Heeey Rowan here, I told Paula I was gonna post something about the Auckland WTA and ATP tournaments, which took place just before the Aussie Open, then I forgot, then I remembered, so here you go.
We had a great field for the women’s tournament this year, with Sharapova, Kuznetsova and Safina all coming for the first time. Defending champ Yanina Wickmayer was there too, and she got Safina in the first round, ouch, but she came through in a good three setter. Kuz lost to Peng Shuai (happy Chinese New Year everyobdy!) in the second round and Sharapova lost to Greta Arn (who?) in the quarters, but it was nice to see them live and in person. Poor old Maria, she’ll always have that never give up attitude but she still has some big issues with her game. Plus sexy German Julia Goerges was wearing the same outfit as Maria and filled it out better than she did. Not Maria’s week.
Lots of sightings of Alize Cornet and her nose which made me happy. She came back from a set and 2-5 down to win her first round match in three sets, screaming things in French all the way. She lost to Goerges in the second round but then made the semis in the doubles, where she was nice enough to lose to hometown Kiwi Marina Erakovic. Merci Alizé, à la prochaine.
In the end Greta Arn (who?) won the whole tournament (what?) beating Wickmayer in the final. See if something like this happened in professional wrestling, I mean an unknown midcarder getting a series of impressive upset victories, then you can bet the matchmakers in the back would have a plan for this person. This would be the beginning of what we wrestling fans call a push, the first step on Greta Arn’s road to becoming a championship contender. But unfortunately tennis is not like wrestling, and this Greta Arn victory will probably not lead to anything at all. This is part one in a twelve part series called Why Wrestling Is Almost Better Than Tennis. Nah I’m just playing. Twelve parts is too much.
In the men’s tournament we had Ferrer, Nalbandian, Isner, Robredo and other solid guys. Nalbandian looked really good all week, he dismantled John Isner’s giant serve and deconstructed Nicolas Almagro’s fiery one handed backhand. But then he forgot how to play tennis in the final against Ferrer and lost 63 62, it was a bit of a let down. See if this was wrestling, Ferrer and Nalbandian would have put on a 45 minute best two out of three falls classic. The young top ten lion Ferrer would have won in the end, but not without a heck of a battle. Nalbandian’s valiant losing effort (during which he would have got busted open and bled all over the ring, and the referee would have said, David I'm gonna have to stop it, but Nalby would have shouted DON'T YOU DARE STOP THIS MATCH, and Ferrer would have been reluctant to keep beating up on his wounded opponent, but Nalby would have slapped his face and told him to bring it, and then they would have wrestled another twenty minutes until Ferrer finally eked out the win) would have done more for his standing than any victory, as he would have won the hearts of the fans and shown that he is on his way back to the top ten and one final shot at the world heavyweight championship that has eluded him throughout his storied career. Or at least a run with the tag team championships. I mean Davis Cup.
Happy 2011 everybody! It's gonna be a good season, I can feel it.