ROLAND GARROS, Paris
First semifinal was [CR7] Ana Ivanovic (SRB) against [CR13] Lucie Safarova (CZE). Ivanovic got off to a quick start and even served for the set, only to lose it 5-7. This is the time when the mental aspect of the game becomes apparent, the stakes are high and a victory would mean a great deal to both players. Safarova took control of the match, or so it appeared, getting off to an early break in the second. It would not be that easy for Safarova to close out the match. She was serving to get to her first final of a major. There were numerous emotions running through her and she was a bit overwhelmed. She got very tense and could not hold her serve. Would it be the opportunity that Ivanovic needed to get back in the match? Today was Safarova’s day and she broke again, held serve, and won the match 7-5, 7-5.
Next on court Philippe Chatrier was [CR1] Serena Williams (USA) vs. [CR24] Timea Bacsinszky (SUI). At this stage in her career, Williams has nothing to prove; yet, she has everything to gain if she wins another major title. As much as she may down play it, she has been feeling the pressure of the impending possibility of winning her 20th major title. Her game has been erratic and her emotional/physical state has been questionable. She struggled in three out of her five matches played and struggled again today. Bacsinszky won the first set and Williams, “not feeling well”, won the second. That was enough to take the fight out of Bacsinszky. Williams won 4-6, 6-3, 6-0 and gets a chance to win her 20th major title and keeps hope alive to win a Grand Slam.
Will it be a 20th for Williams or a 1st for Safarova? The odds are in favor of Safarova as Williams stumbled off the court looking very exhausted/ill.