Caroline Wozniacki and Marion Bartoli are both battling for the WTA Doha title this week. While they're geographically together, they are in far different places professionally, personally, and relationally. Woz has boyfriend Rory McIlroy, soon to move in to new Florida digs near Venus and Serena Williams. She defeated Mona Barthel to move on to a quarterfinal clash with Agnieszka Radwanska, who has beaten her the past two times they've played.
Meanwhile, Bartoli has severed her coach-player relationship with her father, opting for Amelie Mauresmo to take over, if the retired former No. 1 star will have it.
This much remains: Both can play great ball. Both can be grade-A defensive offenders. And both have been WTA "Hot Shots" this week. Witness the two videos below. Wozniacki took down Mervana Jugic-Salkic in the first round, reconciling the lob-retrieval spot she found herself in by slapping a down-the-line backhand winner:
In a more artful, longer point, Bartoli managed to weather Grand Slam winner Francesca Schiavone's clever storm of spins and angles, summoning her hustle for a nifty threader cross-court:
From last year, which woman do you think will have an improved 2013? As Bartoli said in letting go of her father as coach, she craves a Grand Slam singles title. Each of them do, more than they even let on.
—Jonathan Scott (@jonscott9)