12 March 2011

Day 8 at the Aussie Open: 24 January

After yesterday's mammoth day at Hisense Arena I felt like I had a bit of a tennis hangover from all the tension and excitement. I arrived on the grounds early as usual and was ready for my final day of my five-day grounds pass (seriously - best value ever). It was a boiling hot day - I actually ended up in First Aid (more about that later).
The best match I saw today was Agnieska Radwanska vs Peng Shaui fourth round match. Peng has been having a fantastic 2011. She made the semifinals in Auckland and really had Wickmayer on the ropes and should have made the final (and I think she would have beaten Arn).

I like Aga's game a lot and Peng's two handed shots remind me of Monica Seles (my top fave WTA player ever) - I had a feeling it was going to be a great match.

Peng Shaui
And it was a fine example of all-court tennis and another match you hate to see anyone lose. I actually left the match after the first set to watch Rafa practice again but finished watching it inside Hisense Arena because I wasn't feeling well.

Yesterday's long day at Hisense and lack of much water while watching the marathon Sveta/Franny match left me dehydrated and the hot sun on Day 8 got my pulse and breathing both racing a bit much and I got very woozy and thought I was going to faint. A bit scary but there are First Aid centres all over Melbourne Park so help is never far away.

Once I got my heart rate back to normal I caught the final games of Aga/Peng Shaui. Poor Peng, she had the upset on her racket and held two match points while serving at 5-4 but Aga broke and ended up winning it 7-5 3-6 7-5.

Tonight's lineup on Margaret Court Arena was sure to also get my heart racing - I was going to watch Pat Rafter! Pat took part in the Legends Doubles and was partnered with the eccentric (okay, crazy) Henri Leconte against a portly Yevgeny Kafelnikov and Wayne Ferreira.

It was just fantastic to see Pat playing tennis, finally. I'd always missed seeing him play when I attended other slams - either he was injured or had lost already and then he retired (sob!). The Legends event is such great atmosphere with lots of crowd interaction. Good fun.

A few gratuitous shots from today...

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