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Daily Bagel: Steffi Graf says if Serena stays healthy, she will break records

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The Daily Bagel is your dose of the interesting reporting, writing and quipping from around the Internet.

• Video: Yes, the scoreline is a little unbalanced, but Petra Kvitova’s 6-2, 0-6, 6-3 win over Angelique Kerber in the final of the Pan Pacific Open was full of some spectacular shot-making from both women.

• Steffi Graf says the only thing standing in the way of Serena Williams and the Grand Slam record is her health. Williams has 17 major titles, five fewer than Graf (22), who is the leader in the Open era, and seven fewer than all-time leader Margaret Court (24).

“She’s got a lot of tennis left in her,” Graf said Friday in a phone interview with The Associated Press. “I can easily see her pass all of our records. I don’t see the competition catching up to her at all.”

Williams, who turned 32 on Thursday, is one major championship away from matching the 18 titles held by Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova.

“Her body has been holding up really well,” said Graf, who was hindered by knee injuries. “She’s so strong and has such a powerful game. She has a chance to overpower her opponents, and she’s shown that over and over.”

• Andrea Petkovic upset No. 2 Victoria Azarenka 6-4, 2-6, 6-4 on Monday at the China Open. After the loss, Azarenka admitted that she wasn’t fully prepared for the Asian swing, in which she went winless in two tournaments.

“If I did it all again, I probably should have taken a longer break and prepared myself better. I don’t feel like I was ready to play – to be 100%, the preparation wasn’t enough, I cannot deny that. It’s my mistake for not paying enough attention after the US Open how I managed my time and managed my health.

“But you cannot put yourself down too much. In the end the important thing is how you come out of it. I’m going to go back, reevaluate and practice more. I just needed more preparation, and that’s what I’m going to get now before the last tournament. I’ll just look at the positives. I have three weeks now.”

• Grigor Dimitrov has parted ways with the Good to Great Academy in Sweden. A surprising move considering the success he attained there, going from No. 48 to No. 29 this year. Then again, maybe it’s not that surprising. Looks like he wants to spend more time with his shoulder-rehabbing girlfriend than the frigid Swedish winter:

“There is no hard feelings in the decision. Grigor has decided to spend more time in Los Angeles instead of Stockholm.”

• Get to know Joao Sousa, the first Portuguese man to win a title on the ATP Tour. He beat David Ferrer in the quarterfinals to set up his title run at the Malaysian Open this weekend.

• The BNP Paribas Open blog salutes the endangered one-handed backhand.

• You could probably see Kaley Cuoco’s engagement ring from space.

• Non-tennis: Saturday Night Live‘s parody of HBO’s Girls was one of the funniest things it’s done in years.

  • Published On Sep 30, 2013
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