The wonderful wizardry of Woz
Former World No 1 is in the French Open quarter-finals after huge win
CAROLINE Wozniacki moved a step closer to erasing an unwanted footnote from the list of her tennis achievements with victory over Svetlana Kuznetsova in the French Open fourth round yesterday.
Wozniacki is that rare beast: a twice year-end world No 1-ranked tennis player who has never won a Grand Slam.
There have been others but none who reigned so long at world No 1 – 67 weeks – without success on the Grand Slam stage.
Yesterday the Dane beat Kuznetsova, a player with two Grand Slam titles in the bag but who has never scaled the women’s rankings to the very top.
The 6-1, 4-6, 6-2 victory eased Wozniacki into the quarter-finals at Roland Garros, matching her best performance here in 2010.
“Obviously it’s just kind of clicking this week,” Wozniacki,
smiled. “Hopefully I can keep going this way. Now I just try and stay focused and keep my head down.”
Wozniacki streaked into the lead on a sun-baked Philippe Chatrier court, running away with the first set as 2009 champion Kuznetsova struggled with her range.
Eighth seed Kuznetsova soon struck back to level matters, using her weight of shot to overpower the Dane.
Kuznetsova was always likely to hit the big winners but they were too few, and errors more plentiful, as Wozniacki grabbed two early breaks in the decider.
The 11th seed, her luminous green racquet a rapier to Kuznetsova’s broadsword, eased into a 3-0 lead but after a few meaty swings Kuznetsova broke back.
It was only a temporary reprieve for the Russian, though, and Wozniacki reasserted her control, pummelling a twofisted backhand down the line to win the match.
“Yeah, it was definitely a good win,” she said. “Svetlana obviously plays really well on this surface. I knew it was going to be a tough match going in. “I started off really, really well. My game plan was working and kind of kept her on her toes with putting in some dropshots and mixing up the pace.
“I knew it wasn’t going to be easy. I knew that she was going to try to fight her way back. She did in the second set, but I managed to close it off in three, which I’m happy about.”
Wozniacki next faces either 2010 runner-up Sam Stosur or Jelena Ostapenko for a spot in the semi-finals.
“Definitely two tough opponents, two very different opponents. Sam loves the clay. She’s had great results here in the past.
“Either one is going to be tough. Ostapenko goes for her shots and plays flat. When she’s on fire, she’s tough.”
Meanwhile, defending champion Garbine Muguruza of Spain was knocked out of the French Open when she lost 6-1, 3-6, 6-3 in the fourth round against France’s Kristina Mladenovic yesterday.
Mladenovic will play either Venus Williams or Timea Bacsinszky in the quarters. serves as an illustration of the basic goodness at the heart of us all. It’s in surrendering to the forces of ego and greed that everything falls apart.
In an era which demands instant gratification, which eschews the tenet of toil, Totti’s career for Roma, as the quintessential oneclub man, is a towering example of how loyalty is remembered and rewarded, and how it leaves a legacy that will stand the test of time.
Totti arrived at Roma as a junior at the age of 12; he made his Italian Serie A debut at 16. Last week, when it was all over, the 40-year-old received a farewell that was a fitting, emotional and spectacular tribute for the 28 years of service to his beloved Roma.
It’s an approach to life and football that’s India’s Virat Kohli’s 81 not out of 108 balls steered his team to a massive 319/3 off 48 overs in a rain effected innings against Pakistan at Edgbaston in Birmingham yesterday in their ICC Champions Trophy match. He was ably aided by Rohit Sharma’s 91 of 119 balls, 65 ball 68 from Shikhar Dhawan and Yuvraj Singh 53 off 49 balls. The inclement weather continued to have its say, however, and the Pakistan target was recalculated to a chase of 289 of 41 overs after play was delayed twice. Nevertheless, Pakistan crumbled under the immense pressure, and were duly bowled out for 164, with Azhar Ali (50 of 65 balls) and Mohammad Hafeez (33 of 43 ball) putting up the only resistance in a ruthless Indian display. India won the Group B encounter, which South Africa is also apart of, by 124 runs on the Duckworth-Lewis method and top the pool, ahead of the Proteas, on net run-rate.