Just as we said that the Dubai draw opened up for titleholder Agnieszka Radwanska with withdrawals of Victoria Azarenka and Serena Williams, the Pole went out to Petra Kvitova 6-2 6-4 in the quarterfinals, who has now recorded her first Top 5 win since her Wimbledon-winning 2011 season. Despite producing 38 unforced errors to 37 winners, Kvitova was better than Radwanska, whose numbers were modest six winners to five unforced errors. In the semifinals, the sixth-seeded Kvitova will play eighth seed Caroline Wozniacki, who battled past Marion Bartoli 4-6 6-1 6-4. The semifinal will be a clash of Top 2 players from the WTA rankings at the end of 2011.
The other Dubai semifinal will feature members of the top-ranked doubles pairing, Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci. The fifth-seeded Errani, who is 4-2 all-time against Vinci in singles, recovered from suffering a second-set bagel to defeat Nadia Petrova 6-4 0-6 6-3, while Vinci is enjoying one of the best weeks of her career, having recorded two straight Top 10 victories: against world No.6 Angelique Kerber on Wednesday and today against world No.9 Samantha Stosur 6-2 6-4. (photo: Ralf Reinecke)
That was such a shame. But Aga seemed totally off in that match. Really tired and listless, not at all the energetic ballerina she has been lately. Post-match interview, she mentioned something about evening matches being difficult, drinking lots of coffee and so on. I wonder what was up with that?
Still, I’m glad it was Kvitova who beat her, and despite her weird performance, Agy still made a respectable fist of it, imho.
Radwanska had no answers for the big-hitting Kvitova, who neutralized the Pole with a powerful forehand that contributed to 37 winners.
Neither player managed to hold serve in the nervy first five games. Then eighth-ranked Kvitova held for the first time to go up 4-2 and broke for a fourth time to make it 5-2. The second set was tighter, but Kvitova took control when she converted a fifth break chance in the game to go up 4-2. The Czech won the match with a powerful forehand that Radwanska returned weakly into the net.