I love me some Sveta and can't stand Henin so I was really excited to see this one play out. I actually hadn't seen Henin play live before but I did see Sveta crash out of the ASB Classic in Auckland in January. I was hopeful Sveta could do it...and she did but not without making us sweat! Sveta is an incredible athlete but loses the plot regularly. But today, she was playing amazingly well, until she served for the match at 5-4 but of course was broken and the ladies ended up playing a super tense tiebreaker. Definitely glad I had a Heineken in hand. Sveta had two match points and then faced a set point before finally winning it 10-8. Happiness!
|Sveta wins 6-4 7-6 over Henin|
When I got back to NZ, I rewatched this match and was so pleased to discover my big scream was loud enough to be heard on TV. Proud.
Venus Willams was the second night match, and I was really nervous for this one. Venus suffered a horrible groin injury during her second round match. I was following that match on Twitter and everyone at the match said Venus was in agony and screaming in pain and they didn't understand why she kept going. But Venus had NEVER retired in a match with injury at a Grand Slam (and apparently not in any match in some 12 years) and she didn't want to quit. I knew she wasn't going to be in top shape for her 3rd round match with Andrea Petkovic but I hoped for the best.
|Venus in her sparkly dress which didn't get much TV time|
My night ended with tears. I was so sad for Venus who I've loved watching since she turned pro in 1994 and was gutted she was in such pain and had to quit. But what really set me off was the crowd's boos. I understand they were upset to miss out on a match but have some sympathy! I am sure a lot of people there had no idea the extent of Venus' injury and what she had to overcome to win her second round match. And Venus just does not quit so it's not like she has a habit of wimping out during matches. She was genuinely hurt and the crowd's reaction was just uncalled for.
BTW - I continue to be a Williams jinx in Melbourne. Venus lost both times I've seen her play (2008 QF to Ivanovic and 2011 to Petko) and I was there when Serena lost to Jankovic at the 2008 Aussie Open (same day Vee lost to Ana). That was just a bad day all around in 2008, as S&V also lost doubles that day (and yes I was at that match).