Monday, February 9, 2009

The Amazing Disappearing Act of Mikhail Youzhny

Whatever happened to Mikhail Youzhny?
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I noticed this when I was at the Australian Open, actually, but there was so much else going on that I didn't give any more thought to it. A couple of years ago he was making major semis and beating Rafa and doing all kinds of things, including accidentally smashing his head open with his own tennis racquet. Now - where is he?
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It's kind of silly to ask the second he turns up again - he had a first round win against a qualifier in Rotterdam. But seriously, has he been injured? He lost first round at the Aussie - I can't remember who to, but I was surprised. Has he just been out of form? He's certainly taken a dive down the rankings - I'm not sure exactly where he fits in now, but he's unseeded in Rotterdam, and he was certainly unseeded at the Australian Open. That certainly never used to be the case. I can't remember him ever actually making it into the top ten, but he was certainly up there in the #11, #12 region for a while, and I remember him being the Russian #2 (behind Davydenko) was a long time. He's definitely behind both Safin and Tursunov now - oh, and Andreev, and maybe even Kunitsyn and Gabashvili. Anyone know what went down with him?
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And in the women's side, the mysterious one has got to Agnes Szavay. I heard all these good things about her last year, and yet every name her name pops up, it seems to be a first round loss. So what's going on there?
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Today's Results
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ABN Amro World Tennis Tournament (Rotterdam)
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Julien Benneteau def. Feliciano Lopez, 6-4 5-7 6-2
Mikahil Youzhny def. Laurent Recouderc, 6-4 6-4
Dmitry Tursunov def. Arnaud Clement, 6-0 6-3
Nikolay Davydenko def. Igor Andreev, 6-3 6-2
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SAP Open (San Jose)
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Florent Serra def. Jarkko Nieminen, 7-5 6-7 (1-7) 6-4
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Movistar Open (Vina del Mar)
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Fernando Gonzalez def. Jose Acasuso, 6-1 6-3
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Open GDF SUEZ (Paris)
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Li Na def. Agnes Szavay, 7-6 (8-6) 6-2
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PTT Pattaya Open (Pattaya City)
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Peng Shuai def. Mara Santangelo, 3-6 5-2 retired
Vera Dushevina def. Elena Bovina, 6-4 7-5
Galina Voskoboeva def. Jarmila Groth, 4-6 6-2 6-1
Ksenia Pervak def. Tomoko Yonemura, 6-1 6-1

2 comments:

TopSpin said...

Its funny, I was thinking the exact same thing about Youzhny a few days back. It's a little like Baghdatis, still don't understand how he nosedived to 100 I think, in such a short space of time.

As to Szavay, I loved her win over Jankovic in 2007 (Beijing I think). and along with Radwanska thought she was a certain top tenner.

I know it's a little trite, but the weekly toil of remaining at the top really is a completely different animal than the journey you make to get there in the first place...

allineedisapicketfence said...

Youzhny's never been the same since that racket smashing incident. Seems to have lost his mojo a little bit hasn't he? It's a pity because he really is quite a unique player. I find his drop in form inexplicable too.

As for Szavay, she's still hanging in there. The problem with the women's field is that there really isn't much of a difference between someone ranked No 25 and someone ranked No 60 at the moment, so you get a lot of first round "upsets" with girls like Szavay and Radwanska, who are still technically Tier II, but on the brink of moving up into the top 10.