Nov 4, 2008

Ana Ivanovic and Elena Dementieva stranded in a desert island in Doha bay

What do two lovely women do when they found themselves stranded in a desert island?

If they are Ana Ivanovic and Elena Dementieva, of course they'll play tennis!

And they are not going to be alone as thousands of fans are already flocking in Doha in Qatar to watch the prestigious Sony Ericsson Championships that will begin tomorrow.

In conjunction with the tournament, Sony Ericsson staged a unique tennis match in a place that has never been played in before - a desert island.

Set against the stunning backdrop of the Doha skyline, Ana Ivanovic and Elena Dementieva rallied on a replica tennis court, specially built for the occasion, on Palm Island in the middle of Doha Bay in the Arabian Gulf.
According to Ana Ivanovic, "It was such a fun way to start the Sony Ericsson Championships; it was amazing and so unusual to be playing tennis on a deserted island with no one there but Elena, myself and the ballboys. I'm really looking forward to the tournament here in Doha and a great finish to the 2008 season."

Then Elena Dementieva commented, "It was such a special experience to play a game of tennis in the middle of the sea looking back at the Doha skyline - what a great memory to have of Doha. I'm really excited for the Sony Ericsson Championships to begin and showcase my best tennis to end the season."
The Sony Ericsson Championships is the prestigious end of season finale to the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour year; and sees the world's top 8 women singles and top 4 women's doubles teams compete for the titles and a share of a record prize money of $4.45 million.

(Via, Images via Women's Tennis Blog,

Nov 3, 2008

Quotes from the weekend winners

“I was playing with 15,000 people. Everybody was behind me today.
The crowd was magic."

~ Jo-Wilfried Tsonga said after defeating David Nalbandian 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 to win the Paris Masters and becoming the 8th players to qualify for the season-ending Masters Cup in Shanghai next week.

“Winning in Bastad and Stockholm and finishing off with Paris it’s nothing that I could have really expected. This is way beyond my goals at the end here so I just hope the good omen continues in Shanghai.”
~ Jonas Bjorkman said after he and Kevin Ullyett defeated Jeff Coetzee and Wesley Moodie 6-2, 6-2 in the final of the BNP Paribas Masters in Paris.

"It was really wonderful to win this event. To finish off the season like this is wonderful. Now I have a long journey ahead of me to Doha, but it'll definitely be worth it. And then it'll be really nice to put the racquets aside for a few weeks!"
~ Nadia Petrova beat Bethanie Mattek 4-6 6-4 6-1 to take the Quebec City title and qualify for WTA Championship in Doha.

In the doubles final, Anna-Lena Groenefeld and Vania King dismissed Jill Craybas and Tamarine Tanasugarn in only two sets, 7-6(3), 6-4. No quotation was available.

(Via Yahoo! Sport, ATP website, Sony Ericsson WTA website)

Nov 2, 2008

WTA Championships in Doha: Let the games begin!

Jelena Jankovic of Serbia, Dinara Safina of Russia, Serena Williams of United States, Ana Ivanovic of Serbia, Elena Dementieva of Russia, Svetlana Kuznetsova of Russia, Venus William of United States and Vera Zvonareva of Russia line up for a photo during the draw for the Sony Ericsson WTA Championships.

The draws are out for the season-ending Sony Ericsson Championships - Doha 2008.

The 4 Russian women in the draw - Dinara Safina, Svetlana Kuznetsova, Elena Dementieva and Vera Zvonareva - are evenly split between the two groups.

Kuznetsova and Zvonareva are in the White Group and Safina and Dementieva - who squared off in the Olympic final - are in the Maroon Group.

ROUND ROBIN GROUP ALLOCATIONS (numeric prefix denotes seeding)

1. Jelena Jankovic (SRB)
4. Ana Ivanovic (SRB)
6. Svetlana Kuznetsova (RUS)
8. Vera Zvonareva (RUS)

2. Dinara Safina (RUS)
3. Serena Williams (USA)
5. Elena Dementieva (RUS)
7. Venus Williams (USA)

There's nothing split about the allocation of the remaining players.

Both Serbian stars - world No.1 Jelena Jankovic and world No.4 Ana Ivanovic - were randomly selected to be in the White Group, while Serena and Venus Williams are both in Maroon.

World no. 1 Jelena Jankovic of Serbia arrives for the draw for the
Sony Ericsson Championships at the Pearl conference centre.

Ana Ivanovic of Serbia talks to the media during the draw.

However, it doesn't mean that we won't have a chance to watch an all-Serbian or all-Williams final.

After the round robin phase, with each player meeting the other three in her pool between Tuesday and Friday, the top players in each pool play the second-placed player in the other in the semifinals.

The winner of each semifinal advance to Sunday's final.
"It's been a goal of mine all year to qualify for the Championships, so it's a real honor to be here," said Safina, who's enjoyed an outstanding season in 2008, rising from No.15 to No.2.

When asked about being in the same group as her sister, Serena Williams joked: "It doesn't bother me at all; we're always in the same half of the draw, so I'm used to it."
Serena Williams

Venus Williams

Svetlana Kuznetsova

Elena Dementieva

The group colors were in honor of the flag of Qatar, the hosts for the Tour's year-end event for the next three years.

Four doubles teams will also compete in the Sony Ericsson Championships - Doha 2008, although they play in a straight knockout event.

Top-ranked duo Cara Black and Liezel Huber will defend their title against two teams that were in Madrid last year - 2007 runners-up Katarina Srebotnik and Ai Sugiyama, and Kveta Peschke and Rennae Stubbs - and Spanish Olympic silver medalists Anabel Medina Garrigues and Virginia Ruano Pascual, who are debuting in the event together.

While Medina is making her season-ending debut, Ruano competed for five consecutive years with Argentina's Paola Suárez, winning the title in 2003.

The doubles draw takes place on Thursday, with the matches set to begin on Saturday.

(Via WTA website)

Feliciano Lopez is officially single; breaks up with Maria Jose Suarez

Feliciano Lopez and Maria Jose Suarez decided to call it quit.

The beautiful couple broke off a year ago but patched back very quickly again.

However this time, according to Maria Jose in an exclusive magazine Hello!, it's going to be permanent.

There are too many differences between them: Feliciano likes to party while Maria Jose prefers to be at home; she wants a stable relationship with commitment i.e. marriage while Feliciano is just not ready for it.

Perhaps their biggest difference is their age, Feliciano is 26 while Maria Jose is 32.

Feli and Maria Jose in happier times.

With a new life without each other, Maria Jose will be concentrating on her new shoe store while Feliciano will be preparing for the Davis Cup final with his Spanish team mates.

(Via,, Menstennisforums)

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