Ana to face Stosur in Round Two

Ana to face Stosur in Round Two

Samantha Stosur, a 21-year-old Australian, stands between Ana and a place in the third round of the Australian Open. Ana has never played Stosur before but is wary of the threat she will pose tomorrow.

“She’s a great player,” said Ana. “She’s doing very well in Australia. She’s on a home court and it will be a very hard match.

“She has a very good serve, she comes to the net a lot. I just want to improve my game. I want to serve better and move better and put her under pressure.”

12 months ago Stosur reached back-to-back finals in the Gold Coast and Sydney and six weeks later saw her ranking rise to a career-high no.44. She lost in the first round of this year’s Sydney event and consequently has fallen to no.98.

However, any suggestion that she is not capable of mixing it with the best would be absurd. She has upset no fewer than seven seeds in Sony Ericsson WTA Tour events over the past two years and, in front of her home fans, will be hell-bent on bringing a premature end to Ana’s Australian Open.

“I saw her play a little bit at the Hopman Cup,” said Stosur about Ana. “I kind of know what she’s about. I’m just looking forward to it.”

There’s a very good chance that the match will be on one of the main show courts – either Rod Laver or Vodafone Arena, possibly at night. “Hopefully I get to get out there,” said Stosur when asked about the possibility of playing in Rod Laver Arena. “That’s what everyone wants to do at a Grand Slam, is play on centre court. If I get that opportunity, I’ll certainly enjoy it out there.”

Melbourne’s Serbian community would also enjoy the chance to exercise their vocal cords in one of the sport’s biggest venues. Their aggressive but controlled chanting during Ana’s third round match against Amelie Mauresmo there last year was a most uncommon occurrence in a sport as traditionally genteel as tennis. “I enjoy that,” Ana said about the support.

“It’s always nice to have someone from your country who is supporting you. It makes me happy.”

By Gavin Versi