Myskina masters Ana

Myskina masters Ana

Tenth seed Anastasia Myskina produced a brilliant performance to end Ana’s French Open dream. The 2004 Roland Garros champion triumphed 6-2, 6-3 in a hugely impressive display of reactionary tennis.

“She played a very good match,” said Ana. “She didn’t give me much chance. She was hitting the ball all over the court. I tried to put her under pressure and get into the court and change the rhythm, but everything I tried to do, she had the answer. She was just playing better today.”

By her own admission, it was a nervous start by Ana. Though she won the opening two points of the match, she hit three successive unforced errors and was immediately broken. Myskina was playing within herself, keeping the ball in court for long enough to draw mistakes from the 18-year-old.

It wasn’t until she was down a double-break at 1-4 that Ana began to show her capabilities. She hit a flurry of crushing forehands but, to her frustration, shots that would go for winners against most players were returned thanks to Myskina’s excellent retrieval skills.

Ana said: “She was running very well. Some shots I was very surprised how she got them back, and so deep. So I had to start the point all over again. She just played great tennis today.”

Though she missed two break points, Ana was more into the match at the end of the first set, and the nerves appeared to have gone away. However, Myskina remained firmly on top, brilliantly counter-punching and, like a jujitsu fighter, using Ana’s power against her. “She’s very good at that,” said Ana.

“But also, when I tried to change the rhythm and play some high balls and slice, she would hit winners from the middle of the court.”

The Russian broke Ana in the opening game of the second set. Serve matched serve for the next seven games, though Ana created opportunities for herself as Myskina served at 2-3. “I had a little bit of a chance but I had a couple of mis-hits, which was a little bit unlucky,” Ana said.

The Serbian was unable to capitalise and, as she served to stay in the match, the Russian broke Ana once more to seal a 64-minute victory.

Ana said: “Of course I’m a little bit disappointed, but I tried to do everything. Today it was not enough.”

By Gavin Versi

Click here for an audio clip of Ana talking about the match.

Click here for game-by-game text commentary of the match.