R2: [9/16] Tinne Gilis (Bel) 3-0 Emily Whitlock (Wal) 11-5, 11-6, 11-8 (30m)
Masterclass from Tinne: Power and Accuracy
Those two strangely enough never played today, and although their ranking is not that close at the moment (Tinne 18, Em 28), a few months ago before her string of injuries, Emily was WR12. So I was expecting a close encounter.
But today, Belgian Tinne Gilis didn’t put a foot wrong. Well, she still gave a point per game on unforced errors, but that’s about it. At no time we felt that she was threatened.
On the other hand, Emily, just fresh from 3 months lockdown and a traditional court, took a game to get used to the glass court. In the next game, she was neck to neck with her opponent, she seems to be able to compete only till 5/5, then just didn’t have enough energy to pick up what Tinne was throwing at her, and that was a lot. Unable to display her skills, not at the best of her match fitness, the Welsh never felt at ease on the court.
The third is the longest game, and the most disputed – proof that Emily just needs a few more matches to get back on song. At 8/8, it was all still possible for the Welsh but Tinne’s depth, length and volley drop shots were just too good today….
“First of all, I’m very relieved.
“I’ve never played Emily before. I remember watching her playing when I was a junior and I looked up to her. She was winning the U19 British and I was very honoured to be on court with her.
“I was very pleased with my performance today and I didn’t feel any pressure. I don’t know why, I was the higher seed, but I didn’t feel any pressure and that was good. I was very excited for this tournament, so I think that’s why I stayed so calm today and I’m very happy to get the win today.
“I had a few opportunities and I didn’t feel like I could finish them. I did sometimes, but I didn’t feel comfortable. I think in the next round I have to focus on my execution which is a big thing, but right now I think I’m just going to enjoy the victory.”
🗣 "I was very excited for this tournament so I think that's why I stayed so calm today. I am very happy to get the win!"@TinneGilis was relieved to get through in straight games, having looked up to @em_whitlock throughout her junior career!#BlackBallOpen pic.twitter.com/V33A49rOeV
— PSA World Tour (@PSAWorldTour) March 13, 2021