My view on Martina... - TennisForum.com

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post #1 of 27 (permalink) Old May 4th, 2002, 05:28 PM Thread Starter
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My view on Martina...

I am sorry if some Martina fans don't like this, but it's my opinion on her now.

This is not driven by her last loss but has been built through the last 2 years.

In my opinion, Martina has lost the train, simple. Whatever she is doing, is clearly not working.

I've heard that Martina was playing better, that she is becoming aggressive, etc.

But it has been a long time since she could be seen as a threat.

Losing to Venus is nothing to be ashamed of but, if she is unable to even take a set off an injured Venus on clay, what can she expect on hardcourts?

Let's see how she is doing against the top players:

1) Venus: they have played twice in the last two years. Their matches used to be exciting and normally 3 sets, the last two were lopsided and straight sets for Venus. Not even on clay Martina seems to have a chance.

2) Serena: of the last 3 meetings, she was completely trashed in two, US Open last year and KB this year Martina looked defenseless, as she was the # 100 ranked not a former # 1.
One match went to 3 sets but it was mostly Serena piling up UE and playing her first tournament since January. Conclusion, Martina doesn't currently have weapons to play Serena.

3) Monica: Martina has won the last two meetings, but they were close and Monica isn't at her best, physically and game wise. Last year, with Monica fit, she lost twice in a row.

4) Jennifer: Martina did push Jennifer at the Australian Open, but wasn't able to close down that match. Jennifer has won their last 4 meetings, 3 of them in Grand Slams

5) Linday: they haven't played much lately, but Lindsay was the first player to establish a dominance over Martina, when Lindsay is back, that's likely to continue.

6) Amelie, they played 3 times last year, with Amelie winning two.

7) Kim, Daniela: They both have beaten Martina. Martina still can beat them but they are improving and Martina is not, they might soon join the list.

8) Jelena: Jelena had that infamous win over Martina in Wimbledon, I don't count it but, as Kim and Daniela, she is getting better and will be a problem for Martina in the future.

9) Justine: They haven't played since 2000. Justine is in a sort of slump and she hasn't recovered the form she had in Wimbledon.

However, Justine has showed there is room for improvement. Most of her problems are in her, not her opponents. Her serve, her mental block against Kim, her tendency to choke, or to walk away from matches. Justine can have a horrible loss in one tournament and be on fire the next (Key Biscayne, Amelia Island), and she has demonstrated that she has the game to compete against the very top players. She has lost the last 5 matches against Venus but 4 of them went to 3 sets and in the last one, she had the match nearly wrapped up. If Martina plays Justine today, she will probably win, but I anticipate that will change in the near future.


As a conclusion. Martina was dominant in 1997. Then she was a top player the next 3 years, meaning that she wasn't dominant, there were a selected group of players that could beat her, but that was even, she could beat them as well, and other than that reduced group, she was nearly guaranted to win against any other player.

From last year, Martina is clearly not in the heading group, she clearly cannot compete against the Williams or Capriati, it's a toss up againt other top 10 player and if she now plays a low ranked player, I don't bet my savings on her.

She still has the ability, and is only 21, but clearly the path she has chosen is incorrect, what does she need to know? it's a matter of discussion but she really needs to make huge changes.
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post #2 of 27 (permalink) Old May 4th, 2002, 05:48 PM
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Fingon,

Very objective...

I don't believe Martina could do much now. SHe could definitely improve but not to the level of being the top player in the world.
The reason being, the style of tennis she has been schooled to play is slowly but surely becoming OBSOLETE.

A lot more of the younger players would become more consistent with their power game and that spells TROUBLE for her. She would still be a contender for GS but she would have to rely heavily on the luck of draw.

I am sure if you talk to Daniela now, she would be confident in playing Martina because she knows the outcome is largely dependent on what she does, not Martina.

I could see some new stars coming on the scene. The future of WTA tennis is powerful play with abundance of consistency, good placement, ability to run down balls and return with fire, powerful serve and return games. Effectively, the chinks that we now see in top players like Venus, Serena, Lindsay, Jenny etc, would be ironed out slowly. Currently we all accept that Serena would hit flurry of winners followed by a slew of error. Few years down the line this would not be the case. I don't oif it would be the Serenas of this world who would play this type of consistent powerful tennis but i believe it would happen.
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post #3 of 27 (permalink) Old May 4th, 2002, 05:58 PM
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I agree and disagree. Obviously Hingis is still a threat every time she steps on the court. But it is more likely that she will loose to Serena Lindsay Venus Capriati than not...the rest she is favored to win. She has room to improve and should start with that serve.

She is in my opinion one of the best players in womens tennis.
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post #4 of 27 (permalink) Old May 4th, 2002, 06:07 PM
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Actually, many are being a bit unfair to Marti. She has not ever played better tennis than she is playing right now. True she has had better results, but never played better. The players right now are just superior. As one poster stated she is still one of the best players in the world. Many people point to 97 and said how great she played then. Hogwash! She was fat and could not win a set against today's top players. Martina is not the #1 player in the world, has not been really since 98. It is just the gulf between her and the very best, is widening.

Beat'em down Ms Williams, beat'em down!
SERENA PRINCESS OF POWER

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post #5 of 27 (permalink) Old May 4th, 2002, 06:11 PM
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I agree with most of Fingon but there was alot of pessismism underlying what u wrote..

i agree IF Hingis continues this way shell even start to have problems with Kim, Juju , Jelena , Daniella etc which someone of her ability shouldnt really have to much problems beating them...but the aussie open this year illuminated the fact martina hingis still has it, but its dormant at the moment and desperately needs a big tournament to boost her morale

maybe she won be back by roland garros as a top contender...but i wouldnt count her out in the near future, champions always dig themselves out of holes .

Good luck to the Aussie and Balkan girls!
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post #6 of 27 (permalink) Old May 4th, 2002, 06:43 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally posted by SM
I agree with most of Fingon but there was alot of pessismism underlying what u wrote..

i agree IF Hingis continues this way shell even start to have problems with Kim, Juju , Jelena , Daniella etc which someone of her ability shouldnt really have to much problems beating them...but the aussie open this year illuminated the fact martina hingis still has it, but its dormant at the moment and desperately needs a big tournament to boost her morale

maybe she won be back by roland garros as a top contender...but i wouldnt count her out in the near future, champions always dig themselves out of holes .
Steven, I don't say I disagree totally, but the point is that Martina has been in a downfall for nearly two years now. I am not meaning when she stopped being dominant, but in the last two years she doesn't have a worthy tournament win except for Sydney in 2001.

Jelena, Juju, Kim, Daniela, Venus, Serena, Jennifer, they are all improving, getting better, Martina is not, or at least, not at the same pace.

I honestly think that, as in Anna's case, she needs to give a dramatic turn to her career. I don't think she can continue with Melanie as a coach and the longer it takes for her to realize it, the more difficult it will be for her to succeed.
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post #7 of 27 (permalink) Old May 4th, 2002, 06:51 PM
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Tennis is a POWER game now. The last 7 Grand Slams were won by POWER players.

The questions is...... can Martina become a power player?
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post #8 of 27 (permalink) Old May 4th, 2002, 06:58 PM
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Fingon I agree with you about Jen, Lindsay and the Williams sisters but the other players still have to play their best to beat Martina on a regular basis. Martina still intimidates Kim, Daniela and the others even if they act like Martina doesn't. Martina's brain power on the tennis court is still a weapon and I don't see Kim, Daniela, Jelena, Justine and the others having any edge on Martina. They will beat her from time to time but put them against Martina in a Grand Slam who do you favour? Martina of course. The others don't have Martina's big match experience and she will beat Kim, Justine, Jelena almost every time.
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post #9 of 27 (permalink) Old May 5th, 2002, 02:09 AM
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Martina is just not in the league of Venus, Serena, Jennifer and Lindsay anymore...

She is sill a top 5 player, very good, but it is her mindset that she needs to change. She needs to practise playing agressive every match, not just against the top players, so when she DOES play the top players, she would have the confidence to excecute the aggressive play. She can play aggressively, look at Australian Open 2002, she can win. But she really needs to be more confident about her aggressive play.

Miss a few shots? So what, continue to go for it. And that serve... I thought it has imrpoved, but apparently not. It has deproved again... needs to improve that, if she can't make it a weapon, as least make sure it is not a liability

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Lindsay Jelena Maria

Mary : Monica : Svetlana : Sania : Jennifer : Amelie
Roddick : Grosjean : David : Djokovic
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post #10 of 27 (permalink) Old May 5th, 2002, 05:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Williams_Rulez
She is sill a top 5 player, very good, but it is her mindset that she needs to change. She needs to practise playing agressive every match, not just against the top players, so when she DOES play the top players, she would have the confidence to excecute the aggressive play. She can play aggressively, look at Australian Open 2002, she can win. But she really needs to be more confident about her aggressive play.

Miss a few shots? So what, continue to go for it. And that serve... I thought it has imrpoved, but apparently not. It has deproved again... needs to improve that, if she can't make it a weapon, as least make sure it is not a liability
for once I agree with you Williams_Rulez lol...she needs have more confidence when she's playing against the Williams' and Capriati. And as you said, she has proven she can still compete & get there, look at the Australian Open 2002. I'm beginning to think that after she lost those match points her confidence has just dropped so much, that she finds it very hard going up against a power player and believing she can actually win She can win!
And as someone else said, Great Champions alwayz dig themselves outta holes and she is a great champion, and I can see by the way she reacted after losing to Venus @ Hamburg that she is definitely realising she needs to stop doing certain things that make it easier for them, she said something like "I keep doing the same stupid things, and I can't even cry or get annoyed about it anymore.."
I have never heard Martina talk like that, and you can tell she was obviously really angry and upset @ herself, and after reading that I think she is gonna go and practice & do whatever it takes to improve the things she does wrong...

GO MARTINA, YOU CAN DO IT!

s ll sd,..s bs t thr,..d ll wtd ws smbd wh crs..


|| Good Luck to Lindsay Davenport ||
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post #11 of 27 (permalink) Old May 5th, 2002, 08:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Williams_Rulez
Martina is just not in the league of Venus, Serena, Jennifer and Lindsay anymore...

She is sill a top 5 player, very good, but it is her mindset that she needs to change.
Martina is CURRENTLY a top 5 player. Whether she remains as such after Roland Garros depends on if she can gain some ground on either Monica, Kim, or Serena. If she drops below #5 at that time, it will be because that is the rank her results merit. That would be a rather ironic twist for those who always felt her rank was unfair before.
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post #12 of 27 (permalink) Old May 5th, 2002, 08:26 AM
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well-said so_tred.

SMARTINA---The Thinking Game!!!!

SERENA---The Goddess in planet Venus.

"Happiness keeps us Sweet
Trials make us Strong
Sorrows keep us Human
Failures keep us Humble
Success makes us Eager,
But Love keeps Us Going"
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post #13 of 27 (permalink) Old May 5th, 2002, 08:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by disposablehero

Martina is CURRENTLY a top 5 player. Whether she remains as such after Roland Garros depends on if she can gain some ground on either Monica, Kim, or Serena. If she drops below #5 at that time, it will be because that is the rank her results merit. That would be a rather ironic twist for those who always felt her rank was unfair before.
Actually I rank her as 5 because there were 4 players that I consider to be better than her, not because of her actual ranking.

VENUS
Serena
Lindsay Jelena Maria

Mary : Monica : Svetlana : Sania : Jennifer : Amelie
Roddick : Grosjean : David : Djokovic
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post #14 of 27 (permalink) Old May 5th, 2002, 11:19 AM
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My question for you Fingon is what you believe Martina's destiny will be if she does not do something to make a dent into the power players?

Can she even ever begin to compete and beat consistently the power players in succession?

And although Martina is a Grand Slam champ, will she go the way of say a Mary Joe Fernandez, who always hovered in the top ten, but wasn't able to make a significant dent against the top?

We already know Martina needs to make changes in her game. That her coach just doesn't cut it anymore for her. Sorry Melanie.

1997 is eons ago and I think the chances of hitting the lottery are more likely then Martina ever having a year like that again.
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post #15 of 27 (permalink) Old May 5th, 2002, 12:27 PM
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I agree with different points from all of you.

I think Martina is just too nice

No seriously She was one hell of a cocky teenager she had fantastic sucess in the early part of her career on her terms. In the past couple of years she has completly mellowed and just likes being the nice girl. No agression whatsoever.

I think she needs a new coach new ideas'. melanie cant do anymore with her. She needs a proven coach to work with her on
the physical aspect of her game someone like BJ King or Martina N.
The mental side of her game also needs alot of work.

The question will she make these changes?

And even if she did would that make her as good as the Williams sisters?

Im a huge martina fan and always will be. I hope she really does throw caution to whe wind and try everything whether it would work or not is another matter but if you dont try you dont get.

Safe.

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