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Azarenka, Radwanska, Robson talk friendship, music and the Royal Baby

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Dominika Cibulkova helped host WTA Live from La Costa Resort and Spa. (Screengrab from YouTube)

No. 2 seed Petra Kvitova towers over Dominika Cibulkova. (Screengrab from YouTube)

Dominika Cibulkova, who will defend her Southern California Open title this week after winning the Bank of the West Classic on Sunday,  joined the WTA Live crew on Monday to play some Ping-Pong, grill her fellow WTA players and engage in a surprisingly intense game of “Name That Song” against top-seeded Victoria Azarenka.

Here are some of the things we learned from the hour-long broadcast, which had interviews with Azarenka, Petra Kvitova, Ana Ivanovic, Laura Robson and Roberta Vinci.

• Azarenka is now a California girl. She reveals that she has a place in Los Angeles. She also finally referred to Redfoo as her “boyfriend.”

• Ivanovic, who has split with coach Nigel Sears, says she will work with Sven Groeneveld and the Adidas Player Development Program for now. She’s also traveling with a full-time hitting partner.

• It took only two questions for Robson to be asked about the Royal Baby. “I think it’s a way bigger deal here than it is in England,” she said. “I don’t feel like anybody really cares that much in England.”

• Vinci grunts when she plays Ping-Pong.

• Agnieszka Radwanska can’t stop listening to P!nk’s Just Give Me a Reason. She also loves high heels. (Hey, I never said the things we learned were going to be groundbreaking.)

• Cibulkova asked Kvitova who her best friends are on tour. “I can say some Czech players … then I speak a lot with Stefanie Voegele, Magda Rybarikova, you … sometimes.”

• The tournament director of the Southern California Open, Allastair Garland, also happens to be Cibulkova’s agent at Octagon. The fact that this conflict of interest is openly joked about is just so tennis.

• If you are in Carlsbad, you might spot Ivanovic at the local Whole Foods. Interestingly, Ivanovic says she’ll probably live outside of Serbia after she retires because she loves the beach.

• Musicians Azarenka and Cibulkova know well: Flo Rida, Black Eyed Peas, Kelly Clarkson and The Script. Musicians they don’t know that well: The Killers, Kings of Leon, Monsters and Men and The Eagles.

• Robson will give Andrea Petkovic a run for her money for the WTA’s resident hipster. She stumped everyone with her love for Vampire Weekend and Top of the Lake.

• Funniest moment: Robson said her second-favorite sport is “darts.” Cibulkova heard “dance.” That English accent can confuse the best of them.

• Best Q&A exchange of the hour: “Name a member in the WTA Original 9.”  Cibulkova: “Maria Sharapova!”

You can watch the full hour here:

  • Published On Jul 29, 2013
  • 8 comments
    Kaboodle
    Kaboodle

    Nice how female athletes are asked questions about friends and fun and songs and movies and babies and candy and fluffy clouds and little kittens and unicorns and princesses. Gee, I wonder what political magazines and academic journals these ladies read? Ah, who cares, bring on the pillow fight!

    attheapollo
    attheapollo

    @Kaboodle if the guys were interesting and had all-access, they would be asked the same things, too.

    topsport1
    topsport1

    @attheapollo @Kaboodle yeah, there are a lot of fluff pieces that run on the atp website just like this..asking players what the other guys favorite food is and the like, not much different


    i'd be interested in more penetrating questions for both but it doesn't mean this stuff has to go

    Kaboodle
    Kaboodle

    @topsport1  

    Also, I'm glad I have your "cool" permission to write as I see fit, thanks for allowing me that "right".

    Kaboodle
    Kaboodle

    @topsport1 

    FYI On a typical shoot, the photographer would take upwards of 1,000 pictures, and the editorial and art departments choose from there...

    topsport1
    topsport1

    @Kaboodle @attheapollo btw, I'm assuming the athletes had a say in how they were posed, you might want to factor that into your thinking

    topsport1
    topsport1

    @Kaboodle @topsport1 @attheapollo I have no interest in seeing either of them naked and avoid that issue entirely, as I try to do increasingly with ESPN as a whole outside of live matches, but if analysing nude athletes and writing gender critiques about them is your thing go right ahead, it's cool

    Kaboodle
    Kaboodle

    @topsport1 @attheapollo

    If you don't think there's a problem, check out the different ESPN Magazine photos of Radwanska and Isner: she's sitting poolside holding balls in her hands, while he gets an action-shot swinging his racket.  But I guess this sort of sexist banal pablum appeals to you...