Google Down the Line!: PHOTO OP: Surprise!

Friday, October 1, 2010

PHOTO OP: Surprise!

"Somebody pinch(ed) me."

Former World No. 3 Elena Dementieva, who now sits at No. 10 in the WTA rankings, seemed to shock even herself after reaching her first final since Kuala Lumpur back in February defeating Roland Garros champ Francesca Schiavone 6-4, 7-5. She'll face off against Caroline Wozniacki, who gave up a 5-0 lead in the decider before finally closing out Victoria Azarenka 6-2, 6-7(3), 6-4, for the title.

Elena has become such a sympathetic figure on the tour particularly after her heartbreak in Paris earlier this year. But even before that moment, the well-read Russian always came across as someone who worked extremely hard at her game (was there any other way to fix that serve?) but never got the big pay off she deserved. And her fans. The ones who, even though she's ballin' big and torching her draw, live with the dreaded feeling that something will go terribly awry. And they're usually right.

Let's be honest, though. The 28-year old has had her chances including two major final appearances. Will she get another opportunity to enter the tennis history books? It's hard to say. Elena will need a few things to fall in her favor during the two weeks of a Slam for her to make that breakthrough. There are some who have completely written the Russian righty off, though, and point to this year's Roland Garros as the last, best chance she had at winning that maiden major. But I have only one thing to say to those doubters: SCHIAVO.

[Photo: AP]

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