Tag Archive | "Brisbane International Open"

Just Like Old Times: Henin Pockets First Title Since Return

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Just Like Old Times: Henin Pockets First Title Since Return


After runner placements in Brisbane and the Australian Open, Justine Henin captured her first title since rejoining the tour.  At the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix, a premier indoor clay tournament, Henin prevailed over Samantha Stosur 6-4,2-6,6-1 in the finals.

Both Stosur and Henin entered as wildcards.  While the latter was unseeded, the former was seeded 7th and won 11 successive matches including a clay title in Charleston.  The first four games, each player readily held serve.  At 2 all, with a backhand down the line winner, Stosur had game point.  By connecting on a backhand down the line return, Henin leveled things at deuce.  After provoking an error from Stosur on a second game point, because of a double fault, Henin had break point.  With a strong forehand return, Henin forced another mistake from Stosur to seize the break.  As Henin served at 4-3, Stosur effaced a game point for deuce by forcing a forehand miscue.  Subsequently, Stosur manufactured a break point.  Henin got out of jail with a good serve and eventually held for 5-3.  Later, on her second set point, Henin bagged the first set.

As a result of a flubbed forehand volley, Stosur faced double break point in the second set.  However, Stosur rebounded with a myriad of good serves to hold for 2-1.  Next, serving at 2 all, by netting a backhand, Stosur stared at her third break point this set.  Again with a couple of huge serves, Stosur remained on track at 3-2.  Then, after Henin netted a forehand, Stosur had her initial break point.  Henin escaped with a decent serve. Next, with a forehand crosscourt pass winner, Stosur fabricated her second break point which she converted when Henin erred with a forehand up the line.  After consolidating for 5-2, with a forehand up the line winner, Stosur broke to take the set.

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Roddick Squeezes By Stepanek in Brisbane

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Roddick Squeezes By Stepanek in Brisbane


img_9890With the Australian Open approximately one week away, in the finals of the Brisbane International Open, top seed Andy Roddick battled defending champion Radek Stepanek.  Roddick edged out Stepanek 7-6, 7-6 to capture his first 2010 title.

With Stepanek serving at 2-3 in the first set, Roddick had the chance to draw first blood when a forehand volley winner gave him break point.  However, with a good serve resulting in a return error, Stepanek got back on track.  Roddick manufactured another break point opportunity, but, with strategic volleying, Stepanek squared the set at 3 all.  The next game, as Roddick misfired on a backhand pass, Stepanek had his initial break point. Roddick dug himself out with a couple of service bombs. After Roddick failed to convert on two set points on Stepanek’s serve, the tiebreaker went into effect.  Once Stepanek double faulted to hand Roddick a 2-1mini-break advantage, his play deteriorated.  Thanks to a bunch of backhand errors from Stepanek, Roddick swiftly claimed the set.

As a result of four consecutive errors by Stepanek including two double faults, Roddick grabbed a break advantage.  After Roddick had no trouble consolidating, he crushed a backhand down the line for another break point.  With Stepanek bitten by the double fault bug again, Roddick jumped to a double break lead for 3-0. In no time, Roddick stretched his edge to 5-1.  But, with  Roddick serving for the championship at 5-2, Stepanek struck a forehand up the line pass for break point.  Then, with a stumbling Roddick unable to reach a spectacular lob, Stepanek wiped out one break.  Subsequent to an easy service game, Stepanek forced a couple of backhand errors from Roddick to level the set at 5 all.  Following an uneventful game, Stepanek took his first lead at 6-5.  Ultimately, Roddick steadied his play to push the set to a tiebreaker. In a charitable mood again, Stepanek started by donating a mini-break with a backhand crosscourt mistake.  As Stepanek’s backhand fell apart, Roddick built a 6-1 edge. Still, never one to fold, Stepanek raised his performance and expunged five championship points.  Moreover, Stepanek provoked a return error to obtain set point.  But, when Stepanek’s slice backhand sailed long, both players were knotted at 7. On his serve, Roddick arrived at another championship point with an overhead winner. When Stepanek double faulted,  Andy finally put his pesky opponent away.

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