The semi-finals of the 2009 WTA Tour Championships in Doha promised to be an exciting day’s play with No.8 seed Jelena Jankovic and No.7 seed Venus Williams going to a 3rd and final set in 9 of their 10 previous encounters.
Caroline Wozniacki has fought long and hard this week battling her opponent’s and struggling with her physical condition. How she will fare against a fit and fired up Serena Williams?
The first semi final between Jankovic and Venus turned out to be another close fought 3 set match. Both women wore hot pink dresses but it was Jankovic who held the edge in head-to-head results leading in to this match and took the lead by taking the 1st set 7-5.
In a repeat of the 2008 semis in Doha where Venus won 6-3 in the final set the 29 year old American levelled the ledger at 5 wins each by winning the final 2 sets 6-3, 6-4. Jankovic the 24 year old Serbian earned 300,000 US dollars for her performances in Doha and has set herself up for an even better 2010 season.
Jankovic moves so well on the court and covers so much ground that she seemed to enjoy the running so much that she played so many balls directly to her bigger and stronger opponent. Venus (pictured above) is always going to go after her shots and hope that her winners versus her unforced errors fall in her favour. Jankovic needed to get Venus on the move more and off balance to increase the difficulty of her opponent’s attempts to hit winners.
Venus had the right mind set, attack at every opportunity and due to being able to stand still and take her time to execute her big ground strokes managed to keep her unforced errors down enough to win this match.
In the 2nd semi final Serena who won their only previous duel back in January 2008 in which Wozniacki held 3 match points was the huge favourite. As expected Wozniacki was very limited due to her physical condition and despite fighting out a 1st set loss 4-6 the 19 year old champion from Denmark and 1-0 in the 2nd set.
Wozniacki had a fantastic 2009 and has established herself in the top 4 in the world which means she would not meet Serena until the semi final stage or the final at the Australian Open 2010. If they can win through to set up a rematch it should be a great match up and with a fit Wozniacki the outcome could hang on a knife’s edge.
The 28 year old Serena notched up her 4th win against a top 8 ranked player this week to set up a rematch with last year’s Doha champion Venus whom she beat in the round robin in a 3rd set tie-break match. If Serena wins the final she will remain undefeated and take home 1,550,000 US dollars and 1,500 WTA ranking points. The runner-up will earn 780,000 US dollars.
The draw for Centre Court for the women’s singles final on Sunday November 1 is at not before 6:00pm.
(2) Serena Williams versus (7) Venus Williams
For further details about the WTA Tour Finals on this tennis website click this link -> WTA Tour Champion 2009: Oct 27-Nov 1.
© OnCourtAdvantage.com 2009
photo credit: y.caradec