Sunday, March 25, 2007

Sharapova vs. Williams - Again!

by Mad Professah

At the Sony Ericsson Open on Key Biscayne, Florida on Saturday, Maria Sharapova won her second round match against Yung-Jan Chan 6-3 6-2, setting up a third round clash with unseeded Venus Williams who dispatched Sharapova's best friend on the women's tour, No. 29 seed Maria Kirilenko, 6-3 6-3. Venus has won this tournament 3-times before (back when it was called the NASDAQ-100 Open) but lost to Sharapova at this same event two years ago in the semifinals, although the American beat the top Russian the last time they played (Wimbledon semifinals of 2005, one of the best women's matches of that year) for the first time in 3 career head-to-head meetings.

After her demolition by Venus' sister Serena Williams in the 2007 Australian Open final a little over 2 months ago, I'm sure Maria will treat this as more than your average third round match. Especially, if she does win, and Serena wins her third round match against Lucia Safarova, Sharapova would have to play Serena in the fourth round!

Barring a return of inclement weather, Sharapova should play Venus Williams late in the day on Sunday. Hopefully the Tennis Channel will see fit to interrupt a men's match and broadcast it live!


Craig Hickman said...

The Tennis Channel has NO rights to broadcast WTA matches at this event. TTC is broadcasting ATP Masters Series TV, which is why there are no WTA matches. It's not that the WTA matches are unworthy but because the WTA has no corresponding Masters Series events.

Venus/Maria will not be on TTC. If anything, ESPN would have to decide to air the match, but with college basketball on air, I sincerely doubt it.

MadProfessah said...

Umm, Craig, TTC is broadcasting Venus versus Sharapova right now. And they are also announcing that they will show women's matches on Monday.

Craig Hickman said...

Then I stand corrected. Still, I don't think they have the rights to broadcast the matches live.

Today, they showed Justine/Vera after live ATP coverage.

Serena got the short end of the stick.