Clara Tauson from Denmark who made the main draw for the first time in her career at Australian Open facing one of the favorites for the Daphne Akhurst Memorial Cup this year Kontaveit. The 19 year old Dane never looked out of place against the sixth seeded Estonian. She never looked back from winning the break against Anett in the opening game. She prefers to be on the front foot which suits the hard court surface pretty well. Watch opening game advantage Tauson. Watch how she attacks the weak second serve , low and hard keeping Anett on the baseline. The backhand down the line to finish was the coupe de grace. Clara survived the following game which was a long deuce game to solidify the hold. When you serve at 53% you are asking for the returner to nail you on second serve. That was Anett in this match and Clara obliged majestically on the backhand on either side of the court. In contrast Clara was slightly better, not awesome , but decent at 59% with emphasis on placement. Watch 3-2 Tauson (30-0). The double break for Clara in the next game sealed Anett’s fate with regards to the first set. Back to back love games at 4-2 and 5-2 for the Dane. That backhand almost unplayable.
Anett was having one of those days. You know those days when no matter how well you are hitting the ball, your opponent seems to find the lines like the ball is magnetically attracted to it. Watch 1-0 Anett 15-15. Better set for the Estonian though than the first. Much more assured during the rallies and that forehand of hers showing up more. She finally broke the Dane at 2-1. Watch was the magic formula? Sudden change in direction of shots like at 30-30. Clara doesn’t play well on serve when she is pushed to deuce. All the hard work came to knot for Anett on her racquet in the set thereafter. She continued to serve to Clara’s backhand even though she was getting murdered by her. When she did serve to her forehand she wasn’t putting much power and placement on the ball. Just watch 3-1(30-30). She won one more game on Clara’s racquet and that was it. Lesson for the young players. Being just a good returner(but weak server) gets you far against a fellow good returner, but you need to learn to hold serve first(as all pressure is always on the returner) before you become a great returner if you truly want to become a winner in tennis. Finally there was a hold of serve in the 10th game as Clara closed it out after a series of breaks of serve. She did it to love too as Anett lost her way with some unforced errors on break point at 4-4 and match point at 5-4(40-0). Not the start she had for 2022 that’s for sure.