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Ana has slipped two places to No.17 in the latest Sony Ericsson WTA Tour rankings, which are published today. In the Race to the Championships she is 14th and her doubles ranking is 88.
Ana was hoping to play doubles this week at the Bausch & Lomb Championships with Alicia Molik, but the rankings cut-off was too high for the pair to gain automatic entry. Unfortunately both wildcards, including the one reserved for Gold Exempt players, had already been allocated, which meant that Ana and Molik had no way of entering.
On her first ever fishing trip Ana broke the Florida state record for the heaviest weakfish ever caught. The 19-year-old yesterday landed a “Cynoscion regalis” that weighed a whopping 10lbs. 3oz.
“This is unbelievable,” said Ana, visibly shocked. “I had never even been fishing before and now I break this record! It must have been beginner’s luck. It’s hard to believe this could happen.”
The sea excursion was part of a promotional appearance Ana was making ahead of the Bausch & Lomb Championships in Amelia Island, which begin tomorrow.
Ana has been drawn to face either China’s Shuai Peng or Czech Eva Birnerova in her opening match at the Bausch & Lomb Championships, which begin in Amelia Island on Monday. Ana is seeded sixth and receives a first round bye.
Peng will be favourite to overcome Birnerova, who pulled out of last week’s Sony Ericsson Open with a neck injury. Ana has met the Chinese player once before, winning 6-2, 6-4 in Sydney last year.
Sven: Hi Ana! I was just wondering if you liked the Proximus Diamond Games in Antwerp, Belgium and the atmosphere during the tournament? And if so, if you will be coming back next year? Greetz Sven (Antwerp, Belgium)
Ana: I haven’t decided my schedule for next year but I am sure I will play there again in the future. The crowd were very loud, they were cheering for Kim so much, but they were fair, they did not shout when I was serving or anything like this. It was a great atmosphere.
Fred: How heavy is your racket? Do you add weight?
The Sony Ericsson WTA Tour yesterday announced “landmark” changes to the sport of women’s tennis. The reforms, which were approved by the Tour Board in Miami, will come into effect in 2009 and represent arguably the biggest alterations since the WTA was formed in 1970.
Aimed at increasing fan enjoyment and ensuring that the top players compete against each other more often, and without injury, the reforms include:
Shortened season: the Tour Championships will end in October, thereby creating an off-season of at least nine weeks
Ana and Maria Kirilenko lost 7-6, 4-6, 12-10 to Emilie Loit and Nicole Pratt in the first round of the doubles event at the Sony Ericsson Open.
Playing their first match together since last year's US Open – Ana has not played doubles of any kind since then – the youngsters produced a stirring comeback from a set and 4-1 behind. They won five games on the bounce to force a Super tiebreak.
They trailed throughout the decider but came within two points of victory, only for the more experienced French-Australian pairing to win through.
Ana is in doubles action today alongside Maria Kirilenko. Playing their first match together since last year's US Open, they face the French-Australian pairing of Emilie Loit and Nicole Pratt.
The match is scheduled to begin sometime after 5pm local time (10pm Central European Time). The court has not yet been decided. Click here for live point-by-point scoring
Photo: Stephanie Morel
A career-best performance by Yaroslava Shvedova knocked Ana out of the Sony Ericsson Open in the second round. The Russian was excellent throughout and triumphed 7-5, 6-4 in an hour and 23 minutes.