2023 Reports 2023 Round Two

R2: Rowan ill, has to retire against Tinne

Tinne Gilis (BEL) bt [6] Rowan Elaraby (EGY) 9-11, 11-8, 11-4, 10-10 retired (45m)

What a strange match that was.

First, a very dominant Rowan in the opener, 6/3, 7/5, only to be caught up 8/8, 9/9, taking the game 11/9 in 12m, 10 winners. But from the second game, I could see how the Egyptian was not putting any weight on the ball, in particular on return of serve. And she goes for 5 winners to 5, losing the second game 11/8 in 10m.

She doesn’t show up at all in the 3rd, not hitting the ball, and not running, 11/4 Tinne in 6m!

Then I see her going at the back, receiving treatment on her injured elbow by Derek, PSA physio, cold spray, and she comes back a different player. She is hitting hard again, pushing Tinne to the four corners, and dominates that 4th, 4/1. Then stops, as out of breath.

We quickly realise she is about to throw up. The ref, following the rule, informs her that she has to concede the game if she doesn’t continue play. She thinks about going off court, realises that means she lost the match, and starts playing again. First very erratically, then better and better as the game proceeds.

5/5, 7/7, 8/8, game ball 10/8. Is she going to be able to force a decider? But she slows down again, we see she is really not well, 10/10, and she just goes out, as about to be sick on the court….

Tinne : “I’m not sure what happened, at the beginning of the last game it looked like she had something wrong, but then she looked like she was fired up again and ready to play.  She was starting to scream and everything, so I thought she was back. Then halfway through she started feeling sick again, I don’t know why and it’s definitely not the way I wanted to win. There’s nothing I can do, I guess, I just have to focus on my next match but I hope she’s okay and it’s nothing too bad.

“At the beginning I tried to adjust to the court a bit because I hadn’t played on it. I had to find the way to play on this court, which was the main thing. They were very quick rallies, they weren’t too physical because she was going for every shot when I played a loose one.

“It was hard to keep my focus sometimes, but I’m glad that I managed to do that at the end.”