Qualifying for the 2015 Porsche Tennis Grand Prix continued on Sunday, as 16 players fought to make their way into the final stage of qualifying. As usual in Stuttgart, the qualifying matches were met by plenty of fan interest and all eight encounters on Sunday were played in front of a very respectable crowd.
Unfortunately for the many fans, none of the local favorites made it into the final eight, since the remaining two German players in the draw lost their second-round qualifying matches on Sunday.
First, Anna-Lena Friedsam fell to Bethanie Mattek-Sands. Cheered on by the crowd, Friedsam managed to force a second-set tie break after fighting off match points, but lost the decider, helping the American to secure her place in the qualifying finals on Monday.
Sunday also marked the end of the road for 17-year-old Katharina Hobgarski. The young German, who had stunned experts yesterday by beating Patricia Mayr-Achleitner in an impressive fashion, faced Russia’s Evgeniya Rodina on Sunday.
With no less than 648 ranking spots between the two players, Rodina proved to be too much for the inexperienced Hobgarski and the Russian secured a quick straight set win in less than 50 minutes match time.
While qualifying was progressing on the outer courts, the center court inside the Porsche Arena was used by several main draw players to prepare for the tournament. One of them had rather special practice partners, as Denmark’s Caroline Wozniacki was joined by a group of young tennis hopefuls for a kids practice session.
Things got a little more serious later, as Maria Sharapova made her first semi-public appearance in Stuttgart this week, completing an extensive practice session on center court. Unfortunately, the birthday girl felt the need for extra privacy on Sunday and the media was not allowed to cover her practice session following her injury withdrawal from the Fed Cup.
The final four qualifying matches are due to be played tomorrow. Monday will also see the arrival of all the players that have been spread across the globe for Fed Cup duty.