Urszula Radwanska, younger sister of the no. 7 ranked Agnieszka Radwanska, defeated Pironkova, the last seed in the draw, to make the semifinals in Istanbul. It was a quick start for Radwanska taking the first set 6-2. Pironkova came back to take the second set 6-3. The third set was topsy turvy with Pironkova leading 5-1, but Radwanska came back and leveled it sending the match to a third set tiebreak. Radwanska raced to a quick lead in the tiebreak with the score at 5-1 on the change of ends. She then went up 6-1, but lost the next four points. After a long rally she won with the winning shot being a net chord winner. It took some luck, but she made it though. Radwanska will play Magdalena Rybarikova.
The other semifinal will be contested by Lesia Tsurenko and Kirsten Flipkens.
On the WTA tour this week we have tournaments in Istanbul and Bad Gastein. The big name in Istanbul this week is Venus Williams, who is the number 1 seed. The defending champion, Caroline Wozniacki, has decided not to participate this year, opting to start her hard court season in Stanford. We see Sara Errani back in action in Bad Gastein after a finals run in Bucharest.
The ATP tour is packed this week with three tournaments. Bastad will transition from the women to the men, as the beautiful city sees professional tennis for a second week in a row. Umag, Croatia will play host to a variety off talent, including the entertaining Frenchman Gael Monfils. Lastly, the men will have their first hard court tournament of the summer in Bogata.
I will keep you posted on the events of these tournaments.
This week was the final grass court tournament of the year in Newport, RI at the International Tennis Hall of Fame, with unseeded American Rajeev Ram, ranked 161, upsetting no. 2 seed Ivo Karlovic in 3-sets. He will now rise to 87 in the world as he collects the second title of his career.
Also this week were the WTA tournaments in Bastad and Bucharest. Hometown favorite Johanna Laarson, claimed victory against defending champion Mona Barthel in Bastad. Also, Anna Karolina Shmeidlova defeated Sara Errani to hoist her second trophy of the year in Bucharest.
This week the summer clay court season began, and the grass court season sees its final tournament.
On the women’s side you have the tournaments in Bastad and Bucharest. Headlining the Bastad tournament is none other than Serena Williams, fresh of her fifth Wimbledon title. In Bucharest, the top seed is surprisingly not Simona Halep. She decided not to defend her title and instead the top seed is Sara Errani.
On the men’s side, the lone tournament is the final grass court tournament of year in Newport. Players ascend on the International Tennis Hall of Fame for this annual tournament and the induction of the new class of hall of famers. More on the hall of fame inductions to come.
There is still much to talk about with Wimbledon, and this week is a great one to conclude talk of grass and get back to the clay before the American hard court season resumes.