Roland Garros 2009: Caroline Wozniacki To Duel at High Noon
One shot. One set.
Tomorrow, it's sudden death at high noon for young Dane Caroline Wozniacki and Russian Vera Dushevina on Court Two.
A position the No. 10 seed didn't expect to find herself in, she faced several incredibly tense moments in the second set. Having already dropped the opener in sloppy fashion, she promptly gave away a break to begin her first do-or-die set.
Caroline was rusty and indecisive at best for most of the opening set. Her serve was all over the place. She was committing almost mundane errors ad nauseum. And no sooner did she manage to wrestle a break off Vera, she handed it right back.
The Dane looked almost lost at sea trying to return some of the reckless groundstrokes that Dushevina had to offer. At least she sports the Ocean Blue better than anyone on tour.
A sloppy set ended in predictable sloppy style as Dushevina jumped off the court, feeling like she just won a multi-million dollar lottery.
After Wozniacki got the opening loss of serve out of the way, there was a different feel to her game—desperation. Dushevina wasn't about to hand the match over to her.
Then the hair started flying. And oh, was that a good thing to see.
The Bomber meant business. She began playing smarter tennis, and her errors started going down. Way down. Her serve also seemed like Piotr hit a "turbo" button hidden somewhere on the back of her shirt.
Not only did her velocity shoot up a couple ticks, but her accuracy did also. The aces still weren't coming, but she was able to dictate a good deal more points off the serve. After the initial second set break, Dushevina didn't even smell a break point chance.
But the biggest sign of all was her backhand. There were points where it wasn't just effective, it was nearly lethal.
Vera's will to compete kept her in the match even, as she continued to treat the spectators of Court Philippe Chatrier to an inspired hour of tennis.
As the daylight waned rapidly, Wozniacki knew it was now-or-possibly-never to wrap up the second set. And boy, did she ever.
With a break point, up 6-5 in the set, Caroline sent a backhand buzzing down the line for the set. Although Dushevina was thoroughly convinced that it missed, she can take that one up with the judge because the chair wasn't buying it.
Oh, if it could only have continued.
The linescore will read 4-6, 7-5 for Caroline heading into the final stanza.
Caroline needs to shake the funk that she fell into for most of the first set, and wake up tomorrow ready to go quail hunting. Either way, the winner will take on American Jill Craybas, who sent Tsvetana Pironkova packing with a straight sets washout.
Both players know what's at stake. But hey, Danes are some of the happiest people in the world, right? Just leave your passive face at home, Caroline.
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