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Pro Tennis Showcase
November 12-13, 2005

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2005 WTA Tour Championships Part 3 of 3
Los Angeles, California - November 12-13, 2005
Photos by Pablo Sanfrancisco and Cliff Kurtzman


All Tennis Server photography is copyrighted by the photographer and/or the Tennis Server, and all rights are reserved. You may not copy these images without permission. While you are welcome to create hyperlinks to Tennis Server web pages, you may not embed these images into other web pages or blogs without permission. To request permission, please use this contact form. Please be sure to clearly indicate exactly which photograph(s) you are requesting permission to use, as terms and conditions will vary depending on the photographer and the photograph.


Amelie Mauresmo
Some "very good bottles" of Bordeaux were going to be Amelie Mauresmo's treat after her triumph at the WTA Tour Championships! Amelie won the physical contest with Mary Pierce, the mental match with herself, and a $1 million payday as she emerged victorious in the final match, 57 76(3) 64.

Photos by Pablo Sanfrancisco.

Thanks to sponsorship from Dr. Robert Heller's TennisMind Mental Toughness Software and from Fieldtown Software, we are pleased to bring you this report, the third and final in our series from the WTA Championships.

The Singles Finals

Pierce and Mauresmo battled it out toe-to-toe in an incredible WTA Tour Championship final this evening. Both played strong and consistent tennis, maintaining intense focus throughout. Pierce was clearly the aggressor, setting the tempo for the match by ripping her forehands and backhands for all they were worth, and mixing things up with the occasional drop shot. Mauresmo gave back as good as she got, laying into Mary's pace to return the ball with matching velocity. Mary edged out a break to win the first set 7-5, and after exchanging breaks in the second set, Mauresmo played tough to win the second set tiebreaker, ending the set with a solid winner.

Pierce went out to an early break in the first game of the third set, only to see Mauresmo equalize it at two games all. The pivotal point in the match came at 4 games all in the third set, with Pierce serving and Mauresmo starting off the game by hitting a beautiful lob winner to claim a point that had appeared she had lost. Amelie followed it up the next point by hitting a winner again, this time off of a Pierce overhead smash. Pierce then went for a winner that sailed just out, putting Amelie up 40-love. Pierce hit a winner on the following point, and then again missed a winner on the next point by the smallest of margins, giving Mauresmo the game and a break lead at 5-4.

With Maursemo serving, Pierce led off the next game with a winner, followed by a Mauresmo shot out and then a double fault, giving Pierce a 0-40 advantage and three break points. But Mauresmo hung tough though some incredible battles, with Mary ending points by hitting a ball out wide, then a shot long, and then long shot again, bringing the score to 40-all. Pierce then hit a shot into the net on the next point, and then finally hit a ball out wide in a well contested point to give Mauresmo the match at 6-4 in the third. Final stats were 55 winners for Pierce compared to Mauresmo's 44, and 49 unforced errors for Pierce compared to Mauresmo's 25. Playing incredible tennis to come back from love-40 in that last game, Amelie hung in tough at a time at which she has cratered in similar circumstances in the past. The way she won, coupled with the victory itself, seems like it could be a big step forward in building her mental confidence.

"I really think it is a huge step for me definitely," Mauresmo explained in her post-match interview, "I mean, I don't know where it is going to take me. But it is a step. And usually, when you pass something like that, you really realize that. And you know, it is an important moment. So again, I mean, I don't know where it is going to take me. But this is really great what I have achieved."

A known wine connoisseur, Mauresmo told me after the match she had a friend bringing her some very good bottles of Bordeaux. They would seem to be well earned!

Staples Center
Mary Pierce and Amelie Mauresmo played the final to a Staples Center crowd of 9,412.

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The Doubles Semi-Finals and Finals

The doubles receives little highlight at the WTA championships, with an abbreviated format of play consisting of just semi-finals on Saturday followed by the finals on Sunday. All the matches were well-contested and determined by the slimmest of margins.

In the first semi-final match, (1) Cara Black / Rennae Stubbs (ZIM/AUS) defeated Elena Likhovtseva / Vera Zvonareva (RUS/RUS) 64 76(4).

In the second semi-final match, (2) Lisa Raymond / Samantha Stosur (USA/AUS) defeated Conchita Martinez / Virginia Ruano Pascual (ESP/ESP) 75 57 63.

In the finals, second seeded Raymond and Stosur appeared to be headed for an exit, losing the first set to the top seeds and down a break in the second. But they played tough and steady, and were able to win the last four games of the second set, and then they went up a break in the third to pull out the doubles championship 67 75 64. +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
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The Matches in Pictures

Below is photography of the highlights of the singles finals and the doubles semifinals and finals. Most of the photography is by Pablo Sanfrancisco, with a few of my shots included as well.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

(4) Amelie Mauresmo (FRA) d. (5) Mary Pierce (FRA) 57 76(3) 64

Tennis - Amelie Mauresmo

Tennis - Mary Pierce

Tennis - Amelie Mauresmo

Tennis - Mary Pierce

Tennis - Mary Pierce - Amelie Mauresmo

Tennis - Mary Pierce - Amelie Mauresmo - Billie Jean King

Mary Pierce, Billie Jean King, Amelie Mauresmo from the back, with Tennis Server photographer Pablo Sanfrancicso seen shooting directly in between King and Mauresmo:

Tennis - Mary Pierce - Amelie Mauresmo - Billie Jean King - Pablo Sanfrancisco

Tennis - Mary Pierce

Tennis - Amelie Mauresmo

Saturday, November 12, 2005

(1) Cara Black / Rennae Stubbs (ZIM/AUS) d. Elena Likhovtseva / Vera Zvonareva (RUS/RUS) 64 76(4)

Cara Black (right) / Rennae Stubbs (left):

Tennis - Cara Black - Rennae Stubbs

Elena Likhovtseva (right) / Vera Zvonareva (left):

Tennis - Elena Likhovtseva - Vera Zvonareva

(2) Lisa Raymond / Samantha Stosur (USA/AUS) d. Conchita Martinez / Virginia Ruano Pascual (ESP/ESP) 75 57 63

Lisa Raymond (left) / Samantha Stosur (right):

Tennis - Lisa Raymond - Samantha Stosur

Conchita Martinez (right) / Virginia Ruano Pascual (left):

Tennis - Conchita Martinez - Virginia Ruano Pascual

Sunday, November 13, 2005

(2) Lisa Raymond / Samantha Stosur (USA/AUS) d. (1) Cara Black / Rennae Stubbs (ZIM/AUS) 67(5) 75 64

Tennis - Cara Black - Rennae Stubbs

Tennis - Cara Black - Rennae Stubbs

Tennis - Lisa Raymond - Samantha Stosur

Lisa Raymond / Samantha Stosur victorious:

Tennis - Lisa Raymond - Samantha Stosur

Tennis - Lisa Raymond - Samantha Stosur - Cara Black - Rennae Stubbs - Billie Jean King

To Part 1: November 8-10 Round Robin

To Part 2: November 11 Round Robin and November 12 Singles Semi-Finals

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