Guangzhou (Tues): Zheng & Cirstea Through, Illness Forces Bartoli Out

GRC BANK GUANGZHOU INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S OPEN
Guangzhou, China
September 17-22, 2012
$220,000/International
Hard/Outdoors

Results – Tuesday, September 18, 2012
Singles – First Round
(LL) Chang Kai-Chen (TPE) d. (1) Marion Bartoli (FRA) 43 ret. (gastrointestinal illness)
(2) Zheng Jie (CHN) d. Chan Yung-Jan (TPE) 53 ret. (dizziness)
(3) Sorana Cirstea (ROU) d. (Q) Hu Yue-Yue (CHN) 62 75
(4) Urszula Radwanska (POL) d. Melinda Czink (HUN) 76(1) 62
Mathilde Johansson (FRA) d. (6) Monica Niculescu (ROU) 75 62
(7) Peng Shuai (CHN) d. Ayumi Morita (JPN) 76(3) 60
(8) Alizé Cornet (FRA) d. Alexandra Panova (RUS) 63 11 ret. (heat illness)
Hsieh Su-Wei (TPE) d. Nina Bratchikova (RUS) 75 63
Olga Govortsova (BLR) d. (Q) Zarina Diyas (KAZ) 75 62
(Q) Nudnina Luangnam (THA) d. Jarmila Gajdosova (AUS) 67(5) 64 62
(WC) Zheng Saisai (CHN) d. Julia Cohen (USA) 76(1) 75
(WC) Duan Ying-Ying (CHN) d. (Q) Luksika Kumkhum (THA) 62 61

Doubles – First Round
(1) Gajdosova/Niculescu (AUS/ROU) d. Savinykh/Xu (RUS/CHN) 61 75
(3) Tanasugarn/Zhang (THA/CHN) d. Sema/Sema (JPN/JPN) 61 62

Order Of Play – Wednesday, September 19, 2012
Centre Court (from 15.00hrs)
1. Bojana Jovanovski vs. Chanelle Scheepers
2. Peng Shuai vs. Nudnina Luangnam
3. Laura Robson vs. Zheng Jie (NB 18.00hrs)
4. Babos/Minella vs. Yan/Zhang (NB 19.00hrs; after suitable rest)

Court 2 (from 15.00hrs)
1. Alizé Cornet vs. Olga Govortsova
2. Duan Ying-Ying vs. Sorana Cirstea (NB 16.30hrs)
3. Cornet/Parmentier vs. Luzhanska/Zheng (NB 17.30hrs; after suitable rest)

Court 3 (from 15.00hrs)
1. Chang Kai-Chen vs. Hsieh Su-Wei
2. Urszula Radwanska vs. Mandy Minella
3. Hsieh/Hsieh vs. Kumkhum/Wongteanchai (NB 17.00hrs; after suitable rest)

Court 4 (from 16.00hrs)
1. Zheng Saisai vs. Mathilde Johansson
2. Liang/Tian vs. Han/Liu

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Kelly Peng (kpeng@wtatennis.com)

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Venus Has Her Designs On The Fourth Round

FLUSHING MEADOWS, NY – Venus Williams is more than a tennis player. She’s an author, fashion designer, and philanthropist.

And her work showed tonight at Arthur Ashe Stadium when she debuted a new outfit designed for the US Open designed by her company EleVen Designs.

“So far this year my outfits have been based off of cities that I play in,” Williams said after beating Mandy Minella, 6-2 6-1.  “This outfit was really about New York.  It’s firework bursts actually on the dress.  It’s like bursts of fireworks.  It’s about a celebration of me playing my best obviously at home and kind of doing what I love and being able to wear something fun while I do it.

“So just always trying to do something fun on the court.”

It probably was also fun to see her sister Serena in the stands. After bowing out of the Open with a foot injury, the younger Williams sister made her first appearance here, yet no one knows if this will be just a cameo or a regular thing.

“Of course, I’ve had her there so many matches,” she said.  “It was good to see her tonight.  Usually we’re at the tournament together.  This year is an exception, but always good to have her back.”

With such a wide open tournament on the women’s side, it will be interesting to see if Venus can win her first major since Wimbledon in 2008 and her first US Open since going back to back in 2000 and 2001.

But first things first, she needs to just win her matches, which is not as easy as it sounds. Williams will face No. 16 seed Shahar Pe’er in the fourth round, where the matches just get a little tougher. And even though both Williams sisters enjoy a 10-0 record against Pe’er, including Venus’s 6-3 6-0 win on Madrid back in May.

“Yeah, obviously she played a good match, and the first seed that I’ll have the opportunity to play,” Williams said.  “We’ve had a lot of good matches in the past.  I think one of the best matches in her career was against Serena ‑ that I watched.  So I know she has the talent to do something big.  She already has in her career.

“I want to just get out there and execute my game to the point where I get to that next round.”

And that’s what we are seeing from Venus. In past years, sometimes questions arose on her commitment to the game. Now see looks very focused, especially with Serena on the sidelines. The only question is her health and if the left knee, which made her miss the whole US Open Series will hold up.

To that there’s no problem, in fact she doesn’t feel any rust.

“Obviously, you know, just kind of about making the play,” she said. “My concern is always to be able to make the play and to play the level that I’m used to. So of course, you know, it’s something you think about.  But my whole thing was to try to bank on my experience, which so far is working.”

As was that dress.