Wild Wednesday as Stollar Shocks Vesnina, Rogers Rocks Keys at @VolvoCarOpen
Steve Fogleman and Tony Callaio, Tennis Atlantic
It was a day when the rain never came, until it did. Many higher-ranked players and Americans probably prayed for the rain to come to the Volvo Car Open in the second and third sets of their matches to allow them to regroup mentally, but it didn’t.
The result? What tournament officials would privately consider a disaster: Americans Venus Williams, Madison Keys and Bethanie Mattek-Sands bowed out, as well as fan favorites Monica Puig and 2016 runner-up Elena Vesnina. The rain finally came, postponing the night session and dropping penny-sized hail nearby.
There were at least two silver linings in those storm clouds. Fanny Stollar, virtually unknown before the weekend, was the player to beat Vesnina and enter the round of 16. Having qualified for her first WTA tour event over the weekend, Stollar has now beaten Asia Muhammad and world #13 Elena Vesnina and will face Ostapenko today. And she really didn’t have any time to soak it in.
A jubilant Stollar of Hungry walked into the Media Center for post match press all smiles as she had just completed the biggest victory of her career when she knocked off No.4 seed Russian Elena Vesnina in a stunning upset 7-6(7), 7-6(3).
Stellar, ranked 282 in the world, dispatched Vesnina in the 2:05 match.
“It really feels good (to win), but it’s still not done, so I can’t be so happy about it because the next one is coming up,” said Stollar. “I just felt really calm and confident right now. So I don’t have any pressure on me at all. I’m just having fun and playing.”
Though local fans would surely lament the loss of Madison Keys to the tournament, if someone had to do it, let it be Shelby. They got their wish as the hometown girl at her home tournament, dubbed “Ms. Roger’s Neighborhood” by Bethanie Mattek-Sands, made the most of the home-court advantage. Despite offering Keys chances to stick around, the listless top seed was no match for Rogers in a 4-6, 6-1, 6-1 runaway train ride. Rogers gets Naomi Osaka today and the winner gets Lucic-Baroni or Bertens. There is a real opportunity for Rogers to advance deep into her own neighborhood.
If you listened to Keys and Williams at their press conferences on Monday, neither seemed to have a lot of fire in their belly. For Keys, it’s a slow recovery. For Venus, it’s just the grind of the tour. She jokingly(?) said it was her third time in Charleston, when it was actually her ninth. A senior moment?
Play starts at 11:00 a.m.
VOLVO CAR OPEN – CHARLESTON, SC, USA
APRIL 3 – 9, 2017
RESULTS – APRIL 5, 2017
Women’s Singles – Second Round
S. Rogers (USA) d  M. Keys (USA) 46 61 61
L. Siegemund (GER) d  V. Williams (USA) 64 67(3) 75
[Q] F. Stollar (HUN) d  E. Vesnina (RUS) 76(7) 76(3)
 K. Bertens (NED) d K. Bondarenko (UKR) 62 75
 A. Sevastova (LAT) d A. Petkovic (GER) 63 64
 I. Begu (ROU) d K. Kucova (SVK) 46 62 76(6)
 M. Lucic-Baroni (CRO) d M. Barthel (GER) 63 62
N. Osaka (JPN) d  S. Zhang (CHN) 64 64
 L. Safarova (CZE) d [WC] B. Mattek-Sands (USA) 63 63
J. Ostapenko (LAT) d M. Sakkari (GRE) 62 46 62
[Q] A. Rodionova (AUS) d S. Errani (ITA) 62 62
[LL] O. Jabeur (TUN) d M. Linette (POL) 64 64
D. Kasatkina (RUS) d M. Puig (PUR) 60 67(3) 62
D. Gavrilova (AUS) d A. Riske (USA) 63 61
Women’s Doubles – First Round
 A. Hlavackova (CZE) / S. Mirza (IND) d D. Gavrilova (AUS) / D. Kasatkina (RUS) 16 63 10-3
 L. Hradecka (CZE) / K. Siniakova (CZE) d [Alt] D. Kovinic (MNE) / A. Krunic (SRB) 64 75
ORDER OF PLAY – THURSDAY, APRIL 6, 2017
VOLVO CAR STADIUM start 11:00 am
 S. Stosur (AUS) vs  I. Begu (ROU)
Not Before 12:30 pm
A. Beck (GER) vs  C. Wozniacki (DEN) 00
D. Kasatkina (RUS) vs D. Gavrilova (AUS)
 L. Safarova (CZE) vs L. Siegemund (GER)
[Q] A. Rodionova (AUS) vs A. Beck (GER) or  C. Wozniacki (DEN)
Not Before 7:00 pm
S. Rogers (USA) vs N. Osaka (JPN)
D. Jurak (CRO) / A. Rodionova (AUS) vs  L. Hradecka (CZE) / K. Siniakova (CZE)
ALTHEA GIBSON CLUB COURT start 11:00 am
 A. Sevastova (LAT) vs [LL] O. Jabeur (TUN)
[Q] F. Stollar (HUN) vs J. Ostapenko (LAT)
 M. Lucic-Baroni (CRO) vs  K. Bertens (NED)
R. Atawo (USA) / J. Ostapenko (LAT) vs  A. Hlavackova (CZE) / S. Mirza (IND)
 B. Mattek-Sands (USA) / L. Safarova (CZE) vs [WC] E. Halbauer (USA) / S. Kenin (USA)
COURT 3 start 1:00 pm
K. Bondarenko (UKR) / G. Dabrowski (CAN) vs A. Spears (USA) / K. Srebotnik (SLO)