OPEN GDF SUEZ
YES! I’m jazzed! Jubuliant! Joyful! I can’t believe that Amelie Mauresmo pulled off the win this week at the Open GDF SUEZ in Paris. I was hoping for it, but didn’t really believe that the mentally fragile Frenchwoman could pull it off. And she won it by beating two of the toughest fighters in the game – Jelena Jankovic in the semis and Elena Dementieva in the final.
If you didn’t see it, you MUST catch this match on your DVR or on the subsequent Tennis Channel replays. I think it was one of the best women’s matches of the year so far – both women played at top level and honestly, it’s pure tennis snob bliss watching Amelie hit that one handed backhand corner to corner, serve and volley, and play the touch shots at net.
I’m scared to jinx her, but I think this win might get her to push for that third major title. With Serena lamely pulling out of the tournament with surprise knee injury (why does the tournament have the players do that sh*t-eating routine in front of the crowd when they withdraw – skulk away in shame and be done with it), Ivanovic in a downward spiral and Maria Sharapova iffy to the extreme, could this be the year Amelie pulls off the miracle at Roland Garros? She does seem to be gaining confidence and form (especially after last week’s dismal Fed Cup performance) and she’s learned to use the home crowd to her advantage. And it was great to see the postive emotion throughout and the tears afterwards – this woman wants desperately to be back at the top.
Congrats to Cara Black and Fed-Cup star Liezel Huber for winning their first title of the season, playing Kveta Peschke/Lisa Raymond in the championship match.
Meanwhile, in Thailand. . .
PTT PATTAYA OPEN
Vera Zvonareva, who I consider to be the Kolya Davydenko of the Russian women (due to general under-the-radar stature and nose-to-the-grindstone style of play) nabbed the PTT Pattaya Open title in Thailand this weekend. She beat a resurgent Sania Mirza, who is coming back after an injury-ridden 2008 and is currently ranked in the 120s in singles. Nice to see Sania back in the game. Maybe the mixed doubles title she won a couple weeks ago Down Under with Mahesh Bhupathi gave her some confidence.
The Thais had a lot to cheer for in the doubles final, as home girl Tamarine Tanasugarn took the title with partner Yaroslava Shvedova, beating Yuliya Beygelzimer and Vitalia Diatchenko 6-3, 6-2.
The whirlwind continues, with tournaments in Dubai (outdoor hardcourt), a combined ATP/WTA tournament in Memphis (indoor hardcourt) and Bogata (clay) this week. Dubai is the big one, with the Williams sisters, Safina, Ivanovic, etc. all slated to play. Amelie Mauresmo has withdrawn and Shahar Peer has been denied a visa by the UAE.
Open GDF Suez photo: from the tournament website
Pattaya photo: CHRISTOPHE ARCHAMBAULT/AFP/Getty Images via Yahoo Sports