Category: WTA

Bianca Andreescu – the new WTA sensation

The WTA competition is becoming more and more surprising. A number of young players have actually caught the attention of the public, to the detriment of the already famous ones. It all started last year, when the almost unknown Naomi Osaka won the Indian Wells title. Then, the young Japanese had a drop in shape, but she again appeared in the spotlight at the US Open, where she managed to win the trophy. After another less productive period, Naomi won the next Grand Slam in Melbourne.

In 2019, history seems to repeat itself, and it all starts at Indian Wells, again. Young Canadian Bianca Andreescu received a wild card from California organizers. Even though Bianca had had good results in the first two months of the season, absolutely no one expected her to reach the final. The absolute surprise was that young Bianca managed to win the trophy in front of much more experienced Angelique Kerber. All this at only 18 years old. She thus managed to climb not only in the 24th place in the world, but also in the third place in the tennis prize money list for 2019, so far.

Obviously, the performance is absolutely extraordinary. On the other hand, at only 18 years, Bianca Andreescu still has a long time to prove she will be a top tennis player. Recent history tells us that there are notable disappointments: Jelena Ostapenko did not had much success after her Roland Garros victory, while Eugenie Bouchard became an anonymous player. What will be in the future depends only on Bianca.

Bianca with the Indian Wells trophy

Who is Bianca Andreescu?

Many people wonder, rightly, who is this young player who has taken up the world of tennis. She was born in Mississauga, Canada, in a Romanian family. Her parents returned to Romania, where Bianca started tennis at the age of 7-8 years. Then the family relocated to Canada, Bianca continuing tennis at the National Training Program in Toronto. In 2016, Simona Halep encouraged her (the link is in Romanian) to become a professional player as fast as possible. Actually, her idols in tennis are Simona Halep and Kim Clijsters. Therefore, Bianca switched to professional tennis at only 16 years old. Now, it looks like the right choice.

With an aggressive style of play and a very powerful serve, Bianca reminds us somehow of Serena Williams. The only possible handicap would be the height, as she is not very tall at only 1.70 m. On the mental level, she is already at the level of top players, a special thing for her young age. Besides, Bianca practices daily meditation, something that I think will become more and more common in the future, for all tennis players.

It remains to be seen if the 2019 Indian Wells will drive another young player to the world’s first place. Everything is possible, but it also matters how Bianca will deal with the new wave of publicity and attention from the media.

Maria Sharapova to Feature at the Kremlin Cup 2017

Maria Sharapova has been given the opportunity to compete at the WTA Kremlin Cup. Only a few days ago, the possibility of the Russian featuring in front of her fans in Moscow looked unlikely. A wildcard entry was the possibility for Sharapova to feature in this event, and it seemed that the organisers were not ready to let Sharapova back into the tournament. The 31-year-old last competed in the event back in 2007. She has not been in a WTA event at home for a decade now.

The five-time Grand Slam champion was able to get back to her best after winning the Tianjin Open. Even though Sharapova faced a disappointment at the China Open, the Russian was able to claim Tianjin Open. This was her first WTA title in two years and this seems to have played a huge role in convincing the organisers to grant her a wildcard entry. In the past, Sharapova has played at the Kremlin Cup only on three occasions. In two of those appearances, she was able to reach the quarter-finals of the event. Apart from featuring one of the former greats, the Kremlin Cup 2017 will also witness other Russian stars like Margarita Gasparyan and Alisa Kleybanova get back to action.

Kleybanova his coming back from several injury problems that have prevented her from building on the 20th spot in the world rankings, which is her highest ever position. Gasparyan, meanwhile, was able to hit a career-high 41st ranking back in February. However, she has spent a long spell on the sidelines due to a number of injury problems and surgeries.

Wuhan Open 2017 – Halep is back, looking for #1 – Preview & Live Streaming

This is a young and big tournament in the WTA circuit. It started in 2014, with Petra Kvitova winning the first edition and also the third one. This will be the fourth edition of the Wuhan Open, with almost every top player present at the start, the only big absence being Elina Svitolina.
The fight for the world’s number one rank is still ongoing, with Muguruza having the chance to widen the gap between her and Halep and with Pliskova also looking to gain more points.

For Halep, this will be a tough one: she needs to defend 350 ranking points (that means reaching the semifinals), but if she wins and Garbine is sent off in the early rounds, she will finally become #1 – Halep will add 550 points. If Halep is defeated in the early rounds and Pliskova advances, the Romanian will drop to number 3. Very complicated.

For live streaming, you can go to WTA TV (paid) but you can also check Tennisfans.tv for free live streams.

The players to look out for in Wuhan are, in fact, Caroline Wozniacki and Jelena Ostapenko. The Danish won her first title of the year in Tokyo and also defeated Muguruza in a categoric manner (6-2, 6-0), while Ostapenko won in Seoul, with the mention that the Latvian faced only players outside the Top 50. Even so, snatching a second career title (after a Grand Slam!) must be a morale boost for the young Jelena.

The prize money/points for Wuhan:
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US Open: Coco Vandeweghe vs Madison Keys Preview, Odds, Live Streaming Info

The second all-American semifinal at the US Open will star Coco Vandeweghe and Madison Keys, both players being for the second time in their careers in a Grand Slam semifinal. One of them, though, will get through the final.

Live Streaming
First of all, Coco Vandeweghe vs Madison Keys live streaming will be available on tennisfans.tv – as I mentioned in the previous post, this is the only site not suffocated with ads and popups. They do not updated so often, but this week they had working live links for all the matches.

Vandeweghe is at her second Grand Slam semifinal this year. She had a great start of the season, reaching the last four at the Australian Open, then she faded away on both hard, clay and grass season. Her form began to improve again in August, when she reached the final in Stanford (lost to Madison Keys) but again she could not maintain a steady line and fell to Radwanska (Rogers Cup) and again to Keys in Cincinnati. She got into the semifinals by defeating the #1 seed Karolina Pliskova.

Madison Keys had a normal season so far, with one title win (in Stanford) and medium performances at the other tournaments. This match is, by far, the most important for her in the whole 2017 season, as she seems to play very well against Vandeweghe (the two met twice last month, with Keys victorious).

Odds
Madison Keys is credited with the first chance, at 1.71 (71% return of investment), while Vandeweghe is at 2.15 (115% return), odds which indicate a pretty tight match.

“I’m Happy and Healthy” – Radwanska after Tying the Knot

After a decisive victory over Coco Vandeweghe at the Rogers Cup Agnieszka Radwanska made it clear she was well past her injury-related struggles of the 2017 season with a strong positive start in the US Open Series.
Following her victory over Coco Vandeweghe in Toronto, the 2014 Rogers Cup champion Agnieszka Radwanska spoke about her struggles with injury, getting married and launching her new biography.
She revealed that in addition to tennis-related injuries, she had also had to be treated for viral infections and weight loss. When Wimbledon was over she had required injections and further treatment for an injury on her foot which had persisted for over a year.
The news has not been all bad though. Radwanska married longtime boyfriend and hitting partner, Dawid Celt. Their wedding was attended by fellow WTA stars Angelique Kerber and Caroline Wozniacki.

“I had a really good wedding planner,” Radwanska said of the wedding, “so I can thank her for doing everything for me. I didn’t have to do much. I got to wear sneakers at the end of the wedding, so I went from high heels, then lower and lower, to finally running shoes!”
Regarding her newly released biography, Radwanska said she wanted it to be as clear a portrayal of her life as possible. “I just wanted to show people my personality, on and off the court, and how difficult this life is,” she said, “I think some people can’t really imagine how it is to be here. It’s not
about one match, but the whole day you spend working towards it and all the time since we were kids. I was trying to explain everything in the book, what pro sports are really like from every angle. I didn’t avoid any questions because I wanted to be honest about everything.”

Katerina Siniakova Takes the Swedish Open title From Injured Caroline Wozniacki

Caroline Wozniacki was handicapped with an injury on the Sunday final for the Swedish Open and lost it to Katerina Siniakova.
This would be the second career title Siniakova, ranked at 56, and was also playing with injury problems of her own. Capitalizing on Wozniacki’s deprived serves, she managed to seal her victory 6-3, 6-4.
Siniakova later said, “I couldn’t imagine a better week. I’m so happy that I won. I was just enjoying the game.”
Meanwhile, Wozniacki has now lost her fifth final of 2017 in straight sets just like the previous four. Since the time she was the world No. 1 in 2011, she has been gunning for her first title on the clay court and 26th in her entire career. However, the injury had plagued both players and it seems Wozniacki had a little more to worry about than her opponent.
“It was a tough match,” Wozniacki said of the final. “Katerina played very well.” Both she and Siniakova had to take medical timeouts after the first set. Siniakova had to examine her right arm and Wozniacki, her left wrist.
Wozniacki played well to go a break up at 3-1, her next two service games exploited her injury terribly and she ended up losing both and affording Siniakova a distinct advantage.
It was second time’s the charm for Siniakova with this year’s Swedish Open final after losing last year’s title to Laura Siegemund of Germany.

Mattek-Sands Screams in Agony During Wimbledon 2017

World 103 Bethanie Mattek-Sands was badly involved in one of the most horrific scenes in professional Tennis. It happened during a match in the second round against Sorana Cirstea. Mattek-Sands suffered an extremely nasty fall and it was not a pretty sight for all who were watching.
The injury was to her right knee and considered a freak consequence of the fall. However, as the match had just gone into the third set, the 32-year-old American fell to the ground in while holding onto her leg in a state of perpetual agony. The screams pain shot through everyone in the vicinity.
Cirstea was quick to respond, racing over the net to aid her stricken opponent. Mattek-Sands was reportedly screaming “F**k, help me, help me” which was enough to give most people an indication of what she was going through.
Looking back at the incident, Cirstea said: “I think the kneecap, it was out. I’m not a doctor, I’m not a specialist. I’ve never seen anything like this, but it wasn’t in a normal position.”
Medics quickly arrived on the scene and spent some 25 minutes treating Mattek-Sands who was squirming on the ground. Her husband, Justin and Doubles partner Lucie Safarova were also present.
In a statement to the press regarding the incident, the All-England club said “The first response to Court 17 was within 1 minute, by a qualified ambulance technician. The player was kept on the court while pain relief was given. The player was then transferred directly to an ambulance and taken under emergency conditions to a hospital.”
Mattek-Sands will have to go through more scans and treatment for her knee to recover.