Zheng wins Auckland as Pennetta adds her name to the injured players list


At the ASB Classic in Auckland, world No.34 Zheng Jie won her first title since 2006, but the final match was an unfinished battle, as her opponent Flavia Pennetta retired at 2-6 6-3 2-0 with a low back injury. We’re only a week into the tennis season, and the number of WTA players injured or ill is close to ten.

In the first round Zheng defeated Ayumi Morita, in the second eighth seeded Monica Niculescu, in the quarterfinals Lucie Hradecka, then third seed Svetlana Kuznetsova for the first time in their seven meetings, and finally Pennetta.

Zheng’s first title came in Hobart in 2005, and since winning Estoril and Stockholm in 2006 she hasn’t clinched any titles, even though she played two Grand Slam semifinals – at Wimbledon 2008 and Australian Open 2010.

Regarding Pennetta’s injury, she started feeling it at 4-2 in the first set and an MRI scan will reveal how serious it is.


  1. Poor Flavia… I hoped so much for her!!! 🙁

    These injuries in the first week of the 2012 season… This isn’t normal! God seems to hate the Tennis-Ladies!!

  2. I pretty much like Flavia so I don’t want to be negative. But come on! All those players, first tiniest sight of a potential small injury, and they stop playing. Are they all sponsored by MRI brand manufacturer or what? Even Federer is now doing it. When I have a small cold, I still go to work…

  3. I think you will find that the top players want to preserve themselves for the upcoming Grand Slam tournament, and not play on and thereby risk further injury, which might impact their ability to play the biggest tournaments. We always seem to see more withdrawals in the weeks running up to a Grand Slam tournament, so I wouldn’t say this is anything unusual.

  4. Pity about Flavia (one of my favourites) – but, at the same time, wonderful that Zheng Jie won the tournament (beating, amongst others, Kuznyetsova along the way), after almost six years of misfortune. No tinier a frame, no larger a heart.


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