Amanmuradova stuns champion Shvedova in Bangalore OpenMarch 3rd, 2008 - 11:22 pm ICT by admin
By Saumojyoti Singha Choudhury
Bangalore, March 3 (IANS) Defending champion Yaroslava Shvedova’s dream of retaining the Bangalore Open title was shattered by Uzbek Akgul Amanmuradova, who defeated the Russian 3-6, 6-3, 6-3 in the opening round of the $600,000 here Monday. In an earlier match of the Tier II women’s event, sixth seed Sybille Bammer of Austria toiled for over two hours to defeat unseeded Japanese Akiko Morigami 2-6, 6-3, 7-5 at the Karnataka State Lawn Tennis Association.
Unforced errors were the main reason Shvedova’s defeat. The defending champion committed a large number of unforced errors in the match and was also very slow in court coverage while the well-built Uzbek was solid in her serve and volley.
However, it was Shvedova, ranked 90, who seized the initiative early breaking the tall Uzbek’s serve in the third game of the opening set, but Amanmuradova broke back in the very next game to level scores at 2-2.
In fact, till the fifth game of the set, the 20-year-old Russian had committed 11 unforced errors as compared to her opponent’s two.
From then onwards, it went on even stages till the eighth game when the world ranked 83rd Uzbek broke Shvedova’s scratchy serve for the second time in the set to go up 5-3 and then held on to her own serve to pocket the set 6-3 and ignite hopes of the first upset of the tournament.
However, the Russian made it sure it won’t be a cakewalk for the Uzbek as she reduced her unforced error percentage and powered her way into the match, breaking her opponent’s serve in the sixth game of the second set to go 4-2. She then held on to her own service games to clinch the set 6-3 and level scores set apiece.
Shevedova continued her attacking game in the third set and broke Amanmuradova serve as early as in the first game, only to see her opponent level the score in the next. But the turning point of the match came in the fifth game of the set when Shvedova had to stretch herself to the fullest while returning a deep forehand volley of Amanmuradova and in that process pulled her back.
A trainer was called in immediately to check her. After sometime she returned to the courts. But the damage was already done by that back pull. As soon as she returned the Uzbek broke her serve in the very next game to take the lead and held on to her own serve to pocket the set and match 6-3.
In an earlier match, Bammer, who is one of the very few mothers on the tour, came back strongly in the second set breaking Morigami’s serve first in the third game and then in the eighth game to square the set 1-1.
The Austrian seized the initiative early in the third set with two back-to-back breaks in the third and fifth games.
However, Morigami made a last ditch effort breaking Bammer in the eighth game, but the sixth seed broke the unseeded Japanese again in the 11th game and served out to make the second round.
“It was a difficult match to start with. Morigami is a very good player, so I expected a tough match. Initially, my approach was not right. I hardly got any time to practice here as I arrived just two days back,” Bammer told reporters after the match.
“I am not playing good tennis. After losing the first set, I was just trying to keep the ball on court,” he added.
Asked about a possible encounter with Serena Williams in the third round, she said: “Right now my focus is on the next match.”
Meanwhile, Indian girls had a disappointing tournament, the biggest in South-East Asia, as US-based Indian Sunitha Rao and Bhambri sisters Ankita and Sanaa lost in the qualifiers.
Sunitha, ranked 181, failed to make it to the main draw, losing in straight sets 2-6, 1-6 to Tiantian Sun of China, while Ankita and Sanaa squandered a set lead to bow out in the first round of the 4-6, 6-4, 10-4 in the super tie-breaker.
In a doubles fist round, third-seeded Chinese pair, Shuai Peng and Tiantian Sun, defeated unseeded Russians Vesna Manasieva and Vera Zvonareva 6-3, 6-4.
Tags: akgul amanmuradova, akiko morigami, cakewalk, court coverage, defending champion, eighth game, fifth game, first game, karnataka state, lawn tennis association, serve and volley, service games, shvedova, sixth game, sixth seed, sybille bammer, third game, tier ii, unforced error, unforced errors