The Cyclops is our daily look at the one match you should make a point of following during the upcoming day at Wimbledon.
Daniela Hantuchova probably is persona non grata in London right now. The Slovak defeated British teen sensation Laura Robson (think Miley Cyrus mixed with Jennifer Capriati) on Monday, after the 15-year old defending Wimbledon juniors champ took the first set. The No. 32 ranked Hatuchova held on for a win though, disappointing the throngs at the All England Club who are eagerly awaiting the next Brit hope. (Which Robson could still prove to be.)
Today, Hantuchova takes on a more seasoned veteran in China's Jie Zheng, the No. 12 seed at Wimbledon. Zheng was a surprise semifinalist in last year's tournament, becoming the first Chinese player to ever reach the semifinal of a Grand Slam event.
Hantuchova, who has made the semis of the Australian, has never advanced that far in Wimbledon. A quarterfinal appearance in 2002 is her best result.
The styles of the two players are quite complimentary, they both have solid all-around games and each of their weaknesses (Zheng's returns of hardly-hit balls and Hantuchova's inability to hit the ball with much force) should make for an evenly-contested match. The winner could eventually see No. 2 seed Serena Williams in the fourth round.
The best part of Hantuchova's biography is that she and Aranxta Sanchez Vicario once lost a Grand Slam doubles final to Anna Kournikova and Martina Hingis. The fact that there's still a current link to someone who played with Aranxta Sanchez Vicario delights me for some reason.
- Daniela Hantuchova
- Jie Zheng