2010 US Open: The Ladies’ Final Preview


U S Open 2010 D9 07/09/10 Kim Clijsters (BEL) wins first set in quarterfinal match Photo Anne Parker Fotosports International Photo via Newscom U S Open 2010 D10 08/09/10 Vera Zvonareva (RUS) wins quarter final match Photo Anne Parker Fotosports International Photo via Newscom

Who would have believed it?

Vera Zvonareva gets to her second successive Grand Slam final.

She’s flown under the radar. She allowed Wozniacki and her shorter-than-short dress steal the limelight; she warms up in sweatpants and a jacket despite the sweltering heat and now she has knocked out the Danish sweetheart without so much as a by-your-leave.

Vera Zvonareva, you are going places and how!

Caroline Wozniacki found the pressure of expectations too much to handle and caved in to a much calmer, much hotter  (in terms of the tennis) Vera on a day of one upset and two disappointments at the US Open 2010.

Quote of the day: The price one pays for pursuing any profession or calling is an intimate knowledge of its ugly side. – James Baldwin

The men’s doubles final saw the Indo-Pak express, Bopanna and Qureishi, unable to punch above their weight and lose in straight sets to the top seeds, the Bryan brothers. A huge disappointment for Indian and Pakistani fans.

Then it was the turn of Vera Zvonareva to remind Wozniacki, the male fan’s delight, that ‘Darling, on court, it’s the play that wins you matches, not the absurdity you term an outfit’.

Woznacki might consider fashionista Kournikova her mannequin idol; verily she should remain mindful of the fact that Anna has precious little to display in her trophy cabinet despite male pulses racing each time she took to the tennis court. She preferred being the trophy instead – harsh judgment call.

Zvonareva decided to take her Wimbledon loss to heart and really focus on just staying out there. As she later remarked “you have to play, sometimes, ugly,” and that she did. Ugly, maybe.Effective, sure.

In the other semi-final , when the error-prone Venus marched to a first set lead ,the home supporters must have counted on being able to make an early return  to their cosy apartments or hotel rooms to a cup of hot chocolate.They were to be let down sorely.

Clijsters had other ideas. She withstood the Williams pressure and let Venus do what she does best (or worst) – wilt and make all those unforced errors.

Clijsters walked away the victor 4-6, 7-6 (2), 6-4. This extends her winning streak to 20 at the US Open. That is some record.

This is the same Kimmy who, until her US Open victory in 2005, despaired that she would ever win a Grand Slam. Contrast that with her fellow compatriot Henin’s  illustrious career. But then , the early bird doesn’t always get the worm.

Clijsters can make it her third successive US Open title in as many appearances since 2005.

But there’s still the little matter of a Muscovite named Vera to deal with. Mind you, Vera hasn’t dropped a set en route to the finals.

She’s been low-key not off-key; too many reminders from the press about her tendency to melt down following crucial losses.

Clijsters’ stats read 5-2 against Zvonareva but those two defeats have been the more recent match-ups. It was Vera who did for Clijsters at this year’s Wimbledon.

On Super Saturday, it will simply be a matter of who can hold their nerve best.

Kim Clijsters has looked cool ,composed even nerveless; there has been an air of inevitability about her progress to the title match. Nonetheless, her game and service has not been as fluid as she would have wished it to be.

Vera, however, is red-hot but so not the crowd favourite.

Clijsters is the seasoned campaigner.Vera has been on the big stage before.

Can Zvonareva hold her end up and pretend it’s just another day at the office?

Or will it be the more experienced Clijsters who will shoo away the last spoiler?

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