Sunday, 29 April 2012

Super Sharapova seals Stuttgart crown

Maria Sharapova capped off a tremendous week as she beat an injury affected Victoria Azarenka, 6-1 6-4 in the Stuttgart final.  Azarenka had won their two previous encounters in 2012 in straight sets, but Sharapova turned the tables on the world number one with an excellent display of 31 winners to just 13 unforced errors.  Azarenka looked off-colour during the first set and required treatment for a wrist injury after the first set.  It did seem to affect her play but nothing should be taken away from Sharapova's victory.  The decisive factor behind her title charge this week was some super consistent serving, the best we have seen from her in a long, long time.

There was a definite air of tension between the two players in the final, which was intensified with a bump of shoulders at one changeover.  Azarenka also had a face like thunder during the post-match presentation and it will be interesting to see how bad the wrist injury is.  Overall, it was a disappointing final, but took nothing away from a sensational week in Stuttgart.  There were some excellent individual performances along the way and Roland Garros is shaping up to be a very interesting major for the women.  Next stop for the big guns will be Madrid starting in a week...

The bump of shoulders between Azarenka/Sharapova

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