miércoles, 5 de noviembre de 2008

Dinara Safina

Dinara Safina

Seed: 2
2008 record: 55-17, four titles
2008 Grand Slams: 1R, F, 3R, SF
Career Grand Slam titles: none
Previous appearance at year-end championships: N/A

Safina, the solitary newcomer to the bonanza, turned her career around after teaming with Croatian coach Zeljko Krajan, a baby-faced 29-year-old.

Safina's ascent began on clay in Berlin, where, after a mediocre 11-10 start to the campaign, she sent Henin into retirement, edged Serena Williams and ousted Elena Dementieva for the title.

Against the trio, Safina, 22, rallied from a set down in each round, foreshadowing her French Open experience. In Paris, Safina saved match points when encountering Dementieva and a brooding Sharapova on her way to her maiden Grand Slam final. She backed up that performance by excelling during the U.S. Open Series and advancing to the U.S. Open semis.

But as Safina has pointed out herself, she remains prone to losing it mentally.

Adams' verdict: "We all know for Dinara, her toughest challenge is really keeping her emotions together. When you're playing high-caliber tennis day in and day out, it can be testing, so it's going to be very tricky for Safina."

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