Team Ivanovic-Kardon begins with a win


Originally published on: 26/02/10 11:27

Former world No.1 Ana Ivanovic and new coach Craig Kardon got their new relationship off to a winning start when the Serb fought her way past powerful Russian Alisa Kleybanova in Dubai on Monday.

Ivanovic put her third round Aussie Open defeat to the 19-year-old world No.27 behind her to pull off a 7-5, 6-4 victory. The result puts Ivanovic into the third round of the Barclays Dubai Championships.

‘Having spent a couple of practices it has been going really well’ – Ivanovic

The victory marks a successful start to Ivanovics relationship with new coach, American Craig Kardon, who has guided the likes of Martina Navratilova, Jennifer Capriati and Lindsay Davenport in the past. The duo began working together when the 21-year-old Serb arrived in the UAE.

“I’m very happy with my game overall. I’ve been very aggressive and serving very well,” said Ivanovic, who takes on either Pole Urszula Radwanska or French lucky loser Camille Pin in the last 16. “I just feel confident going on the court and I’ll build on this.”

Twenty-four hours before her second round match at the Aviation Club, Ivanovic had told reporters that the first few sessions with Kardon had gone smoothly.

“We are getting to know each other but having spent a couple of practices it has been going really well,” said Ivanovic, who has slipped from No.1 to her current listing of No.8 in the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour singles world rankings since winning the French Open last June.

“We have a firm view of how my game should develop and which direction my game is going to go. I feel very confident it’s going to be good.

Meanwhile, the big shock on day two in Dubai was the exit of seventh seed Svetlana Kuznetsova, who went down 6-4, 3-6, 6-0 to fellow Russian Elena Vesnina.

The event’s ninth seed, Poland’s Agnieszka Radwanska, was also sent packing when she lost to her sister Urszula, a qualifier, 6-4, 6-3.

Eleventh seeded Frenchwoman Marion Bartoli almost joined them on the sidelines but survived three match points to come through 6-0, 4-6, 7-6(6) against Japan’s Ai Sugiyama.

There was no such luck for 15th seed Anna Chakvetadze, however, who crashed out 7-5, 6-2 to Japans Ayumi Morita, the player who replaced Israels Shahar Peer in the main draw after the Israeli was refused an entry visa by UAE authorities.

The Williams sisters, Jelena Jankovic and second seed Dinara Safina are all in action on Tuesday.


Tim Farthing, Tennishead Editorial Director & Owner, has been a huge tennis fan his whole life. He's a tennis journalist and entrepreneur as well as playing tennis to a national standard. He also helps manage his local club and volunteers for his local tennis organisation. He's a specialist in content about the administration of professional tennis and tennis coaching for all levels.