Pilot Pen Tennis (10)

Coverage from the combined ATP/WTA event in New Haven, Connecticut, USA, August 21-29, 2009.

Saturday, 29 August 2009 04:00

Pilot Pen Wrap-up, Saturday, August 29th

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Caroline Wozniacki and Elena Vesnina at the 2009 Pilot Pen Tennis TournamentMen’s Semifinals

With the rains continuing in New Haven, CT, tournament organizers were forced to move the men’s singles semifinals indoors today, as they did for the women’s semifinals yesterday evening. The setting once again was the Cullman-Heyman indoor tennis courts on the campus of Yale University. Fortunately, the matches were not played simultaneously, as were yesterday’s, so the players had fewer distractions, and the spectators that waited out weather delays were able to watch both contests.

In the first semifinal, Sam Querrey, the sixth seed, eliminated unseeded José Acasuso. As he has all week, Querrey dominated on serve. He delivered eleven aces, faced only one break point in the match, and lost only five points on serve in the second set. While the American possesses a powerful first serve, it’s the variety of his delivery that has made him so successful this week. Querrey’s been able to move the placement of his serve around the box, and the mixture of the shot has confounded his opponents. Acasuso was successful on his own serve early in the second set, but was broken when serving at 4-4. After the Argentine smashed his racquet, he was given a warning for racquet abuse by Chair Umpire Ali Nili. Just a few minutes later, Querrey successful held serve, and earned a spot in the final.
Caroline Wozniacki at the 2009 Pilot Pen Tennis TournamentYour nightmares might consist of dreaming about having to take a test that you didn’t study for, where you know nothing about the topic. Or maybe falling, falling, falling, before waking suddenly in a sweat. Or perhaps you’re in a crowd of people and find yourself without any clothes. Pilot Pen Tennis Tournament Director Anne Worcester’s nightmare? Well, she just lived through it. And it may not be over.

The rains started early at the Connecticut Tennis Center this morning, more than an hour before play was scheduled to begin at 12:00 pm on the Stadium Court.
Friday, 28 August 2009 04:00

Pilot Pen Wrap-up, Friday, August 28th

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2009 Pilot Pen TennisSummary of Friday’s (lack of) Pilot Pen action:

As rain played havoc with the semifinals, tournament officials moved the doubles action indoors to the Cullman-Heyman Tennis Center at Yale University. There is limited capacity at the indoor facility, so the tournament is still hoping to keep the singles action on the Stadium Court of the Connecticut Tennis Center.

Incidentally, with a seating capacity of 15,000, the Stadium Court here is tied with Wimbledon's as the third largest tennis stadium in the world in terms of capacity.
Thursday, 27 August 2009 04:00

Pilot Pen Wrap-up, Thursday, August 27th

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Elena Vesnina at the 2009 Pilot Pen Tennis TournamentWomen’s Quarterfinal: (8) A. Mauresmo def. (1) S. Kuznetsova, 7-6 (9), 2-6, 6-3

Thursday evening’s marquee matchup lived up to its billing, as a pair of two-time Grand Slam singles champions squared off for a spot in the Pilot Pen semifinals. While Svetlana Kuznetsova is the top seed, and currently ranked No. 6 in the world, she struggled with her form in the opening two rounds. By contrast, Amélie Mauresmo looked on form in dispatching Alona Bondarenko 6-1, 6-1 in the second round. The crowd eagerly awaited this match-up.

Early on, it looked like it could be a one-sided affair; Kuznetsova was up 3-0 after just ten minutes of play. Mauresmo said later that she thought this early deficit was the result of trying to play too tactically, rather than just “feeling” her game and going for shots. Mauresmo broke back in the seventh game, and held off two break points to pull to 4-4, then had to serve a marathon game at 5-6. Amélie fended off a set point, survived five deuces, and forced a tiebreak. On the strength of her forehand, Kuznetsova had a 6-3 edge in the breaker, but Mauresmo erased the set points. Serving at 8-9, Mauresmo carved a backhand slice winner that barely bounced up from the court, followed by a topspin backhand down-the-line winner, and suddenly found herself at set point. She capitalized when Kuznetsova’s backhand sailed deep, and the Frenchwoman was the improbable owner of the first set, despite Kuznetsova’s 20-to-10 edge in winners.
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