Today I played the quarters of the singles against a South African player, Elna Botha. She was an all court player but not accustomed to red clay as they have none in So Africa. She lives in Johannesburg which is about 6000 feet above sea level, but played on the So African team last week so had a week to get used to conditions. I warmed up early with Vicki and then Susan and played at 11 and won 61 61. The courts were drier today and are getting harder each day with all the rolling the courts are getting each morning combined with all day play. Elna slipped and fell two or three times but didn’t hurt herself.
In doubles we played the Brazilian #2 seeds, Doris Mattar and Lucia Rusu. They played a typical South American style, one up, one back, hard ground strokes and one player at the net making frequent poaches from very close to the net. Pat and I played well and won 61 61. I set up Pat and she was dynamic at the net. Brenda Moore (Mike Tammen’s spouse) dropped by and took the action photos below.
After tennis I biked over to the little shopping arcade near Ali Bey and joined Susan and Tina there to look at necklaces. Susan found a shopkeeper who would make necklaces to order out of beads and crystals. My bike always attracts a lot of attention too!
Other Americans had mixed results. Mike Tammen lost his singles in three sets to Behar, the #4 seed but Danny Waldman won again to reach the semis. Tammen and Waldman won their doubles though, easily, in the 55s. Ross Persons and also Mark Vines/Wes Cash also advanced in 55 men’s doubles. Ken White and Bill Moss won in 50 men’s doubles and Mary Dailey won in 45 doubles with a French player. Fran Chandler lost in singles to Ingrid from Austria, the #1 seed. Shelly Works won her consolation match and so did Max King. Mixed is going on now, Ken White is playing with Mary D and Patricia Zerdan is playing with Max. Carolina Blouin is playing mixed too with Ross Duncan. Scott Works, playing with a pickup partner who is German is in the doubles semis.
Update: Dailey/White and Blouin/Duncan are into the 50 and 35 mxd semis respectively. Carolina and Ross beat the #1 seeds! Max and Patricia lost to the #2 seeds.
In the 55s, Diane beat Betty Michel of France 60 64 and Tina won 5-0 retired (she’s lost only 2 games in 3 matches…but plays Diane tomorrow). Susan unfortunately met Ros Balodis, a 6 time world champion a round too early and lost in just under three hours 64 in the third. She said she had many ad points she was unable to convert, but it was a very good showing by Susan on red clay. I play Ros next, who must be sick of playing Americans by now, she has played Pat, Susan now me this week! She also played Diane last week.
In all doubles and mixed here they are playing a 10 point match TB in lieu of a third set. A lot of players are unhappy about that situation, especially for doubles and a petition to change that is going around. For the semis and finals I think a full third set would be nice.
One funny think happened yesterday. After our doubes one of the Turkish court workers asked me where my husband was. I thought it was sort of an odd question till he explained…the one I was practicing with at the beach courts every morning…Jack Barker. Diane and I had a good laugh and I said I should have told him he was with his other wife.
Here’s the ITF article for the day: http://www.itftennis.com/seniors/news/articles/balodis-battles-into-semifinals.aspx
Wonderful successes for the US players and loved the photos of you with the backhand, stiff wrist, on balance and all that good “stuff” Again, thanks for the comments on our gals and guys. Wonderful Easter present to hear from you. So, I’ll be munching on chocolate and awaiting more news from you. love rita