Tennis-X Wimbledon Women’s SF Preview: The Unknown Known
by Staff | July 2nd, 2014, 11:22 pm
  • 29 Comments

Serena? Maria? Venus? — Victoria?

None of the above.

The Wimbledon women’s semifinals on Thursday are a toss-up. Or are they? Let’s take a look:

(6) PETRA KVITOVA vs. (23) LUCIE SAFAROVA

It’s the first time Kvitova has “shown up” since winning the 2011 title. The reticent Czech against the former girlfriend of Tomas Berdych — as that is basically what Safarova has achieved after being tabbed as a top star after some early results, but not delivering.

It’s an all-Czech meeting with Kvitova leading the career head-to-head 5-0, with Safarova stretching their meetings to three sets twice. Advantage: Kvitova.

“It’s going to be my third match against Czech girl actually during the Wimbledon, which is unusual,” Kvitova said. “We played last time in Eastbourne. It was big fight until the end. I’m expecting tough battle again. Of course, she’s playing amazing. She’s in semifinal. It’s going to be great match I think.”

Kvitova
Making fifth Grand Slam SF appearance, including third at Wimbledon (also 2010, 2011); additionally was a semifinalist at 2012 Roland Garros and 2012 Australian Open… Currently the top-ranked lefthander, ahead of Kerber, Makarova, Safarova and Dellacqua in Top 50… With R32 win, improved to 4-1 vs. V.Williams; one of 9 players who have defeated V.Williams 4 or more times… Including wins at Wimbledon over Hlavackova (1r) and Zahlavova Strycova (QF), owns a 6-0 record vs. CZE opponents in 2014; faces countrywoman Safarova today.

Safarova
Has surpassed career-best Grand Slam result by reaching SF; previously reached QF at 2007 Australian Open… Entered 2014 Wimbledon having won four tie-break sets this season; this week won three tie-breaks in first two matches… Win over No.10 Cibulkova in 3r was second Top 10 win of 2014 (2-9 vs. Top 10, six of the nine losses in three sets); has played a WTA-leading 11 matches vs. Top 10 ranked opponents this season… Is 18-56 lifetime vs. Top 10; also defeated No.10 Wozniacki at 2014 Sydney.

(3) SIMONA HALEP vs. (13) GENIE BOUCHARD

Halep won their only career meeting this year in Indian Wells in three sets.

“Here it’s different because it’s grass court,” Halep said. “A big difference between matches. But tomorrow, it’s another day, so will be different match. But I have confidence in myself. I believe that I can win, but I expect a tough match. She’s a great player and she’s playing really well, so I have just to enjoy it.

“I learned from that match that I have to keep fighting till the end. At that moment I won, so we’ll see tomorrow what will happen.”

Halep’s enjoyed a rapid rise from the 60s a year ago May to a No. 3 world ranking. Bouchard showed that the jump from top junior to top pro can be a quick one.

Bouchard goes after the ball on grass to play first-strike tennis, and Halep will have to match that aggressiveness, because counter-punching won’t do. Advantage: Canada.

What are your predictions for the women’s semifinals?

Halep
Making 4th Wimbledon appearance; advancing to SF is best result here… Best result at Wimbledon by a Romanian woman (previous best at SW19 was a two-time quarterfinalist, Ruzici; QF in 1978, 1981)… After QF defeat of No.19 Lisicki owns a 32-31 lifetime record vs. Top 20 opponents (10-3 in 2014); faces No.13 Bouchard today… At 2014 Roland Garros became first Romanian woman to reach a Grand Slam final in 34 years (last was 1980 Roland Garros, R-Up Ruzici)… Has achieved career-best results at consecutive Slams: R16 at 2013 US Open, QF at 2014 Australian Open, R-Up at 2014 Roland Garros; was 7-13 at Slams after Wimbledon, since owns 18-3 record.

Bouchard
With a win today, would move into WTA Top 10 after Wimbledon (at No.8, equaling best WTA Ranking by a Canadian; also Bassett-Seguso)… Only player to reach all three of the Grand Slam SF played so far in 2014… Is 6-11 against Top 10 players, incl. 4-4 in 2014 – but is 0-5 in her career vs. Top 5 players; faces No.3 Halep today… Made Top 20 debut after reaching first Grand Slam SF at 2014 Australian Open… Won first career WTA title at Nürnberg (d. Ka.Pliskova in F)… 2014 Wimbledon is only her fourth career grass court main draw event (she lost in opening round at ‘s-Hertogenbosch, l. V.King)… As a junior enjoyed success at Wimbledon lifting both the singles and doubles girls’ championship trophies in 2012; also won girls’ doubles title in 2011.


Also Check Out:
US Open Draws: Women’s Singles Preview
Women’s Semifinal Preview: Radwanska, Bartoli Eye Return To Wimbledon Final
Clijsters Back in French Open Women’s Preview; American Tennis Pile-on
Serena v Lefty, Crying Game v Slicy in Wimbledon Women’s Semis
Serena Williams, Azarenka, Yawn: US Open Women’s Preview

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29 Comments for Tennis-X Wimbledon Women’s SF Preview: The Unknown Known

Dino Says:

Staff: I ask that you please retract the sexist and tasteless clause, “Halep traded in a huge rack…” Thank you.


Eric Says:

“Halep traded in a huge rack for a quick rise to a No. 3 world ranking. ”

Are you actively trying to be awful, or is it just casual idiocy…?


Krishna Says:

Lol :)


Okiegal Says:

I want Genie to win the whole thing, but imo I think Kvitova will prevail!!

Go Genie!!


Sivaji Says:

I wish BOUCHARD could in final of Wimble. good luck BOUCHARD


Colin Says:

No, Krishna, it’s not funny.

Firstly, if you think it is, you’re pretty insensitive yourself.

Secondly, is it really worth logging in merely in order to type “Lol”? Not exactly a profound comment, is it?

This particular “Staff” would seem to be the same oaf who perpetrates the Funk/Trunk column.


Gordon Says:

Besides being sexist the article is completely lacking of any insight into the women’s game other than their nationalities.

Have you seen any of these women play? Do you even care before you wrote this embarrassing attempt at an article?

And as for Simona’s breast reduction, you seem to think that a large breasted female player will automatically acquire a single digit ranking as a result of the operation, totally disregarding the hard work she must have put in to become the player she is today. It is a stupid, trite moronic comment and in the 70s might illicit “big titties” jokes in these comments but you’ll notice that there are none. That is because the remark has no place in a discussion of the game.

The women players deserve better. This applies to Randall and Gainey and any other writers out there for allowing Staff to dismissively put this crap up there.

The matches start in three hours. I imagine it is too late for a proper piece on the upcoming semis, but in the future some educated writing by one of the more knowledgable writers and an absense of Staff articles would be a start.


Truthsquad Says:

As I’ve said before on this site… If you have nothing but contempt and condescension for the women of tennis, then you should just admit your bias, and stop covering them. Reducing 2 of the semi-finalists at the worlds most prestigious tournament as “the ex girl-friend”, and “the one with the huge rack” is not funny, clever, inciteful or witty. It is just painfully bad. It sadly diminishes the entire impact of this site.


Ben Pronin Says:

I think Kvitova beats Safarova and I’m hoping Bouchard wins the title but I have a feeling Halep will take it. I have no idea how Safarova got to this stage but the other 3 are in fine form. If they’re all playing their best, Kvitova wins. Her demolition of Sharapova in 2011 was master class. And she can do that to any of the remaining players. But I think Halep is too steady and has proven that she’s not going to wilt on the big stages. But I would love to see Bouchard take the title. It would be fitting after 2 semifinal showings at the other slams. She is on a steady rise and it’s nice to see a young player be so consistent instead of making a splash then collapsing under the pressure to repeat.


andrea Says:

Wow. Halep just withered in that second set. I thought this would be a tough 3 setter.

Can’t believe i get to watch a Canadian woman compete for the Wimbledon title . It’s so surreal after watching the sport for all these years!

Congrats Genie! Bring home the hardware!!!


Colin Says:

Gordon, you mean “elicit”, not “illicit”.

I was expecting a great match here, but Halep injured her ankle, and we’ll never know how much it affected her play. Now she’s gone I can cheer for Kvitova, who is actually playing well again, after seeming to have forgotten how.

For the people who write in terms of tabloid headlines, all is not lost: didn’t Petra used to have a 16 year old boyfriend? Tennis? Who wants to read about tennis?


C!P! Says:

Andrea , have you ever seen anyone playing better after rolling his ankle? what did you expect it would happen ,Halep raising her game? of course not, with an injury like that its a wonder she could still be in the game; adrenaline and ambition help you a little but only for a short period ;Halep gave everythin to the 1st set ,but even if she wouldve won that , the outcome wouldve been the same ,no one wins being injured in the game, especially in tennis


C!P! Says:

injury being on the left ankle ,the service and backhand suffers also the lateral movement especially towards the left side; anyone who plays tennis knows this


SG1 Says:

Genie’s from my hometown of Montreal so needless to say, the county and Montreal will be amped up for this final. I’ve never seen a Canadian get this far into a major and actually have a chance to win it. She’s made her country and her fans incredibly proud.

Her steady and incremental improvement is great to see. I have a feeling that Genie will be around for a good long while as long as the injury bug doesn’t intervene.


TennisVagabond.com Says:

Genie and Halep are the future of women’s tennis.
We will be seeing a lot of them.


andrea Says:

@ C!p!

unfortunately, i only came in to watch the match live in the second set. i just read about the ankle twisting. that would certainly explain part of the withering…

surprising that halep of all people would twist her ankle. many pundits touted her as being the better mover on grass. you never know…..


Okiegal Says:

@SG 1

We have a college in my hometown of Ada, Oklahoma and while at a restaurant the other day the girl serving our food mentioned being from Canada and was going to ECU on a tennis scholarship. I told her that I followed tennis and she asked if I was familiar with Genie and I said yes and she told me that they were doubles partners at one time. Thought that was very interesting. She asked me to go to Montreal with her. She was very nice. She wants to be a tennis coach at high school level. It truly is a small world.


Okiegal Says:

@SG 1

I am a fan of Genie too! She is my new favorite! I so hope she can win this!!

#gogeniego


Gordon Says:

First – to Staff and the folks who run this site: thank you for reposting this will a little more respect towards woman’s tennis. Everyone makes mistakes, and it is nice to see you correcting one of yours. Good on ya.

Secondly – ankle or no, Bouchard was not on today and she managed to win. After she gets more comfortable with the limelight she is going to do for women’s tennis what Roger Federer did for men’s. She anticipates unlike anyone on court, and she is still improving.

Many are marvelling that she has the best W/L record of any one – make or female – in the slams this year. After she wins on Sunday she is going to start a new streak – of Grand Slam wins.

This is not someone who loves tennis and wants to make a living at it; Eugenie Bouchard wants to win everything, and the tools she doesn’t have she is acquiring at an amazing rate.

Good on her as well.


jane Says:

amazing for genie and canadian tennis, plus petra/genie was the final i wanted!

also congrats to pospisl and jack sock for reaching the semis in men’s doubles.

we now have a woman in the finals
a man in the singles finals
and a man in the doubles semis (we would’ve had 2 but nestor lost)

not bad for folks who live in igloos. ;)


Hippy Chic Says:

No offence to Petra whom i do like,but i was hoping for Safarova to make the final,that way we would be guaranteed a 1st time GS winner,which would really open up the womens side,BTW Hi Jane nice to see you posting again….


Colin Says:

Jane, you’re getting ahead of yourself – Milos isn’t in the final yet.


jane Says:

oops i meant semifinals for raonic! i actually think fed will win that. but still, it’s a landmark none the less.


jane Says:

^ yes, sorry colin. i noticed after the fact.


SG1 Says:

Okie,

Amazing that you met someone that actually played tennis with Genie that lives in Oklahoma. Just crazy!


SG1 Says:

Okie,

You definitely should get up to Montreal one day. I think it’s one of North America’s great cities. I’m biased but I know many people that have been all over the place and they almost universally put Montreal close to the top of their list of great cities.


Okiegal Says:

@SG1

Would love to go to Montreal. I don’t fly so it is possible that I could make the trip……no ocean! Canada just sounds absolutely incredible. I am very hot natured and hot summer weather is a killer for me….it has to be cooler than Oklahoma in the summer…..right? I haven’t visited with the girl anymore but going to go to some of her matches and who knows I might get me a passport and make the trip. She is going to the tournament. Don’t know what city she is from.


SG1 Says:

Okie,

Canada has a lot of beautiful places to see. In terms of beautiful nature, you need to go out west to Alberta and British Columbia. If you’re more into the historical stuff, I think the east is a little better. In eastern Canada, there’s Montreal, Quebec City, Halifax, Charlottetown etc. All great places to check out.

As for the weather in Montreal it can get quite hot and humid in July and August. If you’re concerned about the heat, early to mid-September is perfect. By then, the temperature is in the low 20′s (Celsius). Of course, you’ll miss the tournament here which is usually a week or two before the Open.


SG1 Says:

You would probably have to fly out west so that wouldn’t be in the cards (unless of course you had a few drinks and some pills before getting on the plane).


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Rankings
ATP - Jul 28 WTA - Jul 28
1 Novak Djokovic1 Serena Williams
2 Rafael Nadal2 Na Li
3 Roger Federer3 Simona Halep
4 Stan Wawrinka4 Petra Kvitova
5 Tomas Berdych5 Agnieszka Radwanska
6 David Ferrer6 Maria Sharapova
7 Milos Raonic7 Eugenie Bouchard
8 Juan Martin Del Potro8 Angelique Kerber
9 Grigor Dimitrov9 Jelena Jankovic
10 Andy Murray10 Victoria Azarenka
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