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Up and down day for Canada at Rogers Cup

No. 2 seed Jankovic too much for Wozniak to handle but Dubois brings fans to their feet
Jul 31, 2008 04:30 AM

Canada's Stephanie Dubois from Laval, Que., returns shot to Maria Kirlenko from Russia during second-round play at the Rogers Cup tennis tournament July 30, 2008 in Montreal.

MONTREAL–Though it's the second straight time she's reached the third round of her home tournament, it was an entirely different Stephanie Dubois scratching and clawing her way yesterday into the round of 16.

The native of Laval, Que., defeated the tournament's 13th seed, Russia's Maria Kirilenko of Russia, 6-2, 2-6, 7-6 (4) at the $1.34 million (U.S.) Rogers Cup.

Montreal native Aleksandra Wozniak had less success, losing 6-0, 6-4 to second-seeded Serb Jelena Jankovic in a late match that took just one hour to complete.

Dubois also advanced to the tournament's third round in Montreal in 2006, but that was only after a dominant Kim Clijsters – then ranked No. 2 in the world – was forced to retire with a wrist injury leading 6-1, 2-3 in the second set.

This time Dubois earned it, gutting out a match that took nearly three hours and rallying after falling behind 5-4 in the third set with Kirilenko serving for the match.

"I was doing my best, but (Clijsters) had the momentum when she injured herself," Dubois said. "But today, I think I really went to take the match. I believed in myself that I could win this match, and I went all the way. So it's different, but I'm really proud right now."

The decisive third set was a back-and-forth battle, with Dubois matching Kirilenko every step of the way. After Kirilenko broke Dubois to go up 2-1, Dubois broke right back to even it. Kirilenko again went up a break to go up 5-4, fighting back from a 15-40 deficit when Dubois' first serve abandoned her. Dubois again went ahead 15-40 in the next game, but this time she converted on her second break point to tie it 5-5.

"It makes a difference when you start a point with confidence," Dubois said of her ability to stay focused on the pivotal points. "Before, I didn't have that as much."

In the tiebreak, Dubois got the first mini-break to go up 4-2 when Kirilenko shot wide on an easy overhead. Dubois won both points on her serve to make it 6-3, giving her three match points.

She converted the second one, hitting a nice drop shot volley to force Kirilenko to hit into the net, sending the partisan Uniprix Stadium crowd into a frenzy. Dubois said having that support throughout the match added some pressure, but it was welcomed.

"I see it more as positive pressure," she said. "It gives you a push having the crowd behind you."

The Canadian Press



( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Aug. 1st, 2008 05:56 pm (UTC)
Were you here for it?
Aug. 1st, 2008 07:05 pm (UTC)
Non, malheureusement.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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