I want to say 'this hasn't been your year', but you know what? It has been her year. She's reached two Slam finals and become world number #1, which is, really, when you think about it, not too shabby. But the pressure and her own temperament have worked against her, and... perhaps it's better this way. Perhaps it's better that she's injured and doesn't take part rather than suffering more humiliating defeats.
Go away, Dinara. Rest. Recuperate. Heal. Work on your serve. Enjoy your time away from the public eye. Because I want you to defend those damn points you earned in Australia, and I want you to do even better. Because I know you can. Get better, Dina.
In other matches, we won't be seeing any defending champion action, as Serena put paid to Venus's hopes, giving big sister V two losses. Oh well. Serena's got to be the favourite to win this tournament, even with the whole US Open drama still hanging over her head... and she's delivered thus far, with two solid wins.
But the match of the day was the battle of the teen queens, Azarenka and Wozniacki, who duked it out over three epic sets. Though I have to say Azarenka's style of play appeals to me more and I like her grit, I'm glad Wozniacki won, because even though she plays pretty vanilla tennis, I've never seen her throw a tantrum on court like Vika. And I'm not big on tantrums. (Have I harped enough on my dislike for Azarenka?)
I wouldn't be surprised to see these two teen queens be the semi final qualifiers from this group, so it'll be interesting to see what happens if they meet again in this tournament. This rivalry is going to be a very interesting one down the years...
(Oh, and in the men - remember them? - not only did Marat win, but my homeboy Ernests Gulbis upset fourth seed Jeremy Chardy. I'm even more convinced that we're coming to the light at the end of the tunnel there...!)
Sony Ericsson Championships (Doha)
Jelena Jankovic def. Dinara Safina, 1-1 retired
Serena Williams def. Venus Williams, 5-7 6-4 7-6 (7-4)
Caroline Wozniacki def. Victoria Azarenka, 1-6 6-4 7-5
St Petersburg Open (St Petersburg)
Marat Safin def. Richard Gasquet, 7-6 (7-5) 6-4
Mikhail Youzhny def. Andrey Golubev, 6-3 6-2
Igor Kunitsyn def. Pablo Cuevas, 6-4 6-3
Horacio Zeballos def. Oleksandr Dolgopolov Jr, 6-3 6-1
Victor Hanescu def. Illya Marchenko, 6-3 6-4
Ernests Gulbis def. Jeremy Chardy, 7-6 (9-7) 6-3
Bjorn Phau def. Andreas Beck, 6-4 2-1 retired
Bank Austria Tennis Trophy (Vienna)
Daniel Koellerer def. Jarkko Nieminen, 6-1 6-2
Gael Monfils def. Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, 7-5 6-4
Janko Tipsarevic def. John Isner, 7-6 (7-4) 6-4
Dominik Hrbaty def. Ruben Ramirez Hidalgo, 6-3 6-4
Radek Stepanek def. Frederico Gil, 6-2 6-3
Nicolas Almagro def. Wayne Odesnik, 6-4 6-4
Philipp Kohlschreiber def. Victor Crivoi, 6-2 6-0
Grand Prix de Tennis de Lyon (Lyon)
Gilles Simon def. Simone Bolelli, 7-6 (7-5) 7-6 (7-5)
Nicolas Kiefer def. Sebastien Grosjean, 4-6 7-6 (9-7) 7-6 (7-2)
Olivier Rochus def. Vincent Millot, 6-3 602
Paul-Henri Mathieu def. Leonardo Mayer, 7-6 (7-5) 6-2
Julien Benneteau def. Kevin Anderson, 7-5 6-2
1 month ago