2005 San Diego WTA Singles Results     Mary Pierce, Champion

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  WTA Aug 1-7

Acura Classic, San Diego, CA Tier I
$1,300,000 - 56 players - outdoor: hard

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# 4 Svetlana Kuznetsova
# 6 Elena Dementieva
# 8 Nadia Petrova RUS
# 12 Patty Schnyder
# 13 Mary Pierce
# 14 Kim Clijsters
# 15 Vera Zvonareva
# 16 Elena Likhovtseva

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San Diego:
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#13 Mary Pierce
5' 10", 150 lbs, RH 2H-BH
San Diego:
click for Sugiyama news photo search
#33 Ai Sugiyama
5' 4", 121 lbs, RH, 2H-BH
    On Sunday in the final of the Acura Classic near Carlsbad, California (about 45 minutes north of San Diego), 30-year-old 6th-seeded # 13 Mary Pierce of France defeated 30-year-old # 33 Ai Sugiyama from Kanagawa, Japan, 6-0, 6-3 (Mary is shown during the final; Ai is shown cannonballing a serve to Akiko Morigami during their semi on Saturday).
    Mary said: "It's great to win my first Tier I in a while. I was playing very well. I've put a lot of emphasis on my serves and returns. That's where the point starts, and I think in the important moments, I was really serving well and attacking... [Ai has] always been a tough opponent for me, so I think today's match really showed how much I've improved." WTA story
    Ai said: "[Mary] played so great, so aggressively. Every point was tough for me because she was all over every ball. In the second set, I raised my game and was moving better, playing it point by point, but she was still too good. She was serving so well and I don't think that my serve matched up to hers."

    After an hour's rest, Ai returned to the court for the doubles final, where she and partner Daniela Hantuchova were defeated by Virginia Ruano Pascual, currently # 1 at doubles, and Conchita Martinez, who parks her Harley-Davidson at her San Diego residence, 6(7)-7, 6-1, 7-5.

    Mary Pierce has now won 17 WTA singles titles (including the 2000 French Open and the 1995 Australian Open) in 37 finals. Mary whose mother is French, was born in Montreal, Canada, and raised mostly in Florida. Mary's residence is listed as Sarasota, Florida, but her apartment is actually at the Bollettieri Academy in Bradenton, FL (though she does train in France also). Her nationality was declared French when she 15, and the USTA seemed more interested in helping other players more than her. Mary used to wear Nike, and chop with a Yonex "Ultimum RD Ti-80" axe. This year she is wearing custom garb, and says she is is testing fabrics to possibly create her own line of tennis togs. Her bat is still a Yonex, although their logo no longer appears on the strings.
    Mary reached a career-high rank of # 3 in 1995, and spent much of the next 5 years in top 10. She won at Roland Garros in 2000, then was injured just before the start of the 2001 French Open, and was out the rest of the year. Mary was then plagued by a series of injuries, which only tapered off last year.
    Mary reached the final of this year's French Open, and the ranking points she earned (including 200 "quality points" for defeating # 1 Lindsay Davenport) at Roland Garros put her back in the top 20 again for the first time in over 4 years, at # 13.
Pierce career record

    Ai Sugiyama has won 6 of the 11 WTA tourney singles finals she has played in; her last singles title came at Gold Coast, Australia, in January, 2004, where Ai defeated Nadia Petrova 1-6, 6-1, 6-4. After that win Ai's singles ranking reached a career high of # 8, but this is the first final she has reached since. Ai also has won 31 WTA doubles titles, including 2 Grand Slams, with partners including Kim Clijsters, Daniela Hantuchova, and Elena Likhovtseva.
    Ai wears Nike and swings a Prince Tour Harrier 97" bat, a model which is sold only in Asia, but which reportedly is the same as the More Control DB 800 MP sold in the US. Ai is coached by her mother Fusako, and trains at Saddlebrook Resort near Tampa, Florida, USA, where exists one of the densest concentrations of WTA players in the world. Ai has recently been working with a new hitting partner (Simone Amorico, an Italian) and a new fitness trainer, and after a year-long slump, her singles results have been improving again.
Sugiyama career record - Ai Sugiyama Wallpaper

San Diego:
    The main draw for San Diego has 16 seeds, with 8 1st-round byes. There are 4 qualifiers and 4 wild cards in the main draw. Qualifying finals are on Sunday.
    San Diego time is GMT (UCT, ZULU) - 7 hours (=US Pacific Daylight Time, EDT -3). Early round play begins at 10am local time. San Diego DOES have live scoring, including qualifying.

WTA SCOREBOARD: San Diego

s=seed, #=rank, *=upset, LL=lucky loser
ranks are for the previous week
How do players get into the "draw"?


click for WTA San Diego photo gallery
Kim Clijsters, who won last week at Stanford,
met the press during the "all access hour" on Monday

San Diego, 1st Rd, Mon-Tue 10am
losers' prize: $3,325 US; points: 1
#18 s10 Nathalie Dechy FRA d #68 Kristina Brandi PUR 6-2, 6-2 Tue
#19 s11 Jelena Jankovic SCG d #59 Amy Frazier USA 7-5, 6-0 Tue

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Jelena Jankovic

*#35 Anna Chakvetadze RUS d #22 s12 Tatiana Golovin FRA 6-4, 6-4 Mon

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Anna Chakvetadze

*#47 Sesil Karatantcheva BUL d #23 s13 Shinobu Asagoe JPN 6-1, 0-6, 7-5 Mon
#24 s14 Daniela Hantuchova SVK d #48 Maria Kirilenko RUS 7-6(5), 6-1 Mon
#25 s15 Flavia Pennetta ITA d #98 LL Marissa Irvin USA 6-2, 6-2 Mon
#26 s16 Dinara Safina RUS d #43 Conchita Martinez ESP 7-6(11), 6-4 Mon
#28 s17 Francesca Schiavone ITA d #75 wc Abigail Spears USA 6-3, 6-2 Tue

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Francesca Schiavone

#29 Gisela Dulko ARG d #165 q Saori Obata JPN 7-6(3), 1-6, 6-3 Mon

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Gisela Dulko

*#51 Lisa Raymond USA d #30 Marion Bartoli FRA 1-6, 6-0, 6-3 Mon

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Lisa Raymond

#33 Ai Sugiyama JPN d #69 Meghann Shaughnessy USA 3-0 retired--
   low back strain
Tue
#34 Klara Koukalova CZE d #36 Evgenia Linetskaya RUS 7-6, 5-7, 6-1 Mon
#39 Anna-lena Groenefeld GER d #58 wc Eleni Daniilidou GRE 7-6(5), 6-4 Tue
#41 Kveta Peschke CZE d #56 wc Jill Craybas USA 0-6 6-1 7-6(2) Tue
*#53 Iveta Benesova CZE d #45 Fabiola Zuluaga COL 6-2, 3-6, 7-5 Mon
#46 Shuai Peng CHN d #143 q Maria-Emilia Salerni ARG 7-5, 6-1 Mon
*#62 Shahar Peer ISR d #49 Dally Randriantefy MAD 2-6, 6-3, 6-4 Mon
#50 Marta Domachowska POL d #55 Laura Granville USA 3-6, 6-0, 7-6(9) Mon
*#267 q Anastassia Rodionova RUS d #52 Samantha Stosur AUS 6-3, 6-2 Tue
#57 Mashona Washington USA d #61 Karolina Sprem CRO 2-6, 7-6(1), 6-1 Tue
#60 Akiko Morigami JPN d sr63 Maja Matevzic SLO 6-1, 6-0 Mon
#64 q Sania Mirza IND d #78 q Tathiana Garbin ITA 6-2, 6-2 Tue

    Sania said: "I like the hard court season. I like to think I have an aggressive game that works well on hard courts."

*#130 q Hana Sromava CZE d #73 Maria Vento-Kabchi VEN 6-4, 7-5 Mon
#79 q Alina Jidkova RUS d #82 q Aiko Nakamura JPN 6-2, 6-2 Mon
San Diego, 2nd Rd, Tue-Wed 10am WTA Tue story - WTA Wed story
losers' prize: $6,500 US; points: 25
#4 s2 Svetlana Kuznetsova RUS vd #34 Klara Koukalova CZE 7-5, 6-3 Tue

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Svetlana Kuznetsova

    Svetlana said: "I played my defensive tennis against [Klara] and she played her best tennis. I couldn't get the rhythm off the of the ball. First matches can be difficult so I'm happy to get through to the next round."

*#46 Shuai Peng CHN #6 s3 Elena Dementieva RUS 7-5, 6-4 Tue

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Shuai after match point

    Shuai said: "I wasn't thinking I was playing a top player, only to play my game and fight for every point... I'm happy that I beat a higher ranked player, but I want to keep improving." Reuters story

    Elena has practiced with Shuai often. Elena said: "This was definitely a tough first match. [Shuai is] a very good player, one of the best young up and coming players this year. She has a very solid game, great from the baseline and moves very well... I thought there were just a couple of points that made the match. I don't think I did anything wrong, and thought I played well, she just played the important points better."

*#64 q Sania Mirza IND d #8 s4 Nadia Petrova RUS 6-2, 6-1 Wed

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Sania Mirza

    Nadia was playing with a heavily taped right elbow which she had strained earlier in the week while practicing. Nadia said: "[Sania is] a very good young player, very powerful, has great groundstrokes. The most difficult thing was that I hadn't really played a match in three weeks, and I had to play someone so powerful. She definitely was not an easy person to play in my first match... I'm not disappointed. My arm is getting better and hopefully, I'll get more practice matches in, get in better shape and be ready for Los Angeles."

#12 s5 Patty Schnyder SUI d #41 Kveta Peschke CZE 6-4, 6(2)-7, 6-1 Wed

    Patty said: "I would have liked to be two breaks up in the second set and finish it off, but a win's a win. I'll definitely be ready tomorrow."

#13 s6 Mary Pierce FRA d #39 Anna-Lena Groenefeld GER 6-1, 6-1 Wed

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Mary Pierce

    Mary said: "I took Anna-Lena extremely seriously today. She's really gotten fitter and has had some great results lately. I came out from the very beginning in the first point of the match ready to play... I felt like I served well, returned well, moved well, and actually surprised myself with how well I played today." match summary

#14 s7 Kim Clijsters BEL d #50 Marta Domachowska POL 6-3, 6-1 Wed

click for Clijsters news photo search click for WTA photo gallery
Kim's splits forehand, and Kim with tennis legend Pancho Segura

    Kim was presented with an award for "Comeback Player of the Year," and posed for a photo with Francisco "Pancho" (aka "Segoo") Segura, who received a "Legends" award. Segura's strong & accurate two-handed forehand earned him a place in tennis history, mostly in the 40s and 50s (3 of the ladies in the 2005 Acura main draw use the 2-handed forehand: Akiko Morigami, Shuai Peng, and Marion Bartoli). Segura is also appreciated for his sense of humor.

    About the match Kim said: "In the beginning, [Marta] made some great shots, some good volleys, but I kept focused and eventually she started to miss...
    "The fans and everyone here have been supporting me and saying that I can win it this time, but no player can think that way. It's not as easy as what people are saying to me."

*#57 Mashona Washington USA d #15 s8 Vera Zvonareva RUS 6-4, 4-6, 6-4 Wed
#16 s9 Elena Likhovtseva RUS d #62 Shahar Peer ISR 0-6, 6-2, 6-4 Wed
#18 s10 Nathalie Dechy FRA d #29 Gisela Dulko ARG 4-6, 7-5, 7-6(3) Wed

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Nathalie Dechy

    Nathalie said: "I had a real battle this morning, winning in the breaker of the final set after three hours spent on the court.
    "When I came out, my feet were burning so much... I took a cold shower, stretching, massage, pasta, nap and then I was back on-court for dubs with Francesca. Even if we didn't win that one, I had so much fun playing with her and I never laugh so much on the court, and the crowd too.
    "Then it was time for bike, stretching, massage and there we go. It's nice to know that I'm playing the night match tomorrow..." Nathalie's WTA Diary

#19 s11 Jelena Jankovic SCG d #130 q Hana Sromava CZE 6-3, 6-2 Wed
*#33 Ai Sugiyama JPN d #24 s14 Daniela Hantuchova SVK 7-5, 4-6, 6-2 Wed

click for Sugiyama news photo search
Ai Sugiyama

*#60 Akiko Morigami JPN d #25 s15 Flavia Pennetta ITA 6-1, 7-5 Tue
#26 s16 Dinara Safina RUS d #79 q Alina Jidkova RUS 0-6, 6-1, 6-0Wed
#28 s17 Francesca Schiavone ITA d #267 q Anastassia Rodionova RUS 6-2, 6-2 Wed
#35 Anna Chakvetadze RUS d #53 Iveta Benesova CZE 6-4, 6-3 Tue
#47 Sesil Karatantcheva BUL d #51 Lisa Raymond USA 7-6(6), 6-4 Wed
San Diego, 3rd Rd, Thu 10am WTA story
losers' prize: $12,775 US; points: 42
*#33 Ai Sugiyama JPN d #4 s2 Svetlana Kuznetsova RUS 2-6, 6-4, 6-3

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Ai Sugiyama

    This is probably Ai's biggest win in singles since she defeated Nadia Petrova 1-6, 6-1, 6-4 to win the Gold Coast title in January, 2004. After that win Ai's singles ranking reached a career high of # 8.

    Ai has been working with a new hitting partner (Simone Amorico, an Italian) and a new fitness trainer. Ai said: "My goal is to get back into the top 10. My fitness is getting better and with the new team I'm getting my confidence back. I don't want to end my career not playing at the level I'm capable of." Reuters story

    Svetlana said: "[Ai] concentrated during the whole match and I didn't. I had too many ups and downs. [The past] month was the longest break I've ever had from tennis, and I need some more matches before I get my form back... I think I was playing good tennis at times. I just didn't keep my level at the top... I gave her a chance to get into the match in the second [set]. And in the third, it was much more difficult to beat her." AP story

#12 s5 Patty Schnyder SUI d #28 s17 Francesca Schiavone ITA 6(1)-7, 6-1, 6-4

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Patty Schnyder

#13 s6 Mary Pierce FRA d #18 s10 Nathalie Dechy FRA 7-5, 6-3

    Mary said: "Nathalie played very well, especially her defensive game. Sometimes, her shots were just too good, so I just focused on being aggressive. I was happy that I was able to serve out the match."

#14 s7 Kim Clijsters BEL d #19 s11 Jelena Jankovic SCG 6-1, 6-3

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Kim Clijsters

*#35 Anna Chakvetadze RUS d #16 s9 Elena Likhovtseva RUS 6-3, 6-1
*#46 Shuai Peng CHN d #26 s16 Dinara Safina RUS 7-6(2), 6-0
#47 Sesil Karatantcheva BUL v #57 Mashona Washington USA 6-1, 6-2
#60 Akiko Morigami JPN d #64 q Sania Mirza IND 6-2, 4-6, 6-4

click for Morigami news photo search
Akiko Morigami

San Diego, QFs, Fri 10am WTA story
losers' prize: $25,050 US; points: 75
*#13 s6 Mary Pierce FRA d #12 s5 Patty Schnyder SUI 6-4, 6-3

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Mary Pierce

    Mary said: "Patty is a great player, she always puts up a great fight against me. I think I played well. It wasn't my best match, but she made it difficult in the end. On the big points, she would just keep hitting winners. The key for me is to be aggressive and play my game."

    Patty said: "[Mary] played great. I was really tired, my arm is hurting a bit, my back is hurting a bit. She has her first tournament (since Wimbledon) and I'm on my third. So if you're not like 100 percent, she's too tough."

*#46 Shuai Peng CHN d #14 s7 Kim Clijsters BEL 6-4, 6-4

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Shuai Peng

    Shuai said: "This was my first time to play Kim Clijsters and at the beginning of the match, I was so nervous that I didn't think too much, just hit. I kept telling myself to believe that I could win and to take all my chances."
    Kim said: "[Shuai is] probably one of the best hitters I've played so far. I tried to change it up but she had an answer for everything. I don't think I played bad. In fact, I don't put any blame on myself; she just played so well and didn't miss."

#33 Ai Sugiyama JPN d #47 Sesil Karatantcheva BUL 6-1, 6-2

click for Sugiyama news photo search
Ai Sugiyama

    Ai said: "The score looks easy, but for me it was not easy at all. [Sesil] runs pretty good side to side. If I had a long rally it was good to me because I could put her down a little bit. It's more mental game, especially the second set." Daily Tribune story

*#60 Akiko Morigami JPN d #35 Anna Chakvetadze RUS 6-3, 6-4

click for Morigami news photo search click for Morigami news photo search
Right-handed Akiko swings her bat with both hands from both sides,
as do Shuai Peng, Marion Bartoli, Maria Antonia Sanchez Lorenzo, Arantxa Parra Santonja,
Antonella Serra Zanetti, and injured-but-unretired Monica Seles, to name a few

San Diego, SFs, Sat 12:30 & 6:30pm
losers' prize: $49,125 US; points: 135
#13 s6 Mary Pierce FRA d #46 Shuai Peng CHN 6-2, 2-2

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Mary sending a twist serve to Shuai

    Mary said: "[Shuai is] a dangerous player. I know she had a long night last night, but I didn't expect or hope that she would be tired, because you just can't do that. I definitely had to stay on top of things and stay aggressive." WTA story

#33 Ai Sugiyama JPN d #60 Akiko Morigami JPN 6-4 4-3 retired-- right knee tendonitis

click for Sugiyama news photo search
Ai delivering a cannonball serve to Akiko

    Akiko said: "Ai was playing so well today. My knee has been bothering me since Cincinnati [where Akiko reached her first WTA singles final], but it was getting worse. She was making me run so much, so when I dropped the first set, I knew I would have a hard time."
    Ai said: "It's been such a long time for me to be in a final. Of course, I'm sorry for Akiko and that we couldn't finish our match tonight."

San Diego, Final, Sun 1:30pm
loser's prize: $96,000 US; points: 210
winner's prize: $189,000 US; points: 300
#13 s6 Mary Pierce FRA d #33 Ai Sugiyama JPN 6-0, 6-3

click for Pierce news photo search
Mary and Ai after match point

San Diego, Doubles Final, Sun
losers' prize: $15,700 US
winners' prize: $29,000 US
cdr28 s3 Virginia Ruano Pascual & Conchita Martinez d cdr38 s5 Ai Sugiyama & Daniela Hantuchova 6(7)-7, 6-1, 7-5

click for Ruano Pascual news photo search
"Vivi" and Conchita after match point


San Diego, Qual Finals, Sun Jul 31 10am
losers' prize: $865 US
#64 Sania Mirza IND d #196 Kateryna Bondarenko UKR 6-4, 7-6
#78 Tathiana Garbin ITA d #161 J Vakulenko UKR 7-5, 1-0, retired
#79 Alina Jidkova RUS d #118 V Ruano Pascual ESP 6-2, 2-6, 6-0
#82 Aiko Nakamura JPN d #131 Shikha Uberoi IND 6-1, 6-0
*#130 Hana Sromava CZE d #98 Marissa Irvin USA 7-5, 3-6, 6-2
*#267 Anastassia Rodionova RUS d #107 Yuliana Fedak UKR 6-4, 7-6(7)
*#143 Maria-Emilia Salerni ARG d #127 Shenay Perry USA 6-0, retired
#165 Saori Obata JPN d #945 Alexandra Stevenson USA 6-2, 6-4

San Diego, Withdrawals
#1 s1 Lindsay Davenport USA low back strain
#2 Maria Sharapova RUS low back strain
#7 Serena Williams USA left ankle
#17 Elena Bovina RUS right shoulder
#85 Paola Suarez ARG hip
#129 Chanda Rubin USA left ankle

2004 San Diego tourney page

 "Short arms and deep pockets" (page 216)

    The general attitude of the Aussies toward spending cash was best summed up once by Segoo [Francisco "Pancho" Segura] when an Australian radio reporter asked him to name his single biggest thrill in tennis. "The night Frank Segdman bought dinner," Segoo replied.

see more excerpts from The Game: My 40 Years in Tennis by Jack Kramer with Frank Deford

    (Jul 31, 2005) # 1 Lindsay Davenport has withdrawn from the Acura Classic which begins August 1 in San Diego. Lindsay has been having pain and spasms on the lower left side of her back, troubling her most when she extends while serving, or turns. She incurred the injury during her 4-6, 7-6(4), 9-7 loss to Venus Williams in the Wimbledon final early this month.
    # 2 Maria Sharapova and # 7 Serena Willams also withdrew from the Acura. Maria also withdrew due to a low back strain. Serena is still troubled by a injured left ankle which she incurred last April in the quarterfinals of the Bausch & Lomb Championships at Amelia Island, Florida. The injury caused Serena to miss the French Open. After losing in the 3rd round at Wimbledon in June, Serena said that the injury had been a hairline fracture, and that is was still troubling her, although it was not the cause of her defeat.

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