Whew, what a day. From seeing Azarenka struggling to win her first round match, to being knocked out of Suicide Pool, to watching Petra Kvitova show us why many thought she would assume the keys to the WTA Penthouse, to having lots of snark from the ladies in the press room, Day 2 of the US Open finally came to an end, when Serena Williams showed off her best tennis in taking out up and coming teenage prodigy Taylor Townsend in straight sets. The hug at the net was symbolic of the respect that both women have for each other.
15 year old Ceci Bellis pulled the upset of the tournament when she took out No. 12 seed and this year’s Australian Open finalist, Dominika Cibulkova in 3 hard fought sets. While credit should be given to Bellis for pulling the upset, we should really take stock of Cibulkova and try and find out just what has gone wrong with her since having that wonderful run in Australia and now. I have watched a few of Cibulkova’s matches this year and I can only assume that she is playing with an injury of some sort, either that or her mental game has completely deserted her in tight moments. This is the same woman who saved multiple set and match points to defeat Radwanska earlier this season in a match that was must see tv. The Spin team hopes that whatever it is that ails Cibulkova will not derail her too much.
Day 3 Order of Play is below with the Spin’s Picks in red.
Arthur Ashe Stadium
Sloane Stephens (USA) v Johanna Larsson (SWE)
Maria Sharapova (RUS) v Alexandra Dulgheru (ROU)
Timea Bacsinszky (SUI) v Venus Williams (USA)
Shuai Peng (CHN) v Agnieszka Radwanska (POL)
Jana Cepelova (SVK) v Simona Halep (ROU)
Tsvetana Pironkova (BUL) v Jelena Jankovic (SRB)
Aliaksandra Sasnovich (BLR) v Caroline Wozniacki (DEN)
Madison Brengle (USA) v Sabine Lisicki (GER)
Daniela Hantuchova (SVK) v Alize Cornet (FRA)
Sara Errani (ITA) v Anastasia Rodionova (AUS)
Angelique Kerber (GER) v Alla Kdrayavtseva (RUS)
Belinda Bencic (SUI) v Kurumi Nara (JPN)
Andrea Petkovic (GER) v Monica Puig (PUR)
Mirjani Lucic-Baroni (CRO) v Shahar Peer (ISR)
Lucie Safarova (CZE) v Saisai Zheng (CHN)
Roberta Vinci (ITA) v Irina-Camelia Begu (ROU)
Match(es) of the Day
Pironkova v Jankovic – how good is Jankovic playing or better question, will Pironkova make her life miserable out there today? This one should be a good one as if Jankovic is not on her game, then Pironkova can make her life a living hell. This will be a battle of the backhands as the outcome of the match will be between which player can use her signature shot to finish points.
Radwanska v Peng – Peng has been playing really good tennis and she seems to be healthy. Is she ready to take her game to the next level? Only time and perhaps this match will tell. Radwanska did little or nothing in her first round match but Peng is a much better opponent.
Is it an upset if Sabine Lisicki goes out to Madison Brengle? The pro-US crowd will be behind Brengle and this could have either Lisicki playing balls to the wall tennis or fading away. The other question is whether Lisicki is looking forward to her potential third round match against Sharapova? That third round match would be a pretty juicy affair if it happens, but Sharapova will no doubt have to get past Dulgheru who can frustrate her into hitting error after error with her dogged defence.