Kerber struggles again, out of Australian Open

first_imgMELBOURNE, Australia (AP):Angelique Kerber said before the Australian Open that she wasn’t putting too much pressure on herself as the top-seeded player at a Grand Slam tournament for the first time.Clearly, she is still getting used to being No. 1.The German player ended Serena Williams’ reign atop the rankings after picking up her second Grand Slam trophy last fall at the U.S. Open following her breakout win at last year’s Australian Open. Since then, however, her results have been pedestrian seven tournaments, no titles and a 5-7 record against top-50 players.Her title defense in Melbourne also ended prematurely in a 6-2, 6-3 loss to American Coco Vandeweghe in the fourth round yesterday.”I was not feeling the ball at all tonight,” she said. “I was not playing good from the first point.”Kerber hasn’t looked at all comfortable since the year began. She lost early in her two tune-up events for the Australian Open and struggled to find her rhythm in Melbourne once the tournament began, dropping sets in each of her first two matches.OVERPOWEREDAgainst Vandeweghe, the usually aggressive Kerber was simply overpowered, hitting just seven winners to 30 for her opponent. She was up a break in the second set and looked to be regaining control of the match, but Vandeweghe came charging back with pinpoint forehand winners that Kerber just watched go by.Vandeweghe, a former Wimbledon quarter-finalist, often lacks consistency and can let her emotions and temper get the better of her, but she looked composed in the match and far looser with her groundstrokes than Kerber.After serving it out, there was no celebration from the American – she merely shrugged her shoulders.After ending 2016 on a four-match losing streak, Vandeweghe started the season with a new mindset – she wanted to project more confidence on the court and play more freely. She set a goal of making the quarter-finals at the year’s first Grand Slam – and she’s done just that.”Going out there and playing an opponent, any opponent, I go out there expecting to win,” she said. “It’s just another person that’s in front of me, whoever it may be, if it’s No. 1 in the world, No. 130 in the world, it doesn’t matter, it’s still an opponent to get in my way of achieving my goals.”Kerber, meanwhile, will have to find her confidence again. She could lose her No. 1 ranking if Williams wins the tournament, which may help relieve some of the pressure she’s felt as the favourite.”It’s just the beginning of the year,” she said. “I can still improve my tennis, which is good.”last_img read more

Ateneo holds off NU to keep perfect slate

first_imgOSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ‘a duplicitous move’ – Lacson View comments Coco’s house rules on ‘Probinsyano’ set Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netAteneo kept its immaculate card in the UAAP Season 80 men’s basketball tournament after turning back a strong stand from National U, 85-72, Wednesday at Mall of Asia Arena.The Blue Eagles hiked their unbeaten run 9-0 while the Bulldogs slid 3-6 and stay unmoved at sixth place.ADVERTISEMENT “We hit 34 percent from three-point range so I think we did a good job of not getting rattled by their defense.”Thirdy Ravena led the Blue Eagles with 15 points, eight boards, and two steals while Jolo Mendoza and Matt Nieto added 10 points apiece.J-Jay Alejandro put up a game-high 22 points to go along seven rebounds, five assists, and three steals to lead NU while Issa Gaye had eight points and 14 boards.ADVERTISEMENT Judy Ann’s 1st project for 2020 is giving her a ‘stomachache’ It’s too early to present Duterte’s ‘legacy’ – Lacson Jake says relationship with Shaina ‘goes beyond physical attraction’ Kiss-and-tell matinee idol’s conquests: True stories or tall tales? For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity. Court allows Ricafort to continue playing for UPcenter_img Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next After taking a slim two-point lead at the end of the third, 67-65, the Blue Eagles ramped it up in the fourth going on a 15-5 run with Matt Nieto capping it off with a booming triple 2:22 left that gave Ateneo an 82-70 lead.Ateneo assistant coach Sandy Arespacochaga said it was NU’s zone defense that forced them to create shots from distance, and it was a challenge they had to respond to.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSRedemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie ThompsonSPORTSMayweather beats Pacquiao, Canelo for ‘Fighter of the Decade’SPORTSFederer blasts lack of communication on Australian Open smog“NU played hard, they came up with a game plan, they switched defenses on us and they zoned us a lot,” said Arespacochaga. “We kind of expected and it was just a matter of telling our players to just read the defense.”Ateneo used a strong three-point shooting to slowly distance itself from the Bulldogs with the Blue Eagles converting 11 of their 32 attempts from deep while holding NU to just three three-pointers. MOST READ Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Jo Koy: My brain always wants to think funny Margot Robbie talks about filming ‘Bombshell’s’ disturbing sexual harassment scene LATEST STORIES Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Jake says relationship with Shaina ‘goes beyond physical attraction’last_img read more