2014/04/18

Players React to the Heat at the Australian Open

 

(January 14, 2014) Temperatures topped 42C (108F) at the Australian Open on Tuesday while similar temperatures are expected to continue until Friday. Officials still did not invoke the “Extreme Heat Policy.” Here is the official statement from the Australian Open:

AUSTRALIAN OPEN STATEMENT

The top temperature at Melbourne Park today was 42.2 degrees Celsius, at 5.45pm.

Statement from Wayne McKewen, Referee:

While conditions were hot and uncomfortable, the relatively low level of humidity ensured that conditions never deteriorated to a point where it was necessary to invoke the extreme heat policy. Stages one and two of the heat policy were implemented.

Dr Tim Wood, Chief Medical Officer:

The majority of matches today were completed without any court calls from the medical team. Of course there were a few players who experienced heat related illness or discomfort, but none required significant medical intervention after they had completed their match.

 

Most of the matches today didn’t go for much longer than a couple of hours and generally the playing group coped extremely well.

 

Players reacted to the scorching temperatures in their news conferences. Here is a compilation of what the some of players said to press in response the heat:

Wozniacki frustrated

Q.  Could you give us a sense of the conditions and how you felt you coped with that today.
CAROLINE WOZNIACKI:  It was a little warm out there today.  But the first set I thought I managed to keep my head cool.  Every time in the changeovers, ice bags, ice towels, everything; and then in the second set I could feel they were starting to heat up even more.

I put the bottle down on the court and it started melting a little bit underneath, the plastic, so you knew it was warm.

But it was warm for both of us, and it was great that I managed to finish it off in two sets and it wasn’t too long.

Yeah, just had an ice bath now.  Yeah, I could go out and play another two sets now (smiling).

Victoria Azarenka

Q.  Any tricks of the trade to the heat?  Do you get an ice bath after that kind of heat?
VICTORIA AZARENKA:  I’m going to go probably after.  Just using ice, you know, hydrate.  It’s simple things, but you just have to be very disciplined about it.  Ball kids make a great job just bringing the ice towels right there.

 

Q.  Did you have a cold shower before you went out to hit the ball again, or is it a process that you go through to try and sort of bring your body temperature back down?
VICTORIA AZARENKA:  No, I just went out straight to go hit.  Actually put on a long sleeved shirt.  It wasn’t probably the smartest thing to do, but I’m fine.

 

Q.  Should the roof have been closed for your match?
VICTORIA AZARENKA:  I don’t know.  I would love it, but, you know, I think my opponent would also enjoy that.  But it’s fine, you know.

I think, you know, we’re all in the same conditions.  It’s much hotter out there right now than when I was playing.

 

Q.  Caroline said she put a plastic water bottle down on the court and she thought that it started melting a bit.  Is it that hot out there?
VICTORIA AZARENKA:  I don’t know.  It’s pretty hot.  I don’t know, when I went out on the court I was just curious what was the temperature.  Because even though it was windy, the wind was like hot wind.  Like I said, Just don’t blow it, because it’s like even hotter.  Just stop.

But you normally expect a little bit of, I don’t know, some freshness, I don’t know what, but it just didn’t come.  From anywhere (smiling).

 

Q.  The soles of your shoes weren’t burning, were they?
VICTORIA AZARENKA:  It felt pretty hot, like you’re dancing in a frying pan or something like that.

 

Maria Sharapova

Maria Sharapova

Q.  Not a bad first start.  What was it like playing in that sort of heat in the middle of the night?
MARIA SHARAPOVA:  Yeah, I knew I had a tough opponent ahead of me.  You know, the conditions were tough for everyone.  I think we got the least today, considering how late we played.  But it was still pretty warm out there.  Warm enough to have to use some ice vests.

But, you know, looking at her results in the last, you know, couple of weeks and last year and the matches that I’ve played against her, I knew that it was going to be a tough match.

No matter what I had to do, I wanted to get through it, and I think that’s what it was about today.

Q.  How did you like the vest?
MARIA SHARAPOVA:  It’s cool.  Feels good.  Makes you a little wet, but that’s okay.

Q.  Did you feel sorry in any way for some of the players in the heat?
MARIA SHARAPOVA:  Yeah, I noticed their facial expressions.  I’m sure it was very difficult for everyone.  I think everyone, except the meteorologists and the doctors, seemed to have the same opinion about the whether, so…

 

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga

Q.  Everyone’s talking about the heat.  How hot did it feel out there on court?  Some of the hottest conditions you played in?
JO WILFRIED TSONGA:  Yeah, I think it’s maybe the hottest condition I played in.  I remember a match I played against Nishikori a few years ago which was also tough.  We knew before it’s gonna be difficult today, and it was, so it’s good to finish that and look for the next round.

Q.  You seem to be having trouble with your shoes, with getting grip out there.  Was that just the heat?
JO WILFRIED TSONGA:  Yeah, because of the heat, you know, the material of the shoes, you know, it’s really becomes, you know, not really hard.  Like, I don’t know how to say it in English.

But anyway, it’s not good for our shoes when it’s hot like this.

 

Federer 1

Q.  Much obviously today has been made of the conditions.  How would you describe them and how it affected your play, if any, today?
ROGER FEDERER:  Yeah, I thought it was very dry, just hot, you know, stinging sort of sun.

I guess also it depends on who you play, if you’re playing a big server, clearly faster conditions.  If you’re getting into rallies, I guess you’ll feel the heat a bit more.

Depending on where you come from it has a bigger effect on you, this type of heat, than maybe humid heat.  So it’s very personal, and it can become just a very mental thing, you know, and you just can’t accept that it’s hot.

Just deal with it, because it’s the same for both.  That’s basically it.

 

Q.  You spoke before the tournament about how hard you trained in the offseason.  Does that help you if the weather stays like this to cope well?
ROGER FEDERER:  Yeah, I didn’t practice in 40 degree heat because that’s hard to find, you know, around the world.  I did that after the US Open.  In Dubai we had 42, 43, so that was warm then.

But like I said, it’s just a mental thing.  If you’ve trained hard enough your entire life or the last few weeks and you believe you can do it and come through it, there’s no reason.

If you can’t deal with it, you throw in the towel.  But that’s for me.

Q.  From your perspective, should the roof be closed on Rod Laver when the heat gets this bad?
ROGER FEDERER:  No.  I think it should always stay open, honestly.  That’s my opinion.

 

Kei Nishikori

Q.  How was it today?

KEI NISHIKORI:  I’m happy to win, I mean, first of all.  You know, it was not easy condition with the heat and with the wind.

Yeah, it’s always tough to play, you know, first round.  You get tight and, you know, anything can happen.

But I’m happy to win in fifth set.

Q.  Was there any point in the match where you had some problems with the heat?  Because you played five sets, three and a half hours, I think, 3:40.

KEI NISHIKORI:  Actually, not really.  Brisbane was much tougher.  It was no wind and humidity was high.  Here it’s, you know, with the wind and it’s dry, so it wasn’t too bad, actually.

 

Q.  I think it’s still 41 degrees outside.  How do you deal with the heat?
NICK KYRGIOS:  I think it suits my game pretty well.  It will suit my serving a lot.  The more aggressive you are, I think it helps a lot.

Obviously it’s affecting everyone out there.  It’s pretty tough.  You got to stay hydrated.  You got to be smart with nutrition, as well.

Yeah, tough conditions out there, for sure.

Juan Martin Del Potro

Q.  How did you find the conditions today in the heat?
JUAN MARTIN DEL POTRO:  Was terrible for play.  I mean, it was for both player, but is tough to play long rallies, to manage the weather conditions.  And it’s tough to play in these kind of conditions.

I mean, you are thinking about a lot more things than the tennis match.  You are trying to drink a lot and always thinking about your body, your physic, and not about the game.

I know tomorrow and after tomorrow it’s going to be worst, so I will try to be ready for the weather conditions, too.

Andy Murray 8202013

Q.  Do you think the conditions were safe out there?  A couple players collapsed.  A ball boy collapsed.
ANDY MURRAY:  Yeah, it’s definitely something that you maybe have to look at a little bit.  As much as it’s easy to say the conditions are safe   you know, a few people said there’s doctors and stuff saying it’s fine   it only takes one bad thing to happen.  And it looks terrible for the whole sport when people are collapsing, ball kids are collapsing, people in the stands are collapsing.  That’s obviously not great.

And I know when I went out to hit before the match, the conditions like at 2:30, 3:00 were very, very, very tough conditions.  Anyone’s going to struggle in that heat.

Whether it’s safe or not, I don’t know.  You just got to be very careful these days.  There’s been some issues in other sports with, you know, players having heart attacks.  I don’t know exactly why that is.  Or collapsing.

In this heat, that’s when you’re really pushing it to your limits.  You don’t want to see anything bad happen to anyone.

 

Q.  Were you surprised the heat rule wasn’t implemented today?
ANDY MURRAY:  I don’t know what the heat rule is, so…

Q.  Nobody does.
ANDY MURRAY:  Exactly.

Q.  Bearing in mind how hot it was this afternoon, you could have had a roof and air conditioning.
ANDY MURRAY:  Apparently it wasn’t that humid today.  That’s why it wasn’t implemented.  There’s different rules for the men and women.  I don’t know why.  I don’t understand what the difference is in the two rules.

If I’m told to play, I play; if not, then we don’t.

 

Q.  What’s the talk in the locker room?  Are people unhappy about it?
ANDY MURRAY:  I don’t know.  I mean, I didn’t sit down and discuss whether the guys are happy with the rules or not.

But every single person that I saw coming in from practice or going out to play a match or coming back from a match, everyone just said like, It’s really hot today.  That was what they said (smiling).

SloaneStephens

Q.  Has there been much chatter in the locker room today about the heat and wind, especially out on Court 6, the outer courts?
SLOANE STEPHENS:  Yeah, no, I saw it this morning at breakfast.  I was like, Can’t be windy outside.  I just expected it would be hot.

But, I mean, I kept looking at my phone.  Mine is in Fahrenheit.  I’m like 108 Fahrenheit, why is that happening?  Then I kind of like Googled 45 Centigrade like just to see what’s happening.

I think the heat was more in my mind than anything.  When I got there it wasn’t that bad for me.  Obviously I played later, so it was okay.

 

Q.  We don’t have to ask Siri about the Celsius conversion?
SLOANE STEPHENS:  Yeah, just ask me, because I’ve been looking at it all day (smiling).

GillesSimonTasteofTennis-600x450

Q.  So the conditions helped you?
GILLES SIMON:  Yeah.  If I feel ready and I want to fight from the baseline, then he a tough opponent because I will just look for rhythm in the match and finally the condition will be helpful for this.  He will serve fast, with the wind, with the heat; you don’t control anything.

But today it was the other way.  I just wanted it to be as short as possible with no reason.  I wanted him to feel bad, to get tight, and I managed to do that.

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Venus Williams, Sloane Stephens and Gael Monfils withdraw from tournaments

Venus Williams RG Wilson

Venus Williams

(January 5, 2014) Venus Williams, Sloane Stephens and Gael Monfils have withdrawn from tennis tournaments this week.

Venus Williams who was a losing finalist in Auckland, pulled out of the Hobart International on Sunday.

No. 12 Sloane Stephens is out of Sydney with a left wrist injury she suffered at Hopman Cup

“I was having some pain in my wrist and the doctor recommended I not play this week,” Stephens said via a press release.”This is a difficult decision, but the best decision for me and my team to make. I hope to be back at the Apia International Sydney next year.”

 

Monfils, who fell to Rafael Nadal in the Doha final on Saturday, cited fatigue in pulling out of the Auckland tournament.

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Sloane Stephens Hires Recent Roger Federer Coach for the Off-Season

SloaneStephens

(November 19, 2013) According to reports from both tennis.com and USA Today, the No. 2 U. S. female tennis player Sloane Stephens has hired recent Roger Federer coach and former ATP player Paul Annacone. Annacone and Federer parted ways last month after a 3 1/2 year partnership.

This will be the first time that Annacone has coached a female player. In addition to Federer, Annacone coached, Pete Sampras and Tim Henman.

The coaching arrangement between Stephens and Annacone is to last only for the off-season.

The 20-year-old Stephens had a career year in 2013, reaching the semifinals of the Australian Open, beating an injured Serena Williams in the quarterfinals. She ended the year at No. 12 in the world.

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Teams Named for 2014 Hopman Cup

 

(October 8, 2013) The official draw, teams and provisional schedule have been set for the mixed teams event,  the Hyundai Hopman Cup in Perth, Australia. The event will be held from December 28, 2013 through January 4, 2014.

 

     

 

   
  Schedule Time Matches
  Saturday 28 December 10:00 am Poland v Italy
    5:30 pm Canada v Australia
  Sunday 29 December 10:00 am Czech Republic v Spain
    5:30 pm Poland v Canada
  Monday 30 December 10:00 am USA v Spain
    5:30 pm France v Czech Republic
  Tuesday 31 December 10:00 am Italy v Australia
  Wednesday 1 January 5:30 pm USA v France
  Thursday 2 January 10:00 am Italy v Canada
    5:30 pm Poland v Australia
  Friday 3 January 10:00 am France v Spain
    5:30 pm Czech Republic v USA
  Saturday 4 January 5:30 pm Winner Group A v Winner Group B

 

 

Poland                                [15] Jerzy Janowicz and [4] Agnieszka Radwanska

USA                                     [13] John Isner and [12] Sloane Stephens

France                                [9] Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and [27] Alize Cornet

Canada                               [11] Milos Raonic and [35] Eugenie Bouchard

Czech Republic                [39] Radek Stepanek and [7] Petra Kvitova

Italy                                     [22] Andreas Seppi and [31] Flavia Pennetta

Australia                             [51] Bernard Tomic and [20] Sam Stosur

Spain                                   [19] Tommy Robredo and [98] Anabel Medina Garrigues

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Sloane Stephens Walks the Runway During Fashion Week in New York City

 

Tennis Player Sloane Stephens, actress Brittany Snow, and Austin Mahone plays the highly anticipated Just Dance 2014, due out in October at the Just Dance with Boy Meets Girl fashion show, Thursday, September 12, 2013, in New York City.(Photo by Mark Von Holden/Invision for Just Dance/AP Images)

Tennis player Sloane Stephens, actress Brittany Snow, and Austin Mahone plays the highly anticipated Just Dance 2014, due out in October at the Just Dance with Boy Meets Girl fashion show, Thursday, September 12, 2013, in New York City.(Photo by Mark Von Holden/Invision for Just Dance/AP Images)

(September 12, 2013) NEW YORK, NY – To celebrate the launch of Just Dance 2014 on October 8, 2013, Just Dance partnered with Boy Meets Girl during New York Fashion Week to create a completely Just Dance 2014-inspired collection that channels the energy and feel of the game. World No. 13 Sloane Stephens was one of models for the Just Dance with Boy Meets Girl show at STYLE 360 on September 12 at the Metropolitan Pavilion in New York City.

 

Actress Brittany Snow, fashion designer Stacey Igel, Sloane Stephens walks the runway at STYLE360 during the Just Dance with Boy Meets Girl fashion show on Thursday, September 12, 2013, in New York City. The collection is inspired by the style, look and energy of the new and highly anticipated Just Dance 2014, due out in October.(Photo by Mark Von Holden/Invision for Just Dance/AP Images)

Actress Brittany Snow, fashion designer Stacey Igel, Sloane Stephens walks the runway at STYLE360 during the Just Dance with Boy Meets Girl fashion show on Thursday, September 12, 2013, in New York City. The collection is inspired by the style, look and energy of the new and highly anticipated Just Dance 2014, due out in October.(Photo by Mark Von Holden/Invision for Just Dance/AP Images)

Updated September 28, 2013

After U.S. Open, Stephens Stays for Fashion Week

By KAREN PESTAINA

Most of the players who participated at the United States Open have already left New York and have scattered across the globe, with some of the men playing Davis Cup ties this weekend and the women off to play tournaments in Quebec City and Tashkent, Uzbekistan.

But Sloane Stephens, the 20-year-old American ranked at a career-high No. 13, remained to be a part of Fashion Week. Stephens walked the runway Thursday night at the Just Dance With Boy Meets Girl fashion show at STYLE360 at the Metropolitan Pavilion, modeling the designs of Stacy Igel.

“I’m really excited because I’ve never walked in a fashion show before, so this is new for me,” Stephens said before the show.

She practiced her runway walk by pacing the hallways while in New York.

So what is more nerve-racking for Stephens: walking a runway during Fashion Week or playing on center court at a major?

“I think it’s two different types of nervousness,” Stephens said. “On center court, it’s like, ‘Let’s play already, I just want to get to it.’

“Before a show, it’s nervousness, like ‘I don’t want to do it.’ But I’m excited, I think I’ll be proud of it obviously, it’s something I’ve never done before. So I might be up there saying I want to do it again or I might be like – I’m never doing that again. Hopefully I will have a good experience and want to do it again.”

Stephens, who has appeared in Vogue and Teen Vogue, was named one of Vogue’s Style Stars in December. She does feel some pressure living up to that reputation.

“A little bit, but I don’t really go places where people would like see me and say like, ‘What is she wearing?’ ” Stephens said. “So that’s a good thing.”

She added, “I try to look cute all the time.”

Stephens spoke about her relationship with fashion, which mostly involves spending money on it.

“I love to shop, I love to see new things,” she said. “I obviously have a lot of free time when I’m on the road. It gives me something to do. I can look up all types of designers. You have the Internet, you have everything. It’s definitely something that has been built into my life because it’s something I could do to waste a lot of time. And it’s fun, so it definitely has taken a big part of my life because it’s something I really like to do.”

Asked about whether she would like to have her own place in the world of fashion, she said: “I’m thinking about it, but obviously it’s really tough. Fashion is very judgmental. It’s something where you have to be careful. I have a long way to go before I can be a designer. I’d love to one day, but we’ll see.”

Stephens is within striking distance of the top 10 with a chance at qualifying for the year-end WTA Championships in Istanbul. She is in 11th place in the race to Istanbul.

“I did not find out until yesterday that I had a chance to be in the year end; that’s pretty cool,” she said. “I’m excited. I’d love to make year end, and obviously being 13 this week is pretty good and will try to get better.”

“I need 200 points to get there,” she said as she prepares to play the Asian swing of the tour. “Four tournaments with no points to defend. It’s looking pretty good, and obviously, first, first, first and first would be my ideal. I’m just going to try to keep playing well and have fun. It’s obviously a little bit of pressure trying to reach a goal, being really close, but I think I’ll do fine.”

After a third-round victory in the Australian Open in January, Stephens said that she gave herself a fashion reward of Jimmy Choo shoes.

Will Stephens give herself some sort of a fashion purchase as an incentive to make the top 10?

“I’ll probably go on vacation somewhere nice by myself,” she said. “I shop every day, so every day is a gift and a surprise.

“Love when I come to New York; I do all my shopping, I spend too much money. I’ve already bought all my gifts for the rest of the year two weeks ago.”

Article was originally posted on the New York Times’ website:

After U.S. Open, Stephens Stays for Fashion Week

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Serena Williams Beats Sloane Stephens to Gain Quarterfinal Berth at US Open

Delta Air Lines With The Williams Sisters

(September 1, 2013) FLUSHING MEADOWS, NY – For a match labeled a potential epic, the match failed to live up to its billing as No. 1 Serena Williams gained a bit of revenge on No. 15 seed Sloane Stephens on Sunday when the veteran took out the youngster at the US open on Sunday 6-4, 6-1 to make the quarterfinals of the US Open.

An injured Williams lost to Stephens in the quarterfinals of the Australian Open back in January.

The 32-year-old Williams dominated her service games while for the most part the 20-year-old Stephens struggled to hold in the one and 28-minute contest.

Both women held their own until 4-4 in the first set when Williams made a run taking eight of the next nine games.

“Well, you know, going into the match I definitely wanted to be focused the whole time,” Williams said.  “That’s all I wanted to do.  Whether I was going to win or lose, I just wanted to play my game and do well.”

It was a story of unforced errors for Stephens who committed 29 miscues during the match.

“The whole time I just tried to do what I wanted,” Williams said. “Stay calm, stay relaxed, stay composed.”

“Obviously she’s No. 1 in the world for a reason,” Stephens said.  I thought she played really well herself.  Obviously it didn’t go how I wanted.  The second set got away from me a little bit.

“All in all I thought I competed well and played well.  That’s all you can do really.”

Williams will play 18 seed Carla Suarez Navarro who upset 8 seed Angelique Kerber 4-6, 6-3, 7-6 (3).

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Serena Williams Beats Yaroslava Shvedova to Set Up Fourth Round Clash with Sloane Stephens

Serena Williams in Cincinnatti 2013

(August 31, 2013) FLUSHING MEADOWS, NY – In a match which ended at 1:05 in the morning, No. 1 Serena Williams beat No. 78 Yaroslava Shvedova of Kazakhstan 6-3, 6-1 to set up a fourth round match with Sloane Stephens at the US Open.

“I think it will be a good match,” Williams said. “I think she’s playing really well.  I’ll have a really tough match.

“I definitely don’t feel like I’m going in there as a favorite because she’s playing great, even though I’m playing good, too.  She really has nothing to lose and she excels in situations like that.  So I think she’ll be really good.

“I’ll just have to see how it goes.”

“It’s definitely been a learning experience from January till now,” Stephens said.  “I think I’ve had, you know, a lot of learning experiences.  I’ve had a great year.  I’m really pleased with the way it’s gone.

“Obviously it’s the last slam of the year.  You want to do as best you can.  All you can do is go out there and do your best.  Obviously, that’s it:  just go out and play hard, just see what happens.”

On the fallout from her interview with ESPN the Magazine, Stephens said: ”It’s definitely been a learning experience from January till now.  I think I’ve had, you know, a lot of learning experiences.  I’ve had a great year.  I’m really pleased with the way it’s gone.

“Obviously we’re coworkers, we’re Fed Cup teammates,” Stephens said when asked about the relationship.  “But other than that, everything else is private.  It’s fine.”

It will be American No. 1 versus American No. 2 for a spot in the quarterfinals at stake. “It will be good,” Williams said. “I definitely look forward to it.  Whatever happens, like I said, an American for sure will be in the quarterfinals, which is really good.  I think American women’s tennis is doing excellent.  I’m kind of excited about that.  It’s really, really exciting.”

“As I always say, I think it will be epic,“ Stephens said.  “I’m really looking forward to it.  See what happens.”

 

Related articles:

Sloane Stephens Criticizes Serena Williams in ESPN The Magazine Interview

Serena Williams Gives a Response to Maria Sharapova’s Comments

Maria Sharapova Takes Verbal Shot at Serena Williams in Regard to Recent Rolling Stone Article

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Sloane Stephens Stops Jamie Hampton for Spot in US Open Fourth Round

SloaneStephens

(August 30, 2013) FLUSHING MEADOWS, NY – Fifteen seed Sloane Stephens has moved into the fourth round of the US Open by dominating American countrywoman Jamie Hampton  the 23rd seed 6-1, 6-3.

The win gives Stephens a potential match-up against defending champion Serena Williams, who plays the night session on Friday.

“I think it will be a great match obviously if we do play,” Stephens said.  “We’ll probably play on Ashe.

“It’s something I think everyone is looking forward to.

The match between Stephens and Hampton marked the first time in Arthur Ashe Stadium that two American women under has played each other since the Williams sisters contested the 2002 final.

“I think that I’ve had tendencies, shown tendencies to play really bad in big moments,” Hampton said.  “Kind of sucks.  I’m incredibly, incredibly disappointed in the way I played today.

“Nerves, you know, I think I felt fine going out there.  Stadium is pretty big.  But I got to hit on it before.  I’ve played on Rod Laver and Indian Wells stadium a couple times, as well.  I don’t think that was too overwhelming.”

Stephens has earned a berth in at least the fourth round at all of the major tournaments this year. She reached the Australian open semifinals where she beat an ailing Serena Williams in the quarterfinals.

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Serena Williams Advances in Toronto

 

SerenaWilliamsFaceoff3 - Copy

(August 7, 2013) No. 1 Serena Williams opened her Rogers Cup campaign in Toronto with a 6-3, 6-2 win over Francesca Schiavone. Williams will try to get some sisterly revenge when she faces Kirsten Flipkens in the third round. Flipkens defeated Venus Williams in the first round.

“I felt good. I felt solid,” Williams said after the match. “I obviously made a few errors but it’s just my first match on hard (court) in a really long time. I also played a really good player, so it was a good match.”

Williams’ American countrywoman Sloane Stephens advanced besting Germany’s Mona Barthel 6-3, 4-6, 6-3.

“She’s obviously a really good player and played some really good points,” Stephens said of her opponent.  “Sometimes I think there was a couple of games where when she was serving and she would be down and she’d hit like an amazing first serve and first volley, so it was definitely tough.

“I thought I just had to kind of stick it out, and I was able to play some good points.”

Fourth seed Li Na of China sent Russia’s Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova out of the tournament  with a 6-1, 6-4 victory.

“I was feeling pretty good at least during the tournament, so I can move on,” Li said. “Of course first match always tough, because after Wimbledon I think three or four weeks didn’t play any tournaments.

 

ROGERS CUP
Toronto, Canada

August 5-11, 2013
$2,369,000/Premier
Hard/Outdoors

Results - Wednesday, August 7, 2013
Singles – Second Round
(1) Serena Williams (USA) d. Francesca Schiavone (ITA) 63 62
(4) Li Na (CHN) d. Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) 61 64
(5) Sara Errani (ITA) d. Klara Zakopalova (CZE) 62 76(2)
(6) Petra Kvitova (CZE) d. (WC) Eugenie Bouchard (CAN) 63 62
(7/WC) Marion Bartoli (FRA) d. (Q) Lauren Davis (USA) 60 63
Sorana Cirstea (ROU) d. (9) Caroline Wozniacki (DEN) 57 76(0) 64 (saved 2mp)
(10) Roberta Vinci (ITA) d. Ekaterina Makarova (RUS) 60 64
Alizé Cornet (FRA) d. (11) Maria Kirilenko (RUS) 75 75
(12) Samantha Stosur (AUS) d. Carla Suárez Navarro (ESP) 16 62 63
(13) Kirsten Flipkens (BEL) d. (Q) Kiki Bertens (NED) 75 36 62
(14) Sloane Stephens (USA) d. Mona Barthel (GER) 63 46 63
(15) Jelena Jankovic (SRB) d. (WC) Sharon Fichman (CAN) 64 76(6)
(16) Ana Ivanovic (SRB) d. Flavia Pennetta (ITA) 64 64
Magdalena Rybarikova (SVK) d. Varvara Lepchenko (USA) 64 62

Doubles – Second Round
(2) Makarova/Vesnina (RUS/RUS) d. Kudryavtseva/Rodionova (RUS/AUS) 64 64
(3) Groenefeld/Peschke (GER/CZE) d. Begu/Govortsova (ROU/BLR) 62 61
(4) Kops-Jones/Spears (USA/USA) d. Chan/Hrdinova (TPE/CZE) 64 62
Kalashnikova/Rosolska (GEO/POL) d. (5) Mirza/Zheng (IND/CHN) 36 61 106 (Match TB)

Doubles – First Round
(WC) Dabrowski/Fichman (CAN) d. (8) Pavlyuchenkova/Safarova (RUS/CZE) 64 67(5) 108 (Match TB)
Jankovic/Srebotnik (SRB/SLO) d. Cibulkova/Hsieh (SVK/TPE) 67(5) 61 102 (Match TB)

Order Of Play – Thursday, August 8, 2013
Centre Court (from 11.00am)
1. Agnieszka Radwanska vs. Sloane Stephens
2. Ana Ivanovic vs. Li Na (NB 13.00hrs)
3. Serena Williams vs. Kirsten Flipkens (NB 14.30hrs)
4. Petra Kvitova vs. Samantha Stosur (NB 19.00hrs)

Grandstand (from 11.00am)
1. Alizé Cornet vs. Sara Errani
2. Magdalena Rybarikova vs. Marion Bartoli
3. Jelena Jankovic vs. Sorana Cirstea (NB 14.00hrs)
4. Dominika Cibulkova vs. Roberta Vinci
5. Goerges/Zahlavova Strycova vs. Hantuchova/Hingis

Court 1 (from 14.00am)
1. Kalashnikova/Rosolska vs. Makarova/Vesnina
2. Klemenschits/Savchuk vs. Dabrowski/Fichman
3. Jankovic/Srebotnik vs. Huber/Llagostera Vives (after suitable rest)

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Round 4 Shock for Serena Williams at Wimbledon– Round up of the Centre Court Action

Serena-Williams-after-winning-3-of-3-e1355919788463

By Ros Satar

 

(July 1, 2013) WIMBLEDON – As if last Wednesday was not enough fun for the tennis gods, they toyed with the seemingly natural order of things just a little more on Round 4 Monday.

Possibly one of the best days usually on the tennis schedule, Wimbledon looks to put all their Round 4 matches on the same day, men and women.

It gives people who are still doing the queue a chance to see some action on the outside courts, if they miss out on those coveted bands for the show courts.

 

Sabine Lisicki [23] def. Serena Williams [1] 6-2, 1-6, 6-4
Let’s just make it competitive – that was probably the wish if every neutral observer watching the first match of the day on Centre Court.
I think I could be safe in saying that not many saw the first set coming – Serena Williams seemingly just content to put the ball in play – in fact with Lisicki being dragged to deuce in each service game, surely it was just Serena playing cat to Lisicki’s mouse.

It was just that the mouse was capable of thundering down booming serves that, had the opponent been anyone but Serena Williams, they would have been countless aces.

After taking the first set 6-2 it was almost as if Lisicki realised what she’d done, and to whom.
Certainly Williams turned the screw after he first game, winning the next nine on the trot, locking into her returns and many up in the lofty (and drafty) gods nodded their heads sagely and reckoned they had time for a quick burst of strawberries before Murray.

The second set and to be honest quite a lot of the third scooted past Lisicki as Williams reeled off nine games in a row.

But let’s face it, if you are going to break the world No. 1, you may as well wait until your back is against the wall.

Somewhat inconceivably, after a bunch of traded breaks Lisicki found herself ahead for the first time since the start of the second set.

Was it a nervy service game? – Well yes, of course it was, weaving from match point, to break point, to match point again, the crowds were oohing and aahing like it was a firework show.

The final rally was one to savour and the forehand winner saw Williams AND Lisicki sprawling – for different reasons, Williams at full stretch to get on the end of the eventual winner and Lisicki on realising she had put out the defending champion, and world no. 1.

Take absolutely nothing away from Lisicki, she has a superb game for grass, and she took those opportunities when they presented themselves.

Lisicki has reached the quarterfinals twice (2009, 2012) and the semifinals once (2011).

She faces Estonia’s Kaia Kanepi for the first time in Tuesday’s quarter-final.

 

Andy Murray [2] def. Mikhail Youzhny [20] 6-4, 7-6(5), 6-1

Murray has looked in good form, and many expected this to be a straight sets victory, but that was really only half the story.

From the outset, it was a more passive Murray that took to the court, content to build up points and push Youzhny to the error, and getting an early break to edge out the first set made it seem a formality.

There was always a feeling that if Youzhny suddenly dialled in, Murray could be in big trouble as the second set seemed to be counter-puncher heaven (or hell, depending on your point of view).

Each seemed to want to out-wait-for-the-error with Youzhny inducing a fair share from the Murray racquet.

More by luck than judgement, Murray took the tiebreak with the tightness of margins.

Even though Murray looks to be in discomfort for much of the second set, it was Youzhny that took the medical time out before the start of the third set.

Finally in the third set, Murray started to shorten the points and introduced a little more serve and volley – his reward being two breaks enough to seal the match.

He was sensible enough in press to acknowledge that this Wimbledon has seen a lot of shocks (to put it mildly).

Murray will face Fernando Verdasco in the quarter-final, and somehow made getting through another round without dropping a set seem like really hard work.

Nokak Djokovic [1] def. Tommy Haas [13] 6-1, 6-4, 7-6(4)
If the match before felt like a five-setter, Djokovic was on hand to remind us what a straight sets win actually looks like, at least in the first set,

That was little more than a rout but Haas seemed to get better as the match went in, as opposed to disheartened.

By the time he had forced a tiebreak in the third set, Haas was swinging free as Djokovic was slipping and sliding and one could only imagine the winces of the groundsmen as he slid this way and that (and yes, took the obligatory tumble).

Haas is nothing, if not a fighter, and as the light was beginning to fade, there was a very real chance this might have to be finished under the lights, had Haas forced a fourth set.

But there seem to be no chinks in Djokovic’s armour today – his returning, and movement is going to make him quite a formidable barrier for the remainder of the week.

Ros Satar is a British Journalist- an IT journalist by day, and a sports journalist in all the gaps in between. Follow her tournament updates on twitter @TennisNewsTPN. She is the co-founder of Britwatch Sports (britwatchsports.com). Follow her personal twitter at @rfsatar.

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