May 15th, 2011
Notes: Why “Qualifier” and Victor Hanescu as floaters? Because one of those will likely send the struggling No. 4 seed Roddick out of the tournament in his first match; interesting opening-round match-ups include (6) Baghdatis vs. (WC) Benneteau, and (8) Fognini vs. (WC) Gulbis; Roddick is making his debut in Nice, looking for some last-minute clay preparation after going winless this dirt season, and extending his losing record to four straight matches; the Top 4 seeds in Nice this year are all making their tournament debuts; Richard Gasquet won the title last year.
April 4th, 2011
Former collegiate and American qualifier Irina Falconi topped Slovak Magdalena Rybarikova 7-6(9), 7-5, and American Christina McHale defeated British qualifier Heather Watson 5-7, 6-3, 7-6(3) in first-round play.
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April 2nd, 2011
Maria Sharapova remained winless in three career Miami finals on Saturday after being out-hit and out-grunted by Belarus’ 21-year-old Victoria Azarenka 6-1, 6-4 in the final of the Sony Ericsson Open.
March 8th, 2011
Notes: Clijsters vs. Jankovic QF seems likely, but some young guns in the section in Kvitova and Petkovic, and the hot-and-cold Bartoli; (21) Petkovic vs. Safarova looming 2nd rd., and prospect of (19) Ivanovic getting beaten by 40+ year old Date-Krumm 2nd rd.; all-Serb Jankovic vs. Ivanovic possible 4th rd.
March 6th, 2011
Andy “The Closer” Roddick clinches for the U.S. in the first match on Sunday, beating Paul Capdeville in four sets. Chile got its only live point on Day One when Capdeville turned his match against John Isner into a fitness contest, beating Big John from two sets down. Roddick opened with a win over Nicolas Massu on Day One, and the Bryan brothers won the Saturday doubles point for the U.S., which will next host Spain.
February 27th, 2011
Notes: Troubled former No. 1 Dinara Safina floats seedlessly in the draw, starting against China’s Xinyun Han, then a possible meeting with (5) Safarova; (8) Jovanovski a tough start against Tanasugarn, and (1) Schiavone vs. Dokic; last year Kleybanova beat the now-retired Elena Dementieva to win her first WTA title in Kuala Lumpur.
January 8th, 2011
The list of floaters almost as impressive as the seed list; tough openers include Kirilenko vs. Cibulkova (winner to face (1) Wozniacki), (5) Schiavone vs. Kleybanova (winner to likely face Hantuchova), possible (3) Clijsters vs. Petrova 2nd rd., former world No. 2 Kuznetova vs. (WC) Dokic, winner to face (4) Stosur vs. Wickmayer winner, (6) Jankovic vs. Rezai, and (2) Zvonareva vs. winner of Pennetta vs. qualifier; 7 of the Top 10 players present in Sydney; Elena Dementieva (now retired) beat Serena Williams (now injured) in the 2010 final…Clijsters (2007, ’03) is the lone returning champ in the field, in addition to the 2008-05 runner-ups Kuznetsova (2008), Jankovic (2007), Schiavone (2006), and Stosur (2005); 11 former No. 1 players have won the Sydney title.
October 2nd, 2010
Wozniacki stands at No. 1 in the Race to the Sony Ericsson Championships Singles Standings, meaning if the season ended today, she would be crowned the year-end No. 1 player.
September 19th, 2010
“It’s overwhelming,” Paszek said. “I’m extremely happy. Anytime you win a tournament for the first time it’s very special. This is something I’ll remember the rest of my life.”
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August 24th, 2010
“I don’t see how I got a blister after sitting on my [expletive deleted] for two days,” Azarenka said.