The Qatar Open / WTA Doha is in full swing this week and already there have been some eye-catching results in the always entertaining women’s tennis tournament, as you can watch the action live streaming online with Radwanska v Christina McHale, Victoria Azarenka v Yanina Wickmayer, Monica Niculescu v Samantha Stosur and Marion Bartoli v Lucie Safarova the pick of the games.
Across the earlier matches, one of the biggest upsets was the omission of former World No.1 Jelena Jankovic who was defeated by Israel’s Shahar Peer thanks to the latter’s fast-moving, aggressive and focused game plan.
Jankovic on the other hand was never at her best and was perhaps guilty of expecting an easier task against the relatively unknown Peer. She then paid the price for her failings as she failed to make the third round.
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Jankovic wasn’t alone in suffering a surprise exit from the tournament. Even the defending champion Vera Zvonareva was forced to retire with a hip injury and she was trailing the match at the time.
Then, Caroline Wozniacki – who currently sits at No.4 in the World rankings – lost in three sets to Lucie Safarova of the Czech Republic. Everything seemed on track when Wozniacki won the first set, but she fell apart and it was Safarova that handled the pressure of a third set tie break.
These three defeats for leading players in the women’s game show that you cannot take anything for granted at the Qutar Total Open and the remaining players will no doubt take this into account in the remainder of the tournament.
As for what is to look forward to in the third round, 4th seed Agnieszka Radwanska – who knocked out Britain’s Anne Keothavong in the last round – takes on Christina McHale of the USA, while No.1 seed Victoria Azarenka faces 20-year-old Beligian Yanina Wickmayer in the two stand out matches.
It is of course Radwanska and Azarenka that are expected to progress, but who knows what could happen. Their opponents are bound to raise their game and if their standards slip at all, they could be heading home early.
The Qatar Total Open continues from 12.30pm on Friday afternoon.