Last night we were treated to an all out battle of WTA titans when former top lady ballers Venus Williams and Victoria Azarenka faced off in the Stanford second round. There was much anticipation for this match up and it didn't disappoint. They both hit stinging groundies and created acute angles as they ran each other to all parts of the court.
The pair had played three times before this match with the American winning all in straights sets. During the match, you could see why. Vika's favorite pattern is to go cross court with her backhand to open up her opponent's forehand side for her down-the-line shot. But Venus' backhand is also her favorite and she holds her own, and then some, against the Belarusians' play. In fact, Venus' all-around game, when at her best, is superior to Vika's. And last night it was again. Since Wimbledon her game has been on point. Vintage, I dare say.
It was Vika's 25th birthday yesterday and, unfortunately, she was hit with another loss to Venus, this time 6-4, 7-6 (1), and a fall out of the top 10 to number 11 in the WTA rankings (switch places with Ana Ivanovic). It's not a surprise since she has tons of ranking points to defend after her great summer last season. She's still shaking off the rust from her injury layoff and should be back to full form soon.
There was plenty of grumbling on Twitter about this kit. Some liked it while others just hated on it (try "horrid" and "terrible"). Personally, I liked the look for her. It's bold and she prefers to be a little out of the box (think: RedFoo). It certainly doesn't resemble anything else out there right now and that's a good thing. When Nike tries to put her in uber-feminine looks, it never works. Vika has the body type and attitude to pull this look off. One thing: She did seem to be fiddling with the top a little bit which could mean a fit issue or something. Otherwise, it's a winner for me.
[Photo(s) credit: Getty Images]