Ana’s Doha campaign got off to a good start yesterday, with a 6-1, 4-1 (retired) victory over Carla Suarez Navarro. In a match that lasted only 55 minutes, Ana breezed to victory with not much of a challenge from the hobbled Spaniard, who was suffering through some sort of leg injury.
Ana held to love in the opening game of the match, and then quickly broke Suarez Navarro for a 2-0 lead. Ivanovic however, surrendered the break right back in the next game, but immediately got it back to take a 3-1 lead. There was no looking back at that point as she cruised to a quick and easy first set win, 6-1.
Suarez Navarro begin the 2nd set with her first hold of serve in the match. After Ana held serve herself to level the set at 1-1, Suarez Navarro called for a medical timeout and went back to the locker room. During this break, Ana called her coach Nigel Sears down to have a talk. It was a very brief conversation as Nigel just told her to remain calm and composed and just keep playing as she was doing. I think Ana was just looking for some company rather than get coaching advice. Nigel kept things short and simple and quickly went back to the players box with Dragana. Suarez Navarro came back on court, but wasn’t moving well. Ana took advantage by hitting the ball well all over the court and broke the Spaniard to take a 2-1 lead. After another relatively easy hold and break from Ana to go up 4-1, Suarez Navarro retired and Ana advanced to the 2nd round.
This was a promising start for Ana, as she played well throughout the entire match. Her serve was reminiscent of the serve that got her through the first 3 rounds of the Australian Open, and she hit the ball well from both wings, forehand and yes, even from the backhand side. The match was never in doubt. It was just a question of how quickly Ana would win. She was remarkably calm and composed. I don’t even think she yelled “adje” once. Ana had a stoic reaction at match’s end, knowing her opponent was in pain. Take note, Domi.
Next up for Ana is either her Wimbledon conqueror Petra Cetkovska or Petra Martic. They’ll play each other tomorrow which means Ana will get the day off and play her next match on Wednesday.
After the match, Ana took time to answer questions from fans via the WTA twitter account. As you can imagine, the questions came flooding in. While she wasn’t asked if she would be my valentine (Yes, I actually asked that. Don’t judge me), she did answer a few others, including one of my own. You can view them here.
Also, in case you missed it, Ana attended the Doha players party on Sunday with BFF Sorana Cirstea. They do look a lot like sisters, if you ask me.