Veterans Roberta Vinci and Svetlana Kuznetsova Advance Past Tricky Opponents To Wimbledon Second Round. - UBITENNIS
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Veterans Roberta Vinci and Svetlana Kuznetsova Advance Past Tricky Opponents To Wimbledon Second Round.

Due to the rain ending the play at Wimbledon early, not many big names appeared today, with the obvious exception of Serena Williams. The most notable of today’s players were the WTA tour veterans Roberta Vinci and Svetlana Kuznetsova, and recent Eastbourne winner Dominika Cibulkova.



The 6th seed Roberta Vinci was on upset alert in her opening round match against Alison Riske. The No. 1 Italian has not gone past first round at SW19 since 2013, and Alison Riske is a very dangerous opponent on a grass court. Vinci got an early break of 2-0, but Riske broke back for 2-2. The Italian then shifted into another gear and didn’t allow Riske to win another game. The veteran took a lead of 4-2 in the second set as well, but Riske kept on fighting and won the second set 7-5. Riske took a lead of 3-1 in the final set, and Vinci showed her experience and why she is a Top 10 player, winning 5 games in a row and the match, the final scoreline read 6-2 5-7 6-3 for Vinci. The 6th seed Roberta Vinci will next face the Chinese lucky loser Duan Ying Ying.

“I’m try(ing) to play aggressive, try to play my game,” explained Vinci, acknowledging the difficulties in closing out the win. “At the end, I was a little bit nervous. A lot of match point saved. But I’m happy. Finally I won.”

“I’m the top 10. I’m No.6 (seed). I’m so happy. I play today on Court No.3, a good court. Of course, I’m happy. I like to enjoy this tournament, of course, try my best. Every single match will be tough. But step by step.”

Svetlana Kuznetsova, seeded 13th, had a much more well known opponent. The Russian faced a former World No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki, who after her injuries dropped down to No. 45 in the rankings. The first set was very level between both players and it resulted in Kuznetsova winning 7-5. Kuznetsova continued to use her power and hit through Wozniacki, which rapidly gave her a 4-0 lead in the second set. Kuznetsova was at 5-1, 30-0 in the second set, when Wozniacki won 12 points in a row to make it 4-5. Kuznetsova didn’t flinch and served the match out, 7-5 6-4.

Other seeded players that advanced to the second round today were the 19th seed Dominika Cibulkova, who recently won Eastbourne. The Slovak dealt with Mirjana Lucic-Baroni of Croatia in striaght sets 7-5 6-3. 27th seed Coco Vandeweghe also had a challenging opponent on grass, who was Kateryna Bondarenko. This match played under the Centre Court roof was won by the American 6-2 7-6(3). Caroline Garcia, seeded 30th, was faced with the task of defeating Turkey’s finest Cagla Buyukakcay. She did so in an impressive manner, winning 6-2 6-3.

Four Wimbledon wild cards were in action today as well. Tara Moore was the only one to take advantage of it, as she cruised past Alison Van Uytvanck 6-2 6-3. Daniela Hantuchova, Marina Melnikova and Katie Swan all lost their matches in straight sets.

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Emma Raducanu Confident Of Full Fitness Ahead Of Grass Swing



Emma Raducanu - Cincinnati 2022 (foto Twitter @cincytennis)

Emma Raducanu has no regrets about her decision to skip the French Open and now believes she is in a ‘really fit place’ ahead of Wimbledon. 

The former US Open champion opted to end her clay season earlier than other players to focus on fitness and training with her coach. Raducanu stated earlier this year that her primary focus in 2024 is on her health after undergoing a series of wrist and ankle surgeries last year which sidelined her for months. 

Raducanu will return to action this week at the Nottingham Open, which is the event where she made her WTA main draw debut back in 2021. Despite her lack of match play in recent weeks, the Brit is feeling good and relishing her return to the grass.

“Body-wise, physical-wise, I feel really healthy,” she said on Monday.
“I’ve done amazing work with my trainer over the last few months, since surgery. I’m in a really fit place. I’m healthy and just looking forward to starting playing.”

Shedding more light on her health, Raducanu says she has full confidence in her wrists and believes they are in top condition. Making her feel more at ease when playing matches on the Tour. 

“I think my wrists are actually in a better position than they ever were. So there’s zero doubt or apprehension whether I’m hitting the ball or designing my schedule,” she explained.
“It’s more about being proactive and not wanting to put yourself in any unnecessary situations. I don’t need to rush and try to win the French Open, it wasn’t my goal this year.
“I had to prioritise where I wanted to target and it was just a good block for me to get some physical work done.”

Raducanu has played seven WTA events so far this season with her best run being to the quarter-finals of the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix in Stuttgart, where she was beaten by world No.1 Iga Swiatek. The 21-year-old is currently ranked 209th in the world. 

At the Nottingham Open, she will play her first match on Tuesday against Japanese qualifier Ena Shibahara. 

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Russian World No.78 Elina Avanesyan To Switch Nationalities



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A week after losing her fourth round match at the French Open, a government minister has confirmed that Elina Avanesyan is in the process of changing the nationality of who she plays for. 

The 21-year-old is switching her aligence from Russia to Armenia, according to Armenia’s deputy Minister of International Affairs and communication. Karen Giloyan has told the news agency Armenpress that Avanesyan will soon be representing his country. However, the tennis player has yet to comment on the matter.  Avanesyan was born in Russia but has Armenian parents.

“Elina Avanesyan will compete under the Armenian flag, but there is nothing official yet. We are waiting for her to get the citizenship of the Republic of Armenia so that everything will be official,” Giloyan told Armenpress.

Such a development would be a massive coup for the Armenian tennis federation which currently doesn’t have a player ranked inside the top 500 on either the men’s or women’s Tour. The country has a population of less than 3M. Perhaps their best-known player is Sargis Sargsian who reached the top 40 back in 2004. Others on the Tour also have Armenian heritage but don’t represent the country such as Karen Khachanov.  

Avanesyan is currently ranked 78th in the world, which is 18 places below her career high. This season, she has scored high-profile wins over Maria Sakkari at the Australian Open, Ons Jabeur in Charleston and Qinwen Zhang at the French Open. 

She has yet to play in the final of a WTA tournament.

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Iga Looks To Be In A league All to Herself At Paris

Iga Swiatek claimed her fourth Roland Garros title in Paris.



(@Eurosport - Twitter)

Just call her Iga. No other identification is needed.

As the years go by, Iga’s notoriety is sure to grow.

She’s probably already earned a spot in tennis’ Hall of Fame.

Yes, Iga Swiatek is a name to remember. A hero in her native Poland, a superstar in the world of sports.


Iga just added to her stardom Saturday with an impressive 6-2, 6-1 victory over little-known Italian Jasmine Paolini to win her third straight French Open title. This was Paolini’s chance to make a name for herself, but she didn’t have the game to make it happen.

Iga was just too good. She made it look too easy.

Paolini could hit some great ground strokes, but when she looked up a bigger shot was on its way back. Iga doesn’t look like a power hitter, but she is.


The 23-year-old Polish Wonder finished the first set winning five straight games, then started the second set winning five more games in succession. The 28-year-old Paolini didn’t seem to have a clue on how to upend Swiatek.

It took just 78 minutes for Iga to win her fifth Grand Slam title.

She’s a lot like her French Open hero, Rafa Nadal.

She takes every match seriously.


No wonder Iga owns a 35-2 record at Roland Garos. Or that she has won 21 straight matches. Or that she owns a 5-0 record in Grand Slam finals.

She only dominated opponents, except for Naomi Osaka in the second round. Swiatek escaped a match point in that one and didn’t look back.

Iga’s game should be just as superb on the green grass of upcoming Wimbledon.

James Beck was the 2003 winner of the USTA National Media Award  for print media. A 1995 MBA graduate of The Citadel, he can be reached at

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