Shamapova continues her "dominating" ways in Birmingham
When Russian tennis player Maria Sharapova barely managed to squeak past American Alison Riske in the semifinals of the WTA tour event in Birmingham England, it was breathlessly reported that she was “on course” to take the title for a third time. Our gal Shamapova stated: “I suppose I knew in my mind I would be back.”
Never mind that Riske was not ranked in the top 180 players in the world, yet pushed Sharapova to three sets. Never mind that before reaching the finals Shamapova was not called upon to defeat a single seeded player. In other words, never mind pesky little things like reality and facts. Sharapova was in full swagger. “I’m back, I’m back!” she chirped.
But then she had to deal with the nasty inconvenience of actually playing the finals match, this time against world #11 Li Na. Our gal Shamapova lost the first set and then was blown away in the second, managing to win only a pathetic single game.
The recent photo of Maria Sharapova, supposedly one of the most beautiful women in the world and definitely the hottest babe on the WTA Tour, is rather shocking. Look at it closely (click to enlarge): Her hair is mousey, her skin is ghastly, her eyes are puffy and she looks much, much older than her years. If we squint, we swear we can see signs of five o’clock shadow. Published on the WTA website, even the tournament itself knew how bad it was. As a result, when they wanted to publish a photo array to draw some publicity, it was followed by a large number of photos of our gal Shamapova taken years ago, even at the beginning of her career, as if we’d forget about this one.
Maria, of course, has good reason to be aging rapidly. And no, we’re not talking about her psycho father Yuri, either.
If you’ve never heard of Shuai Peng, don’t feel too bad. She’s a Chinese journeywoman on the WTA circuit currently ranked #53 in the world. “Russian” world #15 Maria Sharapova probably hadn’t heard of her either when the two met on the court in Beijing at the China Open last week .
But Sharapova may now be keeping herself more up to date. In Sharapova’s second match of the tournament the two players contested 18 games and Sharapova won only six of them. Though tossing in roughly the same first-serve perecentage as her opponent, Sharapova was only able to win half her first serve points and was outplayed in every aspect of the game, getting blown off the court after, inexplicably, receiving one of only three first-round byes allocated among the 64 players in the draw, allowing her to avoid a first-round drainer.
World #1 Dinara Safina, for instance, didn’t receive one of those byes. And she probably wished she had, since she too was blown of the court by an unknown Chinese player in her second match of the tournament. Shuia Zhang, who destroyed Safina, came into the match ranked a shocking #226 in the world. Zhang is so obscure that the WTA website doesn’t even have her photograph. Ouch. Zhang was then promptly crushed in her next match by the #14 seed Marian Bartoli in easy straight sets.
And, believe it or not, the news got still worse for Safina.
Well, so-called “Russian” Maria Shamapova, who actually lives in the United States, learned her game there, and never spends any time in Russia, “won” another tennis tournament last week, the Toray Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo, Japan.
Once again, it was all smoke and mirrors for our gal Maria.
The mighty Oudin, slayer of Russians
If you learned that a 17-year-old American ranked well outside the world’s top 65 players went deep, deep into the draw at the year’s final grand slam event, the U.S. Open in New York, it probably wouldn’t surprise you a bit, would it, to learn that each and every one of her matches prior to the quarter finals came against Russian opponents, whom she cut down as if they were feeble shoots of wheat beneath her sharpened deadly scythe, regardless of their ranking?
More pain, humiliation and failure to report for the Russian women at last week’s WTA tour event in New Haven, Connecticut. Russia had two of the top four seeds, including the #1, at the last tune-up event before the final grand slam event of the year in New York City, but neither of them managed to get as far as the semi-finals. #4 seed Nadia Petrova lost her opening round match to an unseeded opponent, while #1 seed Svetlana Kuzntesova went down in the quarter finals to the #8 seed, who then promtly lost to an unseeded opponent in the semis, taking just three of 15 games played in the final two sets.
And at the U.S. Open, Maria Shamapova’s run of inhuman dumb luck contiunued apace.
Russia’s “#1″ player Dinara Safina was booted out of the WTA tour event in Toronto last week in her first match in straight sets by an unseeded opponent. French Open winner and #6 seed Svetlana Kuznetsova met exactly the same fate. And that was only the beginning of the horror for Russia, even though Russian’s #4 seed took the Toronto title. Look carefully, and you saw truly sickening results.