Kuznetsova could have outside chance

Three months into another predictably unpredictable season, the former  world number two Sevetlana Kuznetsova  split with coach Olga Morozova and hired former pro Amos Mansdorf as her new coach.  Although the Russian has slipped to number 26 in the world she remains a distinct possibility of winning in Paris at this years French open.

The reasons for this are that despite an up and down year,  the two-time Grand Slam champion beat former French Open champion Ana Ivanovic on red clay in the Fed Cup semifinals, before a poor performance in the final. Kuznetsova seems to lift her level against higher-ranked foes to gain traction on dirt. She’s 2-4 versus top-20 opponents this season after going 5-10 against top-20 players last season. Despite this it has been over two years since her last successful tournament.

Consistency has been the twenty six year old biggest concern, and she’s prone to flakiness and frustration under pressure. But the 2009 French Open champion has reached at least the quarterfinals in five of her past six appearances in Paris; she can alter the spin, speed and height of her shots and owns the variety that plays well on clay. Thus with some momentum and the continuation of strong performances against the top player, Kuznetsova may be able to recapture her form to challenge for a grand slam victory.

Despite this after a first round defeat in the Italian Open in Rome to Ana Ivanovic, and a two year slump in ranking and performance, it would seem to early in her recovery to the top of the game for a grand slam victory, although with a French Open victory in 2009, there is potential for her to turn back the clock.