Thursday was not a good day to be world no. 1.
Hours after Roger Federer was served out of Cincinnati by Ivo Karlovic, Ana Ivanovic was knocked out of Montreal. The Serb was defeated by big-hitting Austrian Tamira Paszek 2-6, 6-1, 2-6 in the third round, giving compatriot Jelena Jankovic a great chance to steal the top ranking by reaching the final.
According to Ana, the right thumb injury she sustained in practice almost two weeks ago hindered her performance last night:
It was very frustrating in the first set. I was really down by [the injury], really felt like I couldn't do anything. And then in the break after the first set, I thought to myself, 'you know what, you still can serve and play your backhand, so just imagine you have a terrible forehand and try to put ball in as you can, try to look for your backhand.'Ana hasn't made any impression on the Tour since winning the French Open and becoming the top lady baller. It's almost as if she's a place holder, keeping the penthouse warm until the real no. 1 comes along. But, I'd chalk this up to a learning experience: learning how to deal with being the hunted and not the huntee.
It worked well for a while. But I guess it wasn't too hard to figure out what she had to do. In the third set, she started playing much more to my forehand. It was just so frustrating that I couldn't control the racket in my hand. I couldn't feel anything. It was very frustrating. I tried to fight as much as I could.
I really wanted to win this match. But obviously she's a very good player and she figured it out...I give her credit for taking her chances and winning this match.
Talented ballers will always look to play their 'A' game when facing the world no. 1 - something Ana has learned the hard way.
(image via Getty)