Day 4 of the 2009 WTA Tour Championships in Doha was the final day of round robin matches where 3 of the remaining 4 semi-final spost would be decided. The pressure was on as 5 players were vying for a spot in the final 4 of the year-end championships.
(6) Victoria Azarenka fell to the pressure after being close to a straight sets win for the 2nd match in a row by retiring at 6-4, 5-7, 1-4 handing the 1.72m Agnieszka Radwanska from Poland a win in the only match she played in Doha. Their head-to-head series is now levelled at 2 wins each. Radwanska replaced Vera Zvonareva who withdrew with a right ankle injury. Both players take home 200,000 US dollars for winning 1 match in the round robin.
Azarenka lost her chance to push Caroline Wozniacki out of the semi-finals if she could defeat fellow 20 year old Radwanska. Azarenka has the game to challenge for the big titles and top rankings if she can learn to control her mental and emotional state on the biggest stages.
(3) Svetlana Kuznetsova defeated compatriot (5) Elena Dementieva without losing her serve for the whole match. Kuznetsova won 6-3 6-2 to improve her head-to-head record to 7 wins from 11 matches. More importantly for the 2009 French Open women’s singles champion her streak of 8 straight losses in the past 3 years of WTA Tour Championships is broken. Both players earned 200,000 US dollars.
Kuznetsova’s victory elevated Venus Williams into the semi finals due to the fact that Venus had the best record of these 3 players who are all tied on 1 round robin win. The 29 year old American won 4 sets overall, Kuznetova won 3 sets and Dementieva won just the 2 sets in her 3 matches.
(4) Caroline Wozniacki and (8) Jelena Jankovic both finished with 2 match wins after as predicted, Wozniacki struggled obviously not recovering well enough from leg cramping problems in her previous match. Jankovic (pictured above), won 6-2 6-2 to go 3-0 in head-to-head battles with the Dane. Jankovic claimed the No.1 spot in the white group due to the fact that she lost only 2 sets from her 3 matches as compared to Wozniacki’s 4 sets.
The draw for Centre Court for the semi-finals on Saturday 31 October at not before 4:30pm is in the 1st semi-final: the No.1 performer from the white group (8) Jelena Jankovic up against (7) Venus Williams who finished as No.2 in the maroon group.
At not before 7:30pm the 2nd semi-final is between the No.1 performer in the maroon group and the only undefeated player in Doha with 3 wins (2) Serena Williams versus (4) Caroline Wozniacki who was No.2 in the white group.
For further details about this event on this tennis website click this link -> WTA Tour Champion 2009: Oct 27-Nov 1.
photo credit: Jet Magbanua