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Court choices confuse Kuznetsova

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Originally published on: 26/02/10 12:36

Kuznetsova won the French Open earlier this month, her second grand slam title, and is seeded fifth at Wimbledon to reflect her world ranking. But the Russian ended up playing her first-round match on Court 14 and her second round on Court Three, while lower-ranked, but arguably more glamorous players such as Caroline Wozniacki and Maria Kirilenko, were on Centre Court.

Fellow Russian and world number one Dinara Safina was also relegated to Court Two on Thursday and, speaking after her 6-1 6-3 win over Pauline Parmentier on Thursday, Kuznetsova said: “It’s fine to put me wherever they want to, they don’t have to put me on Centre Court.”

She added: “But with the schedule, this is the weird thing. If you look at the schedule, it’s not about only me. Dinara plays on Court Two, Venus (Williams) plays on Court One and girls who are not very high seeds play Centre.

“I respect them, they’re great players for sure, but this is what’s weird for me. But in Wimbledon you have to expect anything! That’s why it’s special for everybody. That’s why I like it, because it’s unpredictable.”

Kuznetsova’s first-round match was due to be fourth on Court Two on Tuesday, but another men’s match held over from Monday was also put before hers and she was shifted to Court 14 at short notice.

“They put me fourth, after two men’s matches and one women’s, and then added one more men’s match which was at one set all and went to five sets,” she added.

“My coach went to ask if they moved me and they said no. And then somebody comes in the locker room and told me ‘You go on Court 14’. I hadn’t been asked if I wanted to go but I appreciated them putting me anywhere because I was happy to finish that day.”

Defending champion Venus Williams also enjoyed an easy win today, the five-time winner needing just an hour and nine minutes to beat Kateryna Bondarenko 6-3 6-2.

It was the 29-year-old’s 16th successive singles victory at the All England Club as she seeks a third straight title, and she said: “That’s a great stat for me, a great achievement and I want to make it more. Everything was working for me.”

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