WTA Dubai Duty Free Championships 2016: Peak Goerges upsets Kuznetsova in first round action

GoergesIn a pre-tournament interview, Julia Goerges remarked that she had “a good feeling” heading into the 2016 Dubai Duty Free Championships… the German player was pretty darn accurate as she produced a wonderful display in the first round to defeat the number eight seed, Svetlana Kuznetsova, 6-0 6-1 in 55 minutes. There have been a couple of “peak” performances this year, two of which came from Kuznetsova herself, up against Monica Puig in the Sydney final and Daniela Hantuchova in the first round of Sydney. This performance from Goerges was well up there with the best of them. The German player came into the match with a 1-4 head-to-head record agaisnt Kuznetsova. Goerges’s only previous win had also come in the first round of Dubai where she went on to reach the final…

The conditions seemed to be perfect for Goerges; while Dubai is a pretty quick court, being at night it was slightly slower which allowed Goerges time to set up her strokes and run around onto her lethal forehand wing. Goerges looked in such control, dictating the majority of rallies, playing inside the baseline and timing the ball beautifully. The power and depth was just too much for Kuznetsova who was a passenger throughout large chunks of this match. There was little the Russian player could do and she didn’t play a bad match.

Kuznetsova had three break points in two of Goerges’s service games in the first set but was unable to take them; Goerges won all the mini-battles and just had one of those days where everything was clicking perfectly. The German player has recently made some big changes within her coaching team. She stopped working with long-term coach, Sascha Nensel towards the end of 2015 and is now working with Michael Geserer and Matthias Mischka. It’s still early days but the change-up at least seems to have worked favourably for Goerges, if only to start afresh and on a clean slate. She reached the final of Auckland in the first week of the year. Goerges will look to build on this performance in the second round when she plays either Barbora Strycova or Tsvetana Pironkova. Producing a display like today is always great but the key will be to back it up…

A heads up to bookmark Sport 360, especially for the next two weeks in Dubai and Doha. Their coverage, especially from Reem Abulleil has been great so far. Also, Women’s Tennis Blog’s resident photographer, Jimmie48 is in Dubai so check out his daily photo round-ups.

7 thoughts on “WTA Dubai Duty Free Championships 2016: Peak Goerges upsets Kuznetsova in first round action

  1. The fast low bouncing court suits big hitters when they are on. Kuznetsova couldn’t even see the balls clearly before it was too late. Sometimes I don’t understand these players and coaches. Should they analyse the court conditions before setting up their game plans?

    Also, I remembered Federer did mention that Dubai temperatures vary from the morning, afternoon and night. Should they string their racquets according to the conditions as well?

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  2. Impressive match from Julia yesterday!! She is really more consistant since the beginning of the season and it pays off! 🙂 I hope she will keep it up, she really deserves a better ranking 🙂

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    • I agree with Tennisandco. Julia’s one of those players who I think should be ranked a lot higher than she is; she’s got a very big serve and a powerful forehand and is mobile on the court, but she seems to struggle in big tournaments for some reason.

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      • With a bit more consistency and without injuries these past few years Julia would probably already be a top 15, maybe even top 10 player. With her new team and new approach I think she can now do this 🙂

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