We’ve been treated to some riveting tennis so far at the WTA’s year ending championships in Doha.
Was today’s meeting between Vera Zvonareva and Caroline Wozniacki a tennis match or medieval torture porn? The blood poured (literally) in the second set, when Vera Zvonareva took a 5 minute medical timeout to treat a bloody nose. The Russian, who is subbing for her injured countrywoman Dinara Safina, continued the match with a wad of gauze stuffed in one nostril.
Wozniacki seemed firmly in control. At 6-0, 5-2, she was in the reverse situation from her come-from-behind win against Victoria Azarenka yesterday. But today it was Vera who found a second (first?) wind, fighting past two match points and winning the second set tiebreak. In the third set, it was Wozniacki calling for the trainer (twice) to work on her cramping legs.
The drama hit a fever pitch in the last game of the match. Serving at 30-15, Wozniacki collapsed onto the court sobbing and writhing in pain. With shades of Shuzo Matsuoka, Wozniacki wasn’t able to call the trainer (having used the maximum time-outs allowed in a set for one medical condition) and the chair umpire warned her for taking too much time. Rather than default, Wozniacki hobbled to her feet and asked the ball kids for the balls.
A couple rallies later, the tears of pain were mixed with tears of relief. Wozniacki won the match: 6-0, 6-7 (3), 6-4.
“I have absolutely no idea how I pulled it through, but I’m very happy about it.” Caroline said afterwards. (via Metro News.)
If you missed it, here’s some video of Wozniacki’s collapse:
And match point:
In other Doha Day 3 action, Serena Williams beat Elena Dementieva 6-2, 6-4. Today’s win cements Serena’s spot in the semifinals and gives her sister a chance to advance if she beats Kuznetsova in today’s last match (they’re tied at a set each, currently.)
Tomorrow’s line up in Doha:
1. Caroline Wozniacki vs. Jelena Jankovic
2. Svetlana Kuznetsova vs. Elena Dementieva
3. Vera Zvonareva vs. Victoria Azarenka
Click here for the Doha TV Schedule.