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TENNIS: Eastbourne 2017

I only saw the final of Eastbourne, having followed the headlines (big names, Watson doing well after a while, Konta’s injury which sounds worse the more I hear of it), but it was a decent final, with a Karolina against a Caroline, one with more weapons, the other with more experience, (Wozniacki, a former world no. 1 who hasn’t won a grand slam). Both started okay, with Wozniacki slightly flattered by serving first and maybe Pliskova taking a little longer to get on the board and maybe even playing her way in. What I liked was even though her movement is probably a (relative) weakness, she was heading towards the net, where she did well, a lot and so she was always attacking. It only took one break point for her to win the first set, and Wozniacki couldn’t do much but hold on because Pliskova’s serve is so good.

In the second set, there was that one game where Wozniacki did get several break points, but Pliskova withstood it, and it felt decisive. She broke again and only needed the one game to take the championship, with a few of the serves that had helped her get there. You can see the room for improvement, but if she’s playing well on grass, it’s obviously good enough for her to be close to world no. 1, which yes, says as much about the women’s game as hers.

As for Wimbledon, it would be nice if fewer players were injured, for instance, I hoped that this year, Konta would have a breakthrough here, because I don't think the British public believes she's as good as she is because it ony counts at Wimbledon. If Nadal went into the second week after having such a torrid time on the grass for the past few years and if Kvitova went deep that would be good. I’d also like to see one of the former female grand slam champions to back it up and for something to come together for Murray this year. To complete the wishlist, less John Inverdale would be welcome, the Eastbourne on-court interviews were not great from him. Sue Barker keeps it simple and sympathetic, and it works.

This entry was originally posted at http://feather-ghyll.dreamwidth.org/143213.html. Please comment wherever you prefer to.

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July 2017

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