Which ladies will star at Tennis Paradise?

Expect the unexpected at Indian Wells. Often described as the 5th Grand Slam this is always an opportunity to go big. 2018 celebrates 10 years since this tournament became a Premier Mandatory on the WTA tour and in the previous 9 tournaments there has only been one multiple champion that being Victoria Azarenka and oh yeah, she’ll be there!

The pressure is there for the top ranked players on the tour and it’s an equal pressure to do well and all will have an eye on the draw especially with Serena and Vika back in the mix.

Serena has arrived!

Serena has been on site for a few days. The 22 time Grand Slam champion who won Indian Wells in 2001 for the first and only time has been practicing as she posted on snapchat. Serena only returned a few years ago to Indian Wells along with sister Venus after the racist abuse they both suffered in 2001.

The crowds are going to flood in for the appearance of Serena back on a competitive tennis court and the support I imagine will be like something we have never seen before

Vika can play!

Part of the rules under the custody battle Victoria Azarenka has been in says she can’t leave California with her son Leo. However Indian Wells is in California so all noise suggests participation is likely. She won Indian Wells back in 2016 and I am surprised she has not opted to play the Indian Wells 125k event this week just to build up match fitness.

va sw

Battle for No.1

Two former champions. Wozniacki in 2011 and Halep in 2014 will battle for world number one once again but if you ask both I’m sure they’d rather take the title here in Indian Wells. Both have been playing some good tennis this season and I’d expect them to continue this here. Halep is back at world number one and with the way she has been playing with the intensity on court I’d say pressure is on her!

Eli and Garbine

Elina Svitolina and Garbine Muguruza are two to watch here. The heat could be an issue for them but watching Elina in Dubai I was really impressed with the way she composed herself on court on route to another title this year. I do feel that if both want to succeed her in Indian Wells they might need to be a bit more pro-active and on the front foot earlier.

Sharapova’s chances

Tennis moves on. I said this after her defeat to Kerber in Melbourne. Kerber was brutal and Sharapova was answerless. I question why there hasn’t been any changes to her game when she was banned as the game adapts and I don’t see her a contender here. I recently watched her play Monica Niculescu and I remember writing that it got unnecessarily messy very quickly and despite being a two time champion I can’t see her adding to her trophy cabinet here.



Passion, Determination, Fight and Raw Emotion – The brilliant Caroline Wozniacki!

The tears say it all. How she has fought and she has sacrificed for this moment. She never gave up and she deserves massive credit.

First WTA title at the age of 17, first major final at the age of 18 and world number one for 67 weeks when she was 19! Success like this early on in a career can be good but history does sometimes show hitting those heights again can be tough.

This journey has been tough. She struggled with form, got injured, the pressure became too much and fell out of the top 10! She was ranked 72 in the world just over 12 months ago now she is world number one and a Grand Slam champion, letโ€™s not forget this lady won the WTA Finals in Singapore a couple of months ago as well! RESPECT!

We can only imagine what that wait is like, sheโ€™s lived it and she fought for it and thatโ€™s a lesson to us all and to kids in everyday life is never give up! Sheโ€™s been written off winning one of these but I could not be happier she has done it, I havenโ€™t felt this emotional over a Grand Slam final for a long time!

What I love about Wozniacki is the fight. She is a winner and I hate the definition of a successful career by counting the Grand Slam titles there is so much more to it.

Watch this lady play tennis at times itโ€™s like watching a 40 piece orchestra. She draws a crowd all over the world, they come to watch Caroline Wozniacki and 99.9% of the time you watch her defend that baseline like her life depends on it and you watch in dis-belief and say to yourself โ€˜too goodโ€™. She doesnโ€™t give it whether itโ€™s a point, a game, a match, a title or a dream she make you work for it and she has worked so hard for this!

New York four years ago was one of the most memorable matches in tennis history for me. Watching the brilliance of this lady in a rally was like watching an orchestra and the brilliance as she executed one of the most beautiful points in US Open was outstanding and here it isโ€ฆ





It still give me goose bumps now!

What she did in Singapore was out of this world to win the title and her performances since is a celebration of her brilliance and determination.

The passion is raw and real and is what this sport is all about!






A long wait but worth the wait! Caroline Wozniacki is a Grand Slam champion!

Finals don’t get bigger than this. Two ladies and a first Grand Slam on the line and of course world number one title but who would claim their first major at their third attempt?

The Dane started the match in complete control. One of the highlights of her game this week has been her aggression and improvement off the forehandย  was visible going after the Romanian’s serve and got the reward with an early break.

The nerves settled after for Halep who then played her next two service games without dropping a point really crushing the forehand and taking the ball early but still trailing 2-4.

One commentator describe Wozniacki as dialled in and well wasn’t she just?! She continued to flatten out the forehand and backhand so well and played an incredible point to go on to sealing a 5-2 lead but first signs of frustration from Halep who at 0-15 on the Wozniacki serve hit the second serve return straight into the net! 5-2.

Halep did her bit in the next game for 3-5 and over to Caro serving for the set. It got messy for the Dane falling 0-40 down on serve! A well constructed point and an ace got her to 30-40 but Halep forced the error and it was quickly back on serve 4-5… where next?!

Well, a love hold followed for Halep! 5-5…

The unpredictability of this match as another love hold this time for Wozniacki who to her credit re-grouped very quickly to edge ahead of 6-5 asking the question of Simona Halep once more.

Halep answered some tough questions from the Dane but held out for 6-6 taking the set to a tie-break!

Frustration for Halep immediately with Caro taking a 2-0 lead the first time we’ve seen aggression in quite some time from her! Another poor second serve return from Halep long gifting Wozniacki the point going up 3-1 and quickly 4-1!

Hustle from the Dane! The depth, the precision and a 5-2 lead for Wozniacki! Two points from the first set!

A solid serve set up four set points for the former world number one who took her first Grand Slam final set 7-6 (7-2)!

No first set hangover for Halep who needed a quick hold which she got and at 1-1, where would this one go now?

Well the tennis from these two ladies was exceptional and we saw the extent of that in the third game which went on and on finishing the Halep saving a massive four set points to lead 2-1, how big could that prove to be?

Slight distraction for the Dane up 40-0 failing to find her first serve at this point but at 40-30 another second serve Halep pounced on but sent long for the third time!

Concerns for Halep who despite holding for 3-2 had to call on the physio with the doctor and physio coming out on court taking her blood pressure with it being informed prior to this if a it were to go to a third set the heat rule would be implemented giving the players a 10 minute break.

The heat and humidity seemed to be taking it’s toll on Halep and once played resumed Wozniacki levelled up for 3-3. How much does Simona Halep have in the tank?

Wow what a turn around! Break points came and Halep took them to lead 5-3! Who saw this coming? The Romanian look’s like she can’t walk!

Well, break points came and gone and then on set point on an open court Halep sent iong but converted on the third attempt to take the set 6-3!

One set shootout…

Following the break the nerves took over and these ladies unsperable on court with Wozniacki leading 3-1 like in set one but pegged back again!

Another break of serve! Halep leading 4-3 with a fist-pump! Could she do it?!

Another twist as Wozniacki breaks back! 4-4. 8 games, 6 breaks! Where next??!

The nerves! 40-15 and Caro double faults… and a backhand into the net from Halep means Wozniacki is a game away from the title!

How are your nerves ladies?

Forehand into the net first point Wozniacki… 0-15

Forehand cross court, 15-15…

30-15, overrule…

Double fault 30-30 (Halep’s first)




The fight, the hard work, the determination, the knock backs, she has been through it all in her 811 career matches so far and she proves never give it up and keep up the hard work!









Wozniacki v Halep – World No.1 and a 1st Grand Slam on the line!

Almost two weeks ago 128 began now it is fitting that the final is between our world number one and world number two Simona Halep and Caroline Wozniacki.

For both it is a case of third time lucky. Nearly has never been enough for both of them having made two finals in their respective careers but have never won a Grand Slam and now one will and it is very unfortunate one won’t.

This year’s tournament has been all about belief and fight and in a time without some top names on the tour these ladies have proved time and time again what champions they are. I said it is unfortunate one won’t win but both have proven themselves as winners this fortnight in Melbourne saving match points to get to this stage.

Simona Halep has been magnificent. I have never seen a tournament where she has played better! Some times it is easy to get carried away with performances but she has been out of this world. Her whole game, movement and something that has been spoken about a lot this season is her mentality which has improved massively and we can look back two years and matches she won she would have lost and that is a massive improvement! Amazing as well that Simona hasn’t lost a match this year!

Caroline Wozniacki has also had an epic couple of weeks saving match points as well in an earlier. She has continued this momentum from her Singapore win last year and I’m so pleased to see her playing consistently well! Her game is very solid right now and it’s been a pleasure to watch her take control confidently but also not too confident where it can leak errors.

I can’t call this one at all. I want both to win but I am so looking forward to this match! If I had to chose then I’d chose Wozniacki to win it, it would be a big day for her and for tennis!



Australian Open Day 9 – Nadal, Svitolina & Dimitrov out! Wozniacki through!

The conclusion of the Australian edges closer day by day but for some players it has come to a surprising end with Grigor Dimitrov, Rafael Nadal and Elina Svitolina’s tournaments all coming to an end on the same day!

Edmund stuns Dimitrov!

Well, a first Grand Slam semi-final for Edmund who got it right from the first game of the match. He went after Dimitrov and forced him out of his comfort zone and bided his time to see of the world number three! See more on the win below!

Stunned! Edmund see’s off Dimitrov to make first Grand Slam semi-final!

Mertens strikes again!

Elise Mertens is causing trouble on the tour. The Belgian is racing through the draw at the moment and after seeing off Elina Svitolina who had been so impressive throughout the tournament now hangs questions on Caroline Wozniacki who is looking to make her first final in Melbourne.

Nadal injured and out!

In what was a bit of a rollercoaster with Marin Cilic during the latter stages of the match Nadal felt some pain and after receiving treatment decided to retire from the match ending his tournament. Since the retirement Nadal has said he will have an MRI tomorrow to find out what the issue is.

Caro safely through!

In a day of upsets Caroline Wozniacki orchestrated herself through a tricky opponent in Carla Suarez Navarro. The Dane cruised taking the first set 6-0 before losing the second on the tie-break but as ever showed some fight to make her first semi-final in 7 years!

caro 1



Australian Open Day 5 – Jo and Nick put on a show! Business as usual for Svitolina and Wozniacki!

We are nearly half way through the Australian Open. Today saw the hottest day of the championships reaching 42 degrees on court which is mad but it didn’t stop the usual suspects from doing their thing.

Svitolina and Wozniacki progress untroubled!

Elina Svitolina played in the heat of the day but it didn’t seem to bother her at all. The Ukranian saw off her fellow countrywoman 6-2 6-2 in around an hour to book her place in the fourth round and is on course to make the semi-finals without having to play a seeded player.

Caroline Wozniacki was the last lady on court today in Melbourne which means when she made it onto court it was only about 20 degrees. However the Dane was ready and from the get go Wozniacki just took control and it was a joy to watch her play like that.

Hat’s off gents!

Once this tournament is all over we will look back at the matches of the tournament and not much will top Jo v Nick. These two left it all out on court and even though it was a very intense four set match they had fun and shared a lovely embrace at the net after.

Before the match Nick was saying how he looked up to Tsonga when he was a kid and followed his practices and matches during Jo’s run to the final in Melbourne in 2008.

The performance from both was exceptional but I felt it was a statement from Nick which said I’m here to win, he has fun and gets frustrated but his tennis today was exceptional!




Australian Open Day 3 – survival key as Grigor and Caro sneak through to day 5!

Day 1 and 2 are over and now on Day 3 the openers in Melbourne return on a day by day basis where only half survive and for some it was close.

Caroline Wozniacki and Grigor Dimitrov both heavily tipped to go far in the tournament here in Melbourne had to do it the hard way earlier than they would have liked but a win is a win and at a major sometimes winning without the style is what makes a champion.

These last 12 months have been massive for Grigor Dimitrov, he stole the start of last season but has been a little stop start this year and after dropping the fourth set to McDonald 0-6 you feared the worst but he’s built that champion mentality and to win 8-6 in the decider shows his steel and that he has a lot more to offer in Melbourne!

Caroline Wozniacki ranked at the two in the world deserves some credit for her improvement and i think she does get taken for granted on the tour but I think deserves some recognition for what she has achieved and to save two match points and to think 16 months ago was ranked outside the worlds top 70 but she has showed great grit and as she described a proud win!


Another five set battle took place as well as former finalist Jo-Wilfried Tsonga saw off Denis Shapovalov to set up a meeting with Nick Kyrgios.