More than a tennis match a real life battle, until the very last point. Alize Cornet and Camila Giorgi made sure nothing was left behind as they battled for more than 3 hours in Poland for the BNP Paribas Katowice Open final. In the end it was the French who came out victorious, with the final score of 7-6(3) 5-7 7-5.
3 months ago, Giorgi and Cornet had met in Melbourne. Back then the match between the talented Italian and the solid French was very close, with both players fighting hard until the last. Cornet had to recover from 1-4 down in the third to win 5 games in a row and advance to the third round of the Australian Open after more than 2 hours of playing.
As Camila was given a chance to get her revenge in Poland, the two were set for another battle. And that is just what happened. If the match the two played in Australia can be defined as close, the one they played in Poland was almost as even as tennis can possibly get. As a winner had to be decided it was Cornet's better experience that allowed her to grab her 4th WTA title.
The first set saw the Italian up a break, but the French managed to get back into it and drag the set into a deciding tie break. Alize used her consistency to get a deciding lead and win the tie break by 7 points to 3. Things looked even better for Cornet in the second. Up 3-0 and then 5-3, only two points away from the title at 30-30 the French saw the end. But Giorgi didn't. The 22-year-old - who has power and aggressiveness as the best qualities to her game - fought back to win 4 games in a row and take the match to a deciding third set. Giorgi even had a ball to close it out and win her first ever WTA title, when up 40-30 on Cornet's serve, when the French was serving down 4-5 in the third. A missed backhand though, crashed Camila's dreams.
After 3 hours and 11 minutes an emotional Alize Cornet could raise her hands to the stadium roof of Katowice. It's Cornet's 4th WTA title, following success in Strasbourg (2013), Bad Gastein (2012) and Budapest (2011).
For talented Camila Giorgi the appointment with success is only postponed...
How to play from the baseline
The expression “to endure the rally” is about those indeterminate moments of a rally where none of the players is leading.
The ability to endure the rally is fundamental when you play a “long rally”, because it offers you the chance to measure your opponent’s strong points and vulnerabilities, besides letting you position as best as possible for your next offensive shot.