Saturday, 21 June 2008

Spotlight On ... Carla Suarez Navarro

How many of us had heard of Carla Suarez Navarro before Roland Garros began? The Spaniard was ranked 132 in the world, but her dream run through to the quarter-finals saw her ranking rise to a career-high ranking of 49 in the world. Wimbledon gave her a wildcard into the tournament, preventing the need for going through the qualifying tournament, but as a player who has had most of her success on clay, it’s debatable as to whether that was ever actually going to be the plan.

Prior to Roland Garros, her best result was a semi-final showing at WTA Acapulco (beating 7th seed Edina Gallovits but losing to Maria Emilia Salerni). She also qualified for WTA Vina Del Mar (l. to Rossana De Los Rios in round one). Other than that, she was on the ITF circuit, with quarter-finals in $25K Las Palmas (l. to qualifier Kirsten Flipkens), $25K Saint Gaudens (France) (l. to Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova) and $50K Latina (Italy) (l. to 4th seed Olivia Sanchez) and a final in $25K Tenerife (l. to top seed Tzipora Obziler).

She was part of the Spanish Fed Cup team earlier this year, losing to Jie Zheng but beating Shuai Peng in straight sets. Her ranking rise is likely to make her an integral part of the Fed Cup team in coming ties.

Following on from Roland Garros, Carla reached the second round of WTA Barcelona (l. to 2nd seed Maria Kirilenko), the second round of Wimbledon ( 2nd seed Jelena Jankovic), the quarter-finals of WTA Palermo (l. to 5th seed Sara Errani) and the semi-finals of WTA Forest Hills (l. to Shuai Peng). She also represented Spain in the Fed Cup final against Russia, losing in straight sets to Svetlana Kuznetsova.

Carla kicked off 2009 in great style after stunning Venus Williams in the second round of the Australian Open. She backed that up with comfortable wins over compatriots Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez and Anabel Medina Garrigues (seeded 21st) to reach her second career Grand Slam quarter-final, which will be against 4th seed Elena Dementieva.

Click here to read Carla’s “Getting To Know…” interview on the WTA website.

No comments:

Post a Comment