Poor Stefanie Voegele. She was robbed of a point and had her concentration irretrievably broken at 4-4 in the 2nd set in Memphis today. Voegele had crawled back in the match after dropping the first set, and the worst display of short term memory loss by an official couldn’t have come at a worse time for Voegele. She returned a serve and it landed in play. The linesman called Erakovic’s serve wide, but the replay challenge showed it in. Instead of replaying the point, Chair Umpire Gigi Gregory called the point for Erakovic.
This made no sense, of course, but the result clearly altered the outcome of the match. Voegele’s coach, Ivo Werner, apparently directed strong words toward the Chair, as in calling Gregory a ‘fat b**ch”. While it’s not acceptable to use profanity at a tennis match unless you’re playing, a colossal umpire goof-up of these proportions could leave a lot of people momentarily forgetting their filters. This has to go down as the worst officiating call in history, and that’s saying something, since we survived the first part of the NFL season with replacement referees.
Tough break for Erakovic too, because it took the spotlight from another solid effort on her part. She’ll be a big underdog tomorrow.
Sabine Lisicki eked by an agressive Magdalena Rybarikova 7-5, 7-5. More likely, Sabine stole the match. In the take advantage way and not the mugging way like Voegele got from Gigi Gregory. Rybarikova served for both sets at 5-4 and lost the following three games in each set to lose at 5 and 5. She also looked strong this week but will probably be remembered for not being able to hold her nerve than anything else. Lisicki is a clear favorite for the title and is on to her second straight final in a row.
On Sunday, I picked Sabi to win it all in Memphis. Barring a major letdown on her part or another Gigi Gregory ’Moment to Forget to Remember’, she’ll be holding the heavy hardware tomorrow night.
US REPRESENTATIVE RACHEL LIM TO COMPETE AT LONGINES FUTURE TENNIS ACES TOURNAMENT AT ROLAND GARROS, JUNE 7-9, 2012
Lim to Compete for a Chance to Play with Tennis Legend
Stephanie Graf Prior to the French Open Final
WEEHAWKEN, NJ – May 30, 2012 – Rachel Lim, the United States representative for the ‘Longines Future Tennis Aces’ is on the road to the French Open tournament at Roland Garros, and is currently training near her home in Briarcliff Manor, NY in preparation for her first International tournament. Lim qualified for the all-expense-paid trip to Paris following a victory at last month’s Future Tennis Aces U.S. qualifying event at Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, site of the U.S. Open, in Flushing Meadows, NY. Ranked No. 22 nationally in the 12-and-under division, Lim will compete against 15 finalists from around the world during the final weekend of the French Open.
In addition to winning an all-expense paid trip to Roland Garros, Lim will compete for a chance to play with former world No. 1 and Longines Ambassador of Elegance Stefanie Graf and member of the Longines Rising Tennis Stars Sabine Lisicki (ranked 12th at the WTA) in an exhibition match prior to the French Open Women’s Final, and financing for her tennis equipment until her 16th birthday, courtesy of Longines.
“I’m very excited to meet and play against other players from around the world,” said Lim. “I can’t wait to experience their different styles of play. This will be my first trip overseas to play a tennis tournament. I am very excited to finally be able to visit the Eiffel tower, learn about the French culture and go to the French Open at Roland Garros and have the chance of a lifetime to play on the brick clay.”
Lim started playing tennis at 5 years of age and appeared in her first national competition at age 8. Last November, she won her first USTA National Open in the 12-and-under singles division and most recently captured her second national title at the USTA National Open at Owning Mills, MD. She also placed 3rd in doubles at the same tournament.
Longines Future Tennis Aces is part of the brand’s global commitment to support and develop tennis’ superstars of tomorrow. All the players who qualified for the World Final event in Paris will have the opportunity to attend the French Open Women’s Final on June 9.
Longines is the official timekeeper of the French Open of Roland Garros. Countries competing at the Longines Future Tennis Aces World Final include: Australia, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Italia, Japan, Mexico, Poland, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, Taiwan, United Kingdom and the United States.
A complete schedule of events follows:
Longines Future Tennis Aces World Championship Tournament
Date: Thursday and Friday, June 7-8
Time: 10 am – 6 p.m. local time Paris
Location: Roland Garros Courts 14 & 16
Longines Future Tennis Aces World FINAL
Date: Saturday, June 9
Time: 10:15 am local time
Paris Location: Roland Garros Court 7
Stefanie Graf Exhibition Match featuring finalists from Longines Future Tennis Aces
Tournament Date: Saturday, June 9
Time: 11:15 am local Paris time
Location: Roland Garros Court 7
Sabine Lisicki was the first player to get Stadium Court practice time at Family Circle Cup in Charleston. She faces “Lucky Loser turned Second-Rounder” Andrea Hlavackova, the subject of our FCC Feature Interview, in her 2012 Chucktown debut. An interview with Lisicki will also be available on The Youtubes tomorrow.
Good morning! Play begins in about half an hour at the Family Circle Cup Qualifying finals. First up today is Karolina Pliskova in a showdown with Michlle Larcher de Brito and Shelby Rogers/Paula Ormaechea on Althea Gibson. Though Althea Gibson Court has been kind to Rogers, it’s surprising that her match is not being held on the larger Stadium Court. The Charleston resident will find crowd support where ever the match is conducted today.
It wouldn’t be qualifying without a good veteran vs. upstart fight, and today’s installment comes in the form of Rhode Islander Jill Craybas, who will meet Madison Brengle. Mirjana Lucic and Estrella Cabeza Candela will also serve as a struggle between the young and the wise.
Pick your favorite match below and tweet @TennisEastCoast if you want special attention paid to a particular match.
As an added bonus, Tennis East Coast’s coverage of today’s Family Circle Cup session will also include the popular practice session photo tweets. Today’s featured hitters are Sabine Lisicki and Venus Williams.
ORDER OF PLAY – SUNDAY, APRIL 01, 2012
STADIUM start 10:00 am
Qualifying – K Pliskova (CZE) vs M Larcher de Brito (POR)
Qualifying – M Brengle (USA) vs J Craybas (USA)
ALTHEA GIBSON start 10:00 am
Qualifying – P Ormaechea (ARG) vs [WC] S Rogers (USA)
Qualifying – I Benesova (CZE) vs K Pliskova (CZE)
Qualifying – M Oudin (USA) vs P Rampre (SLO)
Qualifying – M Czink (HUN) vs C Vandeweghe (USA)
COURT 3 start 10:00 am
Qualifying – M Domachowska (POL) vs M Duque-Marino (COL)
Qualifying – Y Chan (TPE) vs C Giorgi (ITA)
Qualifying – M Lucic (CRO) vs E Cabeza Candela (ESP)
Qualifying – S Voegele (SUI) vs C Garcia (FRA)
COURT 4 start 11:00 am
Qualifying – A Amanmuradova (UZB) vs V Uhlirova (CZE)
Not Before 1:00 PM
Qualifying – A Hlavackova (CZE) vs Y Shvedova (KAZ)
FamilyCircleCup.com Straw Poll Results
2,168 votes cast (67 % reporting)
- Lisicki, Sabine 595
- Williams, Serena 568
- Radwanska, Aga 449
- Stosur, Samantha 175
- Goerges, Julia 128
- Jankovic, Jelena 121
- Bartoli, Marion 67
- Zvonareva, Vera 65
The Family Circle Cup Straw Poll is still too close to call as of 7:00 a.m.
At first, we were mystified that Sabine Lisicki was a close second to Serena Williams in FamilyCircleCup.com’s “I’m excited to watch this top 8 seed…” poll. Then, yesterday, Lisicki took a small but significant lead over Serena Williams.
It turns out that there’s a Karl Rove in the mix, better known as the Twitter account of @TeamSabine. The group garnered Lisicki’s camp a couple of hundred votes in the last few days. Based on our exit polling demonstrating the SuperPAC influence of @TeamSabine, Tennis East Coast is close to projecting that Sabine Lisicki will win the South Carolina Straw Poll at FamilyCircleCup.com when all the votes are counted.
The most interesting race is for last place, as Marion Bartoli, the only player to defeat world #1 Viktoria Azarenka this year, pulled two votes ahead of former world #2 Vera Zvonareva for the 7th spot.
The WTA South Carolina Primary is Sunday, April 8.