Match Recap from Announcer Andy Taylor, Voice of the Qatar Total Open
Amanda Anisimova advances to the Round of 16
Last year, at just 17-years-old, Amanda Anisimova won her first WTA Singles title in Bogota. She became the youngest American to win a title in over 20-years — Serena Williams | Indian Wells 1999.
A few weeks later, she reached the Final-4 at Roland Garros. Everything was going right.
Then, just days before the start of the US Open, Amanda’s father passed away after suffering a heart attack. Her coach from the beginning, the loss was devastating. In late September, Amanda returned to play two events in China and finished the year ranked inside the top-25.
After a difficult off-season without her father during the holidays, Amanda stormed into 2020 with a Semifinal run in Auckland. But 1st-Round losses in Melbourbne (Zarina Diyas) and last week in Dubai (Barbora Strycova) derailed her momentum.
Anisimova rights the ship in her Qatar Total Open debut
Yesterday, Amanda was back. She dug-in versus a surging Ekaterina Alexandrova, who’s been tough to beat this year.
Ekaterina opened the season by winning her first title in Shenzhen. During Russia’s Fed Cup Qualifier versus Romania, she won both her Singles rubbers, then lifted Russia to the Fed Cup Finals with a Tie-clinching Doubles victory. In St. Petersburg, she reached the Semifinals.
Still, without a win since early January, Amanda refused to lose – earning a gritty, 2-set victory behind two timely breaks. Fueled by Sunday’s confidence boost, Amanda maintained that rhythm tonight. Again, with two timely breaks in both sets, Anisimova shuttered Elina Svitolina’s belief. In just over an hour, the 18-year-old earned her 3rd career top-10 victory.
Head to Head: Second meeting between these two players
Amanda Anisimova -29- (USA) | Round-2 Announcer Introduction
Making her Qatar Total Open debut, this American teenager with a blinding backhand has become a sensation. Ranked as high as World #21 – Last year, at just 17-years-old, she captured her first WTA Singles title in Bogota. Then, at Roland Garros, she earned her first top-5 victory – upsetting World #3 Simona Halep to become the first player born in the 2000’s to reach a Grand Slam Semifinal. A victory she celebrated…by racing back to her hotel to take a chemistry exam. Two years ago, at just 16-years-old, she earned her first top-10 victory over Petra Kvitova – becoming the youngest player to reach the 4th-Round of Indian Wells in 13-years. Here in Qatar for the first time, from the United States – Please welcome Amanda Anisimova.
- R2 — W |  Elina Svitolina -07- (UKR) | Score: 6-3, 6-3
- R1 — W | Ekaterina Alexandrova -25- (RUS) | Score: 6-3, 7-6(4) | RECAP
Announcer Corner | Doha: Amanda Anisimova
At just 18-years-old, this is Amanda’s first time in Qatar and only her 5th Premier-5 event on Tour. No doubt, fans hope to witness the inspired sparks that fueled Amanda’s scorching breakthrough in 2019. And she’s due for a good run. While she reached the Semifinals during week-1 in Auckland, she hasn’t won a match since. Zarina Diyas scored the upset in Melbourne. Barbora Strycova upended Amanda last week in Dubai.
All of that said, Amanda’s first appearance on the WTA radar remains stunning. In 2018, at just 16-years-old, she reached the Semifinal of the WTA-125 Oracle Challenger Series event in Indian Wells. That Final-4 run earned her a Wild Card berth into the Premier Mandatory main event. There, as the World #149, she upset Pauline Parmentier in Round-1, a 23rd-ranked Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in Round-2, and World #9 Petra Kvitova in Round-3. At the time, Petra was on a 14-match win-streak, having captured both the St. Petersburg and 2018 Qatar Total Open titles.
Not only did Amanda score her first top-10 victory at 16-years-old, she became the youngest player to reach the Round of 16 at the BNP Paribas Open in 13-years. Later that September – as a qualifier, she reached her first career WTA Final at the Japan Open and cracked the top-100 for the first time.
 Elina Svitolina -07- (UKR) | Round-2 Announcer Introduction
A Semifinalist here in Doha last year – A week later, she went on to reach the Semifinals in Dubai, then Indian Wells – reached her first two Grand Slam Semifinals at Wimbledon and the US Open – and once again, ended the season in the championship match of the year-end WTA Finals Shezhen for the 2nd year in-a-row. In all, she owns 13 WTA Singles titles, is a 16-time Finalist, has remained inside the WTA’s top-10 for nearly 3-years, and has been ranked as high as World #3. Back in Doha, competing in her 6th Qatar Total Open – From Ukraine, please welcome Elina Svitolina.
- R2 — L | Amanda Anisimova -29- (USA)| Score: 3-6, 3-5
- R1 — BYE
Announcer Corner | Doha: Elina Svitolina
Elina Svitolina owns four Premier-5 titles including the 2017 Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships. In fact, she lifted three of her Premier-5 titles that year alone. Here in Doha however, she’s only won a single Premier-5 match. In 2014 she fell in the opening round to Klara Koukalova of the Czech Republic. Two years later another Czech, Denisa Satralova knocked her out in the 1st-Round. In 2018, eventual champion Petra Kvitova (notice a pattern?) took her out in Round-3, after a 1st-Round Bye.
During the odd Premier seasons, Svitolina has fared better. Last year, she joined the field as a 4th-seeded Wild Card. After a 1st-Round Bye and 2 victories, she reached the 2019 Qatar Total Open Semifinals.
Overall, Elina owns 4 Doha victories and 6 losses. Meanwhile, her significant-other Gael Monfils is a 4-time Finalist on this court. Monfils finally captured the Qatar ExxonMobil Open title in 2018 and owns a 23-7 record in Doha.