam Querrey (USA) v
[7] Leander Paes (IND)/Radek Stepanek (CZE) ATP

COURT 1 Start 11:00 am

[9] Vera Zvonareva (RUS) v [WC] Garbine Muguruza Blanco (ESP) WTA
[6] Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (FRA) v Xavier Malisse (BEL) ATP
[25] Radek Stepanek (CZE) v Tommy Haas (GER) ATP
[20] Daniela Hantuchova (SVK) v [Q] Kateryna Bondarenko (UKR) WTA

Not Before 5:00 PM
Polona Hercog (SLO) v [7] Marion Bartoli (FRA) WTA

COURT 2 Start 11:00 am

Anna Tatishvili (GEO) v [16] Dominika Cibulkova (SVK) WTA
[WC] Alisa Kleybanova (RUS) v [22] Maria Kirilenko (RUS) WTA
[26] Milos Raonic (CAN) v [Q] Arnaud Clement (FRA) ATP
[16] Kei Nishikori (JPN) v Lukas Lacko (SVK) ATP
Grigor Dimitrov (BUL) v [29] Juan Ignacio Chela (ARG) ATP

COURT 3 Start 11:00 am

[18] Angelique Kerber (GER) v Jie Zheng (CHN) WTA
[18] Alexandr Dolgopolov (UKR) v [Q] Antonio Veic (CRO) ATP
[WC] Heather Watson (GBR) v [27] Lucie Safarova (CZE) WTA
[1] Liezel Huber (USA)/Lisa Raymond (USA) v
Julia Goerges (GER)/Samantha Stosur (AUS) WTA
[WC] Gisela Dulko (ARG)/Paola Suarez (ARG) v
[2] Kveta Peschke (CZE)/Katarina Srebotnik (SLO) WTA

COURT 5 Start 11:00 am

Robin Haase (NED) v [22] Jurgen Melzer (AUT) ATP
[19] Florian Mayer (GER) v Ivan Dodig (CRO) ATP
Marcelo Melo (BRA)/Juan Monaco (ARG) v
[WC] James Blake (USA)/Ryan Harrison (USA) ATP

COURT 6 Start 11:00 am

[WC] Aleksandra Wozniak (CAN) v[28] Monica Niculescu (ROU) WTA
Frederico Gil (POR) v [32] Philipp Kohlschreiber (GER) ATP
Colin Fleming (GBR)/Ross Hutchins (GBR) v
Mardy Fish (USA)/Mark Knowles (BAH) ATP
Yung-Jan Chan (TPE)/Marina Erakovic (NZL) v
Svetlana Kuznetsova (RUS)/Vera Zvonareva (RUS) WTA
Olga Govortsova (BLR)/Anastasia Rodionova (AUS) v
Vera Dushevina (RUS)/Shahar Peer (ISR) WTA

COURT 7 Start 11:00 am

[31] Kaia Kanepi (EST) v Silvia Soler-Espinosa (ESP) WTA
Lourdes Dominguez Lino (ESP) v [24] Flavia Pennetta (ITA) WTA
[32] Nadia Petrova (RUS) v Simona Halep (ROU) WTA
Lukas Rosol (CZE) v [24] Marcel Granollers (ESP) ATP
Jarmila Gajdosova (AUS)/Klara Zakopalova (CZE) v
Nuria Llagostera Vives (ESP)/Arantxa Parra Santonja (ESP) WTA

COURT 8 Start 11:00 am

[4] Robert Lindstedt (SWE)/Horia Tecau (ROU) v
David Marrero (ESP)/Fernando Verdasco (ESP) ATP

Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi (PAK)/Jean-Julien Rojer (NED) v
Pablo Andujar (ESP)/Carlos Berlocq (ARG) ATP

[6] Sara Errani (ITA)/Roberta Vinci (ITA) v
Raquel Kops-Jones (USA)/Abigail Spears (USA) WTA

Iveta Benesova (CZE)/Barbora Zahlavova Strycova (CZE) v
[WC] Anna-Lena Groenefeld (GER)/Petra Martic (CRO) WTA

Feliciano Lopez (ESP)/Marc Lopez (ESP) v
Florian Mayer (GER)/Viktor Troicki (SRB) ATP

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Azarenka Decimates Sharapova In BNP Paribas Open Final

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Azarenka Decimates Sharapova In BNP Paribas Open Final



It was a rematch of this year’s Australian Open final with the same result. Victoria Azarenka crushed Maria Sharapova 6-2, 6-3 to win her fourth title of the season and maintain an unblemished 23-0 record.

With the world’s top two players vying for the title, the crowd expected a fierce contest. However, from the opening game, Azarenka demonstrated that she was going to take control and not relent.

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The U.S. One Step Closer to Regaining World Group Status

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The U.S. One Step Closer to Regaining World Group Status


In today’s third rubber, Serena Williams validated the adage that “it’s not how you start, but how you finish that counts”. Williams overcame Belarus’ Anastasia Yakimova 5-7, 6-1, 6-1 to clinch a spot for the United States in the World Group II play-offs.

On Saturday, Australian Open reigning champion Victoria Azarenka withdrew from World Group II competition due to a back injury. With the Worchester Massachusetts fans cheering them on, the Americans led by Serena and Christina McHale banked both ties in straight sets to take a 2-0 edge.

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Azarenka Basks in Australian Open Victory

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Azarenka Basks in Australian Open Victory


The 2012 Australian Open marks a bevy of milestones for Victoria Azarenka. The Belarusian reached her first final at a major. Moreover, by defeating Maria Sharapova 6-3,6-0, Azarenka claims her maiden major and will ascend to the number one spot for the first time.

Although they were tied at three a piece in their head to head, Azarenka had prevailed over Sharapova in the two previous finals they played. Still, this was a major and with three such trophies under her mantle, Sharapova had a colossal edge in experience.

Azarenka had her “Oh my God! I can‘t believe I‘m here” moment common with first time finalist which often signals disaster. Sharapova took advantage by breaking and consolidating for a 2-0 lead in the opening set. Yet, Azarenka refocused quickly to get back in the match.

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Serena Williams Stupendous in Rogers Cup Final

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Serena Williams Stupendous in Rogers Cup Final


Following her semifinal win, Serena Williams admitted that Samantha Stosur, the tenth seed, would be a tough task in the final. While Williams’ words were proven true early on, she still found the means to neutralize her adversary. Williams prevailed 6-4, 6-2 over Stosur for her second Rogers Cup Trophy.

For Stosur, the 2010 French Open finalist Stosur, it’s been a difficult year. Finally though, in Toronto, Stosur has been able to string together good performances putting down Na Li in the third round and Agniezska Radwanska, the titlist last week in Carlsbad, in the semifinals.

Although at their ultimate meeting, the 2010 French Open, Stosur saved match point in defeating Williams in the quarterfinals. With a record of 2-8 in finals, Stosur would have to come up with something special to beat Williams who has a mark 38-14 at this stage of tournaments.

In her third round match, Williams overcame dropping the first set against Jie Zheng and did the same in the quarterfinals in battling lefty Lucie Safarova. Yet, in the semifinals, Williams dominated world number four, Victoria Azarenka.

At first, Williams had no answer for Stosur’s hugest weapon, the kick serve. With an ace, Stosur sealed her second love game for 3-2. Later, by utilizing her second big asset, the forehand, Stosur connected on a down the line winner for game point. When Williams netted the return, Stosur went ahead 4-3.

Williams was also coasting on her service games and forcing a myriad of errors from Stosur. With no indication of an upcoming break point, the tide suddenly shifted with Stosur serving at 4 all and 40-15.

Williams pulverized a second serve forehand return winner which stunned Stosur. The Aussie’s subsequent first serve was hit with less power resulting ultimately in a backhand mistake by Stosur and deuce.

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Kvitova Turns Sharapova Away for Wimbledon Title

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Kvitova Turns Sharapova Away for Wimbledon Title


In 2004, at the age of 17, Maria Sharapova advanced to her first major final and stunned the overwhelming favorite Serena Williams at Wimbledon. Seven years hence, in her second final at the All England Club, Sharapova ran into an intrepid twenty-one year old copycat. Petra Kvitova, a lefty from the Czech Republic, shocked the Russian 6-3,6-4 to prevail in her maiden major final.

After Kvitova was broken to open the match, it seemed that nerves would be the deciding factor in the match. However, Kvitova manufactured triple break point and capitalized to get back on serve.

Her next service game, Kvitova wiped out break point to hold for 2-1. Later, subsequent to a forehand winner by Kvitova, Sharapova double faulted to hand her opponent break point. Sharapova produced a second double fault to give Kvitova a 4-2 edge.

With great serving, Kvitova consolidated for a 5-2 advantage. By relentlessly pressuring Sharapova’s serve, Kvitova came to her first set point when her counterpart dumped a forehand into the net.

Yet, with an ace, Sharapova cleared that hurdle. Ultimately, Sharapova guarded serve for 3-5. Still, at love, a serene Kvitova secured the first set.

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Venus and Serena Williams Maneuver Their Way into the Second Week at Wimbledon

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Venus and Serena Williams Maneuver Their Way into the Second Week at Wimbledon


A definite truism which applies to Serena Williams is that she’s always hungry for another major. The two time defending champion demonstrated that despite some first week cobwebs, she is prepared to fight for a “three-peat” at the All England Club.

Venus Williams, a five time champion at Wimbledon, is still in contention for another title on her most successful surface. Maria Sharapova, the 2004 champion, is almost playing to the standards expected of her. Sharapova is trying to get pass the fourth round for the first time since 2006 at this venue.

The most stunning early departure was 2010 runner-up Vera Zvonareva. Here’s a mid-tournament summary and a preview of the interesting match-ups to come.

After going the distance her first two rounds, Serena Williams cruised in the third round against Maria Kirilenko. The next round, Serena will have to bring her best stuff against Marion Bartoli, the 2007 Wimbledon finalist. Bartoli is playing with great confidence since winning her maiden grass court title in Eastbourne.

Subsequent to a comfortable opening match, Venus Williams clawed past 40 year old Kimiko Date-Krumm in the second round. However, in the third round, Venus coasted to victory. Next up for Venus is Tsvestana Pironkova.

In a rematch of last year’s semifinal, Pironkova avenged her lost to Zvonareva in the third round. In 2010, Pironkova reached the semifinals by upending Venus in the quarterfinals. Pironkova also ousted Venus at the Australian Open in 2006. With Pironkova’s 2-1 against Venus, this tussle could be another doozy.

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Serena and Venus Are Back: Wimbledon Is Anyone’s Trophy

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Serena and Venus Are Back: Wimbledon Is Anyone’s Trophy


The Williams sisters made their long awaited return to competitive tennis this week. Despite being rusty, with nine of the last eleven championships at the All England Club, Venus and Serena are among the favorites. Moreover, the Wimbledon draw sets up the potential for a fifth all Williams final. Here’s a more detailed analysis.

World number one Caroline Wozniacki hopes to validate her ranking with a first major. However, Wozniacki will need to do some heavy lifting to achieve that feat.

In the quarterfinals, Wozniacki may have to go through 2004 Wimbledon champion Maria Sharapova. In addition, for the Dane, a semifinal encounter with defending and four time winner Serena or reigning French Open champion Na Li may be in the cards. Needless to say, Wozniacki will have to work hard to earn her maiden major.

Serena will begin her title defense by facing the talented Aravane Rezai in the first round. In the fourth round, Serena could see another sizeable French hurdle in 2007 finalist Marion Bartoli.

Later, in the quarterfinals, Serena may clash against Li who is no push over. In Li’s case, Sabine Lisicki may present difficulties in the second round. Lisicki has been regaining her form and confidence as is evident with her recent title in Birmingham.

Sharapova is again in the mix at another major. While a first round match with countrywoman Anna Chakvetadze could be testy, Sharapova should come through. Sharapova is likely to have a tougher time in the fourth round if Samantha Stosur is the opponent.

Serena had been out of commission nearly a year. For the seventh seed to claim her fifth Wimbledon crown, she will have to come up with the type of performance which resulted in her surprise victory at the Australian Open in 2007. With Serena’s track record, it’s certainly hard to bet against her. Yet, with Ana Ivanovic, Maria Kirilenko, Flavia Pennetta and Julia Goerges in the top half of the draw, there is an endless list of players capable of pulling off an upset.

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