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Friday, June 26, 2009

Seeds too strong for Robson/Stoop

Photo Titled Kuznetsova and Mauresmo
Kuznetsova and Mauresmo
Svetlana Kuznetsova and Amelie Mauresmo ended British interest in the women’s doubles with a 6-3, 6-4 win over Laura Robson and Georgie Stoop in the second round.

The British pair set up the clash with the 16th seeds after beating fellow Brits Jade Curtis and Anna Smith 6-4, 3-6, 13-11 on Wednesday in an epic first round match. And while they put up a dogged fight against Kuznetsova and Mauresmo, the experience of their opponents, who have five Grand Slams titles between them, eventually shone through on a packed Court 12.

While the energetic Stoop smiled and bounded around the court, Robson’s body language was a different story. The reigning junior Wimbledon champion looked forlornly at her camp after almost every error that came off her racket and while her supporters tried their best to gee the 16-year-old up, they were rewarded with only a few flashes of genius. Her downfall was her volley, which was frequently knocked long or without purpose.

Stoop, a relative unknown with British fans until the wild card gave Vera Zvonereva a scare in the first round, played solidly throughout, frequently enjoying – and winning – powerful exchanges with Kuztnetsova from the back of the court.

The French/Russian pairing took the first set on their third set point when Stoop netted after a fierce drive by Kuztnetsova, who lifted the Roland Garros singles title three weeks ago.

The British pair hit back in the second set, opening up a 3-0 lead after a mini slip-up from their opposition. For a brief period Robson appeared a little happier, reminding fans of her potential as she relaxed to whip a couple of forehand winners crosscourt to help break the Kuztnetsova serve .

Sensing a decider could be on the cards, the crowd eagerly willed on the home talent. However, their inexperience showed as they tensed up and allowed Mauresmo and Kuztnetsova to peg the score back level to 3-3.

A frustrated Robson then handed her opponents a further 5-4 advantage courtesy of a poor service game, which included two double faults. Kutznetsova then held serve easily for victory, which booked a place in the third round against third seeds Rennee Stubbs and Samantha Stosur.

Court 12 - Ladies' Doubles - 2nd Round
Svetlana Kuznetsova RUS (16)/
Amelie Mauresmo FRA (16)
Laura Robson GBR /
Georgie Stoop GBR

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