Sunday, January 19, 2014


What a terrific tennis match! Ana Ivanovic defeats Serena Williams in Round 4 Day 7 at the Australian Open 2014!  This is BIG NEWS, and a HUGE congratulations to Ana for her steady, powerful, smart playing against world number 1, Serena Williams.

courtesy Getty Images
The match opens with Serena Williams serving, and some back and forth, Ana breaks Serena but Serena breaks back and takes the first set 6-4. Ugh-oh.  We, the crowd, and myself, are worried that Ana will freeze in the second set, and Serena will advance.  

This match marks Serena's 23rd consecutive win, and she is going for a 24th. I get the sense from Serena that she is not too concerned with this match, she will play hard, but expects to win.  And I understand that.  Ana has a pattern of choking at critical points, just not quite making the shot when necessary. This is known in the tennis community, as I am sure by Ana herself. I love Ana, she does not compromise her feminine side, she embraces her beauty, her appreciation for the game, and strives to improve upon impossible circumstances. Her tenacity is her asset.  And she delivers.

In set 2 she defeats Williams 6-3.  I get the sense Serena Williams is totally off balance, what is going on here?  In true trooper form, Ana remains steadfast, focused on each shot, keeping her mind in the moment, letting Serena make her aces, so what?  

As long as Ana keeps her balls angled to the sides, she has a BIG chance of winning the point. And she does. The longer the ball stays in play, the better chance Ana has of winning the point. Smart tennis.

Ana also gets to net more, her volleys are sharp, angled, and impossible to return. Her serves are strong, mostly angled wide, and she is keeping Williams quite uncomfortable on those outside lines. Ivanovic knows it.  Ana hits one ball deep to the corners, then next ball to the other side deep to the corners. She has Serena on the run, it is impossible for Williams to get the ball placed to off put Ana.

In the third set, Ivanovic wins at 6-3.  This is an incredible set, where she breaks Williams twice, and stays on serve.  Classic tennis.  This Australian Open crowd is clearly on Ana's side, cheering her on, and she had a few lucky moments besides.  A ball hugs the net then drops in. Point to Ana.  Don't we all love that shot, when it benefits us?  And Serena William's game begins to break down.  She serves up her powerful, untouchable aces, 13 in all for this match, but continues to have a few double faults besides. She is on the defense with Ana's buggy- whip forehand to the lines, and is nonplussed on how to get out of her dilemma.

Watching the final few games, one has the sense that Serena will catch up at any time.  After all, Serena Williams is a champion.  AND, so is Ana Ivanovic.  She won the French Open in 2008, however it has been shown that the fame and glare of being number 1 on the public stage was overwhelming, and her status dropped. Regardless, Ana hung in there ever since, did not get swallowed up with negativity, and her game has evolved to the best it has ever been. Her coach  Nemanja Kontic and trainers must be so proud, and her parents and family, too, all cheering her on!

The third set exhibits a wonderful example of how the game of tennis is played. The beginning marks 3-0 for Ana. The suspense continues with Ana leading at  5-2, but you know if Serena wins on her serve then the score would be 5-3, and if Ana breaks on her serve then the score would be 5-4, and Serena would then be back in the game and ready to run away for a win. Just a few more. And she could do that.

But, that did NOT happen.  Ana remains herself. Sweet, focused, powerful.  Even she at one moment in the match shook her head and smiled, appreciating the gods on her side, the encouraging crowd, only focusing on her side of the net and not paying attention to a very angry Serena Williams. 

To close out the match, Ana serves up a shot that Serena returns long, does Ana need to say any more as to who is a champion now?

Sound easy? Try to get out there yourself, once in the ring, variables surround you, on multiple levels. Ana Ivanovic has given us all inspiration on how to maintain composure under extreme duress. Stay who you are, and find a way. And that she did. Serve well, return those serves, be yourself, focus on your side of the court only, go for those shots, and don't count your chickens till the actual match is over. Hang tough, stay strong. And keep smiling!!

Ana now advances to the Australian Open quarterfinals.

Here is a 9 minute YouTube of the match highlights~

Here are the match stats from the Australian Open website~


Serena Williams
Ana Ivanovic
Double faults
63/95 (66 %)
1st serves in
40/75 (53 %)
43/63 (68 %)
1st serve points won
31/40 (78 %)
13/32 (41 %)
2nd serve points won
21/35 (60 %)
194 KMH
Fastest serve
182 KMH
171 KMH
Average 1st serve speed
162 KMH
145 KMH
Average 2nd serve speed
143 KMH
10/15 (67 %)
Net points won
10/13 (77 %)
2/3 (67 %)
Break points won
4/14 (29 %)
23/75 (31 %)
Receiving points won
39/95 (41 %)
Unforced errors
Total points won

This chart from Australian Open site is quite useful, consider it for your own matches~


Serena Williams
1.  Win more than 70% of points on 1st serve.
2.  Win more than 79% of rallies with 3 or fewer shots when serving.
3.  Have an average 1st serve speed of more than 103.0.
Ana Ivanovic
1.  Win more than 29% of 1st serve return points.
2.  Win more than 29% of rallies with 3 or fewer shots when returning.
3.  Average more than 7.2 points per game returning                                                X 

And Ana's dress? Gorgeous or what? Made by Adidas, this tennis dress moves well, the blue is as azure as the sea, soft feminine front with drop waist, webbing in the back, racer back design, you can get it here~

at Tennis Warehouse the AdiZero  US 90

AND, use sunscreen Down Under, it is summer in the southern hemisphere!

Clarins sets up for a winner~

SPF 40 Day Screen Tint SPF 40 Day Screen Tint
Sheer Perfection. Triple Protection. color: Medium, size: 1.7 fl oz,

UPDATE:  Ana's quarterfinal has ended, she loses in third set to Eugenie Bouchard,  19 years old, from Canada!  5-7, 7-5, 6-2 Bouchard.  Click here for BBC match synopsis. Close set in the second, Ana unfortunately suffers from a back injury, double faults her serve on the last game of the second set to render to Eugenie the road for the third set, one that Ana cannot conclude to her liking.  Thank you, Ana, we look forward to seeing you at the French Open!

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