Tracy Austin: Serena's future remains fuzzy - TennisForum.com
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post #1 of 48 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 2005, 02:03 AM Thread Starter
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Exclamation Tracy Austin: Serena's future remains fuzzy

Serena's future remains fuzzy
Will she take on goal of getting to No. 1 again?



Serena Williams must make a high-level commitment to tennis if she is to have a chance at again rising to the top of the women's game, writes Tracy Austin of NBCSports.com

COMMENTARY
By Tracy Austin
NBC Sports
Updated: 7:37 p.m. ET Dec. 21, 2005

There are a lot of intriguing questions to be answered in women's tennis in 2006, and at the top of the list is whether Serena Williams has the desire and drive to reclaim the top ranking in the world.

Serena's path not yet chosen
I still feel that if Serena makes a decision that she wants to again be No. 1 in the world, and she can make the commitment to achieve such a lofty status, she has the talent to rise to the top.

I haven't seen signs Serena is willing to make that sort of commitment. I saw her at the season-ending Tour Championships, and it was clear she'll need to improve her fitness level if she is to make a serious run at No. 1 in 2006.

Serena can't take a month off between tournaments. It's just too tough of a game now. Her 2005 season was interrupted by injuries (knee and ankle), limiting her to a mere 10 tournaments, with her lone title coming in Melbourne.

And in my opinion, Serena didn't go into the 2005 Australian Open completely prepared. And yet she was still good enough to beat three of the top four seeds in succession and reclaim the title she won two years ago.

She needs to go hard at training if 2006 is going to hold more for her than 2005 did. And only she can make the decision over whether she still has it in her to dedicate herself to tennis to the degree it takes to rise to the status of being the top player in the world.

Hingis take on a huge challenge

Martina Hingis, a five-time Grand Slam winner, announced last November that she planned a return to the professional circuit in 2006. Her attempt at a comeback begins at a WTA tournament in Australia on New Year’s Day.

Since there is more potential downside to upside in her comeback, I think it's a courageous move by Hingis to return to professional tennis. But after an absence of over three years, she faces some steep challenges if she's to get back to being a top player.

The biggest obstacle for Hingis to overcome will be her lack of match play. Suffering from chronic inflammation of both heels as well as foot and ankle injuries, and perhaps a waning of her competitive desire, Hingis retired in October of 2002.

She was 14 when she turned pro, and only 22 when she quit after winning 40 singles titles and five Grand Slams. Hingis made a brief one-match comeback last February, losing in the first round of the Volvo Women’s Open in Thailand.

Women's tennis has really changed since Hingis last played professionally. Specifically, the serves are much more powerful and are much bigger weapons.

If you look at the top women on tour today, most of them have very strong serves. Hingis' serve was never big, and I have to wonder if she will be hurt by not having a big serve to win points on, and also whether her second serve will be attackable.

Another key will be how the pace of her groundstrokes hold up against today's big and powerful hitters.

Capriati has designs on a return

Former world No. 1 Jennifer Capriati did not play a match on tour in 2005 because of shoulder surgery. But from what I've heard, she really wants to come back to the WTA Tour.

Capriati went to Key Biscayne and was training there, and she's undergone physical therapy. I would love to see her return because I think she is a very exciting player to watch with her style of play.

Lindsay Davenport has not committed to play past March. In 2005, Davenport managed to finish atop the WTA rankings for a second straight year and the fourth time in her tremendous career.

I think it's a smart thing for her not to commit too far ahead. She's done everything she needs to in tennis, but at the same time I would think it's pretty tough to retire when you are still in the hunt for Grand Slams and the No. 1 ranking in the world.

After winning the U.S. Open last September, Kim Clijsters said she would play just two more years on the WTA Tour. It's interesting that she gave such a definite deadline to walk away from the game.

Two years out you have no idea of what you will be dealing with. It wasn't a smart move on her part to make such an announcement since the media's questioning of her over it will get tiresome. Everywhere she goes she is going to be asked about that two-year deadline.

I think it was really silly for her to put that out there, and I'm interested to see if she alters that position sometime in 2006.

Vaidisova bears watching

I'm very impressed with Nicole Vaidisova of the Czech Republic. I think she is ready to burst on the scene in 2006, and have a breakout season.

She showed signs of being on the rise in 2005 as she made it to the fourth round of the U.S. Open, and the third round at both the Australian Open and Wimbledon. The 16-year-old had a singles record of 48-15.

And now that she has some experience under her belt, she has more confidence. And she has gotten stronger so 2006 could be a telling season for her on the WTA Tour.

The upcoming year is the kind of year where Vaidisova's play could say a lot about whether she is going to someday get to the No. 1 ranking in the world, or if she is going to be a good player, but one who doesn't make it into the top 10.


http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/10533556/
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post #2 of 48 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 2005, 02:09 AM
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Her comment of, " I haven't seen serena make changes." is interesting to me. because according to the commentators at the french open, venus needed to get rededicated to tennis. Suddenly three weeks later she's playing brilliantly at Wimbledon and then suddenly Venus has rededicated herself. It's not like tracy would know if Serena were training hard or not. Once again she seems to be blowing out hot air.

RIDE OR DIE! Down for Venus Williams



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post #3 of 48 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 2005, 03:50 AM
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The glass is half full

Quote:
Originally Posted by venus_rulez
Her comment of, " I haven't seen serena make changes." is interesting to me. because according to the commentators at the french open, venus needed to get rededicated to tennis. Suddenly three weeks later she's playing brilliantly at Wimbledon and then suddenly Venus has rededicated herself. It's not like tracy would know if Serena were training hard or not. Once again she seems to be blowing out hot air.
Yawn. Yeah we know the drill everyone who says something negative about the Willams sisters is at best an idiot at worst evil. Pull your head out of your *ss, not everyone thinks Serena can comeback but clearly Tracey does. If you could dislodge the giant chip on your shoulder you might have noted the high regard Austin holds for Serena.

The Wimbledon run was impressive but at this point more an isolated incident than full fledged comeback.
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post #4 of 48 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 2005, 06:01 AM
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I love Tracy adn her commentary during matches but there is something about her articles I don't like.

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post #5 of 48 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 2005, 06:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by careyscott
If you could dislodge the giant chip on your shoulder

Those in glass houses.....

RIDE OR DIE! Down for Venus Williams



[SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]


I GOT 5 ON IT!!!!! VENUS WILLIAMS 5 TIME WIMBLEDON CHAMPION!!!!!
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post #6 of 48 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 2005, 07:04 AM
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Only winnning slams really matters.
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post #7 of 48 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 2005, 07:21 AM
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One thing though, is that she believes Serena can get back to #1. A smarmy bitch like Mary Carillo would never admit that.

Really, don't even look at me...
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post #8 of 48 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 2005, 10:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kiwifan
Only winnning slams really matters.
To who? Is not having one keeping you up nights?
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post #9 of 48 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 2005, 10:45 AM
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I actually agree with most of that article. I love Serena, so don't get defensive over this comment, but I believe that if she really wanted to be number 1, she would be. She was practically invincible when she was at her peak. Serena still has the mentality and the game, she just needs to work hard and enter more tournaments.

Both Williams sisters say all this crap about not playing tournaments so that they don't get injured, but being fit by playing more tournaments certainly can't be a bad thing.

Anyways, good luck next year Serena

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post #10 of 48 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 2005, 10:57 AM
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?? she says she saw serena at the 2005 YEC!??
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post #11 of 48 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 2005, 12:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TomTennis
?? she says she saw serena at the 2005 YEC!??
Serena was there for the parties. She was at Spago's all dolled up along with the other gals.

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post #12 of 48 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 2005, 12:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VeeReeDavJCap81
One thing though, is that she believes Serena can get back to #1. A smarmy bitch like Mary Carillo would never admit that.
OMG..I haven't seen the word "smarmy" in a LONG time! But Tracy is correct...if Serena wants it, she can do it...but so can several other players.

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post #13 of 48 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 2005, 02:46 PM
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tracy austin is not one to judge. serena is ten times the player she ever was and would most definitely beat her at serena's lowest vs. austin's prime. dumb bitch.

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post #14 of 48 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 2005, 02:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by careyscott
The Wimbledon run was impressive but at this point more an isolated incident than full fledged comeback.
Oh please!

First, bitches dog Venus saying she'll never do this or
that again and when she makes them eat crow they then
all of the sudden find something else to bitch about. Go figure!

Isolated my ass!

Venus' form has returned and it was her health that
prevented her from doing more after Wimbledon.

She won Wimbledon and is gonna have a great 06'.
While everyonbe else was gabbing she was hard at
work, something she's been doing since the 04' offseason.

So has said, both Chris Evert & Zina Garrison.
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post #15 of 48 (permalink) Old Dec 22nd, 2005, 02:53 PM
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It's just her opinion! Like she said she "she can get back to #1" People need to chill.

I didn't know Lindsay is not commited to anything past March. I hope she does well with her new coach!
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