Originally written on Tennis Grand Stand  |  Last updated 11/18/14

CINCINNATI - AUGUST 13: Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia hits a backhand return during her quarter final match with Yanina Wickmayer of Belgium on day five of the Western & Southern Financial Group Women's Open on August 13, 2010 at the Lindner Family Tennis Center in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Bernard Tomic started 2013 in style by defeating three top-25 opponents at the Hopman Cup. At first, 2011 appeared to mark the breakthrough of Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova when she reached two major quarterfinals and stood toe to toe with many of the WTA’s leading ladies.  The former junior #1 looked likely to become the latest Russian woman to rise in a sport riddled with them over the past decade, blending ferocious groundstrokes from both wings with a keen competitive instinct.  Soon afterwards arrived the apparent emergence of Australian prodigy Bernard Tomic.  The lanky, enigmatic teenager delivered his “hello, world” moment by soaring from Wimbledon qualifying all the way to the quarterfinals of the main draw, where he won a set from eventual champion Djokovic.  Two majors later, Tomic thrilled his home fans by reaching the second week of the Australian Open with electrifying five-set victories over Verdasco and Dolgopolov. Not entirely concealed by those achievements, however, we...
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